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Chakma

Joined
Oct 8, 2006
Messages
2,097
Kukries come with a chakma and a karda.

If I understand the terminology, The karda is a utility knife. The chakma is a sharpening steel. There is nothing wrong with that. Except…

Once upon a time I helped prepare a feast. I brought a chief knife and a pairing knife. I brought a steel. “That should do the job,” says I. Boy, was I wrong. My first job was to disarticulate a hundred chickens. The rest of the day was a nightmare. It turns out that, once my knife is dull, a butcher’s steel is useless.

I thought about this lesson when I encountered Himalayan Imports. Isn’t the kukri a rough use tool? It seems to me that a lot of what the kukri is good for is harder on a knife than cutting chickens.

If I set up a good forest/jungle tool, I’d include a small knife. And I’d include something like the Columbia River Knife and Tool 2851 Pelvic Tool and Sharpener. (I hope that doesn’t break any rules.) It’s not a steel, it’s a diamond sharpener. It has rounded edges to sharpen recurves. It has a wedge shape to split a pelvis…or do similar rough work tasks.

Am I missing something? It seems to me a tool like the PVS beats a traditional chakma all hollow.
 
Joined
May 6, 2008
Messages
5,978
I'm certain you already know this, but the chakma doesn't remove metal, it pushes it. From my experience, if you employ the chakma often during knife use it really does maintain an edge very well. If the edge get's too diminished, you will need something abrasive to bring it back.

I have a blended convex edge on my HI khukri's. So the sharpener you have (unless rolled) would not be ideal for me. However, a chakma and some 320 grit sandpaper would be ideal for me.
 
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
Messages
5,247
You will probably also find that the karda is not that great as a utility knife. Of the dozen or so I have I think one or two actually sharpened up nice. As you note the khukri is a hard use knife. The chakma is used to smooth out and align the edge if it rolls when being heavily used. It doesn't sharpen the knife, it just aligns the edge. I'm sure that the sharpener would be very handy.

IMO, the kamis devote their time and efforts to the khuk and the other two utility pieces are not as good.

Some people do replace them with a diamond rod or stone and a different small knife. It all depends on what you want with your kit.
 
Joined
Oct 8, 2006
Messages
2,097
I'm certain you already know this, but the chakma doesn't remove metal, it pushes it. From my experience, if you employ the chakma often during knife use it really does maintain an edge very well. If the edge get's too diminished, you will need something abrasive to bring it back.

I have a blended convex edge on my HI khukri's. So the sharpener you have (unless rolled) would not be ideal for me. However, a chakma and some 320 grit sandpaper would be ideal for me.

That's my point. Somebody here may be good enough to use a knife until it's dull and then sharpen it with a steel. I paid close attention and I'm not one of them.

Sandpaper works as well.

OTOH, I like a no-fuss small knife and sharpener riding with my big knife.

Dealer's choice.
 
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