Knife sharpening & maintenance

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Knives and other bladed tools have helped humans survive since before language existed.

That’s why you’ll find a knife, hatchet, axe, saw, or scissor in the emergency supplies of every expert on the planet, and why a blade is one of the very few items people keep on their body for everyday carry.

But knives are wear parts — they dull with time and use, becoming ineffective and dangerous. If you don’t know how to keep your blades sharp, their usefulness will drop off quickly in an emergency. Skills are just as important as gear!

These skills help you save money in daily life, too! Don’t toss out kitchen knives or scissors that just need a few minutes of love, and don’t pay others to sharpen them for you. Knowing how to care for your blades will also help protect your investments in quality field knives, axes, hatches, etc.

This course includes ~5 hours of video content over dozens of lessons, and is equivalent (or better) to an in-person weekend class.

We start with the basics and get into hands-on demonstrations with all of the common sharpening gear you’ll find among preppers, including:

⚬ The basic parts of a knife and common types of steels, edges/grinds, and wear.
⚬ How to use strops, sharpening stones, pull-throughs, and belt sanders
⚬ How to improvise with stuff like jeans, cardboard, toothpaste, or car windows
⚬ How to clean and store a blade

You’ll learn just the right amount to go from “I know nothing” to “I know how to take care of any blade with proper sharpening tools or random materials found during an emergency.”


“This course really is valuable. And a bargain. It makes explicit what a lot of knife elitists assume people know. It is also the only place I have ever seen a full explanation of the mousepad method. Really well done.” – Tony Sculimbrene, Everyday Commentary (a popular knife reviewer)

Meet Your Instructor

Jon Stokes sane prepper

I’m Jon Stokes, deputy editor of The Prepared and lead on all of our bladed gear reviews. I’m a life-long knife nerd who started using and caring for blades as a boy growing up in the woods and bayous of the Gulf Coast. 40 years later, I still enjoy breaking out the sharpening strop for some mindless unwinding at the end of a busy day.

If you visited my home, you’d see stacks of books ranging from the history of knives to modern steel smelting processes, a collection of 100+ blades, buckets of sharpening tools, and a slightly-annoyed wife!

I’ve spent countless hours on similar courses and training, combined with years of interviewing experts in my role as a journalist and prepping teacher — and I want to shortcut your journey based on what I’ve learned.

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