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Imagine yourself swimming along enjoying your dive, when suddenly you encounter a sea turtle trapped in a fishing net. Would you know what to do, and have the right equipment to help? A fast-thinking diver carrying a knife could respond to this underwater emergency, freeing the turtle before moving on to enjoy the rest of their dive. The best dive knife will be sharp and durable enough to cut through major entanglement hazards like net and rope. And, you should feel comfortable carrying it in the water.

If you’re new to diving, it might seem strange to carry a knife underwater. But, experienced divers know that your dive knife can serve as a life-saving piece of safety equipment in the case of an underwater entanglement. Many knives also feature multiple tools and other features for fine-tuning your gear at depth. Keep reading to learn about the best models on the market and find your perfect fit.

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Quick Answer - Best Dive Knives

  1. Blue Reef Folding Titanium
  2. Eezycut Trilobite
  3. Aqua Lung Wenoka
  4. Cressi Alligator
  5. Underwater Kinetics Remora
  6. Aqua Lung Big Squeeze
  7. XS Scuba Fog Cutter
  8. Scubapro X-Cut
  9. Atomic Ti6

 

Comparison Table - The Best Dive Knives

PictureNameBlade TypeSizeBlade LengthPriceRating
Blue Reef Folding TitaniumDrop Point TipMedium3.5 inches$4.8
Tusa MiniDrop Point TipSmall2.8 inches$4.4
Eezycut TrilobiteLine CutterSmall2.0 Inches$5.0
Aqua Lung WenokaBlunt TipMedium4.5 Inches$$4.5
Cressi AlligatorBlunt Tip, Drop Point TipMedium3.2 Inches$$4.2
Underwater Kinetics RemoraBlunt TipMedium3.0 Inches$$4.5
Aqua Lung Big SqueezeBlunt Tip, Drop Point Tip, SheepsfootMedium4.3 Inches$$5.0
XS Scuba Fog CutterBlunt Tip, Drop Point TipMedium6.0 Inches$$$4.2
Scubapro X-CutDrop Point TipSmall2.5 Inches$$$4.9
Atomic Ti6Blunt Tip, Drop Point TipMedium4.0 Inches$$$4.8
PictureNameBlade TypeSizeBlade LengthPriceRating

 

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Reviews - The Best Knives for Diving

Blue Reef Folding Titanium

Specs
  • Blade Material: Titanium
  • Handle Material: Plastic
  • Mounting: Lanyard
  • Size: Medium
  • Blade Type: Drop Point Tip
  • Blade Length: 3.5 inches
Features
  • Folding Sheath for Safety
  • Partial Serrated Edge
  • Line Cutter
  • Spring-Loaded Safety Lock

BEST FOR: BUDGET

The Blue Reef Folding Titanium dive knife is a basic budget-priced model, designed for use in a variety of dive environments. It’s small and compact enough to stow in your BCD pocket, and easy to attach to a D-ring or loop via a sliding lock lanyard. The blade features a sharp drop point tip, partially serrated edge, and a line cutter. Multiple cutting surfaces allow this knife to perform a variety of tasks like stabbing, sawing, and slicing. Plus, a folding sheath and spring-loaded safety lock make this one of the safest options underwater, even for inexperienced and newly certified divers.

Tusa Mini

Specs
  • Blade Material: 304 Grade Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Plastic
  • Mounting: BCD Screwdown, Hose Clip
  • Size: Small
  • Blade Type: Drop Point Tip
  • Blade Length: 2.8 inches
Features
  • Partial Serrated Edge
  • Squeeze Activated Safety Lock
  • Available in Multiple Colors
  • Includes Adapter for Hose Mounting

BEST FOR: DIVE TRAVEL

No matter where in the world you’re taking the plunge, you’ll want to carry a knife during your dives. But, some bulky blades can be awkward to travel with. The TUSA Mini jams all the strength and durability of a full-scale dive knife into a travel-sized package, making it easy to pack and store. Plus, this model is easy to carry underwater, no matter how compact your equipment. This pint-sized option can tuck into your BCD pocket, screw onto its exterior, or clip on to a hose. So, you’ll have no trouble mounting it, even on a sparse travel setup. Keep in mind that a knife this small is not meant to take on major cutting projects.

Eezycut Trilobite

Specs
  • Blade Material: 440A Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Plastic, Steel
  • Mounting: Webbing
  • Size: Small
  • Blade Type: Line Cutter
  • Blade Length: 2.0 Inches
Features
  • Nylon Storage Pouch
  • Velcro Attachment Point for Easy Access
  • User Replaceable Razor Blade
  • Available in Multiple Colors

BEST FOR: LINE CUTTER

Safety conscious divers often carry more than one cutting tool underwater for redundancy, and a line cutter is one of the most popular options for a backup. The Eezycut Trilobite is a perfect pick thanks to its compact size, easy Velcro attachment point, and super-sharp line cutting blade. This knife was designed to slice through fishing line and SCUBA webbing, so it’s a top pick for technical, sidemount, and shipwreck divers. Because it features a backward-facing blade, the Trilobite can’t cut anything thicker than 0.47 inches. While you’ll never risk cutting yourself with this model, it won’t work as a primary knife in challenging environments like kelp.

Aqua Lung Wenoka

Specs
  • Blade Material: 304 Series Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Plastic
  • Mounting: Belt Clip, Leg Strap, BCD Screwdown
  • Size: Medium
  • Blade Type: Blunt Tip
  • Blade Length: 4.5 Inches
Features
  • Clips to Your Weight Belt or Calf for Easy Access
  • Partial Serrated Edge
  • Line Cutter
  • Squeeze Activated Safety Lock

BEST FOR: OVERALL VALUE

The Aqua Lung Wenoka is a traditional cutting tool that can perform a variety of tasks in nearly every diving environment. This knife comes with plenty of accessories to mount on your BCD’s exterior, a weight belt, or your lower leg. And, a squeeze activated safety lock will keep its blade stowed in its sheath until the moment that you need it. The Wenoka’s blade features multiple surfaces, including a serrated back edge, line cutter, and blunt tip designed for prying and scraping. Plus, it’s long enough to tackle major underwater cutting projects like net and rope. This makes it a top pick for cold water climates like kelp forests, and a favorite among spearfishers.

Cressi Alligator

Specs
  • Blade Material: 420 Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Plastic, Steel
  • Mounting: Hose Clip
  • Size: Medium
  • Blade Type: Blunt Tip, Drop Point Tip
  • Blade Length: 3.2 Inches
Features
  • Multiple Tool Function
  • Latching Scissor Safety
  • Squeeze Activated Safety Lock
  • Includes Adapter for Hose Mounting

BEST FOR: BEGINNERS

If you’re a newly certified diver, you might not feel comfortable carrying a knife in the water yet. The Cressi Alligator is a multi-purpose tool that can be used in almost any entanglement situation underwater, and it feels more like a pair of scissors than a knife. This model features multiple cutting surfaces, scissors, and both blunt and sharp tips. Its squeeze activated sheath and latching scissor safety are easy to use and will prevent accidental cuts underwater. Plus, it will serve as an outstanding backup tool later, if you want to carry a larger single blade on your dives.

Underwater Kinetics Remora

Specs
  • Blade Material: Titanium
  • Handle Material: Lightweight Injection Molded Plastic
  • Mounting: Hose Clip, BCD Strap
  • Size: Medium
  • Blade Type: Blunt Tip
  • Blade Length: 3.0 Inches
Features
  • Partial Serrated Edge
  • No-Maintenance-Design
  • Squeeze Activated Safety Lock
  • Includes Adapter for Hose Mounting

BEST FOR: BACKUP

The Underwater Kinetics Remora lives up to its name, easily sticking to any piece of dive equipment. This is one of the easiest to store dive knives on the market, and it’s so lightweight you might forget you’re wearing it. The Remora can tuck into a BCD pocket, mount to a hose, and slide over any piece of strap or webbing. And, its maintenance-free design, featuring a rust-resistant titanium blade, doesn’t need to be washed after diving. Simply leave your knife in place and rinse your equipment as usual. This model is best for backup use, as it doesn’t include a sharp tip, line cutter, or other tools. 

Aqua Lung Big Squeeze

Specs
  • Blade Material: 304 Series Stainless Steel, Beta Alloy Titanium
  • Handle Material: Nylon, Fiberglass
  • Mounting: Belt Clip, Lanyard
  • Size: Medium
  • Blade Type: Blunt Tip, Drop Point Tip, Sheepsfoot
  • Blade Length: 4.3 Inches
Features
  • Partial Serrated Edge
  • Line Cutter
  • Multiple Blade Tips to Choose From
  • Steel and Titanium Blade Options
  • Folding Sheath for Safety
  • Spring-Loaded Safety Lock

BEST FOR: DAILY USE

If you work in the water, you’ll want a dive knife durable enough for everyday use. The Aqua Lung Big Squeeze is one of the hardest wearing models on the market, perfect for divers who are tough on their equipment. This knife features a folding sheath and spring loaded safety, so it’ll never accidentally come open underwater. Its medium-sized blade is available in both titanium and steel, and it comes with a variety of tips, making it one of the most versatile options out there. Plus, it’s simple to stow on your leg, clipped to a weight belt, or tied to your wrist with a lanyard.

XS Scuba Fog Cutter

Specs
  • Blade Material: Black Oxide Finished 420 Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Plastic, Rubber
  • Mounting: Leg Strap
  • Size: Medium
  • Blade Type: Blunt Tip, Drop Point Tip
  • Blade Length: 6.0 Inches
Features
  • Folding Scissor
  • Chromate Treated Blade for Rust Prevention
  • Multiple Tool Function
  • Latching Scissor Safety
  • Squeeze Activated Safety Lock
  • Lanyard Loop

BEST FOR: MULTI-TOOL

Are you diving in challenging conditions or beyond the recreational diving limits? If so, you’ll want to carry a rugged and durable multi-purpose tool that’s easy to use while wearing thick gloves. The XS Scuba Fog Cutter is a workhorse of a dive knife, featuring an oversized rust-resistant blade, scissor, line cutter, and more than one serrated edge. Its latching safety holds the scissor closed underwater, and a squeeze releasing sheath keeps the entire blade concealed until you are ready to use it. Because of this knife’s size, you’ll want to wear it exposed on your lower leg using its provided depth compensating rubber straps.

Scubapro X-Cut

Specs
  • Blade Material: Titanium
  • Handle Material: Titanium
  • Mounting: Webbing
  • Size: Small
  • Blade Type: Drop Point Tip
  • Blade Length: 2.5 Inches
Features
  • Solid Titanium Construction
  • Comfort Grip Ergonomic Handle
  • Nylon Storage Pouch
  • Velcro Attachment Point for Easy Access
  • Lanyard Loop

BEST FOR: ADVANCED APPLICATIONS  

If you’re diving without a traditional BCD, you might struggle to carry a dive knife intended for recreational use. The ScubaPro X-Cut was designed with technical diving gear in mind. This lightweight, solid titanium model attaches easily to any strap or belt, using a small piece of nylon webbing and a Velcro sheath. This knife doesn’t have a plastic handle, so it’s easy to grasp and operate, even while wearing the thickest of gloves or mitts. It comes equipped with multiple serrated surfaces, a line cutter, and a lanyard loop for attachment at the wrist. Plus, it is 100% corrosion resistant, so you’ll never need to worry about cleaning it after your dives.

Atomic Ti6

Specs
  • Blade Material: Titanium
  • Handle Material: Injection Molded Plastic
  • Mounting: Leg Strap
  • Size: Medium
  • Blade Type: Blunt Tip, Drop Point Tip
  • Blade Length: 4.0 Inches
Features
  • Lightweight Injection Molded Plastic Handle
  • Curved Blade
  • Squeeze Activated Safety Lock
  • Removable Handle for Easy Cleaning
  • Lanyard Loop

BEST FOR: TOP OF THE LINE  

A high-quality dive knife is an investment. And, while the Atomic Ti6 is certainly not a budget option, we promise it’s worth every penny. Its titanium blade and removable handle will keep this vital piece of equipment rust and corrosion free for years to come. And, unlike most models, it’s sold with your choice of a blunt or sharp tip. Of course, the Ti6 comes standard with all the features you’d expect, like a line cutter and serrated blade, a squeeze activated safety and comfort fit leg straps. This model also features a lanyard loop for wrist storage, perfect for divers using thick gloves or mitts.

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THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN BUYING A DIVE KNIFE

 

DIVE ENVIRONMENT

Where you’re diving should determine what type of knife you carry. If you’re a warm water recreational diver, a small blade or even a line cutter will do. But, if you’re exploring shipwrecks, kelp forests, or any environment where you expect to find entanglement hazards, you should dive with a larger blade. Technical and sidemount divers often prefer a multitool over a traditional dive knife, and typically dive with more than one cutting tool for added safety. 

 

BLADE TYPE

Dive knives are available with a variety of blade types. The most traditional design, known as the drop point tip, is sharpened into a point. This blade type works well for stabbing and slicing. A blunt tip is best for prying and scraping. If you’re not used to carrying a knife underwater, this safety-minded option might be best, as it reduces the risk of stabbing yourself while using it. A sheepsfoot tip includes a straight edged front blade with a dull back spine. This type of knife is popular among safety and technical divers, as it works well for cutting webbing and straps without the risk of injury. 

Line cutting tools feature a much smaller blade, used only for cutting through thin materials like fishing lines, nets, and SCUBA webbing. 

 

SIZE

When it comes to dive knives, size matters. Before deciding on what size is best for you, consider a few key points. Where are you planning to carry your dive knife? A blade over four inches may not fit in your BCD’s pocket or mount to its exterior. What will you be cutting? While a six inch blade might sound appealing, do you need a cutting tool that long? A knife that is too small won’t cut through serious entanglement hazards underwater. But, a blade that is too big will be difficult to dive and travel with and may be dangerous to use at depth. 

If you’re new to diving, choose a knife with a smaller blade. You can always upgrade later, and many experienced divers carry two cutting tools for redundancy. 

 

MATERIALS 

Most dive knives use stainless steel for their blades. The higher the steel’s number rating, the better; as this number indicates how durable the metal is and how resistant your knife will be to rust and corrosion. Some blades feature protective coatings to prevent damage and stay looking newer for longer. Top-quality knives use strong rust-resistant materials like titanium for their blades. While these options are often more expensive than steel alternatives, they are almost sure to outlast steel models. 

 

MOUNTING OPTIONS 

No matter where you prefer to mount your dive knife, you should be able to reach it with either hand. In the case of severe underwater entanglement, you’ll need to act quickly, and searching your gear for a cutting tool can waste valuable time.

Most knives feature at least one attachment point for stowing. For smaller knives, a lanyard loop or piece of webbing that attaches to your BCD’s D-rings is best. Medium-sized knives often use weight belt clips and BCD screw-down points (grommeted metal ports in your knife’s sheath that screw into the buoyancy compensator). Large dive knives are typically worn strapped to the lower leg using rubberized adjustable bands. Some models also include an adapter that allows you to mount the knife’s sheath directly to any diving hose. 

 

 

FEATURES EXPLAINED

 

FOLDING SHEATH

Some dive knives use a folding sheath, much like a pocket knife, to keep their blade secure. This style is compact and travel-friendly, but may be difficult for divers to open underwater, especially while wearing thick gloves. This style is best for warm water divers exploring in areas with no known hazards, or as a backup to stow in your BCD pocket. 

 

SERRATED EDGE

Nearly all dive knives have one or more serrated surface, used for sawing and hacking underwater. This feature is crucial for cutting through thick materials like rope.

 

LINE CUTTER 

A line cutter is a backward-facing blade intended to cut through fishing line, net, and thin rope. Using a small section of your knife for these delicate cuts is safer and more comfortable than utilizing the full length of your blade. 

 

MULTIPLE TOOL FUNCTION  

If you’re a technical, sidemount, or rebreather diver, you may need a multi-tool for fine-tuning your equipment at depth. Most dive knives featuring multiple tools include scissors and a screwdriver in addition to standard elements like a line cutter and serrated edge. 

 

USER REPLACEABLE BLADE

Some dive knives, typically line cutters, feature an interchangeable razor blade that screws into place. This makes it easy to swap your current blade out for a sharper cutting edge in between dives. 

 

SAFETY

One of your knife’s most essential features is the safety. This design element holds the blade safely within its sheath until the exact moment when you’re ready to use it. 

Squeeze activated safety locks are used by grasping your knife’s handle and squeezing firmly. This action compresses the handle’s side springs and allows the blade to slide free from its sheath. 

Spring loaded safety locks are found in folding knives. This type of safety works just like a standard pocket knife, keeping your blade concealed until you flip it open. To close this type of knife, you’ll have to put pressure on the blade from behind. Some divers find this less comfortable than other safety types. 

Latching safety locks use a folding piece of metal to keep the knife closed. This type of safety is most common in scissors, shears, and multi-tools. 

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3 Responses

  1. Eric Burns

    Personally, I think I would go with the Spyderco again, the Spyderco Atlantic. I already have one folding knife from Spyderco, the Paramilitary 2, and it is really good.

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