A hunting knife is a survival tool that you learn to work with and can become one of your most valuable tools. A number of features in a hunting knife can help prolong its life and make it easier for you to have when you need it. When you select your hunting knife, look for the ability to handle damp conditions, how easily the knife sharpens, how you will carry the knife, how it fits in your hand, and the weight of your hunting knife.
Knife Safety Rules
Cut away from your body when using a knife. Keep bystanders outside of arms reach when using a knife. Watch where you are holding the object and keep your knife away from that grip. Keep adequate first aid on hand in case of cuts.
Carrying Your Hunting Knife
Determine where you want to find your hunting knife when you need it and then buy a hunting knife that best suits your needs. If you want it to open with one hand, you might want it in your pocket. If you need sturdiness and a weightier knife, a sheath attached to your belt might best suit your hunting activity. If you want to sit with ease, a lanyard that allows you to carry it around your neck or tie to a changing set of places might be your best bet.
Cleaning Your Hunting Knife
After using your hunting knife, clean your knife with soap and water and dry immediately. In the field, use a leaf to remove any fluids.
Sharpening Your Hunting Knife
My husband uses a number of tools for sharpening knives. He loves his Chef’s Choice diamond sharpener, for regular kitchen knives with a straight edge. Some hunting knives like a Bowie knife look like a butcher knife and can be sharpened in a similar manner. At home my husband uses a grinder to zip sharp the edge in seconds. Whetstones come in many grit levels will help work off any use with a few strokes. Here’s some of the best hunting knife sharpeners on the market:
Chef’s Choice Sportsmen Hunting Knife Sharpeners
Chef’s choice makes a variety of knife sharpeners with fixed angles and varying grits. The work like a controlled grinder to make your knife edge as sharp as possible. Cost ranges from $80 to $500.
Gatco Knife Sharpening System
The Gatco Sharpening system is a unique system created to allow you to sharpen a variety of knives by locking the blade at an angle and working with a variety of whetstones with easy to hold handles. Cost is $12 to $80.00 depending on the parts purchased.
Lansky Knife Sharpening System
Lansky has several offerings to sharpen knives. Costs $10 to $75.00
DMT Knife Sharpeners
DMT has a lock down system that helps maintain sharpening angle, cost $59
Portable Knife Sharpeners
Buck has a portable knife sharpener with two levels of grit that comes with a lanyard to make it easy to wear. Cost $25.00
Whatever you do, make sure that you take responsibility for your knife. A good knife is a useful tool but also a weapon. Keep it safe and in good working condition.