Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

For those who live in areas where firearms are not an option and those that are smart enough to have a back up.

Moderator: ZS Global Moderators

Post Reply
Red Tamarillo
* * *
Posts: 614
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:25 am
Location: Australia

Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Red Tamarillo » Mon Mar 28, 2011 1:52 am

Image

left to right Cold Steel machetes: two handed Panga, two handed Katana, two handed Kukri, two handed (that's all it's called), two handed 21" Latin, one handed 18" Bowie (for comparison).
The Panga is the longest by a tiny bit. The Katana and Kukri similar length though their ratio of blade vs handle lengths are different, the two handed Latin isn't that much shorter.
Panga, Katana, Kukri and Bowie are ~3mm thick, two handed and 21" Latin ~2mm stock.

The Bowie has the best factory grind, a good taper to the edge. All the others have a similar steeper taper.

Image

Bowie with the 21" Latin, note I've filed the black factory coating off all of the edge tapers.

Image

Bowie with the Katana.

Image

General thoughts- looking at them and considering where the weight is and where the fulcrum is, you can see that there is a lump of long metal above the plastic handle, it goes into the handle just past the last 'bolt', then there is a length of lighter plastic handle- but all that weight is above the long light handle.
I've found the sweet spots of the blades are nowhere near their ends. They're all about 2/3rds of the way up the blades. If you try to use the part of the blade above that you can get a nasty vibration in the handle which hits your hand (chopping wood), and twisting if you don't hit dead right. You also don't get the maximum weight or power behind the blade.

How is that a problem? Well, I think they could have designed these blades to be squatter and shorter, more in line with the original two handed, rather than putting the weight on those levers out past where they can do good.

The Latin with it's more evenly distributed weight avoids this issue.

Chopping performance? I think I first expected two handed machetes to be like axes, but they're not, they don't have the usable weight.
When you consider speed one handed vs two handed, you're not going to swing a machete faster two handed than you could one handed, I doubt you even accelerate it that much quicker.
Plus the grinds on these two handed machetes aren't as good as on the one handed machetes.
With a one handed machete you're closer to where you're chopping, so have more control over the precision of your stroke.

In summary whilst it is fun chopping with a two hander (as long as you pay attention to using the sweet spot, and avoiding the vibration), I found it more fun using my 18" Bowie, though the Latin was fun too (it sings when you sharpen it). My Bowie chopped better for me.

User avatar
Sworbeyegib
* * * * *
Posts: 3361
Joined: Tue Jul 15, 2008 2:15 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: night of the living dead is what started it all for me
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Sworbeyegib » Mon Mar 28, 2011 6:59 am

I've been interested in the two handed machete concept since I was a kid and found a machete (latin style) my dad had attached to an axe handle. I have several cold steel machetes, none of the two handed versions though a friend of mine has the original one. They for sure are no substitue for an axe, and anyone who thinks they are, probably haven't had much time behind an axe before. I for one though, really like the two handed latin style.

My biggest wonder with these things, is how hard is it to bushwhack one handed? Turning a machete into a more single use tool (just a chopper) seems kind of silly. I like to hike with a staff, and when going thru thick stuff, having something I need to operate with two hands might be a pain. Machete is king here. I grew up using a scout hatchet, but switched over to machetes when I was about 12 or 13.
**Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don't**

Image

EMEUTIER
*
Posts: 77
Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2010 10:21 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Zombieland
Resident Evil Series
Location: Australia

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by EMEUTIER » Tue Mar 29, 2011 3:38 am

I always thought that the odd (read:non standard eg: kukri/katana) shaped machetes were made more for kicks than intended for any proper use, but i have never wielded a two-handed machete, so yeah.
To JoergSprave on YouTube, Tproa wrote: Sir, I tip my hat to you --- slowly, and without any sudden movement....
Image

Red Tamarillo
* * *
Posts: 614
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:25 am
Location: Australia

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Red Tamarillo » Tue Mar 29, 2011 4:26 am

swordbeyegib- yeah, if you need to really cut something two handed an axe is better designed for that.
The two handed latin does handle fine one handed, the 2mm thickness helps there (light), and helps make up for it's not as good a grind as the Bowie (slim).

Two handed machetes (if designed correctly with a proper weighted handle) are probably better used to cut small branches up in a tree i.e. should be designed for range, and on a long pole (but not too long).

Emeutier- there are lots of reviews on Amazon where people rave about these things, and seem to use them in their backyards as normal tools. I agree with you about the Katana one though.

Storm Crow
* * * * *
Posts: 1979
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 12:09 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead re-make
Location: San Antonio, Texas

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Storm Crow » Tue Mar 29, 2011 1:20 pm

silvermiketrate wrote:Plus the grinds on these two handed machetes aren't as good as on the one handed machetes.
Makes ya wonder if Lynn Thomson just used the two handed machete thing as a way of using up factory seconds of the machete blades...
Proud to be a Neo-Tribal Metalsmith scavenging the wreckage of civilization.

Forged blades: http://www.helmforge.com

Stock removal blades: http://www.helmgrind.com

The Wasteland Crow Project: http://wastelandcrow.blogspot.com

Image

Turtlewolf
* * * * *
Posts: 1767
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 1:58 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Almost all of them........some suck balls though.
Location: Drayton Valley, AB, Canada

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Turtlewolf » Tue Mar 29, 2011 3:56 pm

I don't understand the idea behind the two handed machete, but thankyou for the review it was a decent read and being able to see them side by side was worth the review. I like the look of the bowie blade but more as a fighting pseudo sword than an actual working tool. I can only imagine the tip being a weak place in the blade, but I'm a snob for bolo or at least round nosed blade styles for machetes-you never know when you'll need a shovel and only have your handy dandy machete.
Cheers
------------------------------------------------------
Save a life, delete a Face Book account today.
You can drop your knife, loose your rifle but keep an eye on your axe.
Humanity does not survive alone.

Red Tamarillo
* * *
Posts: 614
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:25 am
Location: Australia

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Red Tamarillo » Tue Mar 29, 2011 6:25 pm

Re seconds- that could be true for the Kukri machete as their normal 1H has the same length blade according to their website (I don't have one any more for comparison, I sold it to a friend), except the handle on the 2H is too fat at the top i.e. if they'd just taken blanks of the 1H without their handles and stuck them into a longer handle the two top bolts would be more in the centre.

The 2H Kukri is probably the most usable of all, as you don't feel too much of the top 1/3rd is wasted, and it has the tip, and the gimmick factor of being able to be thrown as a spear.

I hope they do some more 2H versions like the Latin, they'd be better.

Yeah, the tip on the Bowie is a weak spot. If it broke off you could dig a hole with the remainder, and the sweet spot for chopping would still be preserved in the remainder. Luckily I always have a small shovel lurking somewhere in the backyard.
I'd probably just take my 12" good Ontario if I was going into the woods.

I tried using the 2H machetes to cut down small branches up in a tree yesterday, it was easier just getting a small ladder and using a short 1H machete. I didn't even bother trying to use them on the trunk (I have cut down a small pine tree with the 12" Ontario before, but that was just because I could), instead got out the Wetterlings Large Hunting Axe (which isn't that large).

Turtlewolf
* * * * *
Posts: 1767
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 1:58 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Almost all of them........some suck balls though.
Location: Drayton Valley, AB, Canada

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Turtlewolf » Tue Mar 29, 2011 6:41 pm

I'm starting to think if anyone ever visits your place they'ld have to make sure they had thier tetanis shots up to date for concern of stepping on some peice of gear you left in a convenient place. Of course I also "pity the fool" that ever came over uninvited after hours as well, they'ld not ever know what hit them either. I still like the idea of the bowie blade, it's in my oppinion one of the best combat styles even if it does trade off a bit of utility. If a weapon is why you own machete's then I could see the bowie or even a spear point being a darn good choice.
However a cutlass (like Ontario or Kabar) or a bolo (Tramontina) or even a Khukri style (Kabar or traditional) would certainly seem to serve best even if they do sacrifice a bit of combat use in favor of more utility. Hmmm....I look forward to seeing more reviews from you, they lead to decent discussion.
Cheers
------------------------------------------------------
Save a life, delete a Face Book account today.
You can drop your knife, loose your rifle but keep an eye on your axe.
Humanity does not survive alone.

Red Tamarillo
* * *
Posts: 614
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:25 am
Location: Australia

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Red Tamarillo » Wed Mar 30, 2011 12:24 am

Most things are in the shed. And now I have all those 2H machetes to keep, to trade for supplies in the PAW. They look like they should work good.

There's a few things- axe handle, and old poker- hanging from nails in trees, in case of snakes, though I've never seen one here. Did see a little 5cm long scorpion when digging a hole for a Lime tree. But didn't feel scared as I had a Cold Steel special forces shovel in my hand, and a 12" machete and tomahawk within close reach.
I let the scorpion go peacefully as it was just hanging out. I told people at work I should have caught it to milk it's venom to put on my machetes, to get more respect from my work colleagues- no one messes with someone with scorpion venom smeared on their multiple machetes.

Remember there's that Barong (leaf) style too:

http://www.coldsteel.com/barongmachetes.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

which if sharpened properly is a good blend.

But they all have their sweet spots, and it's like a lot of hobbies- sometimes you just end up with one that appeals to you, with many factors that lead to that decision- aesthetics, performance, associations they have with particular times past or different cultures etc...

Some just feel 'alive' in the hand- I wonder if there's a threshold of 'bite' (i.e. how they stick into the wood) that I like, and once one crosses that, I like it. Some have definitely failed the bite test.

Re reviews, I can do some on the tactical bits to add to large maglites, a tomahawk chopoff, and am meant to be getting the Condor Bush Cutlass soon:

http://www.knifecenter.com/kc_new/store ... =CN35622HC" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

You could do a review on your Kabar Kukri (if you haven't already).

I have enough favourites now, and good tools for specific jobs needed. The good thing about machetes is that for the price of a Busse you can get a lot, and when you look at how much people spend on their guns, imagine spending that on melee weapons/tools. (Note, if I was in a place where it was easy to get guns, I'd have a few, and less machetes).

zombicide_x
* * *
Posts: 526
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2006 2:50 pm
Location: The bad part of North Kansas City

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by zombicide_x » Wed Mar 30, 2011 3:31 am

silvermiketrate wrote:Image
Reminds me of the mass produced, half-assed, craptastic weapons the poor orcs were issued in The Lord of the Ring movies.

Red Tamarillo
* * *
Posts: 614
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:25 am
Location: Australia

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Red Tamarillo » Wed Mar 30, 2011 4:36 am

I can see that.
I got to see the exhibition in Wellington. A lot of useless detail like embroidering on the inside of costumes which never showed in any scene (i think they talk about stuff like that in the making of DVDs, but seeing it in person was very cool):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lord_o ... Exhibition" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

bit of a dated wiki page, so not sure where it ended up. Saw something on the tele the other day which had some of the stuff at the gift shop at Weta:

http://www.wetanz.com/cave/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Had another couple of thoughts re stuff lying around. I've got a couple of young nieces (who like playing with my torches) so can't leave anything pointy lying around. Plus anything you leave lying around including blunt objects can be used against you.

I wonder if someone has ever made a lockable kitchen knife block (as they're the most obvious nasty impromptu weapons lying around) i.e. that locks the knives in with a key?
A quick google only found child proof ones, which had buttons that needed to be pushed in on the sides to withdraw a knife, but no keys or padlocks.

One of the funniest Cold Steel videos has Lynn Thompson talking about the two handed sword as a weapon for street fights (in your middle class suburban gated community), and how one should keep it by the door. I took away a baseball bat stored near the door, as that can be the first place someone who's not meant to enter, enters.
I now keep a 4C maglite in the belt holder hanging from a coat hook hiding behind some jackets. It's easy to slip out of the official belt holder.

(Note, I'm only bagging Lynn T a little, as I like the fact that Cold Steel exists, it makes things more interesting. Another interesting company I can think of off the top of my head would be Condor. By interesting I mean companies that make a wide variety of stuff in different shapes, some a good idea, some not so good, but at least they're trying. It would be a very bland world with only 12" Ontarios in it).

User avatar
SaintPendulous
*
Posts: 32
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2011 11:17 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Dawn of the Dead, Shaun of the Dead, Zombie Land, All resident evils, and "The Walking Dead" TV series!!
Location: Council Bluffs, Iowa

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by SaintPendulous » Wed Mar 30, 2011 7:48 pm

Hellyeah, ColdSteel is the shit

I'm Totally Investing in a Brooklyn Smasher

http://www.coldsteel.com/brooklynsmasher.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
"We Shall Perservere"- Saint Pendulous

User avatar
TFC Rick
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 11:59 am
Location: Jville

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by TFC Rick » Thu Mar 31, 2011 1:34 pm

Hey guys, new guy here. I just got the Magnum Kukri Machete from Cold Steel and it's pretty cool. Handles general chopping tasks reasonably well. It's not to "clunky" for it's size either. The magnum is a 17" blade where the standard kukri machete is a 13". I actually thought I was getting the 13" but was pleasantly surprised by how well the 17" is balanced. Plus it's fun to throw.

I noticed in the OP that the black was removed from the cutting edge, was this for sharpening purposes?

Rick
Something witty goes here.

Red Tamarillo
* * *
Posts: 614
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:25 am
Location: Australia

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Red Tamarillo » Thu Mar 31, 2011 6:13 pm

Yeah, just off the edge bevel, to make it thinner.

User avatar
Sworbeyegib
* * * * *
Posts: 3361
Joined: Tue Jul 15, 2008 2:15 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: night of the living dead is what started it all for me
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Sworbeyegib » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:10 pm

The factory edge from cold steel machetes, really kind of sucks. It looks as if they put a general utility edge on their blade, and then dip it in the black coating, but don't resharpen it. I own a lot of their machetes, and on each one I spent a bit of time with a file reprofiling the blade, and removing all the coating and backing up that angle. Its makes a world of difference.

If I had a good slack belt sander, it would have taken me hardly anytime at all. But all I really needed was a file, a lansky puck, and a bit of time.
**Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don't**

Image

Mbaresu
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2020 4:40 pm

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by Mbaresu » Sun Jun 07, 2020 4:44 pm

Do u know where I can find a cold steel two handed machete or a handle for one?

User avatar
12_Gauge_Chimp
ZS Global Moderator
ZS Global Moderator
Posts: 7643
Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2009 4:21 pm
Location: Middle of nowhere, West Texas

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by 12_Gauge_Chimp » Sun Jun 07, 2020 5:30 pm

Mbaresu wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 4:44 pm
Do u know where I can find a cold steel two handed machete or a handle for one?
Welcome to ZS, Mbaresu. When you get a chance, please head over to the Introductions section and tell us a bit about yourself.

As for your question, you might check Midway USA or maybe Amazon for the Cold Steel two handed machetes or replacement handles. You might even want to contact Cold Steel directly and see if they can help you.

User avatar
jor-el
* * * * *
Posts: 5263
Joined: Sat Jan 15, 2005 3:42 am
Location: Watching over America

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by jor-el » Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:01 pm

Those things are molded on. You will have to develop your own from hardwood.
My son, you will travel far, but never be alone, for I am with you, my M14 and battle axe comfort you.

User avatar
jor-el
* * * * *
Posts: 5263
Joined: Sat Jan 15, 2005 3:42 am
Location: Watching over America

Re: Cold Steel two handed machetes review - all of them

Post by jor-el » Thu Jun 11, 2020 11:58 am

A website I can't find anymore showed how to add an extended handle to this to make it a more balanced 2 hand weapon

https://www.atlantacutlery.com/gigantic ... nial-kukri
My son, you will travel far, but never be alone, for I am with you, my M14 and battle axe comfort you.

Post Reply

Return to “Other Weapons”