Myth |ˈmith| (n) – A widely held but false belief or idea; a misrepresentation of the truth.
The problem with myths is that they often come from people that seem to know what they’re talking about and are often intermixed with the truth. When talking about knives, it’s all too easy for us to accept myths because it’s often what is offered up to us.
Knives are an essential part of survival and prepping, so getting your facts straight on them is crucial to proper prepping. Let’s dispel the top five myths about knives and finally set the record straight.
Myth #1: Forged Knives are Stronger
In the world of knives, there are two key production techniques: stamping and forging. Stamped blades are literally stamped out of a sheet of metal by a machine before being ground, sharpened, and assembled. Forged knives, on the other hand, are heated and hammered into shape before the finishing process turns them into actual knives.
While it seems like a forged knife would be stronger thanks to the heating and cooling process and all the handmade love it receives, it’s simply not true. In the past, forging a tool helped to remove impurities in the metal, giving the finished product a much stronger makeup. Today, however, the metal used in the stamping process is surprisingly hard and strong.
Sure, low-quality knives are made in the stamped production process, but that doesn’t mean ALL stamped knives are ineffective. It does mean this is a way for you to save some money over a forged knife and still get a great, long-lasting tool.
Myth #2: More Expensive Knives are Better
Speaking of the price of your knife, it stands to reason that the more expensive a knife is, the higher quality it is too. When talking about knives, the difference in price from highest to lowest is staggering.
Sure, a $30 knife is almost guaranteed to be leaps and bounds better than a $10 knife, but is that $200 knife really that much better than, say, a $50 one?
When it comes right down to it, what you need to do is try a few knives out at your local outdoor store and read the reviews online. There are amazing knives out there for $30 that rival $100+ models, but in the end it’s all about what you like the most and what will last. Just remember, more money doesn’t always mean more quality.
Myth #3: Some Knives Never Need to be Sharpened
Back to the cost of a knife, it’s a commonly held belief that expensive knives require less sharpening due to their hardness. While yes, a harder metal will hold a blade longer, in the end every blade requires regular sharpening to stay effective.
There is no such thing as a blade that never needs sharpening, no matter how the knife is marketed. To keep your blade in top working order, it should be sharpened on a regular basis, regardless of the price or quality of the knife.
Myth #4: Stainless Steel Never Rusts
The name of stainless steel can be a little misleading, as it’s not truly stainless at all. Given enough time and mistreatment, even the best stainless steel blade will rust and stain.
Stainless steel blades are definitely highly resistant to rusting, but that’s it — just resistant. That means that even the best stainless steel knife must be maintained routinely with sharpening and oiling. Keeping your knife clean, sharp, and oiled is the only way to stave off rust and stains and keep it like new for years to come.
Myth #5: Assisted Open Knives are Switchblades
This myth is often held by those who are not super familiar with knives, but it’s still worth repeating. Automatic knives, or switchblades, are knives that are commonly used as weapons due to their ability to quickly deploy with the press of a button. While not always used as weapons, they are often illegal to carry and considered very dangerous by law enforcement.
Assisted open knives, on the other hand, have springs inside them that help a blade to open more easily once you start the opening process yourself. These knives cannot open on their own and are made to make one-handed opening a breeze.
Assisted open knives are definitely not meant to be weapons, and they are rarely, if ever, classified as such by law enforcement. They are efficient, easy-to-use tools that open easily and quickly for immediate use.
Knives are such an important part of survival and prepping that knowing the facts about them is crucial to your overall survival plan. Not only do you need to have a solid knife to depend on in an emergency, but you also need to make sure you’re not wasting your money on something you don’t need.
Know the facts and buy your next knife with confidence. Remember, the knife in your pocket could very well save your life, so know the facts and treat it with respect.