The Ontario Knife Company Kukri (model 6420) being reviewed here is not a traditional Khukuri and should not be judged as such. Rather, it’s a hybrid between the Nepalese Khukuri design and the machete, similar to a U.S. Marine Combat knife. There are a few major differences between traditional Nepalese made blades and the American made OKC model.
The OKC Kukri comes with features such as a Kraton handle, nylon sheath and black blade coating while traditional Khukuris are rarely coated and usually have water buffalo horn or wooden handles with a full leather sheath (usually wood wrapped with leather made from water buffalo hide). Keep reading our review of the Ontario Knife Company Kukri below to learn all about its strengths, weaknesses and other important details that may interest you when shopping for a tough, sharp and reliable Kukri.
Materials and Build Quality
The Ontario Kukri knife was designed and manufactured to be reliable and tough. This is evident by examining Ontario’s choice of construction materials and design of the three main parts of the knife; the blade, handle and sheath.
The blade is made of 1095 carbon steel, which is the same material used in the Aircrew Survival Egress knife. Moreover, the blade’s coating is quite resilient and even after months of rough use the coating would barely look streaked, let alone chipped or damaged. The blade retains its initial sharpness for a very long time and the spine receives hardly any wear or damage, even when being used for battoning (using the knife as a wood splitting blade by hitting the blade spine with a blunt object).
The handle is of durable Kraton construction with contoured grooves milled out, which greatly improves traction and grip. It features a large lanyard hole and a retention wrist strap is included for added safety and utility. Front and rear guards help with safety as they reduce the chances of the knife either sliding out of your hand while in motion or prevent your hand from sliding forward onto the blade when thrusting or piercing materials.
The sheath itself is extremely sturdy and should prove durable enough for daily use. However, many users have reported a failure of the belt loop. While the innovative snap design is quite impressive (it allows for easy one-handed draw), the reinforcement rivets often tear through the tough nylon belt strap within the space of a few weeks. This is a rather disappointing weakness for a tool that is otherwise tough and built strong.
Size – Dimensions and Weight
When measured from the base, near the front guard to its tip, the Ontario kukri’s blade has a length of 11.5 inches and it is 0.25 inches thick. The entire blade is ground full flat with a contoured back and 3 inches of an extremely strong tip. The razor sharp factory edge retains its sharpness for a long time.
- Overall knife length: 17″
- Blade length: 11.5″
- Blade thickness: 0.25″
- Blade width: 0.1875″
The Ontario OKC Kukri knife is on the heavier side with much of that weight shifted toward the tip of the knife, which I personally like as it aids in chopping. It weighs in at 1.575 pounds with the sheath while the knife alone weighs 1.33 pounds.
The Ontario OKC Kukri knife offers excellent balance and the handle feels very natural in the hand. The handle offers ample grip for tough chopping and cutting tasks. The Kraton handle’s execution is excellent and the real estate it provides is more than adequate. It feels quite comfortable even after extended periods of hard use. To put this into perspective, the handles of some kukri knives will give you a sore pinky finger after just a small amount of heavy or rough chopping. With this kukri you shouldn’t experience any early fatigue or discomfort.
Final Conclusion On the OKC 6420 Kukri
The Ontario Knife Company’s reputation is built on a heritage of quality components, tough materials, utilitarian design and uncompromising craftsmanship. The Ontario OKC kukri knife is the embodiment of these ideals, with its distinctive design and selection of high quality components and materials. The blade was also designed with the user in mind, both in terms of price and usability with the Kraton handle designed with finger grooves, weight forward powder coated blade and a lanyard for a secure grip. The OKC Kukri is a very well made and effective all-purpose knife that can be used to clear brush, battoning, self defense and a host of other activities.
- Great value kukri; good luck finding anything better for $50.
- It is extremely durable; black blade coating doesn’t wear off easily.
- Great handle texture and ergonomics for superior comfort during heaving chopping.
- Full flat grind on the blade can be honed to an extremely sharp edge, making it a great slicer as well.
- Black powder coating to prevent rusting of the carbon steel (non-stainless).
- Excellent balance and weight forward design makes for a comfortable and efficient chopping performance.
- The sheath is really the only gripe of note with the Ontario kukri. Specifically the belt strap, which may have a tendency to fail under rough use. Otherwise it is adequate and perfectly functional as a carry option, though a custom leather or kydex solution would be a wise upgrade.