The Helle Fjellkniven from Homedal, Norway, has a nearly four inch long blade made from a carbon steel core laminated between two layers of stainless steel, which results in an 1/8 inch thick spine.
The knife, which weighs slightly less than four ounces, has a stick tang that goes all the way through an attractive handle of curly birch that is slightly more than four inches long.
The Helle Fjellkniven is designed to be an all-purpose belt knife. The drop-point blade has a Scandinavian style grind, which is short and flat. It comes with a leather sheath.
The knife’s thin blade and “Scandia” edge makes it an excellent choice for processing game and light bush crafting tasks.
The blade’s carbon core provides the cutting edge, which performed well in a variety of outdoor tasks. The polished stainless steel outer layers protected the core from corrosion, which combined the best characteristics of both carbon and stainless steels.
The excellent factory edge retained its sharpness well and was easy to restore after much use.
The curly birch handle was attractive to the eye and capped with a stainless steel bolster along its face. The handle was comfortable to use in a variety of grips and felt sure even when wet.
Unfortunately, it is not long enough to be effective for those with large hands. Although a stick tang may be a traditional design choice, it is weaker than a full tang design, which limits the uses for the knife.
The pouch style sheath is also attractive and matches the look of the knife. Of course, leather is difficult to keep sanitary after much use, and this particular sheath didn’t have a drain hole. Leather can also retain moisture, which would corrode even stainless steel if unchecked.
The sheath did not come with a welt, but the shaping of the leather seemed to do an adequate job to protect the stitching from the blade edge. Its design and quality manufacturing make it a good match for the knife in the traditional sense.
We were impressed when testing the Helle Fjellkniven. It did a remarkable job in processing game, bush crafting and camp tasks.
The laminated steel blade and wood handle performed well.
Our biggest problem was the relatively short handle, which may not be an issue for some owners with medium or small hands.
Helle Fjellkniven is an excellent product for a reasonably moderate price. It is made in a traditional Scandinavian style and performs well. It has some shortcomings, but they are small compared to the overall value of the tool.
We definitely plan on testing some of the other knife models that Helle has to offer with larger handles.
Kim Quintin is a Saskatoon outdoor enthusiast and knife maker. He can be reached for column suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org or 306-665-9687.