You got yourself a shiny new foot-long army Bowie with a grippy diamond-textured handle, one that can pull down a bull and clear a forest. You keep admiring the beauty and craftsmanship and can’t wait to take it out with your fishing buddies … Woah stop there. Before you go any further. Did you check everything? Is it possible that you might not even be allowed to own that knife? That, you might be prosecuted for buying the knife and have committed a criminal offense by taking it out. Didn’t cross your mind, right? Welcome to knife Dos and Don’ts. This is a checklist you should always have in your back pocket. Some of them you already know, others you may find new and invaluable. So, let’s dive in.\nFirst Things First. Legal Check.\nThe knife laws in the United States vary from state to state, and they can be as different as chalk and cheese. So, make sure you read and understand your state’s knife laws before owning one or sheathing one out on you. Some states allow carrying OTF knives within set blade lengths and other specifications. Other states may not be as liberal. State laws are often written in cryptic English and can be hard to fathom even for trained experts. But you can find decrypted simple summarized versions online on tektogear.com. In your search engine, simply copy and paste this: “tektogear.com: name of state knife laws”So lesson here. Don’t go out and start buying or carrying knives without checking local knife laws. Do: Spend some time learning about the legal restrictions.\nDon’t Opt ‘Cheap’ Over Survival\nI stick that ‘don’t’ straight in the heading because that’s how vital this message is. If you’re looking for a knife that you want to count on for survival, then remove the price filter. You may find the best OTF knife on a budget, but to find a good Bowie under $50 that can save your day is near impossible. Don’t let price be a deciding factor when buying a knife that your survival depends on. Do: Look up hunting knives and switchblade OTF knives from reputed manufacturers. You may still find a great bargain there.\nKnife Life\nThere are many dos and don’ts when it comes to knife longevity and maintenance. Let’s take a look at the top ones. Never leave your mucky fixed, folding, and OTF knives in the sink. This might not only be dangerous for the nest person to do the dishes, it’s also unhealthy for the knife. This can cause the tip to go blunt or bend or break. And if you leave it for too long, the metal will start to oxidize and start rusting. Do: Wipe clean your knife as soon as you can, and dry it well before putting it back in the sheath. DON’T use your tactical knife as a pry bar to sharpen other knives unless it is specifically designed for such use. Chefs use kitchen knives as a pry because their knives are professionally sharpened (or replaced) regularly. Tactical knives are not honing rods.