The Gerber US-Assist S30V assisted opening knife is a well-built and handsome knife offering several key features for on-duty carry and use. Offering a high-quality steel blade, and Gerber’s impressive B.O.S.S. (Balls of Stainless Steel) bearing system, the US-Assist is a fast and smooth assisted-deploying knife.
The BlueSheepdog Crew are big supporters of duty carry knives for law enforcement and first responders. A small, but effective, pocket knife has many uses and solutions for commonly encountered street problems. The selection of a duty knife should be taken as seriously as any other duty gear, and not simply what is available or cheap. The proper duty knife should be sturdy, sharp, and capable of multiple functions. Features should be centered around professional use, and not merely collector or aesthetic appeals.
Gerber US-Assist Knife
The Gerber US-Assist knife is made with a 3.0 inch stonewashed CPM S30V steel blade with a plain razor edge or partially serrated option. The blade takes on a very traditional looking modified spear point design. There are dual thumb studs, on either side of the blade’s spine, for increased opening options. The thumb studs are ramped forward to reduce snagging potential while still providing a full thumb grip surface.
Housing the blade is a glass-filled nylon handle that has subtle indentions on each side where a crisscrossed etched pattern provides enhanced grip and aesthetic appeal. The use of glass-filled nylon has been increasingly popular in both the firearms and knife making markets. Glass-filled nylon is lightweight and has proven to be extremely durable and resistant to scratches. It is also resistant to exposure to the elements and some chemicals. There is a lanyard hole on the pommel as well.
One of the best features of the US-Assist is the inclusion of the Balls of Stainless Steel (B.O.S.S.) ball bearing technology. Gerber makes the bold claim the B.O.S.S. system provides Gerber’s smoothest, most consistent deployment action to date. The stainless steel balls reduce friction during the opening process and guide the blade to a seamless opening every time. The cage system of the B.O.S.S. is designed to keep the balls contained for stable performance over the long haul.
Another very important working knife feature is the US-Assist’s plunge-style locking mechanism. The metal plunger is designed to be pressed into action in either the fully open or fully closed position. This provides excellent safety while carrying or using the US-Assist. When the cross-bolt is deployed, the blade is locked into place and cannot be moved until the cross-bolt is slid out-of-the-way by the user. This safety system is very secure and requires a more positive application than simple cross-bar safeties that may not engage if the blade does not reach its fullest extension.
A slender skeletonized pocket clip completes the features on the US-Assist. The pocket clip can be mounted for a tip-up or tip-down carry method and is quickly changed out.
- High-quality CPM S30V blade steel
- Glass-filled nylon handle
- B.O.S.S. Tech stainless steel ball-bearing technology
- Ambidextrous assisted one-hand opening
- Plunge-lock with cross-bolt safety locks the blade in open or closed position
- Dual ramped thumb studs
- Scratch-resistant and removable pocket clip
- Tip-up or tip-down carry options
- Blade Material: CPM S30V
- Blade Finish: Stonewashed
- Blade Type: Razor fine edge
- Handle Material: Glass-filled nylon
- Overall Length: 7.2 inches
- Blade Length: 3.0 inches
- Closed Length: 4.2 inches
- Weight: 3.9 ounces
- Lock Type: Plunge-lock with cross-bolt safety (locks open or closed)
- MSRP: $119.00 (less than $80 here)
The Gerber US-Assist knife with B.O.S.S. stainless steel ball bearings and the plunge-lock cross-bolt safety is truly an impressive knife. While appearing rather simple and plain, the internal features of the US-Assist cause this assisted-opening knife to really shine.
Made from high-quality materials that will sustain repeated use and exposure, the US-Assist makes a strong statement to be an EDC duty knife. The blade is designed for long use while maintaining its sharpness and edge. The glass-filled nylon handle is lightweight and very durable. Dual thumb-studs provide easier ambidextrous opening options. The opening is glass smooth thanks to the B.O.S.S. stainless steel ball-bearing system, and the plunger cross-bolt safety is a huge bonus for safe carry and hard use alike.
While the knife is reasonably priced for its features, I realize not everyone will want to spend $80-120 for a folder. Good news – I have a lower-cost alternative. Click here to read my Kershaw Duojet review. The Duojet is not quite as nice as the Gerber, but you can get one for less than $25.