Best Survival Knife 2017 | Buyer’s Guide

If you are facing a hard time to find the Best Survival Knife for your adventurous trip, you have just landed on the best place we will suggest some of the best survival knives from which you can choose the one which suits you best. We have researched a lot on the knives we have included in the list and put our experience here. So, let’s get started for you:-

One the best things which make survival knives attractive is their outstanding design and look. Once you start exploring these knives, you will easily get confused into which one to buy and which not. Of course, finding the Best Survival Knife is a tough job. An outdoorsman will prefer choosing a knife which is not overloaded with useless gimmicks. Survival knives have been popularized by these Hollywood movies.

Durability is the most important things while buying a Best Survival Knife. And, if a top notch survival knife is from any brand company, nothing can be more good than this. We have included some big brands on the list keeping one thing in mind, i.e. if you get a high-quality knife, money goes not matter there. To make offering impressive, the list is compiled with survival knives from other companies like Brite Strike too. But one thing we promise is that the list is compiled for all their types, beginner, moderate and an experienced guy.

Best Survival Knife 2017 | Comprehensive List:-

We have included several knives that have the incredible knife, but shabby and less than the great sheath. As said above, it is a balancing act to provide the Best Survival Knife to every group. So, without wasting further time, let’s get started and find the Best Survival Knife for you:-

Knife ModelBlade TypeBlade LengthTotal LengthKnife MaterialWarrantyPrice
ESEE 6P-BFixed6.50"11.75"Handle: Grey Micarta Scale, Sheath: Black Molded PolymerManufacturers Check Price
SOGFixed6-inch AUS-8 steel blade11.25"AUS8 Stainless SteelRepair or Replace Defective Items Check Price
KA-BAR Full Size US Marine CorpsFixed7" Straight Edge BladeNot specified1095 Cro-van steelManufacturers, Knife Made in USA, Leather Sheath made in Mexico Check Price
BlizeTec TitaniumFoldingNot specified8.62 inches in length, closed length 4.88 inchesBT981TK is made of #3cr14 stainless steel and coated with titanium ion carbide(TiC)Manufacturers Check Price
Ka-Bar Becker BK2Fixed5.5 inches10.5 inches longBlade made of 1095 cro-van steel blade for strength, Handle made of Grivory materialLimited lifetime warranty Check Price
Tool Logic SLP2Folding3-inch, 50/50 serrated stainless steel with satin blade bead blast finish6 x 6 x 4 inches1/2 Serrated Knife With LED Flashlight, Magnesium Fire Starter and Signal WhistleThree Year Limited Warranty Check Price
Cold Steel SRK San Mai IIIFixed6-Inches10 3/4-InchSteel: VG-1 San Mai III, Sheath: Secure-Ex SheathManufacturers Check Price
Fallkniven A1Fixed6.375 inches11"Satin Spear Point Blade, Kraton A1ZManufacturers Check Price
Buck Knives 65 Hood PunkFixed5.62 inch 5160 steel blade11 inches5160 steel blade with powder coat finish, Ultra lightweight multi-function survival knife weighs 7.4 ozForever Warranty made in the USA Check Price
Tops Knives Mini Tom Brown TrackerFixed2 1/4"6 1/2"Blade Steel: Black Traction Coated 1095 High Carbon RC 56-58Manufacturers Check Price
Brite Strike BSTLSK-100-CEFixed3.5-inches8.6 x 1.4 x 0.4 inchesMILS SPEC 6061 aluminum with hard anodized finishManufacturers Check Price

 

=== Begins Here #NoOffensePlease

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’ll find something useful here on this site. My goal here is to bring you real world survival knife reviews. With the cost of knives in general, and survival knives specifically, I hope to let you see first hand how well built a survival knife is before you lay down your hard earned money. If you’re anything like me, I’ve ordered more than one kind of knife and had it be a piece of crap once I got it. My goal here is to help prevent this for my readers.

Now having said that, I realize that by default, what you consider a good survival knife may differ from my definition of a survival knife. I hope this site will at least shed some light on some characteristics that you find important.

In my opinion, a Survival Knife differs greatly from a Tactical Knife, although many people consider the two the same. I believe that a Survival Knife can be used as a Tactical Knife, but a Tactical Knife is usually less than ideal for most true survival situations.

If you have any comments or suggestions, please feel free to drop me a line and let me know. I look forward to hearing from you and I’m anxious to get started reviewing some Survival knives.

#1 Gerber Prodigy Survival Combat Knife Review

Although Gerber calls this a Survival/Combat knife, I believe that title has more to do with marketing than with what this knife really is, which is a Best Survival Knife. If you really wanted to get down to the nitty gritty, any knife can be classified as a “combat knife”. Anyhow, I chose the Gerber Prodigy Survival Knife as my first survival knife review. I have a couple of these and they are like a Timex. They take a beating and keep on going (notice how I avoided using the Timex trademarked phrase? LOL)

 

The Gerber Prodigy in the picture is the most recent purchase of this model. I found it, along with some other knives, listed in the Classified section of my local paper. I picked them all up for a song!

The Prodigy is another one of Jeff Freeman’s design. I call it the little brother to the Gerber LMF knives, because basically they’re a scaled down version of the larger knives.

The Gerber Prodigy Survival Combat Knife is MIRS (Military Integration Resource System) Compliant. The sheath is also MOLLE compatible. The nylon sheath comes with a leg strap with buckle plus additional straps for securing it in many different configurations. The actual part of the sheath that protects the blade secures to the Nylon via two screws and a strap at the bottom of the hard plastic sheath as well as two hook and loop straps that wrap through and around the hard plastic section. One feature that I love about the sheath is the friction release thumb lock. This keeps the knife in the sheath nice and secure. One major complaint that I have is that the hard plastic sheath does not have a drain hole! At least I couldn’t see one and I find this alarming that it would be overlooked.

There was a time when I hated serrated knives. It was my belief that any knife with any serration was a cheap knife and the only reason for the serration was because the manufacturer used cheap steel and the knife wouldn’t hold an edge.

How times have changed! I now lean toward knives with serrated edges. And not only on my Survival knives, but my hunting knives and every day carry knives as well. A good quality knife with high quality steel increases it’s effectiveness when they are serrated!

The Gerber Prodigy Survival Knife is no exception. This would be a great knife even without any serrated edges. But about the first half of this knife has a meaty serrated edge. It’s sharp folks! I’ve hacked through sheets of tin, green tree limbs, seasoned lumber, as well as many other materials with my other Gerber Prodigy’s and they, ’ve all performed very well. I can tell you that it takes quite a bit to dull the serrated edges of this knife.

Serrated edges are a must on Survival Knives in my opinion. As I stated above, a serrated edge just increases the effectiveness of a good knife. The options for what you can cut and hack with such a knife in a survival situation just jumps tremendously when your Best Survival Knife has a serrated edge.

The Gerber Prodigy has a black oxide coating for corrosion protection. It also dampens any shine that could give a person away in a combat situation. The days of mirrored finishes are over for good combat knives!

Moving right along, the blade of the Prodigy is 4 3/4 inches long, with the knife being 9 3/4 inches overall. The handle is a molded soft grip handle. I must say, this handle fits my rather large hands perfectly. It’s not too big or too small. More importantly, I can hold onto it while working with the knife. It doesn’t matter if I’m digging, hacking, cutting, sawing or whacking, I can keep a firm grasp on this knife. The end of the handle comes to a pointed end with a steel tip. You can add a lanyard onto the handle at this area, although I don’t know why you would, or use it for puncturing sheet metal or breaking glass in an emergency. If you choose to break glass with this bad boy, I sure you have have some thick leather gloves on. The steel tip on this knife is not as prominent as it is on the LMF series.

Another thing that I dearly loved was that the blade come out of the box hair shaving sharp! That’s a huge plus in my book. It tells me that the manufacturer cares enough about their knives and the Customers who buy them to put a sharp edge on them. I don’t care who the manufacturer is, if I get one of their new knives and it’s dull, I just feel the knife was cheaply made.

There’s not much about the Gerber Prodigy survival knife that I would change. It’s a great survival knife and I carry one on most of my camping trips. If I plan on being out longer than a few days, then you’ll probably find me carrying the Gerber LMF II.

As stated earlier, I don’t consider this a Combat Knife, although it will do very well in that situation. I believe if you’re wanting a knife strictly for tactical or combat purposes, there are better choices out there. But for survival, you’ll be hard pressed to find another knife and sheath combination that will beat the Gerber Prodigy Survival Combat Knife.

#2 The Buck Pilot Knife Review

 

I mulled over the decision on whether or not to put the Buck Pilot in Survival Knife Reviews. For no other than it’s size. And it’s for this reason I finally decided to put it in the review after all. For the sake of this argument, size alone should not be the sole defining factor of describing a Best Survival Knife! Although the Buck Pilot is a small folding knife, it has qualities that any survival knife needs in order to be successful.

Up front, one of the things I don’t like about the Buck Pilot is that it’s made in China. I was surprised as anyone when Buck started outsourcing the manufacturing of some knife designs. It will take some time to see if the quality of the Chinese knives are as good as the ones made here in the U.S.A.

I’ve seen some Buck Pilot knife reviews that say Buck would not put their name on something that wasn’t a quality product. I’ve heard that same arguement from other companies when they outsource their products overseas and for many of them, the quality suffers. We’ll just have to wait and see if this is the case with Buck knives.

The Buck Pilot is a folding knife. The blade is stainless steel with a drop point. I found that the knife opened easily and I could do it with one hand. I also liked the stainless steel clip on the knife. This allows it to be clipped either inside your pocket or on the outside. You could even just clip it to your belt if you liked. This clip also helps stabilize the knife should you have to lash it to a stick for a longer reach or use as a spear.

I bought the Buck Pilot that has a partial serrated edge. The serration on this knife are sharp and easily cut through hard plastic sheeting, leather, rubber hose and saplings. This pocket knife got dull rather quick in my opinion. But of course I was cutting everything under the Sun this day. If you’ve ever had a Buck knife, then you know some can be very hard to sharpen. This is especially true for the ones made here in the U.S.

It only took a few strokes on a ceramic stick to get the Pilot back to razor sharpness. I would imagine that under normal use, the knife would remain sharp for a long time.

I didn’t put this knife through any torture test such as batoning or using as a spear or putting it in a vise and seeing how far it would bend. To me, a lot of this is pure nonsense and only used for the drama crowd. Yeah, even batoning! If I need some split wood, I carry a hatchet or a heavy machete like a Woodsman’s Pal.

I suppose I might regret not carrying a huge bowie type survival knife if a plane I was on crashed deep in the forest and no one knew it went down. Of course, with my luck, the baggage that my knife was in would have probably been thrown on another flight!

The test I did perform with the Buck Pilot knife consisted of cutting normal (somewhat) stuff like saplings, cane, leather, plastic sheets and heavy cardboard. It handled everything pretty well.

But the real test is that I’ve been carrying it around for over a month in the woods. I’ve taken it exploring, camping, fishing and small game hunting. I’ve grown use to having this knife clipped inside my right pocket and it’s always at the ready.

I found that the folding knife mechanism keeps working well even after hard use. This knife has folded easily even when wet and dirty. That’s something I can’t say for some other folding type knives I’ve used over the years.

Overall, the knife has been pretty good. I’m a little amazed that a $20 knife has stood up to the things I put it through. On the downside, since I use a knife more than the average Joe, I have to sharpen it more than some of my other knives I’ve used for daily carry. Since I enjoy sharpening knives, it isn’t a big deal but for those who don’t know how or don’t care to do it, it could become a pain real quick.

Hey, if nothing else this knife is worth $20. I doubt you’ll find a better knife for the money…with the possible exception being the Mora knife. Buy one and throw in the glove box or tackle box. If you need a knife and don’t have your favorite survival knife handy, the Buck Pilot knife could be your saving grace!

Survival Knife or Hatchet – Which Is Better

Okay, I’m going to come clean. I get a huge laugh out of many of the so called ‘Best Survival Knife Reviews’ on YouTube. I watch a lot of these and realize that the person doing the review has probably never, or very rarely, used a knife in either a Camping or Survival situation. Well, that’s not fair, most of us have never been in a true survival situation where we had to depend on our blades for our life. But in reality, most of us who buy survival knives do so to take them camping with us or out hiking around the woods.

But a lot of these survival knife reviews are just utterly ridiculous and really shows how naive some so called knife experts really are. I also see the question of “Which is better, a hatchet or survival knife?”

Let’s take the debate about whether or not one should carry a hatchet on a hiking/camping trip or a survival knife. I could make this debate very short and simply point out the fact that the Best Survival Knife out there isn’t as good as the cheapest hatchet. Period. End of debate.

 

But, that would be very boring wouldn’t it, although it is true. I have a Fallkniven H1. (which I’ll get around to doing a review on one of these days) This knife is considered by many to be the Best Survival Knife known to man. I’ll beg to differ, but that’s a conversation for a later time. Would I trade my $20 1 3/4 pound head hatchet for the Fallkniven in a survival situation. Hell no!

I get a kick out of all the reviewers who think batoning is the true test of a Best Survival Knife. It just isn’t so and the reason you see so many doing it is because there isn’t many other things you can do in a knife review (realistically) that is attention grabbing. For those who don’t know what batoning is, it’s basically splitting wood. And except for the smallest saplings, a hatchet will do the job much better and quicker than a survival knife!

How about cutting trees down? George Washington didn’t use a long survival knife to chop the Cherry tree down, he used a hatchet! A survival knife may be quicker on saplings up to a 1/2 inch, anything above that and a hatchet will be quicker and safer.

The same goes for pounding stakes into the ground. Yeah, you can do it with a survival knife and rock, but a hatchet will get the job done quicker and safer.

In fact, other than cutting cordage, small limbs or other things of that sort, there’s not much a survival knife can do that a hatchet can’t do better.

What about defense? Well, if you’re asking me which one I would choose if backed into a corner, a hatchet or a big knife, I think either one would suffice just fine. Remember, there was a reason that the Indians and Frontiersmen chose to carry tomahawks. That compact steel head of the hatchet can do a lot more damage that a single knife. In fact, the mass weight of the hatchet head that causes it to be better than a knife at chopping also makes it a formidable weapon!

But having the slicing and jabbing ability makes a large knife as equal as a hatchet in the self defense role. But in reality, if I am cornered, I’ll have a surprise for the attackers that do not include a knife or hatchet 😉

Does this mean I leave my knives at home when I go camping or hiking. Of course not. I’d sooner leave my pack at home! But depending on where I plan on going and how long I plan on staying out, it’s a good chances that you’ll find me with a hatchet.

Don’t take this article the wrong way either. I love my knives. I love the outdoors. But the older I get, the less sensationalism I need in the outdoors. I just want to get the damn wood cut. And the fastest and safest way to do that, is with a hatchet. Unless you have a pocket chainsaw handy!

I’m sure this will not end the ‘Which is better, a hatchet or survival knife’ debate, but hopefully you’ll stand back and have a honest look at carrying a hatchet.

#3 Buck Paklite Skinner Review

Hey Guys and Gals. I found this Buck Paklite Skinner at Wally World recently and thought I take it for a spin. I’m not a big fan of all metal minimalist designed knives, which is one reason I almost passed this knife up. But I figured for a $20 bill I could find some use for it, even if it was only to throw in my boat or glove box of my pickup.

Once I got it home and out of the bubble package, which is a freakin’ chore, one which you need a bigger knife for, my first impression of this knife was “flimsy”. Although it doesn’t bend obviously, it just ‘felt’ flimsy. Possibly because of it’s ultra light weight, I dunno.

Next, I noticed that the Buck Paklite Skinner didn’t fit my hand very well. Certainly not as well as I would have liked. If the handle had only been an inch longer, it may not have felt so small and flimsy in my hand.

Two of the biggest benefits I can find about this knife is that, number 1, it’s made in the U.S.A. Number 2, it comes out of the package razor sharp!

This knife is made of 420HC steel, which if you know Buck Knives you know that this steel is what they make most of their knives out of. It’s an older type steel and while it may not be the hardest knife steel on the market today, it has a proven track record of dependable performance. It’s also not so hard as to make it difficult to put an edge on Buck knives either.

The Buck Paklite would make a great Small Game knife. I could see it being perfect for Squirrels and Rabbits as well as for skinning fur bearing animals. It would do an okay job at skinning big game, but you’ll probably want to choke up on the knife to give yourself a little better blade control.

This knife comes with a nylon sheath with a plastic insert to keep you from cutting the sheath to pieces everytime you sheath the knife or take it out.

While this isn’t a knife that I’d carry as a main knife, even if I was small game hunting or day hiking, it is one I’d throw in my pack for a backup. It’s so lightweight, you’d never know it’s there. The knife will hold an edge well and you’ll be able to sharpen it rather easy. Maybe you’ll find use for one of the many cutouts in the knife. The only think I see is that the hole in the butt would make a great place to tie on some para cord.

If you’re looking for a knife that you won’t lose sleep over if you lose it or it walks off, try the Buck Paklite Skinner. I think you’ll find it handy if you do have to use it and lightweight enough that it doesn’t remind you that its there.

#4 SOG Jungle Primitive Review

I have to admit it, I bought the F03T-N SOG Jungle Primitive because it looked like one bad ass survival knife. But deep down I knew, something this cheap would not be a top of the line performer in a survival setting. Was I right or was I wrong? Well my good friend, keep reading!

 

Once I had the SOG JP in my hand, I knew I had to take it out immediately and do an impromptu SOG Jungle Primitive Review with it. Since I live in the boonies so to speak, it was rather easy to find stuff to test out the SOG on.

First off, when I received the knife, I opened it and looked it over good. Just as any of you would. I then rolled it around in my hand getting a feel for it. I liked the heft of the knife and unlike other reviewers I’ve read, I actually like the weight forward feel of the knife. I also like the handle. Even when wet, I had no trouble holding onto the knife. Even when I tried it wearing heavy leather gloves, this knife was a cinch to hold onto.

SOG Jungle Primitive Field Test

One of the things that I didn’t care for right off the bat was that this knife came right out of the box dull. That really chaps my backside! It wasn’t butter knife dull, but it sure as heck was not razor sharp! So I had to spend some time with my Razors Edge sharpening stones and in no time, I had a good edge on it.

Just a note to those of you who sharpen your own knives. I know a lot of people like very shallow grinds on their knives. Many will say a 20 ro 22 degree bevel is the “perfect” angle to sharpen a knife. Well, if we were talking about Kitchen knives or hunting knives, I might agree. But with a Best Survival Knife, I want an angle greater than that. A higher angle will not dull as quickly and performs chopping or heavy duty cutting chores better without dulling as quick.

Now, back to my SOG Jungle Primitive Review.

survival knives reviewI had a bunch of sucker saplings coming up around a tree in my yard. I decided this is where I’d start with the field test. The Jungle Primitive did an okay job of whacking those suckers down. Not as good as if I’d had an axe or hatchet, but then again this knife isn’t as heavy as either one of those.

I stopped by several Maple trees that also had some suckers and finished those off as well. One thing I was beginning to see is that this Survival Knife is a little light for chopping work. The weight forward design did help a little, but overall it took a lot of effort to cut through a pile of sucker saplings.

In a survival situation, you’d be using a lot of calories trying to hack enough fuel for a fire or saplings and limbs for a shelter. Maybe too many depending on where you were and the time of year.

Next, I have a decent sized dead Elm in the back yard that I’ve been cutting on for a few days and I decided to try the Jungle Primitive out on it to see how the saw on the back of the knife worked. I also wanted to chop on something a little beefier than a sapling.review of SOG jungle primitive

To my amazement, the saw teeth did a pretty good job. The only problem is that there should have been more of them! It will take you a while to saw through anything substantial due to the short length of saw teeth on the back.

The chopping experiment went about the same on the dead Elm as it did on the green samplings. A lot of work for a little effort!

After hacking on the saplings and then on the dead Elm (which is pretty hard when seasoned), the knife was beginning to dull again. There were a few more things I wanted to try, so I went to the wood pile for my next test. To see how well the knife threw.

Needless to say, the weight forward design really messes up the balance of the knife. It took many tries at 15 feet to get the feel of the knife and even then, success was not guaranteed! Let’s just say this knife isn’t going to be your friend if you get into a knife throwing competition!

What’s The Best Use For A SOG Jungle Primitive Knife?

While I wouldn’t turn my nose up at this knife if I found myself in the middle of the Wilderness with nothing else to rely on. But having said that, I don’t see this knife as a hard core Best Survival Knife. It would be a welcomed addition to any Wilderness camping trip as it can do many chores effortlessly. But as a stand alone hard core survival knives, there are many more choices on the market that are better.

I have to say that the sheath was one of my favorite things about this knife. Everything worked the way it should (meaning the snap straps were not 1/8 inch too short). The sheath has a pocket that can be used to hold small objects. I would find a good quality honing stone and put it in there. If you use the knife a lot you’re going to need it!

If you need a throw around knife, you know, those you keep in your fishing or camping bag, then this knife is just the ticket. It’s inexpensive if you loose it but still sturdy enough and useful enough to get most of those outdoor jobs done.

SOG Jungle Primitive Specifications

Okay, I saved the specs for last for you anal types! 🙂

Blade: 9.5 inch long stainless steel blade with a black oxide finish. Saw teeth along the back with a small serrated section near the base of the blade.

Handle Molded Kraton. I found this handle to perform well in my bare hands and with heavy gloves on.

What comes in the box: The F03T-N Jungle Primitive knife and nylon sheath.

Overall length: 15.3 inches

Weight: 14 ounces

Best Prices on the SOG Jungle Primitive Knife

I did a little shopping online to find the best deal on the Jungle Primitive Knife and this is what I found.

How to Choose A Survival Knife – The Basics

 

Imagine yourself trapped in an island, in the Wilderness or in the Desert somewhere. Alone, no food and no one to call for help. Can you survive a day or two while the rescuers are on their way to find you? Yes you can if you have a quality survival knife with you and keep your senses.

Survival knives are probably the most important tool ever created by man. They are made to be used in wilderness when no other equipment is available. Aside from being handy, these knives are designed to do tough jobs like cutting branches and skinning animals. Hunters, hikers, outdoor sports enthusiast, forest rangers and military personnel use this knife.

There are several things to consider when choosing a good survival knife.

1. Tang. This is the part of the blade that extends down into the handle. The longer the tang, the stronger is the knife generally speaking. A good quality survival knife has a full Tang – the one that goes all the way to the base of the handle.

2. Blade. When choosing a good blade, it is important to consider the thickness, design, length and the type of metal used for the blade. In terms of thickness, a good general rule is about 3/16 of an inch thickness is the best for survival knives. There are two designs available for blades – straight and serrated. Straight blades are best for people who don’t want to waste time sharpening because it took more time and special type of sharpener to sharpen serrated blades. It is also easier to chop or cut woods with straight blade knife. Most survival knives have blades that range from four to six inches long and are made by either carbon or stainless steel. Most people prefer stainless steel blades because they are virtually indestructible and can last a long time without rusting. If a stainless blade is your choice, than look for ones made from ATS-34 steel. By the way, stainless steel really isn’t a “never stain” steel, it’s a “stain less” steel. It has more chrome content and is more rust resistant than carbon steels.

But having said that, there is a good argument for survival knives made out of high quality steel like D2 and 0-1 tool steel. While not “Stainless”, they are very good knife steel. In fact, since many stainless steels are soft, many experts consider the D2 and 0-1 steels superior. If you really want to get down to the nuts and bolts of knife steel, here’s knife steel chart from A.G. Russell.

3. Handle. The handle of survival knives varies from each other. These can be a polymer, aluminum, wood, bone or horn of animals and even stainless steel. When choosing a handle, it is best to avoid those with cheap features like mini storage area and compass. These are for uneducated people who don’t have a clue. Although it may look cool to have one, these features affect the grip and general usefulness of the knife. In reality many times, suck gimmicks usually signify a cheap knife. Would you wan to depend on a $20 gimmick to save you life? Better handle material tends to be leather, micarta or kraton in my opinion.

4. Sheath. Although sheaths do not affect the performance of the knife, it definitely affects the way you carry it. Some knives are sold with sheaths while others don’t have. Sheaths can be made from a variety of materials but an ideal kind is the one with strap, belt and attachments (lower or lanyard). A perfect sheath is one that allows the knife to be drawn quickly and fits perfectly with it. Leather and nylon are the preferred sheath materials. Some newer models like the Gerber Prodigy have sheaths made out of a combination of materials like nylon and plastic. Surprisingly these sheaths are durable and functional.

It is always an advantage if one owns a survival knife because you’ll never know when you’re going to need it and when choosing one, it is always best to consider the quality first, price second. No one who has ever been lost or stranded has said “Damn, I wish I’d bought a cheap survival knife!“

Best Survival Knife 2017 | Buyer’s Guide
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