Steps to Buying the Right Knife
1. How will you use it?
2. What features are important to you?
- Everyday: Are you opening boxes or cutting twine?
- Outdoor (Backpacking/Climbing/Hiking/Camping): Does your activity involve using rope?
- Hunting/Fishing: Are you field dressing game or cleaning/filleting fish?
- Tactical/Survival: Do you need a heavy-duty knife that won't fail?
- Limited Edition/Custom: Are you a collector?
3. What is it made of and why?
- Fixed-blade: Always ready for use and dependable.
- Folding knife: Compact, safer to carry; improved dependability with locking blade.
- One-handed opening: Has a thumb stud, blade hole or other feature to facilitate one-hand use. Some models are one-hand opening and one-hand closing as well.
- Gutting/skinning blade: For field dressing game.
- Thick Blade: For heavy-duty tasks.
- Light weight: Use of composite or other materials to minimize weight.
- Saw edge: For cutting wood or bone.
- Sharpness: Stays sharp and is easy to sharpen.
A good blade combines good edge retention, ease of re-sharpening and rust resistance.
- S30V is the best blade steel available. It is a high vanadium stainless steel with even higher edge retention.
- 154CM and BG-42 are two custom steels with much higher carbon content, giving them higher hardness ratings and dramatically higher edge retention.
- 420HC is a stainless steel that provides excellent rust resistance, is easy to re-sharpen and has good edge retention.
A good handle should feel solid and well constructed when you hold it. We suggest you consider a handle style and material that meets your needs and suits your preference.
Information courtesy of Buck Knives
- An ergonomic design provides comfort.
- A rubber or textured handle provides a sure grip in wet conditions.
- A wooden handle adds beauty to the knife.
- Plastic/composite handles are durable under extreme conditions.