One tool that’s extremely important to scuba enthusiasts is the dive knife. While movies like to portray them as something that can be used by the diver to defend themselves against sharks and giant squids, the truth of the matter is the purpose of these blades is a lot less dramatic. They are a tool that divers can use to cut tangled fishing line or aquatic vegetation they may be entangled in or cracking open clams.
In the past, some divers may have decided on a dive dagger according to its size – with the emphasis being placed on the larger ones. In other words, the bigger ones were considered better. Modern divers have different criteria for choosing the best dive knife that takes into consideration a number of different factors. Keeping that in mind, below are the top ten dive knives currently available.
Best Dive Knifes – Reviews
10Cressi Skorpion Knife
This well-balanced knife is designed with a number of features which makes it very useful to divers. It has a tempered blade with a drop tip and has dual blade edges – the actual edge of the knife is smooth and the top of it is serrated with a line cutter notch. The blade is really sharp and it comes with a sheath that has a one-hand release locking mechanism so that it can be easily taken out of the sheath while underwater. The sheath attaches to the diver’s leg using two straps, so it’s always in a convenient location when needed.
9Boffer Tactical Knife Set
This model comes with two different sheaths and a number of features which make it a good knife not only for snorkeling but also for fishing, boating or for self-defense. It has a blade length of 3.85-inches with a handle length of 4.13-inches. The blade is made from 420C steel and has a straight cutting edge with a serrated edge on the top of the blade. The sheaths can be attached to the arm, leg or belt and one is made from nylon and the other one is made from ABS plastic. This makes this set versatile enough to be used for a number of different situations.
8Promate Scuba Titanium Knife With Sheath
Designed with a titanium blade and available in a number of different colors and with either a blunt or sharp tip, this scuba knife is a tool that will prove itself quite useful every time it’s taken out of its sheath. It has an easy-to-grip rubber molded handle that’s equipped with a titanium hammer tip on the end of it that can be used as a hammer or to bang on the side of air tanks to signal a diving partner. This lightweight knife is about 9.45-inches long with a blade length of approximately 4.45-inches and requires almost no maintenance to keep it in tip-top shape.
7Cressi Borg Long Blade Knife
This modern dive blade has a nice stylish design and is an ideal knife for divers, snorkelers or anyone who can admire a quality knife. It has a blade that’s made from Japanese 304 stainless steel and can be bought with either a blunt tip or a sharp pointed tip. The cutting edge of the blade is smooth and the top part of the blade is serrated with a line-cutter indentation built right into it. This knife has a blade length of 5.51-inches and a total length of 10.43-inches and has a handle with a comfortable grip and a hammer point on the end of it. It also comes with a sheath that’s easy to use and has a locking mechanism that can be released with one hand.
6Tusa X-Pert II Knife (FK-940ti)
This X-Pert II knife is not only stylish looking but also has a couple of features which make it a useful dive tool for divers, snorkelers or for anyone else who needs a quality knife. It has a titanium drop-point blade that’s approximately 4.5-inches long and not only has a smooth cutting edge on the bottom of the blade but also has a serrated edge on top with a line cutter. The handle of this knife is designed to not only be comfortably held in the hand but to also counterweight the weight of the blade – making for a nicely balanced knife that’s also easy to remove from its included sheath thanks to a lock-release that can be activated with the push of a single button.
5Atomic Aquatics Titanium Ti6 Scuba Blade
This knife is designed to be the ideal companion to any scuba diver or snorkeler who needs a sharp high-quality tool for cutting fishing line or in case of emergencies. It features a full-tang blade that’s made out of titanium and comes either with a sharp tip or a blunt tip. The top of the blade is serrated and the bottom of the blade is smooth with a line cutting notch in it. This knife comes with a lightweight sheath that’s easy to unlock with a push of a button so that the knife is always for the diver to reach.
4Promate Barracuda Sharp Tip Titanium Knife
This high-quality knife has many of the features that professional divers look for when choosing a knife. It has a 5-inch long titanium blade with a serrated edge on the top of the blade and a smooth edge on the bottom of the knife with a line cutting notch located there as well. This model has an easy-to-grip handle with a titanium hammer on its tip so that it can be used to hammer objects or to bang on the side of a tank to signal other divers. This knife comes with a sheath that has a quick-release on it so the knife can be used in a hurry.
3Hok Tactical Knife With Two Scabbards
This tactical blade is designed to be used by anyone who needs a high-quality blade that’s fairly inexpensive, including divers, snorkelers or survivalist. This unit is made from 440C stainless steel that won’t rust with proper maintenance and a dual cutting edge that features both a serrated and a smooth edge. Its handle is wrapped with nylon string and is comfortable to hold in the hand. This knife comes with two separate sheaths, each useful for a particular purpose. It has a hard plastic scabbard with elastic lace and a nylon scabbard with nylon lace. These sheaths can be attached to either the arm or the leg.
2Spyderco Atlantic Salt Serrated Edge Knife
While this knife may look unusual to some people, it will be recognized by diving professionals as a professional quality dive cutter that can be used in a variety of different situations. It features a folding serrated blade that was hollow-ground from H-1 steel and features a finger hole so it can be quickly and easily opened with one hand. This knife features a very secure blade lock and a comfortable handle that comes with a convenient lanyard hole. This knife has been thoroughly tested for durability as well as quality and should provide the user with many years of service.
1Punada Black Tactical Knife
This knife has a number of useful features and comes with two sheaths that make it useful for a number of different outdoor activities including diving, snorkeling, fishing, and hunting. It has a blade that’s made of 440C stainless steel that is rust-resistant as long as it’s properly maintained. The spine of the knife has a serrated edge and the cutting edge is smooth with a pointed tip. This unit comes with two different types of sheaths – one made of ABS plastic and one made of nylon – and comes with two pairs of leg straps, all of which gives the user options to how they want to carry the knife.
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How to Choose the Best Dive Knife
While WWII frogmen relied on their diving knife to save themselves in some pretty precarious situations, most modern divers don’t need a knife for anything other than removing obstacles such as vegetation or tangled fishing lines that they have become entangled in or maybe removing part of an old wreck for examination. Therefore, these types of knives aren’t like the old tactical knives and are usually used just as a diving cutter. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the features a person should look for when choosing what they consider to be the best diving knife for their personal needs.
Length of the Blade
When it comes to a diving knife, there are two sizes of blades that one should consider. There are small blades – which are approximately 2 to 3-inches in length – and there are medium-sized blades which are about 4 to 5-inches in length. Most recreational divers will want to go with a medium length blade because that will be the one that will be most effective at removing obstacles in case they get tangled up.
Another thing to be considered is whether the blade has a straight or serrated blade. Straight edges are good for cutting nylon rope and synthetic fishing line, and serrated edges are good for sawing at kelp or natural hemp fibers. Many knives manufactured use a dual-edge blade that combines both of these edges on one blade. Sometimes both are incorporated on the cutting edge of the blade and sometimes the spine of the blade is serrated while the cutting edge is smooth. These are the most versatile edge types to own.
A knife edge isn’t the only thing to be given thought. It’s also important to consider the tip of the blade. There are three different types—there are sharp tips, blunt tips, and tanto-style tips and each of them have their own particular uses. Sharp tips are great for cutting or cleaning fish but aren’t very safe and blunt tips are better for digging and are safer to use. Tanto-style tips are also available but I’ve found that they aren’t very useful for these types of knives. Tanto-style tips are more useful for survival knives than they are with knives used for diving or snorkeler. They also aren’t very useful for spear fisherman, either.
The composition of the blade is another important thing to consider. When it comes to these types of knives, there are basically two choices. Stainless steel and titanium. As a general rule, titanium blades are better because they keep their edge a long time and are rust-resistant. However, they can also be quite expensive as well, so they are only used on medium to high-end knives. Titanium is also lighter and more flexible, which is why it’s usually preferred by divers.
Stainless steel can be a good choice that’s less expensive but they require more maintenance to keep them corrosion-free. When it comes to stainless-steel, there are 300-series and 400-series blades. The 300-series resists rust better than the 400-series but they also tend to lose their edge faster.
Some knives come with black blades. This can prevent fish and other ocean wildlife from being alerted by a flashing silver blade. However, it can also make the blade extremely hard to find if you happen to drop it on the ocean floor.
Another thing to think about is the sheath that comes with the knife or whether it even comes with a sheath. There are some folding models that are easy to carry. These tend to be lighter and easier to stash in your gear and most of them lock into position so they are relatively safe to use. However, they can also be hard to open up underwater and that’s why many divers prefer to use sheathed models. With sheaths, the blade can often be locked into them so they are easy to wear and are relatively safe. Most of them are equipped with push-button releases that also make them easier to use with one-hand.
Other Features Worth Thinking About
Divers may also want to think about purchasing a knife with some of these options:
- Line cutter
- Metal handle butt for hammering
- Full-tang blades