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Best Tactical Knife 2017 & Buyer’s Guide

The thought process it takes to choose the best tactical knife is extensive. First, you have to determine the use of your knife as well as know the difference that makes a tactical knife. Knowing these two things will help with your choice but narrowing down the use will allow you to make a more detailed and informed decision on which knife will be best for you as an individual. 

What are the Differences Between a Tactical Knife and a Regular Knife?

There are several differences between a Tactical knife and a Regular knife. A tactical knife is any that meets military specification, may that be fixed-blade or folding. A regular knife, fixed or folding, is most commonly used by the sportsman in hunting, fishing, and household utility activities. Regular knives are often made of lower quality material.

But the tactical knives are made of harder materials with harder edge retention as to stay sharper longer. Usually, a tactical knife is used by military personnel, law enforcement, survivalist, outdoor enthusiast, traveler and amateur collector.

A regular folding knife has a lock that locks the blade to the handle and it’s different because it tends to be a little harder in releasing it. The difference between the two kinds of knives is as vast as it is similar to the naked eye. Once you delve deeper, you will start to understand the complexities of knife craftsmanship.

 

Top 10 Best Tactical Knives Review

Image

Name

BLade material & Edge

handle material & Tang

Blade &

Overall

length

Sheath or Lock

Our Review

8Cr13MoV


Half Serrated

Glass-filled Nylon

3.1"


7.4"

Liner Lock/SpeedSafe

High Carbon


Half Serrated

Rubber & TPE Overmold


Full Tang

4.75"


10"

Mildew-Resistant Nylon

High Carbon


Half Serrated

Rubber & TPE Overmold

3.6"


8.5"

Nylon

 
Lock Back

AUS-8


Half Serrated

Glass-Reinforced Nylon


Full Tang

4.85"

9.5"

Kydex

9Cr18MoV


Half Serrated

G10

4.2"


9.6"

Nylon


Liner Lock

1095 Cro-van


Plain

Leather


Full Tang

7"


11.88"

Leather

154CM


Half Serrated

Glass-Reinforced Nylon

2.91"


6.78"

AXIS Lock

154CM


Plain

6061-T6 Anodized Aluminum

3.4"


7.9"

Liner Lock/SpeedSafe

Columbia River Knife and Tool's M16-14SFG Special Forces Folding Knife

8Cr14MoV


Half Serrated

G10

3.88"


9.25"

Liner Lock

High Carbon


Plain

Molded Rubber


Full Tang

4.3"


9.1"

Plastic

1. Kershaw 1605CKTST Clash Folding Knife with SpeedSafe

Kershaw is one of the best tactical knife brands in the world. It was established in 1974 with a view to design and produce knives and tools; the users of these products would be proud to buy, use and carry. The Kershaw 1605CKTST Clash best tactical folding knife is one of them. The 8Cr13MoV stainless steel made blade has excellent toughness and wears resistance in any harsh condition. The blade core is efficiently heat-treated for razor sharpness and better edge retention. The 3.1 inches partial serrated multi-tasking blade is useful for cutting flexible and hard object like rope, webbing, cordage, set belt, electric cable, limbs or branches. The drop point blade is finished with black oxide coating that gives it non-reflective stealthy look and increases corrosion and rust resistance.

The 4.3 inches textured glass-filled nylon ergonomic handle contours with a secure grip pattern that provides solid and non-slip grip in your hand. Most importantly, the Kershaw 1605CKTST Clash is designed with SpeedSafe assisted manual opening mechanism. With full authority, a light push back on the top of the flipper and the SpeedSafe deploys the blade super fast with a light jolt. A liner lock system lockups the blade in place solidly and safely. The full length of this knife is 7.4 inches and closed length 4.25 inches and weight 4.3 oz. It has a reversible pocket clip and comes with lifetime great Kershaw warranty. This folder is highly recommended for slicing, camping, and tactical use.

2. Gerber Bear Grylls Ultimate Serrated Edge Knife

Gerber the name I always use to recommend when someone needs a tactical fixed blade knife for survival expedition. That’s why I have kept the Gerber Bear Grylls Ultimate Knife in the second position on my top list. The 4.75 inches blade core is formed with toughest 7Cr17Mov High Carbon Stainless Steel that has 57-59 HRC rating and excellent rust resistance. This type of ultimate steel is far better than 440A or S30V steels. The 7Cr17Mov has higher edge retention and keeps razor sharpness for a long period even a heavy uses. The drop-point blade has a stealthy gray color Toxic coating for increasing corrosion or scratch resistance in any harsh environment. Due to its full tang design, the knife is as strong as easy to use and maneuverable. The 3.2 mm thick half serrated straight edge blade is a best tactical fixed blade knife for feathering or chapping sticks, slicing, firewood batoning, chopping and other fundamental works.

The main body of the handle is created with TPE Overmold top quality plastic. The gray areas of the handle are covered with a textured rubber coating which provides proper traction and comfortable grip while using it by your bloody, muddy or wet hand. The full tang steel pommel at the base of the ergonomic handle can be used as a hammer. The handle has two extra lanyard holes in the middle of the knife. Those are used to lashing the knife with a stick to make a spear.

Another important feature of this knife is its Mildew-Resistant Nylon made a multi-purpose sheath. It is mildew resistant, military-grade and lightweight including friction lock option and velcro closure those keep the knife tightly. Additionally, it has a belt loop for sideways carry. The sheath also contains a fire starter ferrocerium rod in a waterproof holder on the upright slot, Bear’s “Priorities of Survival” pocket guide and emergency whistle. On the opposite side, you will find a carbide pull-through diamond stone sharpener that can be moved for left or right-handed use, or replacement or removal. The 10 inches best tactical knife has a limited lifetime warranty and weight 13.4 oz.

3. Gerber Bear Grylls Serrated Edge Folding Knife with Sheath

Gerber was founded in 1939 and its headquarter in Portland, Oregon, USA. This American brand was established with a view to providing best quality gear for hunters, survivor, tradesmen, and soldiers. This compact knife has built up with the collaboration between survival specialist Bear Grylls and Gerber. Its 3.6 inches drop point blade is created with High Carbon Stainless Steel and finished with Teflon coating. The combination of these two elements enhances the blade durability, corrosion and rust resistance. Because of its higher HRC 57-59 and Carbon ratio, the edge retention of the blade is very good after a heavy use. The half serrated blade is ideal for feathering or chapping sticks, firewood batoning, slicing and cutting flexible material like webbing, rope, set belt, electric cable etc.

In the handle, the major structure or orange parts are constructed with TPE Overmold premium quality plastic. The gray color rubber grip area of the handle is made of ergonomic textured. The rubber grip pattern prevents slippage and protects from serious injury as well as ensures maximum comfort when using it in any hard work. Gerber Bear Grylls Folding Sheath Knife is occupied with lock back system. The thumb stud on both sided helps easy and quick single-handed deploying. The tactical knife comes with exceptionally lightweight and durable nylon sheath which is military-grade and mildew resistant. This knife has a lifetime warranty. The Folding Sheath Knife is a perfect tactical gear for survivalist, hunter, camper, outdoor traveler, law enforcement, military personnel, knife enthusiast or collector. Its complete length is 8.5 inches and the folding length is 4.9 inches and weight 4.3 oz. The bonus – Bear’s “Priorities of Survival” pocket guide.

4. SOG SEAL Pup Elite Fixed Blade E37T-K

This best tactical fixed blade knife is praised for its lightweight and corrosion resistant blade. Its blade is made from AUS-8 steel accompanied by a powder-coated finish that aims at serving you in the long-term. Its razor-sharp blade can easily make deep punctures allowing you to move faster when working with it. The blade promises wear resistance a well as toughness to boost durability. The edge of the blade is partially serrated to deliver clean cuts as well as easy maneuverability.

The handle is ergonomically contoured allowing for an outstanding balance so it ideally fits comfortably in your hand. Thanks to its material, it is abrasion and impact-resistant so you can even use it for tasks that are time-consuming. It is glass-reinforced nylon material making it’s durable and classy. This does not compromise on performance and its style eases handling. Overall, it delivers on durability and sharp blade as well as a firm and strong handle.

5. Harnds Military-Grade Double Safety Lock Tactical Folding Hunting Knife

Multitasking, military-grade, one hand deployment and fold, large size, razor sharp robust blade and handle, double security locking system, suitable price, hard-to-beat all-rounder tactical folding knife – are you looking for this? Then this Harnds Military-Grade Tactical Gear is definitely for you. The blade core of this Harnds knife is produced by black 9Cr18MoV stainless steel. Due to its higher hardness rating 58-62, the blade has excellent edge retention and stays razor sharp after a heavy use. The 4.2 inches drop point blade has titanium carbonitride finish that turns it stealthy as well as enhances rust and corrosion resistance. The half serrated blade is 33 mm (0.15-Inch) thick that means you can use it for cutting hard and flexible materials like limbs or branches, electric cable, webbing, rope, cordage, set belt etc.

The G10 handle is textured with the black and red grip pattern. The ergonomic finger grooves ensure solid and comfortable holding even your hand is wet or muddy or bloody. The most important and unique feature is its lock back and Liner lock system which assure double safety and guarantee. It has a steel pocket clip for everyday carry. This folder comes with a wear resistance Nylon Sheath, portable in your bag or with the belt and limited lifetime warranty. The Harnds Military-Grade Tactical Knife is highly recommended for hunting, slicing, camping, survival, and fishing. Its weight is 11.3 oz, closed length 5.4-inch and overall length 9.6 inches.

6. KA-BAR Full Size US Marine Corps Fighting Knife

This best tactical knife has a seven-inch blade and is made in the USA. The sheath, made in Mexico, is 100% leather. The sheath is strong, durable, and rugged. It will not break. The sheath will keep the blade sharp and protected. The easy-to-grip leather handle has a gold-plated pommel and guard. The blade is made with tough 1095Cro-van steel. It is a full tang tactical knife.

This material will keep your blade sharp and durable. It is also corrosion resistant. During WWII it was just a general issue knife. Today, worldwide, this is the most famous fixed blade knife design. In the knife world, it is an icon. The KA-BAR Full Size US Marine Corps Fighting Knife is the first choice for those of service who carry it as their own personal knife. It weighs 11.2 ounces.

The knife dimension is 7 x 0.165 x 11.875 inches. This KA-BAR USMC knife is very easy to carry. It can be used as a hunting and survival knife. The tactical knife can also be used for digging, like a screwdriver, or hammer in the field. This blade can be re-sharpened if necessary. The balance of the knife is great. It has a sufficient curve for slicing, dressing, or skinning.

Pros

  • World’s No-1 tactical & USMC knife
  • Unique design handle for essential grip
  • Lightweight and ergonomic design for tactical work
  • Best quality leather sheath
  • Stealthy featured 7-inch fixed blade

Cons

  • After receiving the knife, check where it is made in
  • To opening anything do not use it as a lever

7. Benchmade - Mini Griptilian 556 Knife, Drop-Point

Benchmade was founded in 1979 in California as Bali-Song then in 1988 evolving its name to the Pacific Cutlery Corporation. The Benchmade evaluation was set out with a dream to become world’s best knife manufacturing company and now they are. At the present time, The Benchmade Knife Company is running by Les de Asis and Roberta in Oregon City, Oregon, United States. The American made Benchmade – Mini Griptilian 556 Knife is featured with the 154CM stainless steel blade. It is finished with the non-reflective black coating. 154CM is a better stainless steel than 8Cr13Mov or VG-10 and has better wear and scratch resistance. The 2.91 inches partially serrated blade keeps the sharpness for a long time. Higher (58-61) HRC, 2.54 mm thickness and razor-sharp drop point blade design have made it an ultimate cutting tool for different types of elements like rope, set belt, electric cable, webbing, cordage, limbs or branches etc.

The handle is made of injection molded Glass Filled Nylon (GFN) and decorated with diamond shape grip pattern that ensures solid grip for a hard task and comfortable for everyday carry. The knife is assembled with one-handed opening and closing ambidextrous design Benchmade’s AXIS lock. Very old school, you can swiftly flick this open with a certain amount of thumb pressure. Both thumb studs are approved and field tested, average in shape and size. A perfect EDC knife for slicing, push cutting, piercing for outdoor activities and tactical purposes. Benchmade provides a limited lifetime warranty and free lifesharp service. Benchmade – Mini Griptilian 556 Knife has a reversible pocket clip. It measures 6.78 inches open length, 3.87 inches closed length and weight 2.81 oz.

8. Kershaw Ken Onion Blur Folding Knife

best tactical knife

Important Features and Specifications

 

Blade Length: 3.4 inches
Blade Thickness: 0.125 inches
Blade Material: Sandvik 14C28N Stainless Steel
Overall Length: 7.9 inches
HARDNESS/HRC: 58-60
Handle Material: 6061-T6 Anodized Aluminum
Knife Weight: 3.9 oz. (110.6 g)
Made In: Knife USA

This best tactical folding knife has an open blade length of 3.4 inches. When it is closed, it is 4.5 inches. It only weighs 3.9 ounces. It has the easy one-hand opening with a SpeedSafe system. To open all you do is pull back on the flipper or manually push on the thumb stud. Inside the knife’s handle is a riveted strip of stainless steel.

This is generally used with a lightweight handle. It enables a lighter slimmer knife with the security and strength of a locking liner. The pocket clip is reversible. You can change it to a tip-down or tip-up carry. The knife is made in Tualatin, Oregon. The knife has a slightly re-curved big blade. This best tactical knife is ideal for multitasking with excellent piercing and slicing capabilities. The blade is made of high-performance Sandvik 14C28N stainless steel.

It is Diamond-Like Carbon (DLC) coated for extra carbon resistance and hardness. The handle is made of durable 6061-T6 anodized aluminum to make it durable, lightweight, tough, and scratch resistance. When it is anodized, this means it can accept a dye to change the handle color. For a very solid grip, there are Trac-Tec grip-tape inserts on the handles. Technically this is not a switchblade knife.

Pros

  • Words best tactical pocket knife
  • Lightweight, reversible pocket clip & easy to carry
  • Excellent design aluminum handle
  • Liner lock & 100% safe with SpeedSafe assisted
  • Thumb stud for easy one hand opening
  • Multi tasking and stealthy featured durable blade
  • Made in the USA

Cons

  • Some users find problem with opening and locking mechanism
  • Do not use it for any hard work

9. Columbia River Knife and Tool's M16-14SFG Special Forces Folding Knife

Columbia River Knife and Tool's M16-14SFG Special Forces Folding Knife

CRKT (Columbia River Knife & Tool) is one of the praised names in tactical knife and gear industry. It was founded in 1994 and reputed for its innovative design and production of tools, knives and lifestyle gears for the worker, sportsmen, outdoor enthusiast and professional. The tanto shape blade is constructed of stiff 8Cr14MoV stainless steel and its hardness is 58-59 HRC. This type of high-quality steel has excellent edge holding ability and greater strength. The 3.86 inches tactical blade, hardware, and the whole frame are coated with a black titanium nitride finish for making it non-reflective, increasing corrosion and scratch resistance. Its tough hollow grind can penetrate hard objects and the unique design veff serrations blade is ideal for cutting rope, electric cable, cordage, webbing, set belt, limbs or branches etc. Overall Length of the knife is 9.25 inches, folded 5.375 inches, weight 5.9 oz.

The M16-14SFG Special Forces Folding Knife handle is designed with scales of non-reflective black G10, friction grooves with stainless steel liners. The G10 is known for its lightweight, best insulating properties, aggressive and solid gripping texture. The knife is featured with automated liner safety mechanism. This innovative automated liner safety design has taken the locking liner to the next level. The locking system has a pin between the frame and locking liner. That pin uses as an extra tier of security. When you need to fold the blade just pull the red color buttoned security lever back, draw the locking liner over and smoothly close the blade into folded position. Additionally, this Special Forces Folding Knife has occupied with the trademark of Kit double checkered thumb studs. Single hand deploying and folding makes it very easy to use. The knife has a reversible pocket clip, limited lifetime warranty and proudly made in the USA.

10. Morakniv Bushcraft Carbon Steel Survival Knife

best tactical knife

Important Features and Specifications

 

Blade Length: 4.3 inches
Blade Thickness: 0.125 inches
Blade Material: Carbon Steel Blade with Anti-corrosive Black Coating
Overall Length: 9.1 inches
HARDNESS/HRC: 56-58
Handle Material: Ergonomic Handle
Knife Weight: 5.4 oz
Sheath: Black Plastic Sheath
Sharpener: Integrated Diamond Sharpener
Fire Starter: Morakniv Fire Starter
Made In: Sweden.
Warranty: Limited lifetime manufacturer’s warranty.

The blade is made of high-carbon steel and one-eighth inches thick. It is extremely durable and sharp. This best technical knife is HRC 56-58 hardened. The blade length is 4.3 inches long. It weighs 5.4 ounces. The knife is hardened to withstand blade stress when splitting wood. The coating of black will help to protect against corrosion.

The carbon blades need to be oiled after using for extra corrosion resistance. To help prevent the knife from easily slipping off it has a Scandi grind. The tactical blade also stays sharp for a long time. It goes into the wood and does not become stuck. The blade of the knife is thin and razor sharp. It has a black plastic sheath comes with Fire Starter and diamond sharpener. The sheath has a removable belt clip and belt loop.

The handle is ergonomic with a high-friction grip of rubber. Makes it easier to handle and carve with. The Fire Start yields 7,000 strikes and creates a 3,000-degree spark. The tactical knife locks securely on the sheath with durable plastic clips. Works well when it is wet. Has a limited lifetime manufacturer’s warranty. It is the definitive carving tool with balanced handling and sharp edge. It can be used for hunting or tactical applications.

Pros

  • This useful tactical knife comes with multiple accessories
  • Straight edge blade suitable for outdoor activities
  • Compact Morakniv fire starter, approximately 7,000 strikes
  • Scandi grind blade edge for stuck free cutting & holding long time sharpness
  • The blade can be used for batoning to cut wood

Cons

  • Comes with cheap sharper
  • There is no lanyard hole with this knife

11. Cold Steel Recon 1 Tactical Knife

Cold Steel Recon 1 Tactical Knife

Important Features and Specifications

 

Blade Length: 4 inches
Blade Thickness: 3.5 mm
Blade Material: Japanese Aus 8A stainless
Overall Length: 9.38 inches
Handle Material: G-10
Knife Weight: 5.3 OZ
Made In: Taiwan

Cold Steel brand is known for raising the knife manufacturing grade in the knife industry. This best tactical folding knife has a 4 inches long partially serrated edge blade. The tanto point blade core is made of imported Japanese AUS 8A steel stainless metal which is 3.5 mm thick and vacuum heat treated as well as sub-zero quenched. The Cold Steel brand also used a thumb disc for making the folding knife easy to open and has a strong fixed pocket clip for comfortable carry.

To prepare it for the tactical mission, the blade is coated with a black Teflon finish that provides it 3 prime tactical advantages. First of all, it makes the blade resist rust. Second, its stealthy feature, this black coating eliminates illumination and reflection of light. Finally, the Teflon finish turns the blade super lubricant and enough slip which can easily go through the taught element without creating any friction.

The Cold Steel Recon 1 Tactical Knife comes with G-10 laminate scales which are scalloped and artfully contoured for a firm, nonslip superior grip. Moreover, the knife is assembled by latest and durable mechanical fasteners and anchored with 6061 heat-treated spacers. The knife is occupied with belt clip / ambidextrous pocket clip and total weight is 5.3 ox only. Most important, this 9.38 inches tactical folder is assembled with the Cold Steel’s revolutionary Tri-Ad locking mechanism, which effectively reduces lock failure.

Pros

  • Highest quality stainless steel blade
  • Excellent grip, non-slip G-10 handle with finger grooves
  • Latest and 100% secure locking mechanism
  • Non-reflective stealthy knife
  • Easy to open and carry

Cons

  • Unusual pressure on back side could break the knife

12. KA-BAR #1213 Black Straight Edge Knife

best tactical knife

Important Features and Specifications

 

Blade Length: 7 inches
Blade Thickness: 0.165 inches
Blade Material: Carbon Steel (1095)
Overall Length: 11.75 inches
Hardness/HRC: 56-58
Handle Material: Kraton
Knife Weight: 0.70 lb
Sheath: Kydex Sheath
Made In: Olean, New York / Sheath Made in Mexico
Warrenty: KA-BAR #1213 offers a limited lifetime warranty

The KA-BAR #1213 Black Straight Edge Knife is one of the best tactical knives on the market today. The seven inch fixed blade knife has been on the market since the 1960s and was modeled after the standard issue Mk 2, used in WWII by USMC soldiers. Its high-carbon steel (1095), blade and full tang make it both secure and nearly indestructible.

The knife comes pre-sharpened at a twenty-degree angle with a straight edge. The handle features a Kraton grip to enable you to use it safely, even under wet or slippery conditions. The tacky nature of the handle’s surface also helps to avoid blisters after long use. The Kydex sheath is MOLLE-capable and featured an internal clip to hold the knife in place.

This is ideal for those who are using this knife for personal defense, as it keeps the knife secure when moving but allows you to pull it free with one firm tug. No handle clasps to impede your combat readiness. While best tactical knife will require some regular upkeep, it has proven the test of time and continues to be the most reliable design around. Whether you are hunting or just an avid
outdoorsman, this is a knife you should have on your list of essential supplies.

Pros

  • The 1095 carbon steel made robust blade
  • High-quality Kraton G composite made handle gives proper grip
  • Upgraded Kydex Sheath has locking feature
  • Perfect knife for survival, tactical, hunting, camping, skinning & cooking use
  • Limited lifetime warranty by KA-BAR

Cons

  • After using it, you need to clean it properly for long term use
  • Don’t use it for cutting wood or hard things

13. Smith & Wesson 8 inch Special Ops M-9 Bayonet Special Forces Knife

best tactical knife

Important Features and Specifications

 

Blade Length: 8 inches
Blade Material: 400 Series Stainless Steel
Overall Length: 12.8 inches (32.6 cm)
Handle Material: Green Polymer
Knife Weight: 14.5 OZ
Made In: Taiwan

The Smith & Wesson 8 inch Special Ops M-9 Bayonet is a best tactical knife for the special force of the army. This tactical fixed blade is highly trusted by the United States military for M16 rifle’s bayonet. The blade core of this tactical knife is made of 420J2 Stainless Steel which is durable as well as stain and rust resistant. Additionally, the blade has spear point shaped and notched spine for cutting thick wood and small tree. There is a spacious blood groove on the body of the blade. The good new is the blade steel, and its hollow grind is so strong so don’t need to sharp it frequently.

The handle is made of Textured Green Nylon Fiber. It has deep grooved and feeling like a soft rubber. The handle has non-slip grip pattern and even if your hands are muddy or wet, it will not slip. The handle has a large hilt for protecting your finger. You will find two models with this tactical fixed knife. One has a full black coating, and another has a silver color blade and dark green handle. Almost, all the features and quality are same to same.

The tactical best knife comes with a tactical black or green sheath. It is made of hard plastic and nylon. The sheath has a 45-degree belt loop, a small extra adaptor, an extra pocket and most importantly a knife sharper. You can easily separate them and attach those altogether. Moreover, the sheath has an adapter, and by joining it with the blade hole, you can use it as a wire cutter.

Pros

  • One of the strongest knives in the world
  • Blade tip can cut through the 9 mm steel
  • Perfect tactical knife for harsh environment
  • Round shape, non-slip handle
  • Useful for versatile work
  • Comfortable and durable tactical sheath
  • Two different colors

Cons

  • The knife is little bit heavier
  • The blade is not a razor sharp blade
  • Not suitable for slashing

14. Buck Knives 0119 Special Fixed Blade Knife

best tactical knife

Important Features and Specifications

 

Blade Length: 6 inches
Blade Thickness: 0.175 inches
Blade Material: 420HC Steel for Excellent Strength
Overall Length: 10.5 inches
HARDNESS/HRC: 57-58
Handle Material: Cocobolo Dymondwood Handle with Brass Pommel
Knife Weight: 7.5 oz
Sheath: Genuine Leather Fitted Sheath
Made In: USA.
Warranty: Buck Forever Warranty

This knife is ideal for detail work, cutting in tight places, hunting, and outdoors. It has a six-inch large clip blade that is 0.175 inches thick. The overall length is 10.5 inches. This best tactical knife has a solid fixed blade. The weight is 7.5 ounces. The blade is made of 420HC Steel for edge retention, corrosion resistance, and strength.

For best performance, the steel blade is hardened to a standard Rc 58. The handle is made of cocobolo wood with polished brass pommel and guard. The sheath is made of genuine fitted leather. It will safely and securely transport the knife in a bag or on a belt. It comes with the Buck Forever Warranty, which guarantees their knives forever.

This tactical fixed blade is all made in the USA. Due to the heating, freezing, and then reheating of the steel is why the knives stay sharp longer. It is also why the knives are sharper when they come out of the box. It is full tang, which means the blade goes all the way through the handle and into the pommel. It is attached with a brass rod. Very comfortable to hold and carry.

Pros

  • A perfect tactical knife for hunting & other outdoor activities
  • Blade shape is Ideal for skinning
  • Unique design for completing versatile task
  • Useful for different kind of hard work at harsh environment
  • High temperature heat treatment 420HC steel blade

Cons

  • No lanyard hole with this knife
  • Handle length not good enough against blade size

How to Choose a Best Tactical Knife – Buyer’s Guide

 

What is the Purpose of Your Best Tactical Knife? 

The usefulness of a knife is completely up to the individual using the knife. Protection, utility, part of your job or just to carry? The uses are vast but the knife chosen is important because many knives are made with specifications and use in mind. A hunting knife used for skinning and cleaning an animal will be made to sharpen more often and have a straight edge. Depending on what the hunter prefers, it may be folding for easier carry or fixed for strength.

If it is being used for a job, then it might be beneficial to understand exactly what the job requires. A carpenter will benefit from a folding knife that has multiple blade types. A Police officer may benefit from a fixed-blade serrated knife for self-defense in the event that it comes to the last resort. You see, knives are created for purposes and choosing the right knife depends on the use for that knife.

Considering the Overall Length of the Tactical Knife

Before choosing a knife, consider the overall length of the knife. A folding knife will have a smaller blade in comparison to a fixed-blade knife due to the fact that the blade has to be folded into the handle. A fixed-blade knife has more chooses for blade length than a folded knife. A folding knife is convenient for utility, concealment and carry but its blade lengths are limited in uses.

Small blades- Fixed blade knives with a small blade are used most frequently for hunting, skinning and cleaning games. They are kept sharp and compact for easy maneuvering. Folding knives with a small blade can be used for the same purpose but they are also used for utility. From cleaning game to opening boxes, to being used as a makeshift screwdriver. The possibilities are endless and storing a folding knife with a small blade is much easier than a fixed blade knife.

Measure the Blade Length According to You Requirement

• Small Blades: 
• Medium Blades: 
• Large Blades: 

Large Blade

Fixed blade knives with a large blade are mainly used for specific purposes in survival, from cutting branches for firewood to filleting a fish. A folding knife with a large blade also has specific purposes. From cutting wood with a saw blade, clean large game animals or self-defense. They are harder to conceal, carry and maneuver compared to smaller blades. An example of a large fixed-blade knife is a machete, often used by survivalists to cut away overgrowth and hunting. A folding knife with a large blade is called a Mega-folder and is classified by any folding knife that has a blade longer than 4.25 inches.

Selecting the Blade Material

Blade material is important because it determines the strength and versatility of the blade. A folding knife will be made with a variety of stainless steels whereas fixed-blade knives are made with carbon steels. Below is a list of materials most commonly used in Fixed-blade and Folded knives.

Fixed blade knives are most commonly made of 42oHC Steel, 154CM, S3oV, High-Carbon Steel, Cryogenic Heat Treatment and 13C26 Sandvik. All Steels with variable degrees of hardness and moldability.

Folding knives are more commonly made with materials such as ATS-55, Kin-2, BNG10, Co-special, M390, and CPM-2oCV. Folding knives are made of tool steel or stainless steel depending on the use intended for the knife. One may be harder and more resistant to corrosion than the other but everything is taken into consideration when making a blade.

Knife Tang For Fixed Blade

In a quality fixed blade knife, you will find a portion of the blade which extends into the handle is known as a knife’s tang. Remember you only need to check this feature in fixed blade knife. Durability, balance, and weight of a fixed blade knife depend on the tang. The manufacturer produces different types of tang blade for the different purpose. Most popular, effective and durable shape is full tang knife. This is when the blade extends to the end of the handle and covers the full length of the knife. A full tang knife has good construction, balance, and leverage. Some other tangs you can consider like partial tang, encapsulated tang skeletonized tang, tapered tang, extended tang.

Considering the Knife Handle

For proper holding and using a knife, you must need a perfect length handle. Also, sometimes it depends on your hand size. The Bigger size hand requires a long handle. The standard size of a handle of the medium size knife is 4 to 5.5 inches, both for folding and fixed blade. At present, there has made revolutionary changes in the knife handle material. If you need a waterproof, durable handle then you should buy an aluminum, high-quality plastic (Rubber, G10, Molded Plastic, Micarta), carbon fiber or metal handle knife but if you like the old or classic knife then find a premium quality wood, bone or Leather handle.

Handle design and structure also is an important issue for the tactical knife. Select a knife that has ergonomic finger grooves handle which is so effective for different circumstances. The grip of the handle should be non-slip and comfortable. You may not want that your knife could slip from your hand when you are using it. Select one that has non-slip grip or grip pattern with the body of the knife handle.

Blade Opening Mechanism of Folding Knife

• Manual Opening Knife:
• Single-Hand Opening Knife:
• Two-Hand Opening Knife:
• Automatic Opening Knife:
• Assisted Opening Knife:

The Locking Mechanism of Folding Knife 

• Lock-Back Folding Knife:
• Frame-Lock Folding Knife:
• Liner-Lock Folding Knife:

Carrying Portion or Pocket Clip of a Folding Knife

A folding knife has several ways to carry it when not in use, besides the sheath. A folding knife can also have a pocket clip. The pocket clip allows for easier storage and transfers from use and non-use. But exposes the knife to the outdoor elements causing the knife to rust, scratch or malfunction sooner than if it was in a carrying sheath. The sheath protects the knife from the outdoor elements the user doesn’t want the knife exposed to. This is a user decision as to the preference of which they prefer.

Choose a Best Tactical Knife for the Money

Budget is another major factor when you are going to buy something like a tactical knife. This is a critical option for any newbie. Most of the common people think that a higher budget ensures highest quality product. It is true but not always. If you have a detailed idea or a perfect buyer’s guide you can easily buy a good tactical knife under your budget. Let me present some recommended best tactical knives for the money.

Best Tactical Knife under $10

Don’t worry, if your budget is under $10, still can buy a tactical knife. Though it would be hard to find a good one you can use it for utility work. But remember, under $10 knives do not have strong steel blade, safety lock, and sheath. So you should not use it for any heavy task. Some of my recommended best tactical knives under $10.

Best Tactical Knife under $20

The twenty dollar is also a lower price range for a quality blade. With this budget, I wish you would get a durable handle but not a good edge retention blade. Almost all the knives under $10 to $20 are made in China. My suggestion is, try to increase your range and move to 30 dollars. Don’t worry still I have some recommended best tactical knives under $20.

Best Tactical Knife under $30

The $30 dollar budget is the most desirable price range for the newbies. You will get medium quality knives with this economical range. There is some popular knife manufactures those who use to make best tactical knives under $30.

Best Tactical Knife under $50

For most tactical fixed or folding knives, this is the ideal budget range. When you move over 30 dollars, you will get improved edge retention stainless steel blade, upgrade tactical blade design like partially serrated or full serrated, razor-sharp robust tip point, durable material for the ergonomic handle, heavy duty sheath with convenient carrying option. Overall a significantly finest design perfect tactical knife under $50.

Best Tactical Knife under $100

If you ask me what is your recommended price range then I will tell you this is the ideal budget range I use to consult with the others. With this budget you can easily purchase an ideal tactical knife which has comfortable ergonomic handle is made of a super quality component, long time edge retention and razor-sharp stainless steel blade that is designed for multiple purposes, good quality tactical sheath with a variety of facilities. Best tactical knives under $100 are capable to sustain around any types of hard condition. With this range of budget, only buy a knife from most reputed brands.

Best Tactical Knife under $200

Those who want a special knife for collection, gift or need to use the knife for any super hard task on a daily basis then you should go this budget range. These are my recommended best tactical knife under $200.

Some Trusted Best Tactical Knife Brand

In the knife industry, you will find hundreds of knife manufacturing company. If you select a famous knife manufacturing company rather than new or non-popular brand, the chances of picking the wrong product would be very less. This is why I am going to suggest you some most reputed tactical knife manufactures names as well as some of their best products.

Gerber Tactical Knife 
Ka-Bar Tactical Knife 
SOG Tactical Knife
MTECH USA Tactical Knife
Smith & Wesson Tactical Knife
Kershaw Tactical Knife
Zero Tolerance Tactical Knife
Spyderco Tactical Knife
Columbia River Tactical Knife
Cold Steel Tactical Knife

Knife Legality

The legality of the knife depends on where you are going to use or carry it. For the example, the United States of America has specific federal rules in various states about the length of the blade, it can be carried or concealed or open carried. Different countries have different types of rules regarding the knife length and carry option. Read more about the details from Wiki Knife Legality.

Final Verdict

Choosing the best tactical knife is choosing the knife that performs during its intended use. The knife that may be good for one will not be for another. With that in mind, the above points should help in determining and narrowing down the best tactical knife for the individual. Chose wisely and chose well. The tactical knife can serve you for the best job but also serve you for a very long time with the right choice and care.

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4 comments

  1. After reading your blog, especially this top tactical knife page, I can’t hold myself from giving you good feedback. You have written an excellent description of every knife. I can understand you have in-depth knowledge about the tactical knife. Though, I don’t find any extensive description about you.

  2. Roderick E. Stephens

    Hey, John, I would like to thank you first, due to your great best tactical knife site. There are lots of knife site on the web, but I have found only your site that is best for the tactical knife. I need a fixed blade tactical knife for different work, like hunting, survival, cutting wood, cooking, etc. I think I have found the best one. I am going to buy this KA-BAR Full Size USMC knife.

    One more thing, you have provided all the essential feature and product description of the blade which is really important for any knife hunter. Thanks to you, for these excellent reviews of top 10 good tactical knife and also your hard work. If someone asks me about the best knife site, I will recommend your this site.

  3. Thomas Haslett

    I am an ‍amateur trip traveler and hunter. I use to go for hunting in the forest or mountain area. Usually, have to carry a tactical knife for multiple purposes. But on my last trip, I broke my knife. So I need a new one and looking for it. I think I have got my master peace in this top 10 best tactical knives review. I believe you have written world’s tactical knives review both for the folding knife and fixed blade. Good job David.

    • Hey Thomas, thanks for visiting my blog and a lovely comment. I really like your comment; also it provides the feedback about my work.

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