edge to edge


Gold Member
Jan 13, 2001
Have any of you ever wondered how tough your khukuris really are? I have and this weekend I decided to test a couple of them. Although I have a small collection of HI blades I could never bring myself to intentionally damage my precious khukuris. So what did I use? I used a Genuine Military Issue kukri and a village model that I got free from Uncle a few months back because of reservations he had about it.

The test that I conducted has absolutely no value at all other than to satisfy my curiousity. The chances of it ever happening in a real life scenario are almost nil as I cannot imagine ever having to face a Gorkha or one of my fellow forumites in battle. I did something I know never to do, but have always wanted to. I conducted some edge to edge impacts.

In my effort to conduct my test in Stamp-ian manner I chose three areas to test on--the area near the tip, the sweet spot, and the area ahead of the cho. I made sure that I was hitting the blades together at similar areas (i.e. sweet spot to sweet spot). The results surprised me. I hit the blades together seven times and at the end of the test it was the Military Issue knife that came out on top. While the village knife had seven notches indicating where it contacted the Military Issue, the Military Issue had only two slight dings, both in the area ahead of the cho. The Military Issue had no discernable damage in the sweet spot or the area near the tip. By contrast the village knife clearly sustained some damage, impacting as much as 3/16". The notches did not look like it metal was pushed to one side, but rather like it was cleaved. I tried to repair the damage with the chakma, but it was to no avail. If I ever decide to fix the knife it will probably entail considerable material being removed.

What did this tell me? First that Uncle Bill knows what he's talking about. He doubted this blade and he doubted it for good reason. Two, just as having a blade that is too hard is bad as it could chip out, a blade that is too soft is equally bad as it will impact excessively when it encounters hard materials.

There was a positive that I noted in the village blade. After the test I sharpened it and it is by far the easiest to sharpen out of all my khukuris. Compared to my HIs which fight me the whole way during the sharpening process, the village knife readily took an edge. Problem is that she doesn't keep it very long though. :D
I salute your dedication to researching this idea! I've always wanted to do something similar, but could never bring myself to damage my nicer knives. Interesting results. One question - when you say "genuine military issue" are you referring to an Indian made Khuhuri?

Edge to edge is horrible, I don't think many --if any-- blades will survive going edge to edge with something of equal or greater hardness.
I think that they held up as well as you could have hoped.
Remember, stage combat blades are really really thick and rebated, but they still need to get replaced after a while. And, the medieval manuals tend to lean towards flat parries, rather than blade blocks, unlike in the movies.

I assume you knew all this, but others might not. I do not mean to come off as an a****** but, <i>words with no me good</i> :)

You're right. I already know that edge to edge is a no-no, but I had to try anyway. I had reservations right off the bat about the Genuine Military Issue as it is very poorly made, but I hadn't totally made up my mind about the village knife. I knew that it was very soft as it dulled quickly and even impacted from some wood chopping that I had done previously. When I tried to steel it my chakma did not sing as it usually does but sort of just manhadled the steel. I knew it wouldn't be that great a worker, so I thought about giving it this last assignment. I didn't expect the results as I would depend on the village knife first before the Military Issue, but I was mistaken. Despite being only 1/4" thick the Military knife was less damaged the 3/8" village model. Who would've guessed?

Outdoors, your right that the Military Issue is not Nepalese made. Most of us probably bought this knife before we found HI. I seriously doubt if its authenticity as no self respecting Gorkha would carry this blade. It did give me another knife to bang the village model against though.

What do I do with the village model now though? I know! I've always wanted to learn how to throw knives and tomahawks. This baby should fit the bill nicely! It's nice and soft so I can throw it without worrying about it breaking...;)

Have you noticed impaction or other edge damage when you use the village khukuri on hardwoods. Also, does the edge form a burr rather quickly when you chop wood with the village khukuri?

I read a couple places on the net that you've got to be careful throwing a khukuri. If you don't get the spin just right, and it hits with the handle coming up, back of the blade first, WATCH OUT!, cause the curve of the blade will send it winging right back at you. YIPES! :eek:
Thanks for this good info!! I always wondered what might happen when this was done!!;)
Even after all this time I'm still surprised at all the stuff that the forumites know. Will was dead on. I didn't chop on any hard woods, but there is this log in the backyard that I chop on to test my blades. I don't know what the species is, but it seems to be of moderate hardness, except against my khukuris. I noticed that chopping on this log did not dull my villager per se, but it did bring up a burr as Will had hypothesized. In hindsight that should have been enough to tell me that the edge was too soft. Ah well, it's a learning experience. Good thing I didn't use too much force.
Will is one of our sharpening experts and very good at predicting the way different Rc blades will act.