Introduction: Small Survival Knife

Picture of Small Survival Knife
Here is an Instructable on how I made the little knife in my survival kit.

Here are the things you will need:
  • 1 Sheffield "Rhino" Utility Blade
  • Duct Tape
  • Piece of Milk Carton approx 3"x5"
  • Piece of Cardboard approx 3"x5"
  • Super Glue
  • Scissors
  • Marker or Pen
  • Para Cord

Step 1: Making the Handle

Picture of Making the Handle

Using the "Rhino" blade as a guide, lay it on the milk carton so the very end of the cutting blade is on one edge of the milk carton. Mark the milk carton at the back of the blade. Keeping the blade on the milk carton flip it so you end up with the next mark a double width from the edge.

Step 2: Making the Handle (Continued)

Picture of Making the Handle (Continued)

Cut out the piece you just marked with scissors. Fold the piece you just cut around the blade. Use a few drops of super glue to bond the milk carton piece to the blade and each other.

Mark and cut a piece of the cardboard in the same manner as the milk carton. Wrap the cardboard around the milk carton you just attached to the blade, use a few drops of super glue to bond the cardboard to the milk carton. Make sure you wrap the cardboard so it covers the open end of the milk carton. (If you wrapped the milk carton with the fold on the bottom the cardboard should have the fold on the top.)

Step 3: Wrapping the Handle

Picture of Wrapping the Handle

Next wrap the para-cord as shown in the picture. Add a drop of super glue to the para-cord near where the cord goes under the wrap.
Continue wrapping the para-cord around the handle, adding a drop of super glue every 2-3 wraps, until the entire handle is wrapped. When you have finished wrapping the handle take the end and lay it along the back edge of the handle. Trim any para-cord that extends past the top (or bottom) of the handle. Using a few drops of super glue and glue the tag end to the back of the handle. When the glue is completely dry use a lighter to heat the para-cord until it just starts to melt and press it firmly into the back of the handle.

Step 4: Making the Sheath

Picture of Making the Sheath

Using the completed knife as a template, mark and cut a piece of the milk carton so you can fold it length wise around the knife blade. Next, cut a piece of cardboard so you can wrap it around the milk carton piece you just cut and folded. Attach the card board piece to the milk carton with a couple of drops of super glue. Continue wrapping it around the milk carton, using super glue as you go until it is completely wrapped around the milk carton.

Next, using duct tape, wrap the milk carton/cardboard piece from the top and down around the sheath. When you get to the bottom of the sheath make a slit in the duct tape and fold it around the back of the sheath. Continue wrapping until you have covered the sheath from the top all the way around.

Next, wrap duct tape around the sheath from side to side.

Step 5: The End

Picture of The End

The finished knife has a blade length of 1 1/2" and an over all length of 3 1/4". This little knife makes a good "back up" blade in your survival kit.

I hope you find this Instructable useful and I look forward to reading your comments.

Train to Survive!


ColinB90 (author)2017-05-05

wow nice job. I will definetley try to make this,but how strong is the blade?

b_rad (author)2015-12-06

Where did you get the blade

tomsweet65 (author)b_rad2015-12-14

Sorry it has taken so long to get back to you! You can get the blade at Lowes, Home Depot, or Ace Hardware. They come in packages of 5 or 10 (I don't remember for sure) and cost $4.99 (at least that is what they were when I got them and made this instructable. Thanks for reading my instructable and I hope this helps!

Train to Survive!


Will_P_30 (author)2014-01-06

Where could I order a blade?

msloan8 (author)2013-08-02

I just finished one of these based on your plans. I had to order these blades from my neighborhood hardware store, the "box" stores don't carry them and couldn't order them. $5 for a pack of 5, super deal. Going to make a couple more for my dad and my tackle box. I used a clothes softener bottle for the plastic, easy to work with. Thanks for the great 'ible!

kmac1 (author)2013-03-07

Nice instructable. Really like the concept! Thanks for sharing it.

Wulf187 (author)2012-05-21

Cool !

alaskaal (author)2012-05-12

Great looking knife and I will be making a couple as soon as I can find a local store that carries the blades. I have one question concerning assembling the handle. Please correct me if I am wrong, but I have concerns about the cardboard on the handle being subject to moisture and eventually failing. Why not just use two pieces of the plastic and then wrap with duct tape, or at least wrap the cardboard with duct tape as you did with the sheath.

tomsweet65 (author)alaskaal2012-05-16

The milk carton is a recent addition... I first made the handle with cardboard alone and it was just too flimsy... As for why not use two pieces of milk carton, well I had a hard time getting the superglue to hold the two of them together when I was messing about with handle construction. I am not sure if it was the uber cheap ($2.79 for 10 tubes) superglue or the material, or operator error that was the problem... Tried using the ducktape for the handle as well and it just didn't have the same "feel" and comfort as the 550 cord.

Thanks for the comment!


frozenkamote (author)2012-05-14

this is a great idea, i do this with regular cutter blades to make them lighter during travel, instead of using the handle, I just take one of the blades, wrap them in cardboard and cellotape them around tight then just pullout the blade when i need it.

great 'ible, keep it coming!

Zaphod Beetlebrox (author)2012-05-11

Does it throw well?

Either way nice knife been thinking of making my own custom knife, this is a good starting point.

Thanks for the comment... I haven't tried throwing it... Probably won't for a couple of reasons... It is small and very light-weight... If you are talking about throwing it as a potetial weapon then you have just trown away your weapon... That only happens in a Hollywood script, at least from my experience :) Look forward to seeing an Instructable on your knife when you make it!

more of a joke because of the way it looked. But ya I see how throwing it would't work.

MakerCL (author)2012-05-10

is the milk carton a standard milk carton with the labels taken off?

tomsweet65 (author)MakerCL2012-05-10

Yes, it was cut from the side of a 1 gal plastic milk jug.

B!G A (author)2012-05-10


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Bio: Thought it was time to update the profile some so here goes... Still married to a wonderfully sweet beautiful woman, still have 5 kids 3-23 ... More »
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