Ultimate Survival Knife

Discussion in 'Blades' started by Clyde, Aug 4, 2005.

  1. Clyde

    Clyde Jet Set Tourer Administrator Founding Member

    I have been looking for the ultimate all around survival knife. First: I am looking for the best knife you would buy, no matter what the price. Second: I am looking for an average priced back-up survival knife. Your thoughts and suggestions are appreciated:
  2. TLynn

    TLynn Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I realize I'm not up on all the fancy new survival type knives but for me it would be my basic Ka-Bar or Gerber military style knife. The Gerber isn't the newer one it's an older model. Ka-Bar is your old standby that you always see, they've changed the materials in it but it's been around for years and years.

    I like both of them and they work.

    Somewhere I think I still have a Buck knife as well - if I could just remember where I stashed it (believe me when I say my house is full of knives (okay my bedroom, car, pickup and walk in closet). The Buck knife is another knife that I like for an all around survival type knife. Again it's not one of these fancy new style blades but an older one that's been around for years.

    I'll leave it up to the more informed people to suggest the up to date stuff. I'm just old fashioned.
  3. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

  4. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    In the not-so-distant past I would've opted for a true high quality knife like a Loveless. But, and I know how this is gonna sound, now I'd go with a knife that I made.

    What's important to me is that the knife will not fail, and that it will not break. Mine will hold their edge and bend 90 degrees without breaking, and that's all you can ask really.

    It'd be nice to have a 3" or 4" and then a bigger chopper, but I'd go with a 4" to 5" as my one knife. Well, maybe a little bigger. :shock:
  5. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    So Valk...

    Will you be taking any custom orders for these ValkknivesĀ®?

    I know I'd like the best. I take it you saw I gave you a Knife making forum. As a non knife maker, I didn't know if there was a term you liked better. What's the best name for that skill?
  6. ghostrider

    ghostrider Resident Poltergeist Founding Member

    I'm sure I'm stirring the pot, but I have a Cold Steel Trailmaster that has seen a lot of use in the last 15 years. It is presently scary sharp, with a convex edge, thanks to a Harbor Freight 1 X 30 belt sander. It's 52100 with a good heat treat, and has even cut deer leg bones with a wood billet, when I didn't have anything else. Even skinned a deer, when I lost my pocketknife. A big knife can do anything a small knife will, but not vice-versa. I also have a Blackjack copy of a Randall #1, also 52100, with a stag handle.

    Disclaimer Cold Steel knives are made by various vendors, so your results may vary.
  7. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    As far as orders, probably not. I took 5 on WR and it was a nightmare trying to get them done and I'm only now getting them out. What I'd like to do is just keep makin' 'em for now and then sell 'em. I need to do alot of experimenting to see what works and come up with new models and I can't do that filling orders.

    When I do make knives I'll give preference to those who've shown interest, and am starting a email group of customer and people interested and I will offer them the knives. I have too many friends here and I have to offer them knives before others I don't know. Except TLynn - she's cut off! Not really. :lol:

    Love the knifemaking forum - I'm going to post a pictorial thread about how my knives are made. I've found that most have no idea what goes into a knife!
  8. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    I'd expect nothing less. I think I recall you to have agitator and potstirrer in your avatar.... We need Quig to get you that potstirrer smile here...
  9. TLynn

    TLynn Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member


    Seriously though I did snatch up two of his knives already so I shouldn't be greedy.

    Oh wait I am greedy when it comes to knives. Nevermind... I totally understand Valkman's desire not to make them for people just yet - it's not fun when you've got orders to put out. Much more interesting to make them and then put them on the market if you think they might sell. I'm betting you'll get your chance melbo because he's seriously having fun making them - even if he does get frustrated doing things over and over again. It's all part of the process of learning.
  10. Clyde

    Clyde Jet Set Tourer Administrator Founding Member

    Phishi's Survival Knife List

    Phishi sent this to me shortly after knob creek. I thought I would share it with y'al:

    This is a list of makers that I feel would be good choices.

    Just about the only one piece, survival style knife that I would recommend. My personal favorites include the Nkonka, the Shadow family, and the Skinner. My father has a few, and I believe them to be well made. The Green Beret and Neil Roberts Warrior are good possibilities also.

    Both Eric and I like his designs. Favorites include, the Shiva, SERE Operator (Both fixed blades), SERE 2000, and the Nomad (Both folders). The Operator and the Nomad are what I currently carry, or have with me to go into the woods.

    Bark River makes blades in MI. They have what I believe to be some promising designs, but I have never held one. Favorites would be the Northstar, the Mini Canadian, and the Woodland. These are on my short list, and I have considered the Mini for my wife, although the Northstar would probably be a better choice. Maybe I'll just get both .

    These are Canadian, one of the models is used for their military. I believe this to be a great, small knife for food prep. Currently their Trout & Bird is in a drawer in my kitchen. It is great for cutting chicken, although I believe their Trout & Bird Flat Grind would be better for things like slicing carrots thin. It is the newer style for this knife (Thats why I don't own one), and it could be superior for doing both tasks.
    Another good choice for an individual with small paws.

    The standard against all others are judged. They have some great designs, but they come at a high price and a long wait. You can find them on line, sometimes, but it may not be what you want exactly. I would not hesitate to carry one of these, I just can't afford to. Many companies make similar designs (Cold Steele, Black Jack, there are probably more) which are probably just as good and less money. Choice is up to you.

    These have a good rep, I just don't care for the price. For what I percieve you getting, there seems to be better out there. Just my opinion.

    You saw them at the Machinegun shoot. Possibly one of the best for you do to your fear of blade failure. Personaly, I think that any knife will fail eventually, but I believe it will likely happen long after you begin to abuse it. That being said, certain designs do lend to faster breakage. The clipped point of a Bowie style comes to mind as a point of weakness. When it goes, just file it to a new shape and keep on going.

    There are other names that come to mind in more of a production stand point. SOG, Cold Steele, Gerber, Columbia River Knife and Tool, Blackjack, Becker Knife and Tool, and Kabar all would be good, relatively inexpensive choices that would fill your needs. The advantage is that if you do break one, the cost of replacement is not to great.
  11. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    That's a good list of production makers - I'd probably pick Strider if those were my choices. I have a MTL-SS and do think you could risk everything with Striders because that's exactly the purpose they're made for.
  12. phishi

    phishi Psy-Ops Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    What is it that you want this knife to do? If you want a knife more suited for combat, or related tasks, I would agree with Valkman's choice. I'm not sure that a Strider is the best all around knife however. They are darn tough, and have a heck of a rep, I just feel that there might be a better blade out there for you.

    For the record, if someone wants to give me a Strider in a vain attempt to persuade my opinion, I won't turn the knife down. :rolleyes:

  13. Cousin Jack

    Cousin Jack Knifemaker Founding Member

  14. TLynn

    TLynn Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member


    Some of us have way too much money to spend on cool toys!

    Seriously my friend good to see you and way cool STRIDER you got yourself there.
  15. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Yep, that'd be a good one! :p
  16. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    In order to have my ideal knife for SHTF or just general hunting and such, I need to get my forge set up and start pounding metal again. I would want a good damascus knife with about a 10" blade, 1 1/2" deep and about 3/16 to 14" thick at least with a slight hollow grind so it would do better at makeing a nice deep slice, of say titanium and spring steel folded a couple dozen times at least and then a good handle probably of bone or antler with grip ridges burned in and would have to be sure it was balanced well. So far am still trying to get the forge together since dont know anyone around here that has one I can use. Oh, and as far as comeing up with the titanium...while it seems a bit morbid I would probably go to the crematorium and see about buying some from them. Most of the rods and such put in bones from what I understand is titanium and after cremation the metal is generaly tossed in a barrel for recycleing.
    I figure you cant beat custom, hand forged damascuss.
  17. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I want one, I want one!!!!
  18. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    When I can get the forge together I plan to start doing some as a side line. What do you think something like that would bring? Traditional coal forged (adds a bit of carbon) and all hand made damascuss.
  19. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I'll say this much, Im not sure what they would cost but I dont think I would consider selling one like that that I had made for under $350-$400. Not sure how weel those would sell given the price tag, may have to stick to simple ones for sale. lol
  20. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Yea, with damascus they wouldn't be cheap. Even the little knife that I make now (my avatar) will more than double in price when I use expensive stainless Damascus I bought. Sheffield's Supp;y has "cheap" damascus that's $125 for a 4"x20" piece. I got one in 3/16" and now I want one in 1/8".
survivalmonkey SSL seal        survivalmonkey.com warrant canary