Every prepper needs to know how to choose a knife for an SHTF situation. After all, this is one of the most crucial self-defense tools a person can carry – especially in a forest.
However, what many people don’t know is what to look for when buying one of these knives. After all, not all knives are made equally, and some are better than others – especially for certain situations.
Regardless of your survival needs, there are a few basic features you can look for that will set your knife apart. And, if you expect to get one that will be as effective and long-lasting as possible, you’ll need to know…
How To Choose A Knife For When SHTF
…However, it’s not what you think. Just because a knife is large doesn’t mean it’s effective or that it will meet your specific survival needs. For instance, a huge knife is going to be big and bulky, and will likely weigh you down. Not to mention, it likely won’t be able to do any detail-work that is often a requirement in emergency situations.
On the other hand, a super compact knife likely won’t be able to have the precision and durability to handle larger tasks like chopping wood.
Make the most of your situation by selecting a medium-size knife. This way, you get both the intricacy and durability in one blade.
The Butt Should Be Firm
The blade and handle of the knife garner the majority of the attention. However, the butt of the knife (also known as the pommel) is also very important. The pommel is useful for hammering and tenderizing meat. And you’ll want a strong pommel, because this generally equates to a much better and longer lasting survival knife in the long-run.
However, like anything else, not all pommels are made for the same purposes. Avoid round and hooked ones, since these typically don’t work well for hammering.
The Blade Should Be Fixed
Certain knives have a fixed blade, while others have a blade that can move around. However, when it comes to a survival situation, fixed blades tend to work far better than their movable counterparts. That’s because they tend to fare far better when it comes to reliability, safety, and durability.
Folder knives may be compact, but they typically can’t compare. After all, if the joint in the folder knife becomes loose, it won’t work nearly as well. And do you really want to take the chance?
The Tip Should Be Sharp
Sharp tips are incredibly important, especially in the wilderness. That’s because they work extremely well for hunting an animal, and do equally well for skinning it afterward. Sharp tips are also essential for descaling fish.
All in all, it’s safe to say that a knife with a sharp tip is the best way to go in a survival situation.
It Should Have A Full Coverage Tang
Essentially, the “tang” is the bridge between the knife’s handle and the blade. Therefore, a “full coverage tang” means that both the handle and the blade are made with the same piece of metal.
Full-tang knives tend to be much stronger and more substantial than their half-tang and rat-tail counterparts. Not to mention, partial-tang knives can loosen, and the handle can begin to wiggle apart from the knife. This can make it extremely dangerous to use.
Full coverage tangs not only help ensure your safety, but they also ensure the strength and durability of the knife. Obviously, one piece of metal running throughout is going to be a better option than two (or more) metal pieces. Plus, if the scales come off the handle, you can always wrap paracord around it to make a new, comfortable grip.