Having your knife’s blade break is not a pleasant experience, especially when trying to survive outdoors. I try to pass some survival skills down to my kids when I can.
Learning how to fix a broken knife can save your life when you are off-grid. You should always pack an extra knife when you are outdoors, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t know how to repair the broken one.
However, there are situations where the blade cannot be repaired. Like when it’s snapped in half or it’s broken too close to the handle.
With that said, here is a step-by-step guide on how to fix a broken knife.
Step 1: Get Your Tools Together
The first thing you need to do is gather your tools. To fix a broken tip, you are going to need:
- Black sharpie
- Sandpaper and a hand file
- A disc sander
- A Dremel with a drum sander
Once you have your tools, closely examine the damaged knife. Understanding the extent of the damages will help you plan the repair.
If you are repairing the knife’s edge, you will need a set of whetstones and diamond stones.
Step 2: Mark the New Tip
Use your black sharpie to mark the new tip. Shade the section of the knife you want to remove; you will see how the results will look like at the end.
However, this repair will change the shape of your knife. If you want to retain the old shape, take some metal from the top and bottom of the blade.
If you want to retain the length of the knife, shave a little piece off the top. The part you shade will be the piece you get rid of, so be strategic while creating the new tip.
Once you have shaded the new tip, clamp your knife on the working surface. I wouldn’t advise you to hold the knife in your hand while working. It’s dangerous, and you may end up cutting an uneven edge.
Step 3: Cut Off the Shaded Area
Take your Dremel that has a cutting blade and use it to remove the excess metal. Run your Dremel at full speed to swiftly cut the metal.
If you want a nice round cut, use steady and slow motions. You shouldn’t use too much pressure; it can easily mess up the edge.
You should try to maintain the original shape of the blade to the best of your ability. Keeping everything in motion will ensure the knife is as functional as it used to be.
Once you have re-established your tip, you can proceed to the finishing stages. If you are using power tools to cut the edge, you should keep checking the knife to feel if it’s getting hot.
Too much heat on the areas you are working on might ruin the knife. A hot knife can also injure you if you are not careful.
Step 4: Sand, Grind and Polish
Once you cut the excess blade, the hard part will be over. Use your Dremel with a drum sander to polish the newly-cut tip.
Sanding and grinding will help you clean up the cut. Ensure you use the right equipment to avoid damaging the blade again.
You can use a disc sander if you have access to such tools or stick to the Dremel sander. Sometimes a wand paper can do the work, but it will be strenuous.
If you are using the hand file or Dremel, you should clamp it firmly in a workbench.
Repeat the sanding motion until; you are satisfied with the results. At this point, your knife should look as good as new. But it may be a bit bland; that is why you need sharpening.
Step 5: Sharpen The Edge
You have to complete the repair by sharpening the cutting edge. Use your hand file or a double-sided sharpening stone.
Run your knife’s blade on the sharpening stone a few times to return the tip’s edge. Honing steel can get the edge even sharper.
You can sharpen the whole cutting blade rather than focusing on the knife’s tip alone. If you want the repair process to be quick and hassle-free, buy the necessary tools.
When the tools are readily available, you can fix the broken knife without any difficulties.
Knives are multipurpose tools essential for outdoor survival. Unfortunately, they can be broken, especially when not handled with care.
Follow these steps if your knife’s tip is broken and you want to fix it.
Step 1: Get your tools together
Step 2: Mark the new tip
Step 3: Cut off the shaded area
Step 4: Sand, grind and polish
Step 5: Sharpen the edge
I am an independent safety and survival expert and consultant. I have over 15+ years of experience working with corporations and individuals to help identify, remediate and prepare for threats and and disasters. I help clients understand risks and blog about my thoughts and techniques at DisasterShelters.net