No doubt about it, the Tracker is one serious survival knife.
Back in the days when I was a student at the Tracker school, a knife called The Tracker, was made by Dave Beck, and were for sale at the Tracker school when available. You can read the history of the Tracker knives - HERE The Tracker is an all purpose survival knife.
Recently I have received inquiries regarding sharpening the Tracker Knife. With any knife, sharpening takes patience and developing the correct technique to sharpen and maintain the edge of your blade.
TOP Knives manufacture the Tracker and according to their website they will sharpen your Tracker knife for free. However for our purpose its better to learn to sharpen your own knives.
A note on sharpening systems that use clamp-on-guides, ceramic V,s or diamond dust stones. I have used these systems and some work better than others but your better off learning how to sharpen your knife by hand.
All that is needed to keep your knives sharp are: a coarse stone for coarse grinding the relief when needed and blade edge. A fine stone for finishing the coarse edge, a hone (Kitchen Honing Steel will work), and a leather Strop, belt, for polishing the edge to make it extremely sharp. I use both a composite coarse and fine stone but most often I use a sandpaper system with wet and dry sandpaper that I have attached with carpet tape to 2×4 smooth wooden blocks, about 12″long, and a leather belt from the thrift store for my Strop. This is the same system I teach during my survival courses.
Through research on sharpening stones and hones you will find a head spinning variety. Some excellent sharpening stones are several hundred dollars apiece. Composite, wet, or oil stones that are coarse on one side and fine on the opposite side are a handy system to own.
Use a Wet & Dry Grit Sandpaper starting at 150, the lower the number the coarser the sandpaper, to 1000 and up for a hone polish. So you might start at 150 grit for your coarse, 400 for your medium, 600 to 800 for your fine, 1000 and up grit, for your hone, and a leather belt for your strop. Multiply times three, for each stage of sharpening. So if you begin with your coarse stone and sharpen the edge 30 times and each side of the blade, then multiply times three for your medium stone, which would be 90 times on each side of the blade and so on.
To answer the question, “At what angle should I sharpen the Tracker knife?” or for any knife including SOG Knives Seal Pup Elite, the answer is, use the manufacturer’s angle straight from the box. Contact TOP or SOG knives if you want the precise angle.
Learning to sharpen your knife is not rocket science, but as with all bushcraft skills, there is a learning curve that includes time, persistence, patience, and elbow grease. So good luck and happy sharpening!
Or if you’re coming to Lifesong Wilderness Adventures, bring your Tracker Knife with you and learn to sharpen it during one of our very fine wilderness survival courses.
Questions? Go ahead and ask.