Benchmade Griptilian – Benchmade’s Best All-Around Knife

The Benchmade Griptilian is one of Benchmade’s most popular models, and for very good reason. The Griptilian was my first good folder and, boy, did I pick a good one to start with! The Grip is not a very fancy tactical, but it has about the perfect size, weight, and design for a general purpose folder! The blade is 3.4″ long with a decently wide belly. Steel is 154CM, which was the first higher end stainless that I had used. The 154CM did a good job with rust resistance, and I can usually make almost any knife get some rust spots quickly. Edge retention was quite decent, although maybe not exactly what I had hoped. As I said it was the first higher end stainless that I had used and I may have been expecting more than was reasonable. Don’t misunderstand, though – the Griptilian held its edge well under reasonable use. The modified drop point was awesome, although I really have a slight preference for a more typical drop point shape. Even so, I believe it actually worked better for my purposes than a regular drop point would have. Another Griptilian model is available with a sheepsfoot blade with a thumbhole, although it is not nearly as popular. I have heard good reports about the sheepsfoot, but I personally just do not like it nearly as well as the modified drop point.

Handle material for the Griptilian black handles (the majority of the knives have black handles) are Noryl GTX. Other handle colors are made of Grivory. The handles do feel a bit cheap and lighter than one might expect, but they feel good in the hand and have enough weight to do the job well. There is sufficient weight in the handle and liners to use the knife very effectively. The Grip worked well for everything that I asked it to do. The size was about perfect for clipped pocket carry as most of the time, I wear jeans, so I can easily carry almost any size knife comfortably. The pocket clip is good size and has excellent retention. I had a bit of a problem with the screws loosening, but I have had that same problem with every clipped knife that I have ever owned, so there was no fault of the knife. Even with dress pants, the fit was good. The thumb stud works very well to open the blade with no problem at all. Honestly, it has one of the better thumb studs that I have ever seen.

The Axis Lock was amazing – easily the best lock type that I have used (and there isn’t much more fun than flipping it open and closed). The 154CM steel held an edge better than any knife that I had owned. My friends couldn’t believe how sharp it was out of the box. I asked it to do some jobs that a pocket knife really should not have to do, and it did them easily. The only reason that I don’t have the Grip now is because I lost it at my church’s work day, and I could have cried when I realized that it had disappeared. The knife is not cheap, comparatively, but well worth the price and I want to get another one as soon as possible! It would be one of my top choices for a good medium folder. The Griptilian is big enough to do the job without getting in the way or interfering with travel. If you want a good multipurpose knife, get a Grip!

A smaller Mini Griptilian is also available in different handle colors as shown in the picture below, such as yellow and blue, if you prefer smaller or more colorful knives. They even have pink!

Permanent link to this article:


  1. Ludmila

    Sent my Benchmade/Bali-Song Mini AFCK with half serrated blade back to the froacty for sharpening (actually, handed it to one of the techs at the Benchmade booth at SHOT). Got it in ’96, IIRC. New, it was scary sharp. EVERYONE who touched the blade ended up bleeding. It would seem that the froacty can no longer duplicate that, as it came back with a normal type of sharpness. What is annoying is that they reassembled it back to the original right-handed clip position, discarding my custom length button head screws needed to mount it for left-handed carry.All my carry knives are modified for improved access for left thumb opening. Basically copying as close as possible the right-handed thumb cut-out.My heavy use knife is a CRKT Point Guard, carried for right hand access. Got it for cutting away bumper covers of crashed cars, so they could be driven. Slightly shorter now, as the tip broke off when I tried to straighten it when bent. Don’t remember bending it. Half serrated.Got a cheapy little Barracuda half-serrated liner lock that lives in one pocket. For opening food containers, or other light-duty use.Leatherman Micra lives in the other pocket. Very sharp blade. Needs two hands to deploy. Only straight blade I currently carry.Have one of those Swiss+Tech Utili-Key tools on my key ring. It is a half-serrated blade. Can’t remember it being used. Back up back up blade, I guess.I have decided I will not be acquiring any more half-serrated blades for future use. Maybe if I find one with the serrations at the tip end. I have decided they are not very useful. They just get in the way of most uses for a knife. The true value of serrations is to keep a sharp cutting edge after running the blade against a surface that would dull/damage a normal edge. That is a very narrow job description for a general use knife. Essentially, that is a steak knife job. Which these can’t even do, with that saw edge at the handle end of the blade.In conclusion, I would say the real purpose of them is to look intimidating, which is why you weren’t allowed to fly with them back before 9/11.

  2. Lori

    Appreciate the recommendation. Will try it out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>