Kershaw Filter Review

The Kershaw Filter may look like a bit of an oddball in the pocket knife category to some. To me it does look like it would be better suited as a utility knife, due to it all stainless steel construction.

But, the Kershaw Filter is in fact a very functional assist-open EDC knife. The Filter is designed to look and feel like a sturdy utility or combat grade knife while maintaining a moderate size and weight to be used as a traditional pocket knife.

The assist opening flipper makes this one an easy to use quick action knife for use with simple everyday tasks like cutting cardboard or rope or in emergencies or outdoors. For the designed quality and durability we give this knife 4 out of 5 stars.

kershaw filter review


  • Full Steel Construction
  • Assisted Opening Flipper
  • Contoured Handle for Easy Grip


  • Lack of notable features
  • Steel can become cold in outdoors
  • Single pocket clip location

Kershaw Filter Features

Blade – The blade of the knife is an assist open 4Cr14 steel blade. The blackwash finish is mirrored in the handle as well. The blade itself is incredibly corrosion resistant. The cutting surface of the blade is good for most cutting tasks both inside and outdoors including cardboard cutting and cutting cloth and other materials.

The strong tip increases utility when stabbing through denser materials, the wide cutting surface helps the point to break through thicker substances like animal hide or thick rope.

Handle – The handle is made of the same blackwash stainless steel as the blade and features a rough and rugged look. The slight curvature that starts at the front of the handle comfortably fits your entire hand for steady control during.

The ridging on the back end of the handle allows for control when choking up on the knife during tough cuts or delicate work. The handle does feature a deep pocket clip that stows the knife away almost completely within most pockets and is designed for tip up, right handed carry.

Deployment and Lockup – The knife opens using the assisted flipper located at the front end of the knife or from the thumb studs located on either side. Hand position allows the knife to be safely opened one-handed from either hand.

This is important as some assist open knives leave the operators fingers in the path of the blade when opening or closing.

For lockup the knife uses a frame lock situated in the handle to lock the blade open when in use, and tuck the blade away and hold it closed when not in use.

The steel frame lock is extremely sturdy and provides secure lock up for the blade without worry of play or slippage.

Blade Steel, Function, and Usage

kershaw filter blade

The most notable feature of this knife’s blade is the great corrosion resistance, the stainless steel composition makes this knife almost completely rust proof. This is good for use in wet or muddy conditions and under heavy use.

The blade itself is a 3.25 inch drop point blade with a plain edge. The drop point is very durable for stabbing and the length and width of the cutting surface makes this knife good for most home and utility cutting tasks.

The steel of the knife is easily sharpened. When sharpened the blade is extremely sharp, though the low carbon content of the steel means that edge retention is lower than in other steels.

There is a minor amount of jimping on the back edge of the blade for choking up on the blade for more intense cutting or detail work. The trademarked blackwash finish gives the blade a more rugged outdoorsy look.

Handle Ergonomics, Look, and Feel

kershaw filter handle

The handle of this knife is the same blackwash coated stainless steel of the blade giving the entire knife a uniform look of a rugged outdoor utility knife. The handle is relatively thick at nearly half an inch and adds a great deal of heft to the knife. This improves stability when doing really tough cuts, such as cutting through hide or thick rope.

The handle is slightly curved to fit the hand and the fingers rest comfortably beneath the flipper notch at the base of the blade. The handle is a lengthy 4.5 inches giving plenty of space for the hand to fit under the blade.

The handle is also extremely corrosion resistant just like the blade. There are two particular issues with a metal handle. Metal tends to scratch easily which can damage the aesthetic of the knife, though this will not impact the function.

The second issue users note is that like most metal handles, the steel handle can become extremely cold when used or left outdoors in a cold environment. This can make usage difficult without protection.

Deployment and Lockup

The Filter is an assist open flipper meaning that the knife deploys either via the notched “flipper” on the handle or the thumbstuds. This allows for a safe and versatile means of opening the knife.

Flicking the knife open can take some practice, but once mastered allows for effortless one handed opening of the knife. The flip open motion also stays out of the way of the hand, maintaining safety for the user.

For lock up the knife uses a frame lock to hold the blade in place when folded closed. This is generally considered a bit looser than a traditional liner lock but a more consistent locking mechanism. Any play within the handle is minimal and the blade is kept secure thanks to the frame.

Kershaw Filter Review – Final Thoughts

The Kershaw filter is definitely a standout among budget EDC knives. The all steel construction and the blackwash finish give it a certain look that is unique among knives at the same price point.

The rust resistant drop point blade is a solid performer for most every day cutting tasks and the added steel handle adds weight to the knife for added stability and durability. At almost 8 inches long and half an inch thick in places, the Filter is a medium to large pocket knife designed to be used and not just a show piece.

This is a great choice for a knife that will be used in more wet and nasty conditions or in places like the garage or boat.

Kershaw Filter Pocket Knife,...
  • FOLDING POCKET KNIFE: From the Kershaw Starter series, the Kershaw Filter pocket knife is the perfect everyday carry. The Filter offers a machined look and smooth function.
  • STEEL 3.25" BLADE: Made from a value-priced 4Cr14 steel, the Filter blade is highly stain resistant. Black-oxide BlackWash coating provides extra blade protection and helps hide scratches.
  • STAINLESS STEEL HANDLE: Coated in black-oxide BlackWash and contoured for exceptional comfort, the Filter’s handle provides a secure grip during any task.

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