A woodsmans knife: Morakniv Companion

At this point I am sure most of my readers and friends understand that while I do not enjoy spending money on name alone, I am still a fan of solid equipment. Knives are an area I have quite a bit of experience in.

Early on in life my father decided to start building them. He built a forge and had all the necessary tools. I can remember many days spent watching him take a slab of steel and heat, beat and quench it into something beautiful. I still have the first bowie knife he ever built and cherish it, though in my juvenile haste it has seen far more rough and improper use than it should have.

These days I carry well made folders with my standard edc being a benchmade/Emerson designed cqc7. In the middle to late 90’s this knife was the pinnacle of folding knife technology. Fast forward 20 years and you see literally hundreds of knives that are just as good bejng built for much less and lasting longer in some cases. However, this is a review of a budget survival/prepper/camping/hunting/bushcraft knife that I have latched onto and now carry in all my go gear as a standard piece of invaluable equipment.

The MORAKNIV swedish made mora styled Companion comes in stainless steel and carbon steel. 12C27 Stainless Steel, UHB-20C carbon steel are the two steels most often found in these knives. Both of these steels are rated medium to high for quality depending on who you speak with. My opinion is based on having used both types of steels and even abused it according to many knife enthusiasts.

Over the course of the last year I have used both a stainless version and a carbon steel version and the following is my findings in order.

1. The carbon steel blade holds an edge much longer though it is far more brittle and chips easily when confronted with non living materials like rocks. It is harder to sharpen, though in reality neither is as hard to sharpen as some blades thanks to the very long, shallow grind the factory applies.
2. The stainless is more weather resistant and less likely to stain when confronted with materials that normally stain carbon steel blades. It is also slightly easier to sharpen though it does not hold as clean an edge for as long.
3. Both knives preformed well in small cutting tasks and when making firestarting materials.
4. Both knives withstood quite a pounding when used to baton though the average diameter of materials being batoned was under four inches due to the blade length itself.
5. Both knives stood up to mild prying and use as wedges in larger wood splitting. (Wood used was a mixture of pine, scrub oak and mesquite)
6. Both knives work for fire steel use.
7. The carbon steel blade was much easier to use for skinning, filleting and preparing food. Though the stainless worked admirably and I wouldnt feel less a man for using it instead.
8. Both knives are built with 3/4 tangs so would not likely work well as steps for climbing or to beat down walls. However, they are more than sturdy enough to be used in bushcraft work and be relied on.
9. Both knives cost under $15 on Amazon.com and even if I paid $25 -50 I would feel I recieved a good deal.
10. The carbon steel knife recieved a bath of apple cider vinegar boiled and bathed, etc , to put a patina on it which resulted in a more durable knife with regards to water and weather.

I have purchased one for each child and have two or more in each go bag as well as vehicles and on various camping rigs. I feel quite confident in my belief that this is a very well built knife and while it is not made for fighting or tactical use it will work extraordinarily well for bushcraft/survival.

Free the mind and the body will follow.


About Jesse Mathewson

Jesse Mathewson is the author of the popular blog, jessetalksback.com and provides commentary to many varied places based on a background that includes education in criminal justice, history, religion and even insurgency tactics and tactical training. His current role in his community is as an organizer of sorts and a preacher of community solidarity and agorism. He also runs Liberty Practical Training, a self defense school specializing in the practical applications of defensive approaches versus the theoretical. As an agorist, voluntaryist and atheist his life is seen as crazy and wild by many, though once they get to know him most realize he is a bluntly honest individual who will give you the shirt off his back if he believes it is necessary to help you. Very simple, "That which is voluntary between all individuals involved is always right, if it is not voluntary, it is always wrong."
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6 Responses to A woodsmans knife: Morakniv Companion

  1. Jack says:

    I have two Mora’s. One in stainless, and one in carbon steel. I love them both, and don’t get to use them as often as I would like. I will say, with quite a collection of knives, the Mora is one of my favorites, and usually comes out of the box as a first choice to compliment another knife in the field for a weekend adventure. It can double as an EDC fixed blade knife for heavier tasks if you don’t mind the blade length as well, although I find myself grabbing my Ontario RAT3 as a full tang alternative as a fixed blade EDC knife…


    • The rat is a great knife…i am partial to my opinels, benchmades, moras and fiskar machetes –

      I would tend to agree, not nearly enough time for camping eh? 🙂


      • Jack says:

        I have both a Fiskar axe and hatchet. I think they are the best things on the market. I have a rat 3 and 5, as well as a bunch of knives I will classify as “camp knives” made for lighter activity, etc. as well as several others. Like many of us, I have a variety of knives for various purposes. The next knive(s) I buy though, are going to be a set of the Onterio Hickory kitchen knives. 🙂


  2. MORA, my favorite solid blade.
    You are so right about the stainless not holding an edge for long but I carry a small slip stone and two or three wipes and it’s back to it’s “one step below razor” level.
    I’ve broken all sorts of knives in the field by my current Mora is 8 years old and still as good as new. Backed up with my kukri, that’s just about all I will ever need.
    Solid article! 11/10


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