When looking for a tactical knife, there are so many different things to consider: brand, serrated edge vs. straight edge, folding knife vs. fixed knife, and size of the blade. Each of these characteristics change up what the knife is ideal for. Today I’ve compiled a list of the best tactical knives that you can buy today. Let’s get started.
The Kershaw Blur Glassbreaker Knife:
This blade measures at 3 3/8 inches long and the knife weighs only 4 ounces, which is light enough to be a fantastic option for an everyday carry knife. The handle is made out of anodized aluminum, with Trac-Tec grip tape inserts that provide a crazy good grip while handling this knife. The knife has a Sandvik crafted recurve blade that is partially serrated; the serrations on this blade come in handy when you need to cut something such as rope. This blade is crazy sharp. Something truly unique about this knife is that it has a built in glass breaker The glass breaker is made out of carbide and is directly attached to the end of the handle. This glass breaker is able to break through almost any glass type, including reinforced car glass. This knife is easy to open, even one handed, because it has a SpeedSafe assisted opening mechanism. A bonus with this blade is that it comes with a lifetime warranty from Kershaw. Plus, this specific Kershaw knife is made in the United States of America, something that many knife owners want and are looking for in their knives.
Advantages of the Kershaw Blur Glassbreaker knife:
- Made fully in the USA.
- Comes with a Kershaw lifetime warranty.
- Has a built in carbide glass breaker.
- Only weighs four ounces, making it the perfect everyday carry knife.
- Boasts Trac-Tec grip tape inserts to provide the perfect grip.
- Has a partially serrated blade.
- The blade is crazy sharp.
- Easy to open one handed because it has the SpeedSafe mechanism.
Disadvantages of the Kershaw Blur Glassbreaker knife:
- The opening stud isn’t designed perfectly.
The Cold Steel Recon 1 Tactical Knife:
This knife is ready to take on almost any challenge with its four-inch blade made out of Japanese Aus 8A stainless steel. This steel is vacuum heat treated and sub-zero quenched supplying the knife with fantastic durability. Then, the blade is coated in a black Tuff-Ex layer that works to resist anything. This coating fights against rust, it doesn’t let light reflect off of it—making it a perfect option for your tactical operations, and the coating works to provide a lubrication. The handle sports G10 handle scales that work to provide you with an amazing grip, almost like your hand is sticking to the handle. Another unique aspect of this knife is its reversible, stainless steel pocket clip. The pocket clip and the fact that the knife only weighs 5.2 ounces makes this an amazing everyday carry knife because it’s just that easy to constantly have with you. The knife boasts a Tri Ad locking system, which is a locking mechanism specific to Cold Steel. This locking system locks the blade into an open position with it’s tough lever that is on the back of the handle. This knife also comes in micro, mini, and extra-large versions.
Advantages of the Cold Steel Recon 1 Tactical Knife:
- G10 handle scales give stellar grip.
- Has Cold Steel’s Tri Ad locking system, guaranteeing you with a sturdy lock.
- Only weighs 5.2 ounces.
- Comes in different sized versions of itself.
- Has a Tuff-Ex black coating that resists everything from rust to reflecting light.
- Reasonable price.
Disadvantages of the Cold Steel Recon 1 Tactical Knife:
- This knife has been reported to roughing up people’s pockets.
The Smith and Wesson Border Guard 2 Rescue Knife:
A lot of tactical knives also have one or two other purposes, such as hunting, self-defense, maybe even fishing. What sets the Border Guard 2 apart from these knives is that the Border Guard 2 is truly designed to be a complete and total tactical knife. Some unique aspects of the Border Guard 2 are a safety belt cutter that is built into the handle. The handle already sports a glass breaking pommel. These two unique aspects make this knife an ideal candidate for safety and rescue workers, and so far they haven’t even had to open the blade. The tanto blade is 4.4 inches of 440C stainless steel. The blade is partially serrated, which makes it perfect for slicing and also sawing through rope. The blade is locked into place using its liner lock. The handle of this knife is made out of aircraft aluminum that has been textured to provide the user with an impeccable grip. The handle also sports an aluminum pocket clip. This knife is also one of the more inexpensive options, but it has just as much quality to it as the more expensive options, it might even be better. While this blade has been designed to serve almost any tactical purpose under the sun, this knife makes a fantastic every day carry blade as well. You never know when you are going to need the extras that call this knife home.
Advantages of the Smith and Wesson Border Guard 2 Rescue Knife:
- Has a built in safety belt cutter.
- Has a built in glass breaker.
- This is an ideal option for rescue workers to own.
- This is an ideal candidate for your every-day carry knife.
- The handle has fantastic grip.
- The liner lock keeps the blade securely locked into place.
- This is one of the more inexpensive options that you can buy, but it definitely doesn’t seem like a cheap option.
Disadvantages of the Smith and Wesson Border Guard 2 Rescue Knife:
- While the liner lock does work well, it can feel stiff, especially when the knife is first purchased.
The Spyderco Assist Black Blade:
This knife stands out from the pack because of its truly unique shape of blade. The blade of this knife is blunt-tipped, which helps make it unbreakable. But, because this is blunt-tipped, you cannot stab anyone. Why would anyone buy a blunt-tipped knife? This makes it a fantastic option for firefighters, EMT’s, and anyone else who is going to be working in a cramped area that doesn’t want to harm anyone or anything. The blade is serrated and on the unsharpened edge of the blade, it has finger grooves. This is another unique aspect that other knives do not have. This finger grooves are very shallow and make that edge of the blade look wavy. You can hold on to the backside of the knife to add grip and then saw through things more quickly. The blade is made out of VG-10, making this a very durable blade and knife. Adding to the list of unique characteristics, this knife sports a patented Cobra Hood grip, that helps to guide your finger to the deployment button so that even in the dark or without looking, you do not have to fumble for the deployment button. But wait, there’s more. The Spyderco Assist also features a retractable carbide tip that is designed to break glass. It also has a survival whistle that is built directly into the handle. This is a truly unique and remarkable knife that I would recommend to anyone looking for the perfect rescue knife. I couldn’t think of anything else that I would want to add, because it already has everything.
Advantages of the Spyderco Assist Black Blade:
- Features a glass breaker.
- Features a rescue/alert whistle.
- The patented Cobra Hood grip guides your finger to the deployment button so that there is no searching and wasting time.
- The knife has a blunt tip blade, making it the perfect rescue knife, because you can be in cramped spaces and not have to worry about harming anyone or anything.
- The blade is very durable.
- The serrated edge is perfect for sawing through rope.
- The unsharpened edge of the blade has shallow finger grooves, giving you extra grip when sawing.
Disadvantages of the Spyderco Assist Black Blade:
- This knife is designed for rescue, so many of its characteristics make it pointless in other situations.
- Would be an awful option for self-defense.
- It is almost 8 and a half inches long, which does make it a little bit large.
The Benchmade Contego Folding Knife:
The four-inch blade on this knife is made out of CPM-M4 steel, that you can get in gray or black. This steel is high quality steel that won’t dull, nick, or chip. The thickness of this blade is 0.156, which is actually thinner than most tactical knives, however, because it is thinner, you can get it way sharper. The steel on this blade holds an incredible edge for long periods of time and who has time to sharpen their knife in survival situations? Having the extra sharpness means that you can cut through tougher things such as rope. The blade is a combo blade, meaning half of it is straight edge and the other is serrated. The serrations come in when the sharpness won’t cut it, because you can get a sawing motion going, such as cutting a tree branch. However, you can get this knife without the serrations, if that is what you prefer. The handle of this knife includes a carbide tip that is made to break through glass. The handle is made out of G-10 that has been textured to provide you with a fantastic no-slip grip. A unique thing that the Benchmade Contego has is the AXIS locking mechanism. This lock is extremely tough and hard to break, in fact, it can withstand up to 800 pounds of pressure before it breaks. However, after time, this locking mechanism will begin to work a little bit less. A bummer about this knife is how expensive it is.
Advantages of the Benchmade Contego Folding Knife:
- Can get it with a combo blade or just a plain straight edge blade.
- The blade is a little thinner than most tactical knives, but what you give up in thickness, you definitely gain in sharpness.
- The steel is high quality, durable steel.
- The knife has a built in glass breaker, perfect for survival or rescue purposes.
- The handle has amazing no-slip grip.
- The AXIS locking mechanism can withstand 800 pounds of pressure before it fails.
Disadvantages of the Benchmade Contego Folding Knife:
- This is a pretty expensive knife.
- The AXIS locking system has its perks, but it definitely isn’t the best locking mechanism out there.
- Over time, the AXIS locking mechanism will slowly start to break down and not work as quality as it did before.
The Ka-Bar Full Size US Marine Corps Fighting Knife:
This knife has been considered one of the most famous fixed blade knives in the world. This knife has been around since World War Two when it was designed for the US troops. It has been changed a little bit since World War Two, but it is still made in the USA, which some knife owners search for when purchasing. The blade is made out of 1095 Cro-Van steel, which is a tough and durable steel. The thickness of the blade is 0.165 inches and the length of the blade is 7-inches long. This blade is a straight edge blade, giving you perfectly clean cuts every time. One of the unique characteristics of this knife is that the handle is made with genuine leather, adding a very aesthetically pleasing aspect to the knife. The sheath that comes with this knife is also made out of leather. This is a simple design that gets the job done.
Advantages of the Ka-Bar Full Size US Marine Corps Fighting Knife:
- The handle is genuine leather, helping the knife look very classy.
- This knife has been around since World War 2, so you know you can trust it.
- Made in the USA.
- This is the most famous fixed blade knives in the world.
- Very durable and very sharp blade.
- Comes with a leather sheath.
- Simple, straightforward design.
Disadvantages of the Ka-Bar Full Size US Marine Corps Fighting Knife:
- The simple design doesn’t have any special add-ons.
Tactical knives come in many different shapes and sizes and have all kinds of characteristics that make them unique. While the large variety is a blessing, it can also be a curse when you aren’t sure what you are looking for or what you want in your knife. Hopefully this list of the six best tactical knives will help narrow down your search and get you exactly what you want and need.