Knife Terminology

Knife Terms:

Blade Bevels: The portion of the blade that has been ground angled down to an edge.

Edge Bevels: The small bevels at the very edge of the blade that actual makes the knife sharp. Typically flat or convex ground, but automated sharpeners often create concave edge bevels...which many people view as inferior.

Zero Ground: When the blade bevels are ground right down to an edge and the knifes blade and edge bevels are the same bevel. Many knives are sold as “zero ground” but are actually “near zero ground” due to the fact they will have a very small edge bevel.

Flat Ground: When the blade bevels are ground flat on a platten.

Convex Ground: When the bevels are ground in an arc creating an appleseed shape, which adds more material to the blade, and often increased strength. The edge of a typical hatchet/axe is a good example of this grind.

Concave Ground: Also called hollow ground. The opposite of convex ground, where the bevels are ground to an arc but the arc curves inwards which leads to less material in the blade. This potentially creates a weaker, but easier to sharpen blade. A traditional straight razor is a good example of this grind.

Hollow Ground: The same as concave ground.

V Ground: Where both sides of the blade have the bevels symetrically ground. This term is most often applied on flat ground blades.

Chisel Ground: Where only one side of the blade has an edge bevel ground. This grind is a specialized grind that can make some cuts easier, and some harder. Many people find this grind easier to sharpen.

Distal Taper: Where the blade has a gradual taper, with the guard area being thicker and thinning towards the tip. This grind usually helps achieve a neutral balance.

Double Edged: Also often referred to as “double bladed”.Where 2 sides of the blade have been sharpened. Illegal in many districts.

False Edge: When a blade has a bevel ground in it, but has not been sharpened, often on the back of the blade.

Blood Groove: When the blade has a groove forged/milled/scraped into it. If done right this can offer decreased weight without sacrificing rigidity. The same concept as iron I-beams in construction.

Spine: The thickest part of the blade where the bevels end. On single edged knives its along the back of the blade, on double edged blades its where the bevels meet.

Drop point: Where the blades spine drops down in an arc to meet the tip.

Tanto: Japanese term for a personal knife. Typically people think of an “American tanto” that has a more angular tip but traditional tantos have a more curved tip.

American Tanto: Typically has a straight edge with a tip that angles abruptly from from the edge.

Kiridashi: A Japanese knife that is small and most oftenly angular. Traditionally used to carve/mark wood and small personal chores but can be used for a wide variety of tasks.

Karamklaw: A term we use for a type of knife we came up with with has a hole in the handle allowing one finger to slide through, enhancing the grip. Usually held in a modified sabre grip with the thumb on the spine of the blade and the index finger in a forward fingergroove with the middle finger through the hole in the handle. (other makers may be making similar knives, we are not trying to stake claim to this type of knife)