Sunday, January 17, 2010

One Hell of a Knife: The Kukri

It has been all about guns here on Homemade Defense lately, so I figured that I would spend some time and love on those wonderful edged weapons and tools we use everyday, the knife. I love knives and probably own more than a dozen, not including kitchen knives and swords. One of my favorites is the kukri. The kukri is the traditional knife of Nepal and is a symbol of the famous British Empire and Commonwealth troops, the Gurkhas.

Kukris can come in a few slightly different shapes, and many modern takes on the blade have been made in the last few years. There is evidence that kukri-like knives have been in use for more than 2500 years The Ancient Greeks had a similar knife called the Kopi that is the probable source of the kukri. The kukri really began to get famous after the Nepal War in 1814 and 1815. The British Empire formed the British Gurkha Army and British soldiers discovered that one light and strong tool could be a great tool for almost every camp and wilderness duty, in addition to being a fearsome weapon. The strength of the kukri comes from its oddly leaf shaped blade. Since it curves forward, the leading part of the blade actually hits the target earlier than the hand would. This allows you to continue swinging as the blade makes its impact, greatly increasing the power of the slash. The giant milkweeds and other wild brushy growth in my backyard certainly proved no match for it. It can be even used to split small logs. In addition to the chopping and slashing blade, you can use the first third of the blade, the section near the grip, as a very good stand-in for other utility knife-type work like stripping bark and so forth. Combined with a sharp point for pokey-type uses, the kukri makes a pretty good all in one survival tool, equal in many ways to a combination of a utility knife, a machete, Bowie knife, and maybe a hatchet or tomohawk.

Many kukris have been made by traditional smiths from truck springs, which gives them amazing strength and resiliency. They are usually carried in a leather case, mostly having walnut wooden grip and frequently coming with two small knives, kukris are one of the most most liked and respected knives of the world. Even today, it is still used by Nepalese, Australian, British, and US troops, as well as civilians across the world.

A traditional Kukri with its small knives

My kukri is like the one above, a Cold Steel Kukri, the knife is great although I got the blade so sharp that it tore the sheath up pretty bad. A little duct tape and camo tape and it is better than before. These kukris are pretty cheap, I think I paid about $18.00 for mine. Very tough and easy to get a good edge on that first third of the blade.

Or you could get one of these, very nice custom knifesmith types, but I'll bet they are a great deal more expensive and past the about $25.00 cutoff I have for knives.

Look how the kukri dwarfs these other knives, including a good sized AK bayonet.


  1. Nepal's Finest and largest Genuine Gurkha khukuri (kukri) maker and original khukris(kukris) knives Seller. Offers various category of Nepalese khukri(knife) for online sale. Our knives have no frills because we wanted to present these khukuris (Kukris) to the world in its original.

  2. The Victorinox SwissChamp XLT is a very large 11 layer Swiss Army Knife.
    It has 50 functions its 91mm length, but increasing in width.
    It offers 80 functions in a standard 91mm knife that is 64.6mm in width.

  3. One of the amazing self defense weapon is khukuri. It is one of the extreme dangerous weapon when handled by an expert.