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Knife Blade Shapes - Part 2

Knife blade shapes influence the selection and the usage of knives. They are instrumental in adding strength to the knife and to ensure that the knife is particularly useful for a specific application over long periods of time.

Drop point, clip point, Tanto and spear knives are the most popular and versatile kind of knife blade shapes available and are the most used as they can cover a wide range of applications and uses. There are also many other blade shapes that are specific to particular areas of use and as they are designed keeping the specific needs of the application, they are well suited for those.

Sheepsfoot knives get their name from their shape that resembles the hoof of a sheep's foot. This has a distinctive flat, straight-line cutting edge and a round endpoint. The top of the blade curves abruptly downwards to meet the tip. The design virtually leaves no sharp point at the tip. These knives generally have little or virtually no belly. Sheepsfoot blades are mainly used for slicing applications. They are especially good in giving you a clean cut mainly on a flat cutting surface.

A Spey model of the blade was originally developed to neuter farm animals. It has a rather blunt point that avoids poking through the surface by accident. The spey is well suited for farm activities like skinning and in cases where sweeping knife strokes are required. A double-edged spey has two edges meeting at a sharp point. This is mainly used in daggers, bayonets and can cut in both directions.

The hawkbill or hook blade is of a distinct shape similar to sharply curved hook. It has a concave curved edge with the sharp cutting edge located inside the curve. It also has a tip that is sharp and can be used for cutting. This kind of design allows it to cut tough materials. This is mainly used in applications like the carpet knives or scoring blades. They are also used as slashing blades in tactical knives.

A wharncliffe blade is very similar to sheep's foot but tapers more lightly. This blade has a straight edge and a spine that tapers to the tip. This kind of blade is very good for scoring and other slicing applications.

A coping blade has a narrow blade. This has a sharp, angular point compared to the curved tapering of a sheepsfoot blade. These kinds of blades are normally used for cutting in tight spots or to cut curved patterns. These are similar to coping saw, except that they have sharp edges instead of teeth.

A dagger or a double-edged knife has a blade that is sharp on both edges and leads to a sharpened point at the dip. This point is normally aligned with the spine in the middle of the blade. The spine runs the full length of the blade and gives it good strength. This kind of blade is generally used in self-defense knives.

A Scimitar is a type of curved blade. It is similar to the hook blade, but in this blade the sharpened edge is on the outside curve of the blade or the convex side. This kind of blade also comes with a needle sharp point that allows it to be used for precise tasks in tight spaces.

A trailing point knife blade has a curve that curves slightly up. Thus this blade has a point higher than the spine and is typically the best knife for slicing applications. This design keeps the point up and out of the way of whatever is being cut.

An ulu (also called intuit woman's knife) is a knife shaped like a sharpened half circle. The blade has edge on all sides with no point. The handle is present in the middle and this kind of knife is extremely good for scrapping and chopping. This is also used in leather industries to scrape down leather and to make precise cuts to form nice circular shapes. This is one of the strongest knife shapes available.

As can be seen, knives and blades have been designed and developed over the years and have gone through many innovations. These knifes are specially designed and have been serving their needs. A good many of them are also a result of the new applications that knives are needed for and they have been designed and developed newly. It is best to research and find out the best blade shape required for the knife with the use and the user in mind and get the best of your knife purchase.

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