Are you an avid outdoorsman or woman looking for the best machete for your next adventure or task? You’re in the right place. Machetes are the perfect tools for campers, survivalists, and farmers alike; however, as with all tools, quality matters. & out these top three machetes available this year.

The Best Machete for this year

Ontario Knife Co 1-18” Military Machete

1095 Carbon Steel

Built for the military, highly durable, affordable option, quality craftsmanship from a vetted cutlery brand

Condor Tool & Knife – Golok Machete

1075 High Carbon Steel with Black Powder Epoxy Finish

Full tang, includes a convenient leather sheath with a belt loop, features a beautiful walnut handle, sharp right out of the box

Tramontina Bolo Machete

1070 Carbon Steel

Inexpensive, high-quality materials, solid performance, incredible value for money

Things to Look for in a Machete

Don’t get machetes confused with hatchets or axes. They are each different and are designed for different types of work tasks. Machetes are large knives with broad blades that can be used for combat purposes or to cut through vegetation. Check out this article to learn the differences between an ax and a hatchet.

Machetes are incredible tools used for a variety of purposes. Here are just a few things they are commonly used for:

  • Agriculture (harvesting rice, corn, sugar cane, and other crops)
  • Clearing brush
  • Camping (chopping wood for a fire, clearing a campsite, cutting shelter materials)
  • Self-defense (military combat, fending off dangerous animals)
  • Food preparation (splitting hard-to-open nuts and fruits)
  • Creating nature paths
Photo of a man cracking a coconut with a machete.

There are several things you should consider before buying a machete of your own. First, be sure to ask yourself what you’ll be using it for. Are you wanting to chop branches, clear away shrubs and plants, or are you looking for a combat weapon?

Once you determine how you’re going to use it, you’ll want to examine the following factors when you’re ready to buy your machete:

Blade Length
Your blade length depends on the type of work you’re going to do. Generally speaking, shorter blades are more practical if you’re doing easier, lighter tasks, while longer blades will offer more heavy-duty cutting power.
Blade Material
Most blades come in carbon steel, stainless steel, or high carbon steel.  Carbon steel blades are usually more robust, more inexpensive, and are better at keeping their sharpness. Stainless steel blades are rust-resistant, dull quickly, and are a lot more costly. High carbon steel blades are the most expensive of the blade materials, offering high durability and requiring less maintenance.
Tang is the bottom half of a blade that goes down to the handle. If you’re looking for more heavy-duty cutting, you’ll want a machete with full tang. This means that the tang is as long as the entire handle, allowing you more leverage, balance, and of course, power.
Type of Handle
Believe it or not, a machete’s handle material plays a significant role in its use. The weight of this material and your grip has a lot to do with how effective your machete can be in completing the task at hand. The most widely used handle materials include:


  • Leather – offers a firm grip at a more expensive price
  • Molded Plastic – inexpensive with easy maintenance, but can become slippery or break or discolor over time
  • Rubber – an easily worn option that offers a comfortable grip
  • Micarta – the most durable choice with a higher price tag
  • Wooden – lightweight with a solid grip yet more costly and more prone to cracking
Whatever machete you choose needs to be incredibly durable. After all, it’ll be cutting through objects. If it’s not tough enough to slice nicely without breaking, then it’s probably not going to last you very long. Don’t settle for a flimsy model from an unknown. Make sure to & the reviews and ensure that your choice can stand the test of time.

Safety Tips for Using Machetes

Obviously, there are always safety concerns when it comes to swinging a sharp object around. However, with a bit of know-how and practice, you can rest assured that you’ll enjoy safe slicing.

Whether you’re a machete swinging pro or a beginner, here are a few of the most common safety tips for using your machete:

Examine Your Area
Ensure that the area where you’ll be working is free of any safety hazards for you and anyone in the vicinity. Make sure the space is clear of animals and children or that they remain at a safe distance.
Photo of a machete on a wooden bench.

Hold It Properly You must hold your machete with a solid, comfortable grip to effectively use it and prevent blisters. Improper holding technique could lead to the machete slipping out of your hand (overly loose grip) or exhausting your hand (overly tight grip). Take a look at this helpful video to learn how to hold your machete properly.

Swing Correctly
Once you know how to hold your machete, now you’re ready to start swinging. It’s essential to maintain your momentum with each swing by swinging with your whole arm, leading with your elbow, and flicking your wrist at the moment of contact.
Carry It Safely
Always store your machete in its protective sheath when you are transporting it to a different worksite or carrying it around with you. This will prevent injury to yourself and others.

Ontario Knife Co 1-18″ Military Machete (Best Overall)

This inexpensive military machete is no joke. It features a plain edge, 18” blade made of 1095 carbon steel and hardened to 50-55 HRC, including an overall length of 24”. With over 125 years of successful knife manufacturing, the Ontario Knife Co. has extensive experience creating beautifully crafted, durable, heavy-duty tools for the U.S. military.

This tool takes the cake for the best combat machete due to its phenomenal cutting power and sturdiness. It’s undoubtedly one of the best survival machetes, as it holds up in harsh environments and repetitive use. If you’re looking for a professional-grade military machete, this one’s for you.

This well-built cutting device will slice through branches, shrubbery, and even small trees with ease. Whether you’re an active army sergeant or a homeowner needing to cut down free-hanging limbs in your backyard, you can benefit from using it.

If that’s not enough for you, the 1,000+ positive ratings on Amazon prove that you’re getting extreme value for your money. And that’s why I’m naming it best machete of the year.


  • Incredible durability, built for the U.S. Military
  • Manufactured by a reputable brand with over 125 years of experience
  • High-quality steel blade
  • Lightweight for easy swinging


  • The plastic handle can be difficult to grip
  • Blade finish scratches easily
  • Dull out of the package
  • Some customers noticed rusting on the blade

Condor Tool & Knife – Golok Machete

Although it’s probably on the higher end of your budget, this imported Condor Golok Machete hails from El Salvador and offers high-quality cutting power with a manufacturer warranty. Many customers have been thrilled to say that it’s sharp right out of the box.

Photo of the Condor Golok Machete with sheat.

The Condor Golok Machete features a 14-inch, 1075 high carbon steel blade with a black powder epoxy finish and an overall length of 19”. I’ve chosen this product as the best machete for chopping wood due to its strong grip and weighted end.

Some say looks don’t matter, but I beg to differ. This machete will make you stop and stare with its gorgeous hardwood handle made of pure walnut. You also get a sweet-looking authentic 100% leather sheath to store your new toy, which includes a belt loop so you can cut on the go.

Photo of the Condor Golok Machete without sheat.


  • It offers a beautiful and sturdy walnut hardwood handle.
  • This product comes with an authentic 100% leather sheath for safe transportation to and from different worksites.
  • Customers enjoy a super sharp blade right out of the box, saving time and effort on pre-work sharpening.
  • This machete boasts full tang, giving it extreme cutting power and precision.


  • Some customers may find this tool too expensive for their budgets.
  • It may be too heavy of a tool for customers who either have less arm strength or are smaller individuals.
  • Some customers found the product to have a poorly balanced handle design and inadequate thickness level.
  • The blade can be easily dentable, according to some customers.

Tramontina Bolo Machete

This Brazilian machete is small but mighty, weighing in at 7 ounces and packing some serious slicing power. It’s the cheapest option on our list, making it an excellent choice for nature enthusiasts, farmers, and homeowners with a smaller budget.

This machete is 19.5 inches in length and features a 14.5-inch blade. It can be used for a variety of purposes, from clearing nature trails and cutting through free-hanging limbs to harvesting crops in the field and even opening coconuts on the beach (if you’re into that).

With its heavy-duty, long, elongated blade, it makes our list of favorites as the best machete for clearing brush. This Bolo-style machete offers extra momentum when cutting through shrubbery and foliage while also being lightweight. It ranks #6 in Amazon’s Gardening Machetes category.


  • This is an incredibly affordable option for customers with smaller budgets.
  • It offers an excellent swing balance for effective cutting and slicing with better results and minimal effort.
  • It includes a polyurethane coating on the blade to help prevent rust and reduce everyday wear and tear.
  • This is a highly durable product that can withstand heavy-duty chopping tasks.
  • It’s a multi-purpose tool that can be used to clear brush, chop wood, and much more.


  • The product is delivered with a dull blade and requires sharpening by the customer.
  • The wooden handle may be too small for people with larger hands and may require reshaping as necessary.
  • This product does not include a sheath, making customers buy it separately.
  • Some customers think the blade is too thin and flimsy for practical use and experienced a blunted blade.


Now that you’ve seen three of the most effective machetes, it’s time to announce the winner. I’ve selected the Ontario Knife Co. Military Machete as the best overall machete for its remarkable durability, high-quality design and material, and its insanely affordable price tag.

Most likely, if something’s built for military use, it harnesses some serious power, is capable of taking a serious beating without breaking down, and is a reliable tool. Compared to the Tramontina and the Condor, this reigned supreme.

You really can’t go wrong with any of these products, as they all rank among the top machetes available. However, if you’re looking for the best value for your money, you’d be remiss not to snag the Ontario Military Machete.

4 thoughts on “What to look for in the best machete”

  1. Personally, I like to use the Ontario Knife and have found they can tackle most tasks domestically speaking and for keeping the wife at-bay! hahaha…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll to Top