Favorite Large Chopper

longbow

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Jan 9, 1999
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I picked up a Rock Island 1907 reproduction bolo based on the design from the Moro Wars in the Philippines. Hands down the best large blade chopper I've ever used and that includes my CS Trail Boss I used to keep under the back seat in my truck. The bolo now resides there. Used it on some bigger limbs I cut down off some trees in my back yard and worked effortlessly on the swing and the bite into limbs as big as my wrist and easily cleaved limbs near as big as my wrist and I have large wrists. Worked better frankly than any bowie I've owned or currently own, or kukuri of which I have a few. It is rock solid too. So there ya go. stay safe and keepem sharp
 

HJK

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Jun 30, 1999
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Knowing nothing about choppers, I wonder why they are preferable to small to medium size hatchets or pruning saws? Is it just a big knife thing or do they outperform a hatchet/axe, saw?
There are very experienced people that do things very differently from each other and prefer different things largely by what they learned and got used to, so I'm not pretending to set down any rules. But for serious chopping you take an ax and some would say a saw. i never had much use for a hatchet, although that doesn't stop me from having too many. I don't mind having a "heavy" chopperknife for light chopping for all the reasons the fishface said, but that means a second knife for cooking and one for the pfd and a personal knife and a spare knife. Knives!~ AND MORE KNIVES!!!
Answer your question? ;)
 

CSG

Joined
Dec 15, 2007
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1,206
There are very experienced people that do things very differently from each other and prefer different things largely by what they learned and got used to, so I'm not pretending to set down any rules. But for serious chopping you take an ax and some would say a saw. i never had much use for a hatchet, although that doesn't stop me from having too many. I don't mind having a "heavy" chopperknife for light chopping for all the reasons the fishface said, but that means a second knife for cooking and one for the pfd and a personal knife and a spare knife. Knives!~ AND MORE KNIVES!!!
Answer your question? ;)
Thanks for the feedback, appreciate it. I camp less than I used to so I don't have much need for a lot of these tools these days. I think my largest knife is my Fallkniven F1 which works great for the minor tasks I throw at anymore.
 
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Apr 3, 2001
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Busse Basic 9. My all time favorite. Had it for years and beat the damn tar out of it. Never fails to chop whatever’s in front of it.

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May 22, 2019
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To keep my pack weight down, and for redundancy in an emergency or survival situation, I carry a large knife that can be used for multiple purposes. Even though blades longer than 10" probably chop wood better, I don't want to carry anymore weight or bulk than a 10" blade, and it's my upper limit for a large knife that can also handle smaller chores fairly well. I consider a finger choil to be a necessity in this case, adding a lot to a big knife's versatility. I also want a large chopping knife to have a spine at least .250" thick and much prefer Busse's excellent Resiprene C handles to anything else.

My favorite chopping knives are a Swamp Rat Battle Rat and a Busse Basic 10. Unfortunately neither are made anymore, nor is the Ontario SP-50, which I also like. If I were to get another big wood-chopping knife I'd consider Carothers or Bark River. I think the Junglas is a good knife, just would want a little more blade thickness and a finger choil.

CSG, for me it's as much about carry weight and bulk as performance. If someone or something carried my tools in the wilderness I'm sure I'd bring more, and more specialized, tools. As with many things in life, a big wood-chopping knife is a compromise but in this case I think it's a very good one.
 
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CSG

Joined
Dec 15, 2007
Messages
1,206
To keep my pack weight down, and for redundancy in an emergency or survival situation, I carry a large knife that can be used for multiple purposes. Even though blades longer than 10" probably chop wood better, I don't want to carry anymore weight or bulk than a 10" blade, and it's my upper limit for a large knife that can also handle smaller chores fairly well. I consider a finger choil to be a necessity in this case, adding a lot to a big knife's versatility. I also want a large chopping knife to have a spine at least .250" thick and much prefer Busse's excellent Resiprene C handles to anything else.

My favorite chopping knives are a Swamp Rat Battle Rat and a Busse Basic 10. Unfortunately neither are made anymore, nor are the Ontario SP-50s, which I also like. If I were to get another big wood-chopping knife I'd consider Carothers or Bark River. I think the Junglas is a good knife, just would want a little more blade thickness and a finger choil.

CSG, for me it's as much about carry weight and bulk as performance. If someone or something carried my tools in the wilderness I'm sure I'd bring more, and more specialized, tools. As with many things in life, a big wood-chopping knife is a compromise but in this case I think it's a very good one.
Thanks for your input as well.
 
Joined
Mar 16, 2007
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1,127
A second hats off to the Busse Basic 9. Great tool for chopping. The best one I can imagine is my Black Prince 18 inch machete by True Temper. That thing has been touched up and resharpened more times than I can remember, and the edge is gritty but keen. Cuts above the pay grade!

Honorable mention goes to my 1311, which in all honesty, is right up there with the best of them.
 

not2sharp

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Joined
Jun 29, 1999
Messages
18,969
I second that.
I have purchased several of Bill Siegle’s knives over the last 20 years and have been happy with all of them. He provides a solid and secure sheath. His handle ergonomics work great, and his blades hold up well. He is almost exclusively 5160 and knows how to work this material for optimal performance. No CNC embellishments (or pricing), but If you are looking for a camp knife that is set up as a real field tool get one of his knives. There are prettier knives out there at double or triple the price; they are worthy of display, Siegle knives are intended for hard use.

n2s
 

Humb baby

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Mar 29, 2017
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294
I really like the Aurora borealis Kodiak chopper. It is the only new chopper I’ve been wanting. If I’d had a little more disposable income when he launched them I would have been all over it. Just looks like a fun knife.hopefully there is another run and I can get in on the next one.
 

Mr. Tettnanger

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Jul 14, 2012
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726
There are so many good choices in useable choppers! I really LOVE the ESEE Junglas!

But, I have been leaning towards my Bushcraft USA/LTWK Serechete. It is a workhorse. It has a bolo type shape with the weight slightly heavy near the rounded tip. It has a 10 1/2” blade. It also has a scandi grind section on the first 3” of the blade. Very versatile woods tool! It is a better chopper than the Junglas.

You might want to look at the Ontario SP53 as well.


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Kailash Blades

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Nov 21, 2015
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Damn I've never seen a reinhardt kukri that beat up! Great to see it's seeing use and love in equal measure.

Kailash Blades Kukri for me.

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Thanks for the shoutout mate!

Knowing nothing about choppers, I wonder why they are preferable to small to medium size hatchets or pruning saws? Is it just a big knife thing or do they outperform a hatchet/axe, saw?
@fishface5 did a great job of explaining it really, but there's one thing he missed.
Walking around with a really big knife feels cool! Swinging one around is a lot more fun as well. If you spend a lot of time working outdoors but aren't under a time constraint or survival pressure the functional drawbacks are greatly outweighed by having a more satisfying and exciting blade experience that injects a bit more fun into your day.
 

Kailash Blades

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For my bushcraft choppers I like a more moderate sized blade (10-13") and love khukuris for the versatility they can offer. Big chopping power for less weight, recurve for snagging flexible branches and debarking, big belly for skinning and of course the cool factor.

For my favourite though I'd say it's gotta be this regent long knife prototype that's really been through the wars with my over the years. Thick enough to pry and split well, powerful enough to bring down large saplings and small trees, but not so long or cumbersome that I can't carve with it or do finer work. It never disappoints, it's beautiful and it's not too frightening for when I'm in mixed company. There's plenty of situations where I'd choose one of my khukuris over this mind you, but this fellow has really wiggled its way into my heart.

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Joined
Oct 23, 2010
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I've been looking at the Regent Long Knife, that one just ticks all my boxes! Beautiful piece of work. I hope things turn around soon, that one is at the top of my short list. I just had a rather extensive shoulder surgery, so chopping of any sort, for me, is not on the menu anytime soon. But I still have to wipe the drool off of my keyboard every time I look at that one...

Choppers are a relatively personal thing. I like kukris, I like Bowies, I like big camp knives. I'm particularly fond of the BK-4 Machax, a kukri/bolo hybrid, and practically indestructible. For me, that's saying something! But, if I know that some moderate chopping is going to be part of the festivities, I prefer a tomahawk. Anything more than that, I go straight to the chainsaw. And yeah, 'hawk or big chopper, they really are fun to carry around, and even more fun to actually use.
 
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Jul 18, 2010
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I recently decided that I "needed" to add a chopper to my collection. I was very close to pulling the trigger on a Junglas, but at the last minute stumbled across the Condor Plan A Bowie. I'm not sure why, but something about it drew my attention away from the Junglas. I have not used it much, but so far I have not been disappointed. I'm not saying I won't eventually buy the Esee but for now I'm satisfied that my big knife needs are handled with the Condor.

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Kailash Blades

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Nov 21, 2015
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I've been looking at the Regent Long Knife, that one just ticks all my boxes! Beautiful piece of work. I hope things turn around soon, that one is at the top of my short list. I just had a rather extensive shoulder surgery, so chopping of any sort, for me, is not on the menu anytime soon. But I still have to wipe the drool off of my keyboard every time I look at that one...

Choppers are a relatively personal thing. I like kukris, I like Bowies, I like big camp knives. I'm particularly fond of the BK-4 Machax, a kukri/bolo hybrid, and practically indestructible. For me, that's saying something! But, if I know that some moderate chopping is going to be part of the festivities, I prefer a tomahawk. Anything more than that, I go straight to the chainsaw. And yeah, 'hawk or big chopper, they really are fun to carry around, and even more fun to actually use.

Sorry to hear about your shoulder surgery! I did damage to mine 4 years ago and it's only really starting to clear up nowadays. Every time I overdid it while reaching for a car seatbelt or something it'd set me back about 6 months in healing I'd say. Please take it easy and give it the time it needs. Thanks for the kind words on the long knife too, it's a bit of a strange in betweener knife but I really do love mine.

That's something I really like about choppers compared to say bushcraft knives for example. There's a huge range of shapes and sizes that can all do the job and no real "right answer" like a mora. As a result the variety is huge and people can get really personal or eccentric with them and not end up doing "the wrong thing" in the eyes of the community.
 
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