What a Latin-style Machete is Best Used For
When you imagine a machete, you most likely picture what is the Latin-style machete. This type of machete has become synonymous with various movies and television shows, with its easily defined shape and long blade length. It is fair to say that the Latin-style machete is your prototypical machete.
With that being said, every machete style has its own strengths and weaknesses. Tasks that it was specifically designed to handle and excel at — the Latin-style machete being no different.
The Design of a Latin-style Machete
Latin-style machetes are constructed with high-carbon steel blades that normally range in length between 12 and 28 inches. The blade shape is rather narrow, gradually widening as it comes to a slightly curved-back tip at the end. These machetes typically feature a blade width between 2 and 3 millimeters.
The artistry of the machete is how it’s evenly weighted and stout. Latin-style machetes are meant to have a rather simple and straightforward profile and retain a lightweight body for continual use throughout the day. Even the largest-sized Latin-style machetes remain under a total weight of 2 pounds.
Where The Latin-style or Bushcraft Machete Comes From
Latin-style machetes are believed to have originated from Latin America, where these straight, long-bladed tools were used primarily for cutting through dense forest vegetation and harvesting field crops.
The popularity and functionality that the Latin-style machetes afforded users made it spread quickly throughout the Southern Hemisphere, where it reached the Caribbean and African countries. There is was commonly used as a household and agricultural tool, as well as a weapon of choice for militias.
What a Latin-style Machete Excels At
Because of its easy-to-use and lightweight design, the machete excels at being a tool that can be used to chop, cut, and slash over and over again without tiring the user. In addition, its simple blade shape makes it a machete that can be leveraged for a variety of tasks. For many, it serves as an ax, shovel, cutting knife, and much more.
Splitting Wood and Kindling
Latin-style machetes are an outdoorsmen’s best friend in more ways than one, but especially when it comes to splitting wood and kindling. The long blade makes it a valuable tool for splitting small-to-medium-sized logs into multiple sections. For thicker logs, use a stone to help push greater force on the blade and through the hull of the log.
In the kitchen, machetes are great for those foods with a thick shell or tough outer skin, like coconuts, watermelons, pineapples, and more. In Latin America, they’re often used to cut the hard roots of plants like yuca, beets, potatoes, and more.
Latin-style machetes also make for a possible makeshift shovel. The long, flat blade design enables users to dig the tip into the ground and shovel out soil, sand, and any other sediment.
To do this, hold the machete with both hands at the handle, and once the tip is dug into the soil, push the handle towards the ground to dislodge the dirt.
The Latin-style machete is a master at clearing overgrown brush and vegetation. From eliminating overgrown landscape, to crafting a path to your favorite fishing hole, the lightweight nature of the Latin-style machete makes it a maneuverable tool in a variety of dense vegetation scenarios.
For anyone handling crops, this machete can be an invaluable tool to your trade. This is especially true for the crops where people may need to hand-harvest or eliminate invasive plants infringing on planted crops. Latin-style machetes have been used for centuries to cut crops such as sugar cane, corn, rice, buckwheat, and oats.
Latin-Style Machetes You Should Consider
Having a Latin-style machete at your disposal is never a bad idea. The versatility and reliability of the blade make it a solid investment for nearly any homeowner, outdoorsmen, or agriculturalist. Here at Machete Specialists, these are three of our favorite bushcraft machetes in stock.
Tramontina 14-inch Bush Machete
The Tramontina is a 19″ Brazilian Bush Machete, featuring a 14″ blade. It has a solid, natural wood color handle, and an SAE 1070 high carbon steel blade. A factory primary grind is established on the blade and will require additional sharpening. This short, compact Latin-style machete makes for an all-around good choice for any project — a great introduction into the world of Latin-style blades.
Ontario 18-inch Military Jungle Machete
This American-made, 18″ bladed machete has a high-impact, shatterproof polymer handle for extra heavy-duty work. Totaling just over 23″, this Latin-style machete is a workhorse, ready for any environment. With an extra-thick, 3.4 mm blade width, this machete holds additional striking force capability.
Imacasa 22-inch Chumpa Machete
The Imacasa Chumpa is a 27″ machete with a 22″ blade. It’s slightly weighted and is made with a 1075 high carbon steel blade. The long length, combined with lighter weight makes it a Latin-style machete that doesn’t wear out the user, while still having great reach and power. This particular machete is a fan favorite of land surveyors
Find The Right Latin-style Machete For You
If you’re looking for a quality Latin-style machete to be your constant companion on your next excursion, browse our wide selection of blades at Machete Specialist. We offer a huge range of machetes that are crafted by some of the biggest names in the industry. Our Latin-style machetes come in a variety of sizes and price ranges, meant to provide you with the perfect blade for your needs.