We were talking about our latest delivery of folding-blade knives from CRKT, admiring the lovely way in which the blades open and close, when somebody said “these are lovely Genticles”.
There was absolute silence around the office.
“What did you call them?”
So we Googled the word, and then wished we hadn’t. After our colleague had recovered from being laughed at, he explained that “Genticle” is actually the term used by renowned knife designer Ken Onion to describe Every Day Carry (EDC) knives that bring the smooth lines of a gent’s pocket folder with the useful chunkiness of a tactical knife. These were, clearly, Gent’s Tacticals knives, but that’s a bit of a mouthful, so, “Genticles” they became.
There’s nothing new about the design of a genticle, they’ve been around for a few years in the shape of the much-missed Kershaw Chive and Leek as designed by Ken Onion himself (these assisted-opening knives are no longer allowed into the United Kingdom), but there are plenty of other genticles available here in the UK at Heinnie Haynes. We’d define a genticle as a fairly high-end gent’s tactical folder, using top quality materials for the blade and handle, produced in relatively small production runs.
The Heinnie Haynes website allows you refine your search for the perfect knife by specifying the attributes in which you are interested. For example, you can choose Folding Blade Knives, and then refine by price, then blade length. This search, we suggest, shows you the range of knives which could be described as “genticles”. How about the Spartan Blades Nymph to start you off, or the wonderfully proportioned, titanium lattice LionSteel TiDust.
The production knife makers are no strangers to “dressing up tactical [knives]”, as Spyderco put it, recognising the recent popularity of being able to carry a well perfoming tool without it appearing off-putting at first glance. Spyderco have a number of genticle-friendly designs, such as the long awaited Spyderco PITS, the Dice or the Techno.
Have a browse around heinnie.com, and see what takes your fancy, after all every gent needs their genticle.