What do camping and the zombie apocalypse have in common? In either case, you’ll appreciate having the Kershaw Camp 10 handy. Why? With the size and weight of the blade, you’ll be able to clear brush, make kindling, and possibly split the heads of the ravenous undead.
Granted, this camping knife will probably find much more use on the trail than it will in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, but it’s nice to know that this blade is versatile.
Out Of The Box
Kershaw has a previous iteration of this knife, the Camp 10, but it only came in black. This time around, they’ve explored a bit more of the color spectrum by introducing the Kershaw Camp 10 Tan. The differences between the two models seem negligible with the main difference revolving around the handle and sheath color. For what it’s worth, the tan option is a handsome one.
Is It A Knife Or Machete?
Admittedly, it’s a little hard to tell as it falls somewhere in between. At an overall 16″, with a 10″ blade, it finds a really sweet spot between knife and machete. Its length keeps it maneuverable for your cutting and scraping applications and it feels less cumbersome than strapping your typical machete to your side. But with a total weight of 1lb, 2.3 oz, and a thick spine, its heft allows you to clear, split, and chop as well.
The blade on the Kershaw Camp 10 Tan, like the black Camp 10, utilizes a full-tang, modified drop-point blade with a belly for better chopping. It looks similar to a bolo knife.
Kershaw uses a 65 mn carbon tool steel, which lends itself more toward the high-impact, durable end of the application spectrum. With its medium-high carbon content, this steel grade provides good wear resistance and hardness. Practically, what this amounts to is a blade that you might not use when you need surgical precision, but will excel at both giving and taking a beating.
Corrosion resistance can be an issue for this type of steel, but Kershaw powder coats the blade to protect it from rust. Like other anti-corrosion coatings, it’s not terribly thick and you can scratch through it without too much effort. Just store the knife in its sheath and give it a thin coat of oil from time to time and you’ll be fine.
The Kershaw Camp 10 Tan features a hard, ABS-type handle that has a palm swell in the middle of the handle. Wrapped around that hard plastic is a firm, checkered-texture rubber overmolding, which provides some solid slip resistance for sweaty hands. It also provides some impact absorption for when you need to hack into denser woods. Ultimately, the Camp 10 is comfortable to hold with or without gloves as the reasonably narrow handle contours pretty naturally to your hand.
It has a solid build that feels well-assembled. The handle feels sturdy and both pieces flush up to each other nicely. You shouldn’t expect a full-tang blade to exhibit any wobble in relation to the handle and you’ll be pleased to know that’s not the case here, either. Everything about the Kershaw Camp 10 feels like it can stand up to some heavy use.
The Kershaw Camp 10 Tan comes with a glass-filled nylon sheath. From a construction standpoint, Kershaw uses metal grommets to hold the sheath together. It has a water drain near the tip to keep moisture from hanging out inside. The whole package feels durable, and not particularly prone to separation.
The sheath has a security strap that wraps over the finger guards on the handle and secures the knife in place with a thumb snap. Unfortunately, this strap isn’t easily reversible, but it shouldn’t present too much of an issue with a Phillip’s head screwdriver handy.
It also comes with a couple hook and loop (AKA Velcro) belt straps that you can reposition to your liking. By swapping around these straps, you can carry the Kershaw Camp 10 Tan higher or lower on the left or right hip. Additionally, these straps allow you to attach the knife to a pack, bag, or trail box.
Finally, for those of you who value your tethering options, the Kershaw Camp 10 Tan has two points to attach a lanyard. Kershaw has helpfully drilled a hole at the butt of the handle, as well as at the top of the handle in between the finger guards.
Right now on the Kershaw website, the Camp 10 Tan retails for $38.24. Of course, you can find deals in the $38 range online, which is obviously better. Given the quality of the workmanship, the steel used for the blade, and the general design, the Kershaw Camp 10 Tan presents a really solid value for the money. As with any Kershaw product, you can send it back to the factory for resharpening if you need to.
The Bottom Line
Versatility is really the name of the game with the Kershaw Camp 10 Tan Machete/Survival Knife/Bush Knife/Bolo Knife. Not only does it provide the necessary heft for clearing, chopping, and splitting, but the design allows for more delicate cutting tasks up toward the handle. The build feels solid and durable, and the knife is comfortable to hold onto, even with sweaty hands. All of this will undoubtedly come in handy the next time you need to cobble together a workable shelter in the backwoods, or when you need to drive off hordes of flesh-eating zombies.
Kershaw Camp 10 Tan Machete Features
- Full-tang construction
- Textured, rubberized grip
- Includes glass-filled nylon sheath with belt loop
- Dual lanyard holes
Kershaw Camp 10 Tan Machete Specs
- Model Number: Kershaw 1077TAN
- Steel: 65Mn, powder coat
- Handle: Rubber overmold
- Blade Length: 10 in. (25.4 cm)
- Overall Length: 16 in. (40.6 cm)
- Weight: 1 lb. 2.3 oz. (521 g)
- Weight with Sheath: 1 lb. 8 oz. (681 g)
- Price: $38.24 (Amazon)