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How to: One method to sharpen your knife

300 241 Survival Common Sense Blog | Emergency Preparedness

It doesn’t matter how you choose a survival knife or how good the steel is, at some point, that knife will get dull. Here’s one method to sharpen a blade.

by Leon Pantenburg

knivesshipfree.com, best knife store, best knives
This Gerber Gator, left of scissors, is undergoing field testing. It must first make it out of the kitchen!

This Gerber Gator, left of scissors, is undergoing field testing. It must first make it out of the kitchen!

Knife sharpening gadgets are on sale at every outdoors show, and I think I’ve bought one of everything. But I always go back to the traditional Arkansas whetstone method, followed by honing the edge on my grandfather’s butcher steel.

In the field, I carry an E Z Lap round diamond sharpener. It works well for touching up an edge during a butchering session, and making sure the blade stays sharp enough to work with. Back at camp, my whole sharpening system is ready to go, so the knife edge can quickly be restored to shaving sharp.

It doesn’t matter how you choose a survival knife – the best survival knife in the world is dangerous to the user if it’s dull. As the edge loses its keeness, more pressure must be applied to get it to cut, and that could lead to the blade slipping. This is bad news  if you’re field dressing a deer, carving a stick to make an emergency shelter or slicing meat. And if you have to cut a rope, you don’t want to be sawing with a dull blade.

There are a variety of ways to sharpen a knife. This video series from KnivesShipFree is good information. Check it out.

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