A Hunter’s Guide To The Best Skinning Knife 2017

best skinning knifeI’ll automatically judge you by saying you’re one cool dude just by being on this article! So you want a skinning knife, eh? Well, cool people have to stick together!

(Don’t react, just play along).

Of course, you’d want to bring along the best skinning knife. I believe you don’t want to die…right?

Thinking It Through: What Are The Best Skinning Knives?

I’m kind of excited for this one – skinning knives are the best when it comes to aesthetics and flair. Allow me to enlighten your mind with units that’ll make your hunting a relatively stylish one.

ImageModel NamePriceReviewsAvailability
Benchmade HUNT 15001-2 Saddle Mountain Skinning Knife and FREE Benchmade SharpenerBenchmade HUNT 15001-2 Saddle Mountain Skinning Knife and FREE Benchmade Sharpener$$$5 stars
Buck Knives 0103 Skinner Fixed Blade Knife with Leather SheathBuck Knives 0103 Skinner Fixed Blade Knife with Leather Sheath$$$4.5 star
Tops Knives Tom Brown TrackerTops Knives Tom Brown Tracker$$$4.5 star
Mossberg Fixed Skinning KnifeMossberg Fixed Skinning Knife$4.5 star
Havalon Piranta BOLT Skinning KnifeHavalon Piranta BOLT Skinning Knife$$4.5 star

Quick Talk: Learning About Skinning Knives

I’m sure you’re already aware that it can’t be put under the same category as the regular kitchen knife you have at home. This bad boy is meant for outdoor activities such as hunting the hides of games! As badass at it may seem, if you fail on getting the best one, there’s a chance things might get bloody.

It doesn’t matter if you are a pro in enduring wildlife conditions, you still need a capable skinning knife to get you through the jungle alive. So much more if you’re just starting, then you badly need to make sure it isn’t dull in any possible way.

When you’re in game to take care of your trophy, it wouldn’t be a beautiful sight if you’re struggling to fight just because your knife isn’t in top shape. The best knife would always have to be sharp and should get the job done faster than any other knives.

The application of these knives carry a pretty heavy purpose, that’s why manufacturers of these products limit its size and weight. You need to find a knife that will allow you to be the best hunter that you can without experiencing any difficulties.

How To Choose The Best Skinning Knife?

It’s true that the best skinning knife that would suit you largely depends on what you’re going to use it for. For instance, if you’re going to use it for skinning a deer, then you shouldn’t use a knife that’s used for skinning rabbits as it the results will be affected.

However, there are these common characteristics that every high quality skinning knife have in common. And learning about them, will surely bring big favors to you. This is most especially true to the people who are just starting on this trade.

Look out for these qualities:

Check Out Its Blade Style

Its blade design does more than just changing its appearance. But its style also plays a heavy role when it comes to the knife’s application. You may find knives in which their blades are curved and have a slightly bowed back.

For some, they sometimes imitate an axe’s edge, they’re somewhat of a sort fixed blade knife. It sports a tiny gut hook so you could easily remove the carcass due to its small incision without damaging the membrane.

The best skinning knives are placed in three main categories:

Spear Point Knives

These knives features a double edged blade and are highly distinguishable thanks to its symmetrical shape. They’re perfect for cutting hides in upward and downward directions – definitely a reliable hunting knife.

Drop Point Knife

You’ll recognize them having a blade that’s slowly curved down to the tip. Handles of these knives have a firm grip, it also gives the hunter a wider cutting surface. As a plus, they prevent you from puncturing membranes found on the belly.

Clip Point or Bowie Knives

These knives have a straight spine that garners up to one-third of its length, establishing a bowl-shaped curve running to its tip. This is specialized for deer hunting because of its large cutting area.

Study The Blade Length

You should already be aware of what kind of knife you want to buy, and where do you want to use its application – know the needed blade length. Never use the same knife for the small and big games as they’re intended for different knife sizes.

Knives that are 3 to 4 inches long are perfect for skinning rabbits, squirrels, beavers, and many among others. However, you can’t use a 3-inch knife to skin bigger games like moose and deer as it wouldn’t work efficiently. Ideally, the knife should be at least 5 to 7 inches in length.

Sharpness Is A Must

I know that this is a common ground for all the knives, but the need for sharpness when it comes skinning knives doubles! Because you know…you can’t exactly stop in between the forest just to sharpen your knife – a wild rabbit might attack you!

Make Sure It’s Durable

The perfect skinning knife must be able to perform properly for a lifetime! But of course, that’s impossible. It doesn’t matter how expensive the brand is, after years of service, it’s going to be predictably dull.

But the best skinning knife is able to perform task without fail during its lifespan. There are reputable brands out there like BenchMade. You’ll learn about it more in the next few minutes.

What Are The Different Types Of Skinning Knives?

Educating yourself on the available types of skinning knives allows you to be mentally prepared for when you’re about to set foot on your journey. Here are the four types you need to know:

Folding Blade Knives

This is the best type of knife if you’re after safety. These knives can conveniently be folded to prevent accidents from happening when you’re not using the unit.

They’re pretty much light and you can carry them around with no problem at all; however, despite it being sharp, when there’s too much pressure, its tip may break.

Gut Hooks

These are ideal of puncturing as it can swiftly pierce hooks onto each side. You can conveniently pull off the skin with no complications at all. As a matter of fact, professional hunters use this to open the belly of the game.

On the other hand, you should be careful with its hooks because once it has lost its edge, they’re extremely hard to revert back to its original state.

Fixed Blade Knives

You can safely assume that these knives are most suitable for skinning bigger games. With this at your aid, you’re guaranteed of a firm grip allowing you to apply full force into skinning without worries of it having to break.

These are strong, sturdy knives that won’t fail you when you’re carrying out a tedious task. But these knives may be heavier when compared to the rest of the types – it doesn’t sound all bad. You’ll definitely slay your work.

Swingblade Knives

Revolving knives are quite handy to do the job. These knives have blades that are connected to one bolt; each blade serve a different purpose. The first blade is used as the regular skinning knife while the other is used for cutting animal bones.

But here’s the catch: They’re completely vulnerable to any changes of extreme weather conditions. You’re advised to only use this type for field dressing for your knife to last longer.

Best Skinning Knives 2017

Benchmade HUNT 15001-2 Saddle Mountain Skinning Knife and FREE Benchmade Sharpener

Benchmade HUNT 15001-2 Saddle Mountain Skinning Knife and FREE Benchmade SharpenerIf you fancy an old-school look but still able to kick butt in the field, Benchmade Hunt is the right knife for you. It gives a sense of prestige in its vintage look – a manly man’s utility, if you will.


This knife might look old, but it’s definitely gold. It features an edge retention for better skinning and has a S30V Blade especially intended to keep you from corrosion.

The elements that are present in this knife have been articulately scrutinized and tested for you to have the best user-experience as possible; they’re made out of strong material to give the user a sense of comfort.

One of this unit’s prominent feature is that it has Dymondwood Handles that allows a sturdy grip with an amazing appearance to boot. Along with it, it has Premium leather sheath for its storage.


  • Excellent Edge Retention
  • Dymondwood Handles
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Corrosion-resistant


  • Blade has the tendency to dull quickly

Should You Buy It?

It’s a neat product, which goes without saying. It has an amazing design, and it’s made for an unforgettable skinning experience. It may start to dull quickly, but it sharpens fast too. You can go with this knife, it’s a give-and-take situation.

Buck Knives 0103 Skinner Fixed Blade Knife with Leather Sheath

Buck Knives 0103 Skinner Fixed Blade Knife with Leather SheathFunctionality and performance is what this knife calls for. It definitely has a unique exterior look that makes it instantly attractive even at first glance. This is a knife you’re going to carry around with you.


Buck 0103 comes with a really shipshape black phenolic handle with aluminum pommel allowing you to maximize its use. The manufactures made it their intention to let this knife have a curved belly and a narrow tip for better skinning.

For you to the through tougher layers, it sports an exclusive 4″ Extra-Wide 420HC Steel. This also makes your task less difficult as it aids you to the best of its functionality; its length is 8 1/4″ and is 4.3 oz. in weight.

It’s a knife that does it job perfectly, so much so if you’re dressing a large game. You’ll feel that it’s a sold knife that’s durable from its tip to handle.


  • It comes with a Genuine Leather Sheath
  • Buck Forever Warranty
  • Cuts through tougher layers
  • Solid and Durable


  • Gab between the blade and the handle is too big for some users
  • Handles get greasy and may slip out from your hand

Should You Buy It?

Its features are commendable as it carries the basic fundamental qualities of what an effective skinning should be. I personally admire the simplicity of the design, and it’s a high quality knife with an economical price. If it fits you, then it’s definitely a knife you’ll love.

Tops Knives Tom Brown Tracker

Tops Knives Tom Brown TrackerWoah! It makes me feel as if I can win the Hunger Games with this one (Not really, I have horrible stamina). Its design has definitely caused people to talk about Tops Knives. If you have a few hundred dollars to spare, you should definitely purchase this unit.


It gives off an overall length of an outstanding 11.88” – it’s really strong and sturdy. It can easily handle the excess wear and tear without a cinch.

One of the reliable brands of knives today, it shaves, draws, and notches with its incredible blade material: 1095 Steel; it’s absolutely perfect for gift giving. This applies especially to people who are after design and performance.

It gives an amazing handling experience as its handles are made out of Rocky Mountain Tread, it focuses on giving the knife both durability and functionality.

Lastly, it also comes with Kydex as for its sheath – it’s simple, durable, and dependable.


  • It’s Made of Highly Durable Materials
  • Its Quality is Second To None
  • Lasts a Lifetime
  • Excellent Solidity


  • You have to use a safety lanyard since it does not offer a hand guard

Should You Buy It?

It might cost a few more dollars than the other knives, but I’d definitely recommend this knife if you a have a few bucks to spare. After all, you can’t compensate price for quality, right?

The manufacturer made it sure that the knives would be worth every penny. It’s a considerably solid knife that would make a commendable aid in your hunting.

However, to avoid cuts, you have to be extra careful with this one – it is scary sharp. You know what Spiderman said, “With great power comes with great responsibility”.

Mossberg Fixed Skinning Knife

Mossberg Fixed Skinning KnifeAre you up for hunting? Then you’ll definitely feel the hype with Mossberg’s creation. It has an outstanding look coupled with its incredible functionality. Definitely one of the knives I genuinely admire.


Let’s explore what this unit can do! It has been indicated that this unit has been titled as the “all-in-one skinning knife” by enthusiasts– it even has a gut hoot for added feature. It’s one of the more all-around knives on the market.

This particular units boasts a non-glare, stainless steel to enhance your convenience. Not to mention, they’ve added a comfortable grip to make it easier for you to maneuver while skinning the game.

Its length goes up to 6-3/4″ and 3-1/2″ of it is its blade. It has the perfect size for movement, and it is remarkably sharp.


  • It has an Economical Price
  • It is a Non-glare Stainless Steel
  • Ballistic Cloth Sheath included
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Great Sharpness


  • This unit needs a bit more sharpening

Should You Buy It?

This is something you need to think about and consider before buying. It’s fairly sharp, although you need to take time into sharpening it that’s for sure.

On the bright side, this doesn’t cost much compared to the other knives on the list. If you’re an enthusiast, I’d recommend this to you. It is light to the pocket, easy-to-use, and will definitely help you gain experience.

Havalon Piranta BOLT Skinning Knife

Havalon Piranta BOLT Skinning KnifeAnd finally, we have the last contender on our list – Havalon Piranta’s knife. It’s a nice easy-to-carry knife than you can keep around with you. For someone who likes smaller sizes for a knife, this one’s for you.


It only has one color for the product: Orange. You’re able to conveniently fold the knife at ease after usage to prevent you from unwanted injuries; it has an inner lock construction.

This unit also carries a Rugged ABS blaze handle for a firmer grip. You can control your movements at will making skinning a breeze. This also has ambidextrous thumb studs for an easy opening.

And for its bonus feature, it has a removable pocket clip.


  • Easy to Pinpoint Precision
  • Carries a Sharp Blade
  • Fantastic for Light Cutting
  • High Quality Materials
  • Easy to Handle


  • No Warranty
  • Difficult to Change Blades

Should You Buy It?

It gets the job done, so why not? It’s lightweight yet it’s able to skin and trim without a cinch. Despite it being difficult to change its blades, you can certainly do it at a safer place like your house for safety measures.

General Thought: Which One Is For You?

By far, skinning knives have the best designs ever. You have a variety of options to choose from making it a lesser burden for you. You just have to make sure that the knife you’re buying matches with your skinning intentions. If not, it’s going to raise a problem.

There are well-made brands in the market that have proven to be effective when it comes to skinning, but what matters is not about the brand’s name, but what brand you’re likely to get along with. Just a reminder: Always read the reviews of the unit for better judgment. It helps.

If that isn’t enough, I’ve prepared a nifty YouTube video for you in hopes it will aid you in choosing the perfect knife that best fits you.


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