The Versatility of Micarta Makes It A Great Option For Most Types of Knives From Fixed Blade Bushcraft to Gentleman's Carry Pocket Knives

The Versatility of Micarta Makes It  A Great Option For Most Types of Knives From Fixed Blade Bushcraft to Gentleman’s Carry Pocket Knives

Everyone has a preference, and for a lot of people it’s Micarta. For good reason. It’s a tough material, easy to clean, comfortable, and it usually looks nice. It does have the downside of making a knife more expensive than if it came in G-10 or even FRN, but it’s often worth the extra cash for the comfort and durability you get out of it.

I’ve tried to put together a list of knives with all different kinds of Micarta in them, but for the most part it’s canvas and linen Micarta out there. I’m always looking out for other decent knives in denim Micarta though, so I’ll probably be updating this every six months or so.

Fixed Blade

Micarta has become the darling for a lot of survivalists over the years. As a result there a lot more fixed-blade designs with Micarta scales. It makes sense, though. Micarta is incredibly tough and ages well, and the grippiness and comfort that comes along with it pairs well with heavy tasks like batoning and clearing brush.

Esee 3

The Esee 3 is one of the most popular bushcraft knives with a micarta handle.

  • Overall Length: 8.31”
  • Blade Length: 3.875”
  • Steel: 1095
  • Blade Style: Drop point
  • Handle Length: 4.375”
  • Handle Material: Linen Micarta
  • Grind: Flat
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Molded sheath
  • Price Range: $100 – 150

I don’t know if Esee started this Micarta bushcraft trend, but they’ve definitely perfected it. All the Esee fixed blade knives sport some kind of linen Micarta that handles jungle terrain very well. That’s the kind of place Pretty much all Esee knives are designed for, but the Esee 3 is probably the most versatile of their bushcraft knives. It’s right in that size range that’s easy to carry and well balanced, but still big enough to chop into some logs and heavier brush or branches. They make bigger knives that are probably better for trail blazing, but if I’m only taking one Esee on a hunting or camping trip, it would be the Esee 3.

 

Boker Bender

The Boker Bender has a micarta handle wrapped in parachord

  • Overall Length: 5.25”
  • Blade Length: 2.94”
  • Steel: 440C
  • Blade Style: Spear point
  • Handle Length: 2.31”
  • Handle Material: Canvas micarta w/ paracord wrap
  • Grind: Falt
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Kydex sheath
  • Price Range: $130 – 200

This is a heavily simplified design from Boker’s German factory. The stone-age type design feels like a cool thing to take out into the woods, but the 440C steel makes it a pretty formidable modern piece. They designed the handle for a paracord wrap, which is a cool idea, but can make the handle a little uncomfortable when you actually take the paracord off.

We may end up having to take this knife off of here eventually, as a dwindling presence in a few different online vendors seems to indicate it has been or will be discontinued. But we’ll see.

 

TOPS knives BOB Bushcraft Knife

The Bob Fieldcraft has a great micarts handle.

  • Overall Length: 9.875”
  • Blade Length: 4.625”
  • Steel: 1095
  • Blade Style:Drop point
  • Handle Length: 5.125”
  • Handle Material: Canvas Micarta
  • Grind: Scandi
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Kydex sheath
  • Price Range: $130 – 150

The BOB Bushcraft knife is probably the most established knife on this list, along with the Esee 3. It’s big and sturdy, and the Scandi grind is a pretty versatile edge to have in the bush, and not something you see often enough on America-made bushcraft blades. It’s good for hunting, clearing a path through heavy brush, and batoning. The Brothers of Bushcraft knife is just one of those mammoth designs that would do well as your go-to tool for everything in the field.

 

LT Wright Bushcrafter HC

The LT Wright Bushcraft has a classic design and micarta scales.

  • Overall Length: 8.375”
  • Blade Length: 4.0”
  • Steel: 1075
  • Blade Style: Spear point
  • Handle Length: 4.5”
  • Handle Material: Micarta (various)
  • Grind: Convex
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Leather sheath
  • Price Range: Around $105

From what I can tell, this knife mostly comes in canvas Micarta. I don’t have all the details, but some of the other options look like they’re made with a thinner type of linen. I could be wrong, but either way it’s a nice field knife. It’s not quite a level of performance with the Esee3 or the BOB. The 1075 carbon steel it uses is technically a step down in quality. Since it has a lower carbon content it’s softer than what most people prefer, but along with a convex grind it’s an incredibly tough knife.

 

Bark River Bravo Squad Leader

The Bark River Squad Leader is a very capable bushcraft bwie knife hybrid with a micarta handle.

  • Overall Length: 9.375”
  • Blade Length: 4.625”
  • Steel: A2
  • Blade Style: Clip point
  • Handle Length: 4.75”
  • Handle Material: Canvas Micarta
  • Grind: Convex
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Leather sheath
  • Price Range: $240 – 260

Put a handguard on this thing and it would be a pretty good Bowie knife. It’s perfectly fine the way it is, though. Bark River knows its way around bushcraft and hunting knives. The Bravo series in particular is a great line of designs for bushcraft. There’s not a lot of variation between the designs, but differences like a finger guard on one and a sharpening choil on the other, and jimping or a smooth spine on the other shows how much they get into the details of the thing. They’re always on the pricey end, but most people who have actually handled their stuff understand why. The Squad Leader design stands out with a very strong A2 steel and an extended butt with a lanyard hole that could double as a window breaker.

 

Bradford Knives Guardian 3

The Bradfor Guardian has micarta handle scales with a variety of color choices.

 

  • Overall Length:
  • Blade Length: 6.75”
  • Steel: Bohler N690
  • Blade Style: Spear point
  • Handle Length: 3.25”
  • Handle Material: Linen Micarta
  • Grind: Flat
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Leather sheath
  • Price Range: $110 – 150

It’s hard to overstate just how good and loved this model has become. Bradford makes knives the way Toyota made trucks in the 90s. They’re solid and tough, but so well designed and sized that they handle like a dream, and almost nothing you can do that will ever break them. The Guardian 3 has been the favorite of the Guardian series for a long time now, and frankly there’s not much sign of something taking its place soon.

 

TOPS Mini Scandi Knife

The Tops Scandi Mini is a smaller version of the popular Scandi model.

  • Overall Length: 6.125”
  • Blade Length: 2.75”
  • Steel: 1095
  • Blade Style: Drop point
  • Handle Length: 3.375”
  • Handle Material: Linen Micarta
  • Grind: Scandi
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Kydex sheath
  • Price Range: $65 – 80

On a less famous level, the TOPS Mini Scandi knife is one of those little underdog designs that came after a larger design and ended up being something pretty great. Designed as a neck knife, this is a pretty easy blade to pack around, but they’ve also made the handle pretty comfy to hold. The wide blade and 1095 steel make a good bushcraft combination, but with the modified Scandi grind and the overall size, this is really best for skinning and finer work like feathering.

 

Buck Selkirk

The Buck Selkirk has great looking micarta handle scales.

  • Overall Length: 9.5”
  • Blade Length: 4.625”
  • Steel: 420HC
  • Blade Style: Drop point
  • Handle Length: 4.875”
  • Handle Material: Linen Micarta
  • Grind: Flat
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Kydex sheath
  • Price Range: $45 – 60

We’re always looking for an excuse to sneak this knife into our articles. It’s ended up being one of our favorite carries for camping, and anytime we pick up a new bushcraft knife we tend to compare it to the Selkirk. It has a similar range of usefulness to the original BOB knife or the Esee 3 but in a slightly smaller package, and with a much smaller price tag. Plus, you could definitely argue Buck’s BOS 420HC steel is as good if not better in some ways for hunting than 1095.

If you’d like to hear us gush about it more, check out our full review of the Selkirk.

 

EnZo Trapper

The Enzo Trapper is a high end bushcraft knife with micarta scales.

  • Overall Length: 8.25”
  • Blade Length: 4.0”
  • Steel: Bohler N690
  • Blade Style: Drop point
  • Handle Length: 4.25”
  • Handle Material: Canvas Micarta
  • Grind: Flat
  • Build: Full tang
  • Carry System: Leather Sheath
  • Price Range: $100 – 175

The EnZo Trapper is in a similar size category with the Selkirk, but the price shoots up quite a bit. That has a lot to do with the Bohler N690 steel, which is a lot harder than 420HC. It functions about the same as VG-10 in terms of edge retention and corrosion resistance, so you could think of this as a very tough kitchen knife. That’s partially hindered by the flat grind, but where it loses a little bit of slicing ability for smaller things like cutting food or feathering, it gains a lot of toughness for harder bushcraft tasks.

 

Folding Pocked Knives

When you see Micarta on a folder, it’s usually some kind of limited edition or update on an older model, which makes this a hard section to fill out. But when you get a good folder in Micarta it really turns into a special thing. Just about all of them are designed as gentleman folders, but the toughness gained from the scale choice adds a lot of usefulness to these things.

Buck 110 Slim Pro

The Slim 110 Folder is a modern design update to Buck's most popular knife ever.

  • Overall Length: 8.625”
  • Blade Length: 3.75”
  • Steel: CPM-S30V
  • Blade Style: Clip point
  • Handle Length: 4.875”
  • Handle Material: Linen Micarta
  • Grind: Hollow
  • Carry System: Tip-up pocket clip
  • Price Range: $75 – 100

It’s harder to get away from the 110 design these days. Buck has really pushed this design to the edge with all its updates. Some of their new releases had rocky starts,they turned into solid modern EDCs once the wrinkles were ironed out. The 110 Slim Pro isn’t as tough in the blade as the original, but it’s a lot easier to carry and holds an edge longer. And where the blade carries a slightly higher risk of chipping, the Micarta handles are much better at handling dirt and moisture than the original wood handle. So even though Buck has kind of turned this into a gentleman folder for trendy knife people, it still serves just fine as a camping knife.

 

Boker Plus Kwaiken

The Boker Plus Kwaiken is a folding knife with a comfortable micarta handle

  • Overall Length: 8.375”
  • Blade Length: 3.5”
  • Steel: AUS-8
  • Blade Style: Trailing point
  • Handle Length: 4.875”
  • Handle Material: Linen Micarta
  • Grind: Flat
  • Carry System: Tip-up pocket clip
  • Price Range: $85 – 127

Boker is really pushing to capitalize off the popularity of this design, but they’re doing a pretty damn good job of it. The Kwaiken is a flipper adaptation from a fixed-blade by designer Lucas Burnely. The looks of this knife alone have done a lot to make it popular. It has the kind of viciously elegant aesthetic that nerds with gentleman folders like to pack around. But that big curve of the blade from the upswept design this a genuinely great cutting tool. It’s not a rough and tumble knife for smacking into wood, but for an urban EDC you could do a lot worse.

 

Benchmade Proper 319

The Benchmade Proper 319 is an excellent folding pocket knife with micarta handle scales.

  • Overall Length: 6.69”
  • Blade Length: 2.86”
  • Steel: CPM-S30V
  • Blade Style: Sheepsfoot
  • Handle Length: 3.83”
  • Handle Material:Canvas Micarta
  • Grind: Flat
  • Carry System: Pocket
  • Price Range: Around $120

Leave it to Benchmade to come in with the slip joint Micarta knife. This is an unusually old school design with a nail nick open and not a pocket clip in sight. You have to carry this thing all the way in your pocket. If that’s not your style, though, this becomes a very nice key ring knife, which was possibly Benchmade’s intention in the first place. Whatever the original idea was, this is probably the best knife on here from a legal standpoint thanks to the locking system and size.

 

Boker Optima

The Boker Optima has a classic design with a modern bent.

  • Overall Length: 8.125”
  • Blade Length: 3.375”
  • Steel: 440C
  • Blade Style: Clip point
  • Handle Length: 4.75”
  • Handle Material: Canvas Micarta w/ steel bolsters
  • Grind: Hollow
  • Carry System: Pocket
  • Price Range: $175 – 215

This is another old school design with a bit of a modern bent. Boker took this old style build for general outdoor tasks and gave it an interchangeable blade structure. Once you get the sheath and saw blade for it, the Optima turns into a pretty handy hunting tool. There are a lot of handle options for this knife including bone and wood, but it’s hard to beat out Micarta for the way it handles moisture and age. The Optima name covers a lot of ground within Boker, so when you’re looking to pick it up, keep an eye on the blade. They make a different modernized version under the Boker Plus branch with G10 scales. So long as you see the tree on the blade though, you’re getting the old school German Optima.

 

Boker Pipsqueak

The Boker Tree Brand Pipsqueak folding knife is one of the best small pocket knife oprions with a micarta handle.

  • Overall Length: 6.125”
  • Blade Length: 2.5”
  • Steel: CPM-S35VN
  • Blade Style: Drop point
  • Handle Length: 3.625”
  • Handle Material: Titanium w/ Canvas Micarta scales
  • Grind: Hollow
  • Carry System: Tip-up pocket clip
  • Price Range: $230 – 260

Now this is a skinner. Of all the knives on here, this is only decent Micarta-scaled knife I’ve found so far with a design that really feels like it was just made for skinning. Designed by Neil Blackwood, this gets touted as a tactical folder by a few vendors, but that seems like a stretch. It’s definitely a tough blade considering its compact build, but with the hollow grind and that little bit of recurve, this is a solid folder to take on a big game hunt.