When emergency strikes it doesn’t allow the sufferer to make preparations accordingly, so the expert survivalists are aware of the necessary skills of preparing the things they need in case of being trapped in the wild, facing any natural or manmade disaster or disruption of services and supplies due to some catastrophic situation. The expert explorers and professional campers are given the emergency training that how they can make themselves self-sufficient and ready to face any adverse situation.
Thus in a situation when outdoor ventures are stuck they must know the handy skill of making a survival knife with the things they can possibly find in wilderness or in their garage that is no more useful for them.
Common DIY Techniques to make a survival tool
Here we are listing down some very common and easy DIY techniques that will help you to acquire a handy tool to perform the survival related chores at a perfect ease. The following steps will enable you to have your gadget ready to secure you in the wild or to do the required tasks.
- If you are stranded in the woods then you need to find quality rocks for the making of your survival knife’s blade. You may find the suitable quality rocks near the streams, so don’t miss such places while exploring for the right rocks.
- For knife making you need to find the rocks that create a ringing sound when they are banged together as they make the premium quality blade for your knife. Make sure to have larger rocks as the outer surface is usually weathered and worn so only the inside of it is used to build the blade.
- Now you need a hammer stone, a medium-sized rock with a round surface and it will simply get you to have your blade from the rock you have selected to build your blade.
- Now use the hammer stone to bounce off the edges of your blade.
- This bouncing off will chip out your blade and it will be as big as the size of your rock that you took to build your blade.
- This is your stone knife, use it carefully; rough usage, dragging, pulling and drawing will break its delicate edges.
Now if you are trapped in some urbanized emergency or you are a passionate explorer and love to innovate or want to create your own survival gear then the below are some handy technical steps to have your best companion with you.
1. Heating the piece of metal:
Find a piece of metal and to mould it into your required shape soften it by heating it up at a high temperature. Place the piece of steel upon fire so that the severe temperature could make it to bend or warp. Heat the blade till it glows and it will take several hours to be kept in the real hot fire to get the required reddish glow. Cover the fire or leave the stove to become cool overnight, in the morning when you will check the steel it would be far softer than before.
2. Shaping the blade by removing the extra material:
Just sketch or at least have the picture in your mind (shape of the blade), whether it should be drop point or have a gentle curve. Use the hacksaw blade and shape your blade accordingly with the help of a pair of pliers or tongs. Bending the extra material back and forth repeatedly will give your blade the respective shape. If the heating process is done well then you can also shape the blade with your bare hands without using any tool.
3. Grind the Profile:
This step will help you to have the required face of your steel, the way you want your knife look like. So with the help of your drawn shape just grind away the extra material of your blade. Through the hand filer you can easily shape the blade profile. Not only the filer, but rough sandstone can do it ideally. Hacksaw blade can easily be shaped in a very less time. Bench grinder must be avoided as its grinding speed is too high.
4. Creating the Edge:
Here comes the step of giving your blade a perfect edge. Maintain the right angling while grinding the edge. For this you can visualize a tall isosceles triangle to get the exact angle that needs to be grinded. The more steep the blade the sharper the edge will be. Before filing, try to ensure the right adjustment of the file and maintain that angle throughout the process. Your pushing will move the file forward along the length of the knife blade.
In case of a short hacksaw blade the entire length would be filed with each push. View the knife regularly which could easily be seen in wider materials but hard to see in thin materials. While approaching the center line you need to repeat the process to even out the bevels on both sides to get a perfect symmetry. Don’t make your edge too sharp as it can damage in the very next step of hardening.
At this stage your knife is actually ready to perform most of the cutting tasks. But this very process will make it a perfect survival gear. To harden the knife, again the knife will go under the heating process, for this you can use a standard propane torch then a rapid cooling will harden your steel making it tougher like rocks. Right after heating, shift the knife to your cooling medium and make sure you are moving the blade parallel to its length. Any other kind of movement can warp the blade. To get your blade come to the normal you can use water, oil, liquid animal fat etc.
The very color of the steel represents the temperature it has. The hotter the steel the brighter it would be. The color temperature spectrum of steel is like grey, blue purple, gold, straw white where each color represents the different temperature. Purple one is more suitable for knives. Be prepared it is a quick process so when the purple color hits the edge shift the blade to your cooling source to get the relative hardness.
7. Final Sharpening:
This stage will make it sharper than before, now your due care will last your knife longer. Avoid doing anything wrong that can damage the blade or make its edge dull. Use of sharpening tool specifically course stones or diamond-plated sharpening stone or homemade sandpaper will give the knife super sharpness as new.
8. Handle making:
By building the handle you make your knife easy and comfortable. The grippy handle will make your blade an ideal weapon for you to do all kinds of chores. You can make use of wood, bone, any synthetic material and preferably creating slapping scales on it will provide your gear extra strength and add to your comfort too. Just peg them in the right place and grind the extra handle’s material to have a perfect smart handle.
So above are the steps through which you can build your own survival knife which is more powerful and versatile than the knives available in the market. The way you keep it and take care of it will certainly make it durable and sturdier. Remember your survival gear is a sacred thing as it saves your life when time threatens it so protect it like a warm friend.