10 models of military knives deciphered
The Army and more specifically the Special Forces are made up of soldiers trained to become the most lethal and intelligent human weapons on the planet. These heroes are tasked with carrying out extreme missions despite the chaos they may encounter in the field.
These soldiers can fulfill the function of rescuers, protectors and, if necessary, performers with surgical precision. They are transformed and adapted according to the needs of each mission. In this way, any equipment he wears must meet his requirements. Their knives are part of the essential elements that their package counts.
A well-crafted blade can be a companion and a savior to the soldier who wears it. Created specifically for combat, the blades we are about to present to you are designed to kill. In our search for the best special forces knives , we considered the reliability of the knife in the field. We've also made sure to find a civilian equivalent so you can own one of these weapons.
Be careful, some blades are too dangerous for civilians. Each of these knives was created to become a reliable self-defense tool, which allows its possessor to survive.
At first glance, the Ari B'Lilah looks like a blade the legendary Rambo might wield. However, this knife is indeed a weapon of war. It is used by the Israeli anti-terrorist unit YAMAM (Yeḥida Merkazit Meyuḥedet).
Formed after the Ma'alot massacre in 1974, YAMAM specializes in hostage rescue operations and takeover raids. To handle the extreme operations they take part in, it makes sense that they need a knife that looks intimidating. The blade is vanadium-niobium stainless steel with spine jimping and a G10 fiberglass handle.
The Ari B'Lilah, as you might expect, has no civilian equivalent.
- Year: 1974
- Type of steel: vanadium-niobium stainless steel
- Blade length: 6 inches
Developed for the Russian Spetsnaz Special Forces, the Ballistic Knife is a hybrid blade and a pretty badass projectile. The blade of a ballistic knife can be fired at the push of a button and travel about five meters at about 60 km/h, in case a Spetsnaz soldier is unable to chase down the enemy. Some ballistic knives use air or even gas propulsion for more power, making them even more destructive.
Spetsnaz are known to practice throwing knives with a surgical technique, eliminating their target in one swift and silent motion. It's not a unique projectile, as you can reload another blade by sliding it through the spring.
It's probably a smart idea that this knife isn't available to the general public.
- Year: 1983
- Steel type: stainless steel
- Blade length: 5 inches
The Brigade of Gurkhas is an umbrella term that refers to all British Army units made up of Nepali Gurkha soldiers. Raised in a hostile environment, the Gurkhas developed into soldiers with superhuman abilities.
You can witness their skills in an annual race called the Trailwalker 100km which is usually completed in 12-13 hours. The Gurkhas win it every year, with a time of around eight hours.
The Kukri (aka Khukuri) is their weapon of choice and it is as sharp as their physical qualities. The Gurkhas of Nepal grew up sharpening tools and hunting animals with the curved blade, allowing them to easily master this weapon of war.
You can acquire a 65Mn carbon steel CRKT Kukri with an overloaded thermoplastic rubber grip.
- Year: 1810
- Steel type: 65Mn carbon steel
- Blade length: 15-17 inches
US Marine Corps KA-BAR combat knife
Since 1942, the combat knife of the United States Marine Corps, is the KA-BAR. It is a knife that has been stained with blood many times to defend American soldiers, especially during World War II. It continues to be the favorite knife of many US Marines today.
The 7-inch fixed blade is made from 1095 Cro-van steel and has a 56-58 HRC, which means it's tough enough for any mission even in a degraded setting.
The American-made blade is considered by many to be the highest quality blade in the world. The legendary knife continues to serve our country well and will likely do so for many lifetimes to come.
- Year: 1940
- Steel type: high carbon steel
- Blade length: 6-8 inches
Sheffield Fairbairn-Sykes Dagger
Founded in 1941, the British Special Air Service (SAS) has proven its versatility by taking on counter-terrorism, covert reconnaissance, hostage rescue and direct action missions. Many SAS actions and operations are top secret, but we still know what knife they are using.
Probably the most elegant blade on this list, the Sheffield Fairbairn-Sykes British Commando Dagger began to see service during World War II. Born from the minds of William Ewart Fairbairn and Eric Anthony Sykes, this slender blade was designed specifically for surprise attacks and close combat. The double-edged blade with a slime handle can easily slip between ribs for critical damage. It also has a well-balanced design, fitting well in your hand without feeling heavy in action, making it one of the best combat knives in the field.
- Year: 1960
- Steel type: 440A stainless steel
- Blade length: 6 inches
Ontario MK III
Of all the blades that Navy SEALs can carry in their pack, the Ontario MK III knife is the best. It meets the requirements of elite units. It is still used today.
The 6 inch 440A stainless steel blade with black oxide finish is built to last and be used through the roughest of times. It has an impact-resistant polypropylene handle for a comfortable and reliable grip and a sheath with a brass belt loop and holder so you can keep it close at hand at all times.
The blade has a serrated back and a reinforced curved tip, making it durable for almost any job. It is a versatile knife that can also be used as a hammer and a lever.
- Year: 1942
- Steel type: Cro-van 1095 steel
- Blade length: 7 inches
Gerber Mark II
Designed by retired US Army Captain Bud Holzman, the timeless Gerber Mark II combat knife was based on the Mainz Gladius, a famous ancient Roman sword.
The blade was first used during the Vietnam War and was used by many soldiers, including US Special Forces. It was actually deemed too basic and was discontinued in the 70s until designer Gerber Al Mar added serrated serrations towards the handle to reinvent it as a survival tool instead of a knife of fight. He gained popularity in 1981 thanks to the cult classic film The Road Warrior, the popular sequel to Mad Max.
With a sturdy peg and a blade designed to pierce , this knife can do a lot of damage in close combat. The black oxide coated 420HC serrated blade with a die-cast aluminum handle is still sold by Gerber today.
- Year: 1966
- Steel type: 420HC
- Blade length: 6.5 inches
SOG SEAL Team Elite
The SOG SEAL Team Elite knife is an updated version of the original SEAL knife. It has been the subject of an extensive and intense evaluation program by the US government and has been successfully adopted.
Many Navy SEALs looking for an alternative to their blade turn to this sharp piece of equipment. The Team Elite knife is constructed with AUS8 steel and a glass reinforced nylon handle.
The blade has straight and serrated edges for versatile functionality. Like its predecessor, it is also powder coated for improved durability and rust resistance.
- Year 2012
- Steel type: AUS8 steel
- Blade length: 7 inches
Emerson Combat Karambit
Task Force 2 is an elite Canadian operations force considered one of the finest special forces units on Earth. They are trained to specialize in hostage rescue, foreign home defense and direct action, performing many counter-terrorism missions.
The Southeast Asian Karambit knife with a curved raptor claw silhouette is their blade of choice. Originally an agricultural tool, the karambit knife is also perfect for gutting and cutting. There are many karambit makers out there, but Emerson's Combat Pinball Karambit is one of the best models. It has a 154cm single edged blade and a G10 handle all finished in black.
- Year: 11th century
- Steel type: 154 cm
- Blade length: 4+ inches
Green Beret Knife
US Special Forces undergo grueling training and have a reputation for being exceptionally resilient. Each graduate receives the Green Beret Knife (aka Yarborough Knife) designed and manufactured by the famous Chris Reeve.
The blade has a dorsal tapered profile with 55-57 HRC and a profiled sheet metal micarta grip. You can get it directly from Chris Reeve 's site with or without serrations and choose from two blade length options.
- Year: 2002
- Steel type: S35VN stainless steel
- Blade length: 7 inches