15.1.13

Folder or sheath ???? convince me??

OK peeps I have a dilemma - forget carving a house out of wood or doing unarmed combat with a grizzly bear for a moment, can anyone convince me that a sheath knife is more useful in the field than a pocket knife??

If I have a axe and a saw what use is a sheath knife?? The two woodworking tools can do everything I need to process wood for 99% of my needs - they can be brought to bear on food prep too if needs be ................. so if a pocket knifes role isn't the processing of wood for the fire what is it??

Is it reduced to a cutter of string and peeler of spuds? If so why bother with a inconvenient to carry sheath knife and why not settle for a folder?/

I've seen ghillies grollac deer with a opinel - Randalph Fiennes is known to have said the only cutting one really needs in the wild is a good swiss army knife - for a long time Survivorman got by just fine with a multitool .........................and lets not forget the bush tucker man, a pocket knife and a golok seemed to meet his needs!!

So dear reader - oh yee of thee expensive hand made sheath knife, tell me, enlighten me as to why I need a sheath knife??

10 comments:

Lee said...

Why carry a sheath knife when you are carrying a bunch of other tools? A big dilemma. Possibly you could decide to reduce your kit down and try new things or new ways of working with the knife. Maybe the knife will sharpen your skills or reintroduce a level of difficulty and a challenge.

Skinning animals the pocket knife would tend to gunk up and get inside the mechanism. Not as hygenic.

In the winter, it may be unadvisable to carry tools that need a lot of fine motor skills to work if you get into trouble (example would be making feather sticks) - just an idea.

Not really a good idea to attach a pocket knife to the end of a spear for fishing.

Lastly, I can think about how you carry around your tools. If you get to a camp site and then go for a bit of a walk, you will probably leave your pack and your axe/saw. Having a fixed bladed knife might be a level of security, if you get lost or break a leg. You can do a lot with just the knife.


Anonymous said...

There is no "better", but instead look for "suitable". I have some brandless, but very good viking style knife, not too long for nature and Victorinox military issue which is awesome for everything else.

Pickles said...

I use a fixed blade for cleaning game. I'd rather not use a folder simply because I don't want blood and gunk up in the innards of the knife. It's hard to clean, yeah? I've also had folding knives fail doing the most mundane tasks (Opinel failed while carving, SAK handle broke by being dropped).

All that said, I don't see why anyone needs to pay more than $75 for a knife, unless you are a collector or REALLY like the design of the knife. I'd hate to go out into the woods with a knife I paid $250 for and then lose it on accident... Knives should be stout workhorses you are willing to lose.

Survivall said...

interesting COMMENTS THANKS so far ..........

Ross Gilmore said...

I find little use for expensive, overly designed knives. However, I prefer a fixed blade knife (Mora #2). The reason is that it is lighter than a folder; it still fits in my pocket; it is easier to work with; and it's easier to keep it clean and in working order.

While a lot can be done with an axe, sometimes the knife is the best tool for the job, woodworking or otherwise. In such cases, I would much prefer to be working with a fixed blade knife than a folder.

Perkunas said...

IF, IF you have an axe or machete or any othe big sturdy blade with you, then why would you not get along just fine with "just" a folding knife. Ive gone hunting, fishing, hiking, for short trips and perioids with just victorinox folding knife, as well as without an axe BUT for more serious outdoor things i highly recommend to take a fixed blade with you, or an axe. I mean, its natural that if youre in our government owne national parks, that theres pre-made firewood so you dotn need real knife, nor an axe, to get a fire going but on the otherhand if youre doing a hike in area where you can and will do shelters, prep wood more etc, then you might truely need an real knife.

Anonymous said...

I find knives overall to be very handy tools for doing a lot of different tasks. You can use an axe and saw for a lot, but I think many things are more conveniently done with a knife, which need not cost much, weigh much or take up too much space.

As someone once said, "a folding knife is already broken". This, along with Mors Kochanski's account of getting away from folding knives after having them close on his fingers too many times, is reason enough for me personally to use a fixed-blade instead for most knife tasks (though I do use an SAK for the occasional light and fine task).

I figure, if I'm going to carry a knife, why not carry one that can be used for a broader range of tasks (i.e. fixed blade because of it's strength). I also find them easier to deal with in the winter with gloves/mittens on, easier to clean and just nicer overall. :)

Just my opinion. The other commenters have great points, too.

weekendwoodsman (OpenID not working)

Mike said...

I mix between a clasp knife and the new style 3.2mm mora's, which are much better and preferring a plastic handle to wood which is easier to clean and keep clean. 99% of the time I use my clasp knife though.

Survivall said...

some GREAT POINTS coming to the fore here - really enjoying reading your views guys

Stumpy said...


I have used a Made in USA Old Timer stockman pocket knife to clean Deer, Elk, small game, upland game,&fish, also to make shavings for a fire, prepare a meal,and most anything else a folder will do. I have never batoned wood, never had a need to in over 60 years, so I dont abuse my knife. It is just a good all round knife