If you are a hunter, you know how messy it is to field dress your game. It is a bloody but necessary part of the sport. Having the right knife for the job can make the process a little easier, but with so many different hunting knives on the market, knowing which type to choose specifically for field dressing can leave a hunter feeling befuddled.
Don’t worry. We’ve sorted through a multitude of blades to come up with this informative guide. Use it to help you choose the best field dressing knife to take with you on your next hunting trip.
Top 10 Field Dressing Knives Table
|Picture||Name||Blade Length||Price||Rating (1-5)|
|Picture||Name||Blade Length||Price||Rating (1-5)|
|1. Buck 192BR Vanguard, Fixed Blade Knife||4 1/8 inches||$$$$||4.8|
|2. Gerber Moment Fixed Blade Knife, Gut Hook [31-002200]||3 ½ inches||$$||4.8|
|3. Case Medium Skinner Leather Hunter Knife||5 inches||$$$$||4.5|
|4. Yes4All 9" Tactical Hunting Survival Knife Skinner Gut Hook Fixed Blade + Nylon Sheath||4 ¼ inches||$||4.5|
|5. Real Avid Viscera Field Dressing Tool||3 ¾ inches||$$||4.5|
|6. Buck Knives 392 Omni Hunter 12pt Fixed Blade Knife with Heavy-Duty Nylon Sheath||4 inches||$$$||4.4|
|7. Meyerco Mossberg Fixed Skinning Knife||3 ½ inches||$||4.3|
|8. SOG BladeLight Hunt Fixed Blade w/ Light BLT20L-CP - Built-in 6 LEDs||3 2/3 inches||$$$||4.0|
|9. WatchFire Guthook Skinning Knife||4 inches||$||4.0|
|10. Mossy Oak Hunting Accessories Pro Hunter Skinning 4" MO-PHSK Knife Rubber Handle||4 inches||$||4.0|
Finding the Right Knife for the Job
Field dressing an animal is best done with a sturdy, sharp, and reliable knife. There are a number of different knives that are suited for the job, but some work better than others.
Here are some characteristics to look for when choosing a knife for field dressing game.
- A Sharp Point and Blade. A knife with a sharp point can easily puncture through hide, and a sharp blade will easily slice tough meat and sinew, making it easier to remove internal organs. A good knife will help you get the job done quickly, helping preserve the quality of the meat.
- Convenience. To assure prompt field dressing, you will need to be able to conveniently carry your field dressing knife with you into the woods. A folding knife should easily fit into your pocket, while a fixed blade should come with a sheath to conveniently attach to your belt allowing for easy access when it is needed.
- Durability. Because your field dressing knife has a tough job and will often have to endure rough circumstances, be sure to choose a blade that is made of durable materials.
- Non-Slip Handle. Because field dressing is bloody work, you need a knife that won’t slip around in your hand. Look for a textured handle that will help you grip your knife safely when your hands are slippery. You don’t want your hands to accidentally slip down the blade while gutting an animal.
- Blade Material. Most field dressing knives are made of either carbon steel or stainless steel. Carbon steel will hold an edge longer, ensuring that your blade is always sharp and ready to work. However, it is more susceptible to rusting than stainless steel, so you will have to take extra care in cleaning a carbon steel blade.
- Fixed or Folding Blades. A folding knife has a hinge that allows it to fold to a compact size and fits easily into a pocket for extra convenience. However, a folding knife can be more dangerous than a fixed blade, since there is always a chance of it slipping from a locked position while you are using it. If you choose a folding blade for field dressing, be sure to choose a model with a reliable locking mechanism to assure your safety.
- Blade Length. A good field dressing blade should be between 3 to 5 inches. A smaller blade will be more convenient for field dressing smaller game such as rabbits or squirrels. Choose a longer blade to use on big game.
Top 3 Best Field Dressing Knife Reviews
Buck knives are an American hunting tradition, and the quality and heritage of the company continue with this fixed blade knife. Made from 420HC steel, the strong blade holds a sharp edge for easy gutting and skinning. It is lightweight, weighing in at just over six ounces, making it convenient to carry, yet heavy enough for precise clean cutting.
This knife features a contoured handle and polished brass butt and guard which makes for safe maneuvering even when your hands are slippery. It also comes with an attractive genuine leather sheath that easily attaches to your belt so you can safely and securely carry it with you into the field.
The Buck Vanguard Fixed Blade Knife will remind you of an era long past when pride in craftsmanship and quality were valued above cheap production and cost. This is a knife that does the job well, but also one you’ll be proud to carry. It is definitely the best field dressing knife on the market today.
An amazing knife for an affordable price, the Gerber Moment comes razor sharp right out of the package. It is easy to re-sharpen, holds an edge well, and the featured gut hook zips right through any hide. Even the toughest blade snob will love this inexpensive yet quality blade.
This knife gets major bonus points for the textured rubber handle. It remains easy to grip even when covered in slick fat, and It manages being soaked in blood and fluid while remaining firm and grippy. It’s a quality you can only appreciate if you’ve ever tried to field dress game with a slippery knife. You’ll never have to worry about this knife slipping around in your hand. It stays right where you need it, so you can cut with the precision needed for field dressing. Try it and you’ll want this as a staple in your hunting gear for years to come.
This attractive knife comes with a genuine leather sheath for convenient carrying and extra blade protection. It slips right on your belt so you’ll always have a knife right at your fingertips. One of the most impressive features of the Case Medium Skinner is the polished leather handle which offers a firm grip even under slippery conditions.
Designed to stand up to years of outdoor use, this fixed blade knife features a concave ground swept blade made from special high-carbon stainless steel. It holds an edge longer than conventional steel, ensuring that you’ll never be stuck out in the woods with a dull knife. It also offers remarkable blade strength; however, it is more susceptible to rusting, pitting, and discoloration than stainless steel. You may want to keep a thin film of oil on the blade to maintain the finish. It is still a great blade, one that you’ll want to take the extra time to care for so you can use it for years to come.