If a hunting knife is what you’re in the market for, then you’re in the right place at Unlimited Wares. Tactical hunting knives are available as well as handmade hunting knives and a large selection of skinning knives.
Hunting Knives: Buying Tips and Techniques
As the name implies, a hunting knife is a knife that you use for hunting animals for food and for the preparation of the game, such as skinning the animal and splitting its ribcage and bone. Before buying one, you should consider the same factors when buying any kind of knife. This includes the size, blade design and shape, as well as the handle. In addition, you should also know the type of hunting you want to do.
Hunting Knives vs Survival Knives
Through the years, many hunters are arguing on the comparison between hunting knives and survival knives. Some people even interchange one over the other, which causes confusion. Although they may have some similarities, the biggest difference is hunting knives require the ability to skin game. Survival knives are also called “all-around” knives, but hunting knives are basically designed for hunting food and preparation only.
Fixed blade vs Folding Knives
Basically, hunting knives are cutting rather than stabbing, which is why you can choose either the folding type or the fixed-blade type. With folding knives, a reliable lock mechanism is needed for opening and closing. You can carry it on your pocket or in a small sheath. However, fixed-blade hunting knives are more durable than folding knives. This is because they have no moving parts and the blade runs through the center of the handle. In short, folding knives are more applicable to occasional hunters and fixed-blade types are for dedicated hunters.
Types of Hunting Knives
Generally speaking, there are three major types of hunting knives. They are categorized according to the size of the animals you like to hunt.
- Small Game Knives - Small game species include rabbits, hares, tree squirrels, foxes, and birds. This means that you really do not need large, heavy hunting knives for them. Experts agree that a blade length of 3-6 cm long is ideal for such animals.
- Medium game knives – Medium game animals are deer, kangaroos, goats, sheep, and pigs. A 6-8 cm blade length is highly recommended so that you can skin such animals successfully, because their skins provide little resistance to this size.
- Large game knives - Moose, zebra, hartebeest, wildebeest, waterbuck, buffalo, and other similar sized animals belong to this category. Their skins are thick and do not easily tear off. A larger and heavier skinner is required for the job.
Hunting Knives Features
Just like buying any kind of knife, the three most important factors you should consider in choosing the right hunting knife are blade design or shapes, blade material, and handle.
- Clip Point Blades – This blade is thin, flat, and has a well-defined point, making it ideal for specialized hunting jobs such as piercing deep holes and field dressing. This type of blade is therefore suited for occasional hunter who has miscellaneous camp activities.
- Drop Point Blades – Unlike the clip point, drop point hunting knives have one sharp side only. It has no sharp tip, making it easier to use for skinning animals without damaging the meat. Therefore, this blade type is best for big game hunters.
- Skinner hunting knives – This type of knives offer wide, sweeping blades, along with a sharpened hook above the tip of the blade. Despite being specifically designed for skinning of big game animals, you can use them for other game cleaning chores.
- Gut hook hunting knives – This type of hunting knives features a sharpened semi-circle C-shape edge and a gut hook to cut open the abdomen of an animal without affecting the quality of the meat.
Besides the design of the blade, it is also important that you consider the material (or type of steel) used. Below are some of the most popular ones:
- S30V - This steel is considered as high-end, but offers an exceptional toughness and rust resistance. However, it is quite difficult to sharpen than the others.
- 420HC - This medium-carbon stainless steel offers high resistance to corrosion. However, it is not as hard as S30V, and therefore easier to sharpen.
- 154CM – This stainless steel is high in carbon and is also highly resistant to wear. This material is hard enough, allowing its edge to retain very well.
- VG-10 - This material and 154CM belongs to the same class. It is also a high-wear stainless steel, but offers higher resistance to corrosion.
Your hunting knife will be useless if its handle is not comfortable to your hands. Knife handles can be made of wood, leather, plastic, bone, or horn. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages. On the other hand, synthetic handle materials (such as ABS and Kraton) are lightweight and economical. For safety purposes, handles with a finger stop or guard is highly recommended.
Now that you have idea on what to buy, check out our wide selection of hunting knives!