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Under the assumption that an emergency kit like the ones listed here are for the emergency of getting lost and being stranded for days, how necessary is a knife sharpener?

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

While it can be useful if you are really out in the wilds, say in the Amazon jungle, and using a machete to clear every step, I wouldn't expect to carry a knife sharpener for a trip under a week.

For short, non-jungle expeditions, A swiss army knife with a couple of blades is often enough for most people.

To summarise - it can be necessary for longer trips, or for overgrown jungle, but for many it won't.

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It's not necessary, but something that you probably would want to carry, especially if you plan on using your knife much. Buy a diamond file, very small & lightweight, and you can resharpen your knife with little effort.

I like to use something like this to keep my knives sharp:

EZE-LAP L PAK Set SF/F/M Color Coded Diamond Hones

enter image description here

I typically just use just one of these, you don't have to carry all three of them.

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If you are only carrying a knife for emergencies it is unlikely that you are going to need to sharpen it over the course of a few days, assuming of course that it is properly sharp to begin with.

However as studiohack rightly points out a diamond file is so lightweight and a sharp knife is so important that it does make a certain amount of sense and you can buy unbranded ones very cheaply.

If you are going on any kind of expedition where a knife is an everyday tool then it is a different story and a basic sharpening kit is essential.

All this of course assumes that you know how to sharpen knife effectively.

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