The price of any gear reviewed on The Loadout Room is usually one of the final talking points, but with Outdoor Edge’s Le Duck, it’s one of the things that make this knife a great recommendation. The Le Duck is the epitome of what a good budget knife should be. Low-cost manufacturing shouldn’t equate to an inferior design, nor should it be synonymous with cutting corners. Trade-offs are to be expected but should be minimal. A budget knife can still be a quality knife that inspires confidence from its owners.
- Blade: 2.5” / 6.4cm
- Overall: 6.25” / 16.0cm
- Steel: 8Cr13MoV Stainless with Blackstone™ coating
- Rockwell-C Hardness: 57
- Handle: Rubberized TPR
- Sheath: Polypropylene
- Lanyard: Black 550 Paracord
- Weight: 3.0oz / 85g
Specifications courtesy of Outdoor Edge
Outdoor Edge is a hunting brand that specializes in a variety of different knife styles. I like their Le Duck knife for what it is, a small and easy to carry utility knife that can also be worn as a neck knife. The Le Duck doesn’t have gimmicks and offers satisfaction through its simplicity. The Le Duck is a slim knife that can be easily concealed and is very ergonomically designed. It not only fits comfortably in the hand; the rubberized handle and jimping across the spine help to maintain a secure grip on the knife. 8Cr13MoV may be an average steel but this doesn’t mean it’s a bad choice by Outdoor Edge. While 8Cr13MoV steel may not have the best edge retention, it is very easy to sharpen. The decision to use a budget steel is why the Le Duck can be purchased online for less than $25. For its price, you won’t find a multi-purpose as well designed as the Le Duck.
My one and only gripe with the knife has nothing to do with the actual knife itself but rather its sheath. The sheath utilizes an active retention latch, which isn’t something I dislike, but its design can interfere with your draw. Drawing your knife isn’t just the act of pulling the knife out of its sheath; a good draw means achieving and maintaining the same grip on the handle while pulling the knife out as you would have while actually using the knife. A poor draw is one that requires you to shift your grip as you pull it out of its sheath. Since the locking latch opens towards the handle, your fingers can get in the way of opening it. This challenges the concept of a quick-release knife. However, this is easily forgivable as all of the other features about the knife make it great, especially its low cost.
As I said earlier, the Le Duck is the epitome of what a budget knife should be. Its rubber handle, blade steel, and carrying sheath may be basic but the knife lacks nothing in regard to performance and ergonomic design. Countless superior knives do exist but inexpensive knives that are worth carrying and capable of accomplishing many tasks are seldom found. Outdoor Edge’s Le Duck is a great pick-up for those looking for a lightweight backup knife to carry or throw in your bag. MSRP for the Le Duck is $34.95 but can be found for less from online retailers.
*All photos courtesy of the author, Matt Jin