Different Types of Spring Assisted Mechanisms/Releases
There are three (count ‘em 1-2-3) different release mechanisms for the Spring Assisted knives; Thumb Stud, Spine Flipper, and OTF ‘Slider’.
The most common spring assisted opening mechanism is the Thumb Stud. No, I’m not referring to a devilishly good looking hand model but to the small, round piece of metal protruding from the blade of your knife. These are found on both manual and spring assisted knives.
Up and rising in popularity, my personal favorite, the Spine Flipper. As the name suggests it is located on the spine and ‘flips’ your knife open. This mechanism is as close to being automatic you can get without actually being automatic!
There are two different styles of the Spine Flipper:
Most Spine Flippers are actually part of the blade. The blade is cut in such a way that a dull segment of it pokes out of the spine near the pivot. Knives with this Spine Flipper as part of the blade most likely will have a Thumb Stud as well, giving you the rare choice to decide “How do I want to open my knife today?”.
Smith and Wesson uses what they call the M.A.G.I.C. on their SWBLOP3. This Spine Flipper is a trigger versus being part of the blade. Push down on the trigger and a lever makes the spring does the rest of the hard work for you!
Last, but not least, the Spring Assisted OTF. These knives have a ‘Slider‘ attached to the blade and must be retracted manually. Push the slider up, the spring takes over and *SHINK* ejects the blade. Pull the slider all the way down and *Ssshhhh-click* the blade locks closed.
by “Monty” Cox