Fixed Blade Recommendation


January 22, 2008, 09:21 PM

Fixed blade, with, at most, a minimal guard or quillion. No guard is OK.

3"-4" blade length.

Single blade, blade shape and profile are flexible.

Stainless steel.

Must come with a sheath.

Must be able to stand up to decent use as a survival/multipurpose tool.

Cost of $50 and under.

The deal is that my wife does martial arts and needs a "live blade" for testing and demos, but she doesn't want to use the really nice one I got her because, well, it's really nice. :rolleyes: She wants something she can toss in her bag with her sweaty workout clothes and not worry about it rusting or being stolen.

Before we go any further, don't worry. I know that 'stainless steel' is just corrosion resistant. We won't let it go that far.

Anyway. I figure that if we're spending money, we might as well get something that can double as a good 'trunk knife', since that's where this thing is gonna live- her car trunk.

Any ideas? And yes, the $50 limit is pretty firm. Her only criteria are listed above, and if I left the choice up to her, she'd just buy the first thing she saw at Wal-Mart. So, the "let her choose" crowd (of which I am a proud member) can relax- she told me to get her something, and she doesn't care what it is.


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Joe Demko
January 22, 2008, 09:36 PM
Buck Vanguard with rubberized handle. ( You should be able to get this for right around your target price. They're nice little knives and more useful than some of the more outre tactical knives I've seen.

January 22, 2008, 10:24 PM
Live blade?

What sort of cutting will it do? Will it be used for thrusts? What style is she practicing?

January 22, 2008, 10:31 PM
Okay, so I've developed a prejudice.

On this page here ( you will find a wide selection of simple, robust, sharp-as-the-dickens, versatile knives.

I have this one. I was so impressed, I bought another four.
#2000. This is the Swedish version of a survival knife. It has a wide blade with a dramatic grind. The blade is .098" thick and a bit over 4 1/2" long. The handle is also about 4 1/2". Handle and sheath are military green and gray plastic. The center portion of the handle is slightly soft, and has a textured surface for improved grip. The weight of the knife and sheath is just under 5 ounces. Stainless steel, $ 31.50.

I have this as well. Several, in fact. Other colors available.
#760-MG; This is the basic knife in military green. I'm told that it is the issue knife for the Swedish Army. It has a stainless blade about 4 1/8" (105 mm) long and .079" thick. The solid plastic handle has a guard to keep your fingers off the edge. The sheath will work with either right or left handed carry. The knife and sheath weigh 3 1/2 ounces. $11.

On that same page:
#746-G. This is an all-purpose belt knife with a 4" stainless steel blade .098" thick. I like the feel of these very much, and think they would make great hunting, camping or utility knives for those who do not insist on traditional materials. The knife and sheath weigh about 4 1/4 ounces. $12.

Depending on how committed you are to having a nice sheath, you could step up a bit.

Your basic Mora knife, with leather sheath:
#137. Here's an upscale version. It's the basic Mora knife made by Frosts, with an unpainted handle and a leather sheath. For those with smaller hands it works better than the #22 shown below, yet has a similar traditional style. Besides being a fine all purpose knife, this would complement any period (or modern) garb. The laminated carbon steel blade is about 3 7/8" (97 mm) long, 11/16" (17.5 mm) wide, and about .105" (2.7 mm) thick. The handle is unfinished birch which can be stained and finished as you wish, or just used as it comes. The sheath has an attractive stamped design. The weight of the knife and sheath is just under 3 ounces. $28.

Those are all Swedish.

He has some nice ones in his Finnish catalog as well:

I have a couple like this:
This is the same no-frills utility puukko in a kalevala style flat sheath.
#6316-o, 3 7/8" (10 cm) stainless blade, $30.

He doesn't carry the Marttiini line, and I haven't asked why. They're an excellent knife, available in different sizes, having stainless blades and rubberized handles.

From this page here (
I have five or six of these in various blade sizes and styles:
Marttiini Bowie 9 1/2" overall. 4 7/8" 420 stainless clip point blade. Black textured polymer handle with cast metal finger guard. Black leather belt sheath.
(Actually, the Marttiini prices are better over here ( And they show all the blade styles that I have.)

In general, the ones I have found most usable are the first one pictured (the #2000 at the top) and the last ones pictured (the Marttiinis). They have a softer, textured grip, which assures a better hold. I keep one of the Swedish (Mora) knives in the Jeep, one in the tool box, three in my camp kitchen box.

I have great faith in these little gems.

January 22, 2008, 10:43 PM
She's practicing Tang Soo Do. It is not weapons-based, but has a (fairly minimal) weapons component, mostly forms/katas. The style calls for thrusts as well as cuts. I know they do some tamishigiri-type cutting with the sword, but I don't think they do much with the knife.

They use dummy blades for most everything (and anything with a partner), but the higher-level forms specify a live blade.


January 22, 2008, 10:58 PM
Um- is this for forms strictly?

If so, you might want a real but unsharpened knife, not good sharp Swedish steel.

January 22, 2008, 11:06 PM
I'm not sure if unsharpened would work. I mean, for forms it certainly would. But I think they do some sort of cutting, albeit infrequently. I'll check.


January 22, 2008, 11:17 PM
For under $50 you can get a K-bar in a multitude of colors and styles. Also in different lengths. You can get then with a leather or plastic sheath. You can also get a real leather wrapped handled one or a plastic handle.

Or if you really shop around you can get a Glock field knife for about $30. I have one of these as my truck knife. Good blade, plastic handle and sheath, and has a coating similar to the glock slide. The sheath is a solid design with a very positive retention clip for the knife. It can easily be unsheathed quickly with one hand also. They are available in green, tan and black. Mine hasnt rusted yet. Ill stick with these for heavy duty field use. They also are available with or without a very aggressive sawback, and I think that you can get serrated blades as well. I dont remember the blade length but its pretty long, and slimmer than a K-Bar blade with about the same thickness. The guard is very minimal on these.

Neither one of these is stainless though. Sorry.

January 23, 2008, 02:00 AM
How about a Gerber Big Rock camp knife?
It is in the $30-$35 range.

January 23, 2008, 02:29 AM
I wouldn't cross the street to pee on. . .well as much as I loathe to do so, this task is the perfect job for a Cold Steel blade.

Cheap? Yes.
Stainless? There's probably the minimum amount of carbon one can get away with.
Looks and feels like a fighter and can probably be put to some field use? Yeah, but they are what they are.

Cold Steel Kobun ~$25.00 & 5.5" blade:

Cold Steel Canadian Special ~$12.00 & 4.0" blade:

Cold Steel Roach Belly ~$12.00 & 4.5 " blade:

Cheap enough to use, lose and abuse. All fit the specs.

Pax Jordana
January 23, 2008, 09:58 AM
I've had my eye on one of these but have not yet had adequate excuse to get one. Perhaps you'd enjoy it.

January 23, 2008, 11:21 AM
I have the gerber gator folder, which is a great knife.

I imagine the fixed form is just as good:

$38 online:

January 23, 2008, 03:13 PM
The Kobun would actually blend in nicely with all of the other 'tanto' style knives the other practitioners use. I'm not a huge Cold Steel fan, but that has less to do with their quality than it does with Lynn Thompson's inane blathering.

The gerber looks good, too.


January 26, 2008, 01:40 PM
CRKT First Strike is nice... MSRP ranges from 45-70 but you can find on evil-bay for much cheaper (~20-25). nice, authentic looking cord wrap might be nice for any competition/belt testing.
here (

or, the CRKT hissatsu. gonna be on the higher end of the $50. gotta hunt to find it ~30-50. (and the desert tan seems less desirable and therefore much cheaper)
here (

lastly, there's the CRKT Dragon which is a wicked fighter. blade is 4.5", not sure if that's too long. found one here for $39.99:here (

As you can guess, i'm a huge fan of all things CRKT. nice thing is that in if it comes down to it, you can trust them with your life.

January 26, 2008, 09:18 PM
Go for something that can't collect blood in the handle. I recommend seal pup, they are excellent. I think it's all about the handle not being able to break or rust around the blade.

January 26, 2008, 09:45 PM
In this price range the first thing that is skimped on is the sheath. Keep that in mind.

January 26, 2008, 10:15 PM
I have a cold steel kobun, but it's made from carbon V. Extremely sharp....

January 26, 2008, 11:55 PM
Traditional me and all...

Case Bird & Trout Knife.
These are proven as being workhorses and some persons I know used them in military work ...shall we say...blending in...

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