Skinning knives are very different from the typical knives you see at home or anywhere else. They’re purposely made to accommodate the needs of hunting, which makes it a suitable product for beginning to advanced/experienced hunters. The best skinning knife should be durable, has a sharp edge and can last long for a long period of time. Here are our top three choices for the best skinning knife.
1.Benchmade 15001-2 Saddle MTN Skinner
If a topic involving skinning knives is a religion, failure to mention this Benchmade 15001-2 Saddle MTN Skinner is surely a sin. This skinning knife is inspired by the designs of typical fixed blade models. This current model, replacing the old 4.17” blade, includes an altered 4.2”, really sharp and rust-resistant S30V, high-quality stainless steel blade. This high quality component has surprised us with its amazing edge retention capacity and sturdiness.
The handle is made out of solid dymonwood, providing you a better grip of the skinner for an improved skinning performance…
If you are a passionate hunter, you should really buy this skinner. We also suggest that you use this during filed dressing medium-sized games. Because of its cutting capacity, even the expensive price can’t stop this from continuing to be one of the favorites of hunters over the past few years.
2.Buck Knives 113 Ranger Skinner Hunting Knife
A new addition to the line of Buck Knives, the 113 Ranger Skinner hunting knife is crafted to be a cross between their distinguished and really famous old model of the 113 ranger folding knife and the famous Vanguard knife model. For years, Buck Knives have become one of the most popular brands of outdoor knives in the USA.
This particular knife features a nice ground drop point blade crafted from a carbon stainless steel, along with a deep, hollow ground bevel, completing the amazing look of this product. It also comes with a leather sheath that you can wear by attaching to your belt, making it easy for you to reach, whenever and wherever you need it. The robust American walnut hole featuring Bras Bolster impresses us. This model of a skinner/ hunting knife has made its reputation for its impressive workmanship.
3.Buck Knives 0691BKG Buck Zipper Fixed Blade Knife
The 0691BKG Buck Zipper Fixed Blade Knife is another model by the Buck Knives, which features a 4 1/8 drop point 420HC steel blade, along with Guthook, all in an 8 ½” frame and a light weight of just 6.6 ounces.
The handle is crafted from textured rubber, along with a brass butt or guard, making it a valuable piece of equipment. The heavy duty nylon sheath is effective in protecting both the user and the blade from harm. All of these features come with a lifetime warranty they call as the Buck Forever warranty program. It may have a few minor setbacks, such as having a nylon sheath that is more suitable for folding knives, but overall, it’s a masterpiece and works well with its intended use. If you’re willing enough to try, you should buy this model.
4.Buck Knives 0119
This knife is a beautiful American icon, with a blade length of 6″ and an overall length of 10-1/2″. If I could describe Buck 0119 with a word, that word would be: precision. This knife is great for heavy-duty tasks that require attention to detail and cutting in tight places.
The blade is made of 420HC steel, which is Buck’s standard blade material; it offers superior edge retention and corrosion resistance, it’s easy to sharpen and it’s great for constant use as well. Another good thing is that it has a full tang that goes all the way to the pommel, so it’s indeed solid and reliable. The Buck 0119 features a thin clip point blade with a sharp point; this makes it great for skinning, piercing, field dressing or filleting a fish; it’s a light weight knife as well, so this is another reason why Buck 119 is suitable for such tasks. You can skin both big game and small game with this tool, the blade is really versatile. The blade comes razor sharp right from the factory.
Buck 0119 comes with a leather sheath that will enable you to securely carry the knife.
- The quality of the sheath is not that great.
- The handle can get slippery under wet conditions.
CONCLUSION: This is really a strong and attractive knife, that will definitely help you get the job done fast. This knife is great for you if you’re looking for a product made in the USA that offers quality, value and Forever warranty. It’s a really useful and versatile tool that any hunter should own!
5.Havalon Piranta BOLT Skinning Knife
The Havalon Piranta Bolt Skinning Knife features a stainless steel #60A replaceable blade that’s made in India; when purchasing the knife you also receive a pack with 12 additional blades. This is really great because if one of your blades gets dull while doing your job, you can replace it with a new one. These blades are really durable and get the job done.
This Havalon Piranta is extremely sharp; this can easily be the sharpest knife you’ve ever used, so be careful to not hurt yourself. The blade length is 2-3/4″” and the overall knife length is 7-3/8″. It’s light weight and it’s a folding knife, so you can easily carry it in your bag.
The handle is made in China and it has a large and orange rugged ABS blaze. It offers a comfortable and solid grip and the orange color makes it noticeable in dark conditions. This Havalon Piranta has Ambidextrous thumb studs, that make the knife easy to open.
- It can be hard to clean.
- You should be careful, since the blade is really sharp.
CONCLUSION: The Havalon Piranta Bolt Skinning is one of the best skinning knives available for everyday hunters. It’s durable, sharp, reliable and you won’t have to worry the blade will get dull: you can replace it with another one. Besides skinning, this knife is great for field dressing activities or for hunting big game; it has all the necessary elements to help you do your job and it’s one of the best skinning knives available today.
6.Outdoor Edge Swingblaze SZ-20N
This knife is another tool that the passionate hunter will love, because it’s interesting and innovative at the same time. Created by hunters for hunters, the Outdoor Edge Swingblaze SZ-20N features two blades in one: a drop point skinning blade and a gutting blade for opening big game.
The skinning blade is 3.6” and the gutting blade is 3.2”; the overall knife length is 8.3″. The blades are secure and they’re easy to clean too. How can you change the blades? You simply push the lock button, it’s really that easy. The Swingblaze SZ-20N features a AUS-8 stainless steel vacuum heat treatment and subzero quenched blade, which guarantees superior edge retention.
The handle is made of rubberized Kraton and the bright orange color makes it difficult for you to lose the tool in dark conditions; it’s also easy maneuver the knife under wet conditions. When purchasing this knife, you receive a nylon belt sheath with lifetime warranty.
- The blade can be prone to rusting, so it’s recommended to carefully clean and oil it after each use.
- Not suitable for everyday use.
CONCLUSION: I love this knife because it’s innovative and it offers an interesting solution to get the skinning job done precisely. It’s really great to have two blades in one, but as I already mentioned, they can be prone to corrosion. Great knife overall that will be useful for your activities!
7.Buck Knives 0691BKG Buck Zipper
This is another interesting knife from Buck Knives! This 0691 Buck Zipper was designed for heavy duty activities and it’s perfect for skinning. This knife is ideal for skinning because it features a drop point Guthook blade made with 420HC Steel. The blade length is 4 1/4″ and it’s designed in such a way that it prevents any damage that can happen during skinning. The blade also offers good edge retention and protection against corrosion. The role of a Guthook is to assure the hunter that he won’t affect the quality of the meat by accidentally cutting into the intestine or other organs of the animal.
The handle is made of textured rubber, which guarantees a comfortable and safe grip. The knife comes with a heavy-duty Nylon sheath.
- The blade comes razor sharp out of the box, but it can require sharpening after the skinning process;
- The quality of the sheath is not that great.
CONCLUSION: Buck Knives is one of the best brands for hunting knives and they rarely fail. Their products are strong and they offer superior quality; this Buck Zipper is no exception and it’s ideal for skinning deer, hogs, elks or even wild pigs. I’m sure you would love to work with this tool on your next hunting adventure. American quality with lifetime warranty!
8.Gerber Moment Field Dress Kit I [31-002218]
This Gerber kit consists of two powerful fixed blade knives. You can use this kit whether you’re a novice hunter or an experienced one or whether you usually hunt small or big game. One customer even managed to dress out a bull! Another customer didn’t have any problems to process a deer.
The larger knife, the Moment Fixed Blade Knife, features a strong gut hook that guarantees even greater control over your game; it works for small dissections as well. The smaller fixed blade knife works best for detail work and you can use this knife when dealing with small game.
Both of the knives have full tang construction, so they are solid and durable. You can rest assured that this beautiful kit won’t let you down, because it was field tested for the best results.
Since they are fixed blade knives, they are easy to clean and maintain. Both of them come sharp right from the factory and they are able to hold the edge very well; they are also easy to sharpen. They have comfortable and trustworthy textured rubber handles and they come with a double nylon sheath with metal snaps. You can carry the knives in a pack or you can attach them to your belt.
- The quality of the sheath is not that great.
CONCLUSION: This is a kit, so you should consider that the knives work together to provide the best results; it’s not like one knife is better than the other, both of them are there to get the job done. The Gerber Moment Field Dress Kit is definitely one set that you can try out!
Choosing The Best Skinning Knife
A skinning knife is an absolutely necessary tool for any professional hunter. When searching for the best skinning knives, you need to be aware of the fact that this process is not easy and it requires attention to detail and precision. Having the right tool is essential to accurately get the job done, so I recommend you choose a knife specially designed for this task.
What to consider when buying a skinning knife?
You should consider some points when searching for the best skinning knives:
- The first thing you should consider when buying a skinning knife is whether you usually hunt big or small game, since they require a different approach; a blade of 5″ will be great for a big game hunter and a blade of 2-3″ will be appropriate for a small game hunter. It’s important to pay attention to the knife’s length; a skinning knife doesn’t need to be too large or too heavy, since it will be too uncomfortable to get the job done. I cover this subject in the reviews section of this article and we tell you if a certain knife is suitable for you or not.
- You can choose either a fixed knife or a folding one; both of them have their own advantages, but a fixed blade will be more reliable when used on a daily basis; however, I mention in this article some interesting folding knives that are worth buying and trying.
- Another important factor is the edge retention; I’m sure you don’t want to notice in the middle of the skinning process that your blade is dull, so picking a knife that will remain sharp even when used on a daily basis is essential.
- The handle needs to be solid, comfortable and water resistant, so you can use the knife in any weather condition.
Regarding the brands, I like to focus on already established knives, that have already proved they are reliable and do good work; of course, you can choose a new brand as well, just make sure you do a lot of research and read the customer reviews and the best skinning knives are listed above.