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Old 12-11-2006
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When I started scuba (before sailing) I started with my sheath knife down by my ankle because that's where we were taught to put it. And then I lost one because my foot fouled in something and when I pulled it free, the knife stayed behind without me noticing it.
I since shifted the scuba knife to military style, on a chest strap with the point up and the handle down, so either hand can release it and pull it free. (There's a patent catch on it to lock it in, still one-handed.) But for sailing, there are too many lines and things to foul on your chest. If I put it on the PFD harness under the PFD, I couldn't reach it with both hands.
So...I just settle for a smaller knife, which is plenty good enough for sailing, on a belt sheath. It doesn't get in the way much, haven't yet found anything else that would work better unless it was somehow "built in" to the clothing. And while I was willing to modify my bib pants (added a chest pocket wide enough to hold a folded chart or a beverage) I'm not willing to modify "everything" as opposed to having a knife on a belt, that can go around anything I'm wearing.
I drilled a hole in the top of the handle and added a loop of bungee cord. In the sheath, the cord is snapped down "under" the sheath, so it can't fall out but can be pulled free easily. Out of the sheath, the loop makes a good wrist lanyard, so I can't lose it overboard. Or, down to the deck from aloft.
Some of these locking folding knives with a little assist knob that you can flip open with one hand certainly look nice, I just stopped and said "You know, I've already got more knives than I use" and put a spare to good use.
Offhand I agree about stainless being the wrong steel, but there are many kinds of stainless. I'm willing to trade that off with the ability of stainless to stay clean and hold a "good enough" sharp edge in the sheath. My kitchen knives are carbon steel, but that's also because there's a stick in the block.
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