The Airlift is an ideal EDC folder that combines key features from 2 of Gerber's best-selling designs--the Paraframe's steel frame and the blade and handle design of the RipStop. Offered in 2 different variations, each frame lock designed model allows for effortless one-handed opening thanks to the incorporation of the dual thumb studs and the "see-through" nature of the frame helps reduce overall weight. This model features a silver anodized semi-skeletonized stainless steel handle, a drop point style blade in a bead blast finish and the pocket clip is statically designed for tip down carry only on the traditional side of the handle. Made in the USA.
- Blade Length: 2.8"
- Overall Length: 7"
- Blade Material: 5Cr13MoV Stainless Steel
- Blade Finish: Bead Blast
- Handle Length: 4.2"
- Handle Material: Stainless Steel
- Weight: 3.5 oz.
The Gerber Airlift Folding Knife
Gerber says, “Like the men and women who carry our gear, Gerber is Unstoppable. Decades of innovation and dedication have put us here. Renowned as a master of knives and tools, Gerber’s problem-solving, life-saving products are designed with the unique needs of specific activities in mind. Today that includes much more than a blade.
“Founded in 1939 and based in Portland, Oregon, USA, Gerber is an American brand whose products have global reach and relevance. Carried extensively by hunters, soldiers and tradesmen, Gerber’s heritage runs deep. And we are now looking toward the future, where tomorrow’s problems will be solved by the next generation of innovations.
“All Gerber products are designed and engineered in Portland, OR where many are produced. We also tap our global supply chain to create a wide range of activity specific gear for wide variety of consumers. And no matter what, every product that bears the Gerber name is backed by our famous lifetime warranty.
“Quality, reliability, innovation. For over 70 years this is what our customers have expected from us. And whether our products are used to save time, save the day, or save a life, Gerber always delivers.”
Joseph R. Gerber once described his young company, Gerber Legendary Blades, as the “birth of an enterprise that grew into big business,” he wasn’t wrong. But it just may have been the understatement of the year. What had started out in 1939 as a small batch of handmade cutlery sets given as holiday gifts had turned into thousands of retail accounts around the country. By 1960, Gerber had quickly become one of the most trusted, appreciated and collected names in knives.
Over 70 years since its founding and Gerber continues to grow. Still grounded in the same principles that first guided Joseph R. Gerber’s “enterprise,” Gerber is a company dedicated to making knives and tools that combine high quality materials and innovative designs that will stand up to a lifetime of use. The sleek, stainless steel sheath knives of the ’50s and ’60s (the Magnum Hunter) have given birth to today’s lightweight, open-frame clip folders (the Remix). Gerber is, however, no longer just a knife company. Multi-tools, axes, handsaws, machetes, headlamps, flashlights, survival kits, digging implements - these are the newest directions that Gerber explores with the same standards of quality and design that inform their revered knife making.
Today we will be discussing the Gerber Airlift folding knife.
The blade on this knife is made out of 5Cr13MoV stainless steel. This is definitely not a high end steel, but it is going to have some advantages. This steel is extremely corrosion and stain resistant which does mean that maintenance is going to be kept to a minimum when it comes to how the blade looks. This steel is going to be tough enough, hard enough, and hold an edge for long enough. That being said, it is really not going to excel at any of those categories. This steel is going to get the job done, but nothing else. It is not going to excel at the task at hand, but it will be capable of assisting you. This is a softer steel, which is why the edge is not going to stick around for too long. This softness is also going to assist you in getting a very fine edge and getting that edge easily. The biggest advantage that this steel has to offer is that it is a budget steel. This significantly reduces the overall cost of the knife. For what you pay, you are getting your money’s worth for sure. You’re just not getting anything extra either.
The blade has been bead blasted. This finish is created when the manufacturer uses abrasive glass or ceramic beads that are then blasted at the steel at a high pressure. This gives the blade an even, gray finish. The blasting also is going to reduce reflections and glares because of how even its surface is. However, the blasting does create an increased surface area as well as micro-abrasions in the metal. Both of these characteristics are going to make the steel more prone to rusting and corroding. This is such an extreme finish that if a blade is left in just the wrong humid or wet environment, the blade can rust overnight. This means that you should always make sure the blade is completely dry before closing it. You should also get on a pretty regular oiling schedule to help block out some of that moisture.
The blade on this knife has been carved into a drop point style blade, which is always a great option. This blade shape is going to be both versatile and tough, meaning that you can do almost anything with this blade and not have to worry about it. The spine of the blade stretches slowly from the handle of the blade to the point of the blade. Normally, this is done in a slow curve. On the Airlift though, it is done at a slow sloping angle. This creates a dropped point, which is both where the knife shape gets its name from as well as where the knife shape gets all of the great characteristics from. The dropped point is going to give you more control over your cuts, allowing you to perform fine detail work with this knife. Plus, the lowered tip is a broad tip. This broadness is going to give you high levels of strength behind the point of this knife. This is why the drop point blade is not prone to breaking or snapping when you are using it—even on harder objects or tasks. Ironically, this huge advantage is also the drop point’s only major disadvantage. Because the point is so broad, you do lose out on most of your piercing or stabbing capabilities. This shouldn’t’ be too big of a drawback, because you do get so much strength from it. One of the last reasons that this blade is so versatile is because of the large belly that it boasts. This belly is going to allow the knife to excel at push cuts, which include slicing, peeling, shaving, or skinning. All in all, push cuts are what you will probably be doing most with this knife.
The blade is a plain edge, which is going to equip you to better take on a wider variety of tasks. The plain edge is going to give you cleaner cuts, be easier to sharpen, easier to get a fine edge on, and better at push cuts. You will have to sharpen a plain edge more than a serrated edge. Also, you will not be able to saw through some thicker materials. The only combat to this drawback is because of the 5Cr13MoV steel, you should be able to get a sharp enough edge on the Airlift to slice through some of those thicker materials.
The handle on this knife is made out of stainless steel. Stainless steel is going to give this knife high levels of durability. It is also going to be very resistant to corrosion, which is going to cut down on some of your maintenance time. Stainless steel is durable, strong, and will look sleek for long periods of time. There are two major disadvantages to a stainless steel handle though. The first is that stainless steel is known for being heavy. To combat this, Gerber has partially skeletonized the handle. This cuts down on weight enough to keep it in the “EDC” weight range. The second drawback is that stainless steel is known for being slippery. Again, the skeletonization of the handle is going to give you some grip. Enough to take on your typical tasks. The center of the handle has also been texturized to hopefully give you a bit better of grip.
The handle is unique, with a spine that slopes at an upward angle to abut 2/3rds of the handle. At this point, it slopes back down to the butt of the handle, which is also slightly angled. The belly does have a very large and thick geometric looking thumb guard, which will protect your fingers from this incredibly sharp bade. There is a thumb groove, but it is squared off, instead of the typical rounded. This should still be pretty comfortable as well as giving you a pretty solid grip. The handle has been skeletonized slightly with different geometric shapes carved out of the middle of the handle. The last geometric shape is a circle and can easily be used as a thick lanyard hole.
The Pocket Clip:
The pocket clip on this knife is statically designed for tip down carry and only on the traditional side of the handle. This clip is kept in place by three silver screws, which do match the rest of the hardware on the knife. This clip is not a deep carry clip, which is a slight drawback. In the middle of the clip, Gerber has stamped their name. This clip is most rectangular with a very slight taper at the butt of the clip. The portion of the clip that is screwed into the knife is larger and slightly pentagonal shaped.
This is a folding knife that has been equipped with a thumb stud and a frame lock.
The thumb stud is definitely one of the most common opening mechanisms that you are going to see on modern folding knives. They are loved because they are easy to use, easy to get the hang of, and don’t have many drawbacks. They also allow you to open the knife with only one hand, which is always a benefit. One of the only drawbacks is that when you do swing the blade open, you swing it passed your fingers, which can result in accidental cutting.
The frame lock is very similar to the liner lock, except that the frame lock is going to use the handle as the frame and thus the lock. The frame lock does allow the knife to have two sides, which helps to make it more fully ambidextrous. One of the advantages of a frame lock is that because it is the handle (frame) it is going to be thicker than most of the other locking mechanisms that you can come across. This is the reason that the frame lock is known for its strength as well as thickness. This knife locking mechanisms is going to allow you to trust the knife enough to perform some of the heavier duty tasks with it. It should remain locked in place whether that means that it is locked open or closed. When the knife is opened, there is pressure on the lock that will force it to go across the blade, locking it at its furthest point. When you want to close this knife, you are going to put pressure on the frame to move it away from the blade and then fold the blade into place.
The blade on this knife measures in at 2.8 inches long with a handle that measures in at 4.2 inches long. When the Airlift is opened, it measures in at an overall length of 7 inches long. This knife weighs in at 3.5 ounces, thanks to the semi-skeletonized stainless steel handle. This knife was also made in the United States of America.
The Airlift is an ideal EDC folder that combines key features from 2 of Gerber's best-selling designs--the Paraframe's steel frame and the blade and handle design of the RipStop. Offered in 2 different variations, each frame lock designed model allows for effortless one-handed opening thanks to the incorporation of the dual thumb studs and the "see-through" nature of the frame helps reduce overall weight. This model features a silver anodized semi-skeletonized stainless steel handle, a drop point style blade in a bead blast finish and the pocket clip is statically designed for tip down carry only on the traditional side of the handle.
You can pick up this knife today at BladeOps.