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Vicioustom

What's your Go-To machete?

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I've noticed that a lot of other folks on here are machete users as well. If you're anything like me you have at least a couple of machetes lying around, or have had a couple dozen pass through your hands over the years.

 

So what is your preferred machete and why?

 

I've had and used a lot of machete's over the years, but the Malaysian style of machete seems to be the best fit I've found for north America, so I carry a Condor Golock in the brush now. It's a quality piece of steel, made to handle hardwood. It holds a hair popping edge well, easily packable, and has an expansive sweet spot.

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I've never been a big fan of the gerber machetes, I've gone through a couple and couldn't seem to get them to last and the push cut saw backs I've never found too useful. I suppose I could be using the wrong technique with them. Although I did have an Ontario with a saw back that did alright by me until it got blown up.

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I've never been a big fan of the gerber machetes, I've gone through a couple and couldn't seem to get them to last and the push cut saw backs I've never found too useful. I suppose I could be using the wrong technique with them. Although I did have an Ontario with a saw back that did alright by me until it got blown up.

Ok you are going to have to tell the story behind it gettin "blown up" =)

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V, would that be the sp8? Two pounds of leaf sping steel, I love it! The weight forward design and the splitting capability. It's the last knife I bought.

 

I had to go look it up, sadly it wasn't, it was one of their old school military machetes, which is still a good piece of steel. This one in fact http://www.ontarioknife.com/catalog/item/51

 

Not much of a story really, it was lashed to the frame of my ruck which was lashed to the side of a truck when it got hit by an RPG.

Edited by Vicioustom

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Just went to that site and that is a good look blade, going to have to look into that brand more.

 

If I may make a recomendation for ppl not as familiar with machetes, take a look here; http://www.machetespecialists.com/

 

There are of course other resources, and machetes are far more diverse as a tool than many realize, I'm also willing to share what I know.

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I have the Gerber Gator, has worked well for me so far, thinking about trying that one that Bear Grylls has, my friend has one and loves it

 

Yeah, the BG Parang, design wise it looks like a nice blade, I was tempted to pick one up when they first came out, but got sidetracked with some other edged implements. If you end up getting one let us know how it handles.

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I currently have three machete-style blades, Gerber Gator Machete Pro (looks like a Woodsman Pal), Cold Steel Kukri and a Ontario RTAK II. The Ontario is not a true machete but can get the job done in a pinch and is my favorite. I am planning to get a Woodsman Pal before summer to replace the Gerber (I'm not real impressed with the Gerber as it will not hold an edge well and is uncomfortable in my hand).

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I have one of the cold steel Kukri's as well and while I like it, it's poorly suited to a pinch grip which has led me to getting worn out far too quickly using it. Also without the more hatchet like weight of a traditional kukri, I have one of those as well to compare it against, it doesn't seem to have the amount of horse power it should.

 

I keep hearing good things about the RTAK knives, so it's not surprising that it's your favorite.

 

Forgot to mention, that I had a woodsman's pal at one time, for my taste I found it a bit bulky and cumbersome for what it was actually doing for me. It was a heck of a chopper though, even if a bit tiring. Ended up trading it for a hisatsu still in the package and about 200 rd of 7.62x54r brass cased. Ran into the guy I traded it to about a year later and he absolutely loved it.

Edited by Vicioustom
Addition

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I got too many

 

The Parang is one of my favorites mine has a stalk cutter like a finger.

and the design depends on your area I would not use this for BO because it is short.

This will make me bend to much to clear certain material like cane or wait a minute vines

if not cut close to the ground will shred your pants legs or tangle your footing

causing foot and leg injuries

a long blade here in my area because it is so thick you can't even crawl.

in some areas where there is less tanglefoot a machete is used for chopping firewood

and making shelter poles etc.

 

I have at least 6 or more from 18 inches to almost 3 foot long different style points

 

and I do like a saw back blade but Gerber does not have a full tang though the handle

so it is a non starter for me any blade except folders MUST have a full tang handle

or they are worthless now this does not mean we cannot alter them.

 

but there is nothing worse than having a handle fall off and all you got is a skinny

hand ripping no gripping piece of crap and now your in the bush and no way to

fix it with out taking a day to use a stone and grinding a handle and finding material

for slabs and then waste other materials for holding it on and it will slip anyway

It's a bugger...

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When I lived down south as a teenager I had a cane knife like that with the brush hook and such, was pretty handy when I'd head into the bush. The undergrowth and vines there are a lot thicker than where I am now.

 

I know what you mean about having a lengthier blade in that terrain to get down where all those ankle grabbers are, I made a slightly longer handle for that machete just for that reason, all the bending and cutting with a pack on will wear you down fast.

 

On the subject of saw backs I came across a fellow soldier once who was using once that cut on the pull stroke and had a curled handle, heck of a nice chopper and the cutting seemed to be more efficient with the saw. His grandfather had made it for him so sadly it was a one of a kind.

 

And I hear you about busted handles on partial tangs, at least with a full tang you can wind some cordage around it or wrap a shirt on it to protect your hand.

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vicioustom

 

yea I only mention these things so many do not waste their money as for most of us it is

hard earned and in short supply

 

i am only 5' 9" and that works with most implements but it is a hassle if a tool is too short or too long

or just ergonomically wrong for your way of working or right or left handed and who else may

have to use it.

 

so many things / items are predicated on our location and where we will bug out to

what will work great in one area ain't worth a crap in another and some of this stuff is very expensive

My Emergency radio cost about $65 bucks with shipping {a Kaito }

I used my other radio for my significant other GHB and that was over 20 bucks I figure I got to much

invested in radios but during a storm I like to know the weather at least.

 

and I got a few charities I like to give to and I would rather do that than piss money on bad gear

{that darn buyers remorse thing}

and the shipping prices are getting crazy so I try to get more than one item to make it cost effective.

 

and being a Christian that 2x2 ark thing comes into play if I got one why not a spare and then i give it

to someone and it never ends LOL

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I know, these are some expensive interests to have, just nickle and dime you to death. Really hurts when you end up buying something popular with your finite funds and it turns out to be junk.

 

I'm about 5'6" so most tools tend to be just a touch too long for me, of course youth guns fit me pretty well :)

 

I have this bad habit of seeing a newcomer (in any of the circles I inhabit) struggling with some bad gear and if the situation is dire enough trading their bad for my good, or just outright giving them what they need if it's not critical or overly expensive for me. Makes me a fool, but a small thing to me that I can overcome with experience can be a very large thing for them and keep them from backing out of the endeavor out of frustration.

Edited by Vicioustom

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post-1642-13851497822196_thumb.jpg

 

You'll never want another Machete after owning this Kabar Kukri. I cut up coconuts like they are nothing. Chops wood easily.....and looks sexy as hell :)

 

They are 40 bucks on Amazon. I recommend you read the reviews on there. I doubt you'll find a better Machete.

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You'll never want another Machete after owning this Kabar Kukri. I cut up coconuts like they are nothing. Chops wood easily.....and looks sexy as hell :)

 

They are 40 bucks on Amazon. I recommend you read the reviews on there. I doubt you'll find a better Machete.

 

I had one of these shortly after they came out, now I realize they may have improved the design over the years since then, or mine may have been a fluke, but I experienced a nasty case of edge separation first time I took it to the field. I assure you I wasn't doing anything too crazy with it, or at least nothing crazier than I'd be willing to do with a quality heavy blade from any reputable manufacturer. For that matter I've had poor experience with Ka-bars standard field knife over the years.

 

I know a lot of folks have had Ka-bars for years with perfect performance from them, so it may be that I expect more from my blades than the average Ka-bar user, and use them harder. Not trying to smear a proven knife maker at all, but I have to honest about my experiences.

 

On a side note when i got in touch with customer service they thought it was a heat treat issue, but refused to replace/repair it because I had changed the edge geometry. I don't understand it, and I'm sure they had their reasons but it left a bad taste in my mouth.

 

If you look at reviews you'll see my experiences are in a very thin minority.

 

As far as finding a better machete, I'd say it depends on use, My kukris have gotten less and less use after the initial purchases, simply because they seem to be too deeply specialized into the chopping itself. They can be a pain to baton with, are terrible draw knives, don't take to pinch grip cutting at all and making a sheath or finding a replacement is a royal pain. But for just chopping it's hard to find that kind of horse power in such a small package.

 

I hope the Ka-bar crew doesn't lynch me now :eek:

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I have owned and used an Ontario Knife standard machete w/ saw back for 15+ years. Though the saw back is usless as a saw ( no good way to get a good back pull ) it has been an excelent machete. I made an overbuilt leather sheath with a pivot so it make for easy belt loop carrying and packs well too. Made in the USA and full tang is an understatement. I actually had to shave a bit of the tang down to match the handle width.

I've used it for everything from backpacking to yard work and have to do little edge maintenance. Blade came in a matt-black finish and a hard plastic handle with a lanyard hole through the rear of the handle instead of having a goofy nub off the back. I have used others and keep going back to this one.

 

And I payed about $20 shipped from Smokey Mountain Knife Works.

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Yeah, there's a reason so many people have those Ontario machetes, been considering getting another one for my wife to keep in the trunk of her car. Anyone have any experience with the self sharpening sheaths that seem to go so well with these machetes?

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I never cared for "self sharpening" sheaths. Seems like either they do a poor job of keeping the blade sharp or just prematurly wear a blade out. I prefer to keep a double sided "butterfly" style diamond hone with me. It is a coarse/extra coarse which when sharpening a tool like a machete, axe, or similar is all you need.

Edited by Floyd
kant spel :/

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fair enough, was thinking about it for my wife, she outright refuses to learn any of these sorts of skill. I personally keep a mill file and a stone handy. Came across some plans a while back for a portable field usable convex sharpening block been thinking of putting one of those together since I prefer that edge type on my bigger blades, but they can be hard to maintain in the bush.

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I do like a sharpening stone for pocket knives and the like, but for tools, they just take too long to get a blade back in to shape. Especially if you are trying to get a ding or knick out of a blade. And files, even though they are at a high Rockwell hardness, still (imo) take too long. diamond stones are they way to go. A few extra bucks but they last longer, and do not loose their shape as a stone will.

 

As far as the wife, well.... even if you did put a blade and GHB or BOB in her vehicle, she most likely would leave it behind or just more often get on your case because it takes up valuable trunk space when she goes grocery shopping. ( I know because mine does. Good thing there is storage under the 2nd row bench seat of the GMC :) ) There is a thread floating around here somewhere about getting her involved in being a prepper.

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Funny as it sound I have a few small diamond hones but never thought of them as large enough to handle my machetes, which after thinking it over for a second is silly. They are certainly hard enough and aggressive enough to get the job done. I have no idea on the axes, I'm not much of an axe guy, which i realize is a big hole in my skills.

 

And I've really tried everything short of trying to dictate to her (Always a bad idea to do that with anyone, especially you wife), but she just isn't going for it. My thoughts are that I need to at least make sure she has what she needs, if she fails to use it, or refuses to that's her decision. I think she's depending on me as a safety net if anything goes haywire, which I'm okay with, but still it worries me a bit.

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