Bushcraft machetes, more versatile than the bushcraft tomahawks, are wilderness tools that every outdoor fanatic should own. Though the survival tools are only considered as weapons, they do more than that. They’re jacks-of-all-trades and will do it all, from heavy-duty works like cutting or splitting logs to detailed jobs such as carving wood.
We’ve taken sufficient time to surf the internet and develop a comprehensive review of the best bushcraft machete. More to this is a buyer’s guide that will make your purchase process easy.
This product knows best to combine excellent build quality and design. The blade is 17.5-inch long and has HD 1075 carbon steel. More to its design is the black powder epoxy coating which adds to the overall durability and resistance against elements.
The curvature of the blade allows you to cut through small trees, vines, and bushes smoothly. With some strokes, you’ll get rid of unwanted vegetation in the bush and set up a bushcraft camp anywhere in the wild. Besides this, the machete can also act as a defense weapon against dangerous wild animals.
The build quality makes it a robust and durable tool that will last you through the years. Although its blade is slightly thinner than similar models, the product performs best when clearing and cutting through thick brushes.
Amazingly, it weighs a pound, and therefore, no need to worry about waist fatigue. The blade’s full-tang character makes it run through the handle giving the user the right balance. Meet its ergonomic hardwood handle that understands the benefits of comfort and control.
What then after use? Smoothly slip it into its belt sheath and be sure that it will stay protected until the next use.
- Flexible yet durable
- Features an ergonomic handle for proper control
- The blade is thinner than blades of similar make
The Kershaw Camp 10 Tan full Tang machete is a great survival tool for those planning to travel off a beaten path. It comes in at slightly over one pound. Even with its sheath, the product remains light enough as a go-anywhere tool. But that’s just one feature.
The machete’s blade is a product of stainless steel thus guarantees durability and quality. It is amazingly strong despite its lightweight. This blade comes with a 65Mn, boasting toughness even in hard and rough use applications.
Additionally, the blade’s design is pretty versatile. First, the subtle curve makes it a great tool for clearing branches and brushes. Secondly, it has a sharp point to complete jobs requiring a delicate touch. Next…its entire surface has a black powder coating from resistance against elements. It keeps the steel beneath safe from oxidation and weathering.
Tan machete can split, cut, scrape, slash, hack, and also bushwhack — anything required to clear fields, trails, shores, roosts, fence lines, thickets, gardens, glades, hunting sights, or bushes. Do not worry about the cost of maintenance – with a 56 Rockwell Hardness Scale rating, maintenance is cheap and easy.
When it comes to safety, the machete has a sheath that is designed with the tan nylon polymer material. It is also threaded with glass to offer strength and stability. That said, the sheath will hold the blade securely.
Unlike many bushcraft machetes, this one has a textured grip for top-notch safety when in rigorous use. Its handle comes with a guard at the bottom and top to protect your fingers. Other features on the handle include a black hardware and lanyard holes, all designed to promote comfort and control.
- Has a comfortable grip
- Black powder coating for blade protection
- Pulling the machete out of its sheath may be daunting at times
Parang’s modern look is an improvement of a traditional jungle tribesman survival machete. Though it’s quite heavy, the invaluable jungle tool can perfectly complete short works of vines and branches. It has all the qualities of a tough bushcraft machete!
Gerber Gear bushcraft machete is unorthodoxly shaped, what many are not used to. However, this unique shape is what acts as the tool’s biggest assets! The shape makes the product aesthetically appealing. This means that outdoor fanatics who still maintain their fashion styles and tastes while in the wild are covered!
Instead of the “common” straight-line blade design, this machete’s blade boasts a conspicuous outward curve. The curve gives a better blade contact on the bushes you’re aiming at. Additionally, this curve makes the survival tool aerodynamic; it swings easily and one swing takes out a good amount of vegetation.
It’s blade is made from a high carbon steel that enhances strength, is effortless to sharpen, and resists rust and corrosion. Also, its full tang angle construction improves durability.
The machete comes in a military-grade and soft nylon sheath which is not only lightweight but also mildew resistant.
The handle has a rubber grip that is ergonomically textured for maximum control in whatever bushcraft condition. It gives exceptional hardness for comfortable grip. Additionally, comfortable contours and fine details prevents the hands from slipping off the machete. Pairing this with a wrist strap makes work fun and easier.
- Comfortable handle
- Swings easily
- Blade is uniquely shaped
- Military-grade sheath
- Some customers have had durability concerns
Meet another great product from Gerber Gear!
The Gerber Gator bushcraft machete is a fine-edged 15-inch blade that understands life in the wild. This survival gear is designed for versatility; other than the wilderness use, it’s also an excellent option for backyard use.
The blade deserves some praises! It has a straight shape and is made from high carbon stainless steel for optimal durability. One side is a smooth cutting edge to craft quick works of woods and brush. The tip is finely shaped to puncture an animal skin. The other side is a wood saw edge. These sharp teeth will flawlessly cut through large tree trunks and thick branches.
One impressive feature of this product is in its lightweight quality. The dual-purpose tool together with its sheath weighs 18 oz. making it suitable for trailblazing and beating back thickets and underbrushes. With this, you can be sure of a versatile performance and functionality without being weighed down. Despite this reduced weight, the machete isn’t small by all means.
The machete has a riveted nylon case sheath to keep it safe as you carry it into the bush.
The grip best understands one purpose: providing secure grip and unwavering confidence, no matter the wildness of the application. Its rubberized texture makes the machete an ideal tool for use in both dry and wet conditions. Comfort and stability is a guarantee!
- The blade has a generous length
- Robust construction
- The edge has a sharp sawtooth edge
- The grip does not offer much space for the fingers to hold firmly
Nothing beats the versatility of the SOGFari Survival Machete. No need to buy a wood saw and a chain differently; this 2-in-1survival tool performs both functions.
It is a 10-inch black blade featuring one serrated edge, another straight edge, and a strong tip at the top for piercing. Its saw teeth can cut extra-deep allowing clearing small trees and jungle vines.
The blade is made from the 3Cr13 stainless steel, making it durable.
The handle is a slip-free black grip and features an elongated spike tang for pounding or scraping. Besides this, the blade can perform other tasks like building a shelter during survival situations.
The SOGFari survival machete comes at a total length of 16 inches. Though long, it is lightweight enough to be your carry-along companion.
Great news; the tool comes in a solid belt loop and a ballistic nylon sheath for improved portability.
- Strong stainless steel blade
- Versatile thanks to the two-sided blade
- Serrated edge suitable for sawing
- Customers complain that the machete doesn’t fit perfectly in its sheath
KA-BAR Kukri Machete has an 11.5-inch blade and is made from 1085 high carbon and black Kraton- G. Overall, the product features a generous length of 17 inches, inclusive of cordura/leather sheath and a lanyard hole.
Feeling disappointed with the previous bushcraft machetes that failed to perform their boast? The Kukri machete will exceed your expectations! It is field-tested for use in clearing campsites, chopping weeds, and cutting down small branches. This feature along with an ergonomic thermoplastic handle gives a comfortable slip-free grip.
This machete boasts a 1085 carbon-steel blade which excels at all the basic field uses. It bites deeply and feels natural when hand-held.
Unlike all the other bushcraft machetes in our list, this is the only product that comes with an alternative carrying position. You only need to run your belt through its D-loop and front strap to allow the machete to sit horizontally across the lower part of your back.
- Ideal for clearing campsites
- Black Kukri-style
- Ergonomic thermoplastic elastomer grip
- Carbon-steel blade
- Includes a black leather/Cordura sheath
- Sheath doesn’t fit perfectly
Bushcraft machetes come in different shapes and sizes. This way, it’s daunting to sift out one that best suits your bushcraft needs. The market also floods with junk of exotic-looking options that claim to be “machetes” when they’re just a waste of money. Such will soon disappoint you! If you’re searching for the best bushcraft machete, be sure to focus on the following factors.
Don’t have very high expectations on three-dollar blades. On the same note, excellent performance doesn’t always mean super expensive. Noteworthy, a well-serviceable bushcraft machete goes at around $20 or slightly less. The market also brings you different price tags, making it easy for you to choose one that suits your budgeted pockets.
Length of the Blade
18 inches is the standard length for most bushcraft machete applications. However, slightly shorter spans like 15 or 16 inches also swing well in bushy vegetations. On the other hand, longer blades have the best momentum in open brushes.
In other words, many machetes have size ranges of 25 – 70 cm. This range gives an average length of approximately 45cm. Even though smaller and thinner blades are more portable, they have a lesser reach than thicker blades. While longer and thicker blades are not easily portable, they clear bigger surfaces faster and give better centrifugal force.
Traditional bushcraft machetes are still evolving, and this is to guarantee users excellent performance. The market is now witnessing fancy artistry. For instance, most manufacturers are now creating deeper curvatures in their blades. Though these tools are subjected to rugged works, their make and pattern are aesthetically appealing. The patterns make the machetes usable; you’ll not be ashamed walking around with the machetes.
Thinner blades work longer than thicker blades. The former bites lighter before your arms get tired. And so, if you’re planning to clear a large area, consider the lighter blades as they’ll allow you to work effortlessly and within the shortest time possible.
The most significant differentiator between the various bushcraft machete types is the blade’s material. Commonly, you’ll find machete blades made of stainless or carbon steel. Also, you’re likely to meet more rigid hybrid versions of high carbon stainless steel. The combination will give enormous benefits. Let’s look at each material;
High Carbon Steel
These materials tend to be more durable, affordable, and easy to re-sharpen. High carbon steel blades do not fracture easily, and you can rest assured of durability. Doubtlessly, the material performs better than those from low-quality steel. High carbon steel is harder than stainless steel. This quality allows it to have better sharpness retention. The only downside of the material is in its high maintenance cost; they’re difficult to re-sharpen and need regular oiling to keep them away from rust.
A bushcraft machete blade made from stainless steel is stain and rust-resistant. It has a lower cost of maintenance than that of carbon steel; unlike the high carbon steel, this material is easy to re-sharpen. This steel also features robustness and durability. One downside of stainless steel is that its edge retention is poor.
Many users consider a machete’s blade the most crucial component of the tool and forget about the handle material. Noteworthy, the handle material determines comfort and control. It also determines whether or not you’ll hold the machete for long hours. For many centuries now, wood has always been the most common handle material for bushcraft machetes. This is because it is reasonably cheap and long-lasting. Nowadays, there’re many other alternatives. Other modern approaches are like:
- Molded plastic – this handle material gives a soft holding surface. They are comfortable to hold but tend to become slippery when your hand sweats.
- Polymer – this material is best known for its little maintenance cost. It is also affordable and will suit the weights of your budgets. Just like the plastic handles, these can also be quite slippery when being used in wet environments. They also discolour when in use for long-term periods.
- Rubber – rubber offers an excellent grip. It has varied patterns and textures for aesthetic appeal and improved comfort. Additionally, rubber absorbs vibrations, allowing long-hours use. On the downside, though, this material tears over time.
It is now apparent that bushcraft machetes are designed to offer hard impacts and wide swings. The grip’s back end area has great importance. There is a vast difference between the handle material and the handle shape. While the material constitutes the handle, the shape keeps the machete from sliding off your hand when in use. After all, no one wants a bushcraft machete flying out of their hand in mid-swing; it can be dangerous!
Wrap Up: Our Choice
The Condor Parang Machete is a simple gear that performs better than its looks. This is the best survival tool that you’ll need to clear a jungle and set up a village. It takes the role of a self-defense weapon, a survival ax, a survival knife, and most of all, a survival machete! Its ergonomic hardwood handle allows you to work decently for long hours without getting tired of gripping the tool. That’s why Condor Parang Machete has earned the top place on our best bushcraft machetes!