The best knife that I ever carried was a custom made one. Right now my favorite manufactured knife is a medium sized Iisakki Scout Hunting Knife with a 4 5/8 inch blade. I Recently bought a very nice used that that famous on line auction for $15. -- Tex
I recently picked this up for a EDC. It's been in my pocket since I picked it up. The opening mechanism was pretty stiff for a week but through use its loosed up. By the sound of it you are looking for something a bit larger and if you want to cut wood with, this would be a bit out of your price range but one I've been eyeballing for the same purposes.
My favorite is an old re-worked ( by Muskrat Man Knives-Some of the old time guys might know him as Catapult Kid ) Buck 110. It has a shortened clip point blade,with Osage Orange scales and brass pins. Knife was a wreck when he found it. I have to get a pic up of it. Guy does awesome blade work! Flatband
I really like the Benchmade Griptillians, pretty inexpensive, AXIS lock which is a breeze to close, and buttery smooth opening. As far as more expensive folders (non-balisong) I REALLY loved my Benchmade Skirmish. That thing was I believe 11 or so inches long open so it was a beast. My current EDC is a Spyderco Tenacious G10....you can pick one up for less than 30 bucks and the thing is a quality knife. Super sharp, but uses the chinese steel "8Cr13MoV"
My collection is modest, but the cheap Mora is perfect for me for anything that has to do with wood carving...
Are there any folders that have a scandi grind, or are just nice with carving?
I looked around the net the other night, and it didnt look too promising.