If you are to choose between kydex and leather knife sheath, there are a few things to consider.
A good sheath is an essential piece of safety equipment for anyone who carries a fixed blade. Basically, it does not matter how good your knife is if you have an unsatisfactory sheath. If you can’t use it comfortably, it just isn’t worth it. These two kinds of sheaths are good, they have their pros and they also have their cons especially if you want to keep your knife looking nice and shiny, you probably won’t opt into choosing a kydex sheath. It has a tendency to scratch particularly if it’s a tight fitting sheath with a powder coated blade. Imagine when you are outdoors working on something that has dirt or tree bark on it. It’s inevitable that some of the dirt or sand will stick to the knife that could potentially scratch the blade when slid in and out of the kydex sheath.
The sheath plays an essential role in protecting the knife as well as keeping it close ready at a moment’s notice. Leather knife sheath has long been the choice of many outdoorsmen. It adds more to that bushcrafty look you are going for while also being extremely functional. However, leather is not waterproof and could potentially dull or damage your nice carbon steel blade if you don’t do something about it. So, here’s a way on how to care for your leather knife sheath to make it last for years.
An untreated leather knife sheath has a tendency to dry out, crack and is ultimately vulnerable to water damage. A popular leather treatment that extends the longevity of the knife sheath is beeswax. It is an organic product that can be used to condition, finish edges, and waterproof leather. It repels water, thus, making it waterproof. It also keeps leather soft and supple. There are also other products that are used for leather treatment such as Mink Oil, Saddle Soap or Sno Seal.
Leather is processed animal skin, and animal skin has pores, so once you apply products onto your leather sheath, it will go right in. It’s important not to make the product too hot, otherwise, once it dries out, it will most likely crack. That means that you will have to care for your sheath if you want it to last for years.
Wipe Off Excess Everything
Religiously wipe off any type of fluids or excess moisture that are visibly seen on your leather. You have to take note that leather is permeable and could absorb water easily that will eventually stain your leather. Remove any traces of water from the leather immediately using a clean flannel cloth or sponge to avoid this from happening. Do not try to blow dry it as you might accidentally overdo this that could cause hardening or cracking of the leather.
Avoid Scuffs and Scrapes
This is not optional. Scuffs and scrapes are an utmost leather enemy when it comes to longevity and general leather care. However, as an outdoorsman, this error is inevitable. There still are ways to fix scuffs and scrapes though. The use of a household hair dryer can also be effective in applying heat onto the leather to activate the oils that have been applied on the leather. Keep in mind to place a decent distance from the dryer to the leather for about 10 – 12 inches. While doing this, you also have to massage the oils back to the leather to achieve the desired result.
Keep It Away From The Sun
Being in the bush can be hot sometimes especially when you are working under the heat of the sun without a shade. When not in use, avoid placing your sheath in hot or extremely dry places like the dashboard of your truck for a long period of time. The sun will dry out the leather taking off its suppleness and eventually the leather could peel off really easily.
Want to achieve that bushcrafty look? Check out The Knife Connection for various choices of leather sheaths. And if you have any questions about knives and sheaths, please let us know at [email protected]