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How-to: how do you sharpen a gut hook?

Sharpening a gut hook might look difficult, but it is not! In this how-to we will tell you which sharpening products you need and how you can sharpen your gut hook for razor-sharp results.

What is a gut hook?

A gut hook is a sharpened hook that is often added to the spine of the blade of a hunting knife. This hook is designed to cut open the belly of freshly shot game. A gut hook ensures that this task is a lot safer. It ensures you don't slip and end up piercing the intestines. Because the intestines contain a lot of bacteria that increase decay, you need to make sure you don't damage them.

In addition to cutting game you can use a gut hook to cut rope, to strip cables and to open a bottle of beer. Some outdoor enthusiasts use a gut hook as a small hook to remove a hot grill or pot from the fire. You see? Much more versatile than you might think at first. For that reason multi-tools are often also enhanced with a cutting hook. Read more about sharpening a multi-tool with a cutting hook.

Gut hook

Which sharpening products do I need to sharpen a gut hook?

You need a sharpening steel if you want to sharpen a gut hook. Keep in mind that the sharpening steel needs a smaller diameter than the diameter of the gut hook. Our range contains multiple small sharpening steels that will do the trick. The diamond particles on a diamond-coated sharpening steel quickly remove material. As such these sharpening steels are perfect when quickly sharpening a blunt gut hook. Ceramic sharpening steels are often finer and therefore remove less material. These sharpening steels are great if your gut hook is still relatively sharp. The sharpening results with a ceramic sharpening steel are therefore sharper than when using a coarse diamond-coated sharpening steel. We recommend first using a coarse sharpening steel to straighten the edge of the gut hook and sharpen it, after which you use a finer sharpening steel for razor-sharp results. This how-to also contains a selection of all sharpening steels that can be used when sharpening a gut hook.

How do I sharpen a gut hook?

After selecting the right sharpening products you place the sharpening steel against the sharpened part of the hook. So the slanted inside of the gut hook. Now move the sharpening steel over the sharpened part of the gut hook a couple times. Keep in mind that you hit the entire edge and therefore also sharpen at the right angle. As soon as you feel a so-called 'burr' on the back of the gut hook, the unsharpened part, you know that the edge is sharp. Turn the knife over and place the fine sharpening steel on top of the blade and move it up and down to remove the burr. Afterwards use the same fine sharpening steel and sharpen the sharpened part of the gut hook until it is razor-sharp. Remove the burr on the back of the blade and your gut hook can, once again, be used.

Check out all sharpening steels to sharpen a gut hook

Please note that the diameter of the sharpening steel is not bigger than the diameter of your gut hook!