What’s the optimum number to carry? 1-3-10 or 30?
When I read survival blogs, or ‘learned ex-spurt’ reviews, I’m left with the one inescapable thought. They are all fixated on violence, costly metal, and variety, with a blade for every job!
Thus they are considering key ring, neck, boot, covert, box cutting, paring, gutting, boning, fixed blade, folding blade, hunting, combat, basic camp, and the all singing complete bad ass of a survival knife.
You’re probably thinking when will I get heavy!
The bolo, machete, kukri, panga, and blades used to chop, baton, and basically those used for the ‘non finesse’ type of blade work.
Well actually they don’t form part of my day to day kit.
So it’s a judgement call on my side that I’m not too bothered about them, day to day that is.
If you are a fortress type of prepper, or happen to carry heavy metal in your vehicle kit, heavy is entirely up to you. Only here’s a thought.
How many of you carry an Everyday Carry Kit (EDC) E V E R Y W H E R E!
On your person 24/7, including those little personal moments i.e. on the toilet.
If you do, I’m betting your EDC hasn’t got one of everything in the way of blades.
So what do you carry? Bit of a personal question isn’t it?
Only here’s the thing, I’m not going to recommend anything special.
I’m also not one for quality, just versatility, lightness, and freely available.
So here’s my carry (and why).
- A ‘snap off’ blade DIY knife.
Got to love these little craft / DIY knives as they are generally nice and sharp and when the tip gets blunt, I just snap off the end blade.
Cheap, easy to scatter around your kit and clothing.
- A plastic retractable box / utility knife, plus blades! For heavier use.
The carpet ‘hook blade’ is great when gutting foodstuff as the danger of cutting inner organs and contaminating the meat is lessened.
Again, cheap, light, even with 10 of each type of blades.
- A basic fixed blade stainless or carbon steel camp knife.
Full tang 4 inch blade, 5 inch ‘comfy textured handle’ with a squared off back spine which is dead useful for scraping fire steel (Ferrocerium) to generate sparks. Not forgetting descaling fish! No fancy wavy blade I’m afraid as without an expensive sharpening set, to me, they are just “Tacticool”.
Tacticool? Looks cool, but is impossible to maintain in austere scenarios.
One of the most important things I look for is a pronounced Quillon or Guard.
It’s sole job is to stop your hand slipping forward onto the blade.
And a lanyard hole. There are arguments fore and against lanyard holes.
I like them as it’s useful when lashing a knife to a ‘stick’ to make a short spear.
Or, with a good locking sheath, the knife simply hangs around the neck.
The against? That lanyard gets in the way. Ho hum. Little things matter I suppose.
- So what about sharpeners? Everyone carries one of them, right?
Mine is a basic two grade puck. Coarse and fine.
Very ‘stone age’ (pun intended) some will be thinking BUT carrying one enables me to keep the knife sharp and put a decent edge on anything I pick up AND, I’m quite good at refreshing the edge of wood chisels and repairing screwdriver blades with it.
Small note, keep it wet in use.
Total cost of everything listed, £20 ($25 USD).
So why not megger expensive steels?
Why spend out loads on something which you can resharpen and replace (unless you live in the back of beyond? In that statement is the clue for choice, buy what suits your usage and general scenarios.
Mine will probably be for minimal rural or light urban usage.
However you mountain men and Sgt Rock types can’t just pick one up from foraging like I can. Funny how you can never find a shop in the wilds!
Only there is a small point there.
Drop a knife in the dark or in the river and it’s probably gone for ever.
$100 bucks plus, (cry quietly please).
For $100 bucks I’ve got 4 times my list.
One breaks, I’ve got a replacement although I’ve never replaced my puck.
Funny that. My fire steel and puck. Both treated like gold.
Is that it? Basically yes.
Why get too sophisticated or too attached to what is basically a tool.
You replace worn tools don’t you? I replace whatever breaks or gets worn out.
The argument is what happens when TEOTWAWKI happens?
It’s called foraging and goes with my favorite thought.
Wanna know the funny thing about the end of the world?
The world is still there afterwards.