We’ve heard it a million times. A knife should never ever be used for prying. If there were a 10 Commandments of Knives, “Thou shalt not pry with your knife” would be number one.
So why do so many people insist on using their knives to pry open cans or boxes when they know it could result in this? We usually have a knife on us and it’s just so convenient.
Fortunately, for every problems, there is a solution. You could simply not pry (but what’s the fun in that?), buy a separate mini pry bar, or pick up a knife that’s built to pry.
Unless you want to carry yet another tool as part of your EDC, I’d opt for a pry bar knife.
If you think pry knives don’t exist, you’re missing out on a whole world of possibilities. Here’s a list of 10 knives with pry bars.
1. KA-BAR BK3 Becker Tac Tool
For all intents and purpose, the BK3 Tac Tool is a sharpened pry bar. This collaboration between Ethan Becker of Becker Knife & Tool and John Benner of Tactical Defense Institute features a wicked 7-inch blade with a blunt tip and a flat, one-sided grind. It has partial serrations on the edge and a hook cutter on the spine.
This blade is 0.250 inches thick and can be used for prying, hammering, cutting, and smashing. This knife is designed to take a beating, which is why you don’t have to feel guilty when you use it to pry open a door.
2. Boker Pry-Mate
Next up is a knife with a punny name: the Boker Pry-Mate. This robust knife is designed with an eye toward prying. The blade is nearly 7mm thick—thicker than the Tac Tool—but only 3.38 inches long. The blade is made from N690BO stainless steel. This is an Austrian steel made especially for Boker with a focus on performance and durability. That’s a must if you’re going to be using it to pry lids off paint cans.
Ergonomically designed Micarta scales on the handle and a mighty blade makes this a virtually indestructible piece (as Boker says).
3. Kershaw Barge
The most recent knife on this list, the Kershaw Barge is something a little different. Instead of using the blade as a pry bar, it features an integral pry bar that extends out from the backspacer. The pryer is surprisingly strong and you get a normal blade in terms of size and design.
Other than the steel pry bar, this is a pretty standard everyday carry pocket knife with a frame lock mechanism and a 2.6-inch 8Cr13MoV stainless steel blade.
4. Mantis MF-1 Pry Bar
Mantis actually makes a number of pry knives. The other models they have are folding versions. This knife called the “Pry Bar” adapts those designs and makes it into a more durable fixed blade.
The knife is quite long at 9.5 inches, which Mantis says provides superior leverage. The MF-1 can be used to pry, but you should be very cautious around the tip.
5. DPx Gear HEFT 4 Assault
Like the Kershaw Barge, the DPx Gear HEFT 4 Assault has a pry bar built into the pommel of the knife. All HEFT and HEST models have a pry bar, but we’re partial to the HEFT 4 Assault. It’s a bigger knife with a 3.94-inch blade made from Niolox steel and G-10 handle scales.
The pry bar is relatively small compared to some of these other knives, but it will perform admirably in most prying tasks.
6. Schrade SCHA911B Professionals
This one may be a little too niche for this list, but I thought I’d include it anyway. The Schrade SCHA911B is essentially a rescue tool for emergencies only. It’s not the kind of knife you’ll be carrying around every day. Why? First, the blade has double hollow ground serrations the entire length. Second, the tip has a built-in strap cutter. Third, the knife has a spring-loaded glass punch.
As you can see, it’s a very specialized tool that you should keep in your car. However, it also has a pry tip for some light prying. I wouldn’t recommend doing much more than light prying because it probably couldn’t take anything too extreme. But if you need some prying quickly in the car, this knife could do the trick.
7. Ontario Knife Company SP8 Spec Plus
Imagine taking all the biggest tools you can think of—a machete, a crowbar, a cleaver, a saw—and sticking them into one large knife. That’s the OKC SP8 Spec Plus Survival Machete. This is a hefty tool with a 10-inch blade made from 1095 carbon steel. It has a flat bevel with a secondary flat bevel, a blunt tip, a sawback, and a thickness of 0.250 inches.
The black blade is complemented by a black Kraton handle. This knife is a certifiable beast out in the field and one you wouldn’t be afraid to put through the ringer, whether you’re prying or chopping.
8. TOPS Pry Knife
The TOPS Pry Knife is more of a tool for emergency crews or post-disaster situations because of its overall versatility. This is a hard-core tool made especially for firefighters, search and rescue teams, patrol units, SWAT teams, and the like.
It has a 4.5-inch blade made from 5160 steel—an exceptionally tough alloy. The blade has a blunt tip and partial serrations on one side and deeper serrations on the spine. With a thickness of 0.250 inches and a design that’s built to withstand the toughest uses, it’s a knife you shouldn’t be afraid to do a little prying with.
As a bonus, it comes with a Pry-Probe-Punch Tool.
9. Boker Plus Cop Tool
The Boker Plus Cop Tool is one of the most popular and well-known of the pry bar knives. This fixed blade tool is less of a pocket knife and more of a multitool for emergency situations. It has a small 1.75-inch chisel ground blade with a blunt tip, seat belt cutter on the spine, and fully serrated edge.
Checkered G-10 handle scales cover the full tang handle, which gives you better control when using it to pry. It comes with a thermoplastic sheath.
10. Extrema Ratio RAO
Finally, there’s the Extrema Ratio RAO. Take a look at the picture. Yes, it’s one hell of a knife. In June 2006, a special unit in the Italian Armed Forces (185º RAO) commissioned Extrema Ratio to create a special knife they could take into hostile surroundings.
This is a survival knife that essentially turns into a fixed blade when locked open thanks to a concrete pin. The blade is 0.240 inches thick and made from durable N690 steel. It’s 4.75 inches long and 1.75 inches at its widest. The edge is straight and the tip is reminiscent of a tanto profile. It’s meant to be used for prying, chopping, digging, cutting, and more. We currently have the knife available in Desert Warfare.
When you need a heavy duty knife for the most extreme circumstances, the RAO is your knife. The fact that it folds and yet still becomes a virtual fixed blade makes it a great option as a compact survival knife.