The word bushcraft literally means the ability to travel and survive in nature with a minimum of equipment and without anyone’s help. Thus, the best bushcraft knife is a universal tool, both in nature and in stone jungles. Since a bushcraft knife has a special purpose, it is very difficult to find a replacement for it among other knives we use in our everyday life. So, what are the main features of a bushcraft knife? First of all, it must be very durable, thin, and sharp. The blade should be easy to sharpen. Choose a high-quality knife in this series that will allow you to survive, even if you are left alone with wildlife. It needs to cut cutlery from wood quickly and efficiently, clean the fish, and even protect you from the attacks of wild animals. Therefore, if you are a fan of trekking and cannot live without extreme sports, you need to purchase a bushcraft knife. Today, you will learn how to pick the best one from what’s available on the market.
If you are a bushcrafter, you need to own a bushcraft knife in 2023. It will help you to perform various wilderness tasks for hunting, fishing, cutting trees, etc. When choosing such a knife, you need to be sure that it won’t get damaged and won’t leave you without the chance to survive in wild jungles. So, we’ve done the research for you and come up with the top 11 best knives available on sale today.
Top 5 Best Bushcraft Knives: Comparison Table
|Product||Blade Length||Weight||Blade Thickness||Blade Material||Handle Material||Sheath Material|
|Morakniv Bushcraft Carbon Steel Survival Knife||4.3 inches||0.34 pounds||0.125 inches||HRC 56-58 Carbon Steel||TPE-rubber||Plastic|
|TOPS Knives Brothers of Bushcraft Drop Point Fixed Blade Knife||4.75 inches||0.44 pounds||0.19 inches||1095 Carbon Steel||Micarta||Kydex|
|CDS-Survival Bushcraft Survival Hunting Knife||3.94 inches||0.5 pounds||0.16 inches||Stainless Steel Molybdenum-Vanadium 58 (MOVA-58) / HRC 56-59||Micarta||Genuine leather|
|Spyderco Moran Upswept Fixed Blade Knife||3.92 inches||0.19 pounds||0.123 inches||VG-10 Stainless Steel||FRN (fiberglass-reinforced nylon)/Kraton||Boltaron|
|Benchmade Bushcrafter 162 Fixed Outdoor Survival Knife||4.4 inches||0.48 pounds||0.164 inches||PM-S30V (58-60 HRC) Carbon Steel||G10||Leather|
Best Overall: Morakniv Bushcraft Carbon Steel Survival Knife
This brand is popular for manufacturing the best bushcraft knife in the world with a fine cutting edge. It has introduced blades with premium resilience and sharpness. The 3.3mm heavy-duty carbon steel body is the best feature of this bushcraft knife. With it, you can perform tasks like cutting thick lumbers, chopping meat, shaving hair, and so on.
- Carbon steel blade
- 2.5mm blade thickness
- Rubber grip handle
- Backside made for fire starting
- Handle sheath is not very comfortable but long-lasting
Easiest to Sharpen: TOPS Knives Brothers of Bushcraft Drop Point Fixed Blade Knife
The Brothers of Bushcraft is one of the finest companies known for manufacturing blades. This particular cutter has a 1095 heavy-duty carbon steel blade, which makes it a highly demanded product in the market. It also has a Micarta handle that has cut-outs on the side. The cut-outs help in a firmer grip and a fire bow. You can attach it to your belt with the help of the sturdy belt clip. Also, it is built of a Kydex sheath, which makes the cutter more capable of all tasks.
- Carbon steel blade
- Strong Micarta handle
- Kydex sheath for extra strength
- Steel belt clip increases portability
- Thick and heavy blade, however, it is highly durable
Best Survival Knife for the Money: CDS-Survival Bushcraft Survival Hunting Knife
This is the best camping knife on this list compared to the other cutters. It will help you perform multiple tasks like hunting, camping, woodworking, fishing, and a lot more. The blade is made of molybdenum-vanadium stainless steel; therefore, the overall build of the cutter is elegant and durable. The blade length is 100mm, and the thickness is 5mm. The high-quality Micarta handle is also preferred by most buyers. The handle is neither slippery nor difficult to hold, so this is surely a great bushcraft survival knife.
- Stainless steel body for high durability
- Heavy Micarta handle
- Leather sheath for multiuse
- Firesteel that helps in building a fire easily
- It is a bit pricey but offers premium quality
Best to Handle: Spyderco Moran Upswept Fixed Blade Knife
If you have always wanted to purchase a high performing knife, then this is the best bushcraft knife you can ever buy. When using this cutter, you will feel blessed due to its lightweight and versatility. The blades are made of flat-ground VG-10. The blade shape is tapered in the starting and then thins down along the spine. The FRN (fiber-reinforced nylon) handle effectively fills the grip to avoid slipping. The product weighs 2.89 ounces, and the dimensions are 10.25 X 3.5 X 1.25 inches.
- Effectively versatile
- The firm shape of the handle and the blade
- Fine FRN handle
- Inlayed with non-sliding material Kraton
- Handle becomes slippery when wet but is fine the other times
Best Full Tang Bushcraft Knife: Benchmade Bushcrafter 162 Fixed Outdoor Survival Knife
According to the bushcraft knife reviews, this is indeed the most flawless cutter for multi-tasking. Here, you get to enjoy the top-rated S30V stainless steel material. The G10 handle infused with titanium comes in a blue color, which improves the overall look of the product. These blades are made in the US; therefore, you can rest assured about the quality rating.
- S30V stainless steel blade
- 4.17mm blade thickness
- Good quality handle material
- It costs higher but also promises fine quality
What is a Bushcraft Knife?
A bushcraft knife is usually tough enough and very maneuverable because it can be used to complete various tasks uncommon for kitchen knives. The blade is mostly curved to fulfill more tasks. A bushcraft knife will accompany you on a trip in wild nature and will teach you how to survive in extreme conditions. It will help you to prepare food, build a temporary house, and gather wood for the fire. As you see, this device is very versatile, and choosing one is a serious process.
Who Makes Bushcraft Knives?
If you are going to replenish your collection of knives with a bushcraft knife, you must be 100% sure that you are getting the best product. Today, a lot of the world’s famous manufacturers produce such cutting devices, but not all of them deserve your attention. The ideal model should come with a thick blade to be used for chopping wood and cleaning fish. At the same time, the blade shouldn’t be too long because this device needs to be very handy. The blades should be stainless steel and carbon steel.
Some examples of the most popular brands who make the best ones are:
What Do You Use a Bushcraft Knife For?
A bushcraft knife is needed for a perfectly done woodcraft. While cutting wooden spoons or building traps, you always need a strong cutter with a curvy ergonomic handle. Ensure that the best budget bushcraft knife you choose has a strong edge. The tasks for which you can prefer using this type of blade are as follows:
- Wood work
- Preparing food
- Building a fire
You can perform all of these tasks smoothly with this cutter.
Bushcraft Knife VS Pocket Knife VS Survival Knife
- Pocket knives: They are foldable, smaller, and are easily portable.
- Survival knives: They are not foldable, larger, and perform various tasks brilliantly.
- Bushcraft knives: Best for wood cutting, has a shorter edge, comes with sharp points, and is perfect in size for portability.
Types of Best Bushcraft Knives
Bushcraft knives are mainly used to perform skinning and some other common survival tasks, including sharpening sticks and making various things from wood. But what are the main types of such devices, and how do they differ from each other? First of all, it is possible to distinguish between folding and fixed models.
Folding Bushcraft Knife
This model lacks durability but is easier to use. There is no need to have a special case for it, and you can be sure that you won’t damage your hand while removing it from the case. At the same time, the folding knife is not reliable enough. Pocket knives are mainly used to prepare food or to work with wood. A great example of such a model is the Spyderco bushcraft knife that is very popular today.
Fixed-Blade Bushcraft Knife
Of course, it depends on personal preference, but models with a fixed blade seem to be more reliable. They are more difficult to maintain but can be used for a great variety of tasks, including cutting figures from the wood. If you take proper care of your knife, it will serve you for many years.
Bushcraft Knife Buying Guide — What to Look at
In a situation when you get lost in the woods or are injured while hunting and are behind your team, you can use any knife. But the bushcraft knife was specially designed not to let down its owner in a difficult situation. So, let’s see how to choose such a device.
A functional survival knife does not have to be big. A large knife is cumbersome, so a large size is an inconvenience. Moreover, it turns to be extra weight in equipment. The best blade length is 3–5 inches, and the total length should not exceed 6–10 inches. Such dimensions make the knife comfortable to use, and a longer blade will only add extra weight.
For long stays in the wild, you will still take more specific tools (machete, cleaver, bivouac knife, ax, saw, or even a multitool) which are better suited for logging, chopping, and harvesting firewood, as well as for the equipment of your camp. Therefore, your main bushcraft knife does not need extra weight, large dimensions, or any additional elements.
Blade Shape and Design
There are two main types of knife blades:
The serrated blade is a great choice for self-defense and paramedics, but they are difficult to grind. This is undoubtedly the main disadvantage in a situation of extreme survival when the blade is intensively used in difficult conditions and requires constant care. In addition, such knives are not adapted to carving and wheelhouse.
The flat cutting edge is suitable for most survival situations. This type of blade copes with carving and chopping. An additional advantage of this standard blade is ease of sharpening with an ordinary stone, while the serrated blade requires special equipment and skills.
It is recommended to give preference to those bushcraft knives that come with a solid blade grind. Thin models should be avoided because they tend to reduce the strength of the blade.
Knives with a large angle come with a strong cutting edge, but the process of cutting turns to be more difficult. If you are going to prepare food with this device only, then choose a thin edge. A thinner blade has too much flexibility, and one that’s too thick is not suitable for the delicate work that is constantly in demand during survival.
It is important that the tip of the bushcraft knife is very durable because this is the most vulnerable spot.
Sharpening won’t be a real issue if you choose a high-quality device and don’t use it for heavy-duty tasks. If you are planning to use it for wood cutting, for example, be ready to sharpen it constantly. So, it is recommended to buy knives that can be sharpened at home and outdoors by means of stones, for example.
The two most common types of steel are used to make quality knives:
- Stainless steel blades are resistant to corrosion and serve particularly well in wet environments. They require less maintenance compared to carbon steel knives. Disadvantages: high cost, more complicated sharpening procedure, faster blade wear. Stainless: CPM 3v, CPM 154cm, CPM S35V, 440c, VG 10.
- Carbon steel blades will rust if they are not used for a long time or if they do not have a special coating. Many believe that carbon steel saves the cutting edge better than its stainless steel counterparts. Carbon/Alloy: 1095, 1085, 1080, 52100, 5190, D2, CPM D2, A2 and O1
The next important criterion in choosing knife is the material of its handle because if it cracks, using a knife will be a problem. Many people prefer a handle made of leather because it makes the knife ergonomic and saves it from slipping. However, keep in mind that it should be very durable first. General recommendations for materials are:
- Synthetic materials: Synthetic handle materials include Kraton, Micarta, rubber, plastic, and G10. These materials are resistant to water and last longer. However, they are difficult to clean and can last for a shorter span if not maintained well.
- Natural materials: Natural materials include wood, bone, leather, antler, and ivory. Wood and leather are the most favored natural materials. They feel good in the hand and also have strong durability. Regular oiling is the best way to maintain these materials.
While choosing a cutter, the sheath material also plays a major role. Some of the most used sheath materials include nylon, plastic, leather, Kydex, PVC, and many more. Synthetic sheaths work finest in coastal or rainforest areas. In case you are not comfortable with the sheath offered in your bushcraft knife, you can easily make a new one by following the DIY tutorials on the net.
Cheap Bushcraft Knife
The best bushcraft survival knife must have a good quality blade, handle, and sheath. Also, the blade thickness and length are the other important things to be kept in mind. You should be choosing a tool that performs all tasks smoothly. In case you have a tight budget and don’t know which brand to buy, check out the list below to find the right cutter for you:
Bushcraft Knife. Final Advice
Now it’s time to speak a bit more about our top pick, the Morakniv BushCraft Carbon Steel Survival Knife. This model is the best choice in our rating because it comes with two additional accessories: a diamond sharpener and firestarter. These tools will save you a lot of time if you are staying somewhere in the woods. You know that a sharp knife is one of the most important conditions for survival, so this set will never let you down! But these are not the only benefits of this bushcraft knife. The Morakniv BushCraft is the best bushcraft knife in 2023 because it comes with a blade that contains 0.6% carbon and chrome to prevent corrosion. This bushcraft knife is able to perform various survival tasks. In addition, it has an ergonomic handle, so it is safe from slipping out of your hands. To sum up, if you are a beginner or a professional hunter, choose a product that will definitely help you to survive even in the most extreme conditions.