Rapala Fillet Knife Review 2023

Sergio Smirnoff

Hello, my name is Sergio Smirnof, and my goal with FishReeler is to provide a valuable resource for anglers of all levels, from beginners to experienced veterans. I hope that my passion for fishing and dedication to the sport shines through in the content I create and inspires others to get out on the water and catch some fish!

Banner RAPALA Fillet Knives

Top 9 Choices Rapala Fillet Knifes: Reviews & Comparisons

typical filet knives

If you are an avid angler you certainly cannot do without a good fillet knife. Filleting fishes is normally a pretty messy process. So you definitely need a convenient and reliable knife with a razor-sharp blade and grippy handle. A fillet knife is a special knife used for skinning, folding, de-boning, and filleting fishes. Fillet knife blades are usually 6 to 11 inches long. This allows you to move them easily along the spine and under the skin or the meat.

Longer blades are the best for filleting big fishes such as salmon and tuna. Standard size blades are appropriate for filleting the average size fish. Fillet knives are convenient for filleting both saltwater and fresh fish.  They are not intended for preparing sushi as special sushi or sashimi knives are used for these purposes. Also, you will need a pair of fish tweezers to remove tiny bones from the fish and scissors to get rid of the fins.

Fillet Knives Blades

Most fillet knives are equipped with a trailing point blade made for filleting and skinning. The back edge of a  blade curves upwards smoothly from the handle to the tip. The large width of the trailing point blade makes it perfect for precise cuts.

great design and material

Materials for Fillet Knives

Most fillet knife blades are made of various stainless steel. Since these knives are mostly used in water, they are often covered with chromium making them corrosion-resistant. Also, it prevents pitting corrosion so the knife blade always remains smooth and easy to clean. The blades are normally present medium hardness which gives them moderate edge retention and ensures extra flexibility.

Knife Handles

Filleting fishes normally is a messy process. This can pose a certain risk, as a slippery knife affects your control. You definitely don’t want to lose control when operating an extremely sharp blade. This is why the type of knife handle is very important.

Handles generally come in four types:

  • Wooden
  • Plastic
  • Rubber
  • Pitted metal

Wooden handles can become slippery during work. Also, low-quality wooden handles can soak up the smell of fish over time.

Plastic knife handles are less slippery than wooden ones, but still can be an issue. In respect of odor, they are less likely than wooden ones to soak up smells, but certain odors can be retained inside the seams.

Rubber handles normally are most firm in the hand and allow the least chance of slippage. They can retain some smell, but the lack of seams makes knives easier to clean.

Knife handles with pitted surface do impart some grip, but less than rubber ones. However, they retain no odor and are quite easy to clean.

folding knives

Fillet Knife Types

Fillet knives come in various types according to work purposes. They can be of various sizes depending on the small or big fish you are going to fillet. Also, filleting knives can be classified as per different methods of use:

  • Folding
  • Skinning
  • De-boning
  • Fillet
  • Multi-purpose

There are also filleting sets of units including peeler knives, filleting knives, deep blade cooks knives, palette knives, slicers, forks, and other tools. Besides the knives can be classified as:

  • Plain fillet knives
  • Electric fillet knives (with cord or cordless)

The 9 Best Rapala Fillet Knifes – Editor’s Choice

complete fisherman kit

1# Rapala Folding Fish Pro Fillet Knife

Rapala Folding Fish Pro Fillet Knife

View on Bassproshops

Rapala Folding Fish Pro Fillet Knife is ideal for outdoor and campsite fish cleaning due to its convenient lock-back design. It makes preparing your catch for the table a quick and easy process in any location. A large folding-blade pocket knife is equipped with a quality flexible tapered blade made of premium hand-ground Japanese steel. The polished blade retains razor-sharp throughout the skinning, cutting, deboning, and filleting process. The ergonomic handle has an extended safety guard to ensure a firm grip. The blade ensures an easy release for instant access and folds safely into the handle when not in use. This Rapala Filleting Knife is your confident and true friend in any fishing adventure.

  • Convenient folding to the compact size

  • Perfect size for a wide variety of cleaning fish on the go

  • Easily cuts through bone structure and tough skin.

  • Ideal balance, reliable handle grip

  • Easy release for quick access

  • Progressive taped flexible blade

  • Super sharp cutting edge

  • Made of hand-ground Japanese steel

  • Ergonomic handle with extended protection

  • Reasonable price

  • The knife doesn’t stay sharp for a long time

2# Rapala Fish’n Fillet Knives Classic

Rapala Fish'n Fillet Knives Classic

View on Bassproshops

This multi-functional Rapala Fish ‘n Fillet Knife is a compact and classical designed model. The knife is equipped with a hand-ground European stainless-steel blade with a flexible tip. The convenient well-forced handle is made of varnished birch which ensures a good hand grip. This Rapala knife is always easy to keep on you since it comes with a genuine leather sheath.  The knife is also completed with Rapala single-stage sharpener to keep the blade razor-sharp at all times. Nothing extra, just a perfect kit for your ideal fishing and camping. Definitely worth its price.

  • Ease of use

  • Great style and design

  • Hand-ground stainless steel blade

  • Forced varnished birch handle

  • Razor-sharp and flexible blade

  • Extra-durable model

  • Includes genuine leather

  • Includes single-stage sharpener

  • Value for its money

  • Great customers reviews

  • Pretty poor finishing

  • Low performance

3# Rapala Soft Grip Fillet Knife

Rapala Soft Grip Fillet Knife

View on Bassproshops

This Rapala Soft Grip Fillet Knife is equipped with the unique Rapala stainless steel flexible but sturdy blade which endures sharp precision while working.  The razor-sharp blade has an extra backbone on the lower end, facilitating cutting through fish bones and skin. The flexible blade tip ensures surgical precision and extra detailed work. The knife provides you with an enlarged finger guard for a safe hold.

Awesome knife for filleting perch and other middle-sized fish. Highly recommended. The small size is great for making the turn by the gill plate. The fillet almost jumps off the fish skin. The knife is fitted with a soft-grip non-slip, textured handle. It gives you maximum comfort and control while working. The kit also includes a sheath that neatly fits on your belt and a single-stage sharpener to always keep your Rapala knife at peak sharpness and performance. A really good choice — maximal efficiency and performance at a very reasonable price.

  • Unique stainless steel blade design

  • The extra backbone for easy cutting through skin and bones

  • Flexible tip for precise works

  • Comfortable fit-grip non-slip handle

  • Ensures maximum control and comfort while filleting

  • Includes sheath and sharpener

  • Reasonable price

  • Great customers reviews

  • Might be a bit small for larger fish

  • The handle is not sealed around the blade

4# Rapala Lithium Ion Cordless Fillet Knife

Rapala Lithium Ion Cordless Fillet Knife

View on Bassproshops

Rapala Lithium Ion Cordless Fillet Knife is probably the most advanced and powerful cordless fillet knife ever. It provides a full eighty minutes of non-stop run time with no loss of power. A low memory effect increases the number of possible charge-discharge cycles.

You can’t say enough good about this knife! If you catch a lot of rockfish (rod cod or sea bass) with extremely tough skin, you will definitely need it. No more various knives for cleaning and filleting. Rapala knife would do the best job in under a couple of minutes and it’s far safer. Just get the Rapala with the lithium-on battery and enjoy your fishing without getting tangled up in electric cords.

Lithium-ion batteries provide a constant speed and torque from fish to fish without reduced power or slow down. This produces 80 continuous minutes of run-time per battery. The lithium-ion cordless Rapala knife is equipped with a 7.5″ reciprocating blade. A comfortable grip ensures long fatigue-free work.  A special airflow body design keeps the engine running cool and smooth for a long time. The Combo kit includes a cordless knife, two lithium-Ion batteries, 6″ and 7.5″ reciprocating style blades, wall charger, all packed into a convenient EVA padded storage case.

  • A full 80 minutes of non-stop run time without loss of power

  • Low memory effect

  • Includes 6″ and 7.5″ reciprocating blades

  • Comfortable grip for fatigue-free work

  • Airflow body design keeps the engine cooling

  • No tangled cords

  • Good speed

  • Sharp blades

  • Great balance in the hand

  • Includes 2 lithium-ion batteries and wall charger

  • The blades do not stay locked in place while in use

  • The knife is not nearly powerful enough to fillet larger fish

5# Rapala Electric Travel Fillet Knife

Rapala Electric Travel Fillet Knife

View on Bassproshops

This knife is perfect for walleye and similar big fish. It works pretty quietly compared to other electric knives and it doesn’t heat too much. Works well with battery or electricity. The knife is powerful and has the ability to run off 120V or 12V.

The knife is extremely versatile. You can run it from a wall outlet, a cigarette lighter port from your car or quad or boat. Or you can use the clips to connect it to any 12-volt battery. The features you’ll like the most are the extra-long cord and two different size sets of blades. Compact, easy to carry and use.

This sturdy Rapala Electric Travel Fillet Knife is equipped with a quiet but powerful motor with an advanced airflow design. It allows making quick work of any filleting task. Simply plug into any wall outlet, connect to trolling motor battery posts, or boat lighter outlet for filleting in the field, and enjoy your fishing adventures.

  • Advanced quiet powerful motor

  • Airflow design

  • Interchangeable 6″ and 7.5″ reciprocating blades

  • AC/DC operation

  • 12V lighter plug and 18″ power cord

  • Fits in a compact travel case

  • Includes adaptors for 10V AC, 12V post clips

  • The trigger occasionally gets stuck

  • The converter box allowing it to be used with an outlet provides a decrease in power

6# Rapala Lithium-Ion Cordless Fillet Knife Combo

Rapala Lithium-Ion Cordless Fillet Knife Combo

View on Bassproshops

This Rapala Lithium-Ion Cordless Fillet Knife Combo demonstrates plenty of power and it’s really sharp. You won’t lose any meat using this device, it’s cutting just as clean as a regular fillet knife and you can fillet in a fraction of the time. This Rapala cordless is also very handy. The runtime on the batteries is excellent. Blades are sharp and do a great job. The knife is powerful and smooth. Probably the best ion knife on the market.

The Rapala Lithium-Ion Cordless Fillet Knife Combo ensures  80 minutes of continuous full power. And it makes preparing your catch for the table an efficient quick process. The knife is powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, which constantly holds full speed and torque throughout its runtime.

The ergonomic handle fits comfortably in your hand, providing a secure grip. The unique body design distributes airflow to keep the motor cooling.  All-in-one system includes cordless knife body, 6″ and 7.5″ reciprocating blades, two batteries, 110V wall charger, and EVA-padded travel case.

  • Allows to clean your catch quickly and efficiently

  • Ensures 80 minutes of non-stop full power

  • Holds full speed and torque throughout the charge

  • 6″ and 7.5″ reciprocating blades cover a wide range of fishes

  • Easy-to-grip comfortable handle

  • The air-cooling system keeps the motor cool

  • Includes 2 rechargeable lithium-ion batteries

  • The set contains a 110V wall charger

  • Packed into EVA-padded travel case

  • Great customers ratings

  • The safety button is so tiny and difficult to move onto and off safety

  • Pretty high price

7# Rapala Rechargeable Electric Fillet Knife

Rapala Rechargeable Electric Fillet Knife

View on Bassproshops

Rapala Deluxe Cordless Fillet Knife makes even the hardest filleting tasks quick and easy work. It’s equipped with 2 removable rechargeable battery packs providing an ample power source to complete any job. Premium motor provides years of service in the field, camping, or at home for filleting and other cutting works.

The knife is equipped with a quiet long-lasting motor and advanced airflow handle to reduce heating.  There’s no need for cables or adapters due to the versatile charger allowing to charge one battery while you put the other to use. One battery can be fully charged in 3 hours and 45 minutes. The kit includes 6″ and 7.5″ reciprocating style blades. The whole set is packed into a compact carrying case. You can easily take it with you everywhere.

  • Advanced airflow design reduces heating

  • Interchangeable 6″ and 7.5″ blades

  • Each battery lasts for 30 minutes

  • The battery takes about 3.5 hours to recharge

  • The versatile charger charges one battery while you use the other

  • Includes 2 rechargeable battery packs, battery charger, and long power cord

  • Packed into the handy compact travel case

  • The trigger is a sharp-edged little button that is hard to keep depressed while using the knife

  • The batteries have a pretty short lifespan

8# Rapala Electric Fillet Knife and Fork

Rapala Electric Fillet Knife and Fork

View on Bassproshops

This Rapala Electric Fillet Knife comes with a fillet fork, which helps to securely hold your catch while filleting. It’s a great combo for easy filleting. The fork has durable stainless steel prongs. This fillet knife has a quietly working long-lasting motor. Advanced airflow design keeps the engine cool. The knife is equipped with hand-ground stainless steel 7” blade and a comfortable 6” handle.  7 foot 110V power cord gives you much space to work.

Rapala Electric Fillet Knife and Fork is a very good knife, especially at this price. The knife is powerful and the blades are very sharp. The fork is very useful when cutting the fillet all the way off the tail. It helps to keep your fingers away from the knife blade. It’s a really great idea. You’ll also definitely appreciate the extra-long chord.

  • 5-inch reciprocating blades

  • Long-lasting motor with advanced airflow design

  • Hand-ground stainless steel blade

  • Includes fillet fork with stainless steel prongs making the fillet process easier

  • Includes 7 foot 110V power cord

  • Great customers reviews

  • Reasonable price

  • Blade release button in the wrong place

  • The switch (on/off) is pretty hard to operate

9# Rapala Heavy-Duty Electric Fillet Knife

Rapala Heavy-Duty Electric Fillet Knife

View on Bassproshops

Rapala Heavy-Duty Electric Fillet Knife is a monster among electric fillet knives and probably the best model that Rapala has to offer. The motor is really powerful and doesn’t get hot after continuous use. The knife is that good, that you have to learn to be delicate because you will cut right through the backbone.

The blades move very fast and the handle is large enough and ergonomic. This is one of the best electric fish knives ever and you can get additional size blades for it. You can sharpen knives with a diamond round file and blades last forever. This Rapala  Electric Fillet Knife from Rapala delivers the utmost power for maximum control when filleting even the biggest fish.

It demonstrates twice the blade speed and 3 times the power of standard electric fillet knives. With more than enough power to easily cut through rib bones and backbones, this knife makes fast work of salmon, trout, walleye, and other large fish. A comfortable ergonomic grip makes filleting fish without any effort. The 7.5″ reciprocating blades are dishwasher-safe. An advanced airflow body design dampens motor vibration and keeps the engine running cool.  An 8′ power cord provides plenty of reach for any kind of job. Highly recommend!

  • Quiet long-lasting engine

  • Twice the speed and three times the power of standard electric fillet knives

  • Made of the highest quality material

  • Heavy-duty motor

  • Advanced airflow cooling design

  • 5″ reciprocating blades

  • Dishwasher safe blades

  • Good customers ratings

  • The blades are way too thick and not flexible enough

  • Way too much vibration


We hope this short guide will help you to make the right choice among Rapala filleting knives. All of them are really good in different ways and you just need to pick your knife according to your specific requirements. Good luck!

Tags: #best rapala fillet knife / #rapala fillet knife review / #rapala electric fillet knife / #rapala cordless fillet knife / #rapala fish’n fillet knife / #rapala lithium ion cordless fillet knife / #rapala superflex fillet knife review

reliable fisherman knives

Sergio Smirnoff
Sergio Smirnoff
Professional fisherman with 40+ years of experience.
Fishing and the ocean is a passion of my life. I am passionate about all kinds of sea fishing: fishing from the shore (spinning, float, baitcasting), from a boat, and spearfishing day and night.

I live in Tenerife (Canary Islands) for the last 10+ years and share my daily fishing experiences on my website. Many years of personal experience as a fisherman and the vast experience of my friends allow me to write professionally on any fishing topics (from choosing a flashlight and equipment to deep-sea fishing).

All of my advice is based on practical real-world experience and will be useful to both novice anglers and professionals. Read more about the author.

Affiliate Disclosure: FishReeler.com sometimes gets paid for listings, through sponsors or affiliate programs like Amazon, Ebay, Cabelas, Bass Pro Shop, Shimano, Daiwa, Rapala, Renn, Okuma, KastKing, etс. Clicking a link helps keep FishReeler.com free, at no extra cost to you!

About the author: Each article is verified by the fishing expert Sergio Smirnoff. The articles are written by professional and amateur fishermen with 20+ years of fishing experience.

Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any agency. The articles are for informational purposes only, share your opinions in the comments and join the fishing discussions, let's share our fishing experiences together!

5 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Tamboro Nardinia
Tamboro Nardinia
2 months ago

I’ve had my fair share of experiences with fillet knives. For years, I’ve relied on Rapala knives, particularly the original one with the wooden handle. I found it to be just as good as their higher-priced models, and it served me well when filleting freshwater species.

However, when it comes to tougher fish like Louisiana redfish, I’ve noticed that my trusty Rapala knives tend to dull quickly. It’s frustrating to have to stop and sharpen my knife multiple times during a fishing trip. That’s why I started considering other options, and surprisingly, I found myself considering a Bubba Blade as my next fillet knife.

I never thought I’d consider using anything other than a Rapala knife, but the Bubba Blade has a reputation for being tough enough to handle even the toughest fish. It’s specifically designed for saltwater species and features a non-slip grip handle that’s perfect for those slippery fish. Plus, it has a stainless steel blade that’s been heat-treated to make it more durable and resistant to corrosion.

Of course, I’ll always have a soft spot for my trusty Rapala knives, but I’m excited to see what the Bubba Blade can do. If it can handle Louisiana redfish without dulling too quickly, then I might just have found my new favorite fillet knife.

Jotern Qazinho
Jotern Qazinho
2 months ago

As someone who has used both Rapala knives and Bubba Blade, I have a few thoughts on the topic. While Bubba Blade has a reputation for being tough and durable, I’ve found that it can be difficult to sharpen due to its hard steel. Additionally, the blade can be brittle and break easily if not handled carefully.

While Bubba Blade may be a good choice for new fishermen who are just starting out, I would recommend sticking with a different knife for more experienced anglers. Personally, I prefer the Rapala knives for their reliability and ease of use. They may not be as tough as Bubba Blade, but they get the job done without any fuss.

One thing I will say in favor of Bubba Blade is the handle. It has a comfortable, non-slip grip that makes it easy to hold onto even when dealing with slippery fish. However, I’ve noticed that the handle tends to fade quickly with regular use.

It’s important to note that I was sponsored by Bubba Blade in the past, but I’m now sponsored by a different knife company that I won’t mention in this thread. Ultimately, the best knife for you will depend on your personal preferences and needs. Consider factors like the type of fish you’ll be filleting, your experience level, and your budget before making a decision.

Metorium Ranstor
Metorium Ranstor
2 months ago

I’ve found that the Rapala Classic six-inch fillet knife is a reliable choice for filleting fish. To keep it sharp, I use a simple sharpener that came with the knife. The sharpener has two small ceramic rods that hone the blade, and I run the knife past the rods a few times after every six fish or so. It’s a quick and easy process that keeps the blade sharp and ready for the next catch.

When it comes to choosing the right size fillet knife, it’s important to consider the type of fish you’ll be filleting. For smaller fish like panfish, a four-inch blade may be sufficient. However, for most standard fish sizes, a six or seven-inch blade is the way to go.

Ultimately, the best fillet knife and sharpening method will depend on your personal preferences and the type of fishing you’ll be doing. But in my experience, the Rapala Classic six-inch with a simple ceramic rod sharpener is a reliable and effective choice.

Gezus Izqod
Gezus Izqod
2 months ago

As an avid fisherman, the name “filet knife” immediately brings to mind the Rapala version. While there are plenty of other knife makers and models out there, for me, the Rapala is the quintessential filet knife. It’s a classic choice that’s been a mainstay in my fishing gear for years.

In fact, to me, the Rapala filet knife is as classic as a Buck 110. Both knives are iconic in their respective categories and are known for their quality and reliability. I’ve used other filet knives in the past, but I always come back to the Rapala for its durability, ease of use, and effectiveness in filleting a variety of fish.

Of course, everyone’s preferences may vary, and there are plenty of other good filet knives out there. But for me, the Rapala is the gold standard when it comes to filet knives.

Janstero Munqo
Janstero Munqo
2 months ago

From my experience, you don’t need to break the bank to get a quality fillet knife. Most decent fillet knives in the $20 range can last you a lifetime as long as you use them for their intended purpose and take care of them. In fact, my dad has some $20 fillet knives that are over 30 years old and still going strong.

The key is to keep your fillet knife sharp. While the sharpeners that come with the knife may not be the most efficient, handheld sharpeners can quickly and easily get the job done. Even if you notice some metal loss over the years, it’s still a small price to pay for a quality $20 blade.

That being said, I recently picked up two Rapala fillet knives because I love how the contoured handles feel in my hand. They come with a case to protect the blade and a sharpener to keep it razor-sharp, which is crucial when working with fish. I keep one in my kitchen and one in my tackle box, so I’m always prepared when it’s time to fillet.

Ultimately, while there are certainly higher-priced fillet knives on the market, I believe that medium-quality $20 fillet knives are excellent blades that can get the job done. Plus, with such an affordable price point, there’s no need to spend more unless you have specific preferences or requirements.

Mordof Loreza
Mordof Loreza
2 months ago

I recently purchased a Rapala Finlander 6″ fillet knife, but I can’t seem to find any information about it online. I’ve tried searching for it, but all the results lead me to the Fish n’ Fillet knife that Rapala offers. From what I can tell, these two knives look exactly the same, with the only difference being that my sheath doesn’t have a swivel belt loop, but instead has a small notch on the sheath itself to feed a belt through.

If anyone knows the difference between these two knives, I would greatly appreciate the information. I’m worried that I may have accidentally purchased the wrong knife!

Lucaaq Gaqo
Lucaaq Gaqo
2 months ago

In my experience, Rapala fillet knives are not the best quality, but they do come with sharp blades and can be easily maintained with a hand sharpener. However, they are prone to rusting quickly, so it’s important to make sure to rinse and dry them thoroughly after use.

Personally, I prefer to use Dexter-Russell Sani-Safe knives because they are less likely to rust in saltwater, and I find the grip and blade steel to be of better quality. Their thin-bladed fillet knives are also very affordable, and you can sometimes find them on sale for as little as $10. I’ve found that these knives hold up very well over time.

Baldito Qamaz
Baldito Qamaz
2 months ago

It’s interesting how sometimes the most expensive option isn’t always the best one. I’ve spent most of my life working in professional kitchens, so I’ve accumulated quite a collection of expensive knives. 

But for smaller panfish, I’ve found that some of my favorites are the Rapalas that I can easily get at my local BassPro shop. Of course, I wouldn’t use them on larger fish like whole salmon or a loin of tuna, but for the smaller fish, they work great.

Horgellion Wuartos
Horgellion Wuartos
2 months ago

It’s been a while since I’ve tried a new fillet knife, but this year I’m on the hunt for something with better edge retention. I’m not sure if I’m ready to shell out the big bucks for a Wusthof just yet, so I’m looking for something in a more affordable range.

My main targets are panfish, so a knife with a nice bend and sturdy build for skinning would be perfect. I know I’m asking for a lot of qualities, but a guy can dream, right?