How to Knap Flint

How to Knap FlintThe best edged stone tools, such as knives, spearheads, and axes, are made of flint. This makes the process of sharpening flint, which is called "knapping," a useful survival skill. After all, most people do not have the luxury of deciding to bring a full tool kit with them into a survival situation.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Round or ovoid stone to use as a hammer
  • Elongated, flat stone with a point to use as a chisel. Substitute a similarly shaped piece of bone or wood if you have one.
Step 1
Go out and find flint to start working with. Flint is a sedimentary cryptocrystal, and it can be found in and around chalk and limestone outcroppings. While relatively common, flint is either there or it is not. If a given site does not show any flint after a good look around, move on to another.
Step 2
Find other stones to use as knapping tools. Look for a rounded or ovoid striker and a long, flat stone. The "hammer" and "chisel" should not be made of sandstone. Bone or wood can be substituted for the chisel stone.
Step 3
Use the hammer to break up an especially large block of flint into workable, smaller pieces. If you are starting with small pieces, skip this step.
Step 4
Use the hammer and chisel to knap the flint. This is the process of using small-but-firm blows to chisel flakes off the flint. This will allow you to fine tune the shape of the flint without shattering it. Once the flint is shaped into the desired form, start working on knapping a blade edge.

Article Written By Edwin Thomas

Edwin Thomas has been writing since 1997. His work has appeared in various online publications, including The Black Table, Proboxing-Fans and others. A travel blogger, editor and writer, Thomas has traveled from Argentina to Vietnam in pursuit of stories. He holds a Master of Arts in international affairs from American University.

Don't Miss a Thing!

All our latest outdoor content delivered to your inbox once a week.



We promise to keep your email address safe and secure.