A machete is a very sharp, long-bladed cutting tool. It's heavy enough to cut through dense brush or sugar cane without bending and can also be used as an ax. This is one of the most versatile tools available to hikers, hunters, or anyone trekking through the wilderness. Those with little knowledge of woodcraft may be surprised by how easy it is to produce a fire starting from nothing but a few sticks and a knife by using the bow drill method with only your knife and hands. 

These tools were initially developed to assist Cubans in clearing thick brush and cane fields in the sugarcane plantations. Later, they were widely adopted by various governments, companies, and individuals for military use. This is a long blade with an edge mainly used for cutting. The blade of a machete knife armament will be smooth without serrations (saw teeth) and can be curved on one or both sides of the blade. 

It has a pronounced hook at the tip, commonly used to cut underbrush or vegetation obstructing when hacking through. The edge may have indentations called "gutters" which are designed to allow blood to drip out after hacking through an animal's carcass.

Also Read: How Old is a Machete?

Popular Types of Machete

A machete is a short, thick, single-edged sword with a curved blade on one side and a straight blade on the other designed mainly for hacking. It is typically used in tropical regions as it can be easily carried and has the ability to clear brush or do other light manual labor tasks. 

The term was coined by Central Americans who encountered them during their conquest of what would become El Salvador. The United States Marine Corps also uses machete as its official nickname, which came from its use by natives in Florida when fighting against American British colonization of the area around 1832. Here are some types of these tools:

1. Czechoslovakian Light 

The Czeck-Slovakia type was produced from 1860 to 1918 and was the standard short-bladed tool used by the Austro-Hungarian Empire for clearing brush and cutting firewood. 

It is approximately eight inches (20.3 cm) long and weighs between two pounds (0.9 kg) and three pounds (1.4 kg). Its blade is about four inches (10 cm) wide at the handle, tapering towards both ends slightly for a total length of twelve inches (30 cm). The Czechoslovakian light was produced in both straight and curved models. Curved models were often called "Falken".

2. USMC Bolo Machete

The United States Marine Corps adopted their Bolo machete in 1910 and Mr. John Barrett of New Haven, Connecticut made the design. 

The blade is typically only used for one purpose: to clear vegetation for any military purposes, including defense or concealment for a nearby fighting position. Since this is the only use it has had, there are no official dimensions for this machete but roughly: 8 inches long x 3 inches wide x .5 inches thick.

3. The Kukri 

The kukri (also khukuri, khukuri / khu-kiri, kookuri, or khookuri) is a Nepalese knife with an inwardly curved edge, similar to a machete. Traditionally it has been the weapon of choice and utility tool of the Nepalese people, with its big sister being the famous Gurkha knife used by the British Army since 1816.

How to Sharpen Your Machete?

With just a little well-placed work, you can sharpen your machete in minutes! Here are the steps that you need to follow. Remember, this process will not only make your cool knives more effective but also enhance its appearance and give it that professional finish.

  • To get started make sure the blade of your knife is clean and dry (leaving any rust or other gunk behind).
  • Use light strokes on one side of the blade and hard strokes on the other to form an acute angle at about 30 degrees between them.
  • Turn your blade over and repeat this process for about 10 revolutions. This should leave a nice edge to start with.
  • Don’t forget to do the same process on the other side of the blade.
  • Now you can sharpen your blade with a steel rod. Start at the tip and pull all the way to the handle. Then, turn your blade upside down and repeat this process 8-10 times in both directions for each side of your machete.
  • Afterward, give both sides of your machete a few more short strokes to make sure that it remains sharp-looking and ready for any task!

Uses and Purposes of Machete

Machete is a Latin American term for a long, thin, single-edged sharp-edged tool with a wooden or metal handle that has been traditionally used by farmers in the form of cutting small branches and clearing vegetation. The design and use dates back to ancient times. It's often called a "living knife." This knife can be used for chopping down trees or for harvesting crops, but it is not as well suited for shaping wood since the thick blade makes it difficult to operate on fine cuts. 

These fixed blade knives should never be used as any sort of weapon; this includes the traditional way people have practiced machetes such as commanding an animal back from attacking another living being. According to the Department of Agriculture, many farmers and homeowners who purchase a machete for use in their fields or around the house may be using it improperly. 

This is not a replacement for a saw or pruning shears, and it should only be used on branches 4 inches in diameter. It can make quick work of larger branches when cutting firewood for example, but using it to cut smaller branches wastes time and energy; this is why farmers try to avoid using these as pruning tools.

Pros and Cons of Machete Knife

Pros: A long, sharp blade that can be used for cutting through thick vegetation, chopping through vines and branches, or as a weapon against human threats. The blade is easily replaceable and can make tasks much easier when hacking your way through dense underbrush. The wide-blade design helps prevent accidents where the user may cut him or herself due to sloppy technique. The weight of the machete also helps reduce fatigue when using it for extended periods.

This is the most efficient when coupled with other tools, especially axes, and saws. With the right training, it can effectively be used in self-defense situations in conjunction with a firearm, or even as a backup weapon if need be. It is lightweight and easy to carry around while out in the field. Depending on how this was made, the blade will not corrode easily. The curved design makes it ideal for slicing through vines and chopping through vegetation. 

This can also be used as a weapon against other human threats, especially on the job where security is non-existent or poor. Because it has a limited amount of impact, it is most effective to use strikes rather than direct penetration (note that some models can do both very well). This is also a weapon that may require special training if you plan to use it in self-defense situations.

Cons: It requires a lot of physical labor, which can be risky on the job or if you are outdoors. The machete is a very effective weapon, capable of killing another human quite effectively, but it is not always the best tool for the job. It can be difficult to quickly dispatch prey via a blow to the neck or head, and even more difficult when dealing with a living target. It requires extreme precision in blows to be effective, while a tomahawk axe or other tool may not require such precision to cause great damage. 

The machete blade (especially on cheaper models) will also lose its edge after cutting rough vegetation for extended periods. This is also relatively short compared to other tools and does not possess the same reach and versatility in chopping as some others do. It is also not the best at carving or cutting finer pieces of wood, though it can be used to do so when necessary. It is not the best at whittling or carving wood.