Many types of knife blades
There are many types of knife blades of different shapes in circulation that are each designed for better use in specific situations.
Some of the most common knife blade types include, among others, the clip point blade , the spear point blade, trailing point, and the drop point blade. While these different types of knives may be familiar to many experienced outdoorsmen, there are plenty of people that will only know them by look and not the name.
They may, therefore, be unaware of their unique advantages and disadvantages in comparison to other blade types. The shape and style of your knife blade is just as important of a factor in the usefulness of the knife as the overall quality of the build of the knife and the materials that were used to make it.
Check out this detailed post if you want to know more about all the different types of knife blades.
Clip point blades
While laymen may look at knife blades and believe they differ for purely aesthetic purposes, different types of knives are actually carefully designed to better serve specific functions both in the outdoors and around the house. There is nothing accidental about the shape, style, and texture of your knife.
Given all these inherent differences, there are many advantages and disadvantages when it comes to different styles of knife blades. One of the most common knife blade shapes you will find on the market today is the clip point knife. A very common and easy to spot knife featuring a clip point is the Bowie knife.
A versatile and sharp blade
Clip point blades have achieved immense popularity among both outdoorsmen and laymen due in large part to their versatility. This type of knife blade is commonly featured on a wide variety of fixed-blade knives and pocket knives.
Clip point are great all-around knives that are likely to be featured in any knife collection. There is a very good chance that you are familiar with the it whether you know it by name or just know it by its unique appearance.
The different parts of the blade each serve a different function that you can make use of in different situations. Read on and we'll take a look at the several functions and features of the clip point while also comparing and contrasting it with other popular knives. By the end, you will know how to get the most out of your knife and when it's most appropriate to use this style .
The meaning of the clipped point
Clip point blades are named as such due to the appearance of them being clipped off at the tip. The upper spine of the blade will clip off near the last half, third, or fourth of the blade closest to the point, forming an extra-fine point that is absolutely perfect for piercing and puncturing.
This point, unsurprisingly, is referred to as the "clip". This lower point makes the clip-point blade both sharper than other blade types and absolutely ideal for situations that will require from the user some very fine and precise control during when making a fine cut.
This clipped portion can be either curved or straight depending on the specific knife in question. A curved point will generally be even sharper than a straight point. Clip points blades will also usually feature a very fine inverse belly on the upper side of the spine that has a bevel and adds to the slicing versatility.
This belly can be sharpened to make the piercing and puncturing power of the cutting edge even greater. This is in direct contrast to the Drop point styles of Knives, which has a somewhat "hunched" spine that tapers slightly towards the tip.
Finer and thinner than some other blade types
The point of the clip blade will be a good deal finer and thinner than the blade is where it meets the handle. This is because the thickness of the tip decreases along the spine. Sharpening the top side of the spine near the point will enhance the effectiveness of the tip it comes to piercing and puncturing.
In contrast, another common blade type, the drop point blade, is thicker near the point. This decreases its puncturing ability greatly but increases the amount of strength that can be exerted when it comes to making a tough cut or slicing through tougher hides. Drop point blades are not as effective at performing fine work when field dressing game as a clip point is.
Clip point knives may not be ideal for situations such as skinning and carving of larger animals with tough hides that require laborious and drawn-out cuts, but they are the perfect design for the quick and hard stabbing motions necessary when piercing and puncturing lighter materials while also offering a good deal of precision and control.
Another great puncturing blade is the Tanto Blade. It has a sharply angled chisel tip and a much straighter blade profile. This also make it a great puncturing tool, however, it is not nearly as refined for cutting and slicing as the clip point. If you want to to know more you can read all about the Tanto blade benefits and drawbacks here.
Can be a bit weaker than other blade styles
Due to it being very thin and fine, the tip of the clip point can be quite a bit weaker in comparison to certain other blade types such as the drop point blade. Clip point blades are exceedingly sharp and will puncture fast and effectively so long as they are strong enough at the point to hold their own against whatever material you wish to puncture.
If the blade doesn't make the puncture upon the first stab than you might run into some difficulty and could even run the risk of breaking your knife . The weakness of the point can often make it so that it's hard to use for some outdoorsmen in situations that require strong and forceful thrusting, so you'll have to pick and choose the right knife blade type for you when it comes to your situation and needs.
Regardless, it is likely that you will want to have a clip point hunting knife on hand in your arsenal. While the clip point is great for hunting uses you may want to look at a more versatile blade shape such as a drop point blade or a leaf shaped blade for your next EDC pocket knife.
Different parts of the blade for different uses
The many varying textures and widths that are featured all up and down the entire length of the clip point blade on both the under and upper side make the clip point blade one of the most versatile all-purpose knife blades on the market. This makes it is just as apt for use in general chores around the house or campsite as it is for hunting and skinning many smaller animals that don't have too tough of a hide.
This is another reason that this style has become so common among hunters and knife users in general. This contributes to it being very common despite many not even knowing it by name. You can use your clip point knives in a wide range of situations, but you will always run the risk of breaking the tip if you are using it in a situation that may pose a challenge to its exceedingly narrow point.
Many hunters and outdoorsmen have broken the tip of a clip point by trying to get it to do something that it wasn't made for just because it was the closest blade they had in proximity due to its versatility of use. Clip points knives are not known for their strength but rather their sharpness, versatile cutting edge, and precision.
They will always have a hard time comparing to the strength of a drop point against exceptionally tough materials. Their fine points are better put to use in situations that call for the utmost control and precision.
A great all-purpose blade type
A clip point blade is more of an all-purpose knife blade than a knife blade that is designed specifically for use in the outdoors or while hunting. You can still get plenty of use out of it when for field dressing smaller animals so long as the hide of the animal isn't too tough or thick.
Compared to a drop point, The real value of the clip point comes into light due to its all-around versatility compared to other blade shapes. While the drop point is considered more specifically a blade that can be put to great use when hunting and skinning a large animal, clip point knives can still be used for hunting and skinning smaller animals.
More often though, they are better put to use in general chores around the household or camping area. Clip point blades are great for cutting rope and sculpting twigs, for instance. Hence their ubiquitous appearance on many utility knives and pocket knives.
To put it simply, drop point knives are the kind of blade you will want to use for carving, skinning, and hunting larger animals, while clip point knives are more suited for piercing, puncturing, and common tasks around the household or campsite that require both extreme sharpness and precise control.
We have a detailed breakdown about what is the best knife for camping if you want to read more about what makes a good camping knife.
A great addition to your knife arsenal
Always be sure to remember when picking out a knife blade and stocking your knife arsenal that there is no single knife blade that will be absolutely perfect for use in all situations. If you are someone who will need to perform a wide variety of tasks and will need knives perfectly suited for all types of functions, you are going to want to make sure you procure a large variety of different blade styles to beef up your arsenal for use in the outdoors and during tough situations.
With all that said, clip point knives are certainly one of the most versatile knife blades out of all the different knife blade styles. You will just have to become accustomed to its specific weaknesses so that the finely pointed blade shape doesn't accidentally break off or fracture on you in the heat of the moment when performing an important task.
The sharpness of the tip makes it weak in comparison to other blade styles, such as the drop point so always remember that while it is a great all-purpose knife for many general uses, there are also many situation it can be put into that are liable to break or fracture its very thin and sharp blade.