Being able to maintain your knife is as important as maintaining your firearm for several reasons. You may need to transition to your knife in a defensive situation, so you’ll need to have the confidence that it will deploy when you need it and that it has a serviceable edge.

In the field one of the hardest things to reproduce is a useable knife. In a survival situation you may need your knife to process wild game, for first aid, to process wood for a fire, or to cut through rope or other material.

When I get a new firearm, one of the first things I do is field strip it to get a visual of how all the parts interact. I also like to wipe the parts down and give them the appropriate amount of oil. Well, when I get a new knife I do the same thing. I field strip the knife to get a look at how the internals work, and to also make sure that it has the proper amount of oil on the pivot. This gives me the confidence of knowing how to disassemble the knife, what the parts look like and how they work.

Sentry Solutions: Knife care and maintenance kit

It contains their TUF Cloth and TUF Glide lubricant. I’ve found that adding a drop or two of the TUF Glide to the pivot after cleaning the knife really makes the deployment of the blade smooth and fast.

Sentry Solutions: Knife care and maintenance kit

I once heard a survival expert say that you sharpen your knife once and hone it for life. To keep my knives sharp I use some very basic tools, as I like to keep things as simple as possible.

For my Emerson CQC-7 knives I use a diamond sharpening rod for the straight edge and the small rod on the Smith’s sharpener for the serrated portion of the blade. I also use the carbide and ceramic sharpeners on the Smith’s for all purpose blades like on Leatherman Multi-Tools.