I've used my Buck 3in blade for about 15 yrs now. It's got a thick blade so you can put enough pressure on it to zip down the legs of big game to cape 'em. After it eventually got dull, I tried using several old sharpening stones and could get it sharp again but took forever. For about the last 8 yrs I've used the Lanske sharpening system. It takes a bit the first time you sharpen a blade on it to get the angle into the blade but once you get that initial angle on it, it takes only a few minutes to get it razor sharp again. Biggest thing with keeping a knife sharp is cut from "inside out". You don't want to cut hair, but split the hide....not only to keep the hair of your meet but to keep from dulling your knife. I've probably gutted and skun out 6-8 deer without hitting it with a steel. Like the Havalon Piranta as well but not for skinning, cause there's not backbone....great knife though.