Essential Fishing Knives Every Angler Should Consider Buying.

Fishing knives are essential when you are out on the water or standing at the water’s edge. These multifunctional tools fulfill an abundance of functions beyond cutting.

If you are in a hurry and want to know what the best fishing knives are, here are my top 4 choices:

  1. Gerber Gear Ultimate Knife, Fixed Blade Survival Knife with Firestarter.
  2. All in One Tools Mini Hammer Multitool For FIshing
  3. Buck Knives 110 Folding Hunter Lock-back Knife for Fishing.
  4. 12″ Tactical Bowie Survival Military Combat Hunting Knife.

Please note: “As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.”

With so many types of knives available, there is an abundance to choose from. This article lets us consider the types of fishing knives available. We will learn why particular ones should be considered and what should influence our buying. Every angler will need a knife when out fishing at some point, so having the right one will greatly benefit them.

Let’s start with the types of fishing knives available:

  1. Fixed blade knife/Bowie knife.
  2. Folding knives/pocket knives.
  3. Cordless electric knives.
  4. Survival/hunting/camping knives.
  5. Swiss Army – Multifunctional knives.
  6. Filleting knife.

Fixed blade knife/Bowie knife:

A fixed blade knife is a strong knife to carry when out fishing. The abilities to function on your behalf are many and they can fit nicely on the hip for carriage. I will keep mentioning it in this article, but do check the legal side of carrying one.

Folding knives/pocket knives:

Folding knives will be the most popular used knife by anglers. They fold up nice for carrying in the pockets and kit bags. Being able to fold up keeps the blade clean and less damaged long term thus requiring less maintenance. You just need to remember where you put the knife in your fishing gees to be able to use it.

Cordless electric knives:

This is not the first choice of many fishermen and is most likely the last type you consider. However, if you are trying to slice up frozen fish in readiness for a trip fishing, you may need one to do the job cleanly. Having one on board a fishing boat will also be handy, and it can be kept there for future use rather than carrying it each time. Just remember to charge it up as needed.

Survival/hunting/camping knives:

Many anglers will be out doing a little hunting when not fishing. Having a hunting or survival knife will allow for this and when off camping on trips with the family. Choosing the right knife can have great uses even when not fishing, as you can see.

Swiss Army – Multifunctional knives:

Probably the one fishing knife I would not be without on my trips. The multi-functionality and tools they carry are well worth the cost and carriage long term. My go-to knife suddenly needs to fix a problem and leaves all other knives fighting for second place. Consider what the multifunctional knife can do to help you when out fishing and see how long a list you can come up with.

Filleting knife:

When out fishing, you may not only want to cut fish up for bait, but you may wish to fillet the fish for consumption or storage. For the chef anglers of you out there, you know a good filleting knife when you use one, and they make the job so much easier.

Here is a fishing knife I would consider buying:

Gerber 30-000469 Dime Mini Multi-Tool, Black Fishing Knife Tool

Why I would consider buying this fishing knife: This multi-functional knife will provide you with 12 separate tools, all in one item.

  • Spring-loaded needlenose pliers, standard pliers, & wire cutters.
  • Tweezers.
  • Bottle opener.
  • Fine edge blade.
  • Retail package opener.
  • Scissors.
  • Medium flathead driver and a cross driver.
  • Coarse and fine file & lanyard ring.

Please note: “As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.”

Which knife is best for cutting fish?

For fishing purposes, the best knife would be a good quality fillet knife. This knife style will cut and shred the fish into correctly sized and shaped fishing bait portions. 

One additional knife to consider would be a rechargeable electric knife to cut through frozen fish when out on a boat trip.

What makes a good fishing knife?

With the different scenarios possible for a knife to be used when fishing, it isn’t easy to pinpoint what would typically make a good fishing knife. However, below is my criteria when selecting my knives for my fishing trips.

Here’s what makes a good fishing knife:-

  • Sharpness
  • Size of blade
  • Multiple blades/tools
  • Durability
  • Corrosion-resistant
  • Safe to use and store
  • Legal to carry in my area

Can I carry a knife for fishing?

Yes, you can carry a knife for fishing. Having a fishing knife while fishing or on the way to or from fishing is perfectly acceptable. Just be sensible, keep it stored, and don’t wave it around so people can see it. 

With the ways the law seems to change, you may wish to confirm with them if you are carrying a large hunting knife for your fishing if you have any doubt. Some areas may have laws against that, but I doubt it.

What angle do you hold a fishing knife to sharpen it?

The majority of fishing knives should be sharpened to a 17 to 20-degree angle, but this can be 20-22 with some types. The angle can vary from brand to brand and knife blade styling. Check the blade with care and test the sharpness as you proceed through the sharpening process. Mind your fingers!

What is the best pocket knife for fishing?

The best pocket knife for fishing, especially for a young angler, would be a multifunctional knife. This type of fishing knife will have multiple short length blades and additional tools usable when out fishing.

What are fishing knives used for?

Fishing knives are multifunctional pieces of fishing equipment.

Here’s what fishing knives are used for:

  • Cutting and preparing of bait
  • Cutting fishing line
  • Trimming knots
  • Preparing your food
  • Cutting vegetation to clear a swim
  • Cut branches for a campfire

Factors that will influence your fishing knife selection:

  1. Size.
  2. Corrosion / salt-water resistant.
  3. Legality to carry.
  4. Your age. It would be best if you were safe enough and old enough.
  5. Safety and experience.
  6. Brand preference.

Size of fishing knife:

When you have already fished a particular location, you understand what you are likely to encounter. What you will encounter can affect your knife choice for taking fishing. For example, if you are fishing on a boat, you are more likely to need a bait fillet knife than a Bowie knife. Or, if you are out trekking with fishing mixed in, you would more likely need the Bowie knife. Each knife will have functionality characteristics that will influence your decision. The size will be one factor as it may not be easy to carry a large knife with you on a particular trip. Your location fishing may not legally allow you to carry your normal fishing knife. Remember to check the legal side and don’t presume.

Corrosion / salt-water resistant fishing knife:

Most fishing knives will automatically be corrosion-resistant and suitable for use in saltwater situations. However, although the blade section itself will be, the hand and handle fittings may not. Often manufacturers will forget that the rivets fastening the handgrip to the blade are not suitable. Not all occasions and long term exposure to saltwater will be good. As always, you need to check and take off your knife whilst owning it.

Fishing knife legality to carry:

Not all locations will allow you to carry a bladed item over a specific length. Just having a blade exceeding the specific law in your area can lead to legal repercussions. You may wish to check the legality to ensure your compliance at all times. This is particularly the case when fishing in a different state or country. Don’t guess, go and check the legality online.

Your age in relation to fishing knives:

Let’s face it; if you are a child, you should not be carrying a knife when fishing. That is unless you are with a supervising adult and have been trained in handling the knife. Parents are responsible for their children, and therefore, it is their decision as to whether you can carry one when still a child.

Safety and experience with fishing knives:

Just because you are old enough to carry a knife when out fishing does not mean you are safe enough to do so. Having a sharp fishing knife carries responsibility issues with it. This is not necessarily for the safety of others but for your own safety. Many fingers have been cut badly by people not knowing how to cut their fishing bait correctly. Fishing knives are obviously sharp, and unless you use a protective glove, you can get hurt.

Fishing knife brand preference:

Many anglers are often brand orientated when it comes to particular aspects of their fishing tackle and gear. This can also be the case with the fishing knives, but for a little less so. Getting the right knife to do the job I require of it is the main function here. Don’t be tempted to buy your brand name knife if it’s not going to do what you need of it. Think twice and buy once.

Here is a fishing knife I would consider buying:

Gerber Gear Ultimate Knife, Fixed Blade Survival Knife with Fire Starter

Why I would consider buying this fishing knife: When you’re braving the great outdoors, it’s about working smarter, not harder. That sentiment is reflected in the knowledge you possess but also the tools you choose to bring along. (Source)

  • The Gerber Ultimate Survival Fixed Blade Knife features a 4 75 In partially serrated drop point blade ideal for edge retention and cutting.
  • The ergonomic textured rubber handle provides a non-slip grip for comfortable, precise handling, which is essential when wet.
  • The stainless steel pommel at the handle’s base can serve as a hammer for that unexpected multifunctional requirement.
  • A Ferrocerium Rod Fire Starter locks into the sheath, and a striker notch is incorporated into the back of the blade for when needed if camping out whilst fishing.
  • The click-retention nylon sheath includes an integrated sharpener for on-the-go edge adjustments keeping the blade clean and sharp when needed.

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When will a fishing knife be needed?:

  1. Cutting bait.
  2. Slicing and trimming fishing line.
  3. Removing hooks caught in clothing.
  4. Protection of oneself.
  5. Cutting vegetation.
  6. Preparing meals.

Fishing knife for cutting bait:

This is probably not as straight forward a factor as it may seem. There are different types of fishing baits used that will influence your decision. For example, if sea fishing, you are likely to be using fish. Now, will the fish be fresh or frozen when being cut? The knife needed for either will be different to do the same job—a simple example but a clearly important one.

Slicing and trimming fishing line:

|All anglers end up in a tangle at some point and having a good sharp fishing knife to get it sorted quickly and is a great tool to have. For finer work such as trimming a knotted end, a knife may not be an obvious choice. Still, a multifunctional pocket knife will have small scissors built in to do the job nicely. this is why considering which fishing knife to purchase is important to get the right one or two for the tasks needed.

Removing hooks caught in clothing:

Barbed hooks seem to catch on everything when you are a little sleepy first thing in the morning. How they sometimes end up snagged in some places, I will never know. When they get hooked in the wrong place, you may need to cut the material to get the hook out carefully. Having the right knife for the job will mean less damage to the snagged item.

Fishing knife for protection of oneself:

Hopefully, your fishing knife will never be needed for this aspect. However, strange situations can occur most unexpectedly, and there are many forms of wildlife other than can be a potential problem. Stay safe and be careful.

Cutting vegetation:

Occasionally when I fish, a swim (spot) may need to trim a little of the vegetation back to fish properly. I do so with the minimum effect on the vegetational growth around me, I assure you. Doing this will reduce the chance of snagging your line and tackle unexpectedly. Could your fishing knife do the necessary job in this situation?

Preparing meals:

It may seem an odd aspect, but can you use your knife cleanly and safely to chop up food for your lunch to minimize carriage? I use one that does the job nicely when fishing overnight sessions on a lake near where I live. A correctly chosen fishing knife will have multi-functions, and some of them you have not thought of.

Here is a fishing knife I would consider buying:

Buck Knives 110 Folding Hunter Lock-back Knife For Fishing

Why I would consider buying this fishing knife: This knife has been a top seller for over 5o years.

  • Model – 110 Slim Pro
  • Steel – S30V
  • Overall length – 4 7/8″ Closed
  • Blade length – 3 3/4″
  • Weight – 3.2oz
  • Knife type – Everyday carry
  • Blade type – Modified clip point
  • Handle – Micarta
  • Carry system – Reversible and removable deep carry pocket clip.
  • Blade thickness – 0.120″

Please note: “As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.”

Essential Fishing Knives Article Conclusion: 

Thank you for taking the time to read my article on essential fishing knives. I hope you have enjoyed this article and that the information provided has been of great help to you.

If you have found this page to be of help to you, it would be awesome to share this page with me. (Thank you).

Good luck in your future purchases and I hope the above details will be much enjoyed.

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