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Oregon Knife Laws (Updated 2020): What knives are legal to carry in the ‘Beaver State?’

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Oregon’s nature scene is so dreamy that you may never want to go back home after indulging in it. The Columbia River Gorge looks like something out of a sci-fi movie and not an actual place but it happens to be one of the best places to go Windsurfing in the state and putting your tricks to the ultimate test.

Whatever your fancy, you are guaranteed an eon of memories and experiences. Siuslaw National Forest lies right on the coast of the Pacific and is an absolute sweet spot for  Big Game Hunting across its magnificent 600,000 acres of woodland. Elk, black bears, and bighorn sheep are just a few of the many animals looming around this National Forest. With predators and prey around, it is important to be equipped with the right type of gear as the wilderness is a dangerous hunting ground. The right tools may be the difference between life or death as you cannot rely on outside help to reach you quickly enough in the deep woodlands. Tactical knives provide a quick and practical way to be equipped at a moment’s notice. It is imperative, however, that we choose the right type of knife, blade length, and purpose for our trip.

“Oregon knife laws tend to be among the most lenient in the U.S. with regards to owning and carrying knives.”

Whatever your gear needs are choosing the ideal knife rests at the top of the list. 

Fixed Blade Knives

  • Have no moving parts and don’t break
  • Strong, lengthy blades offer more versatility
  • Rapid deployment
  • Hunting, fishing and tactical use

Folding Blade Knives:

  • Blades uses a locking mechanism when fully extended
  • Convenient and more practical for EDC (Everyday carry)
  • Single-handed operation (open and close)
  • Used for camping, MPT (Multipurpose tool), box cutting.

Automatic Blade Knives:

  • Operated by either a slide switch or button release mechanism
  • Blade ejects out of the handle.
  • Tough to sharpen and clean.
  • Great for chores around the house or garden.

‘As you search for your perfect knife please keep in mind the laws and legislation with regards to owning and carrying knives’
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FIXED BLADE KNIVES

Fixed blade knives have no moving parts and are often more sturdy and resilient as the blades are forged into the handle. The blade length is usually longer as these knives are designed to be durable and withstand the toughest of tasks whilst being easy to maintain and unbreakable.

They are a go-to-favorite with serial hunters, anglers, and tactical users due to their rugged nature and hard-cut full tang blades. 

The ‘Korudo’ is a popular example. The knife features a 5.4” full-tang steel blade with a straight edge finish. The handle sits firmly in the palm whilst handling any level of the task.

Fixed blade knives are generally legal to own and carry in public with the following restrictions:
It is LEGAL TO OWN and CARRY these knives. 
  • Open Carry is perfectly legal (there is no blade minimum or maximum length).

ILLEGAL 

  • It is ILLEGAL to conceal carry any dirk, dagger, or any other stabbing knife.

HOW IS CONCEALED CARRY DEFINED IN OREGON?

The Supreme Court of Oregon declared that a weapon was concealed if it was not readily identifiable as a weapon or if the person carrying it attempted to obscure the fact that he or she was carrying a weapon.  

A weapon is also deemed concealed if there is any evidence of an imperfect to disguise it or prevent it from being found. 

FOLDING BLADE KNIVES:

Folding blade knives are convenient and practical for EDC (Everyday carry). The blade latches into place when fully extended by a locking mechanism. They can easily be operated single-handedly and are great for quick and easy tasks.

This knife is an important tool for the everyday tasks of emergency service personnel where time is of the essence!

Folding blade knives are completely legal to own and possess!

It is LEGAL TO OWN and CARRY these knives. 

  • Open Carry is perfectly legal given that the blade is not longer than 4.75 inches in length.
  • Conceal carry is perfectly legal given that the knife is regarded as an “ordinary pocketknife!”

ILLEGAL 

  • Conceal carry is ILLEGAL of any folding knife that has a blade which projects or swings into position by force of a spring or centrifugal force!

Any manual-folding blade knife under 4.75 inches can be open-carried anywhere without concern!
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AUTOMATIC KNIVES (SWITCHBLADES)

Automatic knives deploy instantly and are very effective as they require very little to be operated. The blade ejects either OTF (Out the front) or swings into place similar to a folding knife except in this situation the blade is assisted. These knives are operated by either a button release mechanism or slide switch.

It is LEGAL TO OWN and CARRY these knives. 

  • Open Carry is perfectly legal (with a maximum length limit).

ILLEGAL 

  • Conceal carry is strictly ILLEGAL of any automatic knife! 

AUTOMATIC KNIVES are LEGAL TO OWN IN OREGON!

Though Oregon’s knife laws are lenient compared to other states it is necessary to understand them and ensure no crime is being committed. 

Here are a few more facts about the possession and carry of knives:

  • It is legal to own ANY fixed blade knife!
  • It is legal to own ANY switchblade or automatic knife!
  • It is legal to own ANY ballistic or gravity knife!
  • All of the above are allowed for open carry however they are ALL STRICTLY ILLEGAL FOR CONCEALED CARRY!

Beaver State’s knife laws are simple and easy to go by as only manual folding knives a.k.a. Pocketknives are allowed for concealed carry up to 4.75”!

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