Bushcraft Blades: Do they really matter?

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

  1. pitdog


    Apr 13, 2007
    Take a honkin great bowie and make some pot hangers for the camp fire, that knife is now a bushcraft knife !

    If a particular knife can be used to make items that can be used around camp etc then as far as I'm concerned it's a bushcraft knife.
  2. SouthernCross


    Jun 25, 2008
    IMO, there are knives that are designed to fit the relatively recent identification of a Bushcraft knife, with probably the best known example being the Woodlore and its' various clones/copies/inspired by reproductions.

    I've also seen various restrictions placed on knives seeking membership to this genre, including:
    Must have a wood handle.
    Must be carbon (ie non stainless steel). Some will even go so far as to suggest it must be O1.
    Must be a Scandi grind
    Must be have a blade that is 4 inches long.
    Must be a spear point.
    Must have....etc, etc, etc :D

    Then there is the much older idea that a bushcraft knife is one that is used in Bushcraft.

    As an example of the older description, take my favourite bushcraft knife (that is actually designed as a hunting knife) :eek:


    It only meets one criteria of the "modern" bushcraft knife in that it has a 4 inch blade.

    Yet it meets every one of my personal criteria for a bushcraft knife :thumbup:

    IMO, if a knife works in Bushcraft, then its' a bushcraft knife. :thumbup::thumbup:

    As others have said, genuine bushcraft is far more about the skills and far less about the equipment.

    Kind regards
  3. Ramm9


    Feb 14, 2007
    +1, that's pretty much it.

    Somebody a while ago, in a similar thread, wrote that there are bushcraft knives and Bushcraft Knives.

    The point was that there is now a recognized style of knife named "Bushcraft Knife" that resembles the Allan Wood design based on Mors Kochanski's description that I believe was based on the Mora. The style would be better labeled "Woodlore" but other makers of the style probably couldn't use the term so "marketing" adopted "Bushcraft".

    Then there is a bushcraft knife and that is certainly whatever the user finds is capable of doing what ever "bushcrafty", "woodscrafty" "wilderness" task is commonly at hand.

    The "must be's" probably come from the Kochanski description since he recommended carbon steel, but makes no comment about type of tip or handle material or grind. The rest of that stuff has to be marketing angles used by makers. Stainless didn't have a great reputation at first but that has sure changed

    Mick, that knife pictured sure looks like it even falls into the Bushcraft Knife range. Looks like a comfortable handle, short ricasso, no guard, close to palm length, good steel. Even with an inch or two more, a small guard and a little more ricasso it's still an outstanding bushcraft knife.
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2010
  4. RescueRiley


    Mar 22, 2006
    Southerncross... as always Mick... fantastic Post..

    To the author of the OP... seems like you asked a question and than give semi degrading ans sarcastic comments back when ever someone gives you an answer you don't agree with... cynicism is not conducive to a productive conversation...There are helpful folks here taking time out of there days to help answer a question you asked....may some courtesy is in order.. just my 2 cents.. personally use whatever knife you like and don;t get caught up in the hype of the term....if it works use it.
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2010
  5. Mannlicher


    Nov 19, 2008
    other than to realize self proclaimed prophesy, I am not sure why you asked the question. :eek:
  6. Big Mike

    Big Mike

    Aug 30, 2006

    That pretty much says it all. :thumbup: :D :thumbup:

    Big Mike
  7. Troop


    Oct 26, 2006
    Absolutely !!! :thumbup:
  8. hollowdweller


    Sep 22, 2003
    What he said:thumbup:

    Also will say I consider a "Bushcraft" knife a style of knife like a bowie or a nessmuk. Lots of difft styles of knives could be used for the tasks that fall under the activity of bushcraft.
  9. theonew


    May 16, 2006
    For carving wood this is probably my favorite knife at the moment :thumbup:



  10. Cpl Punishment

    Cpl Punishment

    Jan 28, 2006
    How the Hell did you get that from my post??

    Here's another way of saying exactly what I did:
    Simple, yes?

    Let's face it, the Mors Kopchanski view of a Bushcraft knife is as old as dirt. It's nothing other than a Finn puukko with a full tang (just like the popular Moras). But it's not the only design that works.

    Has nothing to do with handle material.

    These are bushcraft knives:

    so are these:

    this works too:

    Like smaller ones?

    This is a bushcraft knife:

    and this:

    Used this one to good effect in the woods:

    More traditional, but work great:

    What do all these have in common?
    They are pieces of sharp metal that I can use in bushcraft.
    Therefore, they are all bushcraft knives (note some aren't even knives).
  11. Md 25v

    Md 25v

    Jun 11, 2008
    And what model of mora do you have? I have most of the ones ragnar sells and have never seen one with a full tang. Hidden tang, push tang, and stick tang yes but no full tang moras AFAIK.
  12. fmajor007


    Apr 1, 2010
    This is AWESOME!!! Now you've gone 'n pissed in everyones Cheerio's - that's it - you're gonna get banned!!! Someone's gonna come to someone else's defense and you're going to get voted off the island. :rolleyes:

    You're right on!!! I can tell you from personal experience, if you're really pressed all the minutia of the knife simply won't matter. Think about 100 years or so ago before all these alloy's, precise designs and such. Guess what? People still managed to survive and did so with aplomb.

    Now, to the knife aficionado's. If you're discerning and refining your blade preferences to the level i've seen here - that's awesome. Many of these knives are works of design, engineering and artistic genius. I say rock on with these beautiful tools and enjoy your wilderness experiences to the fullest using them or just enjoy looking at them. It's your hobby - enjoy!!!
  13. Tye Possum

    Tye Possum

    Nov 16, 2009
    I think what jimh0220 is talking about is a full length stick tang, as in a stick tang that goes all the way through the handle instead of stopping halfway through. I have seen some full tang blades (blade only) made by Frost's though (one of the two companies that joined to become Mora of Sweden).

    As for the original question (as I understand it), I think a bushcraft knife can be any knife that you choose to use for "bushcraft". The word bushcraft itself is a subjective term so really a bushcraft knife could be anything. If chopping down small trees and battoning them into fire wood is your idea of bushcraft then the big chopper you use is your bushcraft knife, if carving utensils and making things out of wood is your idea of bushcraft then maybe your scandi ground Mora or similar knife is your bushcraft knife. Then again if you wanted to do that carving or battoning with a big tactical looking bowie knife then that can be a bushcraft knife too.

    It's how the knife is used that determines whether it's a bushcraft knife or not. I mean you could use a woodlore knife, the most quintessential bushcraft knife around, for self defence as well, so for the amount of time that you're using it for that, it becomes a "tactical" knife. Are real tactical knives better for the purpose of defending yourself? Probably as most I'd assume would be longer and have a finger guard, but you're still using it in that role. It's the same the other way around too, a woodlore will probably do bushcraft tasks better than a tactical knife but if you're using the tactical knife for bushcraft then it's a bushcraft knife.

    Or basically you could call your knife whatever the heck you want and use it for bushcraft, it doesn't matter as long as you like using that knife.
  14. Md 25v

    Md 25v

    Jun 11, 2008
    I thought that was what Jimh0220 meant as well but a stick tang is a stick tang, completely different design than a full tang. The tangs that only go half way through the plastic models are not stick tangs. They are push tangs. Neither of these compare with the load strength or ability to bear lateral stress with a full tang. His statement about his "full tang mora" was directly related to knife strength which was why I corrected him in the first place.
  15. jimh0220


    Apr 15, 2008
    It was a joke!! Some people tend to attack the author of a post when they question what makes their knife so different from the rest. Some are honestly answering the question, others are, in fact, attacking om as well, which is ok. The point of the thread is to try to get to the truth about 'bushcraft' knives that everyone (figuratively) claims to have to have to survive in the woods. From what I read, it appears that the truth has finally come around, which seems to be that it's not a knfe, but a style of using it.

    See Above.

    Yep. Thanks for clarifying. That's what they are. I thought they were considered full tang. My error.

    I love a good quality knife and hope that everyone buys and uses whatever knives they like.

    I am not concerned with the minutia of knives. I would be shunned by those who do for some of the knives I own, because they have inferior this or that. I'm just asking for a definitive description of what a 'bushcraft' knife really is, or, as I expected, and based on the responses, 'bushcraft', as far as a blade style, seems to be a marketing ploy. Bushcraft seems to be more of a style of doing things, many with a knife. The type of knife doesn't seem to matter, as much as how you use it. Buit when companies sell 'bushcraft' knives as such, one would think they are a specific type of knife. The same BS holds true for the vast majority of 'tactical' knives sold that could never be used in a true tactical situation. But man, it sells them knives, don't it.

    BTW, if you have piss in your cheerios, it wasn't me. Are you sure you remember all of last night?:D
  16. RescueRiley


    Mar 22, 2006
    Cool, Thanks for clearing your motives up at first I just though you where being unnecessarily arbitrary.. Seems that we have come to answer of sorts.. Good luck in your search.
  17. jimh0220


    Apr 15, 2008
  18. rinos

    rinos Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 17, 2008

    Mora Lapplander;)

    knives for bushcraft or bushcraft for knives :confused:
  19. Brutane


    Mar 15, 2010

    1. I use and love my Moras. I would be very happy if they were the only knives that I owned.

    2. I don't smoke, drink, do drugs, or drive fancy cars....I buy knives. (and other cool gadgets)
    I like to hold and USE quality tools. That's all there is to it. As far as function, I can do all with my Moras that I can do with my expensive knives but I just feel that part of the reward for doing an honest day's work and living in the great US of A is that I can buy and use a custom knife without feeling guilty about it.
  20. Md 25v

    Md 25v

    Jun 11, 2008
    Thanks Rinos, I had forgotten about that one.

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