SOG Twitch II
SOG Twitch II Review Facts
There are some people in the world who find themselves in need of a simple knife throughout their day. This is called an every-day use knife, or EDU. Having an easy-open yet safe, sharp and compact folding knife is a convenient and practical answer to this need. Cut and dry, the SOG Twitch II is a perfectly good way to fill this need with no fuss and no muss. If you find yourself in a position of need, the SOG Twitch II can probably fill that need, but you can be the judge of that for yourself.
Editor's Pros & Cons
Straight, easy to re-sharpen edge
S.A.T. lock-back system
Sleek aluminum scales
Small enough to carry in a pocket
Opening has been reported as sticky when new
State of California P65 warning
Like every other knife in existence, the purpose of the SOG Twitch II is to cut things. Everything beyond that is just a specialization of the action of cutting. Depending upon the version of the Twitch II you purchase – and where you purchase it from - it could be listed as an everyday use knife or a hunting knife. Officially, though, it is considered by SOG to be an EDU tool with a note that it is also usable outdoors, so that is officially how it is going to be considered and listed for the purposes of this review. A full list of uses for this knife would be a mile long but suffice it to say that if you can think of a situation in which you had to reach for a pair of scissors or a knife in your yard or at work or throughout your house, you could likely use the Twitch II to serve at least some of those purposes.
In any of its available versions, the SOG Twitch II bears the same drop point shaped blade with a straight edge made of Aus-8 high grade stainless steel that is cryogenically heat treated to RC 57-58. There was a mention of a serrated option, but if it did exist it seems to have become hard to find, so you probably should not count on finding one. If you need serration, the best recommendation is to seek out another knife in the SOG family. The blade on the SOG Twitch II is one tenth of an inch thick and reaches a little more than two and a half inches long. Having a straight edge makes the SOG Twitch II easy to re-sharpen as needed, and most reports express good edge retention. It will cut anything in your day-to-day life, unless you happen to be a lumberjack, and look good doing it.
There are not many accessories listed for the SOG Twitch II. It will fit in most standard belt pouches, provided you consider the length of the knife (when closed) for sizing purposes, but it does not have one single intentionally paired pouch design, sold separately or otherwise, according to the SOG website. Truth be told, you may want to skip the pouch altogether, seeing as the Twitch II comes standard with a belt clip bolted to one side. The only other sort of accessory you might consider is not any sort of extra attachment or piece – it is more of a customization, really. Depending on where you go to purchase this knife, you could have the blade engraved. Beyond that, there is not much else you need to add on to this knife, and there is not much readily available. Most times, accessories are not intended for a pocket knife when it is this level of self-sufficient, or this simplistic. Other knives might have more blade diversity, such as serrations or other shapes available; there could be other knives that have more than ten handle materials to choose from. These are all well and good, but the fact remains that at the end of the day, you will still have one knife in your pocket, no matter what color the handle is, or which shape the point is. Just make sure that your knife is suiting your needs, and the rest will sort itself out.
Every knife worth its salt is hardened through a heat treatment process. In this case, the high-grade stainless steel is heat treated through a cryogenic process, leaving the hardness rating around RC57-58 and its edge retention impressive. There have been some reports of losing its edge more rapidly than other EDU knives of the same classification, but with such re-sharpening ease there is little reason to discount the Twitch II on those grounds alone. Additionally, the more prominently available versions of this knife have a metal handle, making it incredibly sturdy. The attached clip means it can be worn low, into the pocket, and taken everywhere you go with ease. (Please note this in no way means it is allowed everywhere – know what is allowed where you go, when you try to bring a knife of any kind with you.) While there is no real way to judge a lifespan of a blade’s edge or a belt clip’s ability to stand up to being bumped or scraped as you walk around a construction site or a cramped basement or garage, it can be surmised that this knife stands up to normal wear and tear. Part of knowing a knife’s lifespan comes from understanding its primary use and what that will mean for frequency of maintenance. If you find yourself opening and closing this knife about a hundred times per day, you may find you need to tighten or oil the pivot more often than someone who only uses their knife ten times per day. On the other hand, if you only open this knife ten times a day or less, and you find yourself dealing with issues that bring the quality of your knife into question, know that you have every right to look into the whys of such problems and possibly find a solution. Just be realistic in your expectations and know what you are planning on using this knife for when you shop.
Lightweight is the general descriptor that comes to mind when referring to the Twitch II, because this knife weighs a grand total of 2.6 ounces. Its overall length is less than six and a half inches when open – three and a half inches when closed. The sleek design of this straight edged drop point is light and comfortable to wield. Some users reported the knife feeling a bit on the heavy side for its classification, but also noted that they considered it a good thing that the knife had a bit more “oomph” to it in that regard for bigger jobs like box-cutting, during their regular use with the Twitch II. The easiest way to decide for yourself if 2.6 ounces is a fault or feature is to handle the knife yourself. Heft it in your hand, open and close it, maybe even use it on something small or simple, all before buying if the seller allows, so that you can make a more informed decision about whether or the SOG Twitch II is right for your purposes. You may find that you want something even heavier; you may find that you prefer a lighter knife. Either of these is certainly easily obtainable – 2.6 ounces is not exactly an extreme in either direction in the way of pocket knives – but you will not know until you hold it. If you are buying online, you could always try to find another knife with similar parameters that you might already own, or maybe a friend or family member owns, to compare as best you can to what you are trying to buy.
The standard finish of the SOG Twitch II blade is satin. The handle comes in three basic options. The anodized aluminum handle, a machined aluminum 6061-T6 with an anodized coating, comes in graphite on the standard satin blade. There is also a black coloration of the aluminum handle, and that wields a black-colored blade for a uniform appearance. The third most common option, a rosewood handle, also bears a satin finish blade. Every option’s individual appearance offers the same double-sided thumb studs to aid in the single-handed opening capability that this brand is known for. It is possible that you may come across some other appearances in finish or handle color, material, or style while shopping for a SOG Twitch II. While the three mentioned here are the only ones on the official site, it is possible that older or discontinued options with different features might be out there in the world. Do your homework and always look for that SOG insignia on the base of the blade, right near the thumb studs. That will tell you that your knife is authentic.
The most important thing of note in terms of general safety when referring to the SOG Twitch II is the California State P65 warning – a warning issued by that state government about exposure to carbon-black extracts and benzene and their concerns with the effects of being exposed to those chemicals. More information can be found at www.P65Warnings.ca.gov for those who want to do more research before purchasing a SOG Twitch II. Beyond the aforementioned warning, the safety features for this knife are another matter entirely, so the focus will shift there. The handling safety of a pocket knife is in no small part contributory to the mechanism by which is stays open or closed, because if that mechanism is not properly developed then the knife could open or close at an inopportune time or place, such as mid-cut or in your pocket. In this case, the SOG Twitch II utilizes a lock-back mechanism, which means a locking bar with spring tension is responsible for holding the knife open. It also uses the branded SOG Assisted Technology, also known as the S.A.T. which helps the knife open. The high-tension coil springs propel the knife open once you use the thumb stud or knife kick-back to initiate the opening motion. Once you start to open the knife, the force and tension that are holding the knife closed are quickly outweighed by the force and tension of you opening the blade, thus springing it open faster than simply opening a hinged knife without any sort of mechanical assistance designed for aid. Some users even reported it as opening more swiftly than a switchblade-style knife. Once the knife is open, it is locked into position with an additional safety lock to avoid accidental closure during use. While closed, the tension keeping it closed is strong enough to hold the spring tension at bay, and it remains safely in the closed position. When new, the Twitch II has been known to be stiff upon opening, even to the point of requiring two hands or a tightness adjustment and oiling, but once you break it in, all is usually well. If you can handle the knife before purchasing it, be sure to test opening and closing it for safety and comfort. If you order online and have it shipped to you, obviously you cannot test it pre-purchase, but you can test it immediately once you open the box. If you can’t break it in comfortably, most times SOG will hear your complaint and issue an exchange or refund. If you purchase from a different retailer, their returns or exchanges policy might not match up, so be sure to gain as much information as possible before your purchase, just in case.
This handy little pocket knife is a good find for anyone. It can retail in the $50-$70 range, depending on which particulars and options you choose from, but shopping around your local area or other retailers online might yield a delightful under-MSRP find. Take a walk, have a look around, window shop (literally and virtually) and see what you can find out there, if anything. Of course, not every mom and pop shop will offer engraving or the returns and exchanges policy that SOG offers directly, so if that is something you consider important, it might be worth it to pay the higher price tag. Use your common sense when shopping and ask whatever shop you may be in what their returns or exchange policies are. Do your homework and be a smart shopper. If you want a knife quickly, you might be willing to forego any sort of warranty or guarantee that SOG might offer you, but if you know you are going to be using this tool often and want that backup in your back pocket, know that sometimes you get what you pay for. Know the score and you cannot be taken advantage of. Whether or not a certificate of authenticity would exist for non-SOG stores is unclear, but it cannot hurt to ask even at the local shop that is only in your area. Due diligence is your friend.
-Drop point, straight edge
-EDU and outdoor capable
-Durable aluminum handle
-Drop point, straight edge
-EDU and outdoor capable
-Durable aluminum handle
For those of us who are incredibly health conscious, the presence of a State Government warning might be a turn off in any kind of purchase, not just a knife or tool. There is no shame in being cautious, especially if there are other knives out that that are free of any such materials warnings. It is possible that California’s state warning is a blanket statement that might not apply if you purchase the rosewood handle option; it might be something that has to be posted for any product made of metal that is transported over state lines, and the health risks are so incredibly minuscule so as to be almost nonexistent. Whatever you are comfortable with is correct, and if you look into it and find that this is not the knife for you because of this, there is no shame in that. Safety needs to be taken seriously. That said, if you are comfortable and convinced that you are not in danger by owning a SOG Twitch II, however, there are plenty of other fellow wielders who will agree that this is a good buy. It is simple, sleek, safe, and thanks to the kick base and double-sided thumb stud, it is ambidextrous, which can be a very large selling point to some of the lefties out there looking for a sturdy and easy to use pocket knife. In any case, you can slip it into your pocket with the belt clip keeping it low and secure and go about your day, knowing it will be there when you need it. You might be surprised how often this little blade comes in handy, and even when all the wear and use causes the edge to dull, fear not because this Aus-8 stainless steel straight edge is a breeze to re-sharpen and get right back to using efficiently. As always, you are urged to be careful when wielding as sharp tool such as a pocket knife, even if you have handled blades or other dangerous items all your life. There is no shortcut for good safety practices, and, eventually, they will be your good habits so that you can use your SOG Twitch II confidently and without fail every time. Treat this handy little knife with care, and it will serve you well.