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The Schrade 152OT, more commonly referred to as the Schrade Sharpfinger is one of Schrade’s most iconic designs. The Sharpfinger was originally produced in 1974 and has been in production now for over 35 years. It’s distinctive blade shape has been copied by a number of knife makers, a testament to the knife’s enduring design.
Sharpfinger Background and History
The Sharpfinger is a small, full tang, fixed blade knife characterized by its upswept blade. The shape of the blade is ideal for caping and skinning, but is just as capable as a EDC knife. In fact, the Sharpfinger was famously carried by Sonny Barger, founder of the Hells Angels Motorcycle club. He liked carrying the Sharpfinger on his belt because he found it more accessible than a folding knife. You may appreciate that functionality too, although perhaps for different applications.
The upswept blade of the Sharpfinger is popular because it provides the cutting surface of a much larger knife, without the added bulk. With a 3.5″ blade, this really is an unassuming little knife, but what it lacks in stature it more than makes up with its razor sharp edge and classic design.
The Schrade Sharpfinger Today
Today a new Sharpfinger can be had quite inexpensively. Granted, these days it’s manufactured overseas, and I know some enthusiasts who won’t touch a non-USA made Schrade, but I still find it to be a very serviceable knife. I’m going to offer a brief review and give you my thoughts on this new generation of Schrade Sharpfingers.
The overall shape and dimensions of the knife are nearly identical to the old version. The steel used here is 440C, where the USA made Sharpfinger often used a proprietary steel that Schrade didn’t disclose (those were the days before the internet, and we couldn’t agonize over the different steels being used in our knives).
The handle is made of rectangular 2 slabs of saw cut delrin, compression rivited to the exposed tang. The edges of the handles are rounded and the knife has a nice feel to it. The arched spine and delrin handle provide nice ergonomics that keep the blade from slipping when you are working with the knife. I don’t have a US Sharpfinger to compare to, but I imagine the fit and finish of these knives is similar, with the upper hand going to the original USA made knives.
The sheath is pretty nice too, especially considering that the knife is selling for less than $15 on Amazon. It’s a simple leather sheath with a button clasp and a belt loop.
Where Can I Buy a Schrade Sharpfinger?
You can buy a Schrade Sharpfinger on Amazon. The Sharpfinger is currently eligible for free shipping on Amazon. Click here to buy a Schrade Sharpfinger on Amazon.
Where Can I read More Schrade Sharpfinger Reviews?
If you are interested in reading more Sharpfinger reviews by people who actually own the knife, I would suggest going to Amazon. Currently, they have 14 reviews to consider. Click here to read more Sharpfinger reviews.
If you are interested in the Sharpfinger, you may also want to check out it’s bigger cousin, the Schrade Deerslayer. In the article I provide an in-depth review and a comparison between it and the Sharpfinger.
Jerry Russell says
I have a Schrade OLD TIMER, USA 152 with the following engraved in the blade:
To SP/4 Harwood
From 3rd PLT
Can you tell me anythong about it?
Thanks for the comment. It looks like you may have a gift knife – perhaps one passed on through the military? I am not in the military but SP may stand for “Shore Patrol” (or something else – really I have no idea). 3rd PLT may stand for “3rd Platoon.”
Depending on how old the knife is it could be a pretty nice piece of history there! Either way I hope you carry it in good health. Thanks again for the excellent question and sorry I couldn’t be of greater assistance.
Dan Kelly says
In this case “SP” stands for the individual’s rank (Specialist 4)
I believe its Army. Rank specialist 4 name…Harwood from 3rd Platoon.
Michael Moore says
SP\4 equals Specialest 4, Harwood is the name of the Specialest, 3rd Platoon is his unit. Probably was given as a gift upon transfer or retirement, or some other awards ceremony. Search for US Army ranks (possibly Marine)
Thank you, Michael! Very interesting!
Dan Kelly says
Specialist is an Army rank only.
You can often by a USA made Schrade sharp-finger, for about thirty to fifty dollars on ebay, in various grades lightly used, sometimes I’ve found blade blanks from the old schrade factory, and put wood handle scales on them. I’ve loved that pattern since my early twenties, and had several of them. I’ve also had some that were schrimshaw/original, one stock with wood grips from schrade. Schrade used to make them with carbon steel blades, rustable, but easier to sharpen than stainless. Newer/younger USA Schrade did come with stainless. Gotta love them old USA Schrades, one of the saddest days when the factory closed it’s doors.
These are on sale at Walmart in a gift tin with a smaller folding knife for $11.
Thank you, Brian. For $11 that is an excellent deal.
dale Crabtree says
I have 5 sharpfingers. Mostly because I love its size and shape. I have both the American version and the Chinese version and have done my homework on Taylor Brands which purchased Schrade. They are the same product. All material is cut , heat treated in America and sent to two small towns in China where they are all assembled by hand. Its a labor issue although I hate the idea of sending jobs overseas All steel and scale material mainly comes from Pennsylvania. Just because its made in China doesn’t mean its inferior.
That is very interesting to hear about. Frankly I had no idea that the raw materials were prepped in the USA. I would have never guessed that.
Thanks dale, i was about to throw out my china made schrade when u read your post. If its assembled in china and all matetial made in USA, its all good for me.
Jacob L says
The one on Amazon sells for under $15. It says Schrade 1520T on the blade and the handle is made of a black resin-like material (resin has a non-slip grip). The blade is made of 7Cr17MoV Chinese Carbon Stainless Steel. I bought two of these knifes from Amazon.
See more info below on 7Cr17MoV Steel:
Ahonest Changjiang Stainless Steel Co., Ltd
Established in 1974, with more than 40 years development, ChangJiang Stainless Steel has become the largest high carbon stainless steel producer in China.
Note: This is the owner and manufacturer of 7Cr17MoV Steel.
Carbon Steel – generally made for rough use where toughness and durability is important. Common in survival knives and machetes. They take a sharp edge and are relatively easy to re-sharpen. The trade-off is being more prone to corrosion given the low chromium content. The most popular carbon knife steel is 1095.
Stainless Steel – basically carbon steel with added chromium to resist corrosion and other elements which increase performance levels but usually at the expense of inferior toughness. Easily the most popular category today and includes the 400, 154CM, AUS, VG, CTS, MoV, Sandvik and Crucible SxxV series of steels. Note that to qualify as a true stainless steel there must be at least 13% chromium.
Hardness is the ability to resist deforming when subject to stress and applied forces. Hardness in knife steels is often referred to as strength and is generally measured using the Rockwell C scale (aka “HRC”).
7Cr17MoV and its related steel types:
7CR17MoV: A Chinese Stainless steel that is similar in quality to AUS6 stainless steel. The following formula is a break down in the steel: 7CR part means it is 7% chromium and the 17MoV means .17% molybdenum and .17% Vanadium
AUS-6: Japanese stainless steel, roughly comparable to, if not slightly better than 440A (AUS-6, .65% carbon)
440A Stainless Steel: A common stainless steel considered good acceptable for every day use. It has good rust resistance, and holds a reasonable edge and sharpens easily. Carbon content is around .65-.75% Chromium is 16-18% and is around Molidium .75%. When a knife is marketed as 440 Stainless, this is the steel they mean. 440A has a maximum hardness of 56HRC
Elements and Info about them:
Increases hardness, tensile strength, and toughness.
Provides and increases resistance to wear and corrosion.
More than 11% makes it “stainless”, by causing an oxide coating to form.
Carbide inclusions reduce wear, but bulk material is softer.
Increases strength, hardness, hardenability, and toughness.
Improves machinability and resistance to corrosion.
Increases strength, wear resistance, and increases toughness.
Improves corrosion resistance by contributing to the oxide coating.
Carbide inclusions are very hard.
7cr17mov (and 440A): Work Knife, Daily use where corrosion resisitance is desired over long term edge retention
The Vanadium content in 7Cr17MoV makes it a closer steel to 440B or 440C than 440A. The carbon content more closely resembles that of 440A, but the added Vanadium apparently increases the heat treating and/or hardness capabilities.
STAINLESS Steels – http://www.agrussell.com/Steel_Guide/a/73/
Carbon (C) Manganese (Mn) Chromium (Cr) Nickel (Ni) Vanadium (V) Molybdenum (Mo) Tungsten (W) Cobalt (Co)
440A: 0.65-0.75 1.0 16.00-18.00 — — 0.75 — — 55-57
440B: 0.75-0.95 1.00 16.00-18.00 — — 0.75 — — 57-59
440C: 0.95-1.20 1.0 16.00-18.00 — — 0.75 — — 57-59
7Cr17: 0.60-0.75 ≤1.00 16.00-18.00 ≤0.60 — ≤0.75 — — 54-56
8Cr13MoV: 0.80 0.40 13.00 0.20 0.10 0.15 — — 58-59
7Cr17MoV has 3% more Chromium than the 8Cr14MoV, which contributes to greater hardness.
H1 steel has .15% carbon (1 tenth that of 440C), and typically has a HRC of 65-68. Sandvik 12C27 has less carbon (about half of what 440C has) than the 7Cr17MoV too, yet readily produces HRC 57-59. Each element alters the properties of the resulting steel, and ignoring their qualities or their quantity in a formula means a less than accurate assumption or opinion about its “grade”.
Thanks for the review. I just ordered one about an hour ago.
I ‘ve had a number of schrade old timers and I loved everyone of the from the sharp finger to the deer slayer I love the blade design It functions great in the field and at work and it keeps a fantastic edge I carry a sharp finger everyday I have China and USA models
James A. Ritchie says
Two things. First, no knife made in China uses what we in the West would call 440c. Chinese made knives use the Chinese equivalent of Western 440c, which has too little carbon and too much chrome to quality as even low grade Western 440c. It’s not horrible steel. It’s actually decent, but it is not 440c, and most companies that use it no longer mark their knives as being made of 440c. Now they call it by all sorts of names, but not 440c. These are the honest companies. Last I checked, Schrade is no longer calling it 440c, either.
As for 440a, same deal. China has it’s own designations for steel, and its own formulas, and they aren’t about to change just to suit knife companies from the United States. “440 stainless” is marked this way because it is not 440a by western standards. Again, it’s the Chinese equivalent of 440a, which is quite a bit different than the Western formula.
Despite what so many websites say, there is no such thing as 7cr17MoV. The “MoV” was added by China, and has never been shown to be what they say it is. At most, spectroscopic analysis shows .o4% vanadium in the steel, and that’s all that’s extra. .04% is not enough to affect the steel at all. More than half of all 7cr17MoV steel shows no vanadium at all.
That said, Chinese steel makers, even at the individual metallurgist level, are given a lot more leeway to arbitrarily fiddle with production steel than anywhere else I know. And they’re often extremely good at their jobs, which is why they have such permission. I’ve seen several examples of what was ostensibly 7cr17MoV that had an HRC of 58, and one example that had an HRC of 59.
The simple fact is that unless you do a spectroscopic analysis of every batch of 7cr17, MoV or not, you can’t be certain of what you’re getting. The good thing about this is that the worst of it is still up to standards, so you have nothing to lost buying this steel, and sometimes a lot to gain.
Most people seem to think everything coming out of China is crap, and that 440a, whether Western or Chinese, is junk steel. That’s complete nonsense, and no one who know anything about steel or knives would ever believe it. Part of the fault is marketing, as usual. You can’t sell a new steel if everyone believes their old steel is good enough. Part of the fault is YouTube where real information is often buried under a mountain of nonsense that goes round and round and round. Part of the fault belongs to a lot of cheap knife companies around the world that use 440a, but give it terrible heat treat and temper, and sometimes give it no heat treat and temper at all. The final fault belongs to knife makers in a number of countries, with Pakistan being the leading offender, that say the steel they use is 440a when it isn’t.
I’ve seen knives made there from scrap steel. Anything shiny went into the mix, they made knives from it, and there was no hint of heat treat and temper, but they still said the steel was 440a in order to make it sell better.
Anyway, through creative manufacturing [process, and creative heat treat and temper, China has a way of making steel do things we usually say are impossible for that steel to do or be. They have to be this way, or did before the rest of the world started making them rich over the last twenty years.
I have a friend in China who’s a metallurgist, and who covers the gamut of knife making. He oversees the production of the steel, then oversees the heat treat and temper of the knives made from the steel, and tests samples of the final product. And he does a lot of experimenting in every area. He sent me a knife not long ago. and asked me to test it. I did, and the steel was amazing. I’d trade any stainless we have for it.
When I asked him what the steel was he said he couldn’t tell me specifically, but that he started with 7cr17, and a couple of months later, ended with the steel he sent me. All he could tell me was that they added trace amounts of mew elements, how many or which ones he couldn’t say, and used a radically new manufacturing process, and then spent the better part of two months finding the best heat treat and temper. He did say they put the steel to sleep twice, once when it was being made, and again during the heat treat.
I know what this means, but I doubt anyone else does, except those who know my friend well. And it is a true innovation in manufacturing processes.
Anyway, I like 7cr17MoV as knife steel, even if it doesn’t actually exist. Too many out there think harder is always better, “sharper” is always better, and high the property and higher that property are always better. It’s very seldom true.
Hi James, Thanks for taking the time out to write such a detailed comment. When I wrote this review back in the day, I didn’t know as much about steel. You make some amazing points. Thank you for taking the time to contribute some thoughts to the thread.
Joe Biden says
It’s not 🚫 all about what type of steel the knife is. It’s all about the heat treatment…
Let's Go Brandon says
China made SharpFinger Knife is dirt cheap. I buy 2 or 3 @ the beginning of hunting season and throw the old ones away. these China made ones really holds an edge this way! I recommend giving this method try…
the China made ones are good for fishing, kitchen and or steak knife. I buy a couple of them @ the beginning of each hunting season. they are cheap. this way I don’t need to resharpen them. I gift out the old/used ones…
I have quite a few vintage Schrade USA Deerslayer and SharpFinger Knives. Yes they’re way better quality even the sheaths. I would be hard lucked to sell my vintage Schrade USA made carbon steel knives. next I’m buying me a couple Schrade Generational SharpFinger Knives. I suggest you do the same…
Let's Go Brandon says
I have a Schrade SharpFinger Knife with “FJB” engraved on the blade… what’s the supposed to mean?