CAMPING & HIKING

Best Throwing Knives: Tips & Tricks for All Skill Levels

Throwing knives review
Daniel Carraway
Written by Daniel Carraway

The best throwing knives are defined by a number of factors. Whether you are a neophyte to the art of throwing weapons and you are looking to master a new skill, or you already have considerable experience under your belt, you are going to want to have the best set of knives behind every knife toss you make.

It’s true that ultimately it depends on your skill level as a knife-thrower, but the quality of the throwing knives also makes a big difference on how well you can handle them. A well-balanced knife will definitely be easier to throw than a knife that is off-balance. To help you find the throwing knives that will sharpen your skill instead of dull it, we’ve come up with 7 recommendations.

Throwing knife blade

All of the throwing knives that make it to this list are well-made and feel great when handled. We also pay attention to the price so you would not need to break the bank for your new set of throwing knives. And most importantly, all of these knives pass a certain standard of durability. Throwing knives are often put to rough handling, so we understand that they need to be able to withstand abuse.

Our Top Picks

Product nameWeightDimensionsBest usePrice
GH2033 Competition Triple Knife Set2.4 pounds12 1/8 inch overall length;
13 x 3.2 x 1.7 inches
Ideal for beginners and intermediate throwersCheck price on Amazon
UC2772 Expendables Kunai Thrower Set1.5 pounds12 inch overall length;
13 x 3.3 x 1.5 inches
Intermediate to expert throwers; collectorsCheck price on Amazon
Cord Grip Triple Thrower Knife Set1.2 pounds8 5/8 inches overall length;
4 1/4 inch blades
Beginners, knife collectorsCheck price on Amazon
SWTK10CP Throwing Knives Set1.31 poundsHandle 5 inch;
blade 5 inch;
overall length 10.0 inch;
thickness 0.14 inch
Beginner’s useCheck price on Amazon
Perfect Point TK-014-9S Throwing Knife Set0.8 pounds9 inch overall lengthBeginner’s useCheck price on Amazon
F041TN-CP Throwing Knives Set1.1 pounds1.5 x 0.1 x 10 inchesBeginners to intermediate usersCheck price on Amazon
Tomahawk Throwing Knife SetJust under 0.3 pounds7 x 3 x 3 inchesBeginner’s useCheck price on Amazon

Things to consider before buying

Bear in mind that what suits a beginner might not be ideal for someone of considerable skill.  On the other hand, there are some features that you, as a knife thrower, should come to expect from every set of knives you buy.

The Quality of Metal

When shopping around for throwing knives, the first thing you must demand from any set are knives made of exceptional metal materials.  The grades of stainless steel really make a difference in the quality of the blades.

Throwing Knife materials

The most common material you will find is 420, 440, or other similar grades of stainless steel which are made with a carbon compound to strengthen the blade and the edge of the metal.  The same blades are far more resistant to corrosion as well.  You should, at all costs, avoid softer metals as this may result in knife blades bending and eventually breaking.

If your blades are made of metal that is of a poorer quality, the knives will scratch, chip, and dent with ease.  This also means they will have a tendency to break and snap with considerable ease, and then you are off shopping again for a replacement instead of practicing your throwing skills.

The knives you buy need to be of high-quality metal so it can withstand the impact of a strike on a hard object/target.  You want your blades, not only to be made of stainless steel, but of metal that is a single body design, not two pieces.

The absence of a break in the design ensures an even distribution of the vibration the knife endures from impact with a target. If the blade is made in separate pieces from the handle, there is then a weak point where the handle and the knife blade meet in the design.

High Quality of Construction

The throwing knives you buy should have nice, very sharp tips – the tips have to penetrate a target with ease on a repeated basis.  The handle needs to be wide enough to grip, but also smooth and free of any elements that might injure the hand when you release the weapon from your hand and throw it.

Throwing Knife Handle

If you opt for embellishments like grip enhancing features, make sure the cordage is not only wrapped tightly, but securely so it doesn’t come free during a toss of the blade.

Well-designed throwing knives have super sharp tips, dull blades and are perfectly balanced. This means the weight in the tip and weight of the handle are balanced. The knives will allow for a smooth toss into a target and they have a durable construction in the most vulnerable area -between the blade and handle.

Handle Ergonomics

Ergonomics is a term referring to the way a knife is designed to accommodate you physically. Think of the weight of the blade, the balance, the grippage, and the handle’s shape. All these things help in developing blade ergonomics.

Handle Ergonomics

When it comes to ergonomics, a knife blade has to be sharp at the tip to ensure ease of target penetration; dull in the middle between the tip and the handle in order to prevent severe cuts, and the handle needs to have a good solid feel.

A wide handle is most appreciated as it gives you greater control whereas a smaller handle may prove hard to manipulate. Special handle features such as textures or curved handles might prove comfortable for you as well. The easiest knives to throw however, are those featuring straight blades and handles. The straight blades are more predictable in terms of trajectory and feel.

Length and Width

The dimensions of the throwing weapons you buy are very important as they will play a role in how far you can toss them and how easily you can handle the weapons. Throwing knives need to be light and solid, but if they are too light the blades are considered floaters that can prove amazingly difficult to control.

Length and width

The lighter knives will sometimes seem to defy physics and project way off course because there is not enough weight to keep them propelling forward.

Likewise, knives that are too heavy are weighted down too soon and are less likely to reach the desired target. In order to assess the weight of your throwing knives, you will need to do some calculations. Take and multiply 1-1.5 ounces times each inch the knife measures from the end of the handle to the tip of the blade.

Thus, a knife measuring 12 inches should measure 12 ounces or up to 18 ounces. You want your measurements to be between 18 and 24 ounces roughly. If you are tossing the knives about five meters or more, you might want to go a bit heavier with the weight of the blade so the blade remains more stable during the longer flight distance.

Unbalanced and Balanced Throwing Knives

When you want a throwing knife you can toss from both ends of the weapon, the weapon has to be precisely balanced.  If the weapon is not balanced then the knife can only be thrown from a single end, not both.  The center of the weapon is where you will find what is conveniently called the Center of Gravity on the weapon and it is about 1.5 inches in either direction of the actual center of the knife.

Balanced Throwing Knives

When you throw a flawlessly balanced knife, it will rotate in perfect circles until it eventually reaches its destination. An unbalanced knife will not spin in such a fashion and will have a trajectory that is far more difficult to determine.

Some knives have weights so you can adjust the COG or center of gravity on the blades you are using before you throw them. Some knife throwers like the ability to change the weight of blades as they see fit, and other knife throwers see no point in the use of knife weights when well-balanced knives can be purchased instead.

You will want to experiment with throwing some knives before you buy any weapons to throw. It will give you a sense of how the blades feel and whether you prefer balanced or unbalanced, heavier knives for throwing purposes.

Best products on today’s market

Below we created a list with some of the best throwing knives on the market. We reviewed each one of them so you can learn more and, who knows, maybe even find your next set.

GH2033 Competition Triple Knife SetThe GH2033 Competition Triple Knife Throwing Set

Price: Approximately $40

Weight: 2.4 pounds

Dimensions: 12 1/8 inch overall length; 13 x 3.2 x 1.7 inches

Specific features: 420 stainless steel construction; ergonomic styling; single piece body construction; sold with a leather sheath

Best use: Ideal for beginners and intermediate throwers

The GH2033 Competition Triple Knife Set by Gil Hibben is manufactured out of 420 stainless steel, a metal more durable than the 410 or 416 stainless steel variants and it serves as a higher carbon variant of the metal. The steel in these durable blades is made of a minimum of 12 percent chromium thereby giving the metal a superior corrosion resistant property.

What’s more, the blades are not only ergonomically designed, meaning their handle is made to fit just perfectly into your hand when you are using it, the single body construction ensures there are no weak points in the overall bodily distribution of the blade. The solid leather sheath keeps your blades protected when not in use and ensures the prevention of accidental injury.

This GH2033 triple knife throwing set will surely meet your affordability factors with a price that is a good value for money for the quality it offers, and they are visually attractive enough to appeal to you if you are among knife collectors or if you consider yourself one of the many hardcore knife throwers out there.

The blades are tested for both durability and safety before being sold. You are bound to find the blades well balanced, phenomenal in terms of design, balance, and strength, and the weightiness of the blade ensures a limited amount of ricochet when practicing. This is an ideal set if you desire one easy to control and one that proves long lasting.

PROS:

  • Made from high-quality materials
  • Durable and resistant to corrosion
  • Great design, which allows for a good grip
  • Weight is ideal, not too heavy and not too light

CONS:

  • A bit expensive
  • A bit noisy as it often rings when you miss
  • It comes with a leather sheath but it is poorly designed

Related: For similarly designed knives of different sizes and prices compared to the GH2033, consider the United Cutlery GH5029 GenX Pro Gil Hibben Set or United Cutlery GH5030 GenX Pro Gil Hibben Set. The GH5029 is of a larger variety, and is around $10 more expensive, whereas the GH5030 is smaller and around $10 cheaper than the GH2033. Which one suits you best depends on your own individual preferences.

Check the price on Amazon

UC2772 Expendables Kunai Thrower SetUC2772 Expendables Kunai Thrower Set

Price: Approximately $35

Weight: 1.5 pounds

Dimensions: 12 inch overall length; 13 x 3.3 x 1.5 inches

Specific features: AUS-6 stainless steel blade; cord-wrapped handle; balanced blades; corrosive resistant properties; The Expendables logo, and sharp tips

Best use: Intermediate to expert throwers; collectors

The UC2772 Expendables Kunai Thrower Set is remarkably affordable so you do not have to break the bank to buy it. This United Cutlery set comes with an attractive sheath to protect the blades when not in use and to prevent any accidental cuts or injuries during transport to your favorite knife throwing location. The sheath can be attached to a belt or to your leg as you prefer.

This three piece throwing set has blades made of AUS-stainless steel, which is a form of metal containing small amounts of chromium and high amounts of carbon so it proves tough, corrosion resistant, and the edge of the blade promises a longer lasting hold.

These blades are beautifully balanced and have cord wrapped handles to ensure your firm grip and ease of control. The design of the blades is based on those used in the movie and when they arrive at your door, they come in packaging bearing “The Expendables” logo. The blade tips are extremely sharp and made for easy penetration of a target.

PROS:

  • A stylish design
  • Very sharp
  • Well-balanced and allows for a good grip
  • Durable because it’s made from a tough stainless steel material
  • Comes with a good sheath

CONS:

  • The handle cord is the only part of this throwing knife that falls apart easily
  • Its sharpness is a double-edged weapon.
  • Can be tricky to throw

Related: The Kunai is a fancy throwing knife, so it’s naturally a bit expensive. If you’re looking for a smaller, cheaper option that is designed similarly, you can purchase The United Cutlery UC2904 Throwing Knife Set. Around $15 cheaper, this throwing knife set does the job adequately.

Check the price on Amazon

Cord Grip Triple Thrower Knife SetThe Cord Grip Triple Thrower Knife Set

Price: Approximately $25

Weight: 1.2 pounds

Dimensions: 8 5/8 inches overall length; 4 1/4 inch blades

Specific features: Blades made of 420 JS metal; cord wrapped grips; shorter blades; balanced; comes with a black nylon sheath

Best use: Beginners, knife collectors

Reach into your wallet right now and you will probably find you can afford to buy the Cord Grip Triple Thrower Knife Set by Gil Hibben. With an amazingly low price for the set, it really isn’t a hard sell.

With this set you are investing in three exceptional throwing knives, all of which are fitted with high tensile cord wrapped around the handles – a feature leading to superior grip and exceptional knife control.

Each blade has 420 JS stainless steel, which is a metal with a medium amount of carbon in it. The carbon content leads to resistance to corrosion when you are in a salt-free atmosphere, and in other industrial environments. The 420 JS grade metal is more durable than a 440 grade and it is resistant to basic household cleaners and chemicals.

These knives are a bit smaller than some sets on the market, with a measurement of 85/8 inches in all compared to some sets offering blades over a foot long.  Nevertheless, these smaller blades are ideal for anyone looking for durable, balanced, and easy to control blades.

PROS:

  • Affordable price
  • Ideal weight, feels perfectly solid despite the small size
  • Well-balanced and durable, overall a well-made knife

CONS:

  • Not sharp but has great points
  • The handle cord may come loose after a few throws

Related: The United Cutlery UC2904 Lightning Bolt Triple Knife Throwing Set can be a great alternative if for some reason the Cord Grip Triple Thrower does not cut it for you. They are similarly designed and priced. Both are considered as small throwing knives but have a nice weight.

Check the price on Amazon

SWTK10CP Throwing Knives SetThe SWTK10CP Throwing Knives Set

Price: Approximately $30

Weight: 1.31 pounds

Dimensions: Handle 5 inch; blade 5 inch; overall length 10.0 inch; thickness 0.14 inch

Specific features: Blades made of 2Cr13 metal; gray color; sold with a nylon sheath; originates from China; the Bullseye model

Best use: Beginner’s use

These blades feature a decent length for beginners and are made of metal durable enough to last a while, or at least long enough for a beginner to determine if you want to continue with knife throwing and upgrade to a more durable set.

The Smith and Wesson SWTK10CP Throwing Knives are made with a very basic type of stainless steel called 2Cr13 and it is a common metal found in cutting tools. The 2Cr13 metal is durable enough to have you throwing the blades at deadwood with ease, but the knives do not handle live wood variants as easily.

These knives are recommended if you are looking for a test set or a transitional set to work with for a while. The nylon sheath makes for ease of transport and blade protection. The set is priced affordably enough.

PROS:

  • A great starter knife set for beginners
  • Overall great weight and balance
  • A simple but effective design, allows for a good grip

CONS:

  • Not very durable, since it’s made from medium-quality materials, but should be good enough for beginners
  • On the expensive side for beginner knives

Related: Slightly smaller than the SWTK10CP but with overall the same feel and design, The Smith and Wesson SWTK8CP 8-inch Throwing Knives is a great alternative for those of you who prefer to throw smaller knives. The same pros and cons apply. It’s a great set for beginners, but you might want to replace it with better knives once you’ve outgrown the newbie phase.

Check the price on Amazon

Perfect Point TK-014-9S Throwing Knife SetPerfect Point TK-014-9S Throwing Knife Set

Price: Approximately $15

Weight: 0.8 pounds

Dimensions: 9 inch overall length

Specific features: 440 stainless steel blades; nylon sheath comes included with the set; lightweight; matte finish; double edge blades

Best use: Beginner’s use

The Perfect Point TK-014-9S Throwing Knife Set is priced very reasonably. The knives are made of 440 stainless steel – a type of metal considered a higher grade because of its higher carbon content.

With greater carbon content in the metal you end up with more durable, longer lasting edges.  These knives feature sharp double edge blades making them slide into the target with ease.

The sheath is a woven material that keeps the blades snug and protected during transport.  These blades are ideal for the beginner looking to master speed of the throw and precision of the toss. The handles are large and wide, making for comfort when using the blades and a better feel overall.

PROS:

  • Very affordable, so it’s a great option for those who just want to try their hands at knife-throwing
  • Well-balanced and well-designed
  • Weight and size are great for beginners who want to get a feel for throwing knives in general

CONS:

  • Not very durable
  • Not for veteran knife-throwers

Related: For another budget throwing knife option, consider purchasing The Perfect Point RC-086-12 Set with 12 Knives. For the price, the fact that it comes with 12 knives is amazing. The Perfect Point PP-002-3S Set and The Perfect Point PP-024-3 Throwing Knife Set are also great options for beginners.

Check the price on Amazon

F041TN-CP Throwing Knives Set
SOG Specialty Throwing Knives Set

Price: Approximately $30

Weight: 1.1 pounds

Dimensions: 1.5 x 0.1 x 10 inches

Specific features: 420 stainless steel blades; wide handles; cord wrapped for grippage; balanced, light, well-proportioned

Best use: Beginners to intermediate users

The F041TN-CP Throwing Knives Set is by SOG Specialty Knives & Tools. The knives feature a 4.4-inch blade and a sizeable handle making them comfortable to throw. The paracord wrapping around the handles ensures a good grip when you are using them.

This set of three knives is easily transported around in the nylon sheath they are sold with as well. The blades are made of corrosive resistant 420 stainless steel so they are durable and long lasting. The knives are sold with a limited lifetime warranty. The aerodynamics and balance of these knives can’t be beaten.

PROS:

  • Great quality for the price
  • Durable and comes with a stylish design that won’t deteriorate with time
  • Well-balanced and comes in a great size
  • Lightweight but doesn’t feel flimsy

CONS:

  • The handle cord is not properly molded with the handle
  • The cord also throws off the balance a bit

Related: SOG Specialty Knives & Tools FX41N-CP Fling Throwing Knife is another great knife from SOG. This one is of a bigger size, and heavier. If you prefer throwing bigger knives, you should consider purchasing this one instead of the F041TN-CP.

Check the price on Amazon

Tomahawk Throwing Knife SetTomahawk Throwing Knife Set

Price: Approximately $15

Weight: Just under 0.3 pounds

Dimensions: 7 x 3 x 3 inches

Specific features: Large handles; small blades with pointed tips; stainless steel blades; nylon sheath

Best use: Beginner’s use

The Tomahawk Throwing Knife Set is an attractive throwing knife set by United Cutlery.  The knives are priced differently, depending on where you buy, but it’s usually quite affordable. One look and you’ll notice that it’s a really good-looking set of knives.

This three piece set features short blades measuring all of 2.5 inches in length and the handles are about twice as long to make for ease of handling. The stainless steel blades are corrosion-resistant and durable. The nylon sheath protects the blades during transport and storage.

Overall, this set of throwing knives is a great option for those who are just dipping their toes into knife throwing. It’s good looking, affordable and gets the job done. However, this may not be the best for veteran knife throwers.

PROS:

  • Stylish design
  • A long handle that allows for a good grip
  • Affordable price
  • Durable for milder use

CONS:

  • Not suitable for veteran knife-throwers
  • A bit heavy for its small size

Related: Another small and affordable throwing knife option is the 6” Ninja Kunai Spikes Throwing Knives Set with Sheath. This one is very slim and sleek, so it might not be suitable for heavy-duty knife-throwing, but it’s a great option for beginners.

Check the price on Amazon

Wrap Up

When you choose throwing knives, you have much to consider.  You’ll have to think about the brand, the condition of the blades, the condition of the points, and the ergonomics of the blades’ design.

Finding the best blades will also be based on the safety level of the weapons, your throwing level skill, and whether or not the blades are balanced, weighted with special weights, or unbalanced.  Essentially, your personal preferences and skill levels define the best buy.

SW throwing knives

Considering all of the features mentioned above and after going through our list of suggestions, which one do you think is the best set of throwing knives for you and why? Do you have another favorite set that you think we should know about? Share it with us in the comments section below.   

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Daniel Carraway
Daniel Carraway

Daniel Carraway joined our team last year. He is a gear freak when it comes to hiking, climbing and camping. He went to REI Outdoor School to meet new people and learn best practices. Don’t even try to argue with him about the latest backpack or ice axe, he tried most of them. Daniel’s dream is to climb Mount Everest.

  • Andrew Richardson

    The Expendables Kunai Thrower Set are pretty darn nice throwing knives. They are large, and they stick better, are more accurate, and just overall easier to deal with. The 12″ length is just right, to give these enough weight to throw and stick. Then you can throw a little longer between having to walk back and fetch your knives (unless of course you have a very smart dog willing to fetch them for you). Recommended, by a pretty picky guy.

  • Daniel Carraway

    Good choice Andrew! You must be a skillful thrower if I reckon by your choice of weapon. The knife set is also very affordable so that’s definitely a plus point. Most novices and mid-level “players” also appreciate the material of these beauties. Thanks for the input, by the way.

  • John L. Streik

    I am really a fan of ninjas when I was young. I thought it was easy to throw knives, but actually, it’s tough. I have bought this type of butterfly knife before and when I flipped it, it fell apart at the wrong moment. Good thing I was not hurt. So initially I do not recommend butterfly knives. But just recently, I received a Bradley Kimura V butterfly knife as a gift. I had to Loctite the pivot screws after about 3 days of flipping but surprisingly, it hasn’t given me any problems since then. The only adjustment I would like for the Kimura V is to have the edge of the spear point blade a little more recessed or for them to put in a spacer that covers the edge of the blade when the knife is closed for more protection.

  • Daniel Carraway

    A good quality knife is best. I can’t say it enough but don’t skimp on quality and buy cheaper versions. For safety, durability and accuracy, look for the best brands as listed above. I’m glad you didn’t hurt yourself John and the Bradley Kimura V is indeed a great looking knife and high quality, too.

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