A fillet knife is one of the tools you’re going to need when planning for your next fishing trip. What good is it to reel in the perfect catch if you can’t fillet and enjoy it immediately? There are many specialty knives, including Dexter Russell fillet knife series, to consider for your upcoming fishing trip.
Depending on the size of the fish you plan on reeling in, some knives are better for the journey. Apart from blade length, the grip and control are also relevant in your fillet knife decision.
Properly filleting a fish is half the process and accounts for half the enjoyment of reeling in a catch. So, you need the right fillet knife in your tackle box when preparing for your fishing trip.
Large fish like tuna or salmon require a longer blade length. Small fish, like crappie or bluegills, don’t need such a large knife. The ergonomic grip and handle control are also relevant in your fillet knife purchase decision.
Then, of course, there’s the personal attachment you feel with that knife. You are going to use it often, so you might as well choose one that will make the filleting process as comfortable as possible.
Whether you invest in one, or multiple fillet knives, it’s essential to choose the right blade for different fish. Here we’ll focus on all aspects of the filleting process to help you select the perfect knife for any task.
How to Choose Your Dexter Russell Fillet Knife
Dexter Russell manufactures a variety of fillet knives for filleting fish of all sizes. Several variables play into the decision-making process.
The blade and handle are two key factors consumers consider when selecting a fillet knife.
Fillet knives are available in lengths between 4 to 9 inches. Smaller fish like crappie or perch require a shorter blade. Anything below 7.5 inches is sufficient for these filleting tasks.
Salmon or pike, or larger fish, need a longer all-around knife. Any blade between 7.5 to 9 inches is usually the best option.
The products in the Dexter Russell fillet knife series incorporate the best of both worlds in manufacturing their products. Their fillet knives feature carbon and stainless steel. The manufacturer blends carbon and alloy stainless steel to create this material.
It reduces corrosion, improves sharpness, and allows the knife to maintain its edge better. Additionally, it reduces the frequency that owners have to sharpen the blade. All of these characteristics mean a more durable fillet knife that performs well in any situation.
About the Sani-Safe® product line
The Sani-Safe knife line has a textured and slip-resistant handle. It’s easy to clean, and the polypropylene finish can withstand temperature extremes well.
The manufacturer produces these knives in the USA. And they feature an NSF logo meaning they meet the strictest sanitation standards.
Average Price of a Dexter Russell Fillet Knife
Although the products in the Dexter Russell fillet knife series are some of the best in the industry, they are also affordable.
Most fillet knives are $15 to $100. Consumers can also purchase them from sites like Amazon or eBay for lower prices than directly from the manufacturer’s website.
Our Review Process: Dexter Russell Series vs. Competitors
We compared the best Dexter Russell fillet knife options against other fillet knives from top competitors. The usability, grip, and blade length were three primary focal points in our review. A sanitary blade and handle were also crucial in the review process.
Our reviewers considered the edge retention, sharpness, and corrosion resistance of each knife. Since owners are using them around salt and fresh water, our comparison focuses on blades that are rust-resistance.
Last, we include prices and average ratings for each fillet knife. Comparing reputable brands and material finish allows consumers to choose the best fillet knife for personal use.
Which Dexter Russell Fillet Knife Is Right for You?
Dexter Russell specializes in quality fillet knives. These are some of the best varieties the company manufactures for fresh and saltwater fishing.
Dexter Russell UR-Cut 7″ Fillet Knife Moldable Handle 25413 UC133-7
The 7-inch fillet knife features a narrow blade. This blade length makes the task of filleting and skinning fish quick and efficient. A Sofgrip handle is soft to the grip and conforms naturally to the user’s hands.
The DEXSTEEL blade finish is a combination of stainless and carbon steels. The result is a durable blade that won’t corrode or rust as quickly as other blades.
The company manufactures the knife in the USA, and it features an NSF Certification, so owners know it is safe for sanitary use anywhere.
The moldable grip handle conforms to the owner’s hand and grip style. It’s perfect for individuals who prefer using their left or right hand for filleting. It also includes a sheath for storage when owners aren’t using the fillet knife.
Consumers love the sharp blade and how well the knife retains its edge. The only possible drawback is the short blade length. However, for smaller fish, this shouldn’t be a concern for most owners.
The 7-inch Dexter Russell fillet knife is $15 to $25. The average rating is 5.0 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
Dexter Russell SofGrip 8″ Tiger Edge Slicer 24293 SG142-8
This coated Dexter Russell knife can withstand the toll that saltwater often places on fillet knives. In addition to the coating, it has a serrated bait cutter. It’s capable of cutting through fresh and frozen bait.
The knife has a Sofgrip handle, making it extremely comfortable to grip while filleting. The DEXSTEEL blade is capable of filleting, skinning, and boning large fish, with the long 8-inch length.
The blade retains it’s edge well, meaning owners won’t have to sharpen it frequently. The Sofgrip handle won’t move in the hands while filleting fish. So even in wet conditions, it’s safe for use anywhere.
There is also a seal between the blade and the handle of this knife, which prevents bacteria from building up and guarantees the highest levels of sanitation for filleting fish. A superior edge is perfect for slicing and dicing fish of varying lengths.
One reviewer indicates the knife is excellent and the price is unbeatable. A sharp blade that retains its edge well and durable finish makes this the perfect fillet knife. Another reviewer indicates this product began pitting on both sides. This design flaw detracts from the quality of the fillet knife.
Consumers will pay $20 to $35 for the 8-inch Dexter Russell fillet knife. The average rating is 4.7 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
The Dexter Russell Sani-Safe 9″ Fillet Knife 10243 S133-9
This knife also features the proprietary DEXSTEEL material finish like other Dexter Russell fillet knives. The combination of carbon and alloy stainless steel helps preserve the blade’s edge. It also ensures the knife’s blade isn’t going to rust or corrode in saltwater conditions.
The blade retains it’s sharpness, so owners don’t have to resharpen it frequently. A Sani-Safe handle is the most sanitary in the marketplace, featuring the NSF certification.
A 9-inch blade length and 5-inch handle length ensure even balance for filleting. The longer blade is also perfect for large fish like salmon or boning fish.
A narrower and thinner design than other knives from Dexter provides seamless mobility when filleting. It makes slicing and skinning fish quick and efficient as well.
A razor-sharp blade that retains its edge well are some characteristics one reviewer likes about this fillet knife. The only minor review one customer has is that the steel blade isn’t very elastic. So the edge doesn’t return to its natural shape, which can make skinning fish a little challenging.
The 9-inch fillet knife costs $20 to $40. The average rating is 4.8 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
The Best Competitor’s Fillet Knives
Although a Dexter Russell fillet knife is a great product, there are other competitors to consider as well. These are some of the top fillet knives available from leading industry competitors.
Dalstrong Gladiator Series 7” fillet knife
This fillet knife includes two sheaths, and it features German HC (high carbon) steel. It’s excellent for de-scaling, boning, filleting, trimming, and butterflying fish.
It has a 1.5-millimeter thick blade, making it highly maneuverable. The lightweight finish also ensures owners can efficiently mobilize when filleting fish using this knife. A full-tang design features a 14 to 16-degree edge on either side of the blade.
The fillet knife uses flexible blade technologies. It returns to its position with each stroke of the knife. The pakkawood handle has a triple-riveted design ensuring a comfortable grip handle.
It also features a 56+ Rockwell Hardness rating. The knife is wear, corrosion, and rust resistant. So, owners can take it on fresh or saltwater fishing trips safely.
One customer indicates they like the even balance and weight distribution of this fillet knife. The flexible design and ergonomic grip handle make it easy to use for all fish and filleting scenarios. In another review, however, the customer indicates the blade isn’t as sharp as the manufacturer claims.
The Dalstrong knife is $50 to $70. The average rating is 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
WÜSTHOF Grand Prix II 9 Inch Fillet Knife with Leather Sheath
The fillet knife features a high carbon stainless steel blade. It’s rust and corrosion resistant, meaning owners can use it on fresh or saltwater fish. It also has a full-bolster design.
The knife features a finger guard to help prevent injuries when slicing and filleting fish. Precision edge (PEtec) technology helps maintain the blade’s sharpness while minimizing the frequency of sharpening.
The fillet knife comes with a black leather sheath. The black propylene handle is sanitary and conforms to the owner’s natural grip. It’s slip resistant, meaning it is safe to use in wet outdoor conditions.
The PEtec technology helps maintain a sharper blade without having to sharpen it as often as traditional blades. It remains approximately 20 percent sharper than a standard knife and fillet blades.
One reviewer likes how super sharp the knife is. They also appreciate the finger guard and optimal levels of control with the ergonomic grip handle. The only possible drawback is the high price of this fillet knife. Owners of this product did not leave any negative feedback about it online.
WÜSTHOF’s fillet knife is $80 to $100. The average rating is 5.0 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
Bubba Blade 9-inch Stiff Fillet Knife
This fillet knife features a full-tang design and a stainless steel blade. The nonstick blade makes it easy to fillet, slice, and dice fish quickly and efficiently.
It includes a sheath for storage when the knife isn’t in use. The overall length is 15 inches. A non-slip grip handle increases security and safety for users when filleting fish or game with this knife.
There are safety guards throughout different points of this knife, and the design protects the blade and spines of fish. The 8Cr13MoV blade is extremely thin. It allows owners to maneuver fish or wild game quickly.
It also has a Ti-Nitride (Titanium Nitride) coating on the knife. The blade is rust and corrosion resistant as well. For hands-free carrying, the sheath comes with a belt clip for this knife, so owners can free up their hands when they’re not using it.
The only cons weren’t related to the blade itself, keeping this knife’s rating near perfect. The Bubba Blade is $30 to $50. The average rating is 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
Best Overall Knife and the Best Budget-Friendly Variety
There are countless varieties of filleting knives to choose from for your next fishing trip. However, not all of them are going to produce the same results.
For those who want an affordable fillet knife, a Dexter Russell fillet knife is a good choice. The Dexter Russell SofGrip 8″ Tiger Edge Slicer is not only affordable but it is also resistant to rust and corrosion.
It has a large blade making it simple to scale, fillet, and slice. It has a non-stick blade as well for quick and effortless mobility. The lightweight and narrow blade makes the task of filleting simple for even beginners and novice users alike.
The WÜSTHOF 9-inch fillet blade is the best overall knife. It is the most expensive, but it features the best material finishes throughout the blade and spine. It’s lightweight and has a durable, nonslip grip. The sanitary blade and rust-resistant finish also allow owners to use it in saltwater conditions.
Plus, it comes with a sheath for storage. The PEtec technology is another great feature that sets the knife apart. By preserving the blade’s sharpness, you don’t have to resharpen the knife as often, leaving you with a sharp blade at the ready for every single catch.
Do you plan to buy a Dexter Russel fillet knife or one of the other brands featured in our review? Let us know in the comment section!