Skip to content

Zero Tolerance 0022 Pocket Knife Review

If you are a person who has never found the right-sized knife, then the Zero tolerance 0022 might be the one for you. Just to be clear, this is a small knife ideal for people who find a regular-sized pocket or tactical knife too big.

The Zero Tolerance 0022 knife is the smallest knife ZT has ever made. But don’t let its size fool you; it is an impressive piece of engineering that has won over the hearts of knife enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers.

But you do not have to take our word for it. We instead insist that you go through the information below to make your decision. The review outlines some of the key highlights of this small but actionable knife.

We will also cover some of the shortcomings of the knife. And finally, we will let you know if this is the ideal EDC knife for you. But first, take a look at the description and key features of the ZT 0022 knife.

Shop Zero Tolerance 0022 Pocket Knife


The Zero Tolerance 0022 is the smallest ZT knife designed by Tim Galyean and brought forth by the talented engineers of ZT. It is a compact knife that fits in hand well. This model has a carbon fiber handle with a blue and titanium stonewashed pivot collar.

The knife also has a 1.8-inch clip-point blade made of CPM 20CV steel. It promises superior hardness, corrosion resistance, and toughness. The steel is also ideal for excellent edge retention, but we will get to that in a while.

The knife comes with a reversible pocket clip for left or right tip-up carry. Additionally, it has a titanium frame lock, and it is reinforced with a steel lock bar insert for solid blade lock up. Moreover, the ball-bearing opening makes the knife easy and quick to open and close.

The visuals highly improve with the decorative pivot added by ZT. It has a blue anodized pivot ring plus matching tube spacers. This makes an attractive contrast next to the dark carbon fiber handle.

The size of the knife is the key attraction of the ZT 0022. It has made it quite popular as an EDC, tactical, and adventurer knife. An in-depth look into the key features will show the strengths of the knife. So don’t make any judgments yet, and keep reading.

Key Features

CPM 20CV Blade 

The physical properties of the CPM 20CV blade are one of the best for multiple uses. It is why this blade is commonly found in high-performance cutlery, industrial and heavy-duty machinery, plus tools, pocket knives, and even machinery parts.

The steel has a crystalline structure that produces exceptional hardness and other properties. It is all thanks to the steel’s distinct chemical composition and structure. Some of the key elements in the CPM 20CV blade include:

  • 20% Chromium. Chromium is an element that helps with corrosion resistance. This is why all stainless steel needs to have at least 12% of chromium to prevent the formation of rust through oxidation. Since you will be working with 20% chromium, you do not need to worry about rust. Therefore, using this blade in wet conditions should be enjoyable.
  • 4% Vanadium. Vanadium is the element that boots the hardenability of the entire blade. In steel, it offers roughness that prevents fracturing. Therefore, you can comfortably use the blade while applying pressure with no chances of cracking, chipping, or breaking. Many steel blades only have about 0.35% vanadium, but this one provides a lot more, making it suitable for shock-loading situations.
  • 9% Carbon. Many steel blades do not have too much carbon. Most have about 0.6% of the element. Carbon offers excellent hardness to the blade. However, carbon also brings a lot of brittleness when in high amounts. Therefore, the blade becomes more prone to chipping and cracking. But this steel is reasonably resistant despite the high amounts of carbon. The vanadium counters the effects of high carbon content.
  • 1% Molybdenum. This is a unique element that helps with corrosion resistance to some extent. It is crucial since corrosion resistance is a contact threat with pocket and tactical knives. Molybdenum also enhances the hardenability of the blade and its general strength in various environmental conditions. This makes the blade all-weather, ideal for summer to winter.
  • 6% Tungsten. And finally, the small amount of tungsten promotes the blade’s strength in high temperatures. This can help with survival when camping or during emergencies.

Shop Zero Tolerance 0022 Pocket Knife


The chemical composition is impressive, but what does it mean for the blade? Here are some of the properties of the blade and how well it performs:

  • Hardness and Deformation resistance. This is the measure of how well steel resists forces that want to deform it. The HRC (Hugh Rockwell C-scale) is used to measure the hardness value of steel blades for knives. The CPM 20CV blade measures 59 to 61 HRC. Many good knife steels have a number between the high 50s and low 60s because this is a sweet spot that makes it hard but not brittle. Therefore, the CPM 20CV blade is hard, but you may experience some problems with fragility. You may also have trouble with sharpening, but we will get that.
  • Edge-retention. Maintaining a sharp cutting edge is one of the important parts of a pocket knife. It reduces downtime and improves efficiency. The CPM 20CV blade performs better compared to other blades in edge retention. It is ideal for retaining an edge well, and you won’t need to sharpen too much. However, as we have covered, sharpening may be a problem due to hardness. Therefore, while it retains a sharp edge, you will struggle to make it sharp again once it becomes blunt.
  • Corrosion resistance. Corrosion resistance is how well the steel avoids developing an oxidative coat when exposed to moisture, salt, and oxygen in the environment. Corrosion is a serious problem with many metals, and manufacturers had to find a way to ensure it does not affect steel. That is why steel is a preferred blade for pocket knives, cutlery, and heavy-duty machinery. The CPM 20CV blade scores well with corrosion resistance thanks to the high chromium content. Therefore, users can enjoy reduced maintenance requirements for the knife.
  • Wear resistance and durability. Wear resistance is the ability of the steel to resist losing part of its volume when it comes in contact with other items. Wearing comes from the environment’s elements, but a rough surface often rubs away the blade, resulting in abrasion. The CPM 20CV offers excellent wear resistance, which also amplifies the overall lifetime of the knife. It remains in excellent working condition for years, making it a lifetime companion with proper maintenance.
  • And finally, the CPM 20CV steel is quite tough. Toughness means how well the steel withstands impact and stress without breaking, chipping, and cracking. Breaking or cracking during use is a serious issue because it endangers users. While toughness is more challenging to quantify, the CPM 20CV blade performs well. Therefore, this is the right knife if you are more prone to dropping or impact.

Now to some other vital features.

Shop Zero Tolerance 0022 Pocket Knife


Blade Length

The blade measures 4.6 cm or 1.8 inches. As mentioned, this is the smallest blade that ZT has made. A typical blade measures between 2 and 6 inches (5 to 15 cm). However, pocket knife blades have been made smaller.

But the ZT line records the 0022 as the smallest pocket knife. But does it function as well as other pocket knives? We think so because while small, it performs well in versatility and convenience.

For starters, a smaller blade is more widely accepted in different communities. It is always good to learn about carrying laws within your county, but often, smaller blades are legal, so you will remain compliant with all regulations.

Additionally, a smaller knife is not as burdensome as carrying a larger blade. This also makes it easier to conceal when you need to. This knife is therefore ideal for everyday carry, whether inside or outside.

The only downside to a small blade like this one is getting used to it. But most users state that it only takes a few tries to get used to the small size. But if you need something more solid and heavy in your hand, then this is not for you.

Clip-Point Blade Style

This is a familiar blade shape popular with outdoors people because of its versatility. A spine with a front section that appears to be clipped off characterizes the blade. The cut-out area can be straight or concave, forming a fine point for precision tasks.

Since the thickness of the blade decreases heading to the tip, it is ideal for piercing and puncturing.

Therefore, this knife is best for hard-stabbing motions such as opening boxes. It is also suitable for slicing and cutting. But sadly, it does not perform well with drawn-out cuts such as skinning and carving.

It is also important to point out that the clip point blade can be weaker than other blades due to the thinning at the tip of the clip point. If the blade does not puncture the material on the first try, you risk breaking your knife.

But as long as the blade can hold its own against the materials, then the knife should be fine. Sadly, this may be a problem in the middle of an adventure. Still, it is a valuable asset to have if you are a regular adventurer.

Overall, the versatility of the clip-point blade puts it at the top of the list compared to other types of blades.

Shop Zero Tolerance 0022 Pocket Knife


Carbon Fiber Handle

The carbon fiber handle is several strands of carbon weaved together and set in a resin. Carbon fiber handles are more popular in pocket knives because the material promises many dependable advantages.

For starters, carbon fiber is very lightweight. Carbon is light, and weaving it together makes an easy-to-handle knife. It is lighter than steel, leather, and other materials for knife handles. This significantly reduces its weight, making it ideal for EDC.

As for strength, carbon fiber has two sides. First, because it is a weaved material, it is stronger than stainless steel and other materials. Weaving combines multiple strands, enhancing their strength and resistance to impact.

However, it also tends to be brittle. Again, this is due to the weaved nature of the material. One scratch on the weave pattern and everything could come falling apart. It breaks apart when stretched in different directions.

Because it is non-metallic, carbon fiber is also resistant to rust and other types of corrosion. This also gives the user a good grip even in wet conditions. Carbon fiber is on the pricier side so expect to spend more on this knife.

But we think the purchase is worth it considering the excellent visuals of the handle. Carbon fiber looks unique, and the weave reflects light beautifully. Thanks to its eye-catching appearance, it is one of the knives you will not lose.

It is important to note that the carbon fiber production process often determines the overall results. It is a labor-intensive process, which is why it can be pricey. Therefore, if you are looking for high-quality carbon fiber knives, ensure that you go to a reliable manufacturer.

Luckily, you can be sure that ZT does not cut corners in manufacture; you will only get the best products, including the 0022 model.

Final Thought

Ready to try a smaller knife? Well, we think it is worth the purchase. An EDC knife should be small, easy to handle, and lightweight. The Zero Tolerance 0022 meets all these demands while providing you with an actionable substitute for outdoor adventure.

If you prefer to have something more solid and heavy in your hand, do not rule out the 0022 model just yet. This knife could save you when a large or heavy blade does not meet your needs.

Therefore, we believe this is an ideal knife for anyone looking to add to their collection. It is also ideal for beginners. Just be patient while using it for the first few days because size gets a little getting used to. Otherwise, your experience should be great!

Shop Zero Tolerance 0022 Pocket Knife


Previous article Spyderco Endela Wharncliffe C243FWCBK Pocket Knife Review
Next article SOG Aegis AT Pocket Knife Review

Leave a comment

Comments must be approved before appearing

* Required fields