|Survival Knife Assortment|
There are so many variables to consider when choosing survival knives. What style of survival knife should I choose? What brand of survival knives is best? How much should I spend? Size? Materials? All important questions to answer when choosing from the multitude of survival knives on the market today, but even these variables are just the tip of the iceberg.
The first thing you need to determine before choosing any survival knives is… how do you intend to use your survival knife? What tasks do intend to perform with it? Do you want a survival knife that you can rely on as a rugged chopper for processing firewood and use almost like a machete or hatchet so you don’t have to carry these additional items? Do you like to leverage your knife for rougher and tougher tasks like prying, scraping or digging? Or do you plan on carrying a separate machete or hatchet in your kit for these “tougher tasks” and would prefer a more intricate cutting tool for more detailed cuts like making triggers for traps or more precise bushcraft camp tasks? Are you planning on using your knife to process fish and small game? Do you plan on using your knife as a weapon for self-defense, or simply as a tool to help you accomplish tasks?
You see, how you plan to use your survival knife should be the primary determining factor in choosing the right survival knife for the job. Larger, longer and thicker knives are better for chopping and batoning, scraping, digging and your more labor demanding tasks. But these knives are not nearly as well-suited for more intricate tasks like making precise cuts like feather sticks, survival trap triggers, pot hangers, etc. This is why many outdoorsmen and women actually choose to own and carry several different kinds of survival knives, each serving a different intended purpose.
It’s obviously not realistic to carry a designated survival knife to serve each and every possible specific survival or outdoors task, so choosing a knife that can serve as many of those tasks as possible really well is the way to go. For this reason it would be a great exercise to make a list of the tasks that you would ideally like to be able to accomplish with your knife, evaluate those tasks (are they mostly demanding tasks or lighter-duty precise tasks, etc.) and choose a survival knife that would best fit the tasks you intend to use it for.
As usual, there are exceptions to every rule. In the experienced hands of a veteran woodsman or woman who truly knows how to leverage their survival knives, surprisingly intricate tasks can be accomplished with surprisingly large and cumbersome survival knives. The same is true of smaller and lighter duty knives. Many experienced survival knife users can also accomplish incredibly demanding tasks with their much smaller knives designed for much more intricate work… but this comes with experience, knowing the limits of your tools and what to reasonably expect of them, and knowing the proper techniques for doing such tasks safely and without risking damaging your knife.
If you are interested in learning more about survival knives, you can read about on our Choosing the Best Survival Knives page.