What Is A Mora Knife?
If you’re looking for the best mora knife possible, you should know exactly what they are first.
Mora knives (also known as Morakniv) are fairly common as far as tools go. from hardcore survivalists to casual fishermen. They’re pretty handy to have under just about any circumstances.
Originally developed in Mora, Sweden… These knives have surged in popularity since their inception.
Originally, the knives had to be made in this region to be branded as Mora knives. Eventually the term ‘Mora Knife’ began to apply to all knives that mimicked their traditional style, rather than knives from specifically that geographical location.
Why Are They So Popular?
The reason they rose in popularity so much is largely due to their great functionality alongside their compact size. The fixed blade is pretty sturdy and can be sharpened easily. Maintenance is also pretty easy too. Mora knives are frequently rated amongst the most popular knives for use in bushcraft.
You can use them for anything. From preparing freshly caught fish to cutting up wood & stripping off tree bark.
If a tactical knife with this level of utility interests you, read on. We have prepared a guide to help you pick the best possible knife for you.
We’ve also reviewed 5 of our favourites in an effort to help you locate the best mora knife possible.
1 – Morakniv Companion – 4.1 Inch Fixed Carbon Steel Blade
This heavy duty knife is made by a solid manufacturer, Morakniv. Morakniv manufacturer these blades out of Mora, Sweden. Making them ‘authentic’ mora knives. People don’t just purchase knives from them for their authenticity, though. They have a track record of making solid knives that can withstand the trials of the great outdoors.
The knife has a fixed blade made of high quality stainless steel. This steel has a high carbon content, making it extremely tough and durable. It can be sharpened repeatedly without being any worse for wear.
The 4.1 inch blade is razor-sharp upon arrival, you can pull it out of the box and start working with it straight away.
Moraknives have always primarily focused on function over form. Utility over aesthetics. However, this knife manages to pull off both with an awesome dark olive green sheath. This sheath matches the upper and lower regions of the knife handle exactly.
The handle itself has a curved ergonomic design, wrapped in Moraknivs patented high friction grip. This grip is designed to be used in all weather conditions, regardless of the temperature.
This knife can be used for virtually any survival task you throw at it. Gutting fish, skinning animals or general bushcraft purposes (stripping off material to tie a square lashing, for example). It’ll generally stay pretty sharp too, because of the quality of the materials involved.
Be Aware: Carbon steel can actually rust, you must ensure you spend some time maintaining this knife. Luckily, knife maintenance isn’t too difficult of a task. And the slightest bit of work maintaining this knife will guarantee you several years worth of constant usage.
2 – Morakniv Companion – Serrated
This knife is almost exactly the same as the regular Morakniv Companion. But there is one key difference – the blade is serrated.
Serrated blades are a bit of a hot button issue amongst outdoor enthusiasts. Although some swear by them, others feel like they’re a waste of time.
Your choice of knife honestly depends on your choice of activity. Do you expect to be regularly cutting through harder & thicker surfaces like wood? a serrated blade might save you a headache.
Almost everything else about this knife is identical. It still features the ergonomic grip, the blade is still made from a high carbon steel and requires the same level of maintenance.
Be Aware: Serrated blades can’t be sharpened conventionally. You need a sharpener specifically designed for serrated blades. These tools are in plentiful supply online and offline though. So it shouldn’t be too difficult to obtain one.
3 – Morakniv Garberg Full Tang B01K1KL35O
The Mora Garberg is the only full tang knife manufactured by Morakniv. If you’re unfamiliar with what this means, we’ll explain.
The tang of a knife is the unsharpened, unflattened rectangular metal portion of a blade. This segment extends into the hilt/handle of your blade. If it extends fully into the base of the handle then it’s full tang.
Full tang blades allow you to exert far more force than the alternatives. They also tend to weigh a little bit more.
Full tang aside, it has a 4.3 inch blade made with high quality 14C28N Sandvik Steel. This is an exceptionally uncommon, quality steel for a Morakniv blade.
What Else Does It Have?
It also has an impact resistant handle made of Polyamide and an authentic leather sheath.
If you’re looking for a knife that’ll withstand some serious trauma, this one is it.
The spine of the blade has been ground down to a square edge. This means that you can use a firesteel striker to start fires in a camping or even survival scenario.
It can be used for carving, feathering & batoning without fear of degradation.
This knife has a slightly higher price point than just about every other knife manufactured by Morakniv. And for good reason, this knive could easily last you decades with the proper care.
4 – Light My Fire – Fire Starter Mora Knife
This particular blade comes from a different manufacturer. They’re also from Sweden, and also frequently manufacture high quality goods. But they tend to specialise more so in general outdoor supplies rather than just knives.
With that in mind, this knive is of an outstanding quality. Its unique selling point is that it can actually be used to start fires. The blade material is manufactured using their patented FireSteel®, originally developed for the Swedish department of defense.
The back end of the blade, or the ‘spine’ has been ground to enhance friction when striking it with the FireStarter. This produces more sparks/heat and will allow you to start a fire much easier. The FireStarter also neatly tucks into the handle of the blade, preventing you from losing it when you need it most.
How Practical Is It?
The FireStarter is rated as useful for up to 3000 strikes, meaning you’ll be able to get some serious use out of it before you need to worry about replacing it.
It can also work whilst wet, which is incredibly useful if it’s pouring down and you need a fire for warmth. You don’t need to worry about degradation in the rain either as the Sandvik steel used to manufacture these knives is rust resistant.
The ability to start fires isn’t just some marketing gimmick either. The actual quality of the blade is impeccable and it can be used for all of the same tasks a regular craftsmans knife could.
Whilst the spine of a normal variant could theoretically be used to light fires, this is a much better alternative.
The convenience of integration into the handle of the knife, along with the specialised materials involved mean that you should definitely opt for this model if you’re planning on starting fires.
5 – Morakniv Clipper 840
This knife could be summarised in one word as “workhorse”. Many who have purchased the Clipper 840 can attest to its ridiculously long shelf life. Even if you leave the knife outdoors to degrade, the high strength of the materials comprising the knife mean it’s an easy fix. Simply sand off the rust and coat with oil and you’ll be good to go.
With that being said, if you actually take care of this knife and put some effort into maintaining it, there’s no reason it couldn’t last you the better part of a decade, perhaps longer. You can opt for the stainless steel variant if you are looking for long term rust protection. But this knife alone will still slice through just about anything you throw at it after years of use.
It’s also relatively inexpensive, it’s rare to see this knife go over 20 dollars in price. With that being said it’s easily worth double that price based on shelf life alone.
The black plastic sheath comes with a belt clip, so you can safely transport this knife without having to lug it around everywhere. The blade length is a standard 4.1 inches, this is fairly normal for a mora variant, they rarely have any reason to be much bigger.
It comes with the standard morakniv high friction handle to allow you to operate under most circumstances. It’s also incredibly lightweight, weighing in at only 103g.
The blade isn’t very thick either, making it perfect for jobs that require a lot of finesse.
Despite its lightweight and thin blade, it can actually withstand a fair amount of abuse. But if you’re looking for ridiculous levels of durability, you should look at the knife below.
6 – Morakniv Robust
The MoraKniv robust more than lives up to its name. whilst it only has a blade length of 3.6 inches, what it lacks in length it makes up for in strength. It’s easy enough to explain why it’s strong, but it’s much easier to show you just how strong it is. A popular youtube channel for bushcraft lovers has already put this knife through a pretty rigorous destruction test that you can watch below.
Why is it so tough? that’s simple. The blade itself is much thicker than that of a regular morakniv, it’s also slightly shorter. Both of these factors contribute to an overall greater structural integrity.
Mix that with the fact that the blade is made out of an incredibly tough, high carbon steel and it’s not particularly surprising that this knife is so durable.
It’s tough enough that you can baton with it, cutting through branches as thick as 3 inches or so for kindling.
It arrives incredibly sharp out of the box so you should take care when first handling it.
It more than fulfils its purpose as a morakniv too, the slightly thicker blade doesn’t detract from it’s functionality at all. Many people actually prefer this knife to the more popular Morakniv knives that are in circulation.
7 – The BAHCO – Cuchillo Carpintero
Whilst this blade isn’t often marketed as a morakniv, it is. It’s made from the same quality Swedish steel as a traditional morakniv would be. It’s name translates to “carpenters knife”.
This should give you a bit of an insight into just durable this knife is. It’s fit for every day occupational use.
If you’re shopping around for a mora knife and you work in an industry such as carpentry or joinery, this one will be ideal. It’s also perfectly well adapted for fishing, bushcraft, hunting and general gardening. Truly a multipurpose knife.
Mora Knives – A Buyers Guide:
Want to know what to look out for in a mora knife so you can make up your own mind? There are a few key factors that should be taken into consideration. This guide will break some of them down. If you have read this buyers guide and are still unsure, you can rest easy knowing all 6 of the knives in these guide have been personally selected by us. Every single one is bound to last you a considerable period of time. You can subject the above knives to some seriously heavy use and not expect to see much degradation.
Key Factors To Consider When Shopping For The Best Mora Knife
Luckily, there aren’t a great deal of factors to worry about when selecting your mora knife. Never the less there is some key information you should be privy to before making a purchasing decision.
Handle Used – Under no circumstances would you want a handle that doesn’t provide you with a reasonable level of grip. Luckily most Morakniv brand knives utilise their high friction, weather proof handle. Be wary when buying off-brand knives and make sure the handle/grip gets a good write up before purchasing.
Blade Size – The size of the knife affects a variety of factors. Knives with thicker and stubbier blades are able to withstand a lot more pressure/tension. Consequently, stubbier knives may have a harder time preforming cuts that require a bit more finesse.
The length of the blade is often a deciding factor for most. Do you plan on using your knife for hunting? A longer blade length will save you a headache if you’re trying to skin some prey.
Metal Used – What metal was used in the construction of the knife? Some materials are more durable than others, some require less maintenance etc.
As a general rule, high carbon steel will require you to maintain your knife more regularly, whereas stainless steel wont.
With that being said, stainless steel knives should still be given an occasional clean, followed by drying and oiling. This will further prolong the longevity of the knife and ensure it stays functional for as long as possible.
The trade-off with high carbon steel is that it’s incredibly tough. Blades manufactured from this material won’t be snapping any time soon, and you’d struggle to find the conditions necessary to chip the metal of the blade.
Morakniv have 4 “go-to” metals they use when manufacturing a knife. These are as follows:
- Triflex Steel
- 12C27 Stainless Steel
- HRC61 Carbon Steel (Normally laminated, encased on either side with softer steel)
- UHB-20C Carbon Steel
Want more info on knife maintenance? read the guide below.
Knife Maintenance – A Brief Guide
Getting The Most Out Of Your Knives
Let’s say you’ve obtained the best mora knife. Nothing else can physically top it and it’s absolutely perfect for your needs. It won’t stay that way for long if you don’t take care of it.
Mora knives are built with the sole purpose of lasting as long as physically possible. But despite this, all knives need at least some level of maintenance to guarantee they continue to work at peak efficiency.
So taking the vital steps to maintain them will always result in a knife that stands the test of time. Whilst it may be better for the environment to extend a products shelf life, It’s also better on your wallet.
It’s important to keep your knives dry and clean. If you’ve taken your knife out for an extended period of use, you should make sure you clean and dry it thoroughly. There are a variety of different substances you can apply to your knife to improve its longevity also.
Cleaning & Drying Your Knife
Mora knives should never be machine washed, they’re not cutlery. The detergent used in most dishwashers is incredibly harmful to the blade.
Gently clean your knife with bristled brush. Old toothbrushes are absolutely perfect for this task. Use warm water and a little bit of soap to remove any dirt/residue that may be clinging to the knife.
Make sure you clean the whole knife, not just the blade for an even job.
Once your satisfied with the result, simply dry with a soft cloth thoroughly and allow it to air-dry for about 15 minutes.
Treating Your Knife
Once the knife is clean and dry, you can apply any one of a huge variety of topical treatments.
Our personal favourite knife oil is from Citadel Black. It’s a food grade oil so it’s safe to prepare food with a knife that’s been oiled with it. Furthermore, it’s compatible with BOTH carbon steel and stainless steel knives. This means that regardless of the knive you’re applying the oil to, it’ll likely do the trick. It can even be used in the maintenance of a katana (popularly known as a samurai sword.)
There are other oils out there on the market, so don’t be afraid to shop around. But from personal experience we have found that citadel black is one of the more reliable brands that consistently churn out high quality product.
There are a handful of questions survival enthusiasts may wish to ask about these knives, we’ll quickly address some of these before our conclusion.
Are Mora Knives Full Tang? – Currently the only full tang knife they offer is the Garberg, which is number 3 on our list.
Can You Get Mora Folding Knives? – Mora Knives are fixed blade by definition. So it’s unlikely you’ll find a bigger manufacturer churning out folding variants. There are guides online that detail the process of converting a Mora into a folding knife, but we don’t recommend following them unless you’re fairly experience in such things.
Our Big Conclusion
Owning a variant of these is a surefire way to guarantee you won’t have to buy another knife for a few years. They’re capable of carrying out a wide variety of tasks. Small nuances in their design can make massive differences in how well suited they are to specific tasks.
Overall, if you’re going for a quality Mora Knife, it’s likely you’ll end up purchasing a Morakniv branded one. With that being said, there are plenty of other brands out there who make high quality knives out of the same Swedish steel.
Like all knives, they require a bit of TLC, perhaps less so than most if you opt for a stainless steel variant.