SOG Kiku XR folding flipper pocket knife EDC
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This is a knife I shouldn’t like very much. I prefer to carry something smaller. A knife that’s lighter and more pocketable. I tend to like slim, no-frills drop point blades. My EDC needs don’t usually extend much beyond opening a cardboard box with a grin printed on it or maybe slicing through the packaging on a new piece of gear to review.

And yet . . .

SOG Kiku XR folding flipper pocket knife EDC

Despite myself, I really love this knife. The SOG Kiku XR flipper is a beefy, solid, substantial folding knife that’s beautifully sculpted to fill the hand.

SOG Kiku XR folding flipper pocket knife EDC

SOG Kiku XR folding flipper pocket knife EDC

No, it isn’t a drop point. SOG calls the Kiku XR’s blade shape a “modified tanto.” OK then. I’m not big on recurved blades. They tend to complicate sharpening. But I haven’t had a problem putting or keeping a wicked edge  on the Kiku.

That blade is made of CTS-XHP steel which is like a much more corrosion-resistant D2. That means it takes an edge easily and holds it well without D2’s tendency to rust.

SOG Kiku XR folding flipper pocket knife EDC
The Kiku XR has a reversible deep carry pocket clip.

The ‘XR’ in Kiku XR means the knife locks up with SOG’s now-standard XR locking system (think Benchmade Axis). It’s about as convenient and easy-to-use for simple one-handed operation as it gets. The knife flips open effortlessly and sliding the XR lock lever rearward closes the blade using only gravity.

SOG Kiku XR folding flipper pocket knife EDC

And then there are those scales. The Kiku sports thoughtfully sculpted linen micarta. G10 can be nice when done well, but every knife should have micarta scales…at least as far as I’m concerned.

Those smoothly contoured scales make this knife more comfortable in the hand than any other folding knife of its size and weight I own. It’s just a joy to hold and use in any position.

SOG Kiku XR folding flipper pocket knife EDC

Size wise, the Kiku XR may look bigger than it is. Folded, it’s about the same size as a Spyderco Delica (4.3 inches vs 4.25). But open it up . . .

SOG Kiku XR folding flipper pocket knife EDC
With its slightly longer 3.03″ blade, the Kiku XR has a 7.3″ open length.

…and you see how substantial a knife this really is. The Kiku is no lightweight. It weighs a full 5.6 oz (exactly twice the heft of the more diminutive Delica) and that’s with the Kiku’s liners partially drilled to save some mass.

That blade is 3.8mm thick. That means it will stand up to a lot of abuse (and I’ve abused it fairly well in the last six months).

In short, the Kiku XR has become one of my favorite knives in spite of what I usually like in an EDC blade. I carry it much more often that I expected to. It’s so well designed and performs so smoothly, I just can’t help but like virtually everything about it.

You will, of course, pay for all the Kiku’s features, intelligent design, and materials. It retails for about $145. That’s not inexpensive. But if you need a tough, do-just-about-anything folder that you’ll love to use and won’t mind slipping in your pocket every morning, it’s well worth it.

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  1. I have a couple of knives made with D2 steel and of good quality. That have assisted opening and blade lock. Together they didn’t cost $145.

  2. This knife is a near clone of my everyday carry knife. Except my son gave it to me for Christmas(& it was probably 10 bucks. Not a flipper.). Legal in ILLANNOY is 3″ but the law is purposely vague🙄🙃

  3. My Kershaw Ken Onion Blur ran away from home so I purchased a Milwaukee D2 three-inch folder for $64 as well as a four-inch folder ($36) for my tool bucket. I like the 3″ model for EDC. It is comfortable to hold, opens easily, and cuts things that I ask it to cut. Takes a lot of punishment, too. Maybe that”s why my Ken Onion left home. It has a green handle and a few scratches. If you see it, please tell It I apologize and promise to be nicer if it comes back.

    • BTW, my comments are not meant to disparage the SOG. Looks like a great knife, just more money than I want to spend.

  4. Dan, another good article. Sure you didn’t want to spread these out over the week? That said. Point below the spine if the blade? It’s a drop point. My favorite for game and general carry.

    • big time.
      although your sebenza is a clip point?
      mine is the insingo, slightly bellied wharny.

  5. It’s such a weird pocket clip.
    Does it sit crooked in your pocket? I just don’t understand. Pocket clips can ruin a $1 knife the same way they can ruin a $1,000 knife. This is one of them.

    • It looks like the angle of the clip would force it to the back of your pocket which would be perfect.

    • I have this knife, fits in my front pocket perfectly. Doesn’t get held up when I take it out. It’s a solid knife I’m happy with mine. Plus it just fits the legal limit for concealed blade length where I live.

  6. “My EDC needs don’t usually extend much beyond opening a cardboard box with a grin printed on it or maybe slicing through the packaging on a new piece of gear to review.”

    Talk about first-world problems. 🙂

    {Scrolling through the pictures…}

    Dan, by any chance did you find that Delica in a parking lot in central Florida that has a seedy adult book store, by any chance? 😉

  7. Oh, good news for Floridians, the Leftist Scum ™ are packing their luggage and *leaving* :

    “Leftist Parents Flee Florida As Gender Treatments For Children Made Illegal”

    “It really is a brilliant strategy on the part of conservative states. As the political left goes further into ideological extremism they become more and more intolerant of restrictions on their behavior, which they view as righteous and sacrosanct. Zealotry breeds brittleness, meaning, any enforcement of practical and reasonable standards, even those protecting children, will drive leftists insane and make them want to leave.”

    Save your state that you love, by passing similar legislation…

    *snicker* 😉

      • Awesome!
        I hate the way these pricks twist language.
        “Gender affirming care”, “Reproductive Health Care” Screw them!

        • Twisting language is one of the essential elements of communists and their handmaidens, the critical theorists.

          Don’t buy into their terms, call their behavior and ideas what they actually are. In your example, they’re seeking to recruit children for their perversions and kill infants.

          Simple, direct, language moves you out of their debate base and back into your debate base.

    • offshore, it is taiwan made.
      s35vn is good stuff, sog seems to suggest that it is assisted opening- i’ve kind of grown away from that. in use all that belly with the recurve can work well. recurve is nice for draw strokes… i have no desire to keep a grind that complicated sharpened. a mah long eraser is reverse tanto, not this. micarta is sweet, tghe sculpting looks great. i carry cargo so this (5oz+) would bang around and slide over constantly. beefy fricken grind reminds me of a friends zero tolerance. that said it’s fixed for me for stout (bk24, white river backpacker, blackjack 155), rotation of folders to compliment.

  8. Mama says any Recurve is from the devil. Hard pass for that alone. Plus the blade is way too thick unless you only cut paper. Plus it’s way too heavy. Plus the grip is one big hot spot. Plus they won’t let me carry that in the mall, which is the only place that POS belongs.

    • Your momma was wrong about the medulla oblongata so you could probably carry this wherever you want. Stop with the momma says already.

  9. Sleek and simple? NOT
    Price 145$$, for china? NOT
    Re curve blade? NOT
    Looks tacticool and will impress the boys on football sunday? YES
    Sculpted scales/handles are for fixed blades, a waste on EDC folders.
    Just my opinion, been carrying a knife since the 4th grade, back when everyone had a blade of some form in the pocket usually some type/brand of stockman for the boys and a small pen knife for the girls.
    Yeah, call me fudd, so what, don’t care.
    Nice to see some knife articles though, thanks!

  10. Please stop with the ole’ Taiwan = Commie China crap already. Sure, “made in America”…fine, but Taiwan just ain’t China…yet.

    • Since most of you don’t deal with machine tools, I’ll not only echo this comment, but amplify on it.

      The difference between Taiwanese-made machine tools and ChiCom made machine tools is huge.

      A ChiCom lathe is mostly a collection of metal parts from which you might eventually be able to make a working lathe.

      A Taiwanese lathe is an actual lathe on delivery, but not built to the “brick outhouse” standards of old American machine tool iron.

  11. Looks cool to me, and recurves aren’t that hard to sharpen. I too am a fan of linen micarta scales. I think the complaints about how much it cost are just sour grapes of those that can’t afford to spend that much on a knife. I’ve spent more than that on a knife, I’ve been gifted a knife that cost way more than that. And I’ve bought WalMart $5 knives when flying with no checked luggage, because they were essentially disposable.

    I do agree with stop confusing Taiwan with the ChiComs, it’s just ignorant at best and virulently stupid at worst.

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