Step 9: Practice, Practice, Practice

My final word on the subject of wilderness survival is simply the adage that practice makes perfect.   Survival skills are something you only want an academic knowledge of if you ever truly need them.  If you need them you will want experience, so NOW is the time to start having that experience.  Take baby steps if you need, put down the game controller, practice tying knots.  Leave the tent at home on your next campout, build your own shelter.  Forget the matches on the next trip.  Practice, practice, practice.  Chances are if you have read this 'ible you'll enjoy it anyway.

Thank you,
Comments welcome.
<p><a href="https://www.instructables.com/member/absurdism" rel="nofollow">absurdism,</a>I have a hard time believing that stainless steel will hold an edge better than a high carbon steel blade, never seen it in all of my experience, also if high maintenance means putting a little oil on the blade every few days, then I guess you have been an office worker too long. Can't find oil in the wild, try from the side of your nose, I have naturally oily skin so I can oil a six inch blade at one time.</p>
<p>The image for the bowline knot is in fact an image of a taut-line hitch. While the taut-line hitch is a very useful knot (for creating taut holding lines for tents and such), these are two very different knots. Please see <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bowline" rel="nofollow">https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bowline </a> for an accurate picture and tying instructions for a bowline.</p><p>And if you're interested, see <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taut-line_hitch" rel="nofollow">https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taut-line_hitch</a> for an explanation of the taut-line hitch, another wonderful knot to have in your repertoire.</p>
I like, brother. I was a Royal Rangers Leader for 25 years, and also an adult FCF member years ago (the good ole, bad ole days, if you know what I mean - initiations and such), have lapsed for awhile. Concentrated on Boy Scouts, and my son is an Eagle. He almost got his GMA as well. Regrets: in view of recent &quot;membership developments&quot; which I believe will destroy BSA, I now sometimes wish I had stuck with Royal Rangers only. Very good to see the program is alive and well.
Great write-up!<br><br>Step 9 - Practice is definitely the most important, yet often missed. Glad you posted it.
Stainless steel has better edge retention than high carbon but it cannot hold an edge as sharp high carbon. Carbon steel is softer but you can hone it to a ridiculous level of sharpness. In a wilderness survival or self reliance situation it's a toss up between the two. You were correct about stainless steel ability to resist corrosion. Stainless doesn't rust and is tougher but will never be as sharp as high carbon. High carbon steel blades are not as tough but they do have the advantage in terms of sharpness. The disadvantage of carbon steel is that you need to treat the blade to avoid it oxidizing. If you ask me, a knife that doesn't rust and keeps its edge longer would keep you alive longer, as opposed to a soft bladed knife that rusts if you don't have a preferable environment to store it in and the materials to treat it right. You could be soaking wet for days in the wild and if your blade gets wet for days it will definitely get rusty. There are alloys now that incorporate the best qualities of each but you should expect to pay a lot for them.
High Carbon = Sharper, more flexible, susceptible to corrosion/high maintenance.<br>Stainless = Resistant to corrosion, tougher edge, not as sharp, low maintenance.

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