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How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels 431

Jr. Member Posts: 76
How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« on: April 06, 2020, 06:16:58 PM »
Like the title says. I'm looking to get a cold steel tactical shovel. I'm wondering if my metal file can keep it sharp. Thanks!
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 8,241 I'm blue!
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2020, 06:24:33 PM »
Wouldn´t it be easier to find a large rock?

(I sharpen my hoe on curbstones).
Full Member Posts: 205
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2020, 07:02:06 PM »
Anything can sharpen lawnmower blades as they are fairly soft steel as they are only cutting grass after all. Tactical shovel? (Didn’t realise there was such a thing, what next, tactical toothpicks?) Could be made from anything but probably a harder steel than lawnmower blades. I will say that during the 30 day champ challenge last year I alternated between the vic swisschamp and a Wenger champ. The Wenger beat the vic hands down whenever a file was needed.


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Zombie Apprentice Posts: 14,541 Yoo-hoo, big summer blowout!
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2020, 07:13:03 PM »
It's probably too small for the job. :D

Hooked, like everyone else. ;)

All hail the hook!
No Life Club Posts: 1,341
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2020, 07:17:23 PM »
Anything can sharpen lawnmower blades as they are fairly soft steel as they are only cutting grass after all. Tactical shovel? (Didn’t realise there was such a thing, what next, tactical toothpicks?) Could be made from anything but probably a harder steel than lawnmower blades. I will say that during the 30 day champ challenge last year I alternated between the vic swisschamp and a Wenger champ. The Wenger beat the vic hands down whenever a file was needed.


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Yes, the tactical craze even includes shovels these days. :D

But to be honest, once upon a time in the trenches of WW1, the soldiers entrenching tool was a last ditch close quarter  weapon. With the edge sharpened up, it was used like a short battle ax. The Russian special forces supposedly used a short entrenching shovel like that, or so the Cold Steel catalogues stated when they were selling them. I guess if you live in a local that doesn't trust the citizens with firearms, a sharpened shovel  is better than a well baked biscuit.  Providing that you're in an occupation where you can carry a shovel around with you.

We've come a long way from WW1, and I'd think that if you have a stout walking stick, cricket bat, or a good hammer, or a medium to large crescent wrench, (spanner for our Brit Cousins,) or even a un-sharpened shovel, it would just be more expedient to just clobber the attacker like you were Babe Ruth aiming for deep left field.

With shovels being fairly soft steel, any decent file should do well. Depends on if you want just bread slicing ability, or will you shave in the morning with it? :think:

Don't get too serious, just enough will do.
Jr. Member Posts: 76
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2020, 07:29:50 PM »
The sharp edge on the shovel doubles for a light work machete or chopping wood, without giving up stuctural integrity. The sharp edges also compensate for it small size and light weight, allowing you to dig pretty fast. Also when hitting roots the sharp edges are particularly effective. Its also light enough to carry without any problems if you are camping. It can be used for defense but it has much more versatility than just that.
No Life Club Posts: 1,341
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2020, 07:49:04 PM »
The sharp edge on the shovel doubles for a light work machete or chopping wood, without giving up stuctural integrity. The sharp edges also compensate for it small size and light weight, allowing you to dig pretty fast. Also when hitting roots the sharp edges are particularly effective. Its also light enough to carry without any problems if you are camping. It can be used for defense but it has much more versatility than just that.

All very true. If the vegetation is light it should work out okay. I guess my own outlook is from when I went through boot camp, they had us dig foxholes, but they also gave us a whole block of instruction in the use of the entrenching tool as a weapon. This was the 1960's and the issued tool then had the fold down shovel and also the fold out pick on the backs. With the pick extended and locked down, it was used like a bayonet. It's hate to be on receiving end of it. For digging, we used it with the shovel folded out to 90 degrees to use the shovel like a how to break up the ground and scoop it out. Way faster than  digging conventionally.

Just out of curiosity, what part of the world are you in and what kind of flora are you dealing with?

Don't get too serious, just enough will do.
Hero Member Posts: 555 Wanted: Red Alox Tinker!!
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2020, 07:56:49 PM »
Frankly, why not get a regular size file (10-12") or a grinder wheel attachment for a power drill? Both would work better and much less effort than a tiny SAK file.
Rich

------------------
There's intelligent life in the universe;
I just don't know where.
Jr. Member Posts: 76
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2020, 08:34:11 PM »
Well its going to be more of a backpacking situation is the missouri ozarks so if can swing a larger file in an 111mm knife that would help with the amount and weight I have to carry. I want to sharpen the shovel if it gets dull from use.
Jr. Member Posts: 76
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2020, 08:44:50 PM »
Whats more, with copperhead snakes there, it is a good defense. The flat surface of the shovel gives you a better chance of bashing it to stun it, then you can behead it. Also you can throw it them too.
Sr. Member Posts: 394
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2020, 10:56:02 PM »
I love this site!  Who woulda thought sharpening a shovel could be so interesting!  :popcorn:   :salute:
No Life Club Posts: 1,418
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #11 on: April 07, 2020, 05:39:17 AM »
Like the title says. I'm looking to get a cold steel tactical shovel. I'm wondering if my metal file can keep it sharp. Thanks!

If it was all you had, I suppose you would make it work.  However, I would suggest the following:
  • Use full-size and or power tools to get the edge you want before heading out into the field.
  • I realize ounces count when you have to carry everything on your back, but if you expect to really use your edged tools enough on your trip to dull them significantly (not common in my experience, but YMMV), a small diamond hone would probably be worth carrying.  Little ones are available that are about the size of a credit card or pen, depending on the form factor you prefer.
  • Use your diamond hone to maintain your edges, rather than waiting until they get dull and then trying to resharpen.
No Life Club Posts: 1,264
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #12 on: April 07, 2020, 06:58:23 AM »
Alone Season 3 winner Zachary Fowler used a Victorinox Swisstool Spirit file to maintain his Cold Steel Special Forces Shovel edge.

So I'm sure it will work, but it will wear out. If it's just for filed touch up and not regular use then it might be ok for a good while
Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 21,337
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #13 on: April 07, 2020, 02:51:36 PM »

  • I realize ounces count when you have to carry everything on your back, but if you expect to really use your edged tools enough on your trip to dull them significantly (not common in my experience, but YMMV), a small diamond hone would probably be worth carrying.  Little ones are available that are about the size of a credit card or pen, depending on the form factor you prefer.


This ^^.  Things happen when out which makes a little stone a great addition for your kit.   :tu: 

Esse Quam Videri
Jr. Member Posts: 76
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #14 on: April 07, 2020, 06:34:25 PM »
If it was all you had, I suppose you would make it work.  However, I would suggest the following:
  • Use full-size and or power tools to get the edge you want before heading out into the field.
  • I realize ounces count when you have to carry everything on your back, but if you expect to really use your edged tools enough on your trip to dull them significantly (not common in my experience, but YMMV), a small diamond hone would probably be worth carrying.  Little ones are available that are about the size of a credit card or pen, depending on the form factor you prefer.
  • Use your diamond hone to maintain your edges, rather than waiting until they get dull and then trying to resharpen.

Can you do an image or amazon link for a tiny hone so I know what you are exactly talking about? Thanks!
Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 21,337
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #15 on: April 07, 2020, 06:47:06 PM »
DMT D3EFC 3-inch Dia-Sharp Sharpener comes to mind.  I have never used these but a search should turn up other options as well. 

Esse Quam Videri
No Life Club Posts: 1,418
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #16 on: April 08, 2020, 02:33:52 AM »
Can you do an image or amazon link for a tiny hone so I know what you are exactly talking about? Thanks!

Here is a set of three different grits of the DMT D3EFC that Aloha mentions:
https://www.amazon.com/DMT-D3EFC-Dia-Sharp-Extra-Fine-Diamond/dp/B00006IIO3/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=DMT+D3EFC&qid=1586303819&sr=8-1
Obviously, these are examples of flat hones with the "credit card" form factor.  Depending on your personal evaluation of weight vs. utility, you could even get away with just carrying one medium or fine grit stone, if you are willing to stay on top of maintaining a working (but not perfectly polished) edge.

Here is an example of a round hone with the "pen" form factor:
https://www.amazon.com/EZE-LAP-4-Inch-Diamond-Sharpener-Handle/dp/B000UVNT8Y/ref=sr_1_14?dchild=1&keywords=diamond%2Bhone&qid=1586303262&sr=8-14&th=1
No Life Club Posts: 3,881
Re: How good is the metal file for sharpening lawnmower blades or tactical shovels
« Reply #17 on: April 08, 2020, 05:47:00 AM »
Decent, but it would not be my go-to choice for field sharpening, and likely, I wouldn't even bother with a lawnmower blade due to its size. And besides, I've never had to sharpen my folding military surplus shovels.

While they are to eventually be replaced with something from DMT, this is what I use, typically with axes or really beat up secondhand knvies,  when edges are chipped, dinged, or blunt, and too far gone for my natural stones, synthetic oilstones, or ceramic hones. In other words, edging, not sharpening.   And they're passable. I actually used these to get an old 440C Buck 110 I had from dull as a cold chisel, to my desired sharpness, as my great-uncle had abused it quite heavily, and used a belt sander on it.

https://www.harborfreight.com/3-piece-2-inch-x-6-inch-diamond-hone-blocks-36799.html

 

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