From skinning elk and gutting fish to pruning a branch or two for kindling, the fixed blade handles everything. It’s arguably the most basic of multi-tools; design and looks take a backseat to function when it comes to such a tool, but it doesn’t hurt to sport a little style and slick design, too. Most modern blades err on the side of tactical, but if you want a little form with your function, a vintage blade is the way to go. We corralled up a few favorites that we recently came across — sharp blades, old-school grit — to keep you sharp on your next nature outing.
Western USA Hunting Knife
What we like: The style and patina of this blade exudes a certain Americana vibe you can’t get in a modern blade.
From the seller: “This vintage Western USA hunting fixed-blade knife with leather sheath is in good condition. The knife blade is 4 1/2 inches long with total length of 8 3/4 inches. ”
Blade Length: 4.5 inches
Location: West Lafayette, Indiana
Shrade-Walden 148 Hunting Knife
What we like: Nothing beats a good, ol’-fashioned buck knife.
From the seller: “Clean for an old bugger. Good shape, too. Not much wear to the blade, just age and occasional use. Does have the usual staining, light pits and scuffs and scratches. I tried to keep it oiled and clean over the years.”
Blade Length: 4.75 inches
Location: Saco, Maine
K-Ritter hubertus Solingen
What we like: The condition and craftsmanship of this blade is great to look at, let alone use.
From the seller: “This is a very rare K-Ritter knife in very good condition. Kuno Ritter was the owner of the company, which later on would become Hubertus knife company. I researched this a while back when I had acquired another Ritter knife.”
Blade Length: 3.75 inches
Location: Houghton, Iowa
Marbles Hunting Knife
What we like: With the rich history that comes with the Marbles brand, this blade would make a great addition to any collection, and at a close-to-nothing price.
From the seller: “Blade is in good condition. Has some blemishes but they should polish out. The knife has its original luster. Leather handle in good condition with brass guard and rings.”
Blade Length: 5 inches
Location: Bedford, Texas
Indian Ridge Traders Bowie Knife
What we like: With a sturdy construction, hilt and handle, this bowie promises confidence on your next camping trip.
From the seller: “Made in Sheffield, England. Stag horn handle. ”
Blade Length: 6 inches
Location: Milford, Michigan