Whether you have the most advanced rifles and bows with you when hunting, you should still have at least one knife available on the pocket. Not only is the knife useful for general camp chores, but it can also protect you in the life-or-death situation. However, always make sure that the blade is ready to use by reading how to sharpen a hunting knife.
A dull knife is a dangerous knife. It requires more pressure to operate and might even cause slippage and nasty accidents.
How to Sharpen a Hunting Knife in The Field?
Imagine that you are in the woods when you take out the knife and find it not sharp enough for bushcraft. No worries because getting its edges sharp again is relatively simple even when you have no specialized hunting knife sharpener.
Finding a wet stone
It is not so hard to find a smooth stone in the hunting field, right?
Then, get started by pouring some water on the stone and placing it on a flat surface. Hold the blade with your two hands, and slowly slide it at a 20-degree angle. Keep sliding for five to ten strokes before you reverse to the opposite edge. Repeat this process a few times, and the blade is supposed to be razor-sharp.
Using the mug
Pretty sure that you might bring a mug or metal bottle with you when hunting. You will then be happy, knowing that you can use those stuff as a hunting knife sharpening.
Accordingly, flip the mug upside down and place it on a stable surface. Better to put a cloth and towel underneath so that the mug will not slip around.
Next, slide the hunting knife’s edge across the rough edge around the rim – similar to using a sharpening stone. Nonetheless, you should be more gentle and careful not to break the mug.
Making use of a leather belt
Interestingly enough, you can simply sharpen the knife with your belt if you cannot find a stone nearby.
You correctly saw many action films in which the actors swiped his razor over the leather strap several times. And that is how to sharpen a blade in an emergent case. The rough leather features an abrasive compound to make the edge more uniform and more refined.
Getting the nylon strap instead
Without the belt or just do not want to try with the expensive belt, a nylon strap is an excellent alternative to take your knife from being dull to sharp and sharper.
All to do is to run the blade against the strap away from its cutting edge.
Otherwise, taking out another knife
If you have more than one hunting knife, you can hone the dull blade with the second life’s thick spine. Sharpening the knife on the steel provides a more effective result.
However, you should be concentrated so that you will not cut yourself with these two knives.
What Is The Best Way to Sharpen Knife Hunting?
Although the above are some tips to sharpen the hunting knife without a tool, we recommend having a specialized knife sharpener or at least a sharpening stone, especially when the sharpening devices are relatively cheap, only within $10 to $100.
Those stones are often made of naturally abrasive stones, coming in coarse grit and fine grit. Oil stones, however, seem unnecessary as many hunters say that only water performs just well. Let alone; those stones become dull with time.
Whetstones are more common than oil stones thanks to their double-sized sides: the coarse grit for very dull blades and the other fine grit to improve the cutting edges. Hilariously, the whetstones are often used for all sorts of blades, from pocket knives to bench stones.
With these sharpening stones, you had better submerge them in water some minutes before you apply the blade. You should also add a little water during the process.
As we mentioned above, the ceramic stones work much like a mug, yet generally with a fine-grit rather than the coarse grit. For that reason, they are ideal for already-sharp knives instead of bringing a very dull blade back into service.
As its name suggests, the diamond plate is susceptible enough to sharpen the knives after years of use. The monocrystalline diamond compound means the plate is extra, durable, and functional. Yet, it is also far more expensive.
Not as aggressive as the stones, the sharpeners are supposed to be easy to use. You just need to pull the blade through a V-shaped opening; the knife will be ready to cut right after.
In drawback, the knife’s edge tends to lose its angle quickly.
Those sharpening tools are modern and fast enough to live up to the expectations of busy hunters. Accordingly, those sharpeners often come in three pre-set angles for extreme sharpening, honing, and polishing. You can hardly control the sharpening degrees, though.
How to Sharpen a Hunting Knife Properly?
Before you go and buy a sharpening tool, please check the following advice first so that you can sharpen the knives more quickly and effectively next time.
- Do not wait until the hunting knives get incredibly dull.
- Understand what kinds of knives you have.
- Apply water to the stones or non-electronic tools.
- Find the correct blade angle to make the process more efficient.
- Keep tabs on the number of strokes for each side.
- Secure the knife after you sharpen it.
To Sum Up
If you ask how to sharpen a hunting knife, we answer that there are at least ten ways to complete it. Better safe than sorry, you must check the blades carefully to find out whether it is required to sharpen the edges or not.