Morakniv Companion Heavy Duty
Great price for a sturdy, sharp knife.
- Hard to miss the Hi-vis orange
- High carbon blade needs more regular attention
I was looking for a decent low-cost trail knife and many folks all over the 'net recommended Morakniv Companion, or the Companion HD if you plan to baton wood and other bushcrafting.
Found a pretty good deal on eBay (somewhere around $18 I believe) and ordered one. Heck, it's inexpensive enough that I could have ordered 3 or 4, but I wanted to be sure this is what I wanted before going hog wild. I had ordered the high-vis orange so when I set the knife down in the grass or leaves I would still be able to find it (Oh, the burdens of getting old and feeble-minded...).
Tested this knife in the kitchen initially. Works great on tomatoes and the acid from the tomatoes will help start a patina on the knife. Because of this I hadn't yet started to force a patina. Figure I'll just keep using it in the kitchen and it will get there. Cuts meat exceptionally well also. But because of the width of the blade on the HD model, it tends to "split" harder items like carrots and apples rather than "slice". This is not a drawback as I see it, however, as this knife wasn't meant for food prep.
Taking the knife outdoors to its intended environment is where this really shines. Making fuzz sticks, batonning wood and cutting cord are all things it does exceptionally well. While I initially had hesitations about the rubberized handle I have come to find it very comfortable and offering a good grip. Even with sweaty hands the knife stays put in my hands very well. Hasn't yet slipped when whittling, cutting or chopping. The spine of the blade is squared off enough to use with a firesteel.
I am somewhat ambivalent about the sheath, but for the price, you can't argue about it. Going to order the regular Companion now for food-prep and lighter duty uses.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $18
Best camping knife I have ever owned.
- Sturdy construction
- Holds an edge well
- Easy-to-grip rubberized handle
- Hard plastic sheath can be worn on belt
- No finger-guard
- Doesn't work well with firesteel
I was given this knife about two years ago as a groomsman's gift. It quickly replaced my old Gerber fixed blade as my favorite hiking knife.
The construction of this knife is fantastic. It has taken a serious beating from me and still looks and feels good-as-new. The blade itself holds a razor edge easily while I'm out in the woods (I usually realign it once every few months with a carbide sharpener).
While the knife does not use a full tang, the tang is well attached to the handle. One of my most frequent uses for knives in the woods is splitting wood. To do this, I place the knife at the end of a log / large stick and beat it senseless with another log / stick to drive the blade all the way first the first log / stick. I have broken quite a few knives using this technique, and it has become one of my big at-home checks before I'll use a knife in the woods. The Morakniv stood up to this abuse without any issues.
One issue I had with this knife is that the spine of the blade is very slightly beveled. This really doesn't have any effect on the usefulness of this knife, except that I can't use the spine as a striker for a firesteel. I normally use ferrocerium rods and I am not easily able to get a spark using the spine of this knife.
The rubberized handle on the Morakniv Companion Heavy Duty is very easy to grip. I do wish it had a finger guard to ensure your hand never slips over the blade, but this rubberized grip does the job quite nicely.
The hard plastic sheath is another nice touch. It does a good job of locking the blade in place so you can safely store the knife in your pack. I did find that this sheath came loose over time, but after reading online a bit, found that I could use a hair drier / space heater to heat the sheath, then press it to re-form it for a good-as-new lock.
USES / EASE OF USE
- Wearing: The hard plastic sheath on this knife clips onto your belt without requiring you to remove your belt first (something I ran into with other knives). The weight also makes a huge difference here. This knife weighs a fraction of what any of my other outdoor knives do. This makes it easier to pack / carry regardless of how long I'll be gone or how light I want to pack.
- Feather Sticks: This knife produces great feather sticks for building fires. This is partly due to the ergonomics of the handle and partly due to the edge held by the blade.
- Splitting Wood: I have used this knife multiple times to split wood by placing the blade at the end of a piece of wood and hitting it with another piece of wood. This knife has stood up to this abuse for nearly two years now.
- Filleting: My friends and I have used this knife for filleting fish to take home as well as for bait preparation for deep-sea fishing in the past.
Source: received it as a personal gift
Great value and surprised how well it has performed. Excellent utility and camp knife.
- Surprised by how inexpensive this knife is given the quality, solid build, and ability to keep an edge.
- Somewhat short blade.
- Scabbard fits well in Molle but is a bear to take back out
Picked this up as a camp knife and ended up buying two more. Knife fits well in the scabbard and stays put. Perfect sized handle. Very durable, I use one as a utility knife, a second as a kitchen knife (holds an edge well, very sharp) and the third in my emergency kit.
Again, I have own cheap knives and this just does not feel or act like a $20 Amazon knife. The Heavy Duty has a slightly thicker blade than the standard Companion, not noticeable in use but does feel sturdier when compared alongside each other.
Generally I would say that this is the perfect entry-level outdoor utility knife.
Used for a few years now for light camping, have not yet tried proper bushcrafting...may be a great test.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $19
For the price, you cannot beat the quality. I have the Heavy Duty model and it is great. The carbon Steel does require a little more maintenance but no problem. I like the sturdy plastic sheath.
- Price is excellent
- Stays aharp
I have two of the Heavy Duty version of this knife. I put one in the kitchen to test and one in the backpack to test on the trail.
The knife holds an excellent edge and I have sliced many a tomato, carrots, ham, hotdogs, etc in the kitchen. On the trail, I have batoned and cut 550 cord.
The Heavy Duty model has a thicker overall blade. If you are used to using stainless steel blades, you should put a patina on this knife because it is Carbon Steel (how to on youtube).
Finally, the regular version of this is probably a better kitchen knife and the Heavy Duty (HD) is better for the trail. For the price EXCELLENT KNIFE!
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $15
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Current Retail: $35.99
Historic Range: $14.95-$35.99
Reviewers Paid: $15.00-$19.00