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Melvin, actions speak louder than words, can you please put up a video and explain why?
 

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Melvin, you seem to spend a lot of time focused on "Alone", why? The contestants are limited to what they can bring in, which is not normal when packing for a survival scenario. They are allowed minimal movement from the location they are dropped, not normal in a survival scenario. They are required to follow all current hunting regulations for that area, again not normal in a survival situation. With all those rules how can you see it as anything but entertainment.

This year they started a series called "Alone, The Skills Challenge" which is actually far more informing with less BS. You should check it out.
 
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Ummm.....I'm not getting much reality vibes from or any positive alternatives from the starter of this thread....is the so called skatchet and straight razor gonna make a reappearance, in words only, again I wonder?
 

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I confess I've never seen the show, but a decent knife (either fixed blade or lockblade) is the one item that most wilderness-survival instructors say is THE most important thing to have.
back in the frontier days, and I maintain it still holds true, they could spot a tenderfoot (newbie) based on how few knives they carried.

Personally, I believe you need a minimum of two knives: a utility knife and a more delicate knife for skinning and actions requiring some finesse. I don't think I have even been in the woods for any length of time with less than 5 or 6 knives, plus a multi-tool. But I'm generally hunting, so there's that consideration.
 

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I don't get the hatred of the axe. An axe or even a hatchet are incredibly useful in the hands of someone that has even a little bushcraft knowledge. They can be a lot more energy efficient than many alternatives. I have one of those smaller Gerber hatchets and I'll pack it in with me - it is incredibly useful.

Now, I don't watch Alone, the rules as I understand them make it fairly unrealistic. But I'm commenting from actually spending time in the woods. I'm not a survival expert, I don't claim to be. I've not been stranded anywhere for weeks at a time without supplies and equipment. I also don't plan to be.
 

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nearly everyone has wised up on the Alone show about those dumbass belt knives. Maybe someday they'll figure out how stupid the axe and saw are, too.
Curious what cutting tool (or tools) you would recommend for camping, homesteading, etc, in the woods; in order of importance?


To start the conversation rolling, my first recommendation for most people for an "only one" tool would be a very good quality, medium size fixed blade knife and a way to sharpen it. I prefer a larger knife than most people, but a lot of people definitely do prefer smaller. The only Fallkniven I've ever owned, and a VERY good knife:
Wood Knife Blade Composite material Hunting knife


The sheath is one I had made up (I'm left handed), with a sleeve on the back for an EZE-Lap hone, so you always have a fast, easy way to resharpen the knife. This little combo makes for a great woods-carry knife rig.

Everyday carry Material property Knife Composite material Tints and shades


So JMD, if you don't like a fixed-blade knife, saw, or axe, what would be your recommendations; again in order of importance or preference?
 

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...Carry a small chisel for camp work...
...Buy a little pry bar and a Mora for $15 each, and be way ahead. You need a folding saw, anyway... ...Lots of places, you need a kukri or machete, too...
If you'd LISTEN, you'd KNOW that I said a SPLIT handle straight razor, dumbass. Fold that blade back INTO that handle, and it's a superb skinning tool.
PROPER straight razor has a slit "back" to the handle, lettting you fold the blade all the way back, and wedging it into the handle. It then makes a fine skinning blade.
{Speaking of "Skatchets"}The one I favor is homemade, with a pc of thick tubing being threaded onto a stud that's welded to a highly modified hatchet blade. The necessary wt comes from the coins in the ferrule. Gotta carry them anyway,might as well make their wt DO something, eh?
(For anyone not familiar with the Skatchet, it’s a small, compact hatchet usually with a removable handle. So “Skatchet” is basically a hatchet or small axe.)

So we have:
  • Small chisel
  • Pry bar
  • Mora knife
  • Folding saw
  • Kurki or machete
  • Folding straight razor
  • Modified Skatchet (with coins in hidden storage)

All being recommended as either something we should carry or (as in the case of the kukri/machete) something we “need” to carry.

But from the same person who says “you need a kukri or machete”, we have “there’s no reason to bother with a big knife”:
…There's no reason to bother with a big knife. Other gear does the many jobs that need done, better, with less cost, less wt, etc.

And from the same person who says that the saw and axe are “stupid”, we have “a saw is usually the way to go”, but that for some tasks “a hatchet is usually faster”:
…saw is usually the way to go…

…altho for quickly trimming a sapling, to make a digging stick,etc, or splitting a cow's pelvis, etc, the hatchet is faster.
and “I greatly prefer the homemade Skatchet”:
…I greatly prefer the homemade Skatchet to any commercial hatchet
Schizophrenia on display. Axes are stupid, but it’s actually faster for some necessary tasks. A saw is stupid, but it’s also “usually the way to go”. Big knives are stupid, but “you need a kukri”.

And my favorite part is that this same person who claims that carrying much in the way of tools is stupid and unnecessary, also specifically lists seven different cutting tools we should be carrying when in the woods.
 

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I'd really like to see him skin and presumably butcher an animal with his straight razor deployed the way he describes.

For some reason, people who routinely kill and butcher animals, never seem to recommend a straight razor.
It's not like they couldn't afford to buy one.

You learn quickly what tools and methods work and which ones don't. If you're lucky, all you'll do is nick yourself because you are using the wrong type of blade. If you're not lucky, you'll do a lot worse damage to yourself.

I find myself using the gutless method more and more to get the meat off an animal. It's faster, cleaner, and you have almost no risk of puncturing intestines or stomach and contaminating meat.
 

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I confess I don't even hunt anymore and haven't cleaned a deer-size animal for several years. But I've done a ton of it going back to the 1970's, and learned lessons along the way; sometimes the easy way and sometimes the hard way. Field-dressing deer size game using a straight razor or hatchet either one could be made to work in a pinch, but they'd be about last-tier options for edged tools, probably ahead of only a flint knife or similar.

While my favorite woods knife is still the largish Fallkniven or Marbles, my favorite game-dressing specific knife was a smaller Gerber Freeman with guthook. It just fit my hand really well for a small knife, did a very good job, cleaned up easily & took an edge well. It's a smallish knife, but has a very good gripping surface, larger than average finger grooves, and fit me better than most small knives did:
Train Hunting knife Wood Tool Fashion accessory
 

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Field-dressing deer size game using a straight razor or hatchet either one could be made to work in a pinch, but they'd be about last-tier options for edged tools, probably ahead of only a flint knife or similar.
sure they could be made to work, they just aren't ideal and it would take a lot more effort than using the right tools. A good flint knife is razor sharp. Their biggest drawback is fragility - I didn't know how sharp they could be until I saw a well made one in person. Completely changed what I thought I knew about them. But it takes real skill to lap a useful knife out of flint or even volcanic glass.
 
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