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Thread: the type of knife you use.. and has it changed over the years?

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    Member JuliW's Avatar
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    Default the type of knife you use.. and has it changed over the years?

    I remember many (many) moons ago - when I was first introduced to hunting as a young adult - I was given a 'hunting knife'. It was about the size of a small sword (exxageration) and was about half the weight of the rest of my hunting gear combined (exxageration) ... It wasn't really quite that big - but it was definitely very big and heavy, and bulky...

    I think I took it on maybe 2 hunts. LOL

    Over the years I have had several moderately sized knives. Now, the only knife I take to the field with me is a small victorinox knife - 4" blade, black plastic handle.. $8-9 brand new. I also have a small folding knife which I keep in my survival kit. It has a 2" blade.

    Over the years, as I am sure many people have learned, bigger is not always better. I could butcher an entire moose with the Vic...And last yr my bf butchered an entire caribou with my little folding knife..(our group had 4 animals down at once, and between packing quarters and going between animals he forgot to bring his own knife from one of the locations).

    Anyway, I doubt I will ever get another type of knife for skinning/quartering. Maybe something similar with a stouter blade..but I do like the flexibility of the victorinox...
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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    Back in the youth a very old Buck Lite folder, or my very old Kersaw drop point fixed blade, and now days the Havalon, and probably on backpack only hunts will have a Enzo 5811 necker. I always like to have one fixed blade knife and one folder.

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    Have used my 3 1/3 inch Ruana skinner for over 35 years.

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    over the years I have had a few knives but what ever I had the blade was folding & locking , the handle hat to have size an conture
    so when I picked it up I knew what was the cutting edge was, it seam the light was not good or dark at the time of the kill ,
    [ cut my hand one year so I learned ] my lesson the hard way SID

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    Quote Originally Posted by JuliW View Post
    Over the years I have had several moderately sized knives. Now, the only knife I take to the field with me is a small victorinox knife - 4" blade, black plastic handle.. $8-9 brand new. I also have a small folding knife which I keep in my survival kit. It has a 2" blade.
    I feel like that wouldn't be enough of a knife for taking apart joints. Am I doing it wrong? Or do you just cut your bones with a meat saw instead of taking them apart at the joint?

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    I usually carry a small folding knife with me too but I do 95% of skinning etc with a havalon knife.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    If weight is less of a concern, I generally carry both a Cutco hunting knife and a havalon. If weight matters, a havalon alone will do it (though my brother carries a victorinox like Juli describes above and has tried to convince me to do likewise). I started out with a simple folding Gerber and was happy with that alone, but the Cutco holds an edge better. One thing that I never carry afield is a sharpener of any kind. There's no need if one carries either a replaceable blade knife or one that holds an edge. I went through six animals with my Cutco before I ever had it sharpened again, and it was still doing great.

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    Member Roland on the River's Avatar
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    Juli, it's sooo refreshing to see your post. I got tired of re-reading all the posts on what to do with Sheep. Nothing is getting done, just more re-hashing.
    Quote Originally Posted by JuliW View Post
    I remember many (many) moons ago - when I was first introduced to hunting as a young adult - I was given a 'hunting knife'. It was about the size of a small sword (exxageration) and was about half the weight of the rest of my hunting gear combined (exxageration) ... It wasn't really quite that big - but it was definitely very big and heavy, and bulky...

    I think I took it on maybe 2 hunts. LOL

    Over the years I have had several moderately sized knives. Now, the only knife I take to the field with me is a small victorinox knife - 4" blade, black plastic handle.. $8-9 brand new. I also have a small folding knife which I keep in my survival kit. It has a 2" blade.

    Over the years, as I am sure many people have learned, bigger is not always better. I could butcher an entire moose with the Vic...And last yr my bf butchered an entire caribou with my little folding knife..(our group had 4 animals down at once, and between packing quarters and going between animals he forgot to bring his own knife from one of the locations).

    Anyway, I doubt I will ever get another type of knife for skinning/quartering. Maybe something similar with a stouter blade..but I do like the flexibility of the victorinox...

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    Member JuliW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HikerDan View Post
    I feel like that wouldn't be enough of a knife for taking apart joints. Am I doing it wrong? Or do you just cut your bones with a meat saw instead of taking them apart at the joint?
    Nope, don't use a meat saw, except on the skull. Cutting the joints is mostly a matter of knowing where the tendons and ligaments are that hold the bones/muscles together at the joint.
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    Member hoose35's Avatar
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    I have used a lot of different knives over the years and I have settled on a havalon and a small fixed blade knife the last couple years. On backpack back hunts I only carry the havalon.
    Responsible Conservation > Political Allocation

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    Four pin green river butcher.
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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    I used regular 3" blades hunting knives until I skinned at the taxidermy shop. Scalpels and victornox paring knife was all I used. So now I use a havalon for just about everything. I do carry a fix blade as a back up but its a little homemade thing a client built, use my gatco sharpener snd it don't seem to matter which knife it is it stays sharp.
    I make initial cuts in goats and moose with my cut I serated. Then the havalon for the rest.
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    Many, many moons ago I used what you might call a medium sized fixed blade with about a5-6" blade. I was told it was needed to break apart the pelvis bone on the whitetail deer we hunted. As I got older, I got smarter or at least I learned differently. We started hunting elk and it was difficult to break the pelvis bone with about any knife. I learned you don't have to break that bone to dress out the animal. Now I can break down any animal in the field with a Havalon. I don't always only use the Havalon but I could if I chose to. Learn the animals anatomy and you will be surprised at what you can do with little effort. Learn where the joints are and how they are held together and you will no longer break blades.

    Randy

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    I started out with a Gerber folder...it worked great but over the years I've tried a bunch of different knives. Finally settled on using the Havalon for about everything these days. For camp chores I have a Leatherman.

    I also use a Wyoming saw to split the brisket, saw ribs, skull plate, etc.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    Started out 40+ years ago with a big Buck General and a Buck Skinner. There was lots of sharpening going on. Slowly changed to a folding pocketknife Victorinox Hunter, which was easy to sharpen. Now have a Cutco fixed serrated and the Hunter. Cutco is too scary to use on something I want to save the hide on. I also have Cutco boning knives and fillet, so each winter, I pack up 3 knives and send back to factory to sharpen. $6 and they come back factory sharp. They have replaced 4 of my knives with brand new ones for reasons I don't even know. Just got a Havalon for Xmas.

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    I used a utility knife with a hook blade (the one roofers use) to make the initial cuts on a bear this fall and was stunned at how quick and easy it made the job.

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    Member JuliW's Avatar
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    That seems like it would work quite well... may have to give it a try!
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    My dad and stepmom gave me a Buck 105 Pathfinder back when I was in HS. Through a pretty fair number of whitetails, caribou, moose, a couple of brown bears and a black spanning over 3 decades, it has had at least a part in skinning every single one of them.

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    After years of using many different types of knives, I've settled on the best I've ever used. A good Kershaw folding knife with a little bit of a heavier blade and my favorite knife of all time, an Outdoor Edge Razor. This blade will never break like the Havalons.


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    Member JuliW's Avatar
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    Full Cry - my little folding knife is an outdoor edge. I really like it.

    I understand why many people like the ease of the replaceable blade knives - I have considered one myself. However I still like to sharpen my own. And I also have a hard time with the whole 'throw away' thing, (not that I don't have plenty of throw away type items - I do, and but I am a little more conscious about that now). Plus then you have to buy replacement blades...are those blades on the outdoor edge reusable? can they be saved and sharpened later?
    Taxidermy IS art!
    www.alaskawildliferugs.com
    Your mount is more than a trophy, it's a memory. Relive The Memory!

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