Best Pocket Knife Sharpeners For A Razors Edge ANYWHERE

By Will Brendza | Updated: 09/08/2023

Today, I have something really important to share…

A Complete Guide To Finding (& Using) A Quality Pocket Knife Sharpener

Because this critical device keeps your blades razor sharp no matter where you roam.

And with so many options today, there’s no excuse NOT to own one.

But it’s hard to know which one is the “best”. And “BEST” is a loaded word, right?

“Best for WHAT and for WHOM?”

So today, I cut through ALL the B.S. and answer all these questions and more…

TOPICS IN THIS GUIDE…    ↓(click to jump)
Survival Gear Checklist eBook Cover -with fire piston on a rock and campfire in the background

Want a free 54 item survival gear checklist?

Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.

The 5 Most Dangerous Knife Sharpening Myths

When it comes to sharpening a knife, you’ve gotta separate fact from fiction.

Or you may end up with a blade that’s duller than a butter knife.

So, let’s dive in and cut through the nonsense…

Myth #1: “Any Sharpener Will Do”

Not all sharpeners are created equal!

There’s a whole bunch of ’em out there – from whetstones to honing rods, and even those cheap gizmos you see on late-night infomercials.

The truth is:

The right sharpener depends on your knife type.

You wouldn’t use a sledgehammer to hang a picture, right?

Well, the same goes for sharpeners.

So, do your homework and choose the right tool for the job.

Myth #2: “A Sharp Knife Is a Dangerous Knife”

You’ve probably heard this one before –

“A dull knife is safer because you won’t cut yourself!”

Well, let me tell you, that’s hogwash.

“A dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp one.” – Ancient Proverb

Here’s why:

A dull knife requires more force to cut.

This in turn increases the chances of it slipping and causing an accident.

A sharp knife, on the other hand, bites into what you’re cutting.

This makes it more predictable and controlled.

So, keep that blade sharp and stay safe out there!

Myth #3: “More Pressure Equals Sharper Blade”

I’ve seen folks out there putting all their might into sharpening their knives.

They “think” more pressure means a sharper blade.


Excessive pressure can actually damage your blade.

Instead, focus on the right technique and maintain a consistent angle.

That’s the secret to a wickedly sharp edge.

Myth #4: “Sharpening Removes a Lot of Material”

People worry that sharpening their knives will eat away at their blade.

Well, let me set the record straight – a good sharpening session only removes a minimal amount of material.

You’re not gonna turn your trusty pocket knife into a toothpick.

So, don’t be afraid to touch up that edge when it needs it.

Myth #5: “Once Sharp, Always Sharp”

Here’s the kicker – even a perfectly sharpened knife won’t stay sharp forever.

Over time, with regular use, that edge will dull.

It’s just a fact of life.

So, don’t think you can sharpen your blade once and be good to go forever.

Make knife maintenance a regular part of your routine.

That way, you’ll always have a reliable cutting tool at your side.

Best Pocket Knife Sharpeners For Sale Today

In this section, we’ll look at the highest-rated compact sharpeners:

1 Our Top Pick
Smith's Abrasives PP1 Hunting Pocket Knife Sharpener

This is one of the best options available and the one I personally own.

Smith started as a stone company and has evolved to become one of the best knife sharpener makers in the world. Their products are made in America and manufactured to meet their high-quality standards.

This sleek and slim pocket knife sharpener was engineered for outdoorsmen and survivalists.

It features a foldable diamond-coated sharpening rod. This rod allows for sharpening both serrated and straight-edged blades.

It also has one set of carbide blades for restoring edges on dull or damaged knives and shaped ceramic stones. These carbide blades allow you to add a finished polish to any blade.

Both the ceramic stones and the carbide blades are reversible and replaceable. So you can extend the life of this sharpener indefinitely.

Check Today's Price
We earn a small commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
↓ Smiths Pocket Pal Knife Sharpener

SHARPAL 101N 6-In-1 Pocket Knife Sharpener

This SHARPAL sharpener is also a multi-tool because it serves several different purposes.

First, it is an excellent knife sharpener.

It features tungsten carbide blades for quick edge setting and ceramic blades for fine honing.

And it includes a diamond-coated rod.

It also includes a fire striker, fishhooks, and a high-pitched survival whistle.

Check Today's Price
We earn a small commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
↓ SHARPAL 101N 6 In 1 Knife Sharpener

Rada Cutlery Quick Edge Knife Sharpener

This knife sharpener is made from durable black nylon plastic and two steel wheels. Plus, Rada Cutlery makes this sharpener right here in the USA.

It comes with a plastic case to make portability easy and convenient.

But, by far, the best aspect of this small pocket knife sharpener is its lifetime guarantee!

If ever it breaks or malfunctions, return the product and get it replaced.

Check Today's Price
We earn a small commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
↓ Rada Knife Sharpener

Gerber Bear Grylls Field Sharpener

Gerber Gear designed this sharpener with two different shaped diamond coated rods to evenly sharpen any blade.

It has a grippy rubber handle for comfortable and safe handling. And it comes with a smooth hard-plastic case to protect it no matter where you store it.

At only 4.5 inches, it fits snugly into any pocket or backpack. And with its hard-shell case, you don't have to worry about what else gets thrown in there.

Check Today's Price
We earn a small commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
↓ Gerber Bear Grylls Sharpener

Knife Sharpening Stone Kit - 2 Side Whetstone Set

This list would not be complete without at least one whetstone option. What this sharpener lacks in portability and sleek design, it makes up for in sheer utility.

This two-sided whetstone comes with a bamboo base to set it in during use.

A rubber base to hold it in place, and even an angle guide to help while you're using the whetstone.

One side of the stone is coarse to shave off any dullness or damage on a blade. The other is fine-grained to polish the job off and fine-tune the edge after you have used the coarse side.

While this option comes with some handy extras, the best part of it is you do not have to use them. The stone is all you need to sharpen a blade, and the stone by itself is "relatively" portable. But it's too large to be considered a "pocket" knife sharpener.

But if you put it in your backpacking backpack or inside of your bug out bag, expect an increase in weight. You're packing a rock!

This whetstone option is usually best to store in your survival gear, a survival vehicle, or at a bug out location.

Somewhere you won't have to carry it very far.

Check Today's Price
We earn a small commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
↓ Three-Way Cut Whetstone Review

Best Pocket Knife Sharpener Features

There are a few qualities that every good sharpener should have.

First and foremost, you want to make sure it lasts.

Make sure you can rely on the sharpener to do its job when the time comes.

There are a lot of options that wear out quickly or fail to put a real edge on a blade.

A useful survival sharpener needs to be lightweight.

The most prominent reason whetstones are not more popular is because they are heavy.

Having one of those bad boys in your bug-out bag will weigh you down.

Along those same lines, you want one that is small enough to fit in a bug-out bag, get-home bag, or survival pack.

Bulky ones make for complicated survival accessories to pack.

Finally, some extras are nice too.

It doesn’t have to be a multi-tool sharpener.

But many modern sharpeners do come with some handy features.

Survival Gear Checklist eBook Cover -with fire piston on a rock and campfire in the background

Want a free 54 item survival gear checklist?

Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.

Knife Sharpening

How To Sharpen Your Knife To A Razors Edge

So you’ve bought yourself a new knife sharpener.

Cool. Now what?

You’ve got all these dull or damaged blades, and now you have the necessary tool to hone those edges.

But how in the hell do you put it all together?

Lucky for you, sharpening a blade is pretty easy, especially if you are using one of those fancy modern pocket sharpeners listed above.

So here is the rundown:

With A Sharpener

1. First, you use the diamond-coated rod.

Run your blade along the rod at an even 15-20 degree angle.

Make sure that you maintain a steady angle as you run along the blade, evenly sharpening every inch of the edge.

2. Next, run the edge through the tungsten blades affixed to the sharpener.

This is easy.

Just set the base of the blade in the tungsten niche and draw it back through the metal pieces.

The tungsten should squeeze the edges of your blade and sharpen them significantly with only a few passes.

3. Finally, do precisely the same thing as you did in step #2, but with the ceramic sharpener.

Ceramics is finer than tungsten.

This step fine-tunes the edge of the blade, polishing them to a near-perfect edge.

With A Whetstone

1. Wet your whetstone.

Dunk it, soak it, and make sure it’s sopping wet.

Then set it out on a flat surface on top of a dish rag (or your fancy bamboo non-slip base).

Continually re-apply water as you’re sharpening your blade.

2. Start with the coarse-grit side of the stone.

Run the blade along the whetstone at a consistent 15-20 degree angle.

Start at the tip of the blade and draw it back towards you, gently moving along the length of the blade to its base.

Apply light pressure as you do so.

Do not go overboard.

You probably do not need to run the blade over the whetstone more than a few times.

Unless it’s significantly dull or you’re trying to rub out some blade damage.

3. Turn the knife over and do the same thing.

4. Turn your whetstone over to its fine side.

Repeat the same process with both sides of the blade’s edge to finely hone your knife.

5. Rinse off the whetstone and clean off any grinding residue.

6. Wash the blades in hot water.

Survival Gear Checklist eBook Cover -with fire piston on a rock and campfire in the background

Want a free 54 item survival gear checklist?

Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.

Last Resort Sharpening Methods

But what if you don’t have anything? No pocket sharpener, no whetstone; nothing?

How do you sharpen a knife, then?

Stay calm; you can still keep your blade razor sharp.

It just might take a little extra work and some ingenuity.

There are a few common resources that you can use to achieve the same purpose.

Ceramic Mug

Get your hands on a mug, and flip it upside down.

Make sure that you can see a ring around the base of the mug of bare ceramic; that’s your makeshift pocket knife sharpener.

Make sure it is wet, and draw the blade along that ring at a 15-20 degree angle the same way you would with a whetstone.

This technique should sharpen your knife relatively well.

It might not be perfect or the most efficient way of sharpening a blade, but it will do in a pinch.

An upside-down ceramic plate will also work.

↓ How To Sharpen A Knife With A Coffee Cup


Find a stone that comfortably fits your hand and has a relatively flat side.

Riverstones work best for this; the finer grain of the stone is, the better.

Make sure the stone is wet (as always).

Hold the stone in one hand and your knife in the other.

Now draw the blade back along the stone at a 15-20 degree angle.

This process may take longer than it usually would with a whetstone or a diamond-coated sharpening rod.

But it will eventually get the job done.

Different rocks will work better or worse, depending on their geologic makeup.

So, try a few different ones to get the best bang for your buck.

↓ How To Sharpen A Knife With A Rock

Leather Belt

Technically this will not sharpen the blade so much as to make it keener and straighten out its edge.

But it will generally make a knife more effective.

Run the knife away from the cutting edge, along the inside of the belt, like a barber sharpening a straight razor.

Be sure that the belt you are using does not have any stitching, or you might ruin it.


This stuff is cheap to buy, and you can find it in just about any garage.

Start with a coarser grit to get the initial sharpening and a finer one for the polishing off.

You can wrap the sandpaper around a wooden block and make yourself a poor man’s whetstone.

↓ Sharpening On Sandpaper

Vehicle Window

A car window’s rough, rounded edges make for a tremendous honing tool.

And there will always be an abundance of cars lying around.

Just roll the window halfway down and draw your knife’s blade along the edge of the window.

This makeshift sharpener will allow you to hone your blade to be razor-sharp.

↓ Best Knife Sharpener In The World – Car Window

Another Knife

Remember, steel sharpens steel!

So if you’re hurting for items you can use to sharpen a knife, you can use another knife.

Use the spine of another knife just like you would a whetstone and draw your dull blade along it at an angle.

Final Thoughts

Maintaining a sharp edge on your tactical knives is every bit as important as owning the knife itself.

A knife is only as good as its blade, and its blade is only as good as you maintain it.

Letting a knife get dull or damaged can be dangerous.

Not only does it make your knife harder to use, but it’s allowing your survival tools to fall into disrepair.

A sharp knife is symbolic.

If you let your blades get dull, you’re likely not taking care of the rest of your survival gear.

These days, pocket knife sharpeners come in all sorts of shapes and sizes.

It’s not difficult to find a high-quality one that easily fits into a pocket or bug-out bag.

Make sure you are prepared to take care of your knives so your blades can take care of you.

Why Trust Skilled Survival...

Go here now to review a full breakdown of:

  • Who We Are
  • Our Credentials
  • Our Mission
  • & Product Recommendations...

Here are a few highlights of our teams credentials & certifications:

  • Certified Member of a Mountain Search & Rescue Organization
  • Plant Emergency & Safety Leader for a Major Food Manufacturer
  • Member of the 10TH Mountain Division Hut Association
  • Certifications: Avalanche 1, WFR, CPR
  • Official Gear Tester for Numerous Outdoor Gear Companies
  • Countless Multiday Backpacking trips into Remote Wilderness
  • Bachelor's Degree In Mechanical Engineering 
  • Bachelor's Degree In Civil Engineering
  • Bachelor's Degree In Biomedical Engineering

"It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it." - Warren Buffett

We're fully aware that trust is NOT something you GET but is EARNED.

And we'll continue to earn YOUR trust through our forthright and honest approach with each new Blog Post, Guide & Product we create...

Will Brendza

Will Brendza

  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Colorado at Boulder
  • Member of The 10th Mountain Division Hut Association
  • Certifications: Avalanche 1, WFR (expired), CPR (expired)
  • 8+ Years Researching, Writing, About Survival and Preparedness
  • Awards from Society of Professional Journalists
  • Winner of Camp Cold’s “Happy Camper” award in 2020
  • P.s. Do You Live In A 'Danger Zone' County?

    Find out now using my Danger Zone County List & Special Report it’s absolutely FREE.

    In minutes you’ll know EXACTLY where you stand and if you should be worried or not..

    Cooking over a rocket stove
    Get My 10 Steps To Basic Preparedness Video For FREE.
    Plus daily survival tips (unsubscribe anytime).