Author Topic: "Help me choose my next knife" - how do feel when you see these words?  (Read 5653 times)

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Offline kanukkarhu

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When I research (read, "obsess over") knives, I often see people on forums asking for recommendations. They usually go something like this: "I'm thinking of getting another knife, and I've narrowed it down to _________. Has anyone had any experience with any of these knives?"

It can also go something like, "What's the best bushcraft knife?"

Last Christmas I asked a similar question and I finally settled on an Ontario SP46 knife. Thing is a paddle. I modded it and loved on it and so forth. Well, it's only still around because (technically) it was a Christmas gift - even though I picked it out. It's not a bad knife - it's just not what I was looking for afterall. In fairness to me, I have very little opportunity to handle any 'real' knives near where I live and travel. Canada is largely devoid of cool knives, it seems....  >:(

I wish now I'd have listened to someone - anyone - else and tried something - anything - else.

Do these kinds of threads bother you?
Do you enjoy giving your opinion? Are you upset when the person doesn't listen?
Do they work? Have they helped you in the past?





Oh, and the last thing is, I think my tax refund is going to bring me - possibly - a new knife. So what's the best all around bushcraft/camp knife out there? ;D :lol:

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Offline wolfy

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Have you tried a Mora? :taunt: :rofl:
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Offline kanukkarhu

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Have you tried a Mora? :taunt: :rofl:
I was waiting for Moe's thoughts on a plastic handled Mora knife... :lol:

I take it you like these kinds of threads, then? Gives you the chance to weigh in with your whizdumb? ;D  O:-)
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Offline kanukkarhu

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Buy the weigh...

(and I hope someone gets my pun^)

...this is NOT aimed at anyone. In fact, I used my own example from this past  Christmas so that no one would think this was aimed at anyone. I'm just wondering about these threads because I've been reading a lot of them the last few days as I look into some stuff. In other forums these can end up sorta nasty.

KK

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Offline wsdstan

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Well I don't mind the threads so much I just wish people realized that a knife is a very personal thing and what is the holy grail for one is flea market fodder for another.  In my "whizdumb" you cannot go wrong with a Mora.  The do it all and pretty well for peanuts. 
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Offline kanukkarhu

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Well I don't mind the threads so much I just wish people realized that a knife is a very personal thing and what is the holy grail for one is flea market fodder for another.  In my "whizdumb" you cannot go wrong with a Mora.  The do it all and pretty well for peanuts.
+1. So true!

I've actually been considering that most of my wood crafty stuff can be taken care of with a mora of some kind. It's only the 'campy/survival' stuff I'd like a stout knife for.
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Offline lgm

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What I don't like about these threads is when the poster obviously has a knife picked out and is looking for validation of their choice.
If they want info from people who have a knife they are thinking of then cool. I'm in.
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Offline kanukkarhu

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What I don't like about these threads is when the poster obviously has a knife picked out and is looking for validation of their choice.
If they want info from people who have a knife they are thinking of then cool. I'm in.
Ya, and then they 'argue' with people who are just trying to help... I've seen that.

Like I said, some of these kinds of threads can get nasty elsewhere.

Still, it's interesting (and helpful) to hear everyone's thoughts on a knife (or other gear) BEFORE you drop the cash on the table.
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Offline wolverine_173

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ONTARIO TAK1 great knife for $70

Offline Mannlicher

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no knife is to everyone's satisfaction.  Guess that is why so many folks modify their stuff after buying it.  What works for me, might well not work for you.
I try to have my knives made for me.  I like working with a bladesmith that will allow me to design the knife, pick the materials, set the specs on grind.
I pretty much steer clear of offering advice on the 'help me pick a knife' threads.  I'll show what I use, but I don't proselytize.

Offline kanukkarhu

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no knife is to everyone's satisfaction.  Guess that is why so many folks modify their stuff after buying it.  What works for me, might well not work for you.
I try to have my knives made for me.  I like working with a bladesmith that will allow me to design the knife, pick the materials, set the specs on grind.
I pretty much steer clear of offering advice on the 'help me pick a knife' threads.  I'll show what I use, but I don't proselytize.
+1

I think certain better known production knives are approaching some custom knife prices... Am I correct on that? Might be worth the while to save a little more and get exactly what you want as you describe.
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Offline greyhound352

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Anything but a Grohmann Knife, some people go crazy over these blades. LOL

I believe the person really needs to know what they want their blade to do before offering a suggestion.

 If I were you I would find one of those vendors on the forum that makes subpar knives get you one. I know he hE got me to purchase 5 of them and enjoy them quite well!
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Offline Old Philosopher

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...

Do these kinds of threads bother you?
Do you enjoy giving your opinion? Are you upset when the person doesn't listen?
Do they work? Have they helped you in the past?
...

The first thing I think of when seeing these types of threads pop up is my old record player with the needle stuck in one groove. :P

The threads often help me become familiar with what's on the market these days.

I'm not sure my opinion counts for anything, because I'm not very sophisticated when it comes to brands/makers, different steels, and such. 
For many years I struggled along with a couple Buck hunting knives (Special and Pathfinder), and my Dad's old Western stacked leather handled one.
I love blades, and I would always fondle this one, or that one in the stores, or at custom knife booths, but never got the chance to put them through their paces.

I found a knife that does just about everything for me with the el-cheap-o Winchester (Gerber) fixed blade. Ergonomically, it fits my hand, and at under $20 what's not to like?
THEN I got my hands on a Mora Clipper, another <$20 knife.  :drool: The positive grip of the contoured rubber handle, and the blade-to-handle weight distribution really pleases me. It also fits well, and I feel like I have excellent control of the business edge.
I also came into possession of a beautiful hand-made knife. It's a real looker, and a wonderful conversation piece. It's one-of-a-kind, and a joy to own. But I'm not sure it will ever become my go-to knife.
So like I said, my opinion only means something to me, and now that I have a few blades to compare, I think a person still has to go back to what Greyhound just said, "What do you want your knife to do for you?"  The Mora is not a skinning knife, but the Winchester excels at it. The Winchester is a club when it comes to carving, but the Mora is born to it.

But regarding the OP, the one and only type of thread on this subject that gets to me is the guy who already collects knives, has about 2 dozen, and is asking what his next knife should be. Excuse me?  If you don't know by now what works for you, there's no hope. And if you aren't using them enough to know, then we're on a whole other topic.
And I also agree about the poster who has made up his mind, and only wants others to justify his purchase. Especially when he starts arguing with dissenting opinions.
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Offline kanukkarhu

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Anything but a Grohmann Knife, some people go crazy over these blades. LOL
Did somebody say, "Grohmann"?!? :shocked:
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Offline Yeoman

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"Help me choose my next knife" - how do feel when you see these words?
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2014, 01:41:10 PM »
I don't mind these posts at all. It's the replies to them that bug me a bit. "I'm torn between x and y knives for z purpose. Anyone have either one? Can you give me some advice?" Reply, "j is the best knife." WTH? Dude asked between x and y. Although the person may think they're being helpful, it doesn't answer the question.


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Offline kanukkarhu

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The threads often help me become familiar with what's on the market these days.



But regarding the OP, the one and only type of thread on this subject that gets to me is the guy who already collects knives, has about 2 dozen, and is asking what his next knife should be. Excuse me?  If you don't know by now what works for you, there's no hope. And if you aren't using them enough to know, then we're on a whole other topic.

And I also agree about the poster who has made up his mind, and only wants others to justify his purchase. Especially when he starts arguing with dissenting opinions.
Three really good points^, I thought.

Total agreement on the first highlight above: they are helpful and I've been using them wondering if I do want to buy yet another knife and which knife. Also, it can help find those 'treasures' you never considered. (TOPS Mohawk comes to mind for me...)

On the second highlighted bit, I think there are times when a new brand or design is being considered that a discussion is warranted, even if you're a real knife guy. I also think some people get bored (or obsessed) and enjoy the discussion. I know that the joy is in the hunt more than the kill for me...

Finally, I've also seen the last highlighted part^ too. And man, it bothers me..  >:(
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Offline kanukkarhu

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I don't mind these posts at all. It's the replies to them that bug me a bit. "I'm torn between x and y knives for z purpose. Anyone have either one? Can you give me some advice?" Reply, "j is the best knife." WTH? Dude asked between x and y. Although the person may think they're being helpful, it doesn't answer the question.


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Man, I've looked at literally dozens of these threads over the last week or so, researching knives I was considering using some EXTREMELY rare mad money on, and I have seen this^ and worse! One of the worse cases was two entirely different threads, on the same forum, by the same guy. He was rude and unhelpful. I think it was a gift he had...
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Offline Old Philosopher

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...  by the same guy. He was rude and unhelpful. I think it was a gift he had...

Seems to be a lot of that going around.
Seems also that a lot of folks should spend more time at the local arcade shooting gallery. It's like they just browse the forums, and take pot shots at any post with which they disagree. Never very helpful.  I call it "sniping"....

Those "which knife, A or B?" answered by "How about J?" drive me nuts, too. It's like, dude, do you have a reading disability, or a cognitive one?
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Offline Dano

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I'm gonna take a bit different spin on things and throw this out...

How about telling us what knives you do already have, what you like and dislike about them, what the intended purpose will be (you already mentioned camp/survival as one topic) and then narrow it down from that angle.

Kinda like buying a vehicle.  If you know you're gonna haul firewood and pull a trailer, then most cars are out and you're gonna be looking at a truck of some sort.  Not trying to sound like a smart a$$, but I think the more information people can get, the better off we ALL are- both sides- you and anyone offering a recommendation.

When it comes to knives, so many things come onto the playing field, that it's almost impossible to offer a suggestion without as much information as possible.  I don't think there is, has been, or ever will be ONE knife that does it all outstandingly. 

I also think we hit plateaus where we acquire something new, go through the learning curve with it, become more proficient with it, the new wears off, and it's time to look at something else.  Kinda like when we were young and hot-rodded cars.  New engine and trans, stepped up the gears, add a set of headers and dual exhaust, crammed a huge tach on the dash with the red line set at 6-grand, went out and melted the tires...boy was it fast!  Then after a couple sets of rear tires, we knew how it handled, how fast it would go, who you could race (and who you couldn't!) when to hit the brakes to keep it on the road, etc.  Then we started thinking about an even BIGGER cam, another gear set, a different stall converter, and on and on it went.    OR....we ran it off the road when the brakes failed and had to get another car....but that's another story....

I enjoy these threads, but kinda stopped chiming in because of a few things.  Some folks recommend a certain knife and even post a few pics of it.  But there isn't even the first scratch, scuff mark, nick, smudge or minute trace that it's ever been used.  So how do they KNOW it's a good knife?  It cost a pretty penny to buy it and they had been looking at it for a long time...but then they don't want to use it in fear of it getting the pristine worn off.

One more anecdote and I'll shut up.  When I was a kid we once took a vacation fishing/camping trip to Kentucky Dam.  My dad had hired a guide, who was talking to a couple of guys when we arrived at the marina.   Ends up that they offered to pay the guy three times what he was going to charge my dad, so he went with them.  Naturally dad was pissed and we listened to a good hour of him cussing the guy out and calling him every name in the book as they pulled away.

Then we see this old guy with the most ragged boat you've ever seen, sitting on the bank on the outside of the marina area.  So dad walks over and asks him if he could recommend a place to fish.  The guy offers to take all of us out for the day and hardly charged him anything.  At the end of the day we happen to be pulling into the cove about the same time as the first guide.  The old man putters over and asks how they got along.  They held up a couple pretty good bass and got to bragging about how much luck they've had.

Then the old man tells my brother and I to haul up the stringers we had (110 pounds total!) and if you could have only seen the looks on their faces!!!  It was priceless!

Sorry for the rant, but I'd like to hear more about what you have and what you're looking to do.

Offline kanukkarhu

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^great post, Dano.

I should say again - because I realize I wasn't too clear - that I'm not actually asking for myself, rather bringing up something I noticed as I was looking earlier this week.

(As for my mad money and tax return  - the missus and I usually take a wee portion off the top for 'mad money' and treat ourselves... we worked hard for it and 'gave' it to the govt and they're only  returning it... - I think I'll likely pass on yet another knife (I have a disease) and get one of those new, crazy overbuilt bullet proof daypacks. I have a camelbak BFM 45L and it's too really large - and heavy - except for extra gear and clothes, like winter load outs).

But back to the thread...

I was looking for a 4.5 - 5" do it all bushcrafter/survival knife. I had narrowed it down to the Fallkniven S1 (SS was intriguing for winter use), the TOPS BOB (I'm currently short on full tang scandi type blades), the TOPS Dragonfly (meh) and a Canadian knife (no, NOT a Grohmann), and the Ontario blackbird SK5.  Pretty random,I know. Oh, and I 'discovered' another interesting prospect for another time in the TOPS Mohawk.

But again, I'm not really asking here... this is more about these kind of threads.
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Offline Dano

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Well duh, I read it wrong....thought you were currently looking.  See what I get for thinking  :-[

Offline kanukkarhu

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Well duh, I read it wrong....thought you were currently looking.  See what I get for thinking  :-[
Hey, man, still an awesome post!

I was pretty confusing. It's a thing with me. :shrug:

;D
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Offline dancan

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/........

But back to the thread...

I was looking for a 4.5 - 5" do it all bushcrafter/survival knife. I had narrowed it down to the Fallkniven S1 (SS was intriguing for winter use), the TOPS BOB (I'm currently short on full tang scandi type blades), the TOPS Dragonfly (meh) and a Canadian knife (no, NOT a Grohmann), and the Ontario blackbird SK5.  Pretty random,I know. Oh, and I 'discovered' another interesting prospect for another time in the TOPS Mohawk.

But again, I'm not really asking here... this is more about these kind of threads.

I like these threads :) lots of good input from many and I know that one persons likes are not the same as the next person's .
I've had an ESEE 6 and even though it probably had the most comfortable handle of all my knives it still felt like a paddle in my hand LOL
Since I own or have owned a few of the same knives and you're not asking I'll mention the Falkniven S1 or a BRKT Gunny as 2 mad money candidates ......
Someone asked for help didn't they ???
What was the question ???

Offline kanukkarhu

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/........

But back to the thread...

I was looking for a 4.5 - 5" do it all bushcrafter/survival knife. I had narrowed it down to the Fallkniven S1 (SS was intriguing for winter use), the TOPS BOB (I'm currently short on full tang scandi type blades), the TOPS Dragonfly (meh) and a Canadian knife (no, NOT a Grohmann), and the Ontario blackbird SK5.  Pretty random,I know. Oh, and I 'discovered' another interesting prospect for another time in the TOPS Mohawk.

But again, I'm not really asking here... this is more about these kind of threads.

I like these threads :) lots of good input from many and I know that one persons likes are not the same as the next person's .
I've had an ESEE 6 and even though it probably had the most comfortable handle of all my knives it still felt like a paddle in my hand LOL
Since I own or have owned a few of the same knives and you're not asking I'll mention the Falkniven S1 or a BRKT Gunny as 2 mad money candidates ......
Someone asked for help didn't they ???
What was the question ???
lol! :lol:

The S1 looked real good! :drool:
The BRKT is a little too much coinage for my mad money supply... :)
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Offline Draco

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Do these kinds of threads bother you?
Do you enjoy giving your opinion? Are you upset when the person doesn't listen?
Do they work? Have they helped you in the past?


No they don't bother me.

If I didn't enjoy giving my opinion I would not answer.  I am not upset when the person does not listen.  It is their choice after all.

Do they work is a good question.  I'm not sure.  They get me thinking about other points of view so I would say they work for me and yes have helped me.

I believe there are three kinds of people who ask this question. 

First is the person who has all ready made up their mind and just wants others to say "good choice" like a waiter in a fancy restaurant. 

The second person is one who does not know enough about how they intend to use the knife to even get a good recommendation.  They probably have very little dirt time and are in love with the idea as much as the actual execution.  What I find most humorous about those types are not the person asking the question but the inevitable arguments that ensue over this style or that style when they were never even given enough information to make a good recommendation in the first place. 

The third type is the person who ask for specific recommendations and knows exactly what they are intending to do with it.  Those are rare but the most valuable information comes from those threads IMO. 

Offline kanukkarhu

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Well thought out^, I'd say. :thumbsup: Interesting perspective.

I can see those three groups for sure.
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Offline mumbley

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Bark River Knives get my vote. I own 6 different BRK and am happy with all of them. They sharpen to a whisper of an edge.
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Offline OhCanada

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I do not like the "What's the best bushcraft knife?" because it shows a lack of understanding of bushcraft. Bushcraft is not a thing, craft is an old term for skill and the skills needed for the bush are many. What part of bushcraft are you doing that you need a new knife for? Cleaning a fish? Gutting a deer? Preparing a meal? Making a fire? Carving a bow? Chopping down a tree?

I do not like the "best" knives threads in general. They are a waste of everyone's time. Better to ask, as Yeoman (Hi Yeoman! It's been a while) suggested, "What is your opinion on this knife or these knives?"

The worst thing you can say on a knife thread, my most hated thing, is, "This knife is/would be perfect for (insert task here)", when you don't even own the knife!


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Offline Gryphon

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I enjoy these threads, but kinda stopped chiming in because of a few things.  Some folks recommend a certain knife and even post a few pics of it.  But there isn't even the first scratch, scuff mark, nick, smudge or minute trace that it's ever been used.  So how do they KNOW it's a good knife?  It cost a pretty penny to buy it and they had been looking at it for a long time...but then they don't want to use it in fear of it getting the pristine worn off.

I gotta say this is my general observation with any gear review.  I take care of my stuff but the cups and pans I use have obvious smoke stain.  My knives I use are worn and knicked.  The stuff I don't use sits in a series of milk crates in the garage.

Knife opinions are like woman (or guy) opinions.  I like petite redheads but I also like leggy blondes.  Someone else is going to dig busty brunettes, etc.  I do have to echo some of the previous comments and plaguerize a gooftube vid I watched recently:  the guy was talking about high value knives, in particular Moras.  the point was inexpensive blades that perform well, thus delivering a high value for the money.  Thats the stuff I'm most attracted to.  I'd love a high dollar custom but I'll never own one as I can think of too many other things to spend the cash on as a "high-value" inexpensive knife works for me...tho I am lusting after a Becker.
 
I guess it comes down to much of whats been said: if someone asks for an opinion, take what is said, evaluate the info for yourself and do what you want.  I don't care if someone takes my advice or not, but don't argue or bash my input...and I won't bash anyone else's.
I do really like gear pics of stuff in use...for knives especially in someone's hand as it gives a sense of scale.
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