Best Damascus Knives

best damascus knives Most readily available commercial knives are made from stainless steel. Some Japanese knives will use carbon steel, which is known for its extreme hardness and the ability to sharpen the blade to a very fine edge. Carbon steel rusts easily and requires a lot of maintenance. Another alternative Japanese knife-makers offer is Damascus steel.

Originally only found in Damascus, this metal is developed from repeated folding of multiple grades of steel in order to create a more resilient blade. The true method for developing Damascus steel has been lost to the ages, so you have to be wary when shopping for a blade using this metal. You can easily end up with an amateur attempt. In the minutes it takes you to read this article, you can find the perfect Damascus steel knife for you and save yourself months or even years of getting burned by sub-par products.

We’ve worked with knives for years. We’ve tried all kinds of steel types and configurations from every brand on the market. We’ve put them to the test and offer you our findings so that you don’t have to spend years figuring out which is exactly the right knife for you.

How to Identify the Best Damascus Knives

Blade Pattern

Damascus steel is notable for its distinctive “water-like” pattern. This occurs when the different grades of steel are folded together. Originally, Damascus steel could only be found in Damascus, where specific impurities in the steel in addition to the folding method produced this characteristic pattern. This reinforces the steel in the blade, which is why we like Damascus knives. At the end of the day, the pattern preference is more about personal aesthetic: every Damascus steel blade is its own uniquely patterned blade.

Fixed Blade

This is not required for a Damascus steel product, it is just a general preference. Unless you are specifically in the market for a folding knife, a fixed-blade knife tends to stand up to more rigorous work over longer periods of time. When purchasing a fixed-blade knife, you want a full-tang so that the blade is as sturdy as possible. Damascus steel is utilized, at least in part, on the principle that the steel layering creates a reinforced blade. There’s no point if the metal in the blade is reinforced if the entire knife doesn’t life up to that warranty.

Price Point

The main reason we pay attention to price point is to determine the quality of the product we’re looking at. Damascus steel is a special steel, but it doesn’t cost that much extra to develop a good quality knife out of it. This means that you shouldn’t pay an astronomical amount for your Damascus knife. You also shouldn’t pay too little, however. When we see a price that seems suspiciously low, based on our years of experience looking at the knife market, we suspect it’s a fake. Some manufacturers will use regular stainless steel and merely paint a pattern on it to resemble a Damascus pattern. One of the only ways to tell if a Damascus pattern is fake is to see if it rubs out. You don’t want to buy one and end up stuck with a lower-quality fake.

Damascus Knife Reviews

Nazarov Knives - Damascus Hunting Knife

Nazarov Knives - Damascus Hunting Knife
10 Reviews
This knife is our favorite of the fixed-blade Damascus steel knives available. The Damascus pattern is unique, combining two Damascus pattern types, making this a statement piece to own. It is available at an excellent price point; it may not be the right price for someone on a tight budget, but it is a reasonable price for someone who can invest in the best quality Damascus knife available. The knife is lightweight with a lovely ergonomic handle. The birchbark handle offers a comfortable, easy and non-slip grip. The blade arrives sharp and well-shaped for hunting purposes. Because it is a well-designed, high quality Damascus steel blade it retains that sharpness over a long period of time. The steel is high quality as is the craftsmanship of the overall knife and despite that, it’s not unreasonably expensive. This is the Damascus steel knife we most recommend.

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Bobcat Knives Damascus Steel Bowie Knife

Bobcat Knives Damascus Steel Bowie Knife
302 Reviews
This Bobcat Knives design doesn’t appeal to our aesthetic senses as much as our top pick for Damascus steel knives, but this is overall an excellent product that would make an excellent investment. The ten-inch blade is reliable, well-crafted Damascus steel. The handle is fairly-ergonomic, if not a slightly stiff grip over too long a period of time. The sheath is lovely and complements the general aesthetic of the knife well. This is a good quality knife. It isn’t quite the standard of the Nazarov, but you’re also saving a bit of money with this product. At the end of the day, the choice between these two knives could come down to aesthetics. The handles and sheaths offer different visual vibes and the Damascus steel designs themselves are unique. We stand behind this product and if it’s the one that appeals to you most, you should not hesitate to make that move!

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REG-274 Damascus Steel Hunting Knife

REG-274 Damascus Steel Hunting Knife
140 Reviews
There are no bad products on our list. We only recommend knives that we have used and found reliable, that we stand behind. This option was specifically chosen because it is a good quality Damascus steel, fixed-blade knife at a surprisingly reasonable price. This is the option you take when you want a Damascus steel knife but you don’t want to break the bank. The handle on this knife could be more ergonomic, but it is reasonably easy and comfortable to grip and provides good leverage for difficult knife tasks. The sheath is a rustic leather, going well with the overall aesthetic of the knife. The Damascus pattern is also a lovely example of the types of work knife-makers can do with this method of knife-making. If you are on a bit of a budget, this is an excellent option for you!

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Skokie Knives Damascus Steel Hunting Knife

Skokie Knives Damascus Steel Hunting Knife
17 Reviews
The Damascus pattern on these blades is not as aesthetically pleasing as others on this list. Additionally, the handles, while giving the tool a distinct, striking appearance, isn’t as ergonomic as we would like. Gripping can be awkward at some angles and somewhat slippery until you get used to using it. That being said, it is a very strong, high quality blade at a decent price. The tool is sturdy and reliable and stood up to a lot of work over a long period of time. It seemed to need to be sharpened a bit more frequently than other models, but overall it’s a good tool made with quality Damascus steel. For the price you’re paying, you’ll get an excellent Damascus steel knife with a particularly unique appearance

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NEWOOTZ Japanese Damascus Steel Pocket Knife

NEWOOTZ Japanese Damascus Steel Pocket Knife
14 Reviews
This is the only folding knife on our list for Damascus steel products because it is the best one we’ve found. Typically, we seek out Damascus steel blades for kitchen use or hunting, and in both of those cases you need a fixed-blade tool. Damascus steel offers added resilience and strength to your blade through the steel-layering process. There’s no reason your trusted, everyday carry folding knife shouldn’t be as strong and resilient as your survival knife. This handmade blade is strong and beautifully crafted. The aesthetic on this product, from sheath to handle to blade is impeccable. It lasted well without needing frequent resharpenings and would make an excellent choice if you’re specifically looking for a Damascus steel pocket knife.

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Conclusion

We’ve had years of experience using countless different knife designs in order to be able to narrow down our list of the best Damascus steel knives out there. We’ve tried and tested them so that you don’t have to waste your time and money doing so. At the end of the day, a knife is a personal investment. It’s a tool you’ll be using, perhaps day in and day out; that means it is a choice that you have to make based on your own personal needs and preferences. We offer our own opinions, based on a great deal of collective experience and hope we can help make your decision as easy as possible.

The Nazarov Knives Hunting Knife is our top pick for Damascus steel products. This beautiful fixed-blade hunting knife incorporates two different Damascus steel pattern types to give you visual variety and optimal strength. We loved using this knife with its ergonomic handle and simple, pleasing aesthetic. It doesn’t have to be your favorite, but it is certainly ours.

The Bobcat Knives Bowie Knife is also an excellent product, especially for the price you’re paying. The Damascus steel is well-made with a lovely resulting pattern. We found the handle to be slightly less ergonomic than the Nazarov, but it was easily graspable and comfortably usable over long periods of time. This tool stood up to hard tasks, retaining its sharpness and strength, and would make an excellent option for your Damascus steel knife investment.

Finally, the REG-274 Damascus Steel Hunting Knife isn’t the best of the best when it comes to Damascus steel blades, but it is an excellent tool for someone on a budget. Damascus steel, while a specialized metal and method for blade-making, isn’t a significantly expensive process, meaning you should never have to pay an excessive amount of money for a good quality Damascus steel blade. That also means that finding a good quality one for someone on a particularly tight budget is a piece of cake. This knife is resilient, strong and sharp with a lovely aesthetic. It is a highly satisfactory choice for the knife-buyer who needs to save as much money as possible.

Whatever knife appeals to you is the knife you should choose, no matter what anyone else tells you. All we hope to do is help you narrow the hundreds of options down to some of the best so that you can find the right knife for you while knowing it will be the best quality and price possible!

Jerry Peterson, Editor In Chief
Jerry Peterson

Jerry is a 34 year old blogger. He has a degree in Electrical Engineering and is currently working for a communications company in New York. In his spare time he likes to program computers, go hiking and make knives. Read more about him.

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