Recently, I had the opportunity to test out Cold Steel’s Magnum Kukri Machete. I have been a long time fan of the Kukri and have owned a couple of Kukris in the past. The blade design of the Kukri has long been famous for its chopping properties. Authentic Kukris can be somewhat expensive especially ones produced by modern knife companies. Many knife companies have manufactured modern Kukri machetes but it can be difficult to find examples that offer quality construction, ship with a good factory edge and a reasonable price point. I think Cold Steel has done a respectable job at accomplishing this task.
The Cold Steel Magnum Kukri Machete is manufactured from 1055 carbon steel that has been coated with a matte black anti rust compound. The blade length is a 17 inches and with its 5 handle the overall length is 22 inches. Cold Steel also manufactures a slightly smaller version of the Kukri machete that has a 13 inch blade. I was not able to test the smaller version for this article. Blade thickness is 2mm which is less than the thickness of real Kukris. The machete’s handle is made of black polypropylene that has been grooved to improve grip. Considering the overall size the machete is weighs in at just over one pound at 18.2 ounces. This light weight makes it easy to use and considering that most of the weight is in the business end of the blade makes it extremely efficient in accomplishing chopping tasks.
To test out the Cold Steel Magnum Kukri Machete I unleashed it on my backyard which I had not yet had an opportunity to clean up due to the long winter. The first target was a massively overgrown rose bush that has expanded wildly over the last couple of years. The Magnum Kukri performed quite well at removing the 10 to 12 foot branches that had grown out the stump. After about a dozen or so swings the rose bush was eliminated except for stump which will require a shovel to dig out. Next, the Kukri was used on a section of privet hedge that had a couple of years to grow through a fence. Branches that were a quarter of an inch to half inch thick fell quickly to the Magnum Kukri as the weighted blade sheared them off with minimal effort. Lastly, the machete was used to clear swathes of unknown brush and vines that made up the rest of beds in the yard. My wife was surprised how quickly I was able to clear the backyard with the machete and admittedly I was too. I have used other straight bladed machetes to clean up my backyard in the spring and fall and usually it takes a bit longer. The weighted blade of Kukri lends itself to chopping and does not require as much strength each time you swing.
While testing the Magnum Kukri I wore rubberized work gloves that gripped nicely the polypropylene handle. At no point did my hands slip when using the machete and I recommend using gloves when using it for safety reasons. In addition, the handle of the Magnum Kukri has an oversized lanyard. I found it a bit surprising that a lanyard wasn’t included. Usually I make use of the lanyard when using a machete for chopping as well as gloves of some sort. With the right gloves and the handle material I believe that there would be very little issues using the machete even when wet or while raining.
Once I was done using the Magnum Kukri I noticed that the blade of the machete had a few small nicks in it from where the tip struck into the ground. These small nicks will easily be removed with the application of a file to clean up the edge after use. In addition, there was some abrasion of the black anti rust finish on the blade. I expected this abrasion after using the machete and only time will tell if the anti rust finish will protect the blade from oxidation.
The sheath for the Magnum Kukri is made from Condura nylon that covers the entire blade. The machete is secured into the sheath by two snaps. This setup works best if the machete is worn on the right hip. The end of the sheath is reinforced with plastic sheeting to minimize the wear of the Condura. Given the price point the machete the sheath is functional and should last a long time.
Overall, the Cold Steel Magnum Kukri Machete worked extremely well clearing all sorts of brush, bushes and saplings in the backyard. The narrow end of the blade toward the handle can be used for much smaller camp tasks. Cold Steel’s website lists the Magnum Kukri with an M.S.R.P of $34.99. A quick search of the Internet will net you prices around the $20 range. Whether you pay full retail for the machete, or find it cheaper elsewhere you know you are getting a quality product. If you are looking for a great tool to throw into your toolbox, bug out bag, shed or car kit the Cold Steel Magnum Kukri Machete will make a great addition to your heap. Pair it with a file to keep the edge in shape and you will have a functional tool no matter what tasks you use it for.
Our review machete was provided by Knife Hog. For more information visit: