4 Best Way To Sharpen A Hunting Knife?

Anyone who likes to be outdoors needs to have a good hunting knife. Owning a sharp hunting knife can greatly enhance your outdoor adventures, whether you are an experienced hunter or just want to go camping occasionally.

How about the best way to sharpen a hunting knife? And this simple guide will demonstrate how to do just that.

What is a Hunting Knife, and Why is it Important to Keep it Sharp?

For outdoor pursuits like hunting, camping, fishing, and survival, a hunting knife comes in handy. It boasts a sturdy blade, a point that is razor-sharp, and a comfortable grip. For a variety of duties in the wild, hunting knives come in various sizes and shapes.

Maintaining the edge on your hunting knife is crucial. A razor-sharp knife is more efficient and safer. Knives that are dull require greater force to cut, which might result in accidents.

Additionally, a sharp hunting knife provides perfect cuts every time, whether you’re cooking while camping or dressing wildlife.

What are the Different Ways to Sharpen a Hunting Knife?

The methods and tools you use to sharpen your hunting knife can make a significant difference. Let’s examine a few typical techniques.

Sharpening with a Whetstone:

Whetstones are excellent tools for maintaining the edge on your knives. You may choose the degree of sharpness you want for your knife because they are available in several roughness degrees. Simply adhere to these simple instructions to use a whetstone to sharpen a hunting knife:

  • Whetstone preparation: Some whetstones require soaking in water before usage. Check the whetstone’s included instructions.
  • Maintain the Correct Angle: It’s crucial to keep the knife blade at the proper angle with the whetstone. Look for an angle between 20 and 30 degrees for the majority of hunting knives.
  • Apply Light Pressure: Slide the blade along the whetstone at the chosen angle using light, fluid strokes. For a beautiful, polished edge, start with the whetstone’s rough side and then transition to the smoother side.

Honing Steel:

For maintaining the edge on your knives, an honing steel works like a magic wand. It resembles a long rod and has a handle. Even though it won’t remove as much metal as a whetstone, it’s ideal for giving your knife a fast tune-up in between thorough sharpenings. This is how to apply it:

  • Hold the honing steel in an upright position with the tip resting on a solid surface.
  • Get the Angle Right: Place your knife against the steel at a comfortable 20 to 30 degree angle.
  • Give it a Glide: Gently move your knife over the length of the honing steel, swapping sides every few inches. This quick motion keeps the blade sharp and ready for use while straightening it out.

Electric Knife Sharpeners:

Electric sharpeners are incredibly convenient and simple to use. They may be able to remove more metal than necessary if you go too far, though. Here is a quick method to using an electric sharpener to make your hunting knife sharp:

  • Pick the Right Slot: : These sharpeners often have numerous slots for varied sharpening degrees. The coarsest slot should be used first if your knife is really dull.
  • Glide the Blade Through:Just gently slip the blade through the slot a few times while adhering to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Do not exert excessive pressure, always.

Sharpening Systems:

If you’re looking for a balance between using whetstones and electric sharpeners, sharpening systems are a terrific option. They provide you the same level of precision as whetstones but are easier to use. How to use them is as follows:

  • A clamp or guide is typically included with these devices to hold your knife at the proper angle.
  • Read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully because different systems may have different procedures.

Choosing the Right Angle for Sharpening Knives

Get Your Whetstone Ready:  Simply follow the manufacturer’s directions if your whetstone requires soaking. Make sure it is flat and is resting on a stable surface.

Find the Right Angle: Research the ideal sharpening angle for your knife, which is often 20 to 30 degrees.

Start with the Rough Side: Start by using the whetstone’s rougher side. Then, carefully move your knife across the stone while holding it at the selected angle. Consistently maintain the pressure and angle.

Switch Sides: After a few strokes, switch sides to sharpen the other side of the knife. Continue back-and-forth motions until the blade has a small edge or burr on both sides.

Move to the Smoother Side: After removing the burr, move to the whetstone’s smoother side. Once the burr is gone and your blade is nicely polished, repeat the operation, maintaining the same angle and alternating sides.

Maintaining the Sharpness of Your Hunting Knife

Here are some quick recommendations to help you maintain the edge on your hunting knife because it’s crucial to keep it sharp:

Regular Honing: To keep your knife sharp in between sharpening sessions, use an honing steel frequently.

Go Easy: Take it easy and let your knife do its thing. Pushing too hard will quickly dull the blade, especially when working with strong materials.

Clean and Dry: After using your knife, make sure you clean it soon away and let it air dry completely before storing it. Moisture can corrode the blade and harm it.

Store Safely: Store your hunting knife safely by placing it in a sheath or knife block to guard against damage to the blade and accidents.

Last Words

For those who enjoy being outside, a sharp hunting knife is a necessity. There are various sharpening techniques available, including employing whetstones, electric sharpeners, or sharpening systems. Maintaining the proper angle and applying light pressure are crucial. Don’t forget to store your knife safely and to maintain it often. Your hunting knife will remain trustworthy and sharp as a result for all of your outdoor activities. You’ll have a terrific day exploring the outdoors if you can keep it up.


What is the best degree of sharpening of a hunting knife?

A hunting knife should be sharpened 20 to 25 degrees each side.

Should you oil hunting knives?

Yes, you should frequently lubricate your hunting knives. This will aid in preventing corrosion and rust from affecting them.

What do professionals use to sharpen knives?

Whetstones, sharpening stones, and honing steels are some of the instruments that experts use to sharpen knives.

What is the best thickness for a hunting knife?

A thinner blade might be preferred if it will be used for field dressing animals. You might want a thicker blade if you plan to use it for wood cutting.

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