Users know the Machete is the ultimate outdoor and survival tool: tough, versatile, affordable. Users know that no single edged weapon can out-cut or out-chop a good Kukri: solid, versatile, strong.
See reviews below.
Weight: 16 oz.
COLD STEEL KUKRI MACHETE $20
Two Wolves Tested!
We tested the Cold Steel Kukri Machete in the field. It gave a performance compatible with the Cold Steel LTC model. The factory edge was amazingly sharp, cutting thru branches, brambles and stems like they were made of foam. The Kukri Machete is lighter than the more expensive models but demonstrated the same balance and power. The elegant kukri design gives it the kukri versatility: cut your wood for the fire, cut up your meat and flip it on the grill all with one blade! (hey, we are from Texas, we like to grill)
STEEL KUKRI MACHETE Review
Joezilla in the Field
KukrisÖ Many do not know much about them, except that sometimes they can be down right expensive. Iím a machete nut, but Iíve wanted to try out a Kukri for a while. About a year ago, RobG on the forums sent me a HI Kukri to re-sharpen. It was pretty hard, but after I got the edge, I had to try it out. I was completely impressed with its chopping power. This Cold Steel Kukri machete is now the second Kukri that I had the pleasure of trying out.
Cold Steel has been getting a lot of press associated with their hype on some of their other knives, but Iíve been more interested in their more economical knives. I found that the Latin machete was too flimsy, so when I was waiting for this Kukri machete, I was worried that it would be the same. I was pleased to find a solid design and a thick spine, an overall design that could take a beating.
Kukri Machete Specs:
Weight: 16 oz.
Suggested Retail Price: $24.99
The weight of the Kukri machete is great, not too heavy or unwieldy; it doesnít put stress on the forearm like heavy chopping models Iíve worked with. Albeit a little getting used to, but once you find that sweet spot on the blade that makes the notorious Kukri chop, it really shines once the technique has been mastered.
The handle is of a more contemporary Kukri design, lacking the rings, tang caps and buttons of more classic Kukris and being made out of a checkered thermoplastic. I was disappointed in the texture of the handle, but I found that about 3 seconds with some 80-grit sandpaper took the harsher checkering down. There is horizontal jigging along the sides of the handle, they did not present a problem like the checkering did. The polypropylene handle itself stood up to abuse and drops; high temperatures at the edge of the fire; and salt and other chemicals very well. There was no discoloration, fading, or abrading of any of the finer edges due to use or rattling around in the back of the Jeep.
The blade edge, like any large chopping tool in this price range, needed a tiny bit of a touch up when I received it. It had a modest edge, but I chose to use a hand sanding pad to work it back to the bevel it was set at. You could easily use a file too. About two seconds with a diamond hone would also give it a biting edge. It took the edge from the sanding pad very well, and was easy to work with. Even those without belt sanders could produce a fine working edge on this blade. I couldnít resist the temptation though, the edge took to screaming sharp after a belt sanding treatment. It only took half the time to get a good edge that other factory choppers take. The bevel was set well from the factory. The Kukri has a black coating, which did very well to protect it. Even in the salty environment of the Florida Keys, the rust was very minimal.
The Sheath is a Taiwan sheath, and does well to hold the knife safely. Thatís about it though, as it becomes tangled when you try to take the knife out of the sheath or wear it on your belt. This Kukri might be a good candidate for a PVC sheath as well. Maybe a baldric rigging of some sorts would help facilitate this type of knife.
ALL TERRAIN! FROM THE JUNGLE TO THE MOUNTAINS
The overall handiness of this workhorse is outstanding. Once you get use to the feel of the handle, it really powers its way through the undergrowth. In the piedmont region of North Carolina, you may hear a few hunters cussing at catbriers and blackberry vines throughout their walk to the stand. The Kukri machete cut through them well; it does even better with hardier vines . Grape vine clearing proved to be no challenge to the Kukri.
I was able to check out this beetle bored hole deep within this aged cedar. Still could not ID what beetle made it, but held onto it for the Forest entomology guys.
Well, not technically jungle, but some of the sub tropical environments of the everglades and Keys of Florida come darn close.
The Kukri accompanied me on the latest snake hunting trip to the Keys, and it was lent out to friends to see what they thought. Kevin was immediately impressed with the knife. His love of Kukris showing as his eyes glowed when it was unveiled. Similar reactions were shared among other buddies in the group, mostly to the size and shape of the blade.
I ended up getting tangled in odd vines, these werenít like normal cat briers of NC, these were thick, meaty thorny vines that went through by pants and boots like they were butter.
With tropical regions come tropical trees, and what kind of tropical diet would lack coconuts. Coconuts can be the bane of your existence if you donít have something to smash them open with. Luckily with the Kukri, this wasnít the case.
We were opening up coconuts like a Caribbean street vendor. The soft outsides hacked right off, and the forward weight of the Kukri pummeled into the coconuts like the Hulk through a brick wall. We were also able to just nick the top off and use the point of the Kukri to extract the sweet juice out of there. The obtuse point of the knife was not too wide, it was still able to dig out the top and do things that a normal knife would be used for. It would be neat to do a thick blade versus thin blade comparison of larger knives on coconuts.
Adrian sports the grin of a happy camper.
The use of big knives for cleaning small animals makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. And it makes me hungry. In the Keys we used spears to grab some tasty invertebrates and fish for our camp.
Both Adrian and Kevin used the Kukri for all the food preparation. Adrian cleaned the fish easily with the large knife. By choking up on the broad blade end, the fish could be split open and the guts were pulled out. The Kukri functioned well as a scaler too, and we munched on the fish for the rest of the night.
Kevin prepped smaller dead saplings to get a hot fire going. The Kukri did well for smaller chopping operations. With the use of a chopping block, it was able to lop straight cuts through 1Ē diameter saplings as well. The back of the Kukri was used to smash these urchins and small guts for use in an improvised crab trap.
The Cold Steel Kukri machete was then used for spiny lobster preparation. The abdomen was separated from the cephalothorax cleanly, with just a light tap on the back of the blade to go through the exoskeleton. Kevin then proceeded to cut a horizontal line along the somites (those scutes on the tail) to let it cook thoroughly. It easily pried open the crab carapace as well. The Kukri was used for a variety of other chores on the trip too, and turned out to be a great hit among the participants. This Kukri was one heck of a camp knife.
In the mountains of North Carolina, the Cold Steel Kukri machete accompanied me on many hikes. The large blade did well for dispatching invasive Bradford pears along the path. It lopped off smaller branches easily to make room for taking the spiny wooden devil down the old fashion way. In a power line clearing, I was able to find all the downed trees I needed to test on, instead of cutting down perfectly healthy trees. Sourwood, oaks, cedar, and pines all fell prey to the knife. I was extremely impressed with the chopping ability of the Kukri design. It had a completely different feel to it, as opposed to other large straight bladed knives. The blade angle dug in remarkably to the hard to the wood for such a thin blade, and didnít glance at all. You can attribute this to the weight forward design a Kukri has. This large tree was chopped in half in just minutes with the Kukri.
Over the centuries, the Kukri has proven itself and earned a reputation for a great versatile chopper. The Cold Steel Kukri machete opens itself up to a much wider spectrum of uses rather than just chopping, and will perform excellently in most environments. This knife, coupled with a small knife, can really get things done all over the US. Make no mistake, the other Kukris that Cold Steel and Himalayan Imports have are well worth their price. Iím glad that I was able to try out this design. If this is any indication of what other Kukris are to be like, I canít wait to try out some other models. I liked this Kukri so much that I got Kevin one as well.
A special Thanks goes out to Adrian Yirka and Kevin Messenger for input and knife usage in this article.
Review by Joe Flowers (aka Joezilla).
Used with permission.
Thank you Joe!