If you are out hunting or camping in the wilderness, the bowie knife is almost one of the most indispensable survival basics. From clearing a specific site to put up a camp to being an ad hoc tool, the bowie knife is a multi-functional wonder addressing a wide range of necessities while you are out in the wild.
In fact, this is no new addition or innovation. Bowie knives are being used from the 19th century. They are named after Jim Bowie. An American, he had used this knife variant to kill someone during a family conflict. But the design of the Bowie knife has never been constant. With time and continuous changes in demand and necessities, this knife has seen some steady evolution. From the first ones used as early as the 1830s to the current ones, there are some basic differences. They don’ look like the original one anymore.
But one thing has remained constant. That is the extent of their versatility and the necessity they are in the wild. Of course, it isn’t a weapon anymore. But now, it is possible to get them in a wide range of sizes and depths. That can be both an advantage and a problem.
When a particular tool is so useful, it is but obvious that you will start looking for the best bowie knife available. But then the choice is not as simple as you think. There are many aspects to getting the most perfect knives. Different kinds of users may be looking for different specifics.
So we decided to make the task a lot simpler for you with a review of some of the best ones. The ones we chose figure prominently in any list of the best bowie knife. You can compare the features and then make a choice that suits your needs best.
1. Timber Rattler Western Outlaw Bowie Knife – With Full Tang
This is definitely one of the best bowie knives that you can choose. About 16.5 inches long with a blade that is over 11 inches, this one provides a beautiful combination of precision and power. Made of high-grade stainless steel, this knife is all about performance and quality. This knife comes with a full tang blade, enhancing the power as well as the safety of the knife.
It also comes equipped with a hardwood handle in classic grey and a leather sheath. So both in terms of look and performance, you have a clear winner in this case. It is strong, very sharps and helps in the smooth delivery of services.
Most importantly, it is also a value for money deal for customers. Given the strong quality and eye for details, it is an extremely affordable piece. It is comfortable to work with and easy to hold. The handle offers both a good grip and firm hold. Users love the feel and the price-service comparatives.
But some experts feel that there is some room for improvement in the blade. It has to be sharpened at very quick succession. Perhaps the manufacturers can look at this aspect and work on potential improvement. But overall, it is a great choice and a versatile piece.
- Large and powerful knife
- Firm grip enhances user comfort
- Affordable for hunters and campers across the board
- Good quality blade enhances the ability to execute better
- Full tan provides better service and security
- Versatile and can be comfortably used for a wide range of purposes enhancing user satisfaction
- However, the blade has to be sharpened quite often. This can be an irritant for some, especially if they are on an extended hunting or camping trip. But that said, the blade is still quite powerful and cuts smoothly when properly sharpened to the hilt.
2. Handmade Damascus Steel Bowie Knife – Exotic Wood Handle
The exotic Marandi wood handle is undeniably the most attractive feature of this bowie knife and plays a crucial role in making it one of the bowie knife. The Damascus Steel Bowie knife is also known for the brass spacers and the undeniably striking Damascus Steel Guard. The overall length of this knife is about 14 inches, and the blade length is 9 inches. So in the sheer dimension, it is slightly smaller than the Timberland, but that does not affect the performance quality at all.
The blade is made of an alloy of stainless steel and is specially hand forged. This enables a beautiful pattern that enhances both the looks and efficiency. The overall dimensions give it a distinct edge and sharpness that works to the advantage of anyone working with this knife.
The hard blade coupled with the firm grip also makes it a powerful little tool that is practically indispensable for any hunting or fishing trip. The sheath is made of handmade leather and surely adds an element understated class and quality to the whole deal.
The grip of this knife needs special mention. The Marandi wood handle does not just add to the looks but is also very practical and adds to its strength.
- The leather sheath of this bowie knife is quite satisfactory
- Most importantly it is reasonably priced and affordable for all types of customers.
- It can be put to multiple uses. It is practical for both hunting and home
- The edges are coarse and unfinished and need to be sharpened. The blade is rather rough.
- The wood finish is also softer than expected. As a result, the grip is not as firm as required. Potential slippages are a key worry in this case.
3. MOSSY OAK Survival Bowie Knife – Heavy Duty Nylon Sheath
This razor sharp stainless steel knife is again 15 inches long with a blade length 10 inches. So needless to mention, this is high on power and performance. The blade edges are serrated and rust resistant making it a perfect option for any type of chopping and clearing activity. Its dimensions make it an extremely versatile and sturdy piece that can be used for multiple purposes. It is both a survival essential and hunting necessity. It can be used comfortably indoors and outdoors too. This knife comes in handy for all types of industrial usage too.
One of the best bowie knives available today, this one is equipped with a full tang lending it support and safety. But despite the perfect dimensional details, it is a fairly lightweight option with distinct core strength and stability.
But there are two unique features in this bowie knife. The handle is made of TRP coated rubber. That makes it soft but does not compromise on the firm grip and comfortable hold. Moreover, it becomes rather easy to handle and lightweight and the non-slip design reduces the scope of an accident even further.
The nylon sheath further improves ease of use and the fire starters and sharpeners added to this make it a value buy with the bonus.
- Fire starters and sharpeners added to the knife
- The knife is lightweight, firm with a strong grip
- It is sharp with serrated edges enhancing the overall impact of this knife
- It is rust resistant and durable making it ideal for a wide range of outdoor and adventure activity
- Some reviews have criticized the sharpness of the blade and highlighted the need for repeated sharpening. However, given the price that it is available, it offers distinct value and quality.
4. MOSSY OAK Bowie Knife Wood Handle – Ideal for Detail Work
This item has earned Editors’ Choice for its outstanding quality and performance.
In terms of sheer dimension, this is a comparatively smaller bowie knife. The overall length is 14 inches with a blade length of 8.5 inches. So while in terms of power, there might be a missing link, this knife is high on precision. That means any type of detailing gets accentuated with this piece. So whether you are using it for skinning or cutting meat, you are assured to get a neat cut.
This one too comes with a full tang handle made of rosewood. This is both beautiful and practical. The rosewood is fairly hard with the distinct color and fragrance adding a hint of exotic to it. But there are more reasons why it is considered to be one of the best bowie knives in that price range under $20.
It also comes with a brass pommel and a non-slip grip. This adds both to the strength and efficiency of the knife. The rosewood makes the grip firm yet comfortable and provides excellent strength while executing a job.
The blade is corrosion resistant, durable and surprisingly sharp for the dimension it has. The sheath is made of genuine leather and also has a snap fastener. This makes the knife rather safe and easy to carry. This is an ideal option for any hunting or camping activity.
- Comfortable handle with a firm grip
- The blade needs polishing but works well
- An extremely affordable knife packed with features
- A practical and versatile option for both indoor as well as outdoor activities like hunting and camping
- Though the sheath is made of pure and genuine leather, it surely needs some work. The rivets appear to be weak and the placement is not very comfortable for some people with a specific body type. That apart most other features appear satisfactory given the cost.
5. Tactical Bowie Survival Hunting Knife – Lightweight and Solid
The Tactical bowie survival hunting knife is one heavy duty survival essential. This is a relatively smaller bowie knife ideal for combat. Jet black in color, it is both intimidating as well as imposing for the user.
The total length of this knife is about 12 inches, and the blade length is close to 7 inches. That surely makes it one of the shorter variants of Bowie knife but surely one of the best bowie knives available today.
Very high-grade stainless steel is made to create this knife and it is surely a match winner in terms of precision and performance. But in terms of power, the length does come a bit in the way of guaranteeing a superlative quality but not to a great extent.
For the price that you get it, this is broadly a decent knife with guaranteed excellence. It is nice and sharp and promises quality work every time. As some user review pointed out, this knife is rather good for peeling wood for tinder. So, in short, for any kind of fine cutting and chopping, this is the survival tool that you must go for. It promises to deliver on every given occasion.
It comes equipped with a hard composite sheath that has a belt buckle attached to it. The easy opening and fastening system adds more practical elements in its favor. This also makes carrying this knife for outdoor activities a lot simpler and convenient.
- Ideal for all types of precision cutting and fine detailing
- Lightweight and a solid quality knife
- Comfortable 5 inches knurled grip handle for superior quality
- This is much smaller in comparison to other Bowie knives that are available
- Some user reviews mentioned problems with the quality of the blade, but that is not a constant feature. However, when you buy it, you pay attention to this aspect too
Tips for Buying the Best Bowie Knife
So if you decide to but the best Bowie Knife, it is important to shortlist all the parameters you need. That alone will ensure that you are able to get the best quality product at a reasonable rate. Moreover, these parameters help you make the most appropriate choice. Based on your necessity, you can tweak the various elements to get the most compelling alternative available. So here is a quick rundown of some of the crucial features that you must look for while selecting your favorite Bowie knife. This will help you optimize the scale of benefits to the hilt.
Size Of The Blade: The best Bowie knife for you is the one that gives you precision and powerful cut. But for this, the size of the blade is the most important consideration. That alone decides how strong or how effective the cut will be. Different purposes have different needs. A comparatively smaller blade will help you get precise cuts, but if you need more power, you will have to go for longer blades. Cutting trees, chopping woods, clearing a campsite all need a relatively long blade. Therefore, Bowie knife with a longer blade size is the best bet for campers and hunters. But if you are planning a fishing trip, a smaller blade may be more appropriate. It will help in cleaning the skinning the fish better.
Blade Length: But the size of the blade is only a relative term. After all, a long blade is the hallmark of the best bowie knife. But there are differing blade lengths as per necessity. But the lower limit is capped at 5 inches. On average, Bowie knives are never shorter than that. After all, it is this length that gives them the power to perform better than average pocket knives. This is what ensures that it is able to cut through the wilderness and the meat with the same smooth feel. This gives the knife a super sharp precision with the requisite power needed.
Quality of Construction: But just the length will take you nowhere. It is important but without the right construction and make, it will fall flat. The tang is the most important element of construction competence. It is very important to buy a full tang bowie knife. The tang is that important shaft that connects the blade with a handle. This is what will stop the blade from breaking while at work. So it is useful for both support and safety while using these knives.
Material Used for Handle: You will often see that most bowie knife advertisements stress a lot on the material used. Be it stainless steel or carbon steel, most manufacturers make a big deal of the material they have used. This is because the material that they have used gives the necessary power and excellence to the best bowie knife for you. Traditionally, Carbon steel was used extensively. This maintained the sharpness and gave you a distinct edge. But increasingly stainless steel alloys are the popular choice given their reliability, excellence, and efficiency. So the choice is completely yours depending on your necessity.
Therefore, the best Bowie knife is the one with maximum advantage and one that can be put to multiple uses. It needs to be of the right size and length for maximum impact and power. Moreover, your objective has to be extremely clear. That is crucial for the best possible performance and a definitive edge. In case you are confused and unable to decide, just refer to our reviews and decide what the best bowie knife is for you.