Are you looking for the best bowie knife and can’t decide which one to get? We know how hard it can be to find the right one as there are so many to choose from. We have made things easier for you by selecting the top 10, and we used our experience as our basis.
But first, let’s define the bowie knife. What’s a Bowie Knife?
The first bowie knife was made by James Black in 1830. Today it is around 12 to 30 inches long, with the blade anywhere from 5 to 24 inches. However this is only a general description as today’s versions are available in many different styles.
Table of Contents
420HC Stainless steel
1095 Cro-Van steel
X50crmov15 Stainless steel
1095 Cro-Van steel
1085 carbon steel
look for a bowie knife that’s full tang or partial cable tang. Anything less than that is likely to snap in two, so it has to be of good quality.
this is a matter of personal preference. For camping and survival use, a 12 inch bowie knife will do, but 20 inch and longer are available.
it has to be carbon steel or stainless steel. Avoid low quality steel as they’ll rust.
get a bowie knife with nonslip handles so you don’t drop it at the most inopportune moments.
The SOG Knives & Tools SB1T-L Bowie Knife is equipped with a fixed, 7.5 inch blade with a sharp tip and solid construction.
It is designed to be an outdoor knife and ideal for camping, hiking and even tactical operations. SOG has manufactured several knives and this is one of the best that they have.
The blade has a clip point shape, and the blade is constructed from AUS-8 steel. The finish is black TiNi, providing an attractive and durable finish. Outdoor hunting knives will be exposed to the elements, so a quality finish is necessary. Another key feature of the SB1T-L Super SOG is its handle as it is comfortable and has a no slip grip.
The sheath is black leather, smooth, genuine and comfortable. A belt loop is included for your convenience, and it weighs 17.4 ounces. In comparison with other bowie knives, the SOG is lighter. The handle is 5.38 inches long so this might be a little big for those with small hands, but it is well made and nonslip.
The Cold Steel Natchez Bowie 01 Steel Knife comes with an 11 ¾ inch blade, and it is designed as a hunting knife. Also ideal for various outdoor activities, the knife is built for durability and solid grip.
Whether you’re cutting branches or setting up shelter, grip is crucial to get the right cut.
The handle is 5 3/8 inches long, which is just the right length for most users. This is not only convenient but comfortable also. Made of SK-5 high carbon steel, the knife is known for its sharpness, something you’ll need for outdoor use. At 24 ounces, the Natchez is also on the light side.
The features show just how effective the Natchez can be when used outdoors. There are a lot of good hunting knives, but the Natchez is one that matches up well when it comes to performance. The design and appearance are not fancy, but the knife delivers where it counts.
The Buck Heritage Frontiersman Micarta has a blade measuring 6.25 inches, and it has carved a reputation for being lightweight and portable, essential for the outdoors and hunting game.
The blade is constructed from 420HC steel, which gives the blade extra strength. Sporting a satin finish, the blade also has a comfortable grip.
The 5.5 inch handle combines grip with comfort, and its proportions are tailored to give maximum sharpness and force. The tip is sharp and combined with the handle, is both durable and versatile. Apart from the Micarta handle, the knife also has a guard to provide protection against potential injuries.
The Heritage Series comes with its own sheath, and that’s a good thing considering it has a unique design. Made from genuine leather, the blade and sheath fit together. There are some who say the sheath is hard to fit, but that’s usually only in the beginning. Over time the blade should fit it in nicely.
The knife weighs just 13 oz. and comes with the Buck Forever warranty, giving you an idea of how durable it is. This is a fixed blade that works great for outdoor use, whether as a hunting knife or for camping. One of the problems when it comes to hunting knives is they’re too heavy, but the Heritage Series won’t wear you down.
The Ka-Bar Becker BK9 Bowie Fixed Blade Knife comes with a 9 inch blade and the handle is 5 ¾ inches in length. In terms of proportion this is just right for tactical, military and outdoor use.
The BK9 weighs 1.05 lbs., so first time users will find it heavy. This really isn’t a major issue though especially if you’re used to carrying military knives.
The Ka-Bar knives were originally designed for military use, but now they’re available for consumers as well. The blade’s sharpness is suitable for camping and outdoor use, but it’s also capable of handling day to day activities like any other knife. Its fixed blade is made of 1095 Cro-Van steel for extra durability, and it has an ergonomic handle to boot. Add its ergonomic design and it’s the complete package.
There are a lot of outdoor hunting knives, but the BK9 stands out because of its quality and style. The 1095 Cro-Van steel makes a huge difference as far as performance durability are concerned, making it a good addition to your backpack.
Known for its distinct shape, the Muela Magnum Fixed Blade Knife is the one seasoned campers and outdoor adventurers bring along.
Made in Spain, the Muela is an all-purpose knife, made out of 440 chrome-vanadium-molybdenum steel, giving it durability and a level of reliability not present in other knives.
The crown stag handle is topped off by a brass guard for your protection. Quality wise the Muela sets a high standard as it is often used in films and by real life adventurers. The long blade and the handle also complement each other while power is transmitted from the handle to the blade.
A handcrafted sheath is included, adding the final touch to the package. Style wise the Muela is also striking. If it’s your first time to buy a Muela, you may be taken aback by its eight, but you’ll get used to it. The knife only feels heavy the first few times, but over time you’ll see the benefits that come with having it around.
With its 7 inch blade, the Ka-Bar US Marine Corps knife is as versatile as they come. Made of 1095 Cro-van steel, the knife is suitable for hunting, camping, and various tactical operations while you’re outdoors.
The name alone makes clear that it is good enough for military use, so if it’s good enough for the Marine Corps it’s good enough for you.
The handle is a bit short compared to the 7 inch blade, but it is not a big problem as the handle is well-balanced. Balance and strength are very important for hunting and outdoor knives, so this is really a plus. The knife is manufactured in the US and meets the highest standards when it comes to durability and quality.
Some may think that a Marine Corps hunting knife may be too much, but if you’re into outdoor adventures this is exactly what you need. The last thing you need is a hunting knife that falters while you’re in the wilderness, but the Ka-Bar is one that’s built to last. Quality wise, it is hard to beat.
This is a full tang blade so strength won’t be an issue. Construction wise this knife is built for a wide array of activities like cutting, camping, hiking, survival, tactical and so on. The blade is not just durable but comes with anti-corrosion coating so you don’t have to worry about how it’s used.
The knife weighs 22.4 ounces, making it a little heavier than the typical bowie knife. But this is not a major issue, and the quality more than compensates for it. The knife has a limited lifetime warranty and has quality Kraton handle. While it isn’t the lightest bowie knife, the Marine Raider is going to get it done.
The Ka-Bar Heavy Bowie Knife has a 9 inch blade and a 5 ¼ inch long handle, and this design ensures power and force are optimized.
The blade is constructed out of 1085 carbon steel, and its edge is set at an angle of 20 degrees. What this means is you get a high quality, very sharp blade that is able to maintain this level even with extended use.
As the name makes clear, this is a large and heavy knife meant for camping, hunting and military use. Design wise, the knife does look fit for military use and the blade size is indicative of what it is capable of. If you need a heavy duty knife that can do more than just kitchen duties, this is the bowie Ka-Bar for you.
The Timber Rattler Western Outlaw Bowie Knife is a good example of a quality bowie knife, ideal for outdoor use, camping, hunting and other activities.
The full tang blade is 11 3/8" long and is 100% stainless steel. Sharp and solid, the knife is suitable for a wide range of activities whether you’re a new camper or long time outdoor enthusiast.
The handle is built out of hardwood, and its grey black handle has beautiful patterns that make it attractive and nonslip. And if you’re worried because it’s made of wood, no need to be as it has been specially treated so it won’t shrink or swell even when exposed to the elements.
The knife comes with a guard to prevent injury, and its sheath is made of genuine leather. The sheath provides a nice cover, but in addition to that, its full tang blade is what gives it extra strength and stability. Because the blade is full tang, you don’t have to worry about it snapping or flying off even when you apply a lot of force.
The Gerber Winchester Large Bowie Knife is built for use in the home as well as outdoor adventures. It is not full tang, but the construction is solid.
The blade is sharp and doesn’t need as much sharpening as other knives, very convenient and practical. If you spend time hunting or outdoors, a small knife won’t do.
Most of those who buy this knife will use it outdoors, and its heavy duty design is just right for this. Whether you’re cutting branches, skinning or cutting tough materials, the knife is capable of meeting your demands. If you’re looking for a military grade knife, then the Winchester is a safe bet.
If you are into gardening or DIY, you’re going to find the Winchester bowie knife an effective solution. However, the knife is more than that as it’s capable of hunting and cutting in ways that other knives cannot match. If you’re looking for a new hunting knife, this is as good an option as any.
Bowie knives have a lot of uses, but you’ll only get the most out of if the quality is good. With the information presented in these reviews you now have greater insights on what makes for high quality bowie knives.
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A passionate blogger! Editor at Chooserly, and a regular author at HuffingtonPost, LifeHacker & Forbes!