ESEE Candiru: Fixed-Blade Knife Built To Carry Every Day

It might be named after a fish that, according to legend, swims UP a person’s urine stream. But this is a knife you definitely don’t want to leave behind if you go out into the woods.

ESSE Candiru

The Candiru is small but packs a tremendous punch. ESEE is Jeff Randall’s survival tool company, offering a range of capable outdoor cutting edges, from huge choppers like the Junglas to high-carbon arrowheads.

Each ESEE tool is simple, robust, and capable. Most range in size from plain big to Sasquatch-proportioned. The Candiru is different; this is a tiny blade.


Basic Specs – ESEE Candiru
  • $49.95 (handle scales sold separately)
  • Steel: Rowen heat treated 1095
  • Blade Length: 2 inches
  • Overall Length: 5.13 inches
  • Weight: 1.7 ounces
  • Made in USA
  • Product Page / Review / Buy Now

With a short cutting edge, the Candiru is excellent in the wilds. But thanks to an optional thin kydex sheath, it is pretty good in civilization, too.

Part of a growing trend, the Candiru is truly a fixed blade you could carry every day.


The knife itself is simple — a slab of Rowen heat-treated 1095 with a drop point blade and a good size skeletonized (no scales) handle.

The entire knife, except for the actual cutting edge, is powder-coated to inhibit rust on the high-carbon steel.



In the hand, the Candiru feels something like a scalpel, capable of moving and cutting with precision you might not expect if your idea of a fixed blade is the USMC Ka-Bar.

There is a run of grip-enhancing jimping on the spine of the blade, and the handle rests well in the hand, giving you plenty of grip on the little knife.

candiru handles
Handles are sold separately

Despite its small size this is a real fixed blade. You can pound it through wood, drive it into the ground, and do some light prying with it (of course, you should never abuse your knife).

The edge will hold in part because 1095 steel is good at that and in part because the Rowen heat treat ESEE uses is one of the best in the cutlery business when it comes to 1095.


As a camp knife, the Candiru excels. You can do some handicraft with wood, prep food, cut rope, and trim up meat. One part paring knife and one part chopper, the Candiru is one hell of a work knife.

For the price and size, you’d be hard pressed to find something more tough and capable than the Candiru. This is a knife you want in your pocket, despite the cringe-inducing namesake.

–Anthony Sculimbrene is a writer, knife junkie, and the founder of He writes ‘Select Cuts’ as a weekly column focusing on a single knife and why you should consider buying it.