Hunting Knife - Small Bowie


Today I would like to write shortly about the creation and evolution of my "small bowie" hunting knife. It is the first design I have ever made and used and I consider it to be a very practical and more or less universal outdoor knife.

It began more than a quarter century ago with the first knife that I made. Unfortunately, I lost it straightaway on a walk in a forest. The second knife I made was considerably better, although the steel is soft and the workmanship is of course still not great. Even so, it served me well for a long time and it even survived rough handling, more suitable for bushcraft than a hunting knife. I still have it, and although I consider it to be retired, it is still fully functional.

A few years later I finally got my hands on some stainless steel, although not one well suited for knife making. I have improved the design again and the workmanship does show progress, although it still is not a masterpiece. And it served me for decades too.

And because this knife served me well, I have included the design in my production repertoire, now with high-quality blades from N690 steel. Thus far, three of these knives are out there in the world, serving their new owners, and three more are available in the webshop.

I am not a hunter but I do have some experience with slaughtering, gutting, and dismembering domestic animals (although nowadays all of my meat comes from the supermarket). So to round it up, a few words about its design elements and the reasons for them.

The ca 11 cm long blade offers a sufficiently long cutting edge with good leverage for cutting difficult materials and good point control for piercing. The hand guard is big enough to shield the hand from slipping up on the blade when it is necessary to apply force to the tip or when the tip hits something hard. The false edge is sharp to help with penetration but the cutting edge towards the tip has a tighter curve to prevent unwanted piercing of the hide when skinning. The point of balance is at the pointer finger, which reduces the subjective perception of weight and aids with point control too.

However, there is more than one way to skin the cat and this is not some kind of "ultimate" hunting knife design. It is just one out of many possible knife designs and it suits me personally well. In the webshop are other types of outdoor knives too and each design has its pros and cons.