Kershaw Innuendo, by Pat Cascio

In my 29 years of testing and writing about knives (and firearms) I have always been on the lookout for the next “big” thing in these products. And, let’s be honest here. It is really hard to find something new and unique to write about, especially when it comes to cutlery. All knives have one major function, and that is to cut something – pure and simple.

I used to design knives, and still do, to a certain extent – and it is difficult to find a new style or design to come up with. Once again, all cutlery has one major purpose, and that is to cut something. Of course, I know more than a few people, who still tend to use a knife blade as a pry bar, and then when the tip of the blade breaks off, they don’t know why!

There’s a lot to be said about “style” when it comes to knives, if the design of the knife isn’t appealing to the buyer, they will just pass it up. So, when a knife company decides to come out with a new design, it takes a lot of thought. In this case, the Kershaw Knives Innuendo folder was a collaboration between custom knife designer and maker Les George, and Kershaw. And, just because something looks a little different doesn’t mean it will be a hot seller as many believe. One more thing to take into consideration is the price point. A good knife doesn’t have to cost a lot of money – and “good” is the key word.

The Innuendo folder was designed in the USA, and manufactured in Mainland China. So if that bothers you, then you can skip reading the rest of this review article. Sadly, this shows us consumer market forces at work.  Most buyers are not willing to pay for American-made knives, even if they are mass-produced. The production costs are simply too high. So a good portion of the knives sold by American companies are designed in the U.S., but produced overseas.

When I received the Innuendo for testing, it kinda caught my attention, but it didn’t scream to me “pick me up!”  But once I did pick it up, I couldn’t put it down. There is just “something” about this folder that I didn’t want to put it back in the box, to test at some other time. Of course, with any product, the company provides more than enough “hype” about their product, and they want you to believe every word they put in print. I don’t buy into that. I never have. I’ll be the judge of how good a product is, during my testing of it.

First off, the price point on the Innuendo, it’s only $59.99 – and if you shop around on the ‘net, you will find it for less money – that’s a good thing. You honestly don’t have to spend a lot of money, to get a lot of knife.

The Specifications

Now, for the specifications: The blade is only a tad over 3-inches, and is made out of 9C13MoV stainless steel. That is a decent blade steel that holds an edge a good long time, and is easy to re-sharpen as well. I tend to pull a pocket knife out of my pocket at the end of the week, and touch-up the blade’s edge – by doing this, it is easy to keep a razor sharp edge on the knife. Plus, being stainless steel, it will hold up to some harsh weather – keep in mind that, stainless steel, can still rust – it just means it takes longer to rust. For further rust protection, the Innuendo’s blade is coated with Titanium carbo-nitride for an even tougher coating. The blade opens easily – very easily – with the thumb disk.

There is a reversible deep-pocket clothing clip on the handle for right or left pocket carry – nice touch! The blade is a drop point style, one of the most popular designs for many uses as well. This folder is only available in a plain edge – no serrations – and that’s not a deal-breaker in my book. The lock-up of the blade is via frame lock, one of the most popular designs out there. The handle is silver-colored steel, and very eye catching. Plus there is a lifetime limited warranty from Kershaw.

When I first started writing about knives, I used to test them to destruction – and every knife, sans one, could be destroyed under the right circumstances. There is an old saying “give it to a Marine, and they’ll find a way to destroy or break something, and that is worth noting…LOL! Most knives are designed to do certain tasks, and some do it better than others. My own, the OC3 fixed blade is a double-edge fighting knife that was designed to be used in Close Quarters Combat (CQC) circumstances. It did that task with ease. However, I heard from a number of users who used this fighting knife as a hunting knife, and they really loved the double edge blade, they didn’t have to stop and touch it up, when dressing out big game. So, no matter what a knife is designed for, it can and often does, double at other tasks.

My Tests

I didn’t abuse the Innuendo in any way, just used it around my small homestead, for various cutting tasks. While it worked “okay” in the kitchen, for preparing some meals, it wasn’t outstanding – no surprise there. At the dinner table, it did a good job of cutting up whatever was on my plate that needed cutting. When outside performing some homestead chores, it did great at cutting up things.

Of course, I did my usual testing, and that consisted of cutting thick, yellow poly rope, and if a knife doesn’t have a super-sharp blade, it will simply slide right off this material. It is akin to trying to cut thick rope that is wet. And, I know many of you are tired of hearing how a knife does on blackberry vines, but it is still a great test. Blackberry vines are very fibrous, and touch to cut through. My testing consists of trying to cleanly slice right through a thick blackberry vine, with a single swipe – some big knives have a difficult time – if they don’t have a sharp blade. The Innuendo easily sliced through a vine, without any problems. It passed that test.

I carried the Innuendo for two weeks, and it was my main knife for cutting tasks, especially cutting open heavy duty cardboard boxes. This is one of the toughest materials on a knife’s edge – it will dull a blade in no time at all. I was on a roll, and in two weeks, I received a lot of packages for UPS, FedEx, and USPS that needed to be cut open. My oldest daughter also had a number of boxes to open, and she asked to use the Innuendo – and had no problems – I just kept reminding her to not cut too deeply, for fear she’d cut whatever was inside the boxes – she had no problems at all.

Stabbing the folder into stacked cardboard was no challenge, as it stabbed up to the handle without any trouble. Needless to say, with all the packages I get, I always have plenty of cardboard to stab for this portion of the tests. Newsprint and copy paper are another good test, I could easily shave thin portions of paper off of a larger piece of paper with no problem at all.

Some time was spent, slicing pieces of cardboard, to see how long the little folder would hold an edge. I didn’t sit there for hours on end doing this, just every time I thought about it. I really did a lot of slicing, and it took quite some time before the blade’s edge started to get a little dull. When it became a chore to slice the cardboard, I stopped. I took the folder to a set of Croc Stix to put an edge back on the knife, and in less than two minutes, the blade was ready to go again.

The Innuendo is a delight to use, and if you are looking for a folder, that won’t break the checking account, then you should check one out. It is a lot of knife, for a little bit of money. It would make a great gift for Dad, or for that matter Mom or a spouse. It doesn’t scream “tactical” when you pull it out of your pocket like many folders do.

If the looks alone don’t sell you on this nice little folder, once you pick it up, it will be hard to put down. So, you might as well make up your mind, before you pick it up, that you will purchase it – it really is “that” good of a little folder. And if worse comes to worse, if you lose it, you won’t be out a lot of money, either. So, go online and check out the Innuendo, and shop around for the best price – many big box stores often carry a good selection of Kershaw knives – fixed blade and folders. It’s just a lot of knife, for a very little amount of money. You’ll be surprised!