Looking for the right knife for ATV camping or hunting can be a little confusing if you don’t know understand all of the knife terminology. For camping and hunting there are two basic types of knifes, a fixed-blade and a folding-blade (pocket knife for example). But there is much more to understand to determine the right knife for you.
Fixed-blade knifes were the first knifes developed and are extremely durable because they’re usually just a solid piece of steel with a handle. Fixed-blade knifes are great for rugged work around the campsite and for field dressing a deer but aren’t very convenient for carrying around.
Folding-blade knifes, while not as durable as a fixed-blade, are very convenient and easy to carry because most will fit in your pocket. Like the name indicates the blade folds into the handle cutting the size of the knife in half and safely concealing the blade. Folding-blade knifes are great for quick easy tasks.
Both fixed-blade and folding-blade knifes are available in several different blade configurations.
The configuration of the blade often uses the following terms to refer to different sections of the blade:
- The Edge – The sharpened side of the blade. Serrated edges are those with a set of “teeth” designed to aid in cutting. A knife may be single-edge or double-edged.
- The Spine – The thickest and the heaviest section of the blade and runs the length of the blade. A wider and thicker spine makes the blade stronger. On a single-edge blade the spine is typically the back un-sharpened side of the blade.
- The Point – The very tip of the knife blade.
- The Belly – The curved part of the blade’s edge, designed for enhanced slicing. It may be a straight or serrated edge.
- The Grind – What makes a piece of steel into a sharp knife. It is the thinning of the edge to form a sharp cutting edge.
Knife blades come in several different sizes and shapes. The blade type determines what the knife was intended for. There are many types of blades, some of the most common types are:
- Straight-Back – Has a curved edge and a flat back.
- Clip-Point – The back of the blade curves concavely (clipped) to make the tip thinner and sharper. The bowie knife is an example of a clip-point blade.
- Drop-Point – The back of the blade curves convexly to make a stronger point.
- Tanto-Point – Has the point close to the spine thus producing a very strong point. There are quite a few different variations of the tanto-point blade.
- Spear-Point – A symmetrical blade with a spine that runs along the middle of the blade. The point is in line with the spine. Spear-points may be single-edged (with a false edge) or double-edged.
- Trailing-Point – Has the back of the blade curving upward with a large curve on the edge producing a larger cutting area or belly. These are common skinning blades.
Having a better understanding of knife terminology will help in selecting and identifying the knife that is right for you and your application. For more information visit CampingATV.com