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Thread: Fillet Knives

  1. #1
    Member MyKC395's Avatar
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    Default Fillet Knives

    I am looking to pick up a quality fillet knife for a Christmas present, but I am not sure what brand and model. I am not looking to break the bank, but don't some cheap piece of metal that won't last. Any help would be appreciated.

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    Member Unalakleet yooper's Avatar
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    Default

    You may want to go down to the general discussion section and go to the cutco group buy and look at the fisherman's solution. They are excellent knives.

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    I second the cutco recommendation... of course, it really depends upon what you will be filleting with your knife. Big kings take a completely different tool than halibut, rockfish, or even sockeye for example. The cutco fisherman solution is a good all around knife though, and stays sharp for an extended amount of time.
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    Default Cutco

    I have a Cutco Vector extendable fillet knife and LOVE IT! With the extendable blade, it allows me to use for a number of different fish. Best knife I have ever owned.

  5. #5
    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Default

    I have used many brands of fillet knives... Kershaw, Normark, Buck, Gerber, and the old standy blonde wood handled Rapala (arguably my favorite). There is no magic bullet. They ALL eventually get dull, some a little sooner than others, but eventually that razor sharp edge is going to succumb to repeated use.

    The advantage with the "softer" knives that dull quicker is that they sharpen more easily. The ones that last longer will be that much harder to sharpen once they are dull. To me, investing in one name brand over another in an arbitrary matter.

    The smarter investment is in a good sharpening system. I just touched up all my fillet knives the other night with the Lansky system.

    http://lanskysharpeners.com/

    I've been very happy with this "controlled angle" sharpening system because it gives me consistently good results.
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  6. #6

    Default Eagle River Knife Co.

    For my money, I'd vote for a fillet knife from Eagle River Knife Co. (www.eagleriverknife.com) as the best choice. I've got a Cutco fillet knife and it's good, but a little "soft" for me. The Eagle River is better steel and has a stiffer spine, which is particularly nice when filleting bigger fish. It would make an excellent gift.

  7. #7
    Member BucknRut's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by happytobeinAK View Post
    I've got a Cutco fillet knife and it's good, but a little "soft" for me. The Eagle River is better steel and has a stiffer spine, which is particularly nice when filleting bigger fish.
    I won't speak out against the Eagle River, but I would like to contrast your "stiffer spine" opinion. I tend to like the flexibility in a blade. It allows me to feel the fish and react to it. I assume your comment in "soft" was referring to the back and not the steel itself. This past year I happened to fillet a lot of fish. I lost count at 252 salmon filleted between the two of my Cutco Fisherman's Solutions! Yes they were ready to be sent in at the end of the summer, but I've never seen a blade do that before. I will say that how you fillet has a lot to do with keeping an edge. There were a few folks in our group that insisted on sawing instead of slicing, their steel did not last nearly as long.

    Again, no knocking of Eagle River Blades, just my experience with Cutco.

    If you want to learn more about the Cutco, drop me a PM or see the General Discussion Forum.

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    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BucknRut View Post
    I will say that how you fillet has a lot to do with keeping an edge. There were a few folks in our group that insisted on sawing instead of slicing, their steel did not last nearly as long.
    If your fillet technique is limited to sweeping/slicing thru only flesh, your blades will last a lot longer. If you habitually cut thru all the ribs to release your fillet from the carcass, have a sharpening steel handy to frequently touch up the edge.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    Member BucknRut's Avatar
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    Thumbs up yup

    Quote Originally Posted by fishNphysician View Post
    If your fillet technique is limited to sweeping/slicing thru only flesh, your blades will last a lot longer. If you habitually cut thru all the ribs to release your fillet from the carcass, have a sharpening steel handy to frequently touch up the edge.
    Good point and one that I agree with, but do not always follow. My rule of thumb is that I follow your method for fillets being smoked or baked and I take the ribs if I am going to can. Leaving the bones in your canning jar really increases your calcium intake.

    Sorry for the offshoot on this thread, back to knife suggestions...

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    Member MyKC395's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Thanks

    Thanks to all who responded...that is what I love about this site...so many folks with working knowledge to help those of us who are less informed and new to the outdoor lifestyle. You guys rock!

  11. #11
    Member AK Trout's Avatar
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    Thumbs up cutco

    love cutco got 2 handles and 5 blades and never had a problem with them.

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  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by AK Trout View Post
    love cutco got 2 handles and 5 blades and never had a problem with them.
    How do you sharpen your cutco blades? I have some but normal sharpeners don't seem to do the trick. I think it's a very different angle. The woman who sold me the knives said you mail them in to get sharpened.

  13. #13

    Default Like fishing lures or rods,

    you can never have too many knives. I've yet to buy an expensive one, but maybe this year I'll check out a Cutco. I currently have a rosewood handle Cabela's model for filleting pike (removing "y" bones); the blade is very thin with a very flexible tip (required).
    I've also gotten away from the cheap "bucket" (as in bargain bucket at the store) fillet knives as they dull quickly and a dull knife can bleed you bad. For sockeyes I bought one of those Rapala knives with a white plastic handle and curved blade; it's not flexible, thin, or good for skinning, but holds the edge quite a while and works well with our method of processing reds (slice down from top of fish, over, not through rib cage). I also have a long Dexter-Russel fillet knive model SG133-8 and probably my favorite knife so far is a Forschner 40610; I think it'd be great for our method of filleting reds and for halibut but it stays in the kitchen drawer and doesn't get to go to Alaska.
    Jim

  14. #14
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    Default The loaner blade...

    I take pride in my blades so much that I never pass them to anyone for use. Yet, to stay friendly, I deliberately purchased a loaner knife and sharpener to give to anyone who asks.

    This was a wise move, and I've done it for years...

    Rosenberg/Florida
    "Two decades researching and defining fishing opportunities in the Last Frontier!"


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    Here is one, really nice and practical. "Knives of Alaska"
    (actually made in Texas) Bought mine thru Cabela's. Have 2 or 3 different blades price about $38 plus.

  16. #16
    Member Waldo2382's Avatar
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    Default

    Personally, I like knives with a lot of back bone. I use my Forschner 8" and 10" breaking knives for everything. I've worked on charter boats in San Diego and used them for everything from 10" rockfish to 200 lbs tuna. They are especially useful for those bigger rockfish and lingcod and do a pretty slick job at salmon and halibut. As for the dexter russel, thin knives with lots of flex, just ain't my thing.

  17. #17
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Default

    My friend gave my son one of these folding rapala fillet knives when we went out fishing together last year.



    I'm a firm believer that in general less is more when it comes to fillet knives. I've used larger fillet knives but have found that the little rapala is much easier to ease in many cases.

    What I need to invest in is a diamond steel for a quick touchup of the blade. Whatever you use, keep it sharp.

  18. #18
    Member jrogers's Avatar
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    Default a vote for Cutco

    I don't know that the cutco's stay sharper longer, but I have sent in three broken blades, and bot only have they sent me new blades, but the last one they sent me the handle and the sheath as well. Breaking them usually involves doing something stupid with them. They don't take side force well. They are designed to fillet fish.

    Jim

  19. #19
    Member zekeski's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Dexter Russel..

    These are the best fillet knives I've tried. Butcher supply shop in Mt View has a great selection of Dexter Russels and they won't break the bank. Give em a try, you won't be sorry.

  20. #20

    Default Second to the sharpening system

    I have used all manner of knives on everything from grayling to kings and have found that having a sharp knife is by far the most important. I like to touch up whatever knife i'm using before I go out and I bring along a hand sharpener that I run the knife through after each side of the fish. In my opinion it is only advertising that really sets a lot knives apart, good technique and knowing how to sharpen your stuff is the best bet.

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