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The Ultimate Firearms Destination for the Gun Lifestyle

Boot Knives

Unusual Suspects

Redundancy — while it’s seen as unnecessary by some, it’s made a priority by those concerned with personal protection. From tactical pens to concealed-carry pistols, a reliable backup tool or two can mean the difference between life and death. Therefore, we’re interrogating a lineup of boot knives. This type of weapon usually comes as a short, double-edged fixed blade that’s best for thrusting and carried in a sheath, which is either clipped to or tied around one’s high-tops.

Keep in mind, they’re not quick to deploy. You’ll have to either bend over, crouch down, or raise your ankle, then pull up your pant leg before drawing the blade. Also, boot knives come with certain legal responsibilities. Always check state, county, and town laws before you carry one. Still, if it’s permissible where you live and work, a boot knife can provide an added sense of security in peaceful times…and a tactical advantage in the worst of them.

Boot Knives photo

Make:
Columbia River Knife & Tool
Model:
Sting
OAL:
6.85 inches
Blade Length:
3.2 inches
Blade Material:
1050 carbon steel
Weight:
3.9 ounces
MSRP:
$70
URL:
www.crkt.com

Boot Knives photo

Make:
Cold Steel
Model:
Peace Maker III
OAL:
8.5 inches
Blade Length:
4 inches
Blade Material:
German 4116 stainless steel
Weight:
3.4 ounces
MSRP:
$31
URL:
www.coldsteel.com

Boot Knives photo

Make:
TOPS Knives
Model:
Ranger Bootlegger 2
OAL:
9.6 inches
Blade Length:
5 inches
Blade Material:
1095 carbon steel
Weight:
7.3 ounces
MSRP:
$159
URL:
www.topsknives.com

Boot Knives photo

Make:
Spyderco
Model:
Street Beat
OAL:
7.19 inches
Blade Length:
3.5 inches
Blade Material:
VG-10 stainless steel
Weight:
3.2 ounces
MSRP:
$280
URL:
www.spyderco.com

Boot Knives photo

Make:
Kershaw Knives
Model:
Secret Agent
OAL:
8.7 inches
Blade Length:
4.4 inches
Blade Material:
8Cr14MoV stainless steel
Weight:
3 ounces
MSRP:
$40
URL:
www.kershawknives.com

Boot Knives photo

Make:
SOG Specialty Knives & Tools
Model:
Pentagon
OAL:
9.75 inches
Blade Length:
5 inches
Blade Material:
AUS-8 stainless steel
Weight:
5.6 ounces
MSRP:
$104
URL:
www.sogknives.com

Boot Knives photo

Make:
Skallywag Tactical
Model:
Dagger
OAL:
7.85 inches
Blade Length:
3.85 inches
Blade Material:
D2 tool steel
Weight:
3.8 ounce
MSRP:
$225
URL:
www.skallywagtactical.com

Boot Knives photo

Make:
Boker USA
Model:
Applegate-Fairbairn Combat Knife
OAL:
9 inches
Blade Length:
4.75 inches
Blade Material:
440C stainless steel
Weight:
5.8 ounces
MSRP:
$190
URL:
www.boker.de/us

Interrogating the Unusual Suspects

CRKT Sting

Boot Knives photo

411:

CRKT gives this classic A.G. Russell design the modern production-knife treatment, producing strong results. Spear-point blade with dual plain edges is nothing to take lightly.

Pros:

  • Contoured handle with thumb detent, which is great for both grip and sheath retention
  • Cordura-coated Zytel sheath is multi-positional with adjustable straps.

Cons:

  • Got sweaty legs? The 1050 carbon steel blade has poor corrosion resistance.
  • Handle might be a little short if you have sausage fingers

Spyderco Street Beat

Boot Knives photo

411:

The Street Beat is the Porsche 911 of this group — beautiful, powerful, and expensive. It was created by Fred Perrin, a knifemaker, martial artist, and former French commando.

Pros:

  • Clip-point blade is made of premium VG-10 stainless steel and is razor sharp.
  • Boltaron sheath with a G-Clip system is great for boot or belt carry.
  • Quality construction

Cons:

  • Overly deep finger choil, which unnaturally alters our grip
  • The hefty price tag

Skallywag Tactical Dagger

Boot Knives photo

411:

This veteran-owned company creates top-notch, U.S.-made products for one purpose: saving and defending lives. Its Dagger is no exception. Comes in black and flat dark earth.

Pros:

  • Ambidextrous design features scary-sharp tip and edge.
  • Excellent Blade-Tech sheath (caveat: its Tek-Lok attachment is great for belts, but you’ll need to lace the sheath if you boot carry.)

Cons:

  • Hurts the wallet as much as it does bad guys — but you get what you pay for
  • The ring in the handle might take a little getting used to (but once you do…it’s go time!)

Cold Steel Peace Maker III

Boot Knives photo

411:

Cold Steel is known for resilient and powerful edged weapons promoted by over-the-top marketing. The Peace Maker III is a more subdued, affordable option without sacrificing any performance.

Pros:

  • Laser-like blade that’s great for various tasks, from camping to self-defense
  • Low cost for a good knife that feels great in hand
  • Lightweight and easy to handle

Cons:

  • Polypropylene handle gets slick in sweaty palms
  • Odd-shaped sheath makes it awkward to re-holster the knife smoothly

Kershaw Secret Agent

Boot Knives photo

411:

Kershaw’s newest boot knife merges aesthetics with ergonomics and economics. A tool that not only looks cool, but also works effectively for its price point. A secret agent, indeed.

Pros:

  • Textured rubber overmold on the glass-filled nylon handle offers a secure grip
  • Despite its mid-level size, the knife carries discreetly thanks to the slim sheath

Cons:

  • We know it’s designed as a budget knife, but we’d have been giddy like schoolgirls if the blade was made of S30V or 154CM instead of Chinese-made 8Cr14MoV.

Boker A-F Combat Knife

Boot Knives photo

411:

This is Boker’s iteration of the famed WWII-era knife by combatives pioneers Rex Applegate and W.E. Fairbairn. This model comes with a double bevel, a strong tip, and a Kydex sheath with Tek-Lok attachment.

Pros:

  • Old-school aesthetics with modern production values
  • Finger-guard enhances grip and prevents accidental cuts to the user
  • Durable Kydex sheath

Cons:

  • At 5.8 ounces and almost 200 bucks, it’s the portliest and one of the costliest knives of the bunch.
  • The well-formed handle can get slippery when wet.
  • Lacks a boot clip

SOG Pentagon

Boot Knives photo

411:

Originally made for cops and troops, there’s no surprise the Pentagon is popular with outdoor enthusiasts. It offers a sturdy grip, different carry positions, and a more versatile blade than most boot knives.

Pros:

  • Blade has one plain edge and one serrated edge, allowing for a wider range of uses
  • The rubber-like Kraton handle feels natural in hand
  • An overall tough, sharp knife

Cons:

  • It’s fairly large for concealed carry.
  • Sheath’s snap-button means a slower draw
  • There’s no boot clip, so you’ll need cord or laces to tie it to your boot.

TOPS Ranger Bootlegger 2

Boot Knives photo

411:

Made in the United States with input from former U.S. Army Rangers, this blade can seriously f*ck shit up — be it tinder, robber, or Taliban. A versatile knife for all sorts of outdoor adventures.

Pros:

  • Badass blade with TOPS’s patented Saw Teeth on the spine
  • Contoured Micarta handle fits perfectly in our palm
  • Good balance for a long blade and quite durable

Cons:

  • The sheath seems like an afterthought; the knife rattles inside it, while the buckle strap — the only means of retention — is too cumbersome to disengage quickly in an emergency.