OTF Knife Maintenance: No Disassembly Required

OTF Knife Maintenance: No Disassembly Required

These quick and simple steps will keep your OTF knife performing at its highest level - and there isn't any disassembly required.

If you are someone that likes to periodically disassemble knives for maintenance, check out our page on How To Disassemble, Clean, and Lubricate Your OTF Knife. In most instances though, disassembly is not required to properly clean and maintain an Axial out-the-front knife. 

Let's get into it!


  • Cleaner/Lubricant: We recommend using our 3 in 1 Axial Knife Oil to clean, lubricate, and protect the different parts of your knife. But you can also use REM Oil, WD-40, or any other light lubricant. Avoid heavy lubricants because they can gum up the mechanism of your OTF and cause issues with deployment. 
  • Rag for Cleanup: Nothing special about the rag, just use something that is absorbent and won't leave behind fibers.
  • Compressed Air: You can use an air compressor or canned air, either will work just fine.
  • Q-Tip: 1 or 2 Q-Tips for cleaning the trigger area of your knife. 


1. With the blade retracted inside of the handle, tilt your OTF knife upside down and blow compressed air into the opening of the handle to remove any dirt, buildup, and/or debris.

2. Squirt a generous amount of Axial Knife Oil into the opening of your knife. Deploy and retract the blade several times to ensure that all of the internal components are well lubricated.

3. With the blade retracted inside of the handle, tilt your knife upside down again and blow compressed air into the opening to remove any excess oil. It is important to keep your knife well lubricated, but too much lubrication can attract dirt and build-up and hinder the performance of your knife.

4. Use a Q-Tip to clean out any dirt/buildup in the trigger area of the knife.

5. Deploy the blade and wipe down any excess oil on the blade and exterior of the handle.

6. Finally, place a single drop of Axial Knife Oil on each side of the trigger to keep the action of your knife smooth and snappy.


To prevent rust from building up on your blade, keep your knife well lubricated and clean from debris. If you use your knife to slice food, we recommend wiping the blade clean before retracting it back into the handle.

If you use your knife to cut through tape, we recommend removing any tape residue from the blade before retracting it back into the handle to prevent gumming up the mechanism.

You may also like View all