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Best Skinning Knives

Expert Reviews & Buying Guide

quadcopter reviewsBest Skinning Knives

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How to Choose the Best Skinning Knife

If you’re looking for the perfect way to skin your kill after a big hunting trip, you’ve probably owned, used, or borrowed a skinner and wondered about what makes the best skinning knife. Well, you’re in luck because we’ve wondered that, too. That’s why we did the research and put together these skinning knife reviews. Before we get started, let’s take a closer look at some of the features you should keep in mind while you’re looking.

Best Skinning Knives

Blade Length: Match the blade to the size of the animal you’re hunting. For example, a 3-inch blade is great for a rabbit. A 6-inch blade or longer is best for large game like elk or moose.

Best Skinning Knives

Total Length: Total length is the length of the blade plus the length of the handle. This is an important measurement because it will tell you exactly how long a knife you’re working with and where you can keep it.

How to Choose the Best Skinning Knife

Folding: Depending on what you’re using it for, folding knives can be really convenient. They’re compact, easy to carry, and can go just about anywhere. Plus, they work. That said, their blades are usually on the smaller side.

Best Skinning Knives

Sheath: A sheath is particularly important, especially if you have a knife with a fixed blade. It covers the blade to protect it from the elements when it’s not in use but also to protect you from any chance of injury.

Best Skinning Knives

Handle Material: Handle material varies from various plastics to rubber to deer bone. Whichever you choose, make sure you’re comfortable using it. It’s also a good idea to get one that’s easy to clean since it will likely get very messy.

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Pieces: For this spec, we didn’t include sheaths. What do we mean by that? If you see a 1 here, it means there’s 1 knife. If you see 3, it means it’s a set of 3. Yes, we included some awesome sets, too.

Top 10 Products

Now that we cut through our skinning knife buying guide, let’s get right into our reviews. If you’re in a hurry and don’t have the time to read all the way through, check out our top and budget picks. They’re right at the top of our list and a great way to get an idea of what’s out there. But stick around if you can! Our list is filled with great products from top to bottom. Okay, let’s jump right in!

Havalon Piranta Z Knife

Havalon Piranta Z Knife
Our top pick is the best deer skinning knife in the bunch. The Havalon Piranta Z Skinning Knife is a great knife and one of the only folding knives on our list. The handle is perfect. What do we mean by that? It’s long, wide, and has a great grip. It’s made of plastic and has rubber side panels for better grip. We really like the thumb studs because it allows for fast, one-handed opening. You really get a lot of control with this knife. The blade is awesome, too. It’s razor-sharp and, if it does get dull, you never have to sharpen it. You’re probably wondering how that’s possible. Well, all you do it snap on a new one! There’s even a great safety feature, too, a liner lock.
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Old Timer Full Tang Knife

Old Timer Full Tang Knife
The Old Timer Full Tank Knife is our pick for best elk skinning knife as well as our budget pick. It has a full tang and a fixed blade. It’s small, but don’t let that fool you. The upswept blade is really effective and the perfect shape for skinning. Why do we say that? Because of its shape, it has a larger cutting surface that makes it just as effective as a larger knife without the excess weight and bulk. At first glance, this one might not look effective but its size really is very deceptive. The handle is made of delrin, a special plastic that helps you keep control even when its wet. The edges are rounded and it’s designed with great ergonomics that keep the blade steady and comfortable.
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Elk Ridge Hunting Knife

Elk Ridge Hunting Knife
This set from Elk Ridge is actually good skinning knife and a get hook. Let’s start with the skinning knife. It has a 7 inch blade and a ABS handle. ABS plastic is really resistant to physical damage which makes it a great choice for a knife like this. There’s a place for a lanyard, too, if you want to keep this one close to you at all time. That’s not all, the handle has an awesome camo design and a textured grip. The gut hook has the same type of handle and a 6 ½ inch blade. Both feature full tang black stainless 440 steel blades. What makes this a great metal for knives because it’s made with more carbon. Why does that matter? It makes them super hard and helps them keep their edge.
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Buck Knives Field Master Kit

Buck Knives Field Master Kit
The Buck Knives Field Master Kit is the best hunting skinning knife set around. It comes with a gut hook, skinning blade, and caping blade. The skinner has a 3 ½ inch blade, the caper 2 ½ inch, and the gut hook is 4 inches long. They’re all made of stainless steel which makes them lightweight and precise and resistant to corrosion. Not only that but they all maintain their edge really well. Plus, they’re easy to clean because they’re all one piece. You might be wondering how that’s possible. It’s because they all have cutouts to help you get a good grip on the bare handle end. They come with a sheath that holds all 3 knives. And get this. It has removable liners for easy cleaning and an adjustable belt strap for easy carrying.
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Bone Collector Skinning Knife

Bone Collector Skinning Knife
The best skinning knife for deer is the Bone Collector Skinning Knife. In addition to being a great knife, it looks particularly awesome, too. These knives are handmade and have a 4 inch blade and a 3 inch handle. Get this: the handle is made out of deer bone. That’s not all, it also comes in 4 different designs: red bone, yellow bone, blue bone, and black brown. Plus, it’s accented with brass and rivets that only add to its good looks. The blade itself has a full tang, saw tooth back, and get hook. It only weighs 9 ounces and it really easy to carry and use. One more thing, the sheath is gorgeous. It’s made of hand tooled leather. Overall, this is a gorgeous knife that’s as functional as it is beautiful.
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WatchFire Guthook Knife

WatchFire Guthook Knife
Next up for top skinning knife is the WatchFire Guthook Skinning Knife. One thing we really like about this one is how it looks. The whole thing is black, the blade, the handle, and the sheath. It has a really impressive, sleek look to it. The blade is made of coated stainless steel and includes a gut hook. The handle is rubberized and textured for a firm grip which comes in handy when things get a little messy. If you want to attach it to a lanyard, it’s really easy to do. Use the lanyard hole and you can keep it close for when you need it. This is a great tool and the size puts it in the running for best hog skinning knife of the ones that we researched.
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Gerber Moment Field Dress Kit

Gerber Moment Field Dress Kit
The Gerber Moment Field Dress Kit is the best skinning knife for small game. Well, the 2 best skinning knives because they really work well as a set. Each knife has a steel blade and a nylon handle with a rubber overmold. There are grooves in the handles that make them really comfortable to hold. The small knife is about 7 inches long with a 3 ¼ inch blade. The larger one is about 8 ? inches long with a 3 ? inch blade with a gut hook. Each has a full tang, fine edge, and glass bead finish. That’s not all. Because these knives are a team, you can sheath them together. They come with a nylon sheath with metal snaps that holds them both snugly in place.
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Victorinox Beef Skinning Blade

Victorinox Beef Skinning Blade
Now, this is a pretty awesome knife. You can look at it and just know it’s awesome. The Victorinox Beef Skinning Blade as a curved 6 inch blade that makes it really versatile. It’s made of stainless steel and has a simple, sharp edge that withstands corrosion. You shouldn’t have to sharpen this one as often as you do other knives. The handle is pretty cool, it has a durable grip that holds up to sweat and other messes. Plus, it’s ergonomically designed which makes it nice to hold and easy to use. It comes with a carrying sheath that you can attach to your belt, boot, or anywhere else. This blade can be used on just about any animal but it’s a stellar deer skinning knife. And get this: it even comes with a warranty.
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Elk Ridge Hunting Knife

Here’s another awesome hunting knife set that has exactly what you need if you’re a hunter. There are 2 knives, one with a fixed blade and one that folds. The fixed blade is 8 ½ inches long with a 4 inch blade and has a get hook on the back. The folder has a 4 ¼ inch long handle and a 3 ¾ inch blade. It’s about 5 inches long when folded up. Each one has a 440 stainless steel blade which is a really great metal for this kind of knife. It has a high carbon content and it heated to become the hardest of any grade of stainless steel. It also stands up to corrosion and abrasions. Plus, it’s resistant to air and water so you don’t have to worry about this one rusting.
Here’s another awesome hunting knife set that has exactly what you need if you’re a hunter. There are 2 knives, one with a fixed blade and one that folds. The fixed blade is 8 ½ inches long with a 4 inch blade and has a get hook on the back. The folder has a 4 ¼ inch long handle and a 3 ¾ inch blade. It’s about 5 inches long when folded up. Each one has a 440 stainless steel blade which is a really great metal for this kind of knife. It has a high carbon content and it heated to become the hardest of any grade of stainless steel. It also stands up to corrosion and abrasions. Plus, it’s resistant to air and water so you don’t have to worry about this one rusting.
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Gerber Vital Skin Knife

For a knife that’s a little different than the other products on this list, check out the Gerber Vital Skin and Gut Knife. The interesting look is actually all by design. What do we mean by that? For starters, the blade was designed with unique contouring that makes it really easy to use, saving you a lot of time and energy. What’s so special about it? It’s round! It also has really great edge retention and it’s equipped with a gut hook. It’s really designed to work with the natural movements of your body. The handle is made of orange polymer covered in black rubber. There are also rubber grips right along the palm portion of the ergonomically designed handle so you get a good grip while you work.
For a knife that’s a little different than the other products on this list, check out the Gerber Vital Skin and Gut Knife. The interesting look is actually all by design. What do we mean by that? For starters, the blade was designed with unique contouring that makes it really easy to use, saving you a lot of time and energy. What’s so special about it? It’s round! It also has really great edge retention and it’s equipped with a gut hook. It’s really designed to work with the natural movements of your body. The handle is made of orange polymer covered in black rubber. There are also rubber grips right along the palm portion of the ergonomically designed handle so you get a good grip while you work.
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