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Published by deersniffer on 06 Feb 2012

Leased Dog Tracking In Iowa SF2017

Hi fellow Iowa hunters,

My name is Brian Hibbs. I live near Oxford in Johnson Co, Iowa. I have had legislation introduced to allow the use of a leashed dog to track wounded deer in Iowa. I have been working on this for several years. The proposed bill has made progress and did make it through the Iowa Senate the other day with a 13 yea and 0 nea vote. It now has to get through the Iowa House. I am told that there is opposition in the House by some Southern Iowa Representatives. They are concerned this bill will cause dogs to over run their properties and create trespassing problems. This makes no sense because the bill contains specific language that states the dog will be on a lead under the control of the handler and permission must be obtained prior to tracking on private property. The DNR has told me they do not oppose this practice and I believe Diane Ford of the DNR actually helped answer questions to move this bill through the Senate. The bill is labeled SF 2017. Please note I am not doing this to try and profit off of tracking or anything like that. I do breed tracking dogs and have about 1 litter a year. I have no problems finding homes for my pups because they are in high demand. They go throughout the country. I am doing this because it is another tool that can be used to recover a shot animal when the animal leaves a sparse blood trail or no blood trail at all and conventional tracking methods don’t work. In these situations a trained dog can improve the success rate of recovery quite a bit. If you live in Iowa, I am asking for your support. If you could take the time to contact your House Representative and show your support I would really appreciate it. This could be done through a phone call or email. If you don’t know your Representative, you can find them through the Iowa legislation website. This would especially be helpful in the Southern Counties. I have included below an email I sent to the Representatives that I believe are opposing this bill. I also have included a letter written by John Jeanneney to our legislators. John has been tracking in New York State for many years and is a pioneer in introducing tracking in the states. He has written a couple excellent books pertaining to bowhunting, the use of leashed tracking dogs, and tracking wounded animals. He has had much experience in this field and does a good job explaining the misconceptions that opponents come up with to try and find unrealistic negatives about the practice. He and his wife run a website called “born to track”. I thank you once again for your support and if you have any questions please feel free to contact me.

 

Brian Hibbs

Oxford, IA

www.trackingteckels.com

319-430-8065

 

February 1, 2012

 

Dear Representatives,

 

My name is Brian Hibbs and I live in Johnson County near the town of Oxford. I have been working to get the use of tracking a wounded deer with a leashed dog legalized for several years. In July of 2010 I presented a petition to the Iowa DNR’s NRC showing how this practice is used in many states and that it is another tool to locate a deer that has been shot and cannot be found through traditional tracking methods. I presented information that tracking a deer with a dog on a leash under the complete control of a handler has proven in many other states to be a positive tool and created no extra problems for enforcement agencies in those states. Realize this is just a hunter tracking a deer like he would now with the only difference being a tracking dog ahead of him on a leash helping him to find sign he may normally miss. This petition was unanimously approved and the rulemaking process was set to go into affect. The DNR asked me if I would mind waiting until early 2011 to start the process because there wouldn’t be enough time to get the rule into the books for the fall of the 2010 hunting season and it would make it easier to just start it the following year. I agreed it would be ok to do this as long as we did what had been approved by the NRC petition. The next year rolled around and I discovered that Gov. Branstad had taken office and that he was changing the way things had been done in the past. I was told he was not opposed to this practice, just that he wanted everything to now go before his desk. This nullified all the work I had done and halted the rulemaking that should have been a done deal.

This year I had Rep. Willems propose this bill once again. I am told the bill passed out of the full Senate Natural Resources and Environment Committee yesterday (1-31-12). It is assigned as SF 2017. After speaking with Rep. Rayhons and Rep. Smith they have informed me that many of the Representatives from Southern Iowa oppose this bill because they are worried about people overrunning their land with dogs. This proposed bill has specific language addressing these concerns. It states the dog will be on a leash under full control of the handler. The bill also states the tracker will need to obtain permission from any landowner involving private property before tracking on that property. I don’t think the bill can be any more cut and dry than that. If unethical people want to break the rules they will whether it is legal or not. If you are concerned about dogs over running your properties maybe you should address coyote hunting dogs that run wherever they want uncontrolled by a leash and people chasing them in vehicles. I understand that this is a popular practice in Southern Iowa.

I ask for your support with this proposed bill. The language is cut and dry about free-running dogs and trespassing. Please do not punish the rest of us Iowan’s in the other counties if you do not trust your citizen’s in the southern counties to follow the rules. As I stated before this practice has proven to be no problem for the enforcement agencies in other states. Diane Ford of the DNR has told me that they are not opposed to this rule as they were educated on it through my previous petition. Please ask her and she will confirm this. I am including a letter from John Jeanneney of New York as of to his experience with tracking in his state. Tracking with a leashed dog has probably been going on in New York State longer than any other state.

 

Sincerely,

Brian Hibbs

Oxford, IA

319-430-8065

Date: January 6, 2012

 

 

Dear Representative Rayhons,

 

Since I am a resident of New York State, I venture to comment on the proposed Iowa leashed tracking dog bill only because I have had 36 years of experience with leashed tracking dogs. Perhaps I can offer some useful insights. In 1976 New York’s Department of Environmental Conservation issued me a research permit to investigate the feasibility of using leashed tracking dogs to find wounded big game. This method was being used in Germany and other European countries, but in the US it appeared to many hunters and non-hunters that deer hunting and dogs did not mix in any way.  The decline of deer populations that came with the use of dogs to drive deer to the gun, was well remembered.

 

What I proposed in New York State was something very different from deer hunting with dogs. My research demonstrated that in New York leashed tracking dogs could find mortally wounded deer when hunters could not track them by eye. The value of a good dog is that he can follow the individual scent of a wounded deer, even when there is no visible blood.

 

1986, after a long period of experimentation, the New York State Legislature passed an enabling bill to establish the use of leashed tracking dogs on a licensed basis. Since then thousands of deer have been found by licensed trackers like me.  Variations of the New York law have now been approved in a total of 21 states where the use of tracking dogs had previously been illegal.

 

In a state like Iowa, where professionally guided hunts are an important source of state revenue, the tracking dog would maximize an outfitter’s capability to use a wildlife resource in an ethical, conservation-conscious way while satisfying the expectations of his client.

 

As other states have considered and ultimately approved leashed tracking dogs,

certain questions and doubts have been raised. Below are responses that have been accepted as valid:

:

1. Experience with the use of leashed tracking dogs has shown that this has

not been used as a cover when  poaching deer. The deer jacker knows that there are better ways of doing this.

 

2. The availability of a tracking dog does not encourage irresponsible shooting any more than availability of a retriever encourages irresponsible long range shots at pheasants and waterfowl.

3. Some have wondered whether a tracking dog on a leash would be illegally used to drive deer out of heavy cover to posted hunters. Anyone who has handled a leashed dog in the woods knows how impractical this would be. There have been no reports that this is being done.

To sum up, the use of leashed tracking dogs to find wounded big game has now been time-tested around the United State for many years, It is not a crazy, new idea. Writing as a man who has taken over a thousand volunteer deer calls, and who has dedicated much of his life to this cause, I urge you to give the Iowa tracking dog bill your serious consideration.

 

Sincerely yours,

 

John Jeanneney, Vice President, United Blood Trackers

1584 Helderberg Trail

Berne, NY 12023

518-872-1779

 

 

John Jeanneney

born-to-track.com

now on Facebook!

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Published by bargyle6550 on 02 Feb 2012

TEAM TOUGHMAN SHOOT 50/50 RIVERSIDE ARCHERY

Riverside Archers
Proudly Presents
The 8th Annual team tough man
Registration – 8:00am
Tournament – 9:00am
2-Member Team Shoot
30 Unmarked 3-D Targets
Scoring 10-8-5
“Best Arrow Scores”
$$$ CASH PAY OUT $$$
1st through 5th place pending # of shooters
All ties will have a shoot off!!
Entry Fee: $60 per team
Cubs: $5.00 per shooter
Snacks & Lunch Available
For directions and more information go to:
www.riversidearchers.com
* NO ALCOHOL ON RANGE DURING TOURNEMENT PLAY *

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Published by huntermt on 30 Jan 2012

reality hunting

I have been waiting for a reality based hunting show to come out on on of the networks for a long time, I want something I can be involved in and go online and vote for hunts I liked and recommend thing I want to see. I recently stumbled upon Outlanders on the Outdoor channel and although the hunt I watched didn’t appeal to me, the idea behind the newish series is what I wanted. They take everyday hunters and build an eposide around their choice hunt. In the hunters everyday honey hole. Next season you can enter in a drawing to have this be you, they opened up like 10 spots. I love this! I cant wait to see me and my buddies on tv.

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Published by dirtchick00c on 29 Jan 2012

Great NW Archery Burglarized

Great Northwest Archery in Puyallup, Washington was burglarized on January 27, 2012 and lost more than a dozen new bows valued at thousands of dollars. 

PLEASE – If you saw anything, cars, suspicious activity at Skookum Archery Club between 8:30PM and 8:30AM please contact the owner Doug at 253-841-0991.

The stolen goods included new Hoyt Rampages, Rampage XT’s, Prohawks, Vector 32’s, Vector 35’s and 3 Strother bows.  Also like new items included a shiny, red PSE, two fully set up Hoyt Camo Matrix’s and a fully set up Black Carbon Element in its case.

PLEASE – If you see any of these items for sale on Craigslist, E-bay, the archery forums or pawn shops, contact Doug immediately! 

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Published by ScentBlockMLB93 on 19 Jan 2012

My First Deer EVER! With my BEAR CHARGE!!!!

December 3, 2011

The night before I had a very difficult time falling asleep due to wondering if there was going to be a huge amount of hunters around me using muzzleloaders when I only had my bow (Bear Charge.) Well when the alarm went off early in the morning I woke up with a strange feeling of energy with only getting about 3 hours of sleep. I then had to drive about 30 minutes to this small gas station/check in station to meet my brother so we could go through the gate. He is a memeber of Izaac Walton’s. A small club with a pond, woods and has many other activities. Well after sitting there for about 30 minutes I called him and it turns out that his truck won’t start. I didn’t want to go back home after driving that far and I knew this would be a good morning because we had just got about 4 inches of snow two days earlier. Well this private ground borders state ground so I parked on a bridge right next to some powerlines. I had to walk about a mile up and down some ridges until I reached one of our stands we placed back in the summer. I finally got set up in the stand about 5 minutes before daylight. This stand was placed midway up a ridge overlooking a bending creek. Well when it became daylight a few minutes later I didn’t see anything. I heard 3-4 gunshots a little ways off across the salamonie and then there was 4 does running across a ridge to my left about 50 yards away. All of them stopped about 5 yards away from one of my stands on that ridge that I hunted in gun season. I was getting mad as they started to just stay within 20 yards of my stand on that ridge. I kept thinking to myself “why didn’t I sit there this morning”! Then when they all stepped into the clearing I noticed that they were all shooters. Then the biggest doe started to make her way down the ridge quartering towards me and stopped at about 40 yards. Soon as I stand up and go to draw back a squirrel broke the limb it was sitting on and spooked the deer. Well they took off behind me and stopped around 110 yards away. So I sat back down and I got a text from my brother and was asking me if I had seen anything. Soon as I told him about the 4 does and put my phone back in my jacket I notice something in the corner of my eye and it was a big doe about 8 yards away. I grabbed my bow but couldn’t draw back because her head was turned sideways towards me and I kept thinking “turn your head, turn your head!” Well soon as she turned her head I drew back and put my pin right on the pump station and slowly went to release then she started to walk away and couldn’t get a shot. At this point I was ready to throw in the towel and give up on deer hunting in general because that was a for sure gimmee. Then I got out my grunt call and grunted a few times and about 5 minutes later there was 9 does coming down the ridge right in front of me. I started thinking I might be able to get my first deer after all. It was one big mature doe with 8 yearlings/ small does. Well they were just grazing and slowly moving around on this ridge then out of nowhere the mature doe started running down the hill towards me. She stopped at 38 yards standing towards me then she turned broadside and started walking along the creek. I drew back and waited on her to stop and I couldn’t figure out how far she was then when she stopped behind a tree I studied the distance from the stand to her and I figured around 40 yards. She stepped out from the tree and I put my 40 pin right on the lungs, exhaled and released. I heard the arrow smack something but thought I missed, when she took off running and then I noticed the blood pouring out of her. I felt the biggest adrenaline rush of life and just thanked god for letting me harvest this doe, more importantly my first deer and it was with my bow. I sat down and called my brother and he rushed out to the stand looking like he was going to war, he had his muzzleloader, glock, and his gut knife on his belt. I climbed down and we started to walk over towards where she was at when I shot. I looked and looked for my arrow and was having a hard time finding it. Then I saw part of the viens in the leaves and when I pulled it out it was soaked in blood. My brother asked me where I hit her and I told him a little bit back farther than the heart and a little high. He sniffed the arrow and he said that he didn’t smell guts. We started to track the blood trail and it was quite a easy one thanks to the NAP HellRazor. We came up on her in the creek and she was deader than a doorknob. He looked at me and said you just shot a swamp donkey of a doe. She only ran 40 yards from where I shot her. After gutting her I just sat there thinking this is what I have been waiting for all this time and it was the best feeling that I have ever felt. That is when I knew I had bow hunting whitetails in my blood for the rest of my life.

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Published by GSback on 14 Jan 2012

Cold Dark Practice

Just a few tips for practicing on a cold dark morning:

1. Light the target with a work light that is set next to it.                                                                  

2. Get a headlamp and wear it a little to the left on your forhead (or right if you’re left handed). Nothing else lights up the sight better. Also, buy lithium batties. Only because they will continue to run the light down to 40 below.

3. Buy an arrow puller.

4. Buy a better arrow puller.

5. Invent a better arrow puller.

Arrows have a way of cementing themselves into targets in cold weather.

6. Get all your gear and clothing set up the night before. The less time you spend in the  morning figuring things out (especially in a groggy state), the more time you can spend shooting. 

7.If you have to drive to a shooting range. Dress up totally ready, including your release and other accesseries before you go out the door. Set things up in the car so that when you get to the range all you need to get is the  bow and arrows. For me anyway, it’s psychalogically easier to get going in freezing cold weather when there are few things to do.

8. Have whatever acceceries you need easily acessable with your gloves or mits on. Put things in big pockets or hanging on a belt loop, etc.

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Published by TeamRarebreed on 02 Jan 2012

Free Turkey Hunt!!

Free Turkey Hunt Giveaway!!!!
Go to www.classycouponclippers.com for a chance to win a hunt with Team Rarebreed in the heart of the bluegrass.

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Published by huntingchic13 on 02 Jan 2012

Traceable Arrow

Me an my engineering team are working on a traceable arrow used for hunting. would you please answer this survey and give us feedback. thnk you

1. Do you own a bow and arrow(s)? Yes/No
If yes continue on, if no stop here.
2. Do you use them for:
A. Target practice B. Hunting C. Archery D. other
3. How many arrows do you loose on a regular basis per hunting trip and/or practice?
A. 1 B. 2 C. more D. none
4. What percentage of your time is lost during hunting and practicing when you have to search for an arrow?
A. 25% B.50% C. 75% D. more than 75%
5. How much money do you loose on a regular basis from lost arrows?
A. $20 B. $40 C. $60 D. more
6. Would you be willing to pay extra money for an arrow you can trace faster?
Yes or No
7. If yes to #6, then how much more than the cost of an ordinary arrow would you be willing to pay?
A. $10 more B. $15 more C. $20 more D. over $20 more
8. (Optional) Do you have any suggestions/preferences that would make the arrow more easily traced? If so, please share idea(s) in blanks below
__________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ ______

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Published by admin on 12 Dec 2011

CHECK CHECK DOUBLE CHECK CHECK AGAIN

CHECK CHECK DOUBLE CHECK CHECK AGAIN

by Ted Nugent

Alright, I better write this while I’m still seething. I am so angry my blood boils, my eyes are bloodshot, I twitch, turning beet red, lips pursed so tight it hurts, fuming, seeing red, snarling, forehead furrowed deeply with a full body scowl to scare the devil himself. Did I mention that I am really, really angry?
The first word in this piece is alright. Well, nothing is all right, I assure you. Anything but.
Being that I fancy myself Mr. Cocked Locked and absolutely ready to ROCK, Captain Detail, Mr. Smarty Pants Know it all master of allthings shoot, hunt, ambush sniper world, it is with great pain, humility and consternation that I am compelled to share with you how Mr. Murphy can sneak into our psyche no matter how dialed in, prepared or attentive we may otherwise dedicate ourselves to be.
Personally, at this point in time, I suck.
Okay, in the real world of meaningful priorities like God, family, health, country and freedom, my painful evening on deerstand last night doesn’t really qualify as all that upsetting. We miss. Get over it. Yet here I am, head hung and forlorn like little Teddy just lost his favorite puppy dog.
Here’s how it unraveled; Throttling onward nonstop with much gusto for my truly inspiring 2011-2012 hunting season, I had a wonderful meeting with my SpiritWild Ranch hunters as the rain poured down on our little chunk of Texas hunting heaven. Everyone was excited to be at our special camp with the barometer and temperature plunging, making for some optimal critter encounter conditions.
Master guide Paul Wilson organized the guys to head out for their killer blinds, and I decided to return to my Ranch King portable tucked into a nice jungle of cedars and tangled blowdowns on the edge of the big hay field.
With rain pelting my snug little coop, I smacked away on my laptop writing more invigorating celebrations of our beloved hunting lifestyle, not really expecting shooter beasts to arrive in the pouring rain.
Next thing I know, a highly desirable, elusive “Alberta” whitetail 10 point is smack dab in front of me eating corn at the Hang Em High feeder before it even went off. YIKES!
I’ve never had a shot at this particular buck that looks like he belongs in the forests of Alberta, Canada, and I was about to implode with excitement at the opportunity before me.
I carefully turned on the SpiritWild vidcam, silently set down my laptop, reached for my bow, then zoomed in on the trophy beast.
He was joined by his girlfriend, then out of nowhere, a spotted axis doe poked her head out of the scrub into my little clearing.
Axis! Axis deer are so incredibly elusive on SpiritWild Ranch that we are lucky to get a quick glimpse at them but few times each year. I knew that if a doe was here, the herd must be close behind.
One by one, the majestic Chital deer emerged, including monster stag after monster stag, right there in front of me, within 20 yards. I captured all their antics as they jockeyed for position until the biggest baddest buck went broadside.
Like a million times before, I picked a spot, gracefully drew back my arrow, and let er rip for a gimme trophy of a lifetime.
And ladies and gentlemen, the winner of the embarrassing NumbNut of The Year Award goes to, (drumroll) Teeeeeddddd Nuuuuuugent!!
My orange Lumenok told no lie as it zinged six inches under the huge stags brisket. At about 18 yards ya all!
I’m here to tell you I was supremely aghast. With my Robin Hood sniper arrow routine going so beautifully all season, how can this possibly be?
As the sickness in my stomach began to subside, I nocked an arrow in the garage, took aim at the Big Green target at 15 yards and sent two arrows touching each other, SIX INCHES LOW!
I cradle and protect my bow with tender loving care each and every day. How the sights could have gotten that far off from one day to the next will forever be a mystery. But since I have written and raved about it so many times over the years, I may want to obey my own rules of bowhunting and take a “feel” shot before each hunt, and I think I shall.
It’s not only an archery thing, but as we all know, each year somebody at many camps somewhere will experience the heartbreak of a bad shot for inexplicable reasons. Inexplicable that is until we admit that we all know things can go wrong, so we really oughtta plan on them and do everything in our power to keep them from happening.
Under most conditions, there will be an opportunity to take that pre-hunt test shot with both bow and or gun so we can be certain everything is tight, sighted in and in order before that long awaited moment of truth on the beast.
Mr. Murphy is a predator, an indiscriminate, soulless, uncaring predator, and as his prey, we best be aware that he is ubiquitous, so check, check and double check, then check again to keep the punk at bay.
I’m on my way to my stand now, and I just took a shot to be sure I am ready. ZI am ready, and vow to always be ready forevermore.

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Published by archerchick on 11 Dec 2011

Choosing Knives and Sharpeners – By Tim Dehn


Bowhunting World June 1990

Choosing Knives and Sharpeners – By Tim Dehn

Like your bow and broadhead -tipped arrows, a good hunting
knife is standard equipment for bowhunters. Here’s a
look at the wide range available, along with other cutting tools and
sharpeners designed for the sportsman.

I’d owned and lost more than a dozen  jackknives before I bought my first hunt-
ing knife, but I hadn’t learned much about cutting tools. The knife I bought as a
teen had a long, narrow blade more suited to stabbing than cutting, and a smooth and slippery plastic handle. I learned later that the tang collected blood and din, the leather
sheath collected odor, and the gleaming blade wasn’t rust proof.

Today, I use two hunting knives, worlds apart in form but both capable of chores from
digging a broadhead loose from a log to field dressing and butchering big game.
The knife I love to show off is a fixed-blade model that retails for about $95. It has a
heavy, stainless-steel blade with thumb serrations on the back and a groove for my index finger below. The polished stainless guard and hilt flow smoothly into the tough Micarta handle. The knife is a work of art that feels like part of your hand when you use it.

But I rarely do. That knife weighs nearly a pound and on hunting trips it’s usually back at camp or in the truck. The knife I carry is a folding lock blade from Western Cutlery with a green, checkered Valox handle and simple Cordura sheath. The 3 1/2-inch stainless steel blade is longer than I need and yet the knife and sheath together weigh under four ounces.

There’s more than a dozen companies producing folding hunting knives today and I
wasn’t surprised to find Field Contributor Deano Farkas also prefers that style, though
his Lightweight Lockback by Schrade incorporates a gut hook cut into the back of the drop-point blade.

Farkas said it is impossible to over-emphasize the importance of a sharp knife that will
hold an edge. He has field-dressed more than 100 whitetails, and adds “Ninety-nine percent of them have been by myself. You usually don’t have anyone to help you hold the legs, and often by the time you get out of the stand and track your deer it’s pretty late at night.

With the gut hook, I’m not sticking them in the stomach under conditions like that .”
Lightweight folding knifes aren’t the best for splitting bone, but that’s not how Farkas
uses it. He cuts around the rectum and pulls it out, rather than splitting the pelvis to get at it.

“I’ve found if you split the pelvis in the field, and you have to drag the deer any distance, you get a lot more dirt in the body cavity.” Farkas reaches up inside the chest cavity to cut the windpipe and to free the diaphragm from the ribcage. “That’s another thing I like about a folding knife. With a fixed blade, I’ve often cut myself doing this. With a folding knife I can hold the blade almost closed as I slip it inside, then flip it open once I’m in position to start cutting.”

The nylon sheath most hunting knives come with today may not look as nice as
leather, but it’s far more practical for scent-conscious bowhunters. “Even if you try to
wipe your blade off, some blood is going to get in the sheath and that can really start to
stink,” Farkas said. “When my nylon sheath gets dirty, I just wash it off with a little baking soda and warm water.”

Back home in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Farkas uses other knives to skin and butcher
big game. “I do my own deer, 100 percent. A buddy and I have invested in a meat grinder, a meat slicer, the whole bit. I hang the deer on a gambrel in the garage or the backyard, weather permitting. Then I skin it, cut the two front quarters off, take the loins out, split the deer down the backbone, and take the ribs and hind quarters off.

Farkas owns a D-shaped meat saw, but said he usually uses a PVC-plastic pipe saw to
split the backbone. The wider blade doesn’t bind even when he’s working alone, and he
said the sport saws popular with hunters today would probably work just as well.
I’d have to agree, judging by the way my Gerber folding saw zips through hard and
softwoods as I’m clearing shooting lanes.

Like similar models from Game Tracker and Coghlans, the folding saw has a lightweight plastic handle and an aggressive tooth design that cuts on the return stroke to minimize pinching. In my treestand, it adds a foot to my reach as I zip twigs and small branches out of the way. And at ground level, I’ve huffed my
way through a 4-inch dead oak in under two minutes.

Anyone who has spent much time in front of display cases knows hunting knives today
come in an almost infinite variety that makes categorizing them very difficult. You could call the Buck Fieldmate a sheath knife, but don’t picture a staghorn handle and harness leather sheath. This 1989 introduction has a finger—grooved olive drab Kraton handle, a camo nylon sheath and a 5 1/2-inch blade we’ll let the people at Buck Knives explain. The back of it features “an emergency saw for cutting wood, metal or ice and a sharpened, serrated clip for cutting rope, wet or dry.”

Try to describe the Game Skinner from Outdoor Edge, and you better have a picture
with you. David Bloch designed the unique cutting tool as a senior design project in engineering school. He got his degree in mechanical engineering, but he has been using it at the cutlery firm he now heads in Boulder, Colorado.

“My Game Skinner combines the T—handle grip of a push knife, the blade of an Es-
kimo Ulu, and a gut hook. It ’s designed to do the whole job on animals as big as elk — gutting, skinning and quartering.” While the Game Skinner has a thick, 3-
inch blade Bloch said you can pound through a bull elk’s pelvis, the 2 5/ 8-inch blade on the Game Trapper will easily handle whitetails and mule deer. Both knives can be reversed in the hand as you are pulling on hide. “You just keep the blade outward of your fingers as you work and you don’t have to sit it down and risk losing it or getting it dirty,” Bloch explained.

Like most hunting knives on the market today, those from Outdoor Edge use rust-
proof stainless steel blades that are easy to care for but so hard that sharpening on natural stones can be difficult. That’s one reason for the popularity of the diamond embedded whetstones like those from Diamond Machining Technology (DMT).

DMT used to build diamond segments for the stone-cutting industry, Elizabeth Powell
told Bowhunting World, and when most of that work went overseas in the late l970’s she and husband Dave sought other markets for the company’s expertise in industrial diamonds. “Our first knife sharpener was a round, 3-inch Diamond Whetstone that
looked a lot like a hockey puck. We were making grinding wheels at the time and had to cut the center out, and we sent some of those to L.L. Bean & Company in Freeport, Maine.

They liked how fast they sharpened knives, but not the shape .” It wasn’t long before DMT’s Marborough, Massachusetts, plant was cranking out rectangular Diamond Whetstones from 3-inch to 12-inch, all with a unique, polka-dot appearance because the diamond-embedded metal has circles of plastic interrupting it. “Our pat-
ented process gives you an interrupted cut that is much more aggressive than a continuous surface. The plastic dots provide a place for the filings to collect and let the diamond portion cut like the teeth on a saw.”

Anyone investing in a Diamond Whetstone ought to also invest in the time it takes to
read the instructions. These “stones” are used with water, not oil, and a light touch is
best. “Depending on the type of steel, Diamond Whetstones can sharpen from 10 to 100 times faster than natural stones,” Powell said. “We tell people to stroke their diamonds, don’t hack them.”

While the smaller DMT models will fit in carrying sheaths, hunters may prefer the
Diafold models because of their built-in handles. Originally produced in round, rod styles ideal for touch up, the Diafolds are also sold with 4-inch Diamond Whetstones capable of restoring the edge to any hunting knife. Offered in fine, coarse and extra coarse, the fine is the most popular because it is easy to use without removing too much material from the blade. “You really just need a single Diamond Whetstone,” Powell acknowledged. “You can get a super clean edge with just the fine even if
it takes a little longer that way. And we don’t sell our Diamond Broadhead Sharpener in anything but fine, because broadheads don’t get that dull .”

The broadhead sharpener from DMT uses a pair of 3-inch Diamond Whetstones on an
angle-adjustable plastic base. Depending on what you spend for broadheads or replacement blades, it could pay for itself in a couple seasons.

Broadhead hones are also available from Bear Archery dealers, because Bear offers
hones with natural or ceramic stones from TruAngle. New for 1990, Bear’s own Check-
point Broadhead Sharpener combines carbide cutting wheels with an Arkansas Stone on a comfortable composite handle.

Sharpening Guides

Firms that build sharpeners are also beginning to offer sharpening guides, recognizing that in today’s world many of us didn’t learn how to put the right angle on a cutting
tool at our father ’s knee. Two I’ve seen in use are sharpener systems from Lansky and GATCO, the latter an acronym for the Great American Tool Company. Both firms team a selection of oil stones in plastic holders with a knife-sharpening guide that adjusts for different angles.

The Lansky honing guide can be hand-held or mounted on its base and bolted to a work-bench. With the knife blade clamped in it, a rod is attached to one of the hones and then placed through a slot in the guide. With a series of smooth, even strokes you can quickly put a uniform edge on one side of the knife, then flip the clamp 180 degrees to finish the job.

GATCO uses synthetic oil stones it claims are more uniform and faster—cutting than most natural stones. The stones are mounted in color-coded plastic handles and the gold-anodized guide rods slide back into the handles for storage. GATCO lets you start with a single stone system, choose one with three or five synthetic stones, or invest in the Diamond Hone Sharpening System and really put an edge on your hunting knives fast.

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