Upping The game

When the upscale tactical and EDC market started picking up steam, Zero Tolerance saw an opportunity to expand their brand to include more stylish knives and today has a much different face than those early years. “I would say Zero Tolerance is a premium and professional-focused brand. Zero Tolerance has grown and expanded over the years,” notes MacNair, “and I would argue our perceptions about what a knife needs to be have changed as well. There will always be a place for larger, overbuilt knives designed for the professional market, but we find more and more that lightweight, reasonable cost, and ease of carry/use matter more to the majority of our customers. Our customers vote with their dollars, and we try to dream up new products to make them happy.”

Zero Tolerance — often referred to as simply “ZT” — had worked with custom knifemakers on several designs from early on. With their new push for more upscale folders they kicked their collaborations into high gear and over the past 10 years have brought in a who’s who of notables. “The list is fairly extensive. Notably, we collaborate with Rick Hinderer, RJ Martin, Dmitry Sinkevich, Les George, Todd Rexford, Jens Anso, Matt Diskin and Ernest Emerson. We also focus on our own original designs under the ZT Originals designation,” Jim informs.