There is almost no reason NOT to try out one of the latin american machetes. They are like the Mora knives of the chopping world. So cheap (5-15 USD) yet so effective and truly proven. The machete's thin blade has a lot of advantages: it digs deeper into the wood, it's easier to sharpen, and it's lighter. Plus they excel at clearing lighter vegetation. They do seem to rust very easily though. If you were looking for a medium sized knife that chops well. I agree with the poster who mentions the BK7, I was pretty surprised at how well that chops for its size. That's the knife in my car these days. I also like my Scrapyard 711 (and I got the 911 on order too). Pretty sweet stuff.