If you forced us to pick a single replaceable blade knife as our favorite, we’d have to go with the Gerber’s EAB. Granted, it is not a hunting or full size everyday carry replacement, but this pint-sized wonder could easily become your most used knife. It’s definitely ours.
The EAB Lite uses strong, sharp, and ubiquitous contractor utility blades. Better yet, like the replacement blades you will feed the tiny Gerber; the knife itself is insanely affordable. You can even use it as a money clip if you’re not a fan of wallets. You know, since you saved all of that cash buying this little guy.
At 2.8 inches closed it’s nice and compact. Additionally, the EAB’s stainless body will keep it looking great for years to come. Even if you abuse it. We highly recommend picking one up. In fact, we owe this little knife a debt of gratitude. Like a dedicated bodyguard, the EAB jumps in save more expensive knives from taking a hit when the cutting gets tough.
Its form factor is much better than its counterparts at the lumber yard. However blade replacement is more of a chore. When the blade dulls from breaking down boxes and cutting things with reckless abandon… you’ll have to use a small screwdriver to remove, or flip, the blade to a fresh one.
Aside from the slightly inconvenient blade change, there aren’t many problems. The price is incredibly low and the clip helps you avoid losing the tiny tool in a pocket. If we absolutely had to find fault… maybe it’s that the size makes it slightly less ergonomic when you’re going to town on a cache of Amazon Prime boxes.
We’ve relied on a 100 pack of replacement blade from Stanley for almost 12 months. And despite our best efforts we’ve barely made a dent in the supply. And, we’ve made quite an effort. Every week we break large boxes down to optimize recycle bin space. After a year only about a third of the blades in the dispenser have been… dispensed. The best part. The 100 blades cost less than 20 bucks and have saved our EDCs from a lot of wear and tear.
When our supply of Stanley blades runs thin we will probably go with an even more affordable option. These workpro blades are about two thirds the cost of the first we mentioned. Go this route and you can buy the Gerber and 100 blades for next to nothing.
When we order the next batch we also plan to grab a five pack of high end utility blades to see if we can justify the huge price increase over cheaper options. As of right now we’re pretty skeptical, but they have really good reviews on Amazon. So we’re hoping to be blown away by thier performance.
Finally, we’ll mention that there are now ceramic utility blades. They don’t get the best reviews but that could be because they’re fairly new. We didn’t even know they existed until we started shopping for strange blades on Amazon (FYI… these are the strangest we found).
Ceramic is less likely to dull than even high end steel so the concept makes sense. However, early ceramic kitchen knives did have a bit of trouble when they first hit the market. And, ceramic EDC folders are growing in popularity so maybe these actually deserve a look. We’ll shelve a full review until we’ve exhausted our current and next 100 blades.