Top 5 Things to Consider When Buying a Machete
Are you thinking about purchasing a machete soon? If so, read on to learn the five things to consider when buying a machete.
When you hear the word "machete" what do you imagine? The horror movies depicting crazy, deranged characters wielding these, trying to eliminate innocent bystanders? Or, people in the jungles cutting through brush and vines?
For years, these have been the stereotypical uses for machetes; however, today, these blades have many other uses. They are considered the ultimate multi-tool, which makes it an invaluable purchase.
Are you thinking about purchasing a machete? Regardless of if you want it for survival situations, practical purposes, or just to show off, getting to know what is available is a must.
Keep reading to learn what to consider when making this purchase.
1. Machete Blade Style
For most people, one of the most important characteristics of the machete is the shape of the blade. This varies based on what you plan to use it for.
A machete is used on a regular basis in many rural parts of the world. As a result, styles and names vary greatly and sometimes overlap. For example, the Rawit style is also called Kukri and the Golok may be called a Sable. The name you hear depends on where you are.
In many cases, preferences for one style or another is a subjective matter. In some situations, people make this decision based on what they have seen or used in the past.
Since machete styles have never been standardized, one style often melds into another. However, there are some popular styles to consider.
The Bush Machete
This is an all-purpose machete. The blade is usually evenly weighted and it's fairly stout. You can fit this machete with a sheath to carry it easily from place to place. These blades are great for green vegetation and serve as a utility tool.
The Bolo Machete
Considered the "workhorse" of machetes, it is a cross between a knife and an ax. The bolo is heavily weighted at the tip of the blade, which makes it great for chopping woody, thick vegetation.
The Kukri Machete
The kukri machete has three parts that make up its blade. This includes a pointed tip for penetration, a wider midsection for chopping and a narrow part close to the handle for carving and whittling.
2. Length of the Machete and Blade
The majority of machetes will range in size from 25 cm to 70 cm. Average machetes are approximately 45 cm in length.
The smaller the blade is, the less reach it will have; however, these are more portable and have thicker blades (in many cases). While longer blades are harder to transport, they can clear bigger areas faster, and help you generate more centrifugal force. This helps to generate more power, too.
3. The Composition of the Machete Blade
One of the main differentiators between the different types of machetes is the material the blade is made from. Most commonly, you will find that machete blades are made of carbon steel or stainless steel. There are also stronger, hybrid versions, made of high carbon stainless steels, which combine the benefits offered by both carbon and stainless steel.
The main advantage of carbon steel is that it's harder than stainless steel. It also has better retention of edge sharpness. The downside of this material is that it has to be oiled regularly to prevent rust. They are also harder to re-sharpen.
When you choose a machete with a stainless steel baked, it is stain resistant and doesn't require as much maintenance as carbon steel. The edge is also easy to re-sharpen.
Unfortunately, stainless steel is softer than carbon steel. Also, the edge retention isn't as good as the carbon steel options.
High Carbon Stainless Steel
Many people prefer the hybrid version because it is corrosion resistant, like stainless steel, and features the strength of durability of carbon steel. The main disadvantage of this blade is that it still requires regular maintenance to keep it from rusting. Also, these aren't as easy to sharpen as the stainless-steel blades.
4. The Tang
This is the part of the machete blade that extends into the blade's grip and that connects the handle and blade together.
For a slicing and chopping implement that's swung with a large amount of force, you will discover the majority of machetes are made with full tang blades. In some cases, you may find one without this, which means the weight is distributed in favor of the blade end, rather than the handle end.
This is most commonly seen with smaller machetes, where having a blade that's heavier can help to generate more power.
5. Handle Materials of the Machete
While the blade is crucial to think about when choosing a machete, you also have to consider the handle. There are several popular materials used for machete handles.
The main advantage of a wood grip is that they offer superior comfort and grip. These are also lightweight and strong. As a result, with they are properly cared for, these handles will last a long time. However, if the handle isn't maintained, or is constantly in contact with moisture, it will crack.
When it comes to little maintenance, this material is the best option - and it's most affordable. However, these handles can get quite slippery - especially if you are using the machete in wet conditions. There also may be some discoloration on the handle when used on a long-term basis.
If you want a great grip, then rubber is the way to go. The varied textures and patterns improve comfort and add to the visual appeal of the machete. Also, when you choose a rubber grip, it will absorb some of the vibrations when using the machete.
The only potential drawback is that the rubber may tear over time. But this usually takes a while to happen.
Choosing a Machete: Information is Power
If you are ready to purchase a machete, then reviewing the information here will help you choose the one that best suits your needs. Any blade you choose, regardless of how it will be used, needs to be considered carefully.
If you are looking for other types of blades, such as swords, be sure to visit us. We offer a wide array of amazing products, all featuring high-quality materials and affordable prices.