5 Best Hook Knifes of 2020 - Review & Buying Guide

5 Best Hook Knifes of 2020 – Review & Buying Guide

As more brands enter the market, shopping becomes an ever more tedious task. From eCommerce to brick and mortar stores, you’ll encounter misleading product info, fake sales reviews, and endless marketing gimmicks. For a shopper looking for the best hook knives of the year, the amount of research involved in the task can be overly taxing. Our best hook knives of the year review should make your job easier.

The hook knife makes you think of Captain Hook’s arm in the Peter Pan tales. Well, its design entails a crooked knife that any woodcarver would find essential when making utensils. I am a carver myself, and I have used several carving tools, but nothing can be as convenient as a well-designed hook knife. These tools may similarly be used in cleaning horse hooves, hunting, and performing other tasks.

Morakniv Wood Carving Hook Knife 164, Right-Handed, w/Leather Sheath,...
BeaverCraft Wood Carving Hook Knife SK1 for Carving Spoons Kuksa Bowls...
Old Timer 157OT Golden Claw 8.5in S.S. Traditional Lockback Folding...
Flexcut Single Bevel Sloyd Hook Knife (KN52)
Narex 822101 Small Spoon Carving Hook Knife Right Hand 11/16 Inch Wide...
Morakniv Wood Carving Hook Knife 164, Right-Handed, w/Leather Sheath,...
BeaverCraft Wood Carving Hook Knife SK1 for Carving Spoons Kuksa Bowls...
Old Timer 157OT Golden Claw 8.5in S.S. Traditional Lockback Folding...
Flexcut Single Bevel Sloyd Hook Knife (KN52)
Narex 822101 Small Spoon Carving Hook Knife Right Hand 11/16 Inch Wide...
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Morakniv Wood Carving Hook Knife 164, Right-Handed, w/Leather Sheath,...
Morakniv Wood Carving Hook Knife 164, Right-Handed, w/Leather Sheath,...
BeaverCraft Wood Carving Hook Knife SK1 for Carving Spoons Kuksa Bowls...
BeaverCraft Wood Carving Hook Knife SK1 for Carving Spoons Kuksa Bowls...
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Old Timer 157OT Golden Claw 8.5in S.S. Traditional Lockback Folding...
Old Timer 157OT Golden Claw 8.5in S.S. Traditional Lockback Folding...
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Flexcut Single Bevel Sloyd Hook Knife (KN52)
Flexcut Single Bevel Sloyd Hook Knife (KN52)
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Narex 822101 Small Spoon Carving Hook Knife Right Hand 11/16 Inch Wide...
Narex 822101 Small Spoon Carving Hook Knife Right Hand 11/16 Inch Wide...
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Last update on 2020-08-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Best Hook Knife Buying Guide

As mentioned before, I have encountered many hook knives in my profession and can spot the mediocre from the best quality at a glance. But I wasn’t always a pro on this topic. My expertise in finding a high-quality hook knife comes after plenty of failures and mistakes. The most important lesson I learned over time is that you don’t need to overspend on these tools to get the best quality; however, the quality tools that will not disappoint you do not come cheap.

You don’t have to go through the frustrating buying-and-trashing or buying-and-returning experience that I went through with hook knives. This review will point you to the best devices on the market, and the compelling reasons as to why they are the best ones you’ll find. Before that, however, we’ll go through the buying guide that experts swear by, which also forms the basis for our best pick.

Ergonomics

Handheld tools like hook knives need to be properly designed to minimize trauma and injury to your wrist and hand. One of the user-friendly features you would want in your hook knife is a non-slip handle. Even though handles with a glistening finish may look appealing, they can be difficult to work with compared to knives with textured handles.

The handle length and width also matter a great deal. If the handle is too short, it will cause extreme pressure on the palm of your hand. Ideally, the right handle should extend the entire length of your palm (not less than 4 inches). The width should be about 1.5 inches to facilitate a less strenuous grip.

Handguard

Hook knives meant for hunting should feature a handguard because conditions can get slippery when gutting an animal. A handguard serves the simple role of preventing slippage. Carving hook knives with hand guards may also be excellent if you desire more chipping power and control.

Knife sheath

Sheaths don’t impact functionality, but they affect the user experience with the knife. A hook knife that comes with a sheath is easier both to store and carry around. It similarly minimizes the risk of accidents. Remember, too, that sheaths shield the knife and may help them stay sturdier and sharper for long.

The blade length

The internal radius or carving angle of your hook knife affects its performance. A shorter and more detailed blade produces finer carving results compared to a long and significantly curved blade. It follows that small blades can fit into smaller crevices of your wooden piece and create a more precise carve.

However, when working with larger workpieces, you’ll want a hook knife that helps you produce bigger chippings. This will enable you to finish the work much faster.

Single versus double edges

Working with a single-edged hook knife can be advantageous in that you place your thumb on the blunt side for more control in your carving task. Such push cuts are vital in precision jobs. However, single-edged hook knives can only be used by left-handed or right-handed people, depending on which side the sharp edge is placed.

The Best Hook Knives

  1. Morakniv Wood Carving Hook Knife 164, Right-Handed, w/Leather Sheath,...
    • Right-handed hook knife wood carving tool with an open 0.5-inch (13 mm) radius curve; single-edged blade suitable for pull cuts using one hand and push cuts using the other
    • Ideal for carving spoons, bowls, cups, or for any detailed relief carving; ergonomically designed, oiled birch wood handle is both comfortable and balanced
    • Top grade Swedish 12C27 stainless steel blade features excellent edge performance, razor sharpness, high hardness, and exceptional corrosion resistance

    Last update on 2020-08-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

    Editor’s Comments

What you have here is a steel blade knife hooked to a wooden handle. It’s a Swedish make, which should increase your level of confidence in it.

With steel construction, it will be able to withstand long-term use without the risk of rust and corrosion. Strength is likely a sure thing with this hook knife if you have to use it for tough carving jobs.

Take note that the edge tapers off to a skinny end. That could mean that this knife will not hold its edge for long.

The design is also ideal for horse farriers. The single-edged blade makes it ideal for scraping out dirt and debris lodged in a filly’s hooves.

What is most attractive with the Morakniv model, in my opinion, is its ergonomically designed handle. Working with small, handheld tools like this can often put you at risk of repetitive motion injuries if they are not well designed. The wooden handle is smooth surfaced and wide girthed so you can hold it comfortably in your hand. Ideally, you will be able to work for longer periods of time with this knife without the risk of fatigue.

The knife’s total length is 6.3 inches. The slightly longer handle provides assurance that it will fit in your hand comfortably. The blade length is 2 inches and curves out at a wider angle than many other models in the market. It’s possible that designs like this help with accuracy, especially for carvers working on larger pieces such as bowls.

The Morakniv hook knife weighs only 2.1 ounces. That’s good news because you don’t want to be working all day with a knife that’s heavy and difficult to handle. Accuracy and speed would be hard for you to achieve if dealing with a heavy tool.

Pros

  • The stainless steel construction makes it sturdy and durable
  • Ergonomically designed handle
  • Wide-angle blade for faster carving or hoof cleaning
  • Lightweight for ease of use

Cons

  • A little costly
  • Its edge is not smoothly beveled




  1. Sale
    BeaverCraft Wood Carving Hook Knife SK1 for Carving Spoons Kuksa Bowls...
    • ⭐️ WOOD CARVING HOOK KNIFE: Designed specifically for wood spoon carving, green woodworking, carving bowl, cup, kuksa and similar concave shapes or need a rounded edge to add some detail to your...
    • ⭐️ HIGH-QUALITY CARBON STEEL BLADE OF HOOK KNIFE: The blade of the hook carving knife is made of high-carbon steel and is hardened to proper firmness. The crooked knife for bowl carving is...
    • ⭐️ CUTTING EDGE is very sharp, which allows you to cut soft wood. The cuts are very smooth and shiny. The cutting edge of hook knives are durable to cut hardwoods such as oak or walnut.

    Last update on 2020-08-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

    Editor’s Comments

The BeaverCraft hook knife comes with exceptional qualities. First is the sleekly designed case that makes it possible to carry around the hook knife wherever your greenback boogie takes you. On top of that, you have a carbon steel blade that provides assurance for durability, and a sharp edge that should help improve performance.

I found that the carbon steel construction helps this device eat through harder woods like they are nothing. What’s more, its ergonomic design makes working with the knife an effortless task – feels good to hold all day.

The slightly flattened sides of the handle help yield reliable tactile feedback. In other words, you can control the knife better and more easily attain accuracy in your carving jobs.

The handle is thicker for user-friendliness, but note that this makes the knife a little heavier than the previous entrant in this review. The BeaverCraft hook knife weighs around 2.4 ounces.

Back to durability, the wooden handle is made of oak –  a hardwood synonymous with strength and durability. The linseed oil finishing makes this handle smooth and gentle on the users’ hands but beware of slippage.

One drawback of this model is quality control issues. The company may ship some products with blunt edges, but that shouldn’t be difficult to fix at home.

Pros

  • Carbon steel blade for durability
  • Oak handle for strength and durability
  • Ergonomic and slightly flattened handle for better control and comfort
  • Well smoothed edge

Cons

  • Not as surgically sharp as advertised
  • A little too small




  1. Old Timer 157OT Golden Claw 8.5in S.S. Traditional Lockback Folding...
    • DIMENSIONS: 8.5 inch (21.6 cm) overall length with a blade length of 3.5 inches (8.9 cm) and a weight of 5.6 ounces
    • DURABLE: Blade is made of reliable 7Cr17MoV High Carbon Stainless Steel with a sawcut handle
    • DEPENDABLE: Quick and easy access with the convenient size making it ideal for everyday carry

    Last update on 2020-08-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

    Editor’s Comments

Unlike the Morakniv and Beavercraft models reviewed earlier, the Old Timer 157OT Golden Claw is a dedicated hunting knife. It is a lock-back folding knife that you can take with you on your hunting trips.

The knife sports a stainless steel blade, which means the unit is impervious to rust and wear and tear.

The lock-back feature offers safety assurances. You only open the blade when it is time to gut some antelope (or other hapless creature); otherwise, it stays retracted within the handle.

The Old Timer 157OT Golden Claw features a kitchen-knife-like design except with a curved end. The overall length of the handle is 8.5 inches, which is a tad longer than the other reviewed models. This could help with ease of use, but note that the various knives in this review serve different purposes.

The blade is 3.5 inches long, and the whole contraption weighs 5.6 ounces. The nylon sheath included makes carrying around this knife a stress-free endeavor.

What’s worrying is that the gut hook does not stay sharp. You might have to carry a sharpening device around with you.

Pros

  • Comes with retraction folder for the blade
  • Blade and handle customized for hunting
  • Durable blade and handle
  • Comes with a sheath

Cons

  • No rubberized grip on the handle




  1. Flexcut Single Bevel Sloyd Hook Knife (KN52)
    • Based on the iconic traditional Swedish design
    • Ideal for spoons and hollowing bowls
    • The core of the blade is made of high carbon steel

    Last update on 2020-08-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

    Editor’s Comments

The blade is of a high carbon steel construction, just like with the other reviewed models. The overall length is 8 inches. For a wood-carving hook knife, this length makes the Flexcut KN52 the longest in this review. This feature will likely help with ease of use and better control.

The handle features a smooth finish and round structure. Despite its ergonomic length, however, the circumference of the handle might be too small for comfortable use.

However, the wooden handle is made from cherry, which makes it considerably durable. The blade fits through the handle, a feature that could help minimize the risk of the handle loosening.

This model is a little heavy (3.2 ounces) and has larger dimensions. The edge arrives sharpened and can stay sharp for longer than other similar products, according to the product description.

What could discourage a buyer from this product is the high price tag. The Flexcut 52 is by far the costliest model in the review. It is even more expensive than the models with outperforming functionalities, including the Morakniv and Beavercraft hook knives.

Pros

  • The long handle makes it more user-friendly
  • Sturdy blade construction
  • The blade fits through the wood to minimize loosening

Cons

  • A smaller diameter
  • A little weightier




  1. Sale
    Narex 822101 Small Spoon Carving Hook Knife Right Hand 11/16 Inch Wide...
    • This spoon-carving or hook knife is perfect for scooping out convex surfaces from spoons or bowls
    • Right hand version sharpened on one side designed to be pulled towards the body with right hand or pushed away using left hand.
    • Blade made from manganese alloy steel hardness of 61 HRc and will take and hold an excellent edge

    Last update on 2020-08-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

    Editor’s Comments

The Narex 822101 features a boldly carved design of an 11/16-inch-wide blade. The small size of the blade might be ideal for projects where precision and accuracy are of great importance.

Unlike the other units in this review, this model has the blade on the other end of the knife; it is designed for lefties. Right-handed persons, please note that it might be challenging to push through your workpieces with this tool using your left hand. Accuracy will be hard for you to achieve.

The blade features a manganese alloy steel. Although considerably strong, steel alloys are not as durable or corrosion-resistant as stainless steel. They are a strategy for manufacturers to keep production costs low; for you, that may mean you sacrifice durability to fit the purchase into your budget.

Please note that even though the small blade is a boon for accuracy, it is a bummer for carving speed. You won’t be able to remove as much material in each pass as with the other models outlined earlier.

You might find the angling of the cutting edge to be a bit strange; it’s not 90 degrees. That’s because the makers have made this knife specifically for carving out convex surfaces. It could work better for carving the outside of a spoon, for instance, than the inside.

Pros

  • Designed for lefties, a population often ignored by tool manufacturers
  • Manganese alloy steel construction might offer some degree of durability
  • Its small blade makes it possible for highly accurate carvings

Cons

  • Oddly beveled edge
  • The blade is too narrow




The Best Pick

The Morakniv Knife 164 is our top pick of the bunch. The hook knife has a steel blade and a wooden handle. Because of the stainless steel construction, this knife could serve you for many years with little risk of rust and corrosion. The stainless steel construction also makes it strong enough to chew through even the hardest of woods in your carving endeavors.

The handle features a user-friendly design. It is smooth surfaced and averagely girthed for a comfortable grip. Because of that, this knife causes less fatigue than the other models in the review.

The length of this hook knife is 6.3 inches; the manufacturers have made an effort to balance ergonomics and precision. The two-inch blade, meanwhile, chips wood at a wider angle than most other models. You may thus be able to finish your work much faster.

These features, as informed by our buying guide, make the Morakniv Knife 164 the best hook knife of the year.

Last Updated on

Tom Bradly
 

My entrepreneurial journey started in 2006, when I dropped out of university. I wanted to work with my hands, to build things. Now I mix my background with computers with my first-hand experience with woodworking to provide insights into the tools I like best. I love everything about woodworking and have been building stuff for over 20 years of my life. I hope to pass some knowledge and expertise.