So glad you asked! I’ve asked myself that question a number of times as I noticed more and more excellent PINK knives from America’s top companies like Spyderco, Ontario Knife Co., Buck, Kershaw, etc. What’s the deal? I asked that question to Ontario Knife’s marketing director Matt recently, and the answer was something I never expected. In fact, before he answered, I offered my own thoughts which I was sure would be the main reason. I said, “oh, I guess it’s for your wife or girlfriend or even daughter perhaps right?”. He looked a bit surprised and stumbled over his words as he said: “well, ah, sure, I guess that would be a good reason too!” It was my turn to be surprised at his response so I was eager to know what was his reason for manufacturing and selling pink-handled pocket knives.
The Pink Knife Mystery Revealed!
The “real” reason for pink-handled knives according to my contact (and tour guide) at OKC, was that a growing number of emergency response personnel like paramedics, for example, have a gear bag filled with lots of stuff but virtually nothing in the bag is pink. That makes it easy to spot the pink knife when the need arises for a fast response in an emergency situation. I thought that seemed like a very random and very “secondary” reason for a pink handle, but I suppose it’s as good as any reason (other than the “gift for wife or girlfriend” reason!). I still think most people who buy this knife are doing it for their “feminine partner” or they are smart girls who realize the usefulness of a good pocket knife!
Overall, not exactly a beefy, tough, heavy knife. The handle feels lighter than just about anything I’ve seen and because of no metal liner in the handle, the blade is a bit wobbly (side to side). It wouldn’t be my choice for any serious outdoor tasks on a campsite or survival scenario that’s for sure! However, that is not to say there are no good qualities to this knife! Read on!
- Weight: 2.4 oz
- Overall length: 7.5 inches
- Blade length: 3-1/8 inches
- Blade Material: 420 HC
- Blade Hardness: 58 HRC
- Handle Material: injection molded plastic
- Opening: Thumb studs, manual operation
- Lanyard hole
The blade is made of 420 HC steel which is approaching the wear resistance of high carbon and the corrosion-resistance of stainless. It features Buck’s proprietary heat-treat process. That’s the good news! The bad news (well, not super-bad) is that the blade itself looks a bit tarnished and used – even when it’s 100% brand new and unused! The finish looked like it was supposed to be shiny, but somehow oxidized and got a bit darker. Then, somehow a thousand tiny marks that look like mini-scratches are visible on the blade surface as well! After some thought, I think that was not a mistake, but a deliberate result of some finishing or manufacturing process. It’s really not a big deal though – just thought I’d mention it!
It’s also a drop-point blade with a bit of a hollow grind.
- We love the Buck Forever warranty which we think is as good as it gets in the industry.
- It has a removable clip if you don’t use it, but unfortunately, it’s not reversible in any way.
- It features a very solid mid-lock back mechanism.
- It’s made of a decent steel that is excellent quality for the price.
- Fully made in the USA (love this one).
- Gimping on the handle is in two locations to accommodate two different grips.
- Thumb studs on both sides of the blade with overall good look and feel.
- The opening of the blade was a bit sticky and felt like a bit too much friction. The engineering on this issue could be a bit better.
- While very light, the injection-molded handle feels like a cross between styrofoam and plastic. It has a cheap feel to it and I always feel like it could break at any moment.
- If you’re using it for heavier-duty tasks, you’ll notice there’s a slight movement of the blade side to side – though it’s minimal and still feels pretty solid.
- The blade is not beautifully finished.
- There are no steel liners in the handle for stability and durability.
The mid-lock back mechanism can release during a backward grip (see video below). Though this is unlikely to happen to most people, it has happened to owners of this knife in the past.
Okay, fine! I can understand if you like the knife but hate the color! If so, you’re in luck! Why? Here is your passport to every color combo you can imagine! Have FUN!
The Buck 285 Bantam Mossy Oak Pink Camo knife is an overall decent buy. It’s not my favorite knife, but at its price point, I wouldn’t complain at all! If the price was higher, I’d make a bigger deal of its shortcomings, but with a $25 price tag, I’m happy to get it for my girl or for my car (assuming I don’t already have 3 in my glove box and car door!)
One Last Thing!
Amazon carries this knife on and off and if you check it out and it’s not available, I might suggest (if you have the budget) to up your game and give a serious gift in this alternative pink Buck knife! It’s the Buck 110 Folding Hunter Custom Pink Pearl Corelon Pocket Knife or you can check out the Buck Knives 283 Nano Bantam Folding Pocket Knife