Blade Show West, which previously took place in Long Beach,...
Inspired by our (collectively speaking, so we're including you) favorite zombie-infested TV show (damn those mid-season breaks), we decided that it was high time we took a look at long-bladed tools that can not only clear a path through dense jungle, but can also pull defensive duty if needed. Yep, no surprise here — we're talking about machetes.
Machetes are versatile tools used mostly for yard work, farming, and clearing brush. Our little buddy Gilligan is known to split open coconuts for Mary Ann's famous pies with a machete once in a while, too. As useful as they are as tools, machetes also have a storied history of being used by many civilizations around the world as vicious edged weapons. Each culture has its own variation of the machete, influencing the design and build of modern versions that you can buy today.
Modern-day machetes are usually made with a full tang, meaning that the metal of the blade extends down the entire length of the tool. The blade is usually uniform in thickness, while the handle is made of two grip plates (or scales) that are fastened to the tang. Because they need to withstand repeated hits on hard surfaces, quality machetes are made with blades that can resist chipping and breaking and can be easily sharpened.
In this guide, we examine eight machetes of various sizes, shapes, and budgets. No doubt you'll find at least one that can supplement your off-grid needs — and help you channel your inner Rick Grimes.
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