Reviews You Can Rely On

Old Timer 180T Mighty Mite Review

Tiny knife for occasional use or very small hands
Old Timer 180T Mighty Mite
Old Timer 180T Mighty Mite
Credit: Old Timer Knives
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Price:  $13 List
Pros:  Tiny and reliable
Cons:  Too small for most adult hands to perform major tasks
Manufacturer:   Old Timer Knives
By Jediah Porter ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Aug 21, 2017
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
  • Blade and Edge Integrity - 30% 2.0
  • Ergonomics - 20% 1.0
  • Portability - 20% 7.0
  • Construction Quality - 20% 2.0
  • Other Features - 10% 0.0

Our Verdict

The Old Timer Mighty Mite is well named. The design is predominantly a throwback style to knives of the early 1900s. Shrade, the manufacturer, has updated this particular old-fashioned appearing product with a modern locking mechanism. It is also very tiny. Basically, it is as small as a knife can be and still be even a little useful. For those with small hands, or those with light-duty tasks, the Mighty Mite will suffice. For day-to-day use for most adults, there are more convenient options. We recommend this as a kid's (appropriately aged and supervised, of course) first knife or for inclusion in a small emergency or first aid kit.

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Old Timer is almost the smallest knife in our test and by far the simplest. With one, small, locking blade, this is a casual tool for casual users. It can unobtrusively jingle around with the change in your pocket until you need it to open a letter or sharpen a pencil.

Performance Comparison

Old Timer 180T Mighty Mite pocket knife - detail shot of the old timer. name plate, "liner lock" labeled with...
Detail shot of the Old Timer. Name plate, "liner lock" labeled with the word "Press", and the Shrade brand on the blade.
Credit: Jediah Porter

Blade and Edge Integrity

Among knife and steel aficionados the "7Cr17 High Carbon Stainless Steel" Shrade uses in the Old Timer 18OT doesn't have a solid reputation. It is a relatively hard steel. Regular knife users dislike this because it is hard to sharpen. This also means that it holds its edge well, once sharpened. Now, those regular users of knives are repeatedly dulling and then resharpening their blades. Hard steel like 7Cr17 is difficult to sharpen. The thing is, in this tiny, occasional use knife, steel like this isn't the liability one might first assume given the poor reviews for the material alone.

From the factory, in our experience, the blade is plenty sharp. The knife is so small that one cannot exert a large amount of force nor can one use it for extended tasks. This alone -the usage pattern dictated by the form factor- prevents rapid dulling of the blade. The factory edge will last long enough and sharp enough to satisfy anyone that might choose this tiny tool. The occasional sharpening one will need to do will be tedious, but manageable. Another drawback of this hard steel is its brittleness. For chopping and prying, the blade material of the 18OT is ill-suited. Again, however, the form-factor serves to protect the product. One simply isn't going to tackle heavy tasks with this knife.

Among the other small knives, the blade of the Old Timer is the least useful and least sharp, overall.


If you have small child-sized hands, you can use this knife for extensive whittling and cutting. Otherwise, it will be relegated to super-light duty tasks.

Old Timer 180T Mighty Mite pocket knife - the mighty mite in an average adult male hand, for size reference...
The Mighty Mite in an average adult male hand, for size reference. This is a small knife, suitable for easy pocket carry for light duty tasks.
Credit: Jediah Porter


Portability is a function of size and carry options. A smaller knife is more portable, as is a knife with a pocket clip and/or a keychain attachment. By size alone, only the Top Pick Victorinox Classic is more mobile. However, the Classic edges ahead with a simple keychain clip. The Old Timer Mighty Mite is so small that it can easily get lost in one's pockets with receipts and coins. For rapid use, a pocket clip or even keychain attachment is faster to find and grab ahold of.

Old Timer 180T Mighty Mite pocket knife - the small knives we tested for 2016, with their respective blades...
The small knives we tested for 2016, with their respective blades open for comparison. From left to right, the Old Timer, Top Pick Victorinox Classic, and Gerber Fine Edge STL.
Credit: Jediah Porter

Construction Quality

Often, smaller pieces of equipment are more prone to manufacturing issues and sloppy tolerances. So far, in our months of testing of the Old Timer, we've had no issues with hinges, locks, or side-plates. The "Mighty Mite" is indeed mighty. The steel, Delrin, and brass construction are proven, classic, and dependable. We fear that the brass "liner lock" will fatigue or bind, but that has yet to happen.

Old Timer 180T Mighty Mite pocket knife - brass liner lock on the old timer, engaged. to close the blade the...
Brass liner lock on the Old Timer, engaged. To close the blade the user must press the diagonaling brass tab to the left in this photo.
Credit: Jediah Porter

The Victorinox Classic seems flimsy like the Mighty Mite. For the record, we experienced no issues with the construction of neither the Mighty Mite nor the Classic.

Other Features

There are no other features on the Old Timer.


This contender is near the very rock bottom cost of what we tested. Performance is limited, as we expand on above, but the initial cost is very low.


In short, we like the miniature stature and classic lines of the Mighty Mite. There are more usable knives in our test, and there are surely more sophisticated products, but we included the Old Timer for a good reason. It is tiny, reliable, and serves as a throwback to your grandfather's pocket collection. The liner lock brings a modern up date to the knife. Overall the Old Timer MIghty Mite is just too small to be a contender with the literal big dogs.

Old Timer 180T Mighty Mite pocket knife - as a handy companion, the old timer is a suitable letter opener, as...
As a handy companion, the Old Timer is a suitable letter opener, as well as being appropriate for light duty cutting tasks like pencil sharpening and cutting string.
Credit: Jediah Porter

Jediah Porter
You Might Also Like

Ad-free. Influence-free. Powered by Testing.

GearLab is founded on the principle of honest, objective, reviews. Our experts test thousands of products each year using thoughtful test plans that bring out key performance differences between competing products. And, to assure complete independence, we buy all the products we test ourselves. No cherry-picked units sent by manufacturers. No sponsored content. No ads. Just real, honest, side-by-side testing and comparison.

Learn More