Types of survival knives

Types of Survival Knives: How to Pick the Right One

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When it comes to survival situations, having the right tools can make all the difference. And one tool that should be at the top of your list is a survival knife. A good survival knife is versatile, reliable, and can handle the rigors of the great outdoors.

But with so many different types of survival knives to choose from, how do you know which one is right for you? In this blog, we’ll explore the different types of survival knives, their features, and how to choose the best one for your needs.


Exploring Different Types of Survival Knives

When it comes to survival knives, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Different types of survival knives serve different purposes, and what works for one person may not work for another. So, let’s dive into the world of survival knives and explore the different types available.

Boot knife

Understanding Boot Knives

Boot knives are compact, fixed blade knives that can be discreetly carried in the boot or pant leg. These knives are useful for self-defense, everyday carry, and survival situations. Boot knives typically have a short blade length, making them easily concealable.

They often feature a single sharp edge, allowing for precise cutting and stabbing motions. The choice of handle material, blade length, and blade type varies, depending on personal preference. Additionally, some boot knives come with a belt clip, enabling users to conveniently hang the knife from any part of their uniform.

Features of a Buck Hunting Knife

Buck hunting knives are known for their quality, reliability, and sharpness. They typically have a fixed blade, full tang, and high-quality stainless steel blade. The blade length, blade type, and handle material of buck hunting knives may vary, depending on the specific model.

These knives are designed for hunting, skinning, and field dressing game. Buck knives are favored by hunters for their durability, edge retention, and ease of maintenance. The razor sharp blade of a buck hunting knife ensures precise and clean cuts, making it an essential tool for hunters in the field.

Tactical pen

Concealed Knives and their Utility

Concealed knives, also known as hidden knives, are designed to be discreetly carried for personal protection. They come in various forms, such as belt buckles, pens, or necklaces, making them easy to carry without drawing attention.

Concealed knives often have folding blades, allowing for compact storage and quick deployment. These knives serve as useful tools in self-defense situations, providing a surprise advantage. Concealed knives are legal in many jurisdictions, but it’s important to check the local laws before carrying one.

Combat Knives and their Role in Survival

Combat knives are specifically designed for military, law enforcement, and survival scenarios. They typically have a fixed blade, full tang, and strong, sharp edge. Combat knives are useful for various survival tasks, such as cutting, prying, and digging.

The blade length, blade type, and handle material of combat knives may vary, depending on the intended use. These knives are built to withstand high-stress situations, making them a reliable tool in survival situations.

Military Knife

The Versatility of a Military Knife

Military knives, also known as tactical knives or military survival knives, are designed for military personnel, survivalists, and outdoor enthusiasts. They are versatile tools, useful for cutting, prying, digging, and survival tasks.

Military survival knives often have a fixed blade, full tang, serrated edge, and a strong, durable handle. These knives can handle tough, demanding situations, making them a valuable tool in survival scenarios. Military survival knives are built to high standards, ensuring reliability, durability, and resistance to corrosion.

Why Choose a Ka-Bar Knife?

Ka-Bar knives are renowned for their quality, durability, and versatility. These knives are popular among military, survival, and outdoor enthusiasts. Ka-Bar knives typically have a fixed blade, full tang, drop point, and high-quality steel blade.

They are well-balanced, making them easy to handle and use for various survival tasks. Ka-Bar knives have a rich history, having been used by the U.S. Marine Corps since the 1940s.

Rambo knife

The Iconic Rambo Knife and its Features

The Rambo knife, made famous by the movie series, is a survival knife known for its ruggedness and versatility. It typically has a large, fixed blade, serrated edge, hollow handle, and survival kit components.

The Rambo knife is useful for various survival tasks, such as hunting, fishing, and self-defense. While the movie version of the knife may not be practical, there are real-world versions available with similar features. The choice of blade material, handle material, and blade length can vary, depending on personal preference.

Folding Survival Knife: Compact and Convenient

Folding survival knives, also known as pocket knives, offer the convenience of compact storage and easy carry. These knives have folding blades, allowing for safe, pocket-friendly storage when not in use.

Folding survival knives often have stainless steel blades, strong locking mechanisms, and pocket clips for carry options.

They are useful for everyday carry, outdoor activities, and survival situations. The choice of blade type, handle material, and blade length varies, depending on personal preference.

Knife cutting a stick

What are the advantages and disadvantages of fixed blade versus folding survival knives?

Fixed blade knives are more durable and reliable, ideal for heavy-duty tasks. However, they are bulkier to carry. Folding knives are compact and easier to carry but may not be as sturdy. Consider your specific needs and preferences when choosing between the two types of survival knives.

Tactical Knife: A Must-Have for Survivalists?

Tactical knives, designed for survival, military, and law enforcement applications, are versatile and reliable tools. They typically have a fixed blade, full tang, serrated edge, and a blade made of high-quality steel. A high quality tactical knife is a very important part of a soldier’s arsenal.

Tactical knives must work as tools and also as weapons. When selecting one of these knives, quality is a must. You don’t want to be in a life or death situation only to have your knife break. Tactical knives are useful for survival tasks, self-defense, and everyday carry. The blade length, blade type, handle material, and sheath type may vary, depending on the specific tactical knife.

These knives are built to handle high-stress situations, making them a must-have tool for survivalists.

Tanto knife

The Unique Tanto Knife

The tanto knife is a Japanese short sword known for its sharp edge. The tanto knife has a strong, straight blade, making it ideal for piercing and thrusting. The tanto knife’s point is different from other knives, resembling a chisel.

The tanto knife is often used in military survival situations due to its durability and corrosion resistance. The tanto knife’s blade length can vary, allowing for personal preference in choosing the right size.

Anatomy of an Ultimate Survival Knife

A good survival knife is made up of different components, each playing a crucial role in its overall functionality. Let’s take a closer look at the different parts of a survival knife and the importance of each.

Importance of Size in Survival Knives

The size of a survival knife should be based on personal preference and the intended use. A large survival knife can handle heavy-duty tasks, such as chopping wood or building shelters.

A smaller survival knife, like a pocket knife, is lightweight and easy to carry, making it suitable for everyday carry or survival kits. The blade length of a survival knife should be considered, as different tasks require different blade lengths.

The overall length of the survival knife, including the handle, affects the knife’s balance and maneuverability.

Knife on a log

The Blade: Heart of a Survival Knife

The blade of a survival knife can come in different types, such as drop point, clip point, or tanto. A serrated edge or blade can be useful for cutting tough materials, like rope or wood.

The blade material of a survival knife, such as stainless steel or carbon steel, determines the knife’s sharpness, corrosion resistance, and strength. A double edge blade knife, with sharp edges on both sides, allows for versatile cutting and self-defense options.

The blade shape, like the hollow handle of the Rambo knife, can provide additional storage space for survival essentials.

Understanding the Significance of Tang

The tang of a survival knife, whether full tang, partial tang, or hidden tang, affects the knife’s strength and durability. A full tang knife, where the blade extends the full length of the handle, provides optimal strength for heavy-duty tasks.

A partial tang knife, where the tang only extends part of the blade, may be lighter, but sacrifices some strength. The handle material, such as rubber, micarta, or leather, is attached to the tang, providing the knife with a secure grip. The tang of the survival knife, along with the handle material, affects the knife’s balance and overall weight.

Tips to Choose the Right Knife Tip

The type of knife point, such as drop point, clip point, or tanto, should be chosen based on the intended use of the knife. A drop point knife, with a strong, sharp point, is versatile and suitable for a variety of survival tasks. A clip point knife, with a sharp, curved edge, allows for precise cutting and piercing.

A tanto knife, with a chisel-like point, offers excellent point strength, making it useful for tactical or survival purposes. The knife tip should be sharp, strong, and resistant to damage, ensuring the knife’s reliability in survival situations.

Diagram of knife types

Deciphering Blade Types

There are different blade types, such as survival, hunting, bowie, or folding knives, each with its own advantages and uses. A survival knife, with a fixed blade, full tang, and strong construction, is designed to handle survival tasks in various environments.

It is crucial to choose the best survival knife for whatever crisis confronts you. A hunting knife, with a sharp, drop point blade, is specifically designed for hunting, skinning, and field dressing game. A bowie knife, with a large, clip point blade, is versatile and useful for survival, hunting, and combat situations.

A folding knife, with a stainless steel blade, offers the convenience of folding for easy carry, making it suitable for everyday carry or survival kits.

Maintenance of a Survival Knife

Now that you have the perfect survival knife, it’s important to know how to take good care of it. Proper maintenance of your survival knife will ensure its longevity, performance, and reliability in survival situations. Let’s take a look at some tips on maintaining your survival knife.

Tips on Taking Care of Your Knife

To keep your survival knife in top condition, it’s essential to follow proper care and maintenance procedures. Here are some tips to help you take care of your knife:

  • Clean the knife after each use, removing any dirt, debris, or food particles that can cause corrosion or damage the blade.
  • Dry the knife thoroughly, especially the blade, to prevent water or moisture from causing rust.
  • Lubricate the knife, particularly the blade pivot, with oil or lubricant to ensure smooth opening and closing of folding knives.
  • Store the knife in a sheath, knife roll, or knife block, protecting the blade from accidental contact and maintaining the knife’s edge.
  • Regularly inspect the knife, checking the blade, handle, tang, and locking mechanism, to identify any signs of wear, damage, or need for repair.

Following these simple tips will help keep your survival knife sharp, reliable, and ready for any survival situation.

Sharpening a knife

Sharpening Your Survival Knife: A Basic Guide

The sharpness of your survival knife can make a world of difference in its cutting performance. Regular sharpening ensures that your knife is always ready for the tasks at hand. Here’s a basic guide to sharpening your survival knife:

  • Use the appropriate sharpening tool, such as a whetstone, sharpening rod, or knife sharpener, to maintain the knife’s edge.
  • Follow the knife’s blade angle, typically between 15 to 20 degrees, while sharpening, ensuring the blade retains its original shape.
  • Start with a coarse grit, gradually progressing to finer grits, to achieve the desired sharpness of the blade.
  • Apply consistent pressure and use smooth, controlled strokes while sharpening the knife, maintaining the blade’s edge symmetry.
  • Test the sharpness of the knife, either by paper cutting or the thumb test, to ensure the blade is sharp and ready for use.

With regular sharpening, your survival knife will always be sharp, reliable, and ready to handle any survival situation.

Legality of Carrying Survival Knives

While survival knives are essential tools, it’s important to understand the legalities of carrying them in different regions. The laws regarding knife carry can vary from one jurisdiction to another, so it’s crucial to know the regulations of the area you plan to carry a survival knife.

Knife carry laws vary from region to region, so it’s essential to know the laws of the area. Some regions may have restrictions on knife carry even in survival situations. Research the knife carry laws of the specific place you plan to carry a survival knife.

Urban areas often have stricter knife carry laws compared to rural or wilderness areas. Consult local authorities or legal resources for the most accurate information on knife carry.

Legal scales

How Does the Law Vary Across Regions?

Knife carry laws can differ significantly from one region to another. Different countries, states, and even cities may have their own knife carry regulations. Blade length, blade type, and handle material are common factors that affect knife carry legality.

Some regions may have different knife carry laws for everyday carry versus survival situations. Stay updated on the knife carry laws of the different regions you plan to travel to or carry a survival knife.


Survival knives are essential tools for outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers. With a wide variety of options available, it’s important to choose the right type of survival knife that suits your specific needs.

Whether it’s a boot knife, a buck hunting knife, a concealed knife, or a military knife, each type offers unique features and advantages.

When selecting a survival knife, consider factors such as size, blade type, tang, and knife tip. These elements contribute to the knife’s functionality and durability in different survival situations.

Knife on a tree

Proper maintenance and care are also crucial to ensure the longevity and effectiveness of your survival knife.

It’s important to familiarize yourself with the legalities of carrying a survival knife in your region. Laws may vary, so it’s essential to understand the regulations and restrictions before carrying a survival knife.

In conclusion, choosing the right survival knife can make a significant difference in your outdoor adventures and emergency situations.

By understanding the various types of survival knives, their features, and how to maintain them, you can make an informed decision and be prepared for any survival scenario.

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