TOPS Wild Pig Hunter Knife Review – The BEST Hog Hunting Knife
Blade
Handle
Sheath
Design
Price
What We Liked
  • Incredibly Sharp
  • Overall Quality
  • Made in the USA
What Can Be Improved
  • Price
  • Some Would Prefer a Kydex Sheath
4.5Overall Score

TOPS Wild Pig Hunter Knife Review – The BEST Hog Hunting Knife in 2017

So you’re hunting wild boar? In this review, I’m going to reveal the best wild pig hunting knife with a detailed review of TOPS Wild Pig Hunter Knife, the perfect companion for your hog hunts. If you’re looking for something rugged, tough and multi-functional that can be used for taking down feral hogs, or in tactical situations, then read on for the full review.
TOPs Wild Pig Hunter Review

Specifications:

  • Blade Length: 7.5 Inches
  • Overall length: 13 Inches
  • Blade Thickness: .25 Inches
  • Knife Weight: 14.2 Ounces
  • Blade Steel: 1095 High Carbon Steel
  • Sheath: Brown Leather

Setting the Scene

There’s no shortage of adventurous and adrenaline-inducing activities and sports that you can do … especially when it comes to hunting. However, wild hog hunting is indisputably one of the most exhilarating and adrenaline-rich experiences that you can have while hunting because of the closeness to the action. If you haven’t done it before, you can imagine the situation: you have your dogs’ running around creating a distraction to the pigs, you are running at an angry, confused wild hog, all while making sure you avoid the hog’s tusks, and then protruding your large blade in to the wild boar. It becomes a chaotic scene and requires a knife that without any if’s and/or but’s gets the job done.

Not many other activities will offer this type of rush.

What is Wild Boar Hunting?

Wild hog hunting is becoming an increasingly popular sport and hunt. In some places it is even required as wild boars can cause destruction because of their extremely sharp tusks to farmland and native species. In some cases, feral hogs can weigh up to 300 – 400 pounds! It is an exciting hunt, but you need to come prepared with a proper hog hunting knife. Wild boar are aggressive, and will injure a hunter or dogs if you’re not alert and make the first move.

What Kind of Wild Boar Knife Do You Need

For hunting wild hogs, you need a knife that is designed for extremely hard and fierce use. The pig knife should be designed to pierce deep with a strong puncture point. Think about this. You have a 300 to 400 pound angry hog with 4 tusks charging at you. It is imperative to have a wild pig knife that can handle that type of tricky and dire situation. You can imagine the sharpness and toughness of a pig knife that is required to pierce through the hog and defuse the situation.

A quality pig sticker or pig hunting knife will have a super sharp tip, and thickness that can easily pierce the hide of a hog. First and foremost it will serve its role as a pig sticker knife, while a quality knife able to handle multiple roles.

Overview of TOPS Wild Pig Hunter Knife

For hunting wild boar, this is one bad ass knife, with an impressive blade. In a quick overview, it looks and feels like a top of the line knife, its effective for serious users, and will excel as a wild pig hunter knife. It has a piercing tip to penetrate through feral hide, has beautiful fixtures, a nice long, razor sharp and thick blade that can handle more than just pigs. Also notable for a knife of this size, it was designed with phenomenal balance and comfort (ergonomics).

Features:

  • 5 Inch Blade Designed for deep piercing penetration
  • Strong puncture point
  • 1095 High Carbon Steel
  • Beautiful Black River Wash finish (heat treat line along the blade edge)
  • Attractive Green canvas Micarta for the handle
  • Rocky Mountain Tread for strong grip in all weather elements
  • A high-quality “Made in the USA” steerhide leather sheath
  • Fixed Blade Knife

While it is designed as a hog hunting knife, it is weapon-type, and some fans of this knife even use it as an EDC fixed blade and tactical / combat knife because of its sheer strength and penetration power. It is more than just a boar killing knife. It’s a solid knife, and feels well-constructed.

If you have not used a TOPS knife previously, you’ll most likely be extremely impressed by the look and feel. By “well-constructed”, more than anything, I mean that it has super high end workmanship and finish on the knife. It adds value because it not only performs at an incredibly high level, but it looks and feels good while doing so. It will perform exceptionally well on wild pig hunting, but as mentioned, it slashes and handles general harder-use tasks well. Heck, some even think that it could hold up to a grizzly – albeit I have not tried that – but it is that solid.

Who is TOPs?

I’ve noticed a trend. Those who use TOPS Knives become raving fans. And now it makes sense. They’re truly focused on building a reputation as a high quality, USA-Made manufacturer. If you have read my other reviews, it is no shock that I am a big fan of Benchmade and Buck Knives, both of which are also domestic USA-Made knife companies. I can respect a quality knife regardless of which country it comes from, but a USA-Made knife generally feels different, and is always a great feel-good when it is. A sort of sentiment if you will.

TOPS typically is not cheap, but it is because they put a lot of effort, thought and care into the workmanship and design of their knives. In our buyer’s guide for how to choose the best skinning knife, TOPS had one of the premium skinning knives that we recommended.

This model is not an anomaly considering that they have been producing many high-quality models for years now. TOPS was founded in 1998. They’re relatively a new company when you compare them against a company with rich history such as Buck. However, they’re making a quick name for themselves, particularly because they were founded themselves by veterans and are strong supporters for veteran charities. TOPS might be a newer company, but they are doing all of the right things, and most importantly, consistently producing top of the line knives.

How is the Blade Quality?

The TOPS Knife Wild Pig Hunter comes incredibly sharp out of the box with a 7.5 inch blade. A 7.5 inch blade … which is what I consider to be a large-fixed blade.

Arguably the most important aspect for a pig sticker is going to be its blade. And, after looking at many hog hunting knives, this TOPS knife sticks out because of its beautiful blade. It passes any kind of shaving test that you throw at it – including the arm-hair test or paper test (slices right through paper). It takes and maintains a very sharp edge, almost as sharp as a razor or scalpel.

As I’ve discussed above, a dull pig hunting knife is not only useless, but also dangerous. You need a razor sharp blade that can pierce through hide. This is not only a beautiful blade, but is practical and works. It is thick all the way through the tip with a very strong blade. I would almost liken it to a needle as it pierces and punctures that sharply.

The overall geometry of the blade is very good. I’m personally someone that prefers alternative hand placements when I am out hunting and skinning. The TOPS Wild Pig Hunter has jimping, which I like, and equally has a very good finger guard that could allow it to be used as a spear should you so choose. You can also see the heat treat line all the way down the blade, which isn’t a conventional look, but a very nice one.

It feels to have good balance on the blade. And, ultimately, will inflict damage, as a pig sticker or as a tactical knife, it will do the job slicing and stabbing. When pig hunting, it requires force and pressure to push a knife through a pig’s vitals. But, this is a very solid, thick, sharp, blade that will penetrate through a hog’s bristles … tear through … and when pig hunting, that is exactly what you need. TOPS has done a great job on their design of the blade.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

 

Any Issues With The Handle?

The TOPS Wild Pig Hunter has an interesting handle design and feel. It is designed with Green Canvas Micarta Handle Scales and Rocky Mountain Tread and has full tang through the entire knife.

It’s important to me that a knife is comfortable in my hand, and doesn’t get hot spots after prolonged use. More than for any other type of sport or hunt, comfort and grip is critical for boar hunting. Not only that, but it should be comfortable resting on your side while hunting for pig. In a swampy area, you will encounter muddy situations. The TOPS Wild Pig Hunter is not a knife you will have to worry about slipping out because it gets muddy or bloody. And afterwards, it is easy to clean.

It is a nice looking green canvas, and even though it looks rook, the texture does offer a quality grip without casing discomfort. It doesn’t feel like it will slip while using and has a strong handle that you can latch on to.

It’s also worth noting that it offers good maneuverability. Everyone has different cutting and slicing styles, and the handle offers good flexibility to serve your style.

Sheath

The TOPS Knife Wild Pig Hunter comes with a vegetable tan, tough steerhide, made-in-the-USA leather sheath. It is a nice brown leather sheath that reflects the quality of the knife, as opposed to a cheap or gimmicky nylon sheath with plastic inserts. The sheath gives off important first impressions, and in this “case”, it show quality.

On the leather sheath comes a belt loop and diagonal cross strap to hold in the knife securely. While it sits snug, the knife is super sharp so that if you don’t put it in carefully, you could accidentally slice the edge of the sheath.

Overall, you’ll be pleased with the sheath. It feels like it is durable and well-constructed, and provides excellent retention to keep this big knife in place and from falling out all over the place. If you’re going hog hunting and go to draw your knife and find it’s missing … it can make for a disaster. So, you can’t underestimate the value of a quality sheath that does what it’s supposed to (and feels comfortable resting on your side)!

Design

The TOPS Wild Pig Hunter is actually inspired, and based on a Russian design from Kizlyar Knives.

Leo Espinoza is the designer for this knife. He is regarded as a premier and remarkable knife designer, known for making rugged and tactical oriented knives. He deserves credit for this knife because it is truly a remarkable work of art, and could certainly become an icon or one of the more prominent knives for wild boar hunting. It is not just a large knife. It was designed with a careful balance of weight to size ratio, blade shape, and balance. The type of knife that you can certainly pass down for generations, even for tactical tasks.

It has the look and feel of a custom knife … the quality of a custom knife as well, but without the price (which can be as much as $1,000).

I like the noticeable Black River Wash on the blade which gives it an attractive non-glare finish (an even and rich coating throughout the blade). Overall, a very aesthetically pleasing design.

Verdict

best hog skinning knife
If you are looking for the best hog hunting knife, then the TOPS Wild Pig Hunter should be a strong consideration for you. It will become a quick favorite in your bag for both pig hunting and combat.

A truly phenomenal knife created with a ton of attention to detail and craftsmanship. A knife that is not only attractive but functional, and of super high quality.

Albeit, one thing to consider in this TOPS Wild Pig Hunter review is that it is not for those on a budget looking for a $10 knife. This is the real deal for a tactical, or more specifically, pig hunting knife. It will do the job, and do it in style. If you know how to handle a knife this big (again, a 7.5 inch blade), and have a need for it, you won’t be disappointed. However, this is NOT for hunting and skinning small game (squirrel or rabbit is a no). For most small game, it will be way too big. Others swear by this knife, in the event that things should hit the fan, this is their go-to fixed blade. A versatile knife for sure.

I’m impressed by the super high end workmanship and finish of the knife. Many users rave about how exceptionally well it performs on wild pig hunting, but also for tactical, combat/fighting, slashing and harder-use tasks. It is made for stabbing and deep penetration, so make sure that it aligns with your own needs and hunting style. For the money, it is outstanding value at the price for a good thrusting blade, excellent balance, and a heavy duty knife ready to get to work. If you continue to look around online you will see that most that use it, love it!

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Pros

  • Incredibly sharp
  • Blade Sharpness and Edge Retention
  • Overall Quality
  • Handle Material
  • Blade Material

Cons

  • Price point
  • Some would prefer a kydex sheath

Questions and Answers

The TOPS Knives Wild Pig Hunter has a thick blade. Will it be hard to sharpen and maintain its edge?

While it indeed has a large and thick blade, it still maintains an edge very well, largely because of the high-quality heat treating by TOPS. So in short, while it does have a thick blade, it does not mean that it cannot be kept and maintained razor sharp.

What Is The Knife Designed For?

As the name suggests, this knife is the epitome for wild pig hunting. However, it also has wide-use and functionality, and could also be as a survival knife, combat knife, skinning large game, or even bush work. Or you know, should things hit the fan.

Is this knife worth the money?

It really depends on what you are using it for. If you read through the review, and have a need for either pig hunting, or other hard-use situations, then absolutely! At this price point, for what this knife was designed to do, it is incredible value (keep in mind that it is USA made as well). With high-quality materials, a razor sharp blade, leather sheath, quality steel, and a very ergonomic handle, it is remarkable that is in the same league as $600 custom made knives!

Can this knife be thrown?

It has excellent balance and grip, and if you know what you are doing, the answer is yes.

Wild Hog and Boar Knife Buyer’s Guide

When looking to purchase a wild hog hunting knife, you should be most concerned with:

1) Blade Length

2) Handle Grip and Comfort

3) Type of Blade

4) Sharpness and Edge Retention

5) Price

(1) Blade Length

As discussed in our buyer’s guide for how to select the best skinning knife, blade length matters when it comes to hunting and skinning different sized game. For instance, a smaller blade is more ideal for smaller game as it allows you to maneuver more freely and precisely without accidentally cutting too much, or yourself.

When it comes to an animal with as thick of hide as feral hogs have, you certainly need a larger, and thicker blade. In this situation, I recommend a 6 – 10 Inch blade that can cleanly, and effortlessly slice through a massive boar. The longer the blade, the easier it is to get the job done more efficiently, and even more humanely.

(2) Handle Grip and Comfort

Handle grip and comfort is of extreme importance as well. If you are hunting wild boar, in the chaos, you cannot afford for your knife to slip out of your grasp. It needs to rest comfortably, and securely. Whichever knife that you choose to use for hunting pig, make sure you that feel comfortable and in control.

Hogs love swamps. That means many times you can be operating in very muddy environments. It’s imperative to have a knife where a little bit of mud, or blood, are not going to ruin the hunt because you cannot maintain a grip.

(3) Type of Blade

The type of blade is important, particularly if it is fixed or folding. For hunting wild boar, since you will be using such a large blade, it typically should be a fixed blade, and would be my recommendation.

(4) Blade Sharpness

Also of up-most importance is the sharpness of the blade, and its edge retention. Hunting wild pig requires an extremely sharp blade tip that can puncture through feral hog’s deep and thick hide. To successfully, and safely, have a knife kill, your fixed blade needs a very sharp point that can puncture and quickly kill the boar. Different knives will create different experiences, and it is often because of the blade sharpness. A sharper and thicker blade can penetrate deeper, making it a quicker, safer and more humane kill.

(5) Price

Lastly, price should be a consideration, and varies by person. There is a wide spectrum from a cheap hog hunting knife to searching for a high-end custom pig hunting knife that you’ll be proud to pass down for generations. Since these are generally larger and more rugged knives, they tend to be higher in price.

However, I would recommend keeping in consideration the delicacy of this type of work. If you are looking for a pig hunting knife because you want to get up close, then it is worth investing a bit extra into a higher-quality and dependable knife that you know will not only do its job well, but can be reliable to last many years. If the knife is going to have hot spots or potentially not penetrate through, then its usage and practicality in the field becomes very, very limited. It also is worth considering a knife that has additional functionality, and not just limited to one specific task.

All of these were strong considerations in our TOPS Knife Wild Pig Hunter review. With all things considered, including its price point, it truly is an excellent option.

Other Articles You Might Want To Read:

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http://www.huntsharp.com/best-field-dressing-knife/

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