Hunting Knives Features
A hunting knife is an essential tool for all hunters regardless the game they are behind of; after all, once you shoot an animal, no matters if it's a rabbit, a deer or a wild pig, you'll need to field dress it and it's impossible to do so without a good hunting knife.
But, what does make of a knife a hunting one? Well, there are many features to consider but the main one is blade design and endurance.
A conventional home knife or a butcher knife is designed to be used within a controlled, indoors environment, with certain conditions and without exposure to elements, thus the blade is thinner and less durable than a hunting knife; furthermore, at home or at the butcher shop there's a chance to have a specialized knife for each need but that's not possible on the field where a multipurpose knife is mandatory.
On this regard, hunting knives blades are thicker and bigger than conventional knives, in addition their shape may have different contours in order to be used on different tasks as required; making of it an "all in one blade".
Most of hunting knives combine a curved section on the tip with a straight blade design on the back; this way the tip may be used to skin a game while the blade body is useful to slice and cut.
In some models even a serrated blade section may be found near the handle, something useful to cut through ribs and small bones.
Blade tip is also a distinctive feature. Hunting knives may have clip point or drop point. Clip point blades are more versatile and may be used to tasks other than field dressing, so cutting ropes, small tree branches is possible with this type, so it will be a great choice to combine on the same tool a hunting and camping knife.
Meanwhile drop point blades are designed for a more specific task and rarely may be used to something else than skinning and field dress a game.
Overall and despite point design, hunting knives blades tend to be stronger, larger and thicker than conventional ones, in addition material is more durable and resistant to face not only its job but also outdoors conditions.
On the other hand, hunting knives handles are more robust and provide best grip to be used safely on the field where moist, snow, rain and all kind of humidity may be present.
Regarding size, hunting knives have plenty of options, each one adapted for a particular game; in fact a small game or waterfowl hunter will need something completely different regarding size than a deer or elk hunter. In case you hunt different games, a good option is a middle sized knife or a knives set, with different sizes, what's best depends upon your personal preferences.
Same may be said about choosing between folding or fixed blade. Even when lighter and easy to carry on, folding blades are less durable, more risky (because the blade may close on your hands) and overall less versatile than fixed blades. However fixed blades might be considered less convenient due to their size, thus the best choice will depend upon your preferences and how often you hunt.
Regular hunters probably will choose a heavier, more durable, fixed blade while those hunting time to time perhaps prefer something lighter and more convenient to carry on.
Finally it's mandatory to say that regardless blade shape and design as well handle features, the most important characteristic of a hunting knife is quality. Knives produced by serious, well reputed manufacturers usually do best than low cost, unknown quality knives.
Thus, since a hunting knife is not only a tool but also an investment, take your time to search about different brands and characteristics in order to find the model that best fits your needs.