Friday, May 22, 2009

Woodman's Pal


What's your opinion of the Woodman's Pal?



Hi Juan, definitely not something I’d buy.
This is a good example of the kind of gear I don’t recommend: Expensive, complicated and hype.
I know a few things about knives and if there’s one thing I know is that knives that have “This part is for cutting, this part is for peeling oranges, this part…” kind of blades are no good. It’s like attempting to make a multitool but spread along different parts of eh blade. It doesn’t work that way with knives.
I much rather save the 85 USD, buy a 20 USD machete that is without a doubt a better overall tool, and a small hatchet or sickle if that’s what I need.
Something similar happens with Tom Brown’s Tracker knife. It’s Hollywood hype, and it’s worth almost 300 USD.
300 USD for a knife that doesn’t come close to what a 50 buck knife will do, and only dreams of the capabilities of a 15 USD Bowie like the one by Cold Steel.
Maybe someone likes it, like with the TB Tracker. In youtube there’s a guy swearing by it and making a bow with it. Point is you can make a bow and 100 different other things better with a big knife, easier than with the TB Tracker, they just make an extra effort to supposedly prove they favorite toy is the best in the world.
For good tools check Ontario Knives as well.
Seriously, it’s complicated, and it’s neither an axe, nor a machete, nor a knife or a sickle.

It’s 85 dollars worth of gizmo that pretends to be all at once but is none of the things and will perform none of the tasks well.



Anonymous said...

I find that the best overall knife for the outdoor person, or a survivalist are the knives made by Busse.I've had mine for years,and they are virtually indestructible.

theotherryan said...

I wouldn't want someone to hit me in the face with it but I agree with you. I would pick up a couple machetes and call it good. The cold steel Kukuri is pretty darn nice though it is not economically wise. Bought one when I was a lot more free with money and don't regret it. Would have spent the cash on something and know I have a great blade.

Kerry said...

I generally agree that multipurpose blades are mostly hype. That said, I have been real pleased with the so called Spetznas machete imported to the US several years ago by Sovietski. My son and I have used it extensively in the woods and it has never failed us. Recently the US Forest Service issued Woodsman Pals to their fire crew. I heard the crew asked to send them back because they just weren't any good for what was needed.

Blackthorn D. Stick said...

I've owned one the Woodsmans Pals for about 4 years now. It's an orinal model from WW2. A friend of mine picked it up ceap on eBay and gave it to me as a gift. MFD. in 1943 (according to the stamp on the blade) it has the original leather handle and full metal guard.
I use it for yardwork, and I've taken it on a few camping trips. Works as advertised, and I've never had a problem with it. Although I will say that I think the current version is overpriced.
Still and all, it's a good piece of gear.

Anonymous said...

The Woodsmans Pal IS overpriced (buy on sale, saves about 20%), but in my humble opinion, worth it. That brush hook can be used to haul off thorny debris without reaching inside, and the extra length allows your back to remain more vertical. At the end of the day, your back thanks you. I've had mine around 6 - 7 years now, and its a good one.

For overall use though, the Air Force saw / machete has even better utility, at about 1/2 the cost (if can be found). Has a very aggresive saw back, and a 'J' shaped handle that allows it to be used the way a saw should be.

Just my .02.