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#174480 - 01/30/13 07:34 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: oldranger]
jbylake Offline
member

Registered: 09/15/12
Posts: 202
Loc: Northern KY USA
I've done this (batoning) a couple of times in the wild, out of necessity, but rarely. I've done it while car camping a bunch of times. I seriously doubt that one could do this with a fillet knife, as their blades are usually very thin an flexible, so that the blade will flex under the flesh to "turn" it.
In a campground with fire rings, etc...I have a knife that I take specifically for that, if necessary. It's a Cold Steel copy of the K-Bar, called the leatherneck. It's been improved with a thicker blade, and a Kratex handle, and a couple of other things.
It comes pretty handy in situations where the wood is almost a little too green.
I don't see it as a Rambo type of thing, just a different tool for a different situation.

J.

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#174488 - 01/30/13 09:32 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: oldranger]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3865
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
Quote:
I have built quite a few fires and I have never even thought of batoning


I often do this for kindling and tinder with my fillet knife. I split off toothpick size pieces of fat pine this way for fire starter. That stuff is hard as rock and you only need a bit to start a fire, so batoning it works best. But it's light work the way I do it.

I have never found a need to split wood as big as in the video while backpacking. I can see how it'd be useful for bushcrafting, but that's not something I gear up for when backpacking, and there are lightweight approaches to that too when it comes down to it.

I got a military surplus K-Bar type knife as a gift last year. I really have no use for it, and it scares the bejeebers out of me. It would work good for batoning though grin
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#174492 - 01/30/13 11:06 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: oldranger]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 627
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
I just figured batoning was sort of like a fire extinguisher or an airbag. You hope you never have to use it, but it's good to know you can. I guess the real question is whether or not that assurance is worth 2 ounces.

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#174507 - 01/31/13 11:15 AM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
JPete Offline
member

Registered: 05/28/09
Posts: 304
Loc: Eastern Ontario
For whatever it's worth, a lot of my fire building has been in Eastern (or Ozark) heavy woods. I only remember battening once in the Adirondacks when another guy and I felt obliged to prove we could start a fire in a driving rain that had continued for about five hours. There was some real mocha loose on that trail, and there were two cold women with us! It worked, and I rarely ever build fires anymore, but when I did, I could always find another way to do it (like pitch or birchbark).

I carry a tiny SAK and use mostly the toothpick and tweezers. I sometimes think pliers (as, multitool) would be handy, but never enough to add mine to my weight. I have a small one, and use it around the house once in a while, and I've taken it on canoe trips but quit when I never used it.

best, jcp

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#174509 - 01/31/13 11:43 AM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: JPete]
Glenn Roberts Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/23/08
Posts: 1339
Loc: Southwest Ohio
I think Colin Fletcher called it "one-match machismo," and described it along the lines of being able to stop anywhere, in any kind of weather, and, within 5 hours, start a fire with one match. smile

I don't have that much recent experience with bad weather creating a need for a fire, but the one time early last fall that we hiked in the rain all day, on a chilly day, we just stopped and put up our tents, crawled into our sleeping bags and spare clothes (longjohns, in this case), rigged a clothesline inside the tent so our damp stuff could dry a bit (yes, it created condensation; no, it wasn't a huge problem because they were just damp around the edges, not soaking wet.) We lit our canister stoves in the tent vestibules and got warm food and drink going. A fire never approached being a necessity, and we were quite cozy. So, my humble (and admittedly narrow) opinion is that, with decent quality, adequately designed, gear I have much better options than relying on firemaking ability. For me, the need for a fire in such a situation is more an admission of failure than it is a skill. (But yes, I do carry windproof matches and a lighter - and a knife that's big enough to coax dry shavings out of the inside of wet wood. I've never had to use them, though.)

Before you (probably correctly) tell me I'm nuts, I'd also emphasize that I am a recreational backpacker, who sticks to trails in the Eastern US, stays home when the forecast is for rain the whole trip, and am rarely more than 10 miles from my car or an inhabited bailout point where I can get help. I'll freely admit that, in the much larger and more remote areas in the West, my opinion probably doesn't reflect the conditions that you all would travel under.

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#174514 - 01/31/13 12:19 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: Glenn Roberts]
Gershon Offline
member

Registered: 07/08/11
Posts: 1109
Loc: Colorado
Glenn, I think you may have misquoted Colin Fletcher. Either way it is pretty funny. It is always the last match that starts a fire, so I start the count over with each match.

The other day, I got a Trangia stove. I think it will be more suitable for my son. I am thinking in wet weather, I could light the stove with one match and set it under a teepee of tinder and kindling. It would light easily. Then I have to remember to pull the stove out.




Edited by Gershon (01/31/13 03:08 PM)
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#174517 - 01/31/13 12:41 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: Gershon]
Glenn Roberts Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/23/08
Posts: 1339
Loc: Southwest Ohio
I'll have to look that quote up sometime - I think it was in a footnote about a conversation with a not-so-impressed spouse of the fire-builder.

I used a Trangia for while; great stove - a bit heavy by current thinking, but very reliable and easy to use. I used it with a Clikstand stove base and .9L titanium pot by Evernew.

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#174531 - 01/31/13 04:01 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 627
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
Judging from this, it looks like a dremel would ruin the blades temper.

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#174538 - 01/31/13 05:42 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3865
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
It's not the tool for sharpening a blade, but for shaping, it will work.

Put the knife in a bench vise and start slowing removing what you don't want. Keep the tool moving so as to not heat the steel too much and it will retain the tempering. If it gets too hot to touch cool the blade down with water or wait for it to cool, and then continue. A wet rag will suck a lot of heat out fast. If the steel is turning blue it's too hot, if it turns red it's way too hot. Move the tool faster and use less pressure, after it cools down enough to touch it.

Working with steel is a slow process. Nothing at all like wood. That's what you have to keep in mind. The problem with a dremel tool is the grinding stones are so small you're likely to wear out several for this job. It will probably take an hour or two of solid grinding to shape the blade. Maybe more.

After you've shaped the blade you need to start working on the edge. You can rough it in with a finer stone on your dremel tool, but you need to hone it either by hand or with a knife sharpener. I'd use a knife sharpener as a final grind and then hone it with a whetstone by hand. At that point, honing it can still take a few hours to make it right.

I've redone the tips on several knives similar to how I'm describing and they worked fine for me. That's how I did it. I have never sat down with a knife maker or got to see one at work with the tools of the trade.
_________________________
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"You want to go where?"



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#174540 - 01/31/13 05:53 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: billstephenson]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 627
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
Honestly, while I do enjoy projects, I'm not into knives enough, nor are the alternatives expensive enough that all that time and work would be worth it to me. I think I'll just buy the Mora.

It's good to know this info. is here if I ever change my mind though.

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#174542 - 01/31/13 07:35 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
Samoset Offline
member

Registered: 07/04/08
Posts: 429
Loc: Newnan ,GA
Originally Posted By 4evrplan
I guess the real question is whether or not that assurance is worth 2 ounces.


Always worth it
_________________________
Some peopole live life day by day. Try step by step.

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#174562 - 02/01/13 02:29 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 627
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
Oh man, this thing looks awesome! It's not a fixed blade, and the blade is pretty short, but it's a lot lighter than the Mora and would be way more convenient for everyday carry. Plus, face it, it's an amazing looking piece of functional art. Now I'm torn.


Edited by 4evrplan (02/01/13 02:30 PM)

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#174569 - 02/01/13 05:30 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
oldranger Offline
member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 1735
Loc: California (southern)
I have the ideal solution that will resolve all your doubts. Buy both...

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#174571 - 02/01/13 05:50 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: oldranger]
Glenn Roberts Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/23/08
Posts: 1339
Loc: Southwest Ohio
Spoken like a true gear-junkie/enabler! "Did I ever tell you you're my hero-o-o-o..." smile

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#174572 - 02/01/13 05:54 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: Glenn Roberts]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 627
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
Originally Posted By oldranger
I have the ideal solution that will resolve all your doubts. Buy both...

Originally Posted By Glenn Roberts
Spoken like a true gear-junkie/enabler! "Did I ever tell you you're my hero-o-o-o..." smile

laugh

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#174573 - 02/01/13 07:48 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: billstephenson]
jbylake Offline
member

Registered: 09/15/12
Posts: 202
Loc: Northern KY USA
Bill, I think your advice may require a lot, and I mean a lot of experience, that may not be suitable for this particular situation. I've known several people who make their own knives. A couple actually had a business, but the market is so flooded with custom knive makers, that it's extremely difficult to make a profit at it. But in the end, shaping and tempering is more suitable for those who have skills in knife making, and advanced metal working.

Point being, I don't see the OP's skill level being at the point that he'd want to try shapening and honing his own blades, the OP appears to want to buy a knive.

So while I respect your skill level and expertise, the OP's "choices" and questions seem to be a bit all over the place, which would indicate to me that he needs a bit of help buying a "store bought" piece.

I would suggest to the OP to stay away from the skeletalized type handles, they're "tacti-cool", but they aren't comfortable in the hand during hard use, and the thin design is hard to control, where as a more full handle would aid in control, especially for use as a backpacking/outdoor use knife.

I would recommend that he go check some forums that specialize in this, and ask for recommendations for a knive to be used in the field, being sure to let them know that it's not a tacical knive, but for general use, and specifiying he has not interest in a 4 or 5 hundred dollar "custom maker" knife, but think about A: it's primary use, B: Blade hardness (if the OP is just starting I wouldn't recommend one of the modern cermat blades that take three wise men and a german rocket scientist to sharpen, I'd start with a normal carbon steel knive that can be sharpened without considering belts, and small power tools). Next, and importantly is his budget. I've got some fairly expensive knives that I've accumulated over time. Don't use them, most were gifts. I'm not a knife afficianado, and I get by on 3 that all cost well under $100 each.

Then, when he decides what he real needs are, budget, and takes a real assesment of his knife skills and maintenence level, choosing one might be a lot less confusing.

Just a thought.. grin

J.


Edited by jbylake (02/02/13 08:31 PM)

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#174576 - 02/02/13 11:32 AM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: jbylake]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3865
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
Yeah, you're probably right. I'm a 3rd generation metal man so I may not be a good example of a DYI'er in regards to that. I don't do much metal work anymore, but I've done a bit. Knife makers are real artists. I'm always impressed with their skill and devotion to their work.

I agree with you about the "Paraframe" knife too. I've played with a couple similar handled knives and wasn't quite comfortable with them. They just didn't fit my hand well. It's not a big issue with a knife that small, but I like a more solid handle.

I have a knife a lot like that though. It's a Mac Tools pocket knife with a solid stainless steel handle about the same size and shape. I like it a lot, carried it for years. I've lost and recovered that knife about a dozen times and finally retired it for sentimental reasons (before I lost it for good blush ). The blade did get a little wobbly on it, but that's typical of folding knives and it endured a lot of really hard use.
_________________________
--

"You want to go where?"



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#174642 - 02/04/13 06:42 AM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
JMB Offline
newbie

Registered: 02/04/13
Posts: 13
Neck Knife only. I've never needed more than a blade, and found the neck knife was easier to access than a pocket knife or one carried on a belt.

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#174778 - 02/06/13 10:27 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
djtrekker Offline
member

Registered: 02/02/13
Posts: 43
Loc: Virginia
I carry a Leatherman Wave. It serves on the trail, but also at home and on route when driving. I use the blade constantly, but the scissors prove worthy, the serrated blade from time to time, the screwdriver attachments often (maybe more at home, but handy for small maintenance chores around camp), and the pliers are big time useful.

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#175664 - 03/07/13 07:59 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
ThriftyJoe Offline
newbie

Registered: 11/16/11
Posts: 7
Loc: E Wyoming
I like a small folding knife around 3 1/2 inches closed, weighing about two ounces. I have several small pocket knives in that size range that I rotate through on my trips.

I don't really need can or bottle openers or screwdrivers on a backpacking trip. A lot of people like scissors, but I've never needed them either. YMMV though..


Edited by ThriftyJoe (03/07/13 08:05 PM)

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#175824 - 03/17/13 09:40 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
Howie Offline
member

Registered: 06/02/03
Posts: 481
Loc: Canora, SK, Canada
I have used pliers when walking my dog in cactus country. I got so I would not leave home without my mini leatherman. I pulled out lots of spines with them. Saves on the fingers.

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#178925 - 08/05/13 11:33 AM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
WDW4 Offline
member

Registered: 08/01/13
Posts: 18
Loc: Lexington, KY
I use a fixed blade knife with a 6" blade for camping and short backpacking trips, and use it for chopping wood, stirring the pot, as well as cutting whatever needs it. For longer trips, I carry my Gerber multitool. I use the pliers for removing pots from the fire, the scissors for many applications, and the knife for what you would expect.

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#179226 - 08/16/13 03:53 AM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: 4evrplan]
NotFrozen Offline
member

Registered: 08/24/02
Posts: 95
Loc: Seattle, WA
I long ago concluded that the Leatherman Wave that I got as a gift was not suited to backpacking. It has lots of screwdrivers and a pair of pliers that aren't much good in the woods. For me the Leatherman Style CS is the best. It's got substantial scissors, a decent blade, a nail file, and better tweezers than a SAK classic. Yes, it weighs 40g vs. the SAK's 20g, but I see the serious scissors as worth it. You do lose the toothpick, though, or a pen if you were to go with a SAK Signature.

Unless I was planning to do some electrical wiring work on the trail, though, nothing could get me to carry the Wave multitool.

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#179286 - 08/19/13 06:12 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: NotFrozen]
bpackengneer Offline
member

Registered: 05/01/13
Posts: 26
Loc: Massachusetts
I like a small multi-tool. A knife and pliers comes in handy sometimes. I use a Skeletool CSX Juice. Pretty tiny for a multi-tool.

Backpacking Engineer

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#179295 - 08/19/13 08:25 PM Re: Multitool vs. Knife? [Re: Glenn Roberts]
Samoset Offline
member

Registered: 07/04/08
Posts: 429
Loc: Newnan ,GA
I personaly carry a leatherman charge as a edc , but in the woods i prefer scissor forceps for scissor tasks and fishing and a decent fixed blade for everything else, that being said my charge has made it on my last few trips, i just didnt carry the other two options!

on another note a well built knife is a multi tool of sorts!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B002WRZ1KS


Edited by Samoset (08/20/13 11:37 PM)
Edit Reason: Added link
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