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Best Outdoor/Survival knife

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gear, Survival Equipment & More' started by saintalex, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. saintalex


    Mar 14, 2011

    i am kind of new here and was looking for advice.

    i want to purchase a good knife for outdoor activities.

    i am thinking of having blade about 6-8 inch, made of one solid steel, no hallow handle, good steel, price range $300.

    i wanted a knife that will take a lot of abuse, can hold edge good.

    also wanted one with saw at the back.

    i was recommended this knifes

    1. Buck 119
    2. Dark Ops Interceptor 911
    3. Becker R7

    also how important is the saw at the back? does it even work?

    please give me some advice, i am really lost.

    thx for help!
  2. Esav Benyamin

    Esav Benyamin MidniteSuperMod Staff Member Super Mod

    Apr 6, 2000
    I am moving this to our Outdoor Gear, Survival Equipment & More forum.

    The Buck 119 is a classic which has served many outdoorsmen well for many years.
    The Dark Ops knife is a mall ninja fantasy blade.
    Any Becker is a great choice for outdoors.

    We also have Buck and Becker forums here where you can discuss their knives at more length.
  3. Fletcher Knives

    Fletcher Knives STEEL BREATHING BLADE MAESTRO Moderator

    Aug 30, 2007
    Out of those three, I would recommend the Becker. If you're looking for a production knife in that size and don't mind spending about $130+, check out the ESEE-6. It's an awesome knife, can take anything you can throw at it, and has one of the best warranties in the business. No saw on the back, but I think you should stay away from that idea anyway. You'll get a lot more use out of your knife and a lot more comfort in different hold positions without saw teeth on the spine. I would suggest that you get a folding saw or pocket chainsaw or something like that to carry with it.
  4. dialton


    Jan 1, 2007
    Second all of that. Esee has a great reputation and I love the design. Also take a look at Swamp Rat knives. They also have a sub forum here.
  5. Bear Claw Chris Lappe

    Bear Claw Chris Lappe Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 20, 2001
    The Becker B7 or the ESEE-6 would be perfect.

    Personally, while I'm sure there are some that folks think are OK, in my experience, saws on the back of a knife blade are more "gimmick" than real world functional.
  6. TheTiSkull


    Mar 6, 2011
    If the saw on the back is a must, go spyderco warrior
  7. saintalex


    Mar 14, 2011
    i looked at ESEE-6, and it says that blade is 5.75". I am not an expert on outdoor knifes, but is not too small?

    Also wanted to ask about handle of the knife. When i was looking at Buck special, it looks like if there going to be water or blood on the handle it will be slippery.

    Any advice on that?
  8. gunknifenut


    Jun 9, 2006
    Welcome to BF and the outdoors area of BF.
    With a price range of $300, you have A LOT of choices..the Becker is a good one, ESEE is also good...SwampRat and Busse make knives that can survive just about anything.
    I also like Cold Steel's SanMai stuff, like the Recon Scout Bowie..I have one, and its pretty nice.
    If you are looking at the BK7, you should check out the BK9 from Becker..I like it a bit more than the BK7. And you can do just about the same tasks with both.
    We also have some great makers in here..hang out for a while, and see what you like, and read some reviews..it won't take long to decide you need more than one!
  9. Fletcher Knives

    Fletcher Knives STEEL BREATHING BLADE MAESTRO Moderator

    Aug 30, 2007
    Yep. 5.75" of cutting edge is plenty.
  10. dougo83


    Feb 28, 2008
    Too small for what, exactly? I carry an RC-4 (now ESEE 4) and it does everything I need in an outdoors/survival knife. Of course, I coupled it with a Swiss Army Farmer. It is the best combo I have carried.

    The Buck has been a standby for decades. It could get slippery with blood on it, but I don't see that as a huge concern in the field. If it is, get one with finger grooves. :barf:

    Also, with a $300 price to work with, I would get an ESEE 4 or ESEE 6, a SAK of some sort, a decent packable axe/hatchet and something like a Buck folding saw.
  11. sambo.


    Dec 30, 2009
    for that kind of cabbage, you can own some of the finest steel ever honed to an edge and held by man.

    of these three, the Becker.

    definatly the Becker.

    'Dork Ops' is to be avoided at all costs.
    Buck makes some nice knives.

    IMHO: saw edges on the back of knives are nigh on useless.

    i advise you to look at the offerings from Fallkniven before settling on a blade.
  12. wildmike


    Nov 17, 2007
    For half your limit or thereabouts you can pick up a Fallkniven S1 from kniveshipfree.com.

    A 4"-5" blade is plenty especialy when backed up by a chopper such as an axe (Estwing E44a 16"camp axe is a good choice). Or if you have the money a GB or Wetterlings in the 19" range.

    Swamp Rat knives also has the Ratrmandu available which is an excelent stout knife, if you like the choil.

    For $300 you could have an excellent custom made by a bunch of quality makers here on the forum.

    Check out the WSS bushcraft knife challege thread a bunch of good makers have knives being reviewed in the competition.
  13. Bear Claw Chris Lappe

    Bear Claw Chris Lappe Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 20, 2001
    Nope, you can pretty much handle any real world camp/outdoor chores with a blade that size.

    You'd have to get it pretty bloody for the Buck's handle to get very slippery. They've been using that material for a loooooong time and there's a reason it's popular with users.
  14. saintalex


    Mar 14, 2011

    I have an Ontario spec plus marine SP1 knife right now. it is a little bit heavy. Now if i will go outdoors i need something lighter. How is Beck bk9 or ESEE-6 compare?

    Wanted to ask is it better to carry a good axe or machete?

  15. Shotgun


    Feb 3, 2006
    A little fuzzy. Are you asking if you should take a hatchet or a machete over a big knife or are you asking which is better a hatchet or a machete.

    Hatchet vs machete depends on what you need to do with it. Brush and trail clearing-machete. Chopping and splitting-hatchet.

    As for wether or not a machete or hatchet is better than a big knife depends on your preference really. IMO a hatchet or machete is better than a big knife.

    However, someone will be along and disagree with everything I just said shortly. :D
  16. Kirk_Ferentz


    Feb 16, 2010
    The becker is a beast ... simple and classic. I want one myself. Maybe the 9'' version. Buuuut ... not to carry. for that I want more like a 3 to 5 inch blade, and not one that is so thick (something that thick is really made for chopping and, if need be, prying and such. I'd probably take it on a backpacking trip as an axe substitute. But otherwise, that is a lot of metal to be lugging around.

    For that reason, you may want to look at the becker campanion. A more reasonable and useable size. The ESEE knives also have a great reputation. The ESEE 4 seems to be the most populare and the one I would choose for an overall carry knife.

    For me, I went with a swamp rat and love it. if you want stainless (I will go with a good carbon steel if I am in the woods any time) then fallkniven or some of the bark river stainless knives also look good. Busse knives are also great. Busses are made of INFI which is a corrosion resistant carbon steel (though not stainless).
  17. ChapmanPreferred


    Oct 7, 2006
    Spyderco Warrior has a Serrated edge on the spine, not a true saw.

    I do carry a Rock Salt by Spyderco with my in my day pack. It works well for my needs in that size range.
  18. sodak

    sodak Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 26, 2004
    You might want to go hang out at the Busse subforum for a while.
  19. kgd


    Feb 28, 2007
    Welcome to our little Outdoors nook and thanks to Esav for directing you to the right place.

    I will say that you are coming in with a very narrow mindset as to what size of knife you want. In fact, if you gage the outdoor community here about the most versatile knife size for outdoor use, the majority of folks will tell you that between 3.75 - 5" blade length is optimal.

    Now, there are folks who prefer mid-sized knives in the category that you state, but more commonly, the folks that do so also carry a small knife which is used in the majority of cutting chores. Small companion knives might be a folding knife like a SAK or other folder or a 3-3.5" fixed blade. The bigger knife is used for camp chores, wood splitting and food prep.

    When you say you want a knife that can take a lot of abuse, this sounds exactly like something an ad-copy would say advertising a knife. The question is, why do you want to abuse your knife? I certainly have my disagreements with my 'survival minded' brethren who like to dream up all kinds of weird fantasy scenarios about how they could use their knives. I even fell into that mindset for a while. But after really using knives in the outdoors, I came to more realistic conclusions about how I use my knives, what tasks are best suited to my type of camping and environment. Worrying about knife breakage is something people get obsessive about for little reason. I've done all the outdoor things I've needed to do, including the dreaded act of batoning thick wood, with 0.1" thick old hickory kitchen knives and have really come to terms with the fact that knife breakage is a rare thing to have happen. Worrying about knife breakage is counterproductive and leads people into choosing knives that aren't really well suited to their actual use patterns.

    I have also found that there was a long journey in finding what I now consider the best knives for me. What I realize now, is that nobody could have told me what my preferred knives are today would be back then. I probably wouldn't have listened, had my own preconceptions or I just wouldn't understand how to translate my style of using a knife in my environment from all the divergent, often conflicting but rarely completely wrong advise that is out there. I had to learn through experimenting with different blade lengths, different blade styles, handle configurations all the while increasing my outdoor skills as I went along. It was actually a fun journey. I also found out that what works best in one environment, isn't necessarily the best in another environment. In short, there is no such thing as a perfect knife. There are good knives and well respected knives that many people like, but nothing considered a universal for all conditions, styles or environments.

    In fact, focussing on the knife is totally the wrong tact and is more likely to lead you astray. Focus on developing your skills. Visit W&SS regularly and test out the kinds of activities and things people are doing and talking about. Use the knife that you have and then figure out what its deficiencies are, what you think might be the best improvements and when you are ready invest in another blade go for an upgrade. Just make sure that your upgrade js based on your learned experiences of what you want in the next knife. Not on others opinions. Of three you selected, I would suggest the buck119, only because it is the cheapest and through nostalgia, that is the very blade that set me onto the path that got me to where I am today. Its a great, robust knife and not as wide as the BK-7.

    I'd also invite you to visit the W&SS forum and check out the bushcrafter knife challenge thread. Not only will you get some great eye candy of fantastic knives for outdoor applications, but you get a good idea through the selected tests designed by the reviewers of what to look for in a great outdoor blade.

    Again, welcome, stick around here and share your learning experience with our community!
  20. D R E

    D R E

    May 25, 2000
    I use green scrub pads on the handle, guard and butt. Gives the handle a grippier feel and also dulls the "shine". One thing nice about potential slippage is the substantial guard on the 119. You will probably never slip past the guard up onto the blade.

    I have and have had many of the knives mentioned in other posts and find that I gravitate back to the 119 for many reasons. Not because its the best steel, the most ergonomic, the "name" to own, etc. Not a chopper, prybar, super zombie slayer, just a basic, no frills cutting tool that does what a knife should do; cut stuff. There's something to be said for that :)

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