I purchased this knife from a Walmart Supercenter near me and I planned to carry it for about 3 months and then write a review on it. Sadly, I haven’t gotten any use out of it and it has been a total waste of $21.97. Buying this knife has reinforced my already strongly held beliefs about the incompetent and laughable company that is Gerber Legendary Blades. Interestingly enough, Gerber is a very prolific company that has been around since 1939 and from a user’s standpoint, this longevity and success runs counter to almost all my experiences with their products.
Despite my lack of genuine use, I still have some details to give you about the Paralite. Sticking with my normal review flow, I’ll start with the blade. It measures 2.9″ from tip to ricasso and is only offered in a plain edge. Which isn’t how Gerber normally roles. The blade is made of 5Cr13 stainless and features a nice-looking drop-point, hollow ground blade that is finished with a rose gold colored coating. My Paralite came respectably sharp out of the box. I can’t comment too much about the thumb studs being how the pivot moves with a boatload of resistance but I’ll say this much. They feel a little narrow for my liking and the right thumb stud looks like it sticks out too much. I could see this leading to accidental openings when it gets inserted into the pocket.
Now, let me tell about the thing that made this knife worthless; and that has to do with the action. Right out of the box, the pivot was EXTREMELY tight. It basically can’t be opened using the normal method. I have to use both hands and unfold the knife like some kind of goofy-ass normie. The display model that I handled also had a stiff pivot but it was actually more movable than the one I eventually got. I figured I could just loosen it up it, no problem. So I tried using one of my torx drivers to loosen it, but I only managed to strip the driver 4 times. I had to regrind the driver tip after each attempt (here is how I fixed my screw driver set). Thankfully, the pivot screw didn’t strip out at all. It must be made out of some hard steel! Through all of my vigorous attempts, I wasn’t able to unscrew the pivot screw. Not even a little bit. It stayed right where it was. And as far as the frame lock is concerned, it is hard to move and hard to get to with your thumb. I don’t like it at all.
The handle is made out of stainless steel, according to Gerber, and is coated with an unidentified black substance. So I guess rust shouldn’t be an issue. The handle has great geometry. It is pleasing to the eye and feels pretty comfortable and secure despite there being zero jimping or texturing operations done to the handle, but all is not well. The screws that are found in the handle, have drive features that are visually non-concentric with the head of the screw. In other words, the screw’s torx drive isn’t in the center of the screw. This makes tightening and loosening the screw less secure and harder to safely accomplish.
The pocket clip holds with a lot of force but the “lip” of the clip is large enough to be readily slid into and clipped to the pocket. Per usual, it is made of steel. It is coated with a rose gold colored finish but, for whatever reason, it had obvious wear right out of the box. I can’t imagine it would stay on very long if I actually carried it and use it on a daily basis. Also, it has one single position and that is tip down, right-hand carry.
So, yes. The Gerber Paralite is a bad E.D.C. knife and the crappy company that is Gerber, is responsible for it. By the way, I did call Gerber and tell them about my plight and they said just to send it to them and that they would fix it and ship it back. The thing is, I would have to pay to ship the knife to them despite it being 100% faulty, right out of the box. I’m not interest in that what-so-ever.
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