Fishing is a favorite and passion for many people like me. Fishing is also a job for many other professional fishermen.
It is not easy to catch fish, especially with big, fast and wise ones. We need useful tools to ensure having a more relaxing and exciting experience!
Table of Contents
- Why Do We Need The Best Fillet Knife For Fish?
- How To Pick The Best Fillet Knife
- What Is The Best Fillet Knife For Fishermen In 2021?
- Fillet Knife Reviews [Updated 2021]
- #1- Bubba Blade 9″ Tapered Fillet Knife
- #2- Bubba Blade 7″ Tapered Fillet Knife
- #3- Rapala Electric Fillet Knife
- Rapala Lithium Ion Cordless Fillet Knife
- #4- Dalstrong Gladiator Fillet Knife
- #5- Rapala Superflex Fillet Knife
- The BEST
- How To Sharpen A Fillet Knife And Keep It Sharp
Why Do We Need The Best Fillet Knife For Fish?
A fillet knife is a knife specially designed to fillet fish:
Fish have countless species of many different sizes. In general, fish filleting is a pretty dangerous task for all of us because we have to work in wet, slippery conditions with many mucus such as skin, scales, blood, and intestine of fish.
If you use a poor quality knife with a blunt blade…
Therefore, it is necessary to use a specialized knife to fillet fish.
Above are the most significant benefits that a great fillet knife gives users.
In all, it is an essential tool for fishermen to go fishing.
Based on the experience of processing thousands of fish, we highly recommend the 5 best fillet knives for pro fishermen as well as busy cooks to fillet fish effortlessly:
Bubba Blade 9" Fillet Knife
Bubba Blade 7" Fillet Knife
Rapala Electric Fillet Knife
Dalstrong 7” Fillet Knife
Rapala 6” Fillet Knife
How To Pick The Best Fillet Knife
One knife can be the best choice for this person, but it is not sure to be the best for others.
A pro angler has different requirements compared to a young fisherman. An avid outdoorsman also has different demands with a cook at home.
To choose the best fillet knife, first, you need to determine your intended use and expected budget.
This really matters as it helps you not deviate!
Below is our instructions on how to select the most suitable fillet knife for fish:
- How to choose the blade
- How to choose the handle
- Consider an electric fillet knife for heavy-duty work
- Pay attention to knife sheath
1- How to choose the blade
Blade length should match your sizes of fish, especially care about their surface and girth sizes.
If catching much fish of various sizes, you should take the average size of them to be the basis of choosing the most suitable blade.
4 inches, 6 inches, 7-7.5 inches, and 9 inches are the most popular sizes of a fillet knife. It will be perfect if each angler possesses a set of all those knives because you can use each of them for appropriate fish sizes with it.
As far as we know, the shorter the blade is, the more flexible and thinner it will be. In contrast, the longer blade is, the stiffer and thicker it is.
A fillet knife must be very flexible to help us easily remove all fish bones, and get the maximum amount of fish meat.
There is no specific scale for flexibility. We should select knives produced by famous brands of the industry. Their products have been highly appreciated over the years.
The blade tip of a fillet knife is often made extraordinarily flexible and sharp, while the blade’s thickness and stiffness are gradually increased to its heel.
Blade of a fillet knife needs to:
To satisfy the above requirements, you should aim at fillet knives made of high carbon stainless steel.
Besides, we prefer fillet knives having blades coated with premium non-stick layers.
It can be said that this is the standard of a leading quality knife:
2- How to choose the handle
Handle must be fit and comfortable
A fillet knife with good non-slip handle is safe, reliable, and easy to use. This feature is necessary for fishers dealing with fish because their hands are always wet with slime.
We highly appreciate the knives with anti-slip design and safety for users such as:
Also, the handles should be well finished to prevent stains, fishy smell, and easy cleaning.
3- Consider an electric fillet knife for heavy-duty work
When you face a mess of fish that you need to deal with, what do you think?
I guess you’re thinking how long it will take you to clean all of them.
In this case, an electric fillet knife is ideal for you:
4- Pay attention to knife sheath
The knife sheath is also a factor to consider when choosing a fillet knife.
Because our fillet knife is usually as sharp as a razor, it is very easy to hurt ourselves and those around us. It is also easy to blunt.
Therefore, you should pick a fillet knife with a sheath that is convenient for storing and carrying; at the same time safe for users.
Usually, cheap fillet knives do not have a good sheath so you should choose the leading cutlery brands in the world.
What Is The Best Fillet Knife For Fishermen In 2021?
When you have finished reading the selection guide above, I believe you have had ideas about the fillet knife you are looking for.
Whether you’re looking for the best fillet knife for saltwater fish or freshwater fish, big salmon or panfish… We can confirm that your knife is on this best list:
These knives are all made specifically for filleting fish. They are high quality and possess outstanding features that ordinary knives do not have.
They are a valuable investment for any fisherman or busy cook who wants to handle fish gently and effectively.
9-inch Titanium coated
7-inch Titanium coated
7-inch satin polished
6-inch PTFE coated
You can see that each knife has its own strengths and limitations. They are designed by manufacturers to meet the specific requirements of users.
Our reviews below will give you insight into each of the fillet knives above so that you can easily make the final decision.
Fillet Knife Reviews [Updated 2021]
First is a sporty fillet knife. It is made by fishermen for fishermen.
#1- Bubba Blade 9″ Tapered Fillet Knife
[BEST For Professionals]
Features + Specs
Bubba Blade Knife
HC stainless steel
Non-slip grip handle
Why do we pick this knife?
It can be said that the Bubba Blade is a fillet knife different from the rest. It has worked with us to handle thousands of fish over the years.
As professional fishermen, we all aim at big prey like tuna, tarpon, marlin, redfish, swordfish, wahoo, flounder, striped bass. So we need a long and robust fillet knife to cut large pieces of fillets from their bodies.
Yes, the Bubba Blade is a fillet knife with a great handle:
We really like the grip and pads trigger on the handle of the knife. This add-on provides an exciting feeling during use.
This fillet knife also has excellent slip resistance, providing peace of mind when handling fish, especially for catfish:
Furthermore, its hole lanyard is also my favorite feature when traveling.
It would be missing without mentioning the synthetic sheath of the fillet knife:
We are completely assured of the Bubba Blade safety sheath!
On the opposite side, this Bubba Blade fillet knife has some limitations…
It can be affirmed that this Bubba Blade knife gives us the greatest satisfaction. It is also the safest designed fillet knife for fishers.
We much appreciate this knife because of its ability:
In a nutshell, the 9” Bubba Blade is the best fillet knife for big-sized fish such as Atlantic salmon, redfish, striped bass, yellowfin tuna, blue marlin, tarpon, wahoo, and so on.
An indispensable tool on the boat of professional anglers!
Next is also a product of Bubba Blade.
#2- Bubba Blade 7″ Tapered Fillet Knife
This fillet knife is similar to its 9″ brother. Between them, there is only a slight difference in length and weight.
Also, there is a general rule that the shorter the blade is, the higher the flexibility.
Therefore, 7″ blade is more flexible than 9″ blade, and it makes it easier to manipulate when we need to fillet fish of medium to small size.
We can create more precise cuts with shorter blades, but vice versa short blades are not as strong as longer ones.
Bubba Blade Comparison Chart
Features + Specs
7” Bubba Blade
9” Bubba Blade
When do we pick it?
In those cases, this Bubba Blade 7″ fillet knife is ideal. It fits most fish sizes you catch.
The knife is best for medium-sized fish like bass, salmon, trout, walleye, Northern pike, catfish, mullet, etc. It is also great to handle other fish species.
We can say that 7″ Bubba Blade is the best “all-around” fillet knife. It is used for all types of fish, from saltwater fish to freshwater fish, from large fish to small fish.
For avid fishermen, I strongly recommend the Bubba Blade pair (7″ + 9″). They will be the perfect choice for your fish.
I think when you go fishing for fun to reduce the stress of everyday life; then the fish fillet would be delightful. It brings a feeling of contentment, enjoy with our achievements.
But for professional anglers, when they often have to deal with a large amount of fish or a fish mess, then this is arduous work. It consumes a lot of time and effort.
In this case, an electric fillet knife is ideal for fishermen to fillet fish quickly and efficiently. From there, you will have more time to enjoy the beautiful scenery on the lake with a cold drink.
All you need to do with a top electric fillet knife is to hold and control it to the place you want to cut. And its powerful electric motor will do the rest for you.
Here is the best knife in the industry:
#3- Rapala Electric Fillet Knife
[Best for heavy-duty work]
Features + Specs
Rapala Electric Knife
110V, 96 watts
HC stainless steel
Non-slip grip handle
Advanced airflow design
Why is it worthwhile?
The limitations of the knife
Although there are still some limitations, we can confirm that the Rapala knife is the best electric fillet knife for avid fishermen, a must-have gear in the fishing season.
Best Alternative of Rapala Heavy-Duty Electric Knife
Rapala is a leading brand in the fishing industry, they know what fishermen need, and they always improve their products to meet those needs.
To overcome the biggest drawback of the corded Rapala knife above, they have introduced this great improvement model:
Rapala Lithium Ion Cordless Fillet Knife
In general, this Rapala cordless fillet knife has the same function as its corded brother in general.
Here are the advantages and outstanding features of the product:
On the opposite side, this cordless fillet knife also has its disadvantages:
Our advice: Whether you use a corded or cordless version, we still recommend that you have a traditional fillet knife in your kit. This is necessary, especially when you go to places where there is no power grid or minimal power supply.
If Bubba blades have no opponents for outdoor activities like sports fishing then in the kitchen world, there is no better knife than this Dalstrong knife:
#4- Dalstrong Gladiator Fillet Knife
[A Premium Knife]
Features + Specs
Dalstrong Fillet Knife
HC stainless steel
Why do we like it?
It can be said that this is a fillet knife that you will enjoy from the first touch.
The Dalstrong is a top quality fillet knife, crafted exquisitely by skilled craftsmen.
About the blade:
About the handle:
Besides, the Dalstrong fillet knife comes with two sheaths for two different purposes:
The knife drawbacks
Unlike Bubba blade, the fillet knives are great for sports fishing. The Dalstrong fillet knife is the best for kitchens.
My wife, a culinary believer, also especially loves sous vide salmon. She judged that the Dalstrong Gladiator is the best fillet knife for salmon or trout so far.
It is very flexible, razor-sharp and has a great balance that makes it easy for users to manipulate on very soft fish like salmon to cut out the perfect fillets for cooking.
We recommend this Dalstrong knife for both professional chefs and home cooks who want to enhance the culinary experience with an excellent knife.
The last position on our best list is Rapala’s classic knife…
#5- Rapala Superflex Fillet Knife
[An affordable knife]
Features + Specs
Rapala Fillet Knife
The advantages of the knife
The Rapala is an ideal fillet knife for young anglers who hunt small fish like panfish, smallmouth bass, crappie, bluegill or rainbow trout.
Because the bigger the fish, the harder it is to catch, it requires a lot of fishing skills and experience.
In short, this Rapala superflex fillet knife is a quality knife; it deserves to be in our fishing gears.
It’s hard to choose the winner here.
I think if you want a fillet knife with sports qualities then you should choose the Bubba blade.
It is the best fillet knife for big-game fishing, very suitable for professional anglers who love new experiences.
But when precise slices are no longer so important, time is the crucial factor, so we strongly recommend the Rapala electric fillet knife for your work.
This electric knife will be handy for those who have to clean a large amount of fish regularly. It helps you speed up the processing of fish and save you a lot of time and effort!
Do not miss these great knives for the busy fishing season and you will find that cleaning fish is easier than ever.
How To Sharpen A Fillet Knife And Keep It Sharp
The blade of a fillet knife is skinny and flexible, making it harder to sharpen than other knives such as chef knife, carving knife.
So it is essential to master the techniques as well as using the right tools to sharpen the knife.
That will help you always get a sharp fillet knife for fish and get practical benefits from it:
Below are helpful guidelines to help you sharpen and maintain your fillet knife properly.
There are two steps to achieving a razor-sharp edge.
- Sharpening step: to remove metal on the blade, reset the V-shape of the cutting edge.
- Honing step: is a polishing step to finish the cutting edge.
First of all, you need a high-quality sharpening stone to sharpen the knife. It can be oilstone, water-wet stone or diamond stone.
You should choose whetstones with both rough and smooth surface to sharpen the fillet knife in two stages.
You should also read the manual of your stone to ensure proper lubrication when you sharpen the knife. Otherwise, the stone will soon become useless.
We have two ways to sharpen knives with sharpening stones:
Things to do when knife sharpening:
Next, are some notes for using and maintaining fillet knives that you should know:
(*) Last updated by James on Oct 09th, 2021.