Are you looking for information about the best boot knives? Or perhaps you need advice on how to wear a boot knife? Good. That’s precisely what we’re going to cover today.
Because what’s one of the most essential pieces of survival equipment you carry? It’s certainly not a mood ring. It’s a knife!
Your knife is a vital part of survival and bushcraft, and its history is long. It’s one of the oldest weapons and an essential tool for hand cutting and combat.
That’s why today we’re going to concentrate on a secondary knife, a Boot Knife.
After reading this article, you’ll want to get out and buy the best boot knife you can find. And wear it like a boss.
What Is A Boot Knife Anyway?
A boot knife is a secondary blade you wear as a backup. It’s usually a fixed blade dagger sheathed and attached to the inside or outside of your boot.
It’s a concealed weapon always at the ready when necessary.
The blade is around three to four inches long, so it can easily fit inside a boot. And while this is not a large knife, its power is in its concealment. This makes it an effective tool for protection.
Longer ones around six inches are available but are heavier and harder to conceal.
You may get into a situation where you lose your primary knife and are not left defenseless with your boot knife.
It’s always accessible, and you can draw it fast without unfolding it like other blades.
It’s an everyday carry tool you don’t have to carry in your pockets.
A Brief Boot Knife History Lesson
The history of the boot knife goes back to the American West and beyond.
It was known as the gambler’s best friend when firearms were less reliable. So having a concealed weapon gave you a significant advantage.
Long boots worn in the old west made it the perfect place to carry a straight blade, and it was easy to access in a fight.
Military personnel around the world have used boot knives. For example, paratroopers had them in WWII when they dropped into battle zones.
Today, we don’t often have to fight to the death in the streets. But we still need to protect ourselves and have more than just our primary weapon.
Besides self-defense, a boot knife is also great for work, sport, and utility use.
Who Needs To Wear A Boot Knife?
When out hunting, you need a utility knife that is easy to carry. A secondary knife is even better.
Regular tasks around camp like cutting branches and using ropes require a knife.
Skinning animals and helping with field dressing are also other uses for your boot knife.
Having a knife when fishing is mandatory. Why? Because you need to cut lines, clean fish, and do all the other camp duties where a knife is essential.
You’re carrying all sorts of gear when out fishing, so having a boot knife is ideal.
When faced with a survival situation, you need to bolt fast and get yourself and your loved ones to safety.
You will need a blade for protection and utility uses while on the run.
Even if you lose other weapons (like your survival knife), you’ll still have a backup boot knife in a pinch.
Armed forces worldwide have been using boot knives for armed conflict in all major wars.
They are a standard issue in some branches. And provide a secondary weapon that is easily accessed in combat.
Besides their firearms, some police forces carry boot knives alongside their primary weaponry.
Folding knives take an extra step to open them. And thus, it can sometimes take a few seconds to open. This can be the difference between life and death.
A boot knife is a last resort weapon but may be necessary.
A knife is an essential bushcraft tool while training. And you should know how to carry a boot knife sheath and practice accessing your knife.
It is another blade for training and is perfect for backup should you lose your primary weapon.
EDC (Everyday Carry)
Having a concealed weapon as an everyday carry is excellent for cutting and self-defense.
Our pockets are already full of cell phones, keys, and other items. And if you need to fumble around to find a pocket knife, it could put you at a defensive disadvantage.
It is a weapon no one sees, so you are not considered a threat.
It’s also a part of the gear you take with you every time you leave the house. You’d be surprised how often a knife comes in handy.
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How To Wear A Boot Knife The Right Way
Remember, your boot knife is a concealed backup weapon, so it’s not attached to your bug-out bag, survival belt, plate carrier, or MOLLE vest.
As the name suggests, this knife attaches to your work boot, cowboy boot, or tactical boot.
There are 4 possible locations you can attach one:
- Inside of your boot
- In a pocket inside the boo
- Outside of the boot
- In the laces
1. Inside Your Boot
This is the simplest way to carry a boot knife. Because you are just sheathing the fixed blade and sliding it tip down into your boot.
This can cause problems tho. Because if your boot is too loose, the blade may move around and fall flat under your foot, making access harder.
If the boot is tied up tight, you will feel the knife against your leg, and it will start to bother you fast.
You should buy a holster that wraps around your lower leg to secure the knife.
2. In a Pocket Inside The Boot
This boot knife wear is convenient, but it is designed for this purpose. They are great, but you will need to match your knife with your boot pocket to make sure it fits.
You are not messing around with holsters or straps, but these are specific boots that you will have to buy and use.
3. Outside The Boot
This setup gives you freedom for your legs and feet while wearing the boots. You will need a longer boot or a shorter knife attached with a strap.
This may cause concealment problems unless you wear loose pants over the boots. You may want to purchase a smaller boot knife to not be seen.
4. In The Laces
This is another option if your boot type has an extended lace area. You can weave the laces through the holes in the holster, and then you have your boot knife mounted on top of the boot.
There are no boot modifications to worry about, and it won’t rub and irritate your leg. A smaller boot knife is what will work with this rig.
Are you wondering how to wear a boot knife in cowboy boots? You have the advantage of a long boot, so concealing a boot knife is easy.
Use a holster for the blade and attach it to your leg or inside the boot, and you are good to go.
Key Features To Find The Best Boot Knife For You
There are many different boot knife blades, so choosing one comes down to personal preference.
Here are a few tips when looking for the best boot knife for you.
Consider the size of the blade. Some people like longer blades, but for a boot knife, you want to comfortably conceal and access it.
Too long, and it will poke out of your boot. Too short, and it may be hard to get at if it slips down.
You don’t want it interfering with your foot movement either. Try some on for size and see how it feels and functions.
You also want the blade to be thin, so it fits the contours of your leg. Weight may also be an issue when you are walking a long time wearing it.
Choose a lighter boot knife unless it is your primary blade, then you want something heavier.
Your boot knife needs to be durable and will either be stainless steel or high-carbon steel.
Stainless is more corrosion-resistant. But it can get dull quicker, while a high-carbon has a sharper edge but rusts fast.
A boot knife is more likely to get wet with snow, mud, and water, so stainless is the better choice.
The handle can be wood or synthetic. Synthetic is more durable, but wood just looks good.
You decide what is more important to you. I know what my choice is!
Usually, a boot knife with be two-sided and shaped in a long spear point. If it is being used as a weapon, go with this style.
For use as a survival tool, pick a knife that has a one-sided blade.
Always use your sheath when putting it in your boot. This is a no-brainer, but I have to mention it anyway.
If you jam an open blade into your boot, you’re gonna get cut real fast. And then you have to treat the injury, and in a wilderness situation, you could get into big trouble.
Bottom line, sheath it!
Now you know everything about boot knives. Next, I want to help equip you and search the web for the best boot knives available today.
7 Best Boot Knives On The Market
1. Smith & Wesson SWHRT9B 9in High Carbon S.S. Fixed Blade Knife
Our first entry is the SWHRT9B from Smith & Wesson, which is impressive.
It’s a good-sized knife with a blade length of 4.7 inches and 9 inches with its full tang.
The blade is high-carbon stainless steel with a dual-edged spear point design. And it has an added blood grove.
The handle is black TPE rubber wrapped for excellent grip. And it has a lanyard hole and a sheath for boot mounting.
It’s a great EDC knife, and you can access it easily while having no worries about it slipping out of your hand.
Included is a black sheath to house the knife in your boot and a belt clip as well.
Smith & Wesson takes pride in manufacturing weapons. And they give that same quality to their knives.
They also guarantee this survival knife with a limited lifetime warranty.
The bottom line is this is a high-quality tool that will take care of all your knife handling needs.
2. Kershaw Secret Agent (4007) Concealable Boot Knife
Kershaw is a company that leads in the pocket knife market, and they have a great boot knife for us.
Let’s start with the blade. It’s a high-carbon, heat-treated stainless steel blade that is very durable.
With a single-sided edge, it works well for self-defense and bushcraft activities.
It’s coated in black oxide to make it corrosion-resistant. This gives the knife a badass look and also makes the blade magnetic.
A synthetic polymer handle finishes off this boot knife. And this design provides excellent grip with its textured rubber.
To house your boot knife, you get a top-notch sheath that is dual purpose with belt clip and slots for a leg and boot carry.
It has a stylish, no-shine matte finish that will fit well with your other survival gear for sure.
Pick up the secret agent boot knife from Kershaw.
3. CRKT Sting Fixed Blade Knife with Sheath
Columbia River Knife and Tool is a company committed to innovation. And their knife line and their everyday carry boot knife prove this.
The Sting was initially designed back in the ’70s by A.G. Russel. This is the tactical knife you want with you in a survival situation.
Sting is truly a walking knife with its solid, 3.2 inches, forged steel, two-edged blade. And its black coating provides enhanced corrosion resistance.
The steel alloy is hot forged from 1050 carbon steel, like Samurai swords. And it’s shaped into a spear point with its precision grinding.
The handle is contoured for maximum grip with outstanding balance. So you’ll have total control of the blade at all times.
There’s a nylon sheath, and glass re-enforces nylon insert to protect the blade. By clipping in and the strapping options are vast.
The Sting perfectly attaches to your leg inside your boot, but you can also clip it to your belt, pack or MOLLE set up.
A limited warranty for defects in material or workmanship rounds this boot knife out. A solid pick for your EDC.
4. Gerber Gear 30-001006N Ghoststrike Fixed Blade Knife
Ghoststrike is an American made fixed blade boot knife for:
- First responders
- Armed forces
- Anyone else that needs a secondary weapon in a tactical situation
This deluxe kit gives you everything you need, but let’s start with the knife itself.
The blade is constructed from 430HC steel and coated in black ceramic. This makes it low profile and corrosion-resistant.
It has a full tang grip while still being compact and light in hand. The contoured skeletal frame has a diamond textured rubber over the mold handle. One that easily conceals whether you wear it outside your boot or on your belt.
The kit includes the knife along with a modular sheath system. That way, it can be used for concealment or as an open carry weapon.
You also get a neoprene ankle wrap with a sheath mount so you can put it on your leg inside your boot or outside as well.
The sheath can mount on your bel vertically or horizontally.
Gerber makes knives that last and have a lifetime warranty for this knife in North America.
5. Schrade SCHF19 Boot Knife
Schrade is a company that takes pride in its knives. That’s why you can trust them with their boot knife.
Their best boot knife has a durable, 7Cr17MoV high carbon S.S. blade. It’s also connected to a thermoplastic elastomer handle. And the total length measures 7 inches with a 3.6-inch blade.
It weighs in at just over 2 ounces, so it is light and ready for action in all tactical situations.
It also comes with a black leather sheath with a belt loop if you want it at your side.
The ideal carry is clipped to your boot for a concealed, secondary weapon.
This is the ultimate secondary weapon that you want when the SHTF.
6. SOG Instinct Mini Small Fixed Blade Knife
SOG has a mini boot knife perfect for a small, fast-action weapon. It is only a 1.9-inch tactical fixed blade made from satin 5CR15MOV stainless steel with solid full tang.
The total length is 4.8 inches. This includes the G10 handle that provides ergonomic finger grooves for superior grip. It serves as a utility knife and combat-ready secondary weapon.
Because of its size, concealment for this EDC isn’t going to be a problem. The included swivel sheath clip attaches to your belt or a boot carrying setup.
You even get a neck chain for it to double (triple) as a neck knife!
SOG builds their knife line to outlast the competition, and they are proud to be U.S.-made.
Their name honors the Military Assistance Command, Vietnam – Studies and Observation Group. It is the perfect easy pack EDC weapon.
7. Cold Steel Counter TAC Series Fixed Blade Boot Knife
Do you want a boot knife from a company dedicated to making the sharpest knives in the world? Cold Steel has been doing just that for over 30 years, and their counter TAC series is the result.
They designed Counter Tac to be as functional as possible with an ultra-sharp AUS 8A full tang blade. It comes in measuring at a 5-inch blade length and 9.5 inches overall.
The blade is vacuum heat treated, then sub-zero quenched. This gives you exceptional durability and strength.
The grip is textured to provide a comfortable and adaptable grip. So you won’t drop this boot knife even if you lose your primary weapon.
A Secure-Ex is a state-of-the-art sheath that can clip on a belt or your boot and lashing slots for a lace carry.
These superior knives are ideal for military and law enforcement applications. But it should be an everyday carry for survivalists, hunters, hikers, and peppers.
Do you feel well informed about how to wear a boot knife now? If so, that’s because our goal here at Skilled Survival is to help you Prepare, Adapt and Overcome!
“Just In Case” Jack
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