I have had a habit of carrying some sort of pocket knife around for years. People tease me sometimes, but it really does come in handy to have a blade for everything from opening cardboard boxes to slicing up an apple. So when Urban Kukri offered to let us check out their artistic and unique spin on pocket knives, I was all over it!
The Urban Kukri knife is very basic, but basic does not mean boring. Effectively, the knife is two parts: the blade and the body that it folds into. You open the knife by pressing your thumb against the metal tab, which levers the blade out. I did have a lot of difficulty at first with getting the knife to open smoothly, but a bit of cleaning and lubricant, and it now opens and closes without a problem.
There are no scissors or bottle openers or corkscrews that go with the knife, but it does taper on the outside-it’s enough to work as a thin screwdriver in a real pinch, but beware the sharp side! Urban Kukri designed the blade in such a way that it can handle multiple uses:
from 10° to 15° – a razor
from 15° to 20° – a knife for vegetable/slicing fillets
from 20° to 25° – a cooking knife
from 25° to 30° – universal hunting and/or travel knife
Suffice it to say, this is not a knife that is TSA friendly! It feels amazing to hold, and the curve of the handle makes the knife very comfortable to hold. The tab that you use to pop it open is also how you keep it open safely — just rest your thumb against it and the blade can’t fold in. I found myself using the Urban Kukri to break down recycling, open packages, anything I needed a small knife for, simply because it felt so comfortable to hold. It truly feels like one solid extension of your hand, in large part because of the curving of the handle and the blade.
The craftsmanship is truly astounding. The knives are handmade using mechanical tools, nothing mass-produced, and the metal is hand shaped. This is a knife that feels like it could survive anything, but it’s so beautiful and shiny you just want to admire it. They come in both chrome and copper colors and are made from stainless steel-they do seen to get smudged easily
The Urban Kukri knives are made in Ukraine, and that adds a personal fascination for me. In emailing with them, I learned they are not terribly far from where my grandfather lived prior to World War 2. We don’t have any family left in Ukraine as far as we know, but it adds another dimension to the review for me, as it’s a connection to a small piece of my ancestry.
The one downside I see to the Urban Kukri is portability. The very tiny size can be used on a key ring, but the larger sizes cannot. And the knives, while beautiful, are not very discreet, so it doesn’t quite have the same level of portability as a key ring knife. But it does ride along nicely in a bag, and certainly looks great on a desk. Also, due to the material and design, the Urban Kukri is very heavy in comparison to similar knives-it weight in at 4 oz, while my trusty old Gerber that I keep on my car keys weighs in at just over 1 oz.
Urban Kukri Knives are currently on Kickstarter, with pledges as low as $25 for knives (MSRP $55+) and it seems extremely likely they will have no issue reaching their funding goal. You can check out the various levels, and if you or someone in your life loves pocket knives, these would make an excellent gift-part utility, part artwork!
Source: Manufacturer provided review sample
What I Liked: Gorgeous design; feels natural in the hand; sharp blade; unique story of manufacturing
What Needs Improvement: Opening mechanism needs lubrication, a notch would make it easier to open; tendency to pick up smudges