The Fascinating World of Out The Front Switchblades

Out The Front (OTF) switchblades, often referred to simply as OTFs, are a unique type of automatic knife that stands out due to the distinctive way their blades deploy. Unlike side-opening switchblades, OTF blades extend and retract straight out of the top of the knife. This sleek and functional design has captured the imagination of knife enthusiasts and collectors around the world.

Today we are breaking down everything you need to know about OTF switchblades and giving you a few great options to start your OTF collection!

Types of OTF Switchblades

OTF switchblades are categorized into two primary styles: double action and single action.

Double Action OTFs: Double Action OTF knives feature a button mechanism that both deploys and retracts the blade automatically.

When the button is pressed, the blade swiftly shoots out of the front of the handle, and activating the button again causes the blade to retract. This dual functionality makes double-action OTFs allows for rapid deployment and retraction with minimal effort.

Single Action OTFs: In contrast, single action OTFs use the button only to deploy the blade.

A charging handle must be pulled back to retract and reset the knife. This added step may appeal to users who appreciate the tactile experience of manually resetting their knife. They can also sometimes be more affordable than their double-action brethren, but this isn’t true across the board.

Popular OTF Knives To Buy

The appeal of OTF switchblades lies not only in their unique deployment mechanism but also in their practical applications. Several OTF knife companies have gained widespread popularity and acclaim within the knife-collecting community.

Here are just a few of the well-known OTF switchblade brands to consider buying from:

  • Pirahna: Renowned for their sleek design and high-quality craftsmanship, Pirahna OTF knives are a favorite among collectors looking for a top-tier switchblade. Made entirely in the USA, the Piranha Excalibur OTF is considered one of the best OTF’s available.
  • Delta Force: Delta Force knives are known for their robust construction, practical designs, and affordability. This makes them a popular choice among daily carry enthusiasts (as always check your local laws before carrying a switchblade in public!). The Delta Force 9.5-inch double-action is an amazing starter OTF!
  • AKC: AKC is an Italian brand that offers affordable and elegant OTF options. The AKC is one of the best entry-level OTF knives, offering dagger-style blades with a double-action deployment mechanism. One of the most sought-after AKC models is the AKC F-16.

These brands and models, among many others, showcase the diversity and innovation in the OTF switchblade market, catering to a wide range of preferences and needs.

Check out our entire selection of OTF Switchblades!


OTF switchblades represent a fascinating blend of engineering and artistry. Whether you prefer the seamless operation of a double-action OTF or the engaging mechanism of a single-action model, the world of OTF knives has something to offer for every collector. OTF switchblades remain a testament to the innovative spirit and enduring appeal of automatic knives.


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