Bushcraft Blades: Do they really matter?

Discussion in 'Wilderness & Survival Skills' started by jimh0220, Jun 28, 2010.

  1. jimh0220


    Apr 15, 2008
    So I see plenty of posts (daily, it seems) about Bushcraft knives: what is the best to buy, look what I did with mine, which is best for.....

    So here's the question: What is better about a 'bushcraft' knife, and other quality knives of similar sizes. I can do all that I have read so far about bushcraft knives with a $25 Bucklite Max med size or $10 MORA 1 fixed blades. Before I get attacked by those who scream 'custom vs production', I will never compare the workmanship differences, merely the capabilities. Custom knives that do not fall into the 'bushcraft' genre are also capable of the same, but with much more artistic style.

    So my point: isn't owning a bushcraft knife merely a name to say you use it in the woods, much as a tactical blade suggests that one uses the blade for real tactical purposes?

    Let the conversation (and, I'm sure, the inevitable beatings, which I expect to be done with clubs hand cut and fashioned only by bushcraft knives:D) begin.
    LG&M likes this.
  2. oguruma


    Jan 3, 2010
    If you are asking if most cheap blades can do everything an expensive blade can do, then the answer is yes.

    You get a lot of converstion about what makes the best blade because you are on a forum dedicated to knife enthusiasts...
  3. Col. Cornelius

    Col. Cornelius

    May 20, 2009
    Blade shape is important - different shapes work better for different tasks.
    Edge geometry is important - more accute edges cut wood easier that a blunt edge.
    Handle shapie is important - a more comfortable handle results in more comfort during longer using time.

    I see bushcraft blades as specialized blades that excels at certain tasks, just like a skinning knife with a broad sweeping edge works best for skinning.

    It doesn't mean that's the only design that works for the task, its just specialized for the task.
  4. Mack

    Mack Expert Ultracrepidarian Platinum Member

    Aug 19, 2007
    I often thought a knife was a knife. I used my JKs and others for whatever I needed to cut. Then I was given a Mora Craftline Allround and wood cutting became much easier. The grind is absolutely perfect for cutting wood. I still carry my JKs everywhere I go and they do most of my cutting chores but if I'm working with wood I use the Mora.
    A.L. likes this.
  5. Frostyfingers


    Aug 27, 2008
    +1. This is a really good way to look at it. I appreciate the fact that different blade shapes are better for different uses, but can knives designed for skinning animals be used with wood? Absolutely. Could a Mora skin out a whitetail? Absolutely. But each of these knives is more effective at the tasks for which is was designed.
  6. RescueRiley


    Mar 22, 2006
    I think at this point my opinions are no secret... a knife is jut that...the skill of the practicioner is the x factor... I love moras I use them more than any other knife for almost anything outdoors... Carving food prep game tasks processing fire wood you name it...
    I prefer the edge geometry of the scandi grind.. But I have done all of the aforementioned tasks with flat hollow and convex ground knives as well...
    Could you do it all with a few 10 dollar knives absolutely....
    But a few time s a year I still lay down the coin for a nice piece.. for the days when I want to feel fancy, or hold something with a little more heft than a mora.
    LG&M likes this.
  7. jimh0220


    Apr 15, 2008
    I guess I need to start over. What makes a bushcraft a bustcraft. I've seen he pics, and while most are beautiful knives, I don't see what significant difference the possess that hanges what they do.

    FYI, I get that there is a difference between a $10 knife, and a custom (stated that in the original post):confused:, that there are specialized knives for specialized tasks (duh):eek:, and that people here (including me, which is why a post here too, as well as pay for my membership) like to discuss knives, hence the name BLADEforums:eek:. In fact, I AM discussing knives here.

    Now that I've cleared all that up.....
  8. LMT66

    LMT66 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 18, 2008
    A scandi is easily maintained in the field and shaves wood very efficiently. A woods knife can be used comfortably in many different grips.
    Handle material, handle shape, palm swell, blade thickness, choiled or not, spine line and point type, tip strength all play into things.

    Use a skinner with a gut hook to drill into wood and you'll probably snap the tip in a heartbeat.

    Not much you can't do with a $10 Mora but a Buck 110 might hinder certain tasks.

    Use the right tool for the job.
  9. dberry


    Oct 16, 2007
    There are alot on here that use tactical type knives for bushcraft. IMO a bushcraft knife is one that you can use in the field. For me it doesnt have to be marketed as a bushcraft knife for me to use it in the woods.
  10. RescueRiley


    Mar 22, 2006
    THere is no difference.. as I see it, it has primarily to do with the 2 issues..
    1) allota folks just want to have nice things
    2) some folks feel that if the chips where down you the workmanship of a cheaper knife might fail

    beyond that it;s just splitting hairs.
    WILLIAM.M likes this.
  11. k_estela

    k_estela Co-Moderator, Wilderness and Survival Skills Forum Moderator

    Feb 23, 2001
    Bushcraft should be more of a skill set than a marketing label. Forgot who said it but "$200 knife and $2 worth of know how."

    You can impress me with a $10 Mora and ability and make me laugh with a high dollar custom and incompetence.
    Bmurray and El Bandit0 like this.
  12. TheGame


    Sep 24, 2008
    A knife is a knife. In my opinion, whatever you want the knife to do should be what you base what kind of knife you call it. Whether it be a bushcraft knife or a tactical knife. A knife is still just that, a knife. Many people will use a knife designed to be a 'tactical' knife and use it in the woods. Does that make it a bushcraft knife?
  13. GhostWolf


    Feb 2, 2004
    Now that's funny. True but funny.
    clayton c likes this.
  14. Scottman


    Jun 24, 2007
    Just a thought: Bushcraft the book. The recommended blade in that book.
  15. PayetteRucker


    Aug 4, 2009
    The common line of thought in a bushcrafting knife seems to be a very ergonomic light blade for extensive use. Generally we see a good balance of tip and belly, often with the tip centered along the axis of the handle. Thin angled grinds, thinner blades, more finesse and less brawn.
  16. zhangmaster12


    Sep 14, 2007
    Well, most of us here are knife aficionados. So when we see a knife we really fancy, we enjoy using it more, and thus enjoy the outdoors more.

    The only advantage a nice custom scandi over say a mora, is steel and strength of a full tang. Other than that, we really just like the customs more.
  17. Cpl Punishment

    Cpl Punishment

    Jan 28, 2006
    IMO what makes a Bushcraft knife, a Bushcraft knife, is that all the little design features come together to optimize it for use in the woods, primarily crafting things from wood or other plants.
  18. jimh0220


    Apr 15, 2008
    That if you want a bushcraft knife, buy only the blade in a book. Sad.

    Plus, search bushraft here, and wait and see the variety of designs. Even more fun, search on google images. HOLY SHIZZZZZ!
  19. jimh0220


    Apr 15, 2008
    So then Bushcraft is a nice knife with wood handles? Then my Canadian belt knife is now a Bushcraft? Cool.
  20. jimh0220


    Apr 15, 2008
    Isn't a Mora a Scandi with a full tang? Mine is, and it's strong too. Custom looks, no. Again, $10, and I could do as much with it.

    Again, my Bucklight Max and Mora fit that bill. So they are Bushcraft.

    All the replies so far seem to point to the fact that Bushcraft is merely a trendy title to sell knies to those looking for a knife for using in the outdoors.

    I looked at the description in the Spyderco catalog for their new Bushcraft knife. It is a basic set of specs that describes nearly all of my 3-5 in fixed blade knives. (BTW, the knife is a beautiful piece, and I would love to own one, money permitting, but dfferent from every other knife, not so much)

    Now THIS makes sense! Thanks for being honest about this.

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