Knives, knives and more knives.
Everyone has a knife of some kind, right? And everyone has their favorite.
There are many types of knives found in the sporting goods stores, on the internet and at gun shows across this country of ours. Some have a very specific and single-use while others have multiple uses. More complex knives are coupled with a multiple of assorted tools such as the Leatherman which might include various screwdrivers, a can opener, scissors, and a saw depending on the model you chose.
What's your favorite knife brand?
Most knives are pre-sharpened from the factory for immediate use but will eventually need to be resharpened once the initial edge is dull. You will have to put that new sharp usable edge on yourself the old fashioned way by using a stone and steel. This method takes time to develop the proper sharpening skills, learn what angle is best and the process for acquiring a perfectly razor-sharp edge. First, the knife is repeatedly drawn across a coarse stone on both sides of the knife at a precise angle without variance, then repeat the process using a finer stone. Once an edge is formed the knife will be drawn across a steel or crock stick for fine-tuning to a razor-sharp edge.
"My preference for a multifunction knife is the Leatherman. It performs many functions and will come in handy on any hunting adventure."
Hunting Knife Choices
In the case of a hunting knife, the choices are many. Straight blade, long or short blade, folding or fixed blade, custom or replaceable blade to mention a few. When it comes to making a decision and choosing the best hunting knife for your needs it can be a personal preference or it could simply be which knife is best for the job depending on the size of the game you are hunting. Some hunters like to carry a knife in a sheath on their belt while others place the knife in a pocket or backpack until needed. Hunters and outdoorsman use knives for many things around camp. They might cut rope, use it as a prying tool or screwdriver, whittle a toothpick after dinner while sitting around the campfire or for skinning their trophy animal.
One of the more popular knives being used today is the replaceable blade knife. These have been around for years in the form of a surgical stainless steel scalpel blade which is used in the medical profession. By applying this technology in the hunting industry it eliminated the problem of a hunter not having the ability, the time, or even having the experience when it comes to properly and effectively sharpening a knife. Now any hunter can always have a razor-sharp blade at his or her disposal and ready to go at a moments notice for any chore at hand. When the blade becomes dull sometimes it can be resharpened with a quick touch up on a steel or it can be safely disposed of. Then by simply inserting a new blade in the knife handle, you are immediately ready to start working again with a freshly sharp blade.
Although many replaceable hunting and fishing knife companies exist today a couple of the more popular ones are Havalon and Outdoor Edge. They make an assortment of handles in different weights, colors, and lengths for many uses. Taxidermists and hunters alike use the scalpel blade knives for the detailed work when skinning and fleshing the face after an animal has been harvested. Several types of stainless steel blades in all shapes and sizes are also available for filleting fish, sawing through bone or skinning game animals. Like many things in life, the simple knife has evolved to be a complex piece of equipment but my favorite for everyday use and in the field is either a small folding “Buck” knife or the “Old Timer” made by the Imperial Schrade Corporation. In addition to my carbon or stainless steel resharpen-able knife, I always carry a razor blade knife as a backup and for the intricate work on the face of my trophy animal. Regardless of your choice be sure to test your knife and be familiar with it before going into the field since this is a very valuable piece of equipment and you can’t afford to have it fail you.
Be safe and keep that edge sharp!
Fred's Top 3 Hunting Knife Tips
These are a couple of my all-time favorite folding knives. They are small enough to carry in your pocket day-to-day or while hunting. One has blades made from carbon steel and the other from stainless steel, but they both must be re-sharpened by the user to maintain a sharp edge. You can’t go wrong with either of these knives.
My preference for a multifunction knife is the Leatherman. It performs many functions and will come in handy on any hunting adventure. This knife may be used for sawing limbs, prying, opening cans, whittling or tightening a screw on your bow, gun, tripod or any other piece of hunting equipment. Whether your hunting, fishing or just camping the Leatherman is a must-have.
When it comes to a folding scalpel blade knife, my choice is Havalon with the #60A stainless steel blade. It comes in a variety of colors and styles with a convenient carrying case for the knife and extra blades. Wherever my hunting excursions might take me around the world, you will always find me carrying a Havalon in my backpack.