Survival Knife Uses: Why All Preppers Should Own One
I’m a big proponent of owning multiple survival knives. Fixed blade survival knives, as well as folding blade survival knives, can benefit a prepper or survivalist in a number of ways. Maybe you are trying to justify a couple of new knife expenditures to your spouse, or even to yourself, whatever the reason, here are a good number of reasons for owning one. My favorite type of survival knives are on my best fixed blade survival knives page, but I also have a basic survival knives page which features some cool folding knives. In the end, it is all about what you need the knife for in terms of concept. It is always best to have a few options.
Building a Survival Fire
If you are ever lost in the woods (it can happen easier than you think), you may need a reason to build a fire. The ability to build a fire can, in the short term, help stave off frostbite. In the long term, for preppers, it can help to cook food. The ability to build a fire from few resources is absolutely pertinent to being a survivalist or prepper.
A large fixed blade can help you chop up branches and twigs. If your fixed blade is strong enough, you can even chop down small trees with it. Once you gather the fire’s fuel, you can use the survival knife’s firestarter capacity and build a nice and warm fire.
Many of the knives on my best fixed blades survival knives list offer a firestarter built in. The firestarters are decent (enough to help you spark some ember in a pinch). You will have to look through the top list to see which come with it, but I own the Bear Grylls Ultimate Pro Survival knife which has a decent fire starter attached to it. I’ve used it to start fire, but it’s not an incredibly easy task. However, keep in mind, a survival knife should be capable of a lot of functions but not always be the most optimal solution. Survival situations often render many of our modern applications useless, hence, having some way to spark a fire is better than none.
Check out my Bear Grylls Ultimate Pro Survival Knife Review.
Self Defense Survival Knives
Never underestimate the need to defend yourself. No matter what type of environment you live in, evil tends to lurk. Clearly, you need to check with state laws before you carry a concealed survival knife, which may steer your decision as to which knife you carry.
This is a tricky matter. Many people think of self-defense knives as “switchblades” and “spring assisted.” But I’m not a fan of any knife that has a blade which could, by accident, spring to life. I see more bad in this than I see good. I am a fan of economic folding knives.
I carry the SOG Salute Mini. It cost me around $30 (on the high end). You can check out my SOG Salute Mini review for more info.
Honestly, there are many great options for EDC knives. I just like this one. Yes, without spring assist, you will take longer to open the knife. If you practice, this time difference shouldn’t make too huge of a difference. But physically opening it is something you have to consider. A self-defense knife should be one you can open with one hand. The SOG Salute Mini is a great example of one that you can definitely open with one hand. Pay attention, SOG has two thumb bolts for opening, but my hands don’t play nice with them.
The SOG is just an example of an affordable option, I doubt it is the best option, but I love mine. Here are some shots of me opening it using one hand, albeit, unorthodox. I can open it fast. Here’s the version I own on Amazon.
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Because there is no working spring on the SOG Salute Mini, I don’t have to worry about it opening accidentally in my pocket when I’m fumbling around for my chapstick. I also like the fact that this is a lightweight survival knife that fits snug in my bug out bag.
The con to a self-defense knife is that you need to make sure that if you are ever in an altercation, you don’t provide the criminal with more weaponry against you. Take self-defense classes that deal in knives. Look into jiu-jitsu. Prepping is an educational experience on all levels.
Build A Temporary Shelter With A Survival Knife
If you are ever lost in the woods, or SHTF goes down in a serious way and you have to bug out, you may need to survive using temporary shelters. A machete of even one of the best survival hatchets would better serve you in such needs, but don’t underestimate the power of a full-tang fixed blade survival knife.
A full tang survival knife can be used to both saw and chop down small trees which would be essential to building a temporary shelter.
Carving New Tools Or Weapons
A survival knife can lead to the construction of new tools and weapons. By carving healthy wood, you can build a legitimate spear that aids you in fishing. You can make rope and fish or set traps. If you already have rope, you can build a primitive crossbow.
The survival knife is essential in helping to build more on what little you might start off with.
If you are in a prepper or survivalist situation, you may need to hunt for your own food. If you have the ability to obtain game, you will need to clean and prepare that game before cooking it for dinner. A survival knife can assist you in cleaning out the animal and cutting out the appropriate pieces of meat you’d need to survive.
In conclusion, a good survival knife (or three) are essential to own for both prepper and survivalist needs. You can build a shelter, hunt game, clean game, make rope and even make spears and crossbows. I always suggest owning more than one survival knife, one for EDC and one that’s a full tang beast capable of chopping down small trees. Its a small investment with a big return.
Author: Jim Satney
PrepForThat’s Editor and lead writer for political, survival, and weather categories.