Benchmade Knives Vs Zero Tolerance Knives

Benchmade Knives and Zero Tolerance Knives are two of the most popular knife brands in the US.

They both manufacture their own unique knives for different applications.

Both are commonly thought of as quality knife makers and what comes with this is a high level of craftsmanship which ultimately leads to a larger investment from you, the customer.

When you are investing a good amount of money as a customer, especially in the knife world, you want a product that is going to last, remain efficient, and be a trustworthy tool.

Sometimes it can be hard to tell what makes one brand better than the other, especially when they are both high quality. 

Going straight to the brands to find out will always result in a biased view from the brands.

Smashing Amazon's Top Pocket Knives

So I will help to cut through the noise and give you an impartial opinion of which knife maker is the best.

Hopefully, with the right information, you will be able to find a knife that suits your specific requirements as well as the laws imposed on your state by the federal government, which can vary greatly by state.

Always check the law to be confident when carrying any weapon.

Here's my verdict on Benchmade knives vs. Zero Tolerance Knives.

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About Benchmade Knives

Benchmade knives have been around since 1979, and they're still going strong today.

Their quality is excellent, and they're made by highly skilled craftsmen.

Their craftsmanship extends beyond your purchase, as they are also well known for their continued upkeep and repair of your knife, so long as it is purchased from Benchmade.

The company has grown over time and now offers a wide range of products including kitchen utensils, outdoor tools, and even apparel.

The company was founded by Jim Fixx who wanted to create a company that would provide high-quality knives at affordable prices.

The company is based in San Francisco, California.

If you're looking for a knife that's built to last, then look no further than Benchmade.

Pros of Benchmade knives

  • High quality and craftsmanship
  • Blades are made from S30V steel, which is a premium stainless steel that is very tough and holds an edge well
  • Lifetime warranty against defects in materials and workmanship.
  • Made in USA

Cons of Benchmade knives

  • Can be expensive compared to zero tolerance knives.

About Zero Tolerance Knives

The Zero Tolerance knives are very popular among people who work outdoors or need a tool to cut through tough materials.

Zero Tolerance is a small family business located in New Hampshire, USA.

They remain a fairly recent and young company, producing their first knife for sale in 2006.

Zero Tolerance started off making knives for hunters, but soon expanded into other areas like gardening and camping.

Their main focus is producing durable, heavy-duty knives that are designed to handle everything from cutting wood to skinning animals.

They sell their knives online and in retail stores across the country.

You can get your hands on some pretty cool stuff here such as a survival knife, a hunting knife, and even a utility knife.

The company is owned by a husband and wife team, and they make all of their products in the United States.

Pros of zero tolerance Knives

  • High quality and craftsmanship
  • Blades are made from S30V steel, which is a premium stainless steel that is very tough and holds an edge well
  • Lifetime warranty against defects in materials and workmanship.
  • Made in the USA

Cons of zero tolerance Knives

What Knives Are On Offer At Benchmade Knives?

Benchmade makes some of the most expensive out there, this is mainly thanks to a commitment to using high quality steel to make their knives both high quality and durable.

There are many knives available on Benchmade's website beyond the popular ones we have listed, as well as many other cutlery and kitchen tools.


Benchmade - Griptilian 551 Knife with CPM-S30V Steel, Drop-Point Blade, Plain Edge, Coated Finish, Olive Handle (BKC556BKOD-S30V)

The Griptilian is a versatile knife that is easy to use and easy to carry around everywhere, like many of Benchmade's knives it is designed to be sturdy, reliable, and last a long time.

The blade of the Griptillian is 8.07 inches overall when unsheathed.

While the blade itself is 3.45 inches and can either be satin or coated depending on your preferences.

The S30V stainless steel blade is super well-balanced and is resistant to most wear.

It is designed to be used outdoors and for daily tasks, as it comes with a sheath and a belt clip.

It is also designed with the intention of general everyday use if you are a workman or do a lot of manual labor.

This knife is great for hunters because of its high performance and sharpness, as it is easy to grip and hold, hence the name, hunters enjoy how ergonomic it is.

Yet, the Griptilian's ergonomics show it is made for versatile everyday use and is designed to be functional rather than used in one specific circumstance.


Benchmade - Bugout 535 EDC Manual Open Folding Knife, Drop-Point Blade, Serrated Edge, Satin Finish, Green Grivory Handle, Made in USA

The Bugout Knife is another great option for those looking for a multipurpose knife to go hiking with, or just about anywhere else.

With a 5-inch blade and a weight of 1.6 ounces, this knife is ideal for any outdoor adventure.

The blade has been designed to be flexible enough to allow it to cut through anything, including thick branches and ropes.

It’s also got a nice pocket clip, which means you don't need to worry about losing it.

The Bugout is made from CPM-S30VN stainless steel and is perfect for people who want something that will stand the test of time.


Benchmade - Bailout 537, EDC Tactical Folding Knife, Tanto Blade, Manual Open, Axis Locking Mechanism, Made in USA, Coated, Straight

If you're looking for a knife that is good at cutting rope then the bailout might be what you need, this is a great all-rounder knife that is suitable for almost every situation.

The blade is 3.38 inches long and weighs 2.05 ounces, making it very light and easy to carry around.

A slim profile and design make it a perfect pocket knife and EDC while also being practical in everyday usage.

An axis locking mechanism makes it super safe and guarantees a smooth open in any situation.

The Benchmade Bailout is a great choice if you're looking for a multipurpose knife that can tackle everything from camping trips to DIY projects.

What Knives Are On Offer At Zero Tolerance Knives?

One thing I'm not keen on with Zero Tolerance, and is worth noting, while totally superficial, is that their knives don't have direct names, rather, they are often a sequence of numbers.

In any case, Zero Tolerance has less of a versatile collection, but there is certainly a lot to explore, the function of these knives may suit you better than Benchmade.


Zero Tolerance and Tim Galyean Pocketknife; 1.8 Inch Premium CPM 20CV Stainless Steel Blade, Carbon Fiber Front with Stonewashed Titanium Back Handle, Pocketclip, Made in The USA (0022)

This knife is one of the smallest that Zero Tolerance makes, there is no knife with a blade this small on Benchmade.

The 1.8 inch clip point blade can take on basically any task you need it to, showing how the knife is small but mighty.

Such a small blade means it is a great EDC for everyday use as well as when working.

The grip the handle allows is potentially one of the biggest draws, the deep finer contours mean your grip is exceptional with this knife.

An anodized blue ring around the pivot point of the blade adds an aesthetic element knife enthusiasts will enjoy.

Overall, this is a great everyday knife that is great as an EDC and for most manual work tasks.


Zero Tolerance 0230, Jens Anso Design, Manual Opening Slip Joint Folding Knife , Black

This is a very lightweight knife that features a slip joint sheepsfoot blade.

A double detent system on the blame's pivoting system, one on each side of the blade, allows for very safe carrying as well as controlled opening and closing.

The blade is CPM 20CV steel offering some serious cutting power, edge retention, hardness, resistance to wear and tear, as well as a stonewashed finish to disguise scratches.

Moreover, the handle is carbon fiber, meaning that the overall weight of the knife is a mere 1.8 oz.

This is certainly a simple knife but can be used in many different circumstances, whether as an EDC or for working, this knife can do it all while remaining extremely lightweight and safe.


Zero Tolerance 0350TS; Folding Pocket Knife; 3.25 in. S30V Stainless Steel Blade with Tiger-Stripe Tungsten DLC Coating, G-10 Handle, SpeedSafe Assisted Opening and Quad-Mount Pocketclip; 6.2 OZ.

This is a cool EDC knife that has everyday use, but is mainly so popular thanks to its cool aesthetic design, for knife enthusiasts, which provides a meaning to the 'TS' - tiger stripes.

A CPM S30V provides an extremely high performance blade that is durable and resistant to wear and tear.

Not only does this blade slice through any material like a tiger tooth.

But the stripes on the blade also provide a non-reflective feature thanks to the tungsten DLC coating, meaning this blade is incognito in tactical situations like our striped friends.

The extra heavy frame as well as the textured G10 handle provides serious grip as well as a secure lock for the blade.

Yes, this blade is clearly very popular for its aesthetic, and also practical, tiger stripes, but the knife is also very useful in both tactical and everyday situations.


Zero Tolerance (0450); With 3.25” DLC-Coated S35VN Stainless Steel Blade, All-Black Carbon Fiber and Titanium Handle Scales, KVT Ball-Bearing Opening, Frame Lock and Reversible Pocketclip; 2.45 OZ., Silver, Small

This is another nice looking knife from Zero Tolerance, one which similarly features a titanium handle for a lightweight feel.

This knife is made to be pocket friendly, meaning small, lightweight, easy to carry, and fairly compact.

With this design in mind, Zero Tolerance still creates a knife that has a S35VN steel blade that remains razor sharp as well as being easy to re sharpen and stands at a reasonable 3.25 cm.

A KVT ball bearing system to open the knife allows it to remain safe and for you to control the opening and closing safely.

A stonewashed finish keeps it free from scratches, keeping it an aesthetic knife as well as a very practical one.

Are Benchmade Or Zero Tolerance Best?

It's hard to say if one brand over the other is better than the other, however, I will try to give you an idea of what each brand offers.

Benchmade Knives

Benchmade knives are known for their quality blades and excellent craftsmanship.

They have been around for a long time and have grown into a reputable company offering a wide range of products including folding knives, fixed blades, multi tools, and more.

Benchmade also offers a wide range of other tools such as kitchen knives and other everyday items.

They offer a lifetime warranty on all their products, which means that they stand behind their products with their own money

Zero Tolerance Knives

Zero tolerance knives are a newer company to the market and offer a wide variety of knives.

Zero Tolerance focus is on creating knives that are functional and high quality.

They offer a large selection of different types of knives.

Their goal is to create knives that have both tactical and everyday uses, which we think is great for the American citizen who wants to exercise their rights.

Difference between zero Tolerance Knives and Benchmade Knives

Zero tolerance knives are made in the USA, they use S30V steel to make blades that can hold an edge well.

Zero tolerance knives come with a lifetime warranty against defects in materials and workmanship.

Benchmade knives also have high-quality craftsmanship, but their blades are usually made from 154CM stainless steel or titanium alloys.

Benchmade uses premium materials for knife construction so it is stronger than zero-tolerance models that use less expensive steels such as 440C or similar grades of stainless steel.

The main difference between zero tolerance vs Benchmade is price because zero-tolerance tends to be more expensive compared to Benchmade’s lower-cost options when you buy online at places like Amazon where prices vary depending on model and time of year sales etc…

You can usually expect zero tolerance prices to be a bit higher than Benchmade models because zero tolerance knives are made in the USA and they have that lifetime warranty against defects.

Controlling factors:

price, quality, craftsmanship, materials used for construction. personal preference?

Price is definitely a factor when you’re looking at zero tolerances vs Benchmade as well as other qualities such as material choice which affects the overall strength of the knife.

Quality also plays an important role because if something breaks or doesn’t work it’s going to affect how much enjoyment you get from your purchase regardless of what type of knife it is whether zero-tolerance vs Benchmade etc. (What’s a Good Benchmade Bugout Knife Alternative?).

Lastly, we have craftsmanship – this covers everything from fit and finish all the way out to the design of the blade and handle.

Obviously, if you’re someone who places a lot of importance on aesthetics then craftsmanship is going to be a key consideration when making your decision between zero-tolerance vs Benchmade knives.

My Verdict; Which Is Better Benchmade Knives or Zero Tolerance Knives?

At the end of the day, both brands are very similar.

Both Benchmade and Zero Tolerance offer very high quality knives made from the best materials and often designed by masters of the art of knife making.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Benchmade - Grizzly Ridge 15061 EDC Manual Open Hunting Knife Made in USA, Drop-Point Blade, Plain Edge, Satin Finish, Orange Handle, Warm Gray with Orange Accents
  • Built for the hunt: beauty meets unmatched function, no matter the...
  • American made CPM-S30V steel: For first-rate edge retention and corrosion...
  • Grivory/Versa flex, DUAL-DUROMETER: handle is fully ambidextrous and extra...
Bestseller No. 2
Benchmade - 533BK-1 Mini Bugout Folding Knife, Drop Point Blade, Plain Edge, Coated Finish, White Handle, Made in the USA
  • LIGHT AS A FEATHER: And incredibly tough; Ideal for hiking, camping, and...
  • AMERICAN MADE CPM-S30V STEEL: For first-rate edge retention and corrosion...
  • FULLY AMBIDEXTROUS GRIVORY HANDLE: Has an ergonomic textured grip and is...
SaleBestseller No. 3
Benchmade 945 Mini Osborne Folding Knife 2.92" S30V Satin Plain Blade, Green Aluminum Handles
  • ICONIC: The 945 Mini Osborne upholds the same unique styling of the 940,...
  • WELL DESIGNED: Sporting the classic reverse tanto blade shape with a green...
  • VERSATILE : An everyday carry that is always ready with a Mini Split Arrow...

One point of difference is that Zero Tolerance doesn't offer a variety of products that Benchmade does.

Benchmade has so many different items as well as their knives, including kitchen sets and other multi tools which may be better for your everyday uses.

It's safe to say that Benchmade wants to make knives that are very versatile, their knives while being able to be used as EDC as well as in working situations, they are also designed for outdoor use and much more.

While you can achieve all of this and more with Zero Tolerance knives who are focused on making knives that are both tactical and able to be used in most situations, but their focus is definitely on the tactical.

Bestseller No. 1
Zero Tolerance 0350TS; Folding Pocket Knife; 3.25 in. S30V Stainless Steel Blade with Tiger-Stripe Tungsten DLC Coating, G-10 Handle, SpeedSafe Assisted Opening and Quad-Mount Pocketclip; 6.2 OZ.
  • High performance and premium quality S350V stainless steel makes the...
  • Tiger-striped Tungsten DLC (Diamond-Like Carbon) blade coating and textured...
  • Quad-mount pocketclip convenient for left or right-handed, tip-up or...
Bestseller No. 2
Zero Tolerance Hinderer Pocketknife; 3.5-Inch CPM 20CV Steel Blade, KVT Ball-Bearing Opening System, Flipper, Reversible Deep Carry Clip, Titanium Handle, Made in USA (0562TI)
  • An ideal tool; on the job, for active outdoor adventures, for comfortable...
  • Designed by custom knife maker Rick Hinderer, precision built by Zero...
  • Titanium handle, with weight-relieving pockets on inside front scale to...
SaleBestseller No. 3
Zero Tolerance Sinkevich Pocketknife (0462); CPM 20CV Satin-Finished Crucible Blade Steel; Red and Gray Carbon Fiber Front Scale; Titanium Back; KVT Manual Open; Reversible Pocketclip; 3.7 oz
  • KVT ball-bearing system enables blade to deploy smoothly as user pulls back...
  • Reversible pocketclip allows left- or right-side carry in tip-up position;...
  • Titanium frame lock and hardened steel lockbar insert guarantee knife stays...

With Zero Tolerance knives, you get things like glass breakers and other designs on the handle or hilt for the user concerned more with tactical situations.

At the end of the day the choice is yours, they both offer very high quality knives that are worth the money, each company will cater to different people depending on what they want their knife to be able to be used for.

One thing we suggest is consulting your state's federal law on carrying knives before purchasing anything, while some knives will be legal in certain states, other knives may be considered illegal to carry in other states.

Always make sure the knife you want to buy is legal in your state before spending money on it, it could lead to an embarrassing moment at your local grocery store.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Does EDC Mean?

EDC stands for Everyday Carry.

This simply describes a type of knife that is legally able to be carried around without fear of wasting security's time. 

EDC describes a knife that is able to be used in many different situations, not just tactical or work, but for any use.

An EDC is a knife that you can use in any situation no matter what this entails, cutting material, in an emergency, self-defense, anything you might encounter in your everyday life.

Can You Legally Carry A Knife In The US?

Yes, you can carry a knife in the United States if it meets certain requirements.

One of those requirements is that it meets the federal law in the state you are choosing to carry a knife in, these laws change by state.

Of course, knives are very dangerous, so there are particular laws on what sort of knives can be carried around.

Knives that are legal to carry nearly anywhere are multi-tool knives, Swiss army knives, utility knives, and knives with a blade shorter than 2.5 inches.

Some places you are never allowed to carry a knife, such as a school or courtroom or military bases.

Consult your state's federal law to get the right idea about what knife you can carry and what you can't, especially before you buy.

Last update on 2022-07-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API