Knife Guards

Published September 1, 2007. From Cook's Illustrated.

Overview:

If you store your knives loose in a drawer, you're putting the sharp edge of your blades—and your reaching hands—in danger. Blade sheaths are designed to protect against both risks, and we wondered if one style protected better and was easier to use than another.

After some scary moments, we can safely say, yes. We rejected two models because they required "slicing" the knife into their slim, stiff polypropylene folds; what's more, a 1-inch depth barely covered our chef's knives. The magnetized model was also disappointing. It opened easily, like a book, but its cheap, tape-like seam easily peeled or tore away from the cover and shut awkwardly over bulkier knife heels. We preferred a polyproplylene model. Its snap closure and 2 1/2-inch depth accommodated a variety of chef's, slicing, and paring knives. While it was a bit hard to open, it kept sharp blades safely covered.

If you store your knives loose in a drawer, you're putting the sharp edge of your blades—and your reaching hands—in danger. Blade sheaths are designed to protect against both risks, and we wondered if one style protected better and was easier to use than another.

After some scary moments, we can safely say, yes. We rejected two models because they required "slicing" the knife into their slim, stiff polypropylene folds; what's more, a 1-inch depth barely covered our chef's knives. The magnetized model was also disappointing. It opened easily, like a book, but its cheap, tape-like seam easily peeled or tore away from the cover and shut awkwardly over bulkier knife heels. We preferred a polyproplylene model. Its snap closure and 2 1/2-inch depth accommodated a variety of chef's, slicing, and paring knives. While it was a bit hard to open, it kept sharp blades safely covered.

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