The Best Kukri Machete Knife

Are you looking for a good machete knife? A machete is a long cutting tool that is used around the world for cutting vegetation, cutting trees, and camping. However, some machetes are too long to be legal in certain states or are too long for general use. That is why you need a machete that would work well as a sword or a knife.

The Kukri machete is a great machete knife. It originates from Nepal (a small country between India and China). It usually is between 14 and 16 inches long and weighs anywhere from 1 pound to 2 pounds. The Kukri is mainly used for chopping but can also be used for self-defense.  The uses are typically as an all-purpose utility blade which is very common across Central Asia.

The Kukri was designed so that, when you swing, the balance of the blade is forward in the handle. Unlike other knives that have a balance, centered weight, the Kukri’s forward weight helps it to chop and cut better.  There are 3 parts to the blade of a Kukri: a pointed tip that lends itself well to stabbing (I’m hoping it’s not often done on a person!!), a midsection that’s pretty wide and it’s used for chopping.  Finally, there’s a narrow area near the handle which is good for carving, shaving wood or whittling.

It is much better than a parang machete for cutting wood. Machetes are often paired with survival knives and small pocket folding knives.

What to Look for in the Best Kukri Machete

If you want a machete knife that would last you for ages, you need to make sure it has the following:

  • Blade: The machete needs to have a blade that would not rust easily or get dull fast. This is key to making sure the machete will stay useful for a long time.
  • Tang: The tang is the non-sharp part of the blade that extends into the handle. Traditionally, the Kukri does not have a full tang but, if you are going to be chopping a lot of hard objects, try to find one with a full tang since it adds to the durability of the knife.
  • Sheath: A machete with a low-quality sheath is terrible and unsafe. The sheath has to be as good as the knife.
  • Handle: The handle of the machete needs to have a good grip. Traditional Kukris from Nepal use ivory, wood, or metal handles. Modern Kukris use polymer handles.

Condor Tools & Knives Heavy Duty Kukri Knife

Condor Tools & Knives Heavy Duty Kukri Knife

Condor Tools & Knives is a company that produces exceptional machetes of every variety and this one delivers the same quality with awesome looks!  This knife was designed by Joe Flowers for Condor and while this may be hard to believe, Condor has been making similar tools since 1787!!!  

This model was designed to be a compact version of the bigger Kukri Knife and has all the cutting and penetrating power of a regular Kukri.  Even though this one is smaller than a big Kukri, it’s pretty heavy at 1.75 pounds while having only a 10-inch convex grind blade.  That extra weight adds significantly to its usefulness as a serious hacking tool.  The blade is made of 1075 high carbon steel and it’s blasted for a satin finish.  The 1075 steel can hold its edge well and it’s easy to sharpen, as well as being resistant to chipping.  Overall it’s quite a decent steel and we’re glad to see it on this machete.  The HRC (Rockwell Hardness) is 56-58 and this hardness combined with the thickness of the blade and the size of the machete, makes this good for heavy wood chopping and splitting!

The handle is a darned good-looking South American hardwood and it comes with a durable leather sheath.  The sheath is made with thick, black leather with a snap closure and a swiveling belt loop.  It’s not MOLLE compatible, but that makes sense for a traditional Kukri with a leather sheath.  

The knife itself is a full-tang design (as most good machetes should be) and it’s 14 inches overall in length.  That makes it one of the absolute most convenient models to bring in your backpack.  The “heavy-duty” designation is no overstatement.  This is a tough machete made for the toughest uses.  It’s essentially made for abuse!  

Overall, the design of the Condor heavy-duty Kukri is eye-catching and attractive.  Ironically, it’s meant less for looking at than abusing and the leather sheath is perfectly designed and features the condor logo front and center.  This one’s our choice!  Can you tell?

Cold Steel Kukri

Cold Steel Kukri

Cold steel has been making fine, quality blades since 1980. The Kukri Machete by Cold Steel has a 13-inch blade and weighs 16 ounces. The weight was sufficient enough to chop with ease. The handle is made out of some rubber/plastic material that feels very good in your hands and does not add unnecessary weight to the machete.

The sheath attaches to your belt just fine and the size of the machete does not hinder you walking around. Great for hikes. Some reviewers even stated that this tool works amazingly for chopping dead trees that have fallen down on trails. You can read more about the Cold Steel Kukri machete here.

Ka-bar Kukri Machete

Ka-bar Kukri Machete

Ka-bar is one of the most famous US knife makers. It became known for making great knives for the USMC. The Kabar Kukri machete is no exception. It is 1.7 pounds and is 11.5 inches long. The blade is a carbon steel blade–meaning it won’t get dull fast. The blade is also VERY thick and, with its weight, makes chopping tree limbs a breeze.

The handle is another plastic/rubber material that fits very well in your hands. There is also a hole at the bottom that you can use to tie 550 cord to make a lanyard.

There are nearly 1000 reviews for this product on Amazon and everyone gives this knife 4.5 out of 5.0 stars. You can read the reviews here.

Cold Steel Magnum Kukri

Cold Steel Magnum Kukri

Just like the first Cold Steel machete we reviewed, this is the exact same knife with the exact same dimensions. The only difference is that it now has a 17-inch blade! It also now weighs 18.2 ounces. This is only 2 more ounces than its lighter cousin and yet 4 inches longer. To do this, Cold Steel made the knife not as thick. The added length gives you more momentum in a swing so you can chop down larger branches but it is also a little bit bulkier around your waist.

The blade is made out of 1055 Carbon Steel and it has a tough spring temper.  The steel surface is coated with a black, baked-on anti-rust finish.  The edge is quite sharp from the factory, but even Cold Steel says it could be sharper with just a bit of work after unboxing.  The polypropylene handles are tough and comfortable to grip.  These handles resist exterior forces like chipping and cracking so they should last a lifetime (and a little bit beyond!).  

It also features a Cordura sheath.

If you are going for short hikes or are using vehicles, this one is cool to have around since it is GIGANTIC. Otherwise, get the smaller one if you need to save space/weight. Read more on Amazon.

Conclusions on the Best Machete Knife

So, which machete knife is the best? Well, if you are looking for an all-around good knife, I would go with the Kabar. It is the SHARPEST out of all 3 and weights good. I’m pretty fond of anything with Kabar on it actually. The other knives by Cold Steel are good too (meaning they’ll get the job done) but you won’t be able to shave your face with them.

The Kabar also feels better in my hands. You can check it out here.

Do you have another machete knife that you own? Or, did you purchase one of these knives? Leave a comment in the comment box below. We love to hear from you. Check out our review on throwing tomahawks if you like to see things get destroyed.

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