Drop point vs spear point, which one should you choose?
A drop point has a back edge that extends up to the tip in a slow curve, whereas the spear point has a symmetrical shape. Each shape defines the purpose of the blades. Compared to drop point for hunters, the spear point is not as strong, but it has a sharper tip more suitable for piercing tasks.
It’s not all about aesthetics, as both blade shapes have advantages and disadvantages. An in-depth analysis of these different blade styles shows the pros and cons of each one.
What’s a Drop Point Knife Blade?
A drop point is a blade with an unsharpened back edge running from the tang down to the tip, progressively creating a curved shape. The drop point knife dimensions are unique, with a thicker spine and that leads to a controllable and stronger point.
The drop point is a type of blade prominently featured in fixed knives, auto pocket knives, and folding knives. Great examples would be the Benchmade 162 Bushcrafter Knife (fixed), Pro-Tech Half-Breed (auto pocket knife), and the Klein 44220 Pocket Knife (folding knife).
What’s a Spear Point Knife Blade?
The spear point is a type of blade with a symmetrical point in line with the blade’s central axis. This means that the spine and lower edge of the blade rise and fall similarly, creating a sharp tip at a central point exactly.
A spear point is a common blade shape featured in pocket knives like the Kershaw Launch 4 and fixed-blade knives, such as the Fallkniven 3K. There’s also the Schrade SCHF19, which is another popular tactical knife with a double-edge shape.
To Remember: A spear point can be single or double-edged. It becomes a double-edged knife when the blade has a sharpened spine. These are illegal in many places.
Drop Point Vs. Spear Point: A Quick Summary
|Subject||Drop Point||Spear Point|
|Uses||General Utility, Hunting, Survival, Bushcraft||Self-defense, Slicing, Piercing, Fine tip work|
|Cutting Ability||Detailed Cuts||Precision Cuts|
|Ease of Sharpening||Easier||Harder|
Key Differences Between Spear Point and Drop Point
In this section, I’ve compared the drop point and spear point knife blade shapes based on their differences: uses, blade strength, cutting ability, aesthetics, and ease of sharpening.
Uses of Drop Point Knife: A drop point blade is ideal for hunting purposes. It can handle butchering tasks such as field dressing and skinning. Plus, since this blade shape doesn’t have a defined point, it’s possible to use the whole blade while skinning an animal. It’s a convenient design that makes the process faster and prevents damage to the meat.
This type of blade is also handy for outdoor activities like camping. Use it for splitting wood or cutting twigs without issues. However, not any drop point can do that. Consider buying a knife featuring a fixed blade with strong steel for these purposes.
Uses of Spear Point Blade: Spear point blades have finer tips, which make them better than drop point blades for piercing tasks. You can use knives with these blades for self-defense, hand-to-hand fighting, and tactical activities, to name a few.
Drop point blades are stronger because they have a thicker and sturdier spine that extends all the way towards the tip. Due to this design, the point remains aligned with the knife’s center axis to eliminate potential pitch momentum while using the knife for stabbing or other purposes.
Compared to drop point blades, a spear point blade has a much narrower tip. This shape is fantastic for piercing, but it also means the tip is weaker and less durable than a drop point. It’s pretty easy to chip it away or break it if you use it regularly.
Drop points can make detailed cuts. A satisfying element of knives with a drop point is that they have an easily controllable tip. This tip has a lowered profile, giving you optimal handling of the knife. Therefore, a drop point blade is perfect for making detailed cuts without damaging the meat or materials like wood.
Spear point can make scoring cuts. The spear point may not have a strong tip, but it’s durable and finer. Thus, you can use it for scoring cuts, where accurate cuts over pieces of food are necessary. Since spear point blades are also easy to control, you can use them for making uniform cuts or deeper slashes for decoration.
A drop point blade has a tactical look. It’s a type of blade that not only works well due to its versatility, but it also looks fantastic. After all, a drop point also works as a general-purpose knife that you can show off without scaring people away.
A spear point blade looks more aggressive, especially if you consider that some places ban double-edged spear point knives. Thus, it isn’t as easy to carry around a spear point knife as it would be if you had a knife with a drop point blade instead.
Drop point blades are easier to sharpen. For this process, all you will need is a sharpening stone. Blades with a longer belly—like drop point—suit the sharpening passes over the stone closely. Once you find the ideal angle between 10° and 40°, sharpening knives with this blade style is easier.
Spear point blades are trickier to sharpen. While sharpening a knife with a spear point, you have to focus on two things: maintaining the symmetry between the cutting edge and the spine and making the point as sharp as possible. This procedure requires skill, and even expert sharpeners struggle with it.
Tanto Vs Drop Point Vs Spear Point- Which One Is the Best?
Tanto point blades have one of the strongest tips for cutting hard materials like belts or clothing, but they lack a curved belly. As a result, these blades have a limited cutting performance when it comes to slicing. Additionally, tanto blades often have two edges, which are not easy to sharpen. While they look awesome, a knife with this blade style is not suitable for everyone.
A drop point blade is mostly for hunting knives, but it’s also suitable for all-purpose knives. Knives with this blade are easier to control, making them ideal for various tasks. Besides skinning animals, stronger drop point blades can split wood, cut twigs, and more. The drop point is also easy to sharpen and doesn’t look aggressive.
On the other hand, the spear point is an aggressive blade style designed for piercing and stabbing. It has a weaker and narrower tip, backed by a single or double-edged design for clean cuts and self-defense. Like tanto point or even a clip point blade, knives with a spear point are tricky to sharpen, but their piercing capacity has no match.
Shall You Get a Knife With a Spear Point Blade?
You should buy a knife with a spear point blade if you want to make precise and accurate cuts. This blade style can also slice, do fine tip work, and it also works as a self-defense tool.
Shall You Get a Knife With a Drop Point Blade?
Consider buying a knife with a drop point blade if you’re a hunter or outdoor enthusiast. The strength and versatile of these blades allow you to tackle hard materials found in the wild, like wood. Plus, it creates accurate cuts in animals to preserve the meat in excellent condition.
Spear Point or Drop Point Blade – Which One Should You Choose?
Choosing between spear point vs drop point blade types is a decision that depends on the tasks you want to do. As mentioned in this article, a drop point is stronger and more versatile. Thus, it’s the better option for hunting and outdoor activities. Use it for flat cutting, slicing, and detailed cuts.
The spear point is perfect for two things. First, it works as an excellent defensive tool due to its narrow and often double-edged design. Secondly, it’s an effective crafting tool because of its fine tip work capabilities. A spear point can slice, pierce, and make scoring cuts to perfection.