What Makes A Good Hunting Knife? 8 Things You Must Know

What Makes A Good Hunting Knife? 8 Things You Must Know

A Hunting Knife is one of the most important tools for outdoor activities. Not only are they used for hunting but also for skinning animals and even cutting bushes.

One of the biggest uses of hunting knives is we use them for self-defense in the wild. 

But do you know what makes a good hunting knife? and how to find a good hunting knife? Well, read this article till the end so you can find all your answers in a single window. 

When I started outdoor activities during my holidays, I came to know more about hunting knives and what are the benefits of using an excellent hunting knife while going to the wild. 

I became sure that a hunting knife differs from a regular knife and is absolutely more expensive than the regular one.

You must know this because a normal knife might break if you use it for outdoor activities. 

Currently, there are a ton of hunting knives available on the market. However, each of them does not work well. So, there are a few factors that you have to look into while purchasing a hunting knife. 

Ideally, when we talk in short what makes a good hunting knife?

A perfect hunting knife is one that offers superior quality, and durability, and can do all kinds of survival activities in the wild. 

So, to learn all of them, you should probably first learn about what is a hunting knife and that is why I collected all the information together to give you a simple idea. 

Also Read: 

What Is a Hunting Knife?

What is a hunting knife? and what is the difference between a hunting knife and a kitchen knife?

Well, Hunting knives are mostly designed for cutting rather than stabbing. Hunting knives are made in such a way that their blades can skin off the flesh of animals and cut wood in the wild.

On the other side, kitchen knives are designed for preparing food and chopping in the kitchens. They are also commonly known as the chef knife.

Kitchen knives cannot be used for hunting and survival activities because the blade is thin and usually does not have a sharp tip.

The biggest downset is the blades might break or bend if you apply too much force.

What Makes a Good Hunting Knife? 

If you are planning to get a professional hunting knife, make sure you look into all these features of a hunting knife.

Buying a hunting knife is like an investment and you don’t want to change your knife often. Be sure you look into all these factors seriously.

1. Built Quality

As there are many kinds of knives available in the market keep in mind not all have good build quality.

Most manufacturers add an extra additive to the material just to reduce the cost of production and this reduces the quality and durability of a knife.

Good built quality must ensure perfection in the knife with perfect construction, look, and feel.

It must also ensure every part of a hunting knife must be perfectly built. From the right moment you touch the knife, you must feel how good the knife is made.

Therefore, getting a hunting knife never compromises the quality because of the cost of the knife as getting a quality knife is an investment.

Also, make sure you are getting a knife from a genuine place.

2. Material 

There are usually two types of material that are very common for making knives

  1. Carbon steel
  2. Stainless Steel

Carbon steel is one of the best steel for hunting knives as they are extremely strong and durable.

So make sure you try getting a carbon steel knife with a stainless coating. Yes, they are slightly more expensive than the normal ones but it is worth investing in.

Carbon steel knives usually have a sharp edge over stainless ones and the best thing is you won’t face any kind of lag on these kinds of knives. Carbon steel knives are super easy to re-sharpen.

Stainless knives are mostly preferred in kitchens for cutting vegetables and meats. The advantage of a stainless knife is it does not rust easily and can be easily used with any precautions.

They are resistant, and you don’t have to worry about oiling them frequently.

However, the disadvantage of a stainless knife is its sharpness as they are less sharp, and because of this, it lags. 

3. Sharpness 

A hunting knife must be sharp enough so it can cut anything in the wild. Hunting knives are used for a wide range of purposes like cutting bushes and bones.

That is try getting a High carbon steel knife as they are sharper than stainless ones.

There are many methods of sharpening a hunting knife. However, do not mess up if you do not know the proper angle for sharpening a knife.

4. Blade Thickness 

This factor might not be so important if you are using a kitchen knife.

However, it is quite important for a hunting knife. Well, this is likely the first thing you have to look for if you are looking for an excellent hunting knife. 

The thickness of the blade directly affects the strength of the knife. You don’t want your knife to break into two pieces while cutting some bushes.

So always try getting a thick knife because a thick blade can withstand lateral force and improves the durability of the knife. 

Also, make sure the tip of the knife is enough thick so it won’t bend when it falls on the ground.  

5. Design 

There are many types of hunting knife designs available in the market but a few of them are very common like the Drop point, clip point, and Trailing Point. I prefer the curved hunting knife. 

It is obvious each hunting knife blade has a unique design made for a particular task.

So I highly recommend you know about the type of blade you are looking for to get the maximum performance from the blade.

6. Portability 

Always choose a knife that is portable enough. There are many designs of hunting knives but not all of them are portable.

The portability of a knife means it should easily fit in the pocket and doesn’t weigh much.

Most hunters are concerned about this because usually, a hunter carries a lot of stuff like a compound bow or a sniper along with many other hunting accessories.

Unlike all this stuff you don’t want more weight. 

7. Additional Tools 

When you are in the wild, a knife isn’t just used for hunting but for different purposes as well.

A professional hunting knife must include a saw, axes, and other tools like a Magnesium fire starter and a seat belt cutter. All these tools are very much essential in the wild.

Every hunter has a different hunting style and the choice of choosing a knife differs from the individual. However you must always look for some extra features in the knife.

8. Fixed vs Folding Blade 

Your first big choice before you get a knife is to decide whether to go with foldable hunting knives or fixed ones. But do you know what does fixed blade means?

A fixed knife has a blade that is fixed permanently and has no moving parts in the knife. We generally consider them more strong and more reliable than foldable ones. 

But the only downside of a fixed knife is you have to carry the knife with a sheath and wear it. They are slightly bigger than the foldable knife even though with the same blade size. 

On the other side, a folding knife can easily fold back and reduce its size. It has a locking system that helps to prevent the blade from accidentally opening when it’s kept in its pockets.

Well, foldable knives are portable enough, this is the only reason they are chosen by most people.

However, foldable knives are not strong enough compared to fixed-blade knives. I also have a foldable knife but after a few days of usage the lock started getting loose and the blade started moving. 

If you want a knife for professional use, I recommend a fixed-blade knife as they are more durable and efficient compared to foldable ones.

The choice of blades might vary because it is practical and might vary according to the hunter’s comfort and choice. 

Types of Hunting Knives 

As there are many types of hunting knives available for different activities and each hunting knife serves a different purpose. 

You don’t want to use a kitchen knife for hunting. That is why it is the key rule to select a particular knife for a specific work.

These are all the different knives used for different purposes. So make sure you know your work and choose a knife.

# Camp Knife 

These are some of the most commonly chosen knives for hunting and outdoor activities. They are simple and small which helps you to carry the knife easily. 

We use camping knives for a variety of purposes like food preparation, fire starting, cutting small wood, and splitting kindling. 

Camp knives are simply multi-purpose knives chosen by a lot of professionals because they are quite comfortable and securely fit in your hands.

# Boning Knife 

The type of knife is typically used for separating the meat from the bones, as the blade has a very sharp edge and you can easily cut the meat.

If you are someone who enjoys hunting bucks and turkey, this is what you should go with. I highly suggest you take a boning knife as a hunting knife won’t work well as a boning knife.

# Bowie Knife 

The advantage of utilizing a bowie knife is that its sharp edge on both sides of the tips encourages you to easily cut from any direction you want to.

This has been one of the favorite knives among hunters as the blade length is long enough that gives enough power to cut the meat easily. 

Also, they are considered to be one of the best knives for survival situations like making a shelter, searching for food, and absolutely protecting yourself.  

# Buck Knife

Buck knives were made in America for hunters who wanted portable knives that could easily fit in their pockets.

The best part of a buck knife is that the knife is foldable and it becomes pretty small, so you don’t have to worry about carrying your knife. 

Buck Knives have always been a very common knife for camping and outdoor activities and that is why they are growing more in recent days.

Also, the buck knives became famous for knife collectors because the knife comes with a lot of unique designs that are widely collected.

# Skinning Knife 

Skinning knives are particularly designed for separating the skin layers from the meat. So skinning knives help to penetrate the skin layers and separate the skin from the meat quickly and easily. 

They usually have a very sharp tip and a curved body that helps during penetrating.

To use a skinning knife you must gain enough experience because they are dangerous to use as compared to other types of knives.

Hunting Knives and Their Uses

What are the primary uses of a hunting knife?  Well, a hunting knife is one of the best tools that every hunter must invest in. When you are in the wild you do not know what situation you can get into.

At that time knives became the most important tool.

Also, Hunting knives are used for a wide range of things like cutting, trimming bushes, safety, and cutting strings of clothes.

However, some of the most common usages of hunting knives in the wild are:

  • Slicing
  • Skinning
  • Butchering
  • Gutting
  • Deboning.

It doesn’t matter if you are a compound bowhunter or sniper. We recommend it each and every person must keep a knife when they are going into the wild.


In conclusion, we can say that these are all the most important things that you have to look for if you want a good quality hunting knife.

In short, when we talk about what makes an excellent hunting knife the most important thing that comes to mind is built quality, material, and sharpness.

There are many other factors that I have listed. However, these are primarily some of the most important factors that you have to look into.

You might think expensive hunting knives are always the best. But this is not always the case. Never trust a brand blindly. 

In conclusion, we can say these are all the most important things that you have to look for if you want a good quality hunting knife.

Finally, all the information that I have provided in this blog is a mix-up of my experience and also based on the deep research that I have done.

So, we won’t lose your valuable time and money.

If you have any feedback, let us know in the comment section. Using your comments we can improve our content.

FAQ: What To Look For In A Hunting Knife 

Here are some of the most commonly asked questions that people want to know. Read this section to clear all your doubts.

Q1. What should be the average length of a good hunting knife?

Ans: Different hunting knives have different lengths. However, the average length of a hunting knife should be in-between 3 to 6 inches. This is the size that is mostly chosen by professional hunters.

Q2. How to Sharp a Hunting Knife? 

Ans: Sharpening a blade seems to be a simple job although it’s not as easy as it looks. You must place the blade at a proper angle or else it might even damage the metal.

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