Got my first khukri

Nov 19, 2006
I purchased a 15" Sirupati from HI - my first khukri. I had seen khukris in knife shops that were very heavy, which was a major reason I chose the Sirupati - I wanted something light and quick. It's amazing just how pretty the blade is. I used some fine steel wool on the horn handle to rough it up a little and hopefully to secure my grip. I have large hands, so sometimes I wonder about the handle size, but not enough where it's an issue. I would love to take it out in the woods and test it, but the knife is just so pretty - unscratched and not oxidized yet. I find myself looking at it as a huge knife at times, and a small knife (in khukri terms) others. I have a few questions that I'm hoping some of you will help me with.

1. Is the piece on the butt cap and between the handle and the blade brass? Is there maintenance required with those parts?
2. Has anyone done anything really stupid with their khukri like accidentially dropped it on a pet or their foot?
3. Are there things I should do to avoid damaging my khukri?
4. I once heard someone say they could break a padlock with their khukri. I would guess they were referring to a heavier, larger khukri then mine?
5. There are legendary stories about the Gurkas engaged in warfare using khukris to lop off oponents legs in a sinlge swipe and gutting oponents horses in one cut. I also heard it said that if you drop a khukri from a few feet onto your leg - it will cut halfway through. Are any of these tales true, and were they done with a khukri similiar to my 15" Sirupati?
Congrats on your first kukri, I have a feeling it won't be your last.

1) Most of the time they are brass, sometimes white metal (looks very similar to silver). Both don't require maintenance, but if you want to keep them shinny then some metal polish every few months will keep that shine.

2) Not yet

3)Try to avoid hitting other pieces of metal. I know I have hit a few nails before while chopping wood and while they didn't do any damage to the kukri, I can't say that it would really be good for it.

4) I guess you could break a pad lock with a kukri (depending on the lock and kukri size) but I prefer to just use the key. :)

5) I have no doubt in my mind that a kukri is fully capable of inflecting terrible damage to flesh and bones of living animals. Dropping a kukri from a few feet onto your leg is a bad idea..I don't think it will go 1/2 way though (depending on the size of the kukri of course) but it certainly will hurt you none the less.
1. yes - waxing after brass polish will keep it shiney if desired. (some are steel, if it's yellow, it's brass)
2. yes, there is a thread here on people with holes.
3. yes. don't hit anything harder than the khukri, metal nails in wood. flesh & most woods are OK, some woods if hit incorrectly can chip a hardened steel edge which will then require resharpening. do not do your q. no. 4.
4. might work, but might damage the edge. in an emergency, go for it -might work. depends on padlock.
5. gurkhas took heads frequently in ww2, ritual sacrifices in nepal require decapitating the bullock or goat, sheep with one blow, otherwise it's bad luck.
old tale about requiring the khukri to drink blood every time it's unsheathed is not true, it was started by a ghurkah who got tired of everyone wanting to see his knife. one of my favourite stories is about a ghurkha who went hand-to-hand with a japanese officer with a samurai sword, the ghurkha lost a few fingers, the jap lost his head.

the khukri is made of steel, with a hardened steel sweet spot along the belly of the blade where you normally contact the target. the tip and area near the grip are likely not hardened and can chip, bend or break easier there. the hardened area can chip if you hit something really hard, and in some cases can break off a large chunk. the knives are all hand made, and are subject to mistooks in hardening so it is possible to get a bad edge on occasion, tho HI stands by their guarantee which is the best. treat it like a tool, use it, but it's not unbreakable. i'm sure the others here will offer more tips. HI's website has a lot of info on useage, sharpening, and what not to do's at this linky now you might feel your blood starting to burn and your eyes endlessly searching the have HI and there is no cure
4. My take on the padlock story was that it was done with a chiruwa ang khola and it was pried off, not chopped. And it wasn't the padlock but the whole latch assembly.

some of the blades are made from magic space metal and quench in the tears of faeries. those will cut through rocks and magically stay rust free for years in the ocean. the mere reflection of light off of one will kill vampires instantly and blind/cripple all other undead immediately to make them easier to dispatch. superman himself is afraid of these, but he won't admit it. they do glow green. mmm.