the machete


November 14, 2010, 01:04 AM
a tool of day to day work,survival and gardening.what are all the applications this versatile tool can be used for?

what is your favorite kind of machete for survival and if need be self defense?

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November 14, 2010, 03:00 PM
I'm more of a kukri guy. It's like a machete crossed with a hatched crossed with a sword, given steroids from a young age.

The list of what they can't be used for is much shorter than what they can.

My girlfriend mentions as she reads over my shoulder that they are hard to carry in your pocket, though.

November 14, 2010, 03:16 PM
I like a standard 18" GI machete. I have several old WWII GI, and a Collins or two.
A thin sharp machete blade will cut small saplings and brush with one swing, where a thicker blade like a Kuk or Bowie style will not and it takes more work.

Next to that, a WWII LC-14-B Woodsman Pal is the most useful tool I have for fall clean-up, etc.
The brush hook & full handguard is a god send!

If I want to chop bigger tree's, I'd use an ax or a chainsaw.


November 14, 2010, 04:24 PM
Plenty out there. Take a look at previous machete threads here for more information.

Barteaux, Martindale, Tramotina are the classic top of the line. I need to get a Condor to try.

November 14, 2010, 04:30 PM
yes the kukri is awesome, however a good kukri cost 60$-300$

carbon spring steel machetes cost 10$-25$.

how about the bolo type machetes?
they are heavier at the tip, so a 16inch bolo could be as powerfull for hacking as a standard 23inch machete.

November 15, 2010, 02:43 PM
If you look to third-world countries where the folks who live and work there actually use machetes for real work?

The straight blade and curved tip common to the U.S. GI design is most often the tool of choice.

For one reason, if you are a field worker, it is easy to sharpen a straight blade with a rusty file or a flat rock, if that's all you can afford to sharpen it with.


November 15, 2010, 03:10 PM
If I'm just carrying but not cutting trail in the jungle, an 18" Tramontina.

If I am actually cutting through jungle, a 30" Tramontina.

November 15, 2010, 03:18 PM
I have two Collins Legitimus both made in Guatemala. Best tool for the work it was designed for. I am not one for whacking and chopping with a conventional knife...nor would I choose to cut a 10" log with a machete...axe.

If off in the wilderness, I'd want a knife, an axe, and a machete.

November 15, 2010, 03:36 PM
I generally prefer the Tramontina Cane Machete. I like the hook on the end for pulling brush. I could use it for defense, but like a firearm for protection.

November 15, 2010, 04:03 PM
Back when I had a yard full of oleanders, I used a machete to trip the fronts to sharp lines. I guess I could have bought a trimmer, but, like it was said, machetes are so cheap for what they are useful for.

November 15, 2010, 11:08 PM
I have used a 18 inch Tramontina for over 20 years.

November 16, 2010, 01:09 AM
Jeff Randall (the guy behind ESEE knives) has said openly (on Bladeforums, at least) that he would choose a machete over anything else (to include, in his own words, his own ESEE knives, lol) in a survival situation. I am not the guys fanboy or anything, but he has forgotten more about woodcraft than I will ever know so I will listen to him. There are tons of options for machetes. For general work and woods use, one that I have used but do not own is the Woodsmans Pal. My old man uses one, and he swears by it as do several others.

I personally at this time only own a cheapo Cold Steel Kukri, and you know, it has been a pretty good tool for me. In screwing around, I have chopped through a couple of 2x4's with it easily enough, and in actual work, I mowed down my stupid out of control rose bushes (which I inherited when I bought this place and hate).

Also, I love my parenthesis, but man did I use them a lot in this post. Word.

November 18, 2010, 05:04 PM
I have had a Collins 14 inch(coconut machete?) since the early '70's with a leather sheath that I just love. It is the right length and heft for the brush clearing I do.

November 30, 2010, 09:37 AM
Walmart. $6.95. Use it, abuse it, when its done, grind it sharp and start over again...

I'll make my own machetes one day, but I'm gonna need some bigger stock.

November 30, 2010, 10:30 AM
I tend to prefer shorter machetes overall. I have several 12" Ontario machetes scattered around in vehicles for utility use. I like the Kabar cutlass machete and just picked up a Condor Golok (14" blade) to try out. The Condor has a great deal of potential for filling my needs, but have yet to try it out. I need a machete from time to time in my job and try to keep one in each of my field vehicles so I don't have to think about whether or not I have one with me on the road or at a job site. My next will probably be a moderate sized Kukri from Himalayian Imports to be used primarily as a chopper.

The problem with machetes (for me) is that the sheaths are generally poorly made. But a good sheath will often cost more than the machete. There is a market out there for cost effective versatile sheaths for machetes that protect the blade and allow for easy carry in the outdoors.

November 30, 2010, 01:23 PM
These work quite well.
Only downside is, they don't have a belt loop as they only have a wire hanger to hook on a GI pistol belt.


November 30, 2010, 01:34 PM
I use a Cold Steel Kukri machete that has cleared roads, trimmed branches, chopped ice from equipment, rowed a boat (not kidding), killed snakes, and other practical uses. It's been resharpened more times than I can remember, and is on its 4th coat of Krylon.

It is one of the few bladed objects I would ever trust my life to, and have. My only complaint is that the sheath fell apart some time ago; a good replacement is in order. :)

December 7, 2010, 05:16 PM

December 7, 2010, 06:21 PM
I use a WWII vintage Woodsman's Pal.

December 8, 2010, 12:31 AM
i just ordered the ESEE Junglas. a lot of people seem to think of it as a chopper, but (i believe) it was designed to be more of a machete. i know it's not what comes to mind, when the word "machete" is uttered, but that's what i bought it for. we'll see how it works out :)

December 8, 2010, 04:22 AM
what's the best way to sharpen a machete?

December 8, 2010, 07:00 AM
It is just a big knife that needs a wider angle on the bevel so you sharpen just like any big knife.

December 8, 2010, 07:13 AM
what's the best way to sharpen a machete?

I use a Smith's tool and knife sharpener available at wally world for about $10. It has two carbide plates that form a "V" at about 25 to 30 degrees. Not a polished edge, but it works quickly. Great for touching up the edge in the field when you smack to hell out of a rock or a metal T-post.

December 8, 2010, 08:51 PM
I use an 8 inch File.

December 10, 2010, 04:46 AM

watch the video demo... i love mine! buy the sheath too...

December 10, 2010, 02:08 PM
I go mountain climbing quite a bit and to cut through brush my favorite is still my Cold Steel Kukri Machete.

My friend owns their Panga machete and this thing CUTS. I've seen him go through some pretty thick brush in one swipe with this sucker.

And the best thing about these are that they're cheap, so you can bend or chip them (if you're capable of that) or even lose them and it's no sweat what-so-ever.

December 16, 2010, 11:19 AM
if you want a good browse of machete shapes and styles has alot of stuff to look at altho i dunno if id buy from them they are a bit pricy most people said they got their Cold Steel kukri for $20 these guys want alittle more and then plus shipping i assume it will top 30$ but still a great place to look at blade types

i really like machetes, they are cheap and effective and easy to sharpen with a cheap 5 handheld sharpener like this

Idaho Dana
December 18, 2010, 12:18 PM
I have an old WWII vintage medic's machette. It has a short blade but is a full 1/4 inch thick or more. It has a rounded bolo type blade tip which is sharp about
4 inches back from the tip.
I have found it to be very useful for almost every kind of camp chore and ocassionally pruning back vines around my house. I was given the machette by
my ex-father in law who was issued it while serving in the Marines in Korea. He didn't have the original heavy leather sheath but I was able to find a suitable one on ebay.

December 19, 2010, 11:30 AM
After being a professional forester for over 30 years, I can safely say that a Woodmans Pal (WP) is the finest cutting instrument I have ever used in the woods. It does everything a machette will do only better. In addition, the WP's weight is such that you can also use it as a hammer, and, it also has a brush hook, handle guard, and further, it is much easier to sharpen than a regular machette. If you have never used a WP, then you don't know what you're missing and you'll throw rocks at a regualr machette, IMHO.


December 19, 2010, 02:49 PM
+1 For the Ghurka machete by Cold Steel.

I love mine and swear by it.

December 19, 2010, 03:07 PM
For the Mayan culture in Central America, the machete is the main tool for everything, like a second hand.
For defensive purposes, a blow with the flat side id usually a dissuasive mean to discourage further annoyance or attack from animal or kin, if things get serious the sharp edge comes into play.

The effect is devastating, and by the way yes the machete used by the marines is over there the most popular choice.

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