Mora 2000 survival knife: first impressions

Jun 23, 1999
A BF member query about Swedish knives prompted me to have a look at one of the Ragweedforge pages where I stumbled upon the Mora 2000 Survival Knife. An unusual looking knife to say the least with a grind change 2/3 of the way down the blade clearly visible on the picture. I've been favorably impressed with Nordic cutlery in the past, particularly the cost/performance ratio one often (though not always) finds in these knives, so for $26 I figured I had nothing to loose.

The knife arrived in the mail only a few days after I placed the order. The blade is stainless, 5" long, 1" wide and 1/16" thick of stainless steel. The blade has no belly until about 3/4" behind the tip where it curves quickly to meet the slightly dropped spine. The handle is plastic and wraps completely around the tang. At either end of the handle is a hard plastic cap, one at the butt, the other serving as a bolster/guard. Each is oval in shape and offset towards the edge side of the knife. In between the two hard caps, the handle has a swell in the middle that facilitates grip. Its made from a plastic that gives a little (just a very little) when squeezed. The material, and the texture imprinted into it gives a good grip dry, wet, and even when oily. The sheath supplied with the knife is made from plastic, possibly the same material as is used in the butt cap and bolster. Its adequate but cheap (what do you expect for $26), and I might have something custom done in kydex for the blade just because I like is so much...

Why do I like it? Heck I've got survivial knives from Busse, and Livesay, and a hunting knife from Dozier, those three being my only higher-end fixed blades, but this little knife is a really nice. For one thing its ultra light!. What a pleasure it would be to carry this on a backpacking adventure instead of the other much heavier blades. Of course it doesn't chop worth a damn, its light weight being its weakness in this regard. A knife like this is really made for cutting, and in a backpacking context, I usually bring a light saw anyway. Secondly, it cuts magnificently because it is so thin, thinner than anything else I have besides my Aki machete! Finally, it is inexpensive, easy to replace. I'm not going to be afraid of abusing it, though to be sure it will probably take less abuse than the Livesay or Busse.

So what have I done with it? So far, I built a fire, using the knife to shave fuzz sticks and split some small logs up to about 1.5" in diameter by driving the knife through them with another piece of wood. I also used the very end of the blade to scrape a ferrocium rod to start the fire, but before I did that I used the knife to behead, gut and fillet a small salmon and a couple of trout along with a variety of vegetables.

The knife performed admirably. Its thinness is a real plus when it comes to preparing fish. I was especially interested in how the handle would feel when covered with fish oil. It did very well, as well or better than smooth micarta. The handle remained comfortable throughout

All in all, I think this is a pretty good knife, a lot of bang for the buck. It lacks a lanyard hole, and I can't tell if the tang goes all the way through the handle, though the knife's balance point is far enough back into the handle to suggest that it goes at least most of the way through (of course this depends on the density of the plastic). The plastic butt cap doesn't feel like it would withstand any serious pounding. The bolster cap's guard is not deep enough to stop the hand from sliding up onto the blade if the knife got loose on a thrust.

Bottom line, not the most rugged survival knife on the planet, but maybe the best under $30! Best of all, its fun to use.

[This message has been edited by matthew rapaport (edited 02-13-2001).]

[This message has been edited by matthew rapaport (edited 02-13-2001).]
Ironic, as I read this, my Mora 2000 was on top my computer monitor.

I really, really like this knife.

It is the first knife I reach for when I cook, it is a real joy to use.

And, if my hunch is correct, Ray Mears issues it as his school blade.

Thank you,
Marion David Poff aka Eye

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I know Ragnar. He is an honest man. I bought a Thane`s dress knife, good quality, silver mounted, fancy sheath from him cheaper than they wanted in Norge.
I also bought a crude knife from him. Something that a fisherman or woods man without money would use.

Norski laminated blades have been around forever. Harry Morseth made me a couple in the `50`s. I bet they are worth a lot now.
They are fancy, with reindeer handles but the Norsk using knife is simple.
Aside from the hard steel sandwiched between soft steel, the handles are a piece of Birch with the through tang just pounded to one side. They didn`t even bother to round the blank. Not unlike a Free China,(not red china). vegetable cleaver that has given me good service for $2.50 in a gook store.
Mora is Swede, but all of the knives are scandanavian design. The Norsk like them a bit longer than the Danes, Finns and Swedes.
These knives do not dull as fast as normal because the soft steel wears faster than the really hard core. I wonder what the RC is on the core;64,68? The sides seem about 54.
They have Moose there. I wonder how they quarter them with a 4" or 5" blade?
Matthew, did you have any problems with edge damage? I have used a couple of similar blades and while yes they do cut very well, because the only grind is the edge grind and it needs to be fairly thin, they tend to impact and distort under forces that blades with primary and edge grinds can easily handle.

It would be interesting to see how this blade compares to say the Deerhunter from A. G. Russel as they both are nice and thin while the Mora has a thinner edge but the Deerhunter is thinner behind the edge due to the primary full flat grind.

I'm interested in the edge durability also. Found a one I really liked on ragnar's page, but am curios about the grind??

Age, and treachery , will always win out over youth and skill!
They probably use saws to quarter those moose. There is some sort of implicit assumption that carries along with these sorts of "ultra light" survival knives. One of the characteristics commonly cited as necessary in a survival knife is chopping ability. So if the knife can't chop, I presume the bearer has something else with him/her to perform this task.
I had a Mora 2000 and really liked it. Hard to beat for the price. I used it mostly for yard work and it worked great. Edge retention was fair, but very easy to resharpen. Mine broke after I tried to use it to pry out some dry rot on my deck. I will probably replace it again someday.
At last someone else has found this knife. I first got one some three years ago - from Ragweed Forge. This is a great utility knife! It cuts like crazy and is easy to resharpen. I've used it to do all kinds of jobs from food prep to cutting large sections of carpet. I did a mini-review in the old rec.knives entitles "Ode to an inexpensive knife." As others have said it's not perhaps the ultimate combat knife but it is a a best buy in the utility class.
Cliff... Sorry I missed your question last time I read through these posts. I've not noticed any edge damage with the little bit of pounding I've done to it, but I'll look again after I do a more. I only split a half dozen sticks and they were pretty small (less than 1.5" diameter) and pine, which is not a very hard wood. Certainly no edge damage after all the food prep and fuzz shaving, and even the part of the edge (the base near the handle) I used to strike a spark with a ferrocium rod showed no chipping or folding, but again, I only had to strike the rod twice to ignite the trioxane block I used to start everything.

At the moment I'm on the East coast on business. I'll be back on Sunday with a day off monday and I'll play harder with the knife and report back.

Maybe I'm missing it, but I cant find this knife listed on the ragweedforge page. Could someone tell me where to look?


Matt, go to the "Swedish knife" section, you can't miss it there about 2/3 of the way down the page.

Cliff... I'm back, and its pouring in N. CA today, but that didn't stop me from doing a little more testing. I took the Mora 2000 out and pounded it through some more wood. I found I couldn't quite get it through a knot where a branch met a trunk, and pounding on it there for a while did noticably dull the blade. I didn't try to pound it so hard it would break. I was pounding on the spine with a fairly heavy (about 3" in diameter) log. Still it managed to easily produce enough kindling for several fires from relatively small logs up to 2" in diameter.

Using the base of the knife to strike sparks on a ferrocium rod definately rolled the blade a bit after only a few strokes. That gave me an idea for speeding up the testing process. I grabbed one of my magnesium fire starter blocks and used the base of the blade (about 1.5" or so) to shave Mg until I had enough to reliably start a fire. At that point, the bottom several inches of the blade were noticably rolled, but nothing was chipped out, and the rolled edge struck a spark (because it was very rough I'm sure) even better than it did when it was sharp!

For comparison purposes, I tried this with several other knives and will report on it in a separate thread.

Finally, as a tip test, and just to make sure I could do it, I did some carving into the top of a tree stump by pounding on the plastic pommel with another log while driving the tip into the stump at a low angle, then prying up the thin slice produced. Mind you I did not go deep or far into the wood each time I pried the knife up, but enough to show that the tip could take light prying, and the pommel light pounding. I did this for about 10 mins. The front inch of the knife was noticably dulled by the process, but still fairly sharp.

I cleaned the knife, then sliced up some thick, and very dried fruit on a wooden cutting board, a tedious process of push cutting straight into the wood that lasted about 20 mins. The middle few inches of the knife (that hadn't been shaving Mg or used to carve) were still not really dull (a steel brought the knife almost back to its factory edge which was pretty good) so I went back outside and cut up some tall grasses and other weeds growing around a small pond.

That dulled it enough for a good sharpening. It didn't take to many strokes, even by hand on a diamond rod, to bring the edge back to shaving sharp. I'm still impressed.

[This message has been edited by matthew rapaport (edited 02-19-2001).]