How to Baton Wood With a Knife

How to Baton Wood With a Knife
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Batoning wood is a common bushcraft/survival technique in which a strong knife.

The technique can be used to split wood.

I am showing it here because it is a good technique and useful and is necessary to know to get to my next post – which is basic spoon carving.

How to Baton Wood


  • A knife with a strong spine.  My USMC issued Ka-Bar is perfect
  • A baton (I used a stout piece of limb – which is also perfect)
  • Something to split


  • All you need to do is to set the log to be split up on its cut end so it stands vertically.
  • Next, the knife blade onto the log so that the blade is orientated where you want the split to occur.
  • Hold the knife handle and tap the spine of the blade smartly and evenly with the baton.
  • Finally, the blade will be driven into the log and a split will develop.

Similarly as using a froe to make shakes (split roofing shingles), you can turn the knife handle to cause the knife to exert pressure into or away from the split to make the split thicker or thinner (this takes some experience).

Do You Really Need to Baton Wood?

Bladeforums has an interesting discussion on the situations in which you would actually need to baton wood.


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