This Fastball has a stonewashed CPM-20CV cleaver blade with an urban blue anodized aluminum handle.
The Gerber Fastball offers American made durability and a precision EDC design. This flipper knife sports a slim cleaver blade and a flat sage aircraft grade aluminum handle. Item includes a 3-way reversible stainless steel pocket clip for versatile everyday carry.
This knife did not start off well, it definitely needed to be taken apart and cleaned... There was so much red loctite it even made it's way to the bearings but once I torched it off, cleaned the bearings and lubed the pivet. The action was how it was supposed to be, smooth and easy to deploy. The cleaver 20cv has helped with a lot of zip ties, wire stripping and cardboard. Knife is still sharp from the factory edge. 9/10 pretty happy with this knife. If you'd like a size comparison it's pretty close to the Benchmade bugout but mm smaller.
Gerber has been trying to appeal to the enthusiasts lately by introducing knives with better steel and better and fit and finish. It's been a very long time since I've bought a Gerber, so I went on a cleaver spree and picked up the Fastball, Asada, and FlatIron. The last two were really disappointing, but the Fastball is the best of the bunch. Here's some takeaways: Pros: -Pretty good action -20CV blade is thin and slicey -decent ergos -well done sharpening choil Cons: -poor blade grind -minor fit and finish issues -late liner lock engagement -slight detent rock -poor access to the liner lock for disengagement -Blade requires a bit of coaxing over the detent ball to close -shallow screws This is a decent effort by Gerber, but unless you're in love with the design I'd probably skip this one.
Good: Opening action (depending on detent). Ergonomics are overall okay. Great: Blade has excellent geometry, and the 20 CV performs as it should during testing. Bad: Weak-ish detent. Liner lock is a major hot-spot during extended/heavier use. It would greatly benefit from a detent ball ramp, because the flipper tab stops on your thumb when closing. The blade/scales could benefit from jimping. Ugly: Side to side as well as up and down blade play.
I like cleaver style knives and for the price, a 20cv blade liner lock seemed like a good deal. But when I got the knife, it had the worst action of any knife I've ever owned- a $30 knife from (giant online retailer named after a major river) had vastly superior performance. After disassembling the knife I saw the problem- gobs of what looked like red thread locker over the bearings and liner lock surface. I had to use a torch to melt that garbage off everything. After that, a good cleaning, and some nano oil, the action became what I would expect from a knife at this price point. The blade is nice and slicey, the ergos are decent, but as someone else mentioned, the detent makes closing the blade more of a chore than it should be. I have a Gerber multitool and love it, but with the fastball, they've hit a foul ball instead of a homerun.