Saturday, August 31, 2013

Blades for Survival.

My Father taught me that I should always choose the right tool made for the job in hand, and he was right. Knives were not originally or traditionally made to cut down trees or to saw off limbs or to split wood. These tasks were reserved for the axe. Do you remember this old saying referring to survival tools; the knife, the axe and the gun ? This was true 300 years ago, and it is still true today, though you could use a self-bow in place of the gun.
The hunting knife was designed to skin and butcher game. It was also used to dispatch game and be used in self-defence. Its blade would be somewhere between 8 and 12 inches long, and it was rarely a heavy knife. In the 18th century the most common hunting knife used by woodsmen & woodland Indians alike were butcher blades. However, it was also common to carry more than one knife.
When living in the wilderness you need to choose equipment that will not only last, will not only perform the tasks that it was made to do, but also to add to your quality of life. 

None of these blades above cost me more than $14, except the tomahawk which at the time of purchase cost roughly $40.00, and it is hand forged.
Above are the blades that I carry with me all the time when trekking in the bush. My tomahawk is used for making camps, fashioning trap pegs and stakes, and it can also be used in the butchering of game. It is an excellent fighting tool, it can be thrown and it can be used for hunting. A machete does not even come close to matching the capabilities of this axe.
As well as my hunting knife I also carry a legging knife and a friction clasp knife that I made myself from second hand materials. 

Your life may depend on you making the right choices in tools and equipment. So think about the tasks that you tools and equipment need to perform, and choose accordingly.

For traditional equipment in Australia.
Tell Mick I sent you.


  1. Fantastic Post my friend! Really great reading and pictures. The knives look very purposeful and the tomahawk a beauty. This is what real tools for bushcraft look like, and they obviously are reliable and have lasted. Great work Keith.
    Emmanuel Machler.

    1. Thank you Emmanuel, much obliged.
      Regards, Keith.