Beginner Bushcraft Knife and Axe recommendations

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Jul 31, 2021
8
4
29
Derby
Hello everyone!

I'm newish to bushcraft and recently started spending all of my time in woods as I've got bored of the snobby atmosphere in wild camping and looking for a beginner knife and axe to experiment with before getting one of these beautiful handmade blades I keep seeing.

I've got experience in survival, foraging, 7 day + trips and fire making but the group's I've always been with have looked down heavily in carrying any form of blade so begrudgingly never spent much time learning about them and how to use the effectively.

I'm currently looking at an entry level £12 Mora and a £10 axe from Tool station (these are just for a weeks experimenting and learning remember)

I'm eager to hear from people if you have any recommendations for the type of knife and axe I use to start with.

Thanks
LPK!
 

Oliver G

Full Member
Sep 15, 2012
355
236
Melbourne, Derbyshire
That's the way to go, cheap and cheerful to start with, I picked up a load for Mora 511 for about £5 each for my scouts. Until you develop the muscle memory and techniques you won't feel much difference between a knife that works and a knife that works but is also expensive. With the Axe just make sure that the head is on properly and you look after it, I understand the X7 are highly rated as a cheap and cheerful axe.

If you head just south of Derby there's a place called Robin Wood, it's where I regularly walk the dog and there's plenty of fallen trees and branches to practice on.

Keep us posted on your learnings, you very well may stumble on a nugget of information that no one else knows.
 

gra_farmer

Full Member
Mar 29, 2016
867
517
Kent
As many have said, we are spoilt for good cheap blades with moras, as for the axe Hultafors are good, but keep an eye out for second hand older axes....sometimes a few pop up on here too.
 
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Erbswurst

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Mar 5, 2018
3,120
1,226
Berlin
Fiskars X7

Opinel No8 Carbone

or

Mora Garberg stainless with leather sheath

The stuff above doesn't need to be "upgraded" later. You simply can use it a lifetime. Buy once, smile twice!
 

Robson Valley

Full Member
Nov 24, 2014
9,378
2,147
McBride, BC
Learn free-hand sharpening. It takes lots of practice. No, you can't "buy" an edge in the middle of nowhere. Excellent BC skill.

What's the plan? Sharpen for cutting or sharpen for splitting?
What do you need for an adequate head weight? Seems unimportant so far.
I do a lot of the rough-out carvings with 4 different adzes. The head weight makes a great difference between finesse and knot-bashing.
 
Jul 31, 2021
8
4
29
Derby
That's the way to go, cheap and cheerful to start with, I picked up a load for Mora 511 for about £5 each for my scouts. Until you develop the muscle memory and techniques you won't feel much difference between a knife that works and a knife that works but is also expensive. With the Axe just make sure that the head is on properly and you look after it, I understand the X7 are highly rated as a cheap and cheerful axe.

If you head just south of Derby there's a place called Robin Wood, it's where I regularly walk the dog and there's plenty of fallen trees and branches to practice on.

Keep us posted on your learnings, you very well may stumble on a nugget of information that no one else knows.
Hi Oliver thanks for your recommendations, I have Mora 746 Stainless Bushcraft Knife ready for collection from Springfields in Burton, excited to start having a go with it but I'm going to spend the first few days just practicing safety first then going to move to an axe after I've become more comfortable with the blade.

Thanks for the recommendation I'll have a visit there next week! Is it suitable for some stealth camping too?
 
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Jul 31, 2021
8
4
29
Derby
High time to part company with people like that. :)

The above recommendations about covers the easy (and practical) part of the field and not expensive either.
I love wild camping but the people ruin it, expensive tents and constant ultra lightweight and snobby looks at my molle tactical bag which is 'MY personal preferred bag' got no time for osprey and overpriced dehydrated meals anymore and this community is so much more positive and helpful!

P.s I got the Mora 746 Stainless Bushcraft Knife
 
Jul 31, 2021
8
4
29
Derby
Learn free-hand sharpening. It takes lots of practice. No, you can't "buy" an edge in the middle of nowhere. Excellent BC skill.

What's the plan? Sharpen for cutting or sharpen for splitting?
What do you need for an adequate head weight? Seems unimportant so far.
I do a lot of the rough-out carvings with 4 different adzes. The head weight makes a great difference between finesse and knot-bashing.
Hi Robson,

At the moment it's for spltting and basic wood wood work/ feather sticks while I learn the basics but some info on how to maintain the knife and sharpen it would he fantastic
 
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Jul 31, 2021
8
4
29
Derby
Thanks for all of your recommendations everyone! I wasn't expecting such a great response when I logged on (honestly I put off checking because the affer mentioned community aren't as helpful or positive with advice when you reach out)

I went with the Mora 746 Stainless Bushcraft Knife

IM going to have a look through everyone's axe recommendations after I've got comfortable with the new knife!
 

Oliver G

Full Member
Sep 15, 2012
355
236
Melbourne, Derbyshire
Hi Oliver thanks for your recommendations, I have Mora 746 Stainless Bushcraft Knife ready for collection from Springfields in Burton, excited to start having a go with it but I'm going to spend the first few days just practicing safety first then going to move to an axe after I've become more comfortable with the blade.

Thanks for the recommendation I'll have a visit there next week! Is it suitable for some stealth camping too?
Glad to see you're getting along nicely, Springfields is great, I get a lot of kit from them, luckily they're online only at the moment or I could see my wallet getting a lot lighter. I've found stainless great to work with as it's less susceptible to rusting and I frequently forget to oil my knives before I put them away.

There are a few camps that have been set up and I've seen a few people hammocking up. I got in contact with the lady who runs the woods on behalf of the forestry commission and was told I can't camp there in the summer due to fire risk, fair enough, it is mostly a pine forest and quite flammable.

If you get lucky and are allowed to camp there just avoid the birch coppice to the south end, there's a family of deer who live there have a hard enough time with all the dog walkers and mountain bikers but if you go early enough in the morning you may see them pottering outside the coppice.

There is the midlands meet in Lord's wood they're a lovely crew and I'm sure will be able to give you some pointers. I haven't been for a while due the juggling work and babies.
 

MartiniDave

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Aug 29, 2003
2,349
124
59
Cambridgeshire
Thanks for all of your recommendations everyone! I wasn't expecting such a great response when I logged on (honestly I put off checking because the affer mentioned community aren't as helpful or positive with advice when you reach out)

I went with the Mora 746 Stainless Bushcraft Knife

IM going to have a look through everyone's axe recommendations after I've got comfortable with the new knife!
I think you would be wise to concentrate on the knife to begin with and get reasonably proficient with that before worrying about an axe. There are some excellent knife usage videos on YouTube. Look for videos by the likes of Mors Kochanski, Paul Kirtley, Ray Mears, Coalcracker Bushcraft etc.
 
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Erbswurst

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Mar 5, 2018
3,120
1,226
Berlin
You will see that the Mora 746 has a too large distance between the end of the finger guard and the edge of the blade to serve well for food preparation on a chopping board.

A Companion heavy duty or even usual Companion would have been the better choice.

If you read in outdoor forums just "a Mora", people usually mean the Companion.

 
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