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Editor'S Choice - 2020

Knives for fishing: types and subtleties of choice

In fishing, in addition to fishing rods, a fisherman needs a knife, and not some kind of kitchen or pen tool, but a special sharp tool that cuts fish and cuts food and cuts fishing line.

Main characteristics

Primitive people used stone knives, then our ancestors learned how to make steel blades. And today, living in an age of all kinds of technologies, we still use knives in many areas of our business. Fishing is one of them. Some people think that a kitchen knife is also suitable for day fishing. And if you look at it from the other side - An excellent fishing knife can be useful in everyday life, in the household.

The fishing knife is a blade of wide functionality. As an assistant, he is involved in fishing and cutting fish, making a fire, cutting food, and many other things. The material from which the knife is made should respond well to environments with high humidity.

Many people think that there are no universal knives. Each fisherman himself knows the tasks that he has to face while fishing, and takes with him several cutting objects for different purposes. Most often, a classic and cutting knife are included in the fishing kit, sometimes they also add a multitool.

Depending on the purpose, fishing knives can have a blade length of up to 15 cm and weigh about 250 g. But most often, fishermen manage with a smaller tool - a blade of about 12 cm and weighing 150 g. The plane of the blade in width is 2.5 -3.0 cm. Such a knife is considered to be optimally balanced, ergonomic, easily held in the hand, and produces cutting actions without much effort.


A wide variety of fishing knives rather complicates the choice than facilitates it. Having studied the requirements that are imposed on such tools, and comparing them with your tasks, you can make the right choice. We will understand in stages. First we find out what should be the material for making blades.


The steel blade of a fishing knife must have optimal hardness and be corrosion resistant. Recommended hardness endowed steel grades from 55 to 60 HRC. If the steel is softer, the cutting edge will often have to be sharpened. A blade that is too hard loses its flexibility and can break due to impact, and it is also difficult to sharpen it in field conditions. Corrosion resistance is affected by ligatures of different alloys. The more carbon compounds in the metal, the more it is susceptible to corrosion. To create blades using various options for alloys.

  • Carbon. They often have to be sharpened, but they easily respond to abrasives, in the field the process will not be difficult. The blade is quite flexible, it will not break. Steel is susceptible to corrosion and also absorbs organic matter, trapping odors on the blade.
  • Alloyed. They have a beautiful appearance, keep the sharpness of the blade longer, less susceptible to rust, they are easy to care for. Blades made of such steel cannot boast of particular sharpness.
  • Powder. The metal is very ductile, with a uniform structure. It contains the anti-corrosion properties of alloy steel and the convenient performance of carbon steel. Powder blades require special care, they are polished and treated with gun oil.
  • Damask. The metal has a hardness of 64 HRC, slightly superior to alloy steel. The cutting edge remains sharp for a long time. The blade is easy to sharpen, not crumble. The ideal cut is achieved due to the correct sharpening angle. The blades do not require special care, they look spectacular due to the characteristic pattern of steel.
  • Damask. Expensive products obtained by a complex manufacturing method. Steel is surprisingly strong and sharp, has good anti-corrosion properties.

Anglers prefer blades made of medium hard steel, they have good sharpness of the blade and protection against rust. Sharpening easily cures in extreme conditions.


The shape of the knife blade depends on the tasks for which it was made. It has a different cutting edge and a cutting angle.

  • Straight edge. The axis of the tip and the butt of such a product coincide.
  • Drop point. To reduce the weight of the knife, in addition to the main edge, a second cutting blade is produced. Or on the butt they do false.
  • Trailing point. For long blades, the upper edge is significantly overestimated.
  • Clip-point. It has a lowered upper edge, with a convenient cut for piercing.
  • Skinner. The blade is endowed with a curved blade with a direct butt.
  • Dagger. The two cutting edges converge at the tip of the blade, making perfect symmetry.

Some models for enhanced rigidity are produced with a dol (longitudinal recess). More often, fishermen choose blades with a supply sharpened at an angle of 40 to 50 degrees. This shape of the knife allows you to easily cut even large fish.


The handle of the cutting tool should fit snugly and comfortably in the hand of the fisherman. When choosing, you should pay attention to the material, to understand whether the tactile sensations are comfortable enough. Natural handles made of wood, leather or birch bark are more pleasant to the touch than synthetic materials. But when cutting fish, they absorb and retain a specific smell. In this case, the plastic and rubberized surface significantly benefit. In addition, synthetic materials are easier to care for.

If the choice is made in favor of plastic, you should pay attention to the sliding features of the material. The knife should not fall out of wet hands, even wearing rubber gloves. Metal handles make the tool heavier and freeze to the hand in winter. In winter, it is pleasant and warm to hold a wood product, but it requires constant care. Rubberized handles are convenient for fishing. Their minus can only be considered cracking in the cold.

Beautiful, comfortable and durable bone products. But they are more expensive than any other models. Nowadays, we have learned to make good polymer compositions, to which there are no complaints yet.


The scabbard is an important element in the design of the knife, they protect the blade from the effects of the external atmospheric environment and protect others from careless handling of a sharp blade. Perfectly executed scabbard emits a click when the blade enters. This snap lock prevents the knife from falling out. You should choose a material that will ensure reliable and long-term operation of the blade. The sheath is made from the following materials.

  • Leather. It looks expensive, noble and beautiful. When tanning the skin, substances are used that can react with the metal and cause corrosion. To avoid this phenomenon, covers are laid with wooden planks.
  • Kidex. Thermoplastic with a very beautiful structure, high strength. Connect the scabbard with grommets.
  • Cordura Polyurethane product with hydrophobic impregnation based on nylon fabric. Products are designed for every taste, as they have an infinite variety of colors.

The scabbard is equipped with additional straps that allow them to be mounted on the belt.


Fishing knives have different purposes, so they look different. Here are the most popular types of blades designed for fishing.

  • "Beluga". A large product made of steel grade 95X18 for cutting large fish. The knife has a guard that protects the hand from slipping. He is also endowed with sharpening on the butt, helping to bring down fish scales. The blade itself is narrower, with straight descents.
  • "Splinter". Universal knife model "fisherman-hunter", with low weight. Has a narrow blade - 1.8 cm, butt thickness - 2.4 mm. For the product, steel grade 100X13M is used. A small sharp blade with a short handle can gut fish of any size and cope with the game.
  • "Gudgeon". Lightweight reliable product of medium size, steel grade 95X18. The edge cut goes from the middle of the blade width. The pointed blade is designed for cutting fish of any weight. A maneuverable tool, performs any work accurately and quickly.
  • Shkerochny. The knife resembles Japanese products. Endowed with a heavy hilt, on the butt is a small hook for ripping open the belly. He easily cuts and cuts fish into pieces.
  • Folding. A universal knife with various blades and devices that hide in the handle, so the tool case is not needed. The model when folded is safe, takes up little space, it can be carried in your pocket.
  • Japanese fishing. This is a professional knife for cutting fish, it has excellent elasticity. It is used for any work with fish. Using the thinnest blade, you can easily separate the fillet from the skin.

Fishing knives are also classified as classic, chopping and loin.

  • Classical meets the purpose of "fisherman-hunter", therefore, is considered universal. It is often used by tourists on hikes.
  • Chopping the knife resembles an hatchet in appearance. The blade itself is not too long, has a thick butt. Suitable for cutting and planing fish.
  • Loin a knife with a narrowed, slightly curved blade is not only for gutting fish. With its help, meat is easily separated from the skin and bone.

Rating of the best models

Fishing knives are widely represented in the market by Finnish, Chinese, American manufacturers. Russia also offers its models to the domestic buyer. Among our suppliers, products of firms are especially popular. "Kizlyar", "Nerpa", "Northern Crown", "Zlatoust". From foreign companies, Finnish products are delivered to Russian markets Lisakki, Opinel, Roselli, Ahti. American - Buck, ColdSteel, Kershaw, and many others. Today you can buy a knife for every taste and from different brands.

How to choose?

Fishing knives are chosen for different purposes, sometimes whole sets are preferred to single models. They are good at fishing, hiking, on a picnic, even at home. A beautiful exclusive handmade knife is the best gift for any fisherman, especially if homemade leather or birch bark covers are included in the kit. There is an opinion that knives cannot be donated, but fishermen and hunters have their own views on these things.

Choosing a knife for himself, each fisherman himself knows what tasks he will perform. If you often have to gut and cut fish, buy sirloin models. For the usual help to the fisherman, the classic version is enough.

When choosing, pay attention to the following criteria.

  • Steel should be of medium hardness, then the knife will not break due to impact, and will not require constant sharpening.
  • You should not take carbon steel for fishing, such products rust from dampness.
  • The best parameters of the blade: thin, narrow, flexible, with a straight blade and convenient length.
  • The butt will have to be of moderate thickness or thin, otherwise the knife will be too heavy.
  • Slicer is better to have medium size. Small ones do not chop branches, and large ones are difficult to clean fish.
  • When choosing a handle, pay attention to comfortable holding it in your hand. It is important that it does not slip. And the material from which the handle is made did not soak and did not absorb odors.

In addition to these requirements, you should pay attention to high-quality blade attachment and aesthetic appearance of the product. A good knife will find its application in fishing and in any other activity of its owner.

See how to choose a fishing knife in the next video.

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