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Best knife for batoning

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by tenbore, Apr 28, 2010.

  1. tenbore


    Apr 26, 2010

    I'm new here.I have a background with axes but in recent years,I find that I get winded rather easily when swinging one.I like to camp in fall and winter sometimes and I find that a saw and large knife serves the purpose without getting too out of breath.

    I have a well worn Cold Steel Trail Master (carbon V) that is satisfactory but I desire to get another knife as a possible replacement/backup or maybe even an improvement.

    I don't need advice on a general purpose knife as I use a much smaller knife for that.The knife I'm looking for will be used 98% for heavy duty use such as batoning.

    Hopefully,it would cost less than 200.00.Is there a general consensus here on the best knife for batoning?As I said,it will be used for heavy duty more than anything.

    Any opinions based on field experience?

    I did a search and couldn't find anything so hope what has probably been covered a great deal is not too redundant and repetitious.

    Appreciate any feedback.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2010
  2. gomipile


    Apr 17, 2010
    The Becker BK9 is an excellent choice for that type of use.
  3. Dag-nabit


    Jan 6, 2009
    You will get lots of opinions on what is the best knife for batoning, all, or most of which, will be valid.

    I won't claim these to be the best, because there are too many personal factors involved in determining what is best for each individual.

    However, two that I own and use for batoning with great success are the Fallkniven A2 and the Bark River Bravo 2.

    Both are good size (approx. 8" blade) and robust sturdy knives.

    I have no hesitation recommending either of these knives.

    Good luck with finding the right knife for your needs. :thumbup:

    Fallkniven A2 and Bark River Bravo2 shown with Rat RC4

    Fallkniven A2 side by side Bark River Bravo 2

  4. freedoom


    Jan 31, 2010
    Anything that starts with ESEE will work just fine for you. perhaps an rc-5?
  5. freq18hz


    Mar 4, 2010
    Listen to Kevin, he knows knives.

    I have a fallkniven F1. While I can say first hand, that with the F1, batoning takes a lot more work than using an axe or a hatchet, I can vouch for the fact that my fallkniven withstood batoning, only suffering some micro chipping as a result, which I hope will be refreshed by stropping, or sharpening.

  6. Dag-nabit


    Jan 6, 2009
    Thanks for the vote of confidence Freq18hz :thumbup:

    In reality I am only one of many here that has some experience with knives. You will receive many valid opinions, and suggestions based on experience.

    Keep an open mind to all the knowledge available here.

  7. HoosierQ


    Feb 9, 2010
    Axe...get an axe.
  8. freedoom


    Jan 31, 2010
  9. rc3mil

    rc3mil Banned BANNED

    Dec 20, 2009
  10. franchisekid


    Jan 26, 2010
    I think you can still get a pretty good deal on the Ontario Rtak II which is a great knife for baton work. It has a full flat grind, 1095 steel, plenty of blade to work with, and can take a beating. You may still be able to pick them up for under $100. I have personally thrashed on mine and it takes all I can dish out. I would also look at the ESEE line, but that will be more expensive, as well as the Becker line.
  11. Bax Axe

    Bax Axe

    May 6, 2007
    Ranger Knives RD9 would be another good choice.
  12. sodak

    sodak Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 26, 2004
    I've had the best luck with knives from the Busse line, Swamp Rat Knife Works, or Scrapyard. They all have excellent steels that will easily withstand batoning, I ordered them from most to least expensive.
  13. Ankerson

    Ankerson Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 2, 2002
    + 1 on that...

    However the Busses are out of the range the OP wanted to spend.

    But I will agree that there is nothing that I have found that works better than the FBM's.

    Example of what I mean.

    [youtube]<object width="640" height="385"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/f-q1Td9rTzE&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/f-q1Td9rTzE&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="640" height="385"></embed></object>[/youtube]
  14. wildmike


    Nov 17, 2007
    The Trailmaster you have will work great for batonning.

    If however you are set on replacing it look in the Busse/Swamprat/Scrapyard knives for sale section and find a Swamprat M9 or the M9 LE either will baton very well. The SR101 steel (52100) takes a fantastic edge. Tough as hell too.
  15. tenbore


    Apr 26, 2010
    Judging from some of the responses,I think a few have not fully understood,which may very well be my fault.

    I'm not a tenderfoot and the general use I describe is not theory.I'm quite experienced with an axe.

    In recent years I've developed COPD which causes breathing difficulty.Swinging an axe causes me problems.Sawing and splitting small saplings,etc with a knife does not cause me as much.

    The vast majority of cutting will be done with the saw.Although there are exceptions,I generally don't chop with a knife.I think of "batoning" as splitting rather than cutting across the grain.I don't think I clarifled that.For most knife use,I use a much smaller blade.The larger knife will be used the vast majority of the time for splitting sticks which will average from 3 to 5 inches in diameter (occasionally,just a bit more).Once the fire is going well and there's a good bed of coals,the bigger pieces burn quite well.

    I'm not new at this.My question is simply which knife in the general opinion is seen to be superior for splitting.My trailmaster has served but I desire to have another large and heavy bladed knife for a spare or possibly a replacement if one will be better.

    I thank everyone for their responses.I've considered the Ontario RD-9 but I'm certainly open to suggestions.

    Thanks again.
  16. Dag-nabit


    Jan 6, 2009
    Without pointing to specific knife brands or models (I already offered a suggestion above) for splitting you want a blade with a thick spine. But you probably already realize that.

    So any knife with:
    1. Suitable length to leave enough tip extened to get good contact with the baton. (length is really dependant on how large a slice you want to take off)
    2. Good enough steel (heat treat etc, etc) to withstand the abuse.
    3. A good thick spine to provide the "splitting wedge" effect.

    Just curious, have you tried batoning with your axe? That is another option worthy of consideration.

  17. philwar


    Mar 27, 2009
    Good list, let me add that a hollow ground knife is not very suitable for batoning (it will work but less well than a flat or convex ground blade).

    There's plenty of good (and even affordable) knives that meet these criteria. I will leave it to others to name brands. If there's a millie in there, ignore it. :D
  18. tenbore


    Apr 26, 2010
    To answer a question that was posed.......Yes,I've done a LOT of splitting with an axe.Using a knife as such is just using the knife like one would use a froe.

    I don't find that there is a tremendous amount of splitting necessary.To repeat what I've said,the larger pieces burn just fine once a good bed of coals are attained.Once again "cutting is done with a saw","splitting with the knife."

    I actually find that the knife works better.Then again,I'm not splitting huge pieces.Since the overall amount of splitting is not that great,I find the axe(with my situation)to generally be excess baggage.Sawing and splitting with a knife doesn't tax my lungs nearly as much.

    Perhaps I'll just stick with the Trail Master.Once the blade takes a proper bite,it's driven down with minimal effort.The wood in my hand doesn't need to be that big and the strikes don't need to be that hard.My lungs tell me that it's easier.
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2010
  19. theedge13


    Feb 11, 2008
    Hard to beat a bk2 for batoning. 1/4" thick 1095. If you dont like the grivory grips spend the money on the micarta. Half of your required spend (w/ the grips) and you have a hellacious knife. I traded one off for a BK7 (another superb knife!) but i missed my BK2....so....i got another. The only knife ive ever had that i bought again...ive had plenty!

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