Best Hunting Knives 2018
Choosing the best hunting knife will largely depend on your hunting needs. For larger animals, you will need bigger knives while for smaller animals you will need smaller knives. The great news is that you can find plenty of good models to choose from for every situation. While you can find some standard knives you can also make your own knife with a custom approach which is offered by some manufacturers. So where do you start?
Size is important
One of the most important characteristics of a knife comes with the size of the blade and the size of the handle. You will usually find dedicated knives which range in size and construction and the good news is that you will be able to find a knife you are comfortable with.
The size of the blade will be a great indicator on what the knife can be actually used for. You will thus be able to find the best size for your needs. But the scope of the knife should not be the only determining factor as you may want to balance this with the size of your hands. For example, if you have small hands you will find it difficult to maneuver some larger knives which are made for large animals. But you may still find a good compromise by looking for a knife which comes with a larger blade and a small handle. This will ensure that while you have a solid grip you`ll also be able to tackle larger animals with ease.
Then there is the issue of not torturing the animals without any purpose. A larger knife will get the job done faster with less pain as you`ll be able to control the situation and execute it faster. This will thus bring into discussion the importance of the practicality of the size before your preferences. You should always take a balanced approach when choosing a knife and think about all of these variables needs to come into place when you are planning to purchase a new hunting knife. So what type of knives can you find?
- Gutting knives
- Deboning knives
- Skinning knives
- Butchering knives
- Camp knives
These are just of few types of knives you can find and they all come in various sizes which are designed for a particular use. Although you can still use the knives for other functions, you will find they work best for the main purpose. Other designs such as the all-purpose knife may be a better alternative if you want to carry a single option which can be used in a number of situations.
The purpose of the knife is just as important of the size. They are many models to choose from and this is the perfect time to analyze what your needs are and how you plan to use the knife. Since you might be looking for quality designs, you might be spending more on a knife than with an entry-level model. This is why it is best to find a knife which works to deliver a durable experience with good performance and which is made for the purpose you need it for.
For example, you will find that deboning knives are perfect for maneuverability and technical use. The blade may also be balanced for improved power, but usually, these types of knives have to be balanced. But since the skills of every user are different, you will want to look for a design which is easy for you to use for the purpose you need. Again, practicality plays an important role even with the purpose of the knives.
The design of the knives will be closely linked to the purpose characteristic. This is when you will find that different designs are best in some solutions. And if you truly want top performance you will avoid all-purpose knives and you will have to focus on finding a design which will make the whole experience easier and even more precise.
There are many designs to choose from. From the classic striations on the back of the blade to the two-bladed options, you can choose from a large range of thousands of options. Knives which require the use of force will usually come with a guard. The guard plays an important role as it has the ability of keeping your hand from sliding towards the blade. This is why it is important to consider your safety first and choosing a knife with a guard may be the only option for hunting purposes.
The design can also lead to the decision of choosing between folding knives and fixed blades. These designs are made for purpose and this is why you will find that using both of them can have certain benefits. For example, folding knives can be easily and safely carried in a pocket. You always have them at hand when needed and they are usually made for a large range of purposes.
Folding knives will also prove to be a good option if you are planning to spend more time outdoors which will require more equipment. This is why you will be tempted to reduce the weight and size of this equipment and choosing a folding knife might be a better option.
A fix blade on the other hand, can offer all the power you need and the precision you are looking for from a top design. You will find that a fixed blade may be also easier to maintain and clean as it has no moving parts and fewer areas for dirt to build up in. And this is another important element which needs to be considered with the design of the knives. You will find that a simpler design is also easier to clean and to maintain free of bacteria.
A fixed blade knife may also be a better option in some specific situations. For example, if you are looking to use the best option for gutting, you will want a fixed blade which is fast and precise. You will also get the best control from these designs which are made to do their job as quickly and as effectively as possible.
Another good example comes with the skinning knives. You will find these models usually come with a smaller construction which is perfect for short strokes and it may even be the case they include a curved blade. This will make them easier to maneuver but also highly effective in their purpose. These knives are a great alternative when you try to have a precise approach and skinning is of those situations which will require you to use precision and highly effective blades for the best results. This is why these knives also come with smaller handles which come with total maneuverability.
The handle is a very important element of the knife which can get overlooked by new hunters. It is the main point and sometimes the only point of contact with the knife. This means you will always have to look for the best handle which is made with safety and maneuverability in mind. You will find that besides the design of the handle, the materials will also be important to deliver the best usability and go beyond what you may first expect. For example, as you hand get bloody you will find that not all handles can deliver the anti-slippage deign you want. This is why some synthetic materials might be a better option to natural materials in this situation. Although you can also find natural handles which are made to improve grip and anti-slippage, it may be down to each manufacturer on how to approach this issue to create the best user experience.
Another interesting approach comes with multifunctional hunting knives. Although these knives are harder to find as they offer less precision and less control, you may still find them useful in some situations. Although they do not have the increased functionality of the regular hunting knives, they may still include at least of couple of characteristics which makes them multifunctional.
For example, you may find a knife which comes with a small blade design which is curved. Usually this can be used for skinning purposes. But these knives can also come with a gut hook which is perfect for gutting and opening the belly of the animal. These knives may be harder to find but they might represent a cost-effective solution for your hunting needs. They will also tend to work to a less precise level as they will not be designed for a single purpose. This is why multipurpose solutions might be good for a wide range of needs but they might not be perfectible for a certain situation.
Custom knives represent a great solution if you plan to take your personal needs to the next level. The good news is that you will not have to look for a specialist in your area necessarily. You may also find that some manufacturers offer custom solutions which are easier to order and delivered to a precise date. But are custom knives truly better? This will largely depend on your needs. In most situations, custom knives can be made to improve performance. But in some situations, custom knives are made to bring your preferred materials into a product which can be used for years. So what types of materials can be chose for the blade of custom knife?
- Alloy – Chromium, Nickel, Vanadium etc.
- Combinations of steel and alloy
These materials can usually be found in standard knives as well. This is where you will find that some materials are better for you than others. While steel remains the classic and pure approach to hunting knives, you may also find that some alloy combinations which might include Chromium, Nickel or Vanadium can also show improved results. This will be largely down to your needs and the capabilities of the manufacturer.
The more materials have to go into a knife, the more expensive the product will be. But it is also true that a fully custom knife can prove to be a better option for your own needs. In some cases, it may even be a good idea to start with a standard commercial knife to see what you like and what your dislike about its use. This can represent the stepping stone towards the ultimate performance with the custom design which can prove to be a better option for your skills and needs.
Choosing a hunting knife may not be the easiest choice you will make, especially with all the available options on the market. You will soon find out that the knives you find are best in terms of performance when they are purchased for a specific need. All-purpose knives can still be a good option, especially at the beginning when you don`t know exactly what to look for and which features are the most important to you. This is why it is important to find the best knife to get started and not look for the best overall knife.
When you will get to a skill level you feel comfortable with any knife, you can start looking into choosing designs which will take your precision to the next level. It may be that you need a better blade or a better handle. It may also be the case that you need a better design which is made for a purpose. But the truth is the more you advance in your skills the more knives you will need to perform the various hunting needs. This is why it is important for you to consider an annual budget for the knives as you will certainly find some new appealing designs which might prove to deliver a better performance. And in the end, it may not even be about the better performance but about the new knife which can reignite the passion for hunting and make your passion grow in time.