Nerdy Science in the Kitchen

Best Cordless Fillet Knife

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Once you’ve decided to invest in an electric fillet knife then you’ll definitely notice something – it’s a little specialized and harder to find on the internet than other items.

You’ll find lots of electric knives, but a fillet knife has a distinctive design that makes a difference. That hook, for instance, lets you get around bones and avoid catching on guts, while the blade needs to be able to make short work of bones.

Thankfully, you’ve certainly got options out there and we’ve collected a sampling of them today for you. In this article, we’re going to talk about the best cordless fillet knife options so that you can get the form and functionality that you expect, supercharged with electric power to make short work of fileting those fish.

Let’s explore the best cordless fillet knife options and we’ll see what you think – we think you’re going to like what you see!

Electric Fillet Knives – Are They Worth It?

Electric fillet knives are DEFINITELY worth the investment if you’ll be fileting a lot of fish. For folks who love fishing or simply enjoy a healthy pescatarian diet, an electric upgrade to your fillet knives essentially transforms them into precision ‘fillet chainsaws’.

While there is a little period of adjustment as you adjust to the slight weight increase and enormous power increase, once you’ve practiced fileting with your new cordless electric fillet knife, you’ll really notice the difference.

These knives make short work of skinning and where before, you had to apply a lot of pressure and hand-sawing to work through bones, now you just have to apply pressure to the trigger and hold ‘er steady. Backbones, ribs, hard scales – none of these will be much of a problem anymore – and fish like Tai Snapper and Sheepshead that taste great but which are ‘hard to crack’ for proper fileting are a piece of cake with your electric fillet knife.

Probably the biggest advantage that you’ll notice is how fast you can fillet once you’ve tried a few ‘test fileting’ sessions with your new electric. Some fans of these vibrating blades say that in a single battery charge (which can be 45 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the model), they are able to fillet anywhere from 50 – 100 fish up to 10 – 25 pounds. That’s some SERIOUS speed there.

While corded options tend to be more powerful, with lithium-ion technology you won’t have to worry about sacrificing much with a cordless option, so you’re going to have the control that you need and the convenience of cordless at your disposal.

If you haven’t tried a cordless electric fillet knife we can say with 100% certainty that they’re really worth your while!

The best cordless electric fillet knives

In an effort to help you to find the best cordless electric fillet knives, we’ve compiled this humble list of some of the best options on the market. For each of these whirring wonders, we’ll tell you a little about the product, as well as how it scored on the reviews, and the number of reviewers, and we’re going to include feedback from the positive AND the negative experiences.

Just take this information with a grain of salt – our purpose here is to let you know if we find any red flags that stick out so that you’ll know to take a good look at the reviews on your own before you make a commitment.

Besides, it’s only fair to give the 1-star reviews their day in the sunshine too, as that way you can make an informed decision and get the best product to fit your exacting requirements.

Without further ado, we present you with the best cordless electric fillet knives. Enjoy!

Bubba Pro Series Lithium-Ion Electric Fillet Knife with Non-Slip Grip Handle

BUBBA Pro Series Lithium-Ion Electric Fillet Knife with Non-Slip Grip Handle, 4 Ti-Nitride S.S. Coated Non-Stick Reciprocating Blades, Charger and Case for Fishing

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Our first entry is this excellent electric fillet knife called the Bubba Pro and it will make short work of fileting indeed!

First off, the body is built like a drill or another power tool that you’d keep handy in the garage, as it’s made from non-slip plastics and aluminum housing. Charging by a cord, it has 2 lithium-ion batteries so that you can always have one fully charged and ready when you need it and it’s portable too – everything folds up neatly in the included case.

Inside that case, you’ll also find 4 different detachable blades for different types of handiwork with your fileting, and as it’s driven by an adjustable torque, brushless motor, you’ve got a lot of control over how long it lasts and how powerful the cutting action will be. It’s a real beauty, frankly, so let’s see how it did in the reviews.

Unsurprisingly, reviewers had a LOT of love for the Bubba Pro, and out of a pool of 2104 reviews a respectable 85% gave this electric fillet knife 5 stars. Another 9% chipped in their 4-star reviews, to top off with a 94% satisfaction statistic.

You don’t see that often, and checking the comments praise for the Bubba Pro included ‘seems to have plenty of power. Appreciate the extra battery’ from ‘Ben’ and ‘you do have to get the feel of the blades. After that… it’s GRAVY’ from ‘Tracey Gevers’.

Moving along to the dark side of the reviews, only 3% of reviewers felt that the Bubba Pro wasn’t their cup of tea, with comments such as ‘I used this for Black Sea Bass and it didn’t cut at all’ from ‘Mike McGoff’ and ‘D. Augeson’ didn’t like the blades either, although he was advised by the support that he had the ‘saltwater fish blades’ and that they were immediately sending replacements. As such, while that’s a negative review, we’ve learned that they have some pretty good customer service and so we really feel good about this product – check the reviews and see what you think!

Old Timer Li-Ion Cordless and 110V Electric Fillet Knife

Old Timer Cordless Electric Fillet Knife with 8in Fully Serrated Stainless-Steel Blade, Trigger Lock, Rechargeable Battery, and Self Draining Case for Fishing, Meat Carving, Filleting, and Outdoors

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Next up we have this Old Timer Lithium-Ion 110-volt electric fillet knife and while it doesn’t have a fancy case, it does come with a handy carrying pouch and brings a whole lot of nice features to the table. Easily stored, the blades are made of robust stainless steel, and it has a nice, texture grip to ensure that you’ve got maximum control and comfort.

It’s also quite lightweight, at just 1.4 pounds, and features a safety lock as a little extra insurance against any accidental activation of the knife. We like the style of the blade – it’s a combination of the classic fillet-knife curve, so that you won’t accidentally grab at guts or gills, but it’s also serrated like an electric saw blade.

Finally, that convenient carrying pouch is mesh and it’s on purpose, as once you’ve cleaned the knife this lets it air dry, so you won’t have to worry about mold. All in all, this is a practical and solid electric fillet knife and we think you’re going to love it.

Checking into the ‘Hotel d’ Review’ we find that from a pool of 753 reviews, 76% of customers gave this product 5 stars, while another 15% felt that it had earned a minimum of 4. Praise for this Old Timer included ‘filleted 6 steelheads with this knife and it still had lots of power left’ from John, who also added that it had a ‘good price’. ‘Joseph T.’ also chipped in his 2 cents worth to share that ‘the Old Timer was ‘Sharp, Powerful, and the blade flexes just enough’.

Flipping the review coin to the frowny side, however, we find that 4% of reviewers were much less enchanted with this product, with ‘Jennifer’ saying that the ‘required trigger squeeze’ is excessive and ‘SHANE’ said that he wouldn’t cut through a walleye rib cage. While these reviews were definitely the minority, be sure to check them out to learn more if this handy little Old Timer has piqued your interest – it’s definitely worth a closer look!

VLOXO Cordless Electric Rechargeable Fish Fillet Knife

VLOXO Cordless Electric Fillet Knife, Rechargeable Fish Fillet Knife with 4 Ti-Nitride S.S. Coated Non-Stick Reciprocating Blades and Cooling Hole Non-Slip Grip Handle Electric Knife for Fishing

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Our next electric fillet knife is this VLOXO cordless electric rechargeable fish fillet knife and aside from your main blade, it comes with 4 extra specialty-length stainless-steel blades including:

  • 5.5-inch blade for Bream, Crappie, Trout, Whitefish, White Bass, and Yellow Perch
  • 8-inch blade for Bass, Catfish, Snook, and Walleye
  • 8-inch Fine blade for Cod, Flounder, and Snapper
  • 10-inch blade for Halibut, Swordfish, and Tuna

The battery life on this large, but lightweight knife lasts about 40 minutes on full charge, and a spare is included, to make sure that you can get the job done to your satisfaction. Add in the safety lock and a non-slip handle confirmed for comfort and you’ve got a fine electric fillet knife that you’re sure to enjoy!

Taking a walk over to the Review booth, we have sparse pickings with only 5 reviews, 74% being 5 stars and 26% being 4 stars, but a ‘Vine Voice’ member named ‘La Vida Loca YT Keeping up with the reviews’ who chipped in some excellent feedback that includes a video if you’re curious! Information that was given included that the blades are made of 2 interlocking blades which function as one and added that the grip makes it quite easy to wield and that their stepdad was quite thrilled with this electric fillet knife as a gift.

As the review pool is so sparse, we can only report that a reviewer was disappointed that this did not come with a carrying case, but be sure to check what little review info is present and give that video a whirl – we liked the feedback enough that we felt it warranted inclusion on this list and once you see it, we think you’ll agree.

Mershca Cordless Electric Fillet Knife

Mershca Cordless Electric Fillet Knife, with 5 Ti-Nitride S.S. Coated Non-Stick Reciprocating Blades & Cooling Hole Non-Slip Grip Handle & Practical handbag, Rechargeable Electric Knife for Fishing

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This cordless electric fillet knife comes from Mershca and not only does it come with a case, but you get 5 extra blades to go inside it! With an estimated charge of 40 minutes, you should be able to fillet up to 15-20 fish of 10-25 pound size and there’s a spare battery to help make sure that you’ve got power if there’s more work to do.

They’re good blades too, made of stainless steel with a tri-nitride coating of hard ceramic, and included with your main fillet knife blade you receive the following inserts:

  • 5.5-inch blade for Bream, Crappie, Trout, Whitefish, White Bass, and Yellow Perch
  • 8-inch blade for Bass, Catfish, Snook, and Walleye
  • 8-inch fine blade for Cod, Flounder, and Snapper
  • 10-inch blade for Halibut, Swordfish, and Tuna
  • 10-inch fine blade for Ocean Perch, Salmon, and Tuna

Finally, this unit is also lightweight, has a non-slip grip, and it’s equipped with a safety log so that you won’t be fileting anything that you don’t intend to. It’s a nice little electric fillet knife, but how did it do in reviews?

Well, like our previous entry, this one had a very shallow review pool of only 10 customers with 77% giving it 5 stars and the remaining 23% giving it 4. All of the reviews seem to be from Vine Voice members, which is nice since you generally get good feedback info from these particular customers.

‘Kayla Willis’ says she managed to fillet 100 fish on a single charge and felt that she could have done more, while ‘gbk4321’ said that this 23-ounce knife was fantastic and performed as well as their current electric knives and only weighed 6 ounces more.

Sadly, with all these positive reviews we don’t have any dirt for you this time, but on the linked page you’ll see a lot of photos and some more feedback from the Vine Voice reviews that we think you’ll find helpful if you’d like to learn more about this electric fillet knife.

Rapala R12 Heavy-Duty Lithium Fillet Knife Combo

R12 Heavy-Duty Lithium Fillet Knife Combo

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Our next contender for the best cordless electric fillet knives is this Rapala Heavy-Duty Lithium Ion Fillet Knife combo, and while it’s a little spartan, it’s a powerful electric fillet knife if that’s what you’re looking for. Included in the package is the knife itself and a large fillet safety glove, and a replacement blade is optional if that’s what you’d like.

Curious to see how this spartan offering did, we found that out of a pool of 251 reviews, 76% of customers gave this product 5 stars, while another 13% felt that it should get at least 4. User ‘myself’ tells us that the rpms are great with this blade, as they were able to ‘clean 14 fish in just a few minutes’, and ‘Jena Ringeisen’ said it was more powerful than the ‘Bubba’ model and that it was ‘awesome for cleaning big Lake Erie walleye’.

Peeking in the shade of those good reviews, we can see that 4% of customers had a much less ideal experience with their own Rapala, with ‘Michelle Smith’ telling us that it ‘cuts good but burns your hands’, as hers seems to start heating up at 20 fish and by 40 it’s too hot to comfortably handle. We checked to see if this occurred again and ‘Don Whittaker’ also reported that he gets hot quickly, so we recommend that you double-check the reviews if you will be using this in a large-volume capacity.

Likely these 2 incidents are not the usual experience, but we promised to share the good with the bad and so do with this information what you will!

BUBBA 1095705 Li-Ion Cordless Electric Fillet Knife

BUBBA Li-Ion Cordless Electric Fillet Knife with Non-Slip Grip Handle, 4 Ti-Nitride S.S. Coated Non-Stick Reciprocating Blades, Charger and Case for Fishing

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Our final entry is another one from Battenfield Technologies from the popular ‘Bubba’ line. This model 109505 electric fillet knife packs a lot of power and perks and we think you’re going to love it! Priced a bit lower than the Bubba Pro, this model comes with a spare battery that fits neatly into the included case and has 4 blades slotted and ready to use on the other side.

The included blades are a 7-inch e-flex blade, a 9-inch e-flex blade, a 9-inch e-stiff blade, and a 12-inch e-stiff blade, all sharp and wickedly serrated, titanium nitride-coated stainless steel. The construction is quite tough and durable, like the other Bubba blade model, with a die-cast body, rubber grip, and a brushless motor with adjustable torque. It even had an LED light to let you know when it’s time to swap out batteries, so what’s not to like?

With that in mind, we’ll move on to reviews to see what kind of feedback this particular Bubba model received. From a pool of 5642 reviewers, an impressive 84% gave this product 5 stars, and another 10% were willing to part with 4 stars.

Praise for this product included user ‘Pure Cajun Outdoors’ telling us ‘I can clean over 100 pan fish on 1 battery’ and user ‘None’ tells us that not only is it a great fillet knife, but that it ‘backskins even rainbow trout(with that really thin skin)’.

That’s definitely the kind of feedback that we like to hear, but now it’s time to see what kind of ‘dirt’ we can find in the 1-star reviews. Happily, only 2% of customers fell into this category, with ‘melva sdcheer’ telling us that he got a bad battery and didn’t like the battery performance anyways.

User ‘Carpy007’ said that this was a good knife for Crappie, but that he mostly fillets Catfish and he wasn’t happy with how this Bubba model performed.

With such a high volume of glowing praise, we recommend that you take a dive into the reviews to see how you feel. This Bubba model really did quite well and we’re quite convinced that you’ll be very happy with it if you try it.

Best newbie tips for using your electric fillet knife

If you’re just getting started with an electric fillet knife then there’s a little bit of a learning curve to get used to the ‘powered’ version of fileting. To help, we’ve compiled a few tips to help you to adjust to the new blade and some potential pitfalls along the way:

  • Be sure to go with a blade that’s at least 2 inches longer than the height of your fish – this will help to make sure that you’ve got enough blade to do the job right.
  • Some fish will be better suited for manual fileting, with examples being very soft or oily fish such as salmon or mackerel. These can stick to the blades, sometimes, and you might make a mess with the electric blade if you’re just getting started.
  • Fish with overly large heads are going to bend a bit when you put them down to fillet them. If you are using an electric fillet knife with these, you’ll want to use a blade with a little flex, rather than a rigid, straight blade. If you have a flex blade attachment of the right size then go with that, otherwise, you might want to go in the manual to ensure that you don’t lose meat.
  • Practice makes perfect, so don’t expect your first fish to be filleted with surgical precision. That will come quickly if you already know your way around a fillet knife, but you’ve got to get the feel for your new one first. Once you do, fileting a fish in 45 to 60 seconds becomes a very real possibility as a reward for your hard work!

Buying information for electric fillet knives

If you’ve had a few bad experiences ordering online or simply like being able to see and possibly handle products before you buy, then we’ve got a few tips that will help to find the best options on your own. Here are a few things to consider when buying electric fillets knives and accessories:

  • Ideally, you want a unit that comes with 2 batteries. This helps you to avoid running out of power when you’ve got a big job and also a little extra insurance in case you forget to charge after your last use of the electric fillet knife.
  • Consider purchasing a mesh carrying pouch if you’ll be using your knife camping or on your boat. That way, once you wash the knife after cleaning, you can store it away and the mesh will let it breathe to dry quickly and to reduce the chances of fungus forming while you’re outdoors.
  • Compare weights and trigger sensitivity if you will be doing a lot of volume fileting. A little extra weight doesn’t make much difference if you don’t have a lot of fish to fillet, but you’ll definitely notice it if you do. The same principle applies to holding the trigger down for activating the blade – if the trigger is TOO stiff, it won’t be so fun to hold for a long time.
  • Battery life varies between models, typically falling within a range of 45 minutes to 2 hours of use. Don’t assume with this important variable – check how long the battery is expected to last and subtract 10 or 15 minutes from your expectations to help you decide which unit has batteries that meet your needs.

Product recommendations

At this point in the article, it’s time for us to pick a favorite, and we’d have to say that the cordless electric fillet knife that we liked the most was the Bubba 109505 Li-Ion Electric Cordless Fillet Knife and there were good reasons for this. First off, the Bubba units are all workhorses, and this one costs a little less but you still get 4 blades from 7 to 12 inches long, in stiff and flexible varieties. That flex is important for the larger fish that you could lose meat from if you relied only on a straight blade.

It also comes with a spare battery, but one of the perks that came up a lot in the actual feedback from current owners of this model was that they were able to fillet a LOT of fish on a single charge. When you add in that it’s got a carrying case and an LED indicator to remind you if you’re getting low on power, it’s really an amazing package with everything that you need, and getting one won’t break the bank!

If you’ve got your eye on one of the others, then don’t feel bad – this was our favorite, but all of the models that we’ve shared today were selected for being quality options. Just be sure to check the reviews on your own to make sure that you feel confident and once your new electric fillet knife arrives, we think you’ll be very happy with your purchase!

FAQs

It’s just about time for us to call it a day, but on our way out we thought that we should share a few frequently asked questions on electric fillet knives before we go. Below you’ll find the questions that we get the most on this subject and we hope that you’ll find them to be both interesting and useful.

Let’s take a look!

Can you use a regular electric knife to fillet fish?

You can, but you aren’t going to have the same kind of control as you get with a fillet knife’s specialized shape. That’s because an electric fillet knife will be shaped differently from a standard electric knife, because of the different kinds of cutting involved. A standard electric knife is designed for powerful, straight cuts, and an electric fillet knife can do this, too, but the hook in the design lets you finesse your way around a fish without simply cutting it ‘block’ style.

Simply put, you could use a regular electric knife to fillet fish, you’ll save more of the meat if you use an electric fillet knife.

Can you sharpen an electric fillet knife?

You’ll need to check what kind of blades you have to ensure that it is supported, but in most cases, yes – you can sharpen your blades and it’s a good idea to do so. Sharpening the blades will depend on the style and fillet knives will typically fall in a required sharpening angle range of 18 to 21 degrees.

Doing this can help you to get the most mileage out of your blades, but we also recommend having a set of spares around just in case you need them!

Can you buy replacement blades for an electric knife?

Yes, provided that you haven’t gone with a brand that’s too obscure to have readily available replacements, buying replacement blades should definitely be an option, and an easy one at that. If you are purchasing locally, this is worth a quick search on Google on your phone.

Simply use the keywords ‘replacement blades’ and the make and model of the unit you’re considering and if you don’t get a big list of places to easily get them, we recommend that you consider a more accessible brand. Nothing will make you dislike a handy tool more than having to replace an entire unit for lack of replacement parts, so be sure to check this!

Are electric fillet knives a fairly new thing?

Actually, no. The fillet knife as we know it today wasn’t invented until 1967 when two fishermen named Roy Ostrom and Rod Weber decided to use their many collective hours of fish-filleting experience towards creating a knife that was ideal for cutting fish and maximizing the meat yield.

Electric knives, by contrast, have been around longer than the fillet knife design itself, with patents going back as far as 1939 and Jerome L. Murray and Clem Kosterman being the chief contenders for the first ones to invent and file the patents for them. As the electric knife was around longer, the fillet knife design that proved to be successful would quickly be implemented as an option for filleting fish.

Some final words on the best cordless filet knife options

In today’s article we’ve explored options for the best cordless fillet knife and our absolute favorite from the list was the Bubba 109505 Li-Ion Electric Cordless Fillet Knife. This no-nonsense model has everything that you need – it comes with 4 curable blades, 2 of which are stiff and 2 that are flexible, along with an extra battery and a carrying case to keep everything neatly stowed.

While that one was the one we liked best, if another one caught your eye then be sure to check the feedback and then go for it – all of these models we’ve shown you today have had excellent feedback and we’re confident that you’re going to love them.

Just remember that if it’s your first electric fillet knife, there will be a small learning curve, but after you’ve cut a good 6 – 12 fish you’re going to be absolutely amazed with how quickly and efficiently you can now get this done.

Electric fillet knives can really make a world of difference but don’t take our word for it… try one and you can see it for yourself! Thanks so much for reading and we hope to see you again soon!

Kitchen Professor author
About the Author: David McLemore

David learned to cook at an early age after his mother told him that he couldn't live on pizza forever, Dave uses his modest kitchen skills to recreate sorely-missed recipes from home and to occasionally make new favorite ones from places he is visiting.

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