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Knives are the most essential tool in any bushcraft situation. I know we have all been in a situation where see hundreds of knives on a store shelf or an online catalog, and we have no idea what knife we should go for! There are hundreds of bushcraft knives we SHOULD go for, and thousands of knives we should STEER CLEAR of.
Let’s start with the mistake I see most often. PEOPLE LOVE COOL KNIVES! The only problem is that many times these strange, cool-looking knives just do not make the cut (no pun intended).
The most common “cool knife mistake” I see is the Rambo knife.
The Rambo knife is usually a cheap knife with weak steel, that probably will not last more than a week in a real bushcraft scenario. Don’t get me wrong there are some great Rambo knives, but remember that one you saw at your local flea market? Yeah, That one sucked!
Well you get the drift, usually cool huge looking knives do not work! Lets go on to some that do work.
“The Good” knife must meet some requirements.
- They will work hard without breaking.
- They must have a good steel.
- Must have a good “Bang for Buck”
- They Must be a fixed blade.
I have personally used the following knives and have all exceeded at their role of a “Bushcraft Knives”.
Oh, the trusty Mora Knife. Mora knives are made in Switzerland for a price so low it blows our mind. For a price range of $15-$40, these knives have the biggest “Bang for Buck” of any bushcraft knife. In my testing any of the Mora models will perform at the level of a $100 knife. These things are incredible, and there so cheap you don’t care about using and abusing them. They have a very harsh spine, which makes it great for striking fire steels. It’s Scandi blade shape makes it great for woodworking. The only downside to this knife is its steel, which is known for rusting in wet environments.
Next up is SOG Knife. SOGs have a vast array of great bushcraft knives. My personal favorite is the SOG Seal Pup. It is a great blade shape, with a great steel. This knife is a hard worker that still has that “cool” look. This knife usually runs around for about $70. The price is incredibly fair for what you are getting: A beautiful blade, made of good steel. A grippy handle for use in bad weather. And an overall worker knife. It will not fail.
There are so many other “good” knives such as: Habilis bushtools, Buck knives, KA-BAR knives.
These knives do everything you will need them to do. They are crafted with Premium steels and will last a lifetime or two! These knives have so much about them that I won’t even go into detail. Just trust me these knives will not fail.
Fallkniven knives (like the Fallkniven f1) are probably the best bushcraft tool. They are crafted of the best of steels by the best knifemakers. These knives are workers and will last a lifetime. Any of them will make an incredible bushcraft knife. I would bet my life on their blade.
price ranges $130-$300+
The Tom Brown Tracker comes in three models, and is arguably the best camp knife. Its huge belly is ideal chopping. It is a big, heavy workhorse. Even just its looks scream “Macho Man”, and its performance is unmatched.
The only downside is its price ($190+). Its shape almost makes it feel like a hatchet, with the versatility of a knife.
Another great knife is the Spyderco Bushcraft knife, like the Spyderco Paramilitary 2. I’m not going into detail because of its steep price $250+ and because of its resemblance to both Mora knives and Falkniven Knives.