Discover The Opinel Story

Once upon a time in the French Alps...

The Opinel knife is named after the Opinel family from the Savoie region in the heart of the French Alps. In 1890, Joseph Opinel invented a small folding knife that would eventually become a must-have item of French “savoir-vivre”. It’s now considered a design icon throughout the world.

The Opinel Spirit

Opinel is about the simple life, being close to nature, and passing this on from one generation to the next.

The Iconic No. 08

Simple, sturdy, efficient and easy to use, this essential tool remains unchanged since 1890 but is unmatched in its design. Raw material and colors may vary from one collection to another, but its style remains deeply steeped in history and tradition.

This timeless knife is for people who enjoy the outdoors, a must-have tool for professional or amateur handymen. It is used everywhere from the garden to the table, a knife that is given as a gift and passed down to loved ones.

Expertise

Opinel expertise has been passed down from the company's beginnings by creating simple, efficient and durable objects combined with innovative manufacturing processes that guarantee excellent value for your money.

The Opinel knife has 5 different components: the handle, the shell ring, the rivet, the rotating lock ring and the blade.

In the woodshop, we feed wooden squares into our unique shaping machines that produce sanded handles within 10 seconds, ready to be varnished, waxed or stained.

Opinel video

Discover our manufacturing secrets

In the shell ring workshop, we use a press to roll out steel strips and cut them into small rectangular shapes, which are then rolled into cones.

In the blade-manufacturing workshop, after cutting the blade from a strip of steel, we harden it using a thermal treatment suited to the different types of steel. This involves heating to a very high temperature with rapid cooling in an oil bath, then heating again at a lower temperature before cooling at room temperature.

The back of the blade is sanded to remove the burrs from the cut. We then grind and polish the blade (one side at a time) in fully automated machines with a double-wheel system. This gives the blade its unique curved profile that guarantees unrivaled strength and sharpness. Then comes the assembly of components (handle, shell-ring and fixed blade). We pad-print the logo on the handle, then drill and rivet the knife and add the rotating lock ring. Finally, we hand-sharpen the blade. The sharpener passes the blade between two wheels using a unique, precise motion that guarantees the legendary Opinel sharpness.

The Material

Wood 

To prevent a negative impact on the environment (pollution from transport, deforestation ...), 95% of the wood for handles comes from sustainably managed French forests.

Carbon steeliron + carbon

A carbon steel blade is resistant to wear and tear and is easily re-sharpened.

Please note: carbon steel has a low resistance to corrosion. Do not use in damp environments. The blade should be dried and lubricated after use.

Stainless steeliron + carbon + chromium

The stainless steel blade is corrosion-resistant. Our modified 12C27 Sandvik stainless steel has a high carbon content which guarantees the ultimate sharpness.

4.5 million knives manufactured every year by 0 employees.

Opinel Quality

Continuous quality control

We run regular quality checks as raw material and components are received, and at each stage of the manufacturing process.

Strength and resistance

From woodwork to steelwork, as well as new materials like top-of-the-range synthetic polymers, our knives are designed to last a lifetime and will often be passed down from father to son...

Easy to clean

Knives with a stainless steel blade are highly resistant and can be easily cleaned with a sponge, warm water and dishwashing liquid.

Knives with a carbon blade require specific use and cleaning procedures. Because they are extremely sensitive to corrosion, they should not be used in a damp environment, must be dried after each use, regularly lubricated and stored in a dry place.

The Opinel warranty

The warranty for Opinel knives covers normal conditions of use. The knives are replaced in case of manufacturing defects.

Damage from ordinary wear and tear or inappropriate use is not covered by the OPINEL warranty.

Knives made in France

Since its creation in 1890, the company has been manufacturing its knives in the heart of the French Alps. Today our plant in Chambéry (Savoie, France) covers a surface area of almost 60,000 square-feet and employs 110 people, of which 60 work directly in production.

All our products (traditional pocket-knives with carbon steel and stainless steel blades, specialist pocket-knives, sharp slim pocket-knives, garden tools, elegant table knives, etc.) are entirely manufactured in our factory in Chambéry.

Except for the kitchen knives and table knives, the molds and cutting tools have been developed by Opinel and wooden handles are made in Chambéry. These different components are then assembled and sharpened in our plant in Portugal.