Butterfly Knifes And Switch Blades?


July 3, 2008, 09:04 PM
Im looking into geting a butterfly knife or a switch blade. The only problem with this is I live in Canada were they are some what illegal. I guy I know sead you use to get a switch blade at the flea market but they wouldent get the springs so if you want to get technical its not really a switch blade. I have not seen these knifes around the flea market but i would like any info you can give me on butterfly knife's and switch blades.

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July 3, 2008, 11:06 PM
If you're looking for advice on Canadian law on these things I doubt if we can be much help. The folks at Bladeforums and Knifeforums might be able to answer some questions.

OTOH, you can always go to knifekits.com and purchase the parts to make anything you want and then you have to deal with the legal questions on possession for whatever you build. Be sure to check on that because a smart man understands the penalties associated with his actions before he carries them out.

July 3, 2008, 11:14 PM
what is "somewhat" illegal? that's like saying "a little bit pregnant." either they are illegal, or they aren't. are there loopholes in canadian law that would let you carry one of those blades?

The Tourist
July 3, 2008, 11:27 PM
You'd be amazed on how many righteous, white-collar, gray haired guys go ga-ga over Sicilian stilettos. They buy huge, fancy ones and use them for letter openers or hide them away in a dark closet, only to be gazed upon in secret.

It's funny how some folks will cheat on their taxes without a care But when it comes to a nil-enforced 1958 law on stilettos, they hide under their beds like a SWAT team was coming.

It's a fancy slender knife, the design of 1920's technology and leaf spring that's actually weaker than that in a pinball machine.

It's an antique knife, and nobody cares.

July 3, 2008, 11:38 PM
Don't get caught carrying either one of them in Virginia.

Antique design or not, the State Troopers will most definitely arrest you.

You'll go to jail.

Don Gwinn
July 3, 2008, 11:44 PM
Except that some stilettos are switchblades, but most switchblades aren't stilettos except in the movies. That detail aside, switchblade laws ARE enforced in many places. It was only a couple of years ago that a man was arrested outside Peoria, IL for carrying an Onion/Kershaw collaboration with the Speedsafe torsion assist. That's not a switchblade under Illinois law, but they thought it was, so they arrested him--and then the Springfield police put out a warning that local Wal-Marts were selling these "switchblades" and anyone caught with one in Springfield would be charged with a felony. I butted heads with the phone drones at SPD myself on that one.

Awhile before that, one of my favorite knife dealers got busted and heavily fined for selling switchblades to cops who wrote or got someone to write requests on official letterhead. Apparently both he and the cops thought that was legal--but guess who did NOT get fined or charged?

Careful, Brown. Also, try Firefox for your web browser. The spell-check alone is worth it.

July 3, 2008, 11:53 PM
Awhile before that, one of my favorite knife dealers got busted and heavily fined for selling switchblades to cops who wrote or got someone to write requests on official letterhead. Apparently both he and the cops thought that was legal--but guess who did NOT get fined or charged?

Don, that's very interesting because a bona fide dealer who sells only upon receipt of letterhead shouldn't be in violation of 15 or 18 USC (Interstate Commerce).

It could be wholly possible to be in compliance with federal law and still violate other state laws (especially if the state makes sale and possession illegal and provides no exemption for dealers).

Do you remember what the charge was and what state?

July 4, 2008, 12:20 AM
"Butterfly knives", "switchblades", "gravity knives", and most other knives that you can open with the action of one hand are prohibited in Canada because they fall under one of the definitions of "prohibited weapon" in the Canadian Criminal Code, ie. "(a) a knife that has a blade that opens automatically by gravity or centrifugal force or by hand pressure applied to a button, spring or other device in or attached to the handle of the knife". Courts have also ruled that this includes anything that is "readily adaptable", or that can easily be repaired to make it fall under this definition. So, you're looking for something that is illegal in Canada, spring or no spring, no matter that the law is pointless and ignorant (is someone killed with a fixed-blade knife any less dead than someone killed with an automatic knife?). BUT, because the definition says "in or attached to the HANDLE of the knife", this means that knives like the Kershaw Leek, Scallion, Speed Bump, etc., etc. are perfectly fine, since you don't open them with anything on the HANDLE. You just push out on the blade, and they pop open. However, this is not a licence to be a putz with one. The way your question is posed makes me think you're more interested in "showing off", or being a "tough guy" with it, in which case, do us all a favour and find something else to do.

July 4, 2008, 02:27 AM
If your worried about it, get an "assisted opening" knife. I Don't think they are considered switch blade b/c I bought it at Walmart. The one I got (kershaw) has a little spur at the bottom of the blade that sticks through the top of the handle, once you start it opening a spring kicks it the rest of the way. If Im wrong, oh well I'm not that worried. It's a stupid law. What makes a knife more dangerous if you can open it faster? It's still slower than a fixed blade.:rolleyes: Butterfly knives are really fun, once you get the hang of them. I got a nice little gash on my thumb from flipping the stupid thing around.

July 4, 2008, 08:11 AM
lol,dont go looking for a switchblade in a flea market,lolif you want to waste money just send it here,buddy of mine has one,it is actueally a law enforcement issue,not like the normal one you see on tv,button is well hidden,all black,kind of flat,back part of the blade is serrated also,they say that is good for cutting seat belts in emergencyshere in pa butter flys are lkegal i believe,most martel arts stores carry them

The Tourist
July 4, 2008, 11:44 AM
Double post.

The Tourist
July 4, 2008, 11:45 AM
Don't get caught

I can go to a police/firemen's picnic carrying a stiletto and not get arrested.

I've ridden Black Betty for four years now utilizing Screaming Eagle pipes, not one ticket for noise.

Most cops in my area know where I live. In fact, the last time I reported a sleeze (we have Neighborhood Watch) hanging around our kids park taking picures from his truck, the dispatcher called me by my first name.

Your conduct, your values, and your moral core of beliefs is more important than a local statute.

Tom Krein
July 4, 2008, 12:50 PM
The Tourist, this is true. BUT only if they know you! It is not a 100% sure thing...

ltetmhs, Canadian laws differ from U.S. laws.... and I am GLAD that they do!!


July 4, 2008, 01:41 PM
IMHO: They ain't all they are cracked up to be anyway.

I have several in my collection.
Even the best of them suffer from broken springs now and then.

And even the best of them are not as reliable when dirty or full of sand as a good one-hand folder.
Or any faster to get into action when clean.

I'd look at like an assisted opener, Benchmade Axis Lock, Spyderco hole, or Emersion Wave type design, if one-hand speed under any conditions is what you want.


July 4, 2008, 03:43 PM
Kershaw makes "easy outs" that are close to a switchblade. I have 4 of them and they open fast, are sharp, and relieable. Plus Kershaws come with a lifetime warrenty. Check out their knives at Kershawstor.com. Hope ya find something that suits your fancy! Good Luck!!!

The Tourist
July 4, 2008, 05:32 PM
The Tourist, this is true. BUT only if they know you!

And whose fault is it if they don't?

I wave to squad cars, a lot of them wave back. I go see the new rookies. I hand out cards by the metric ton. I'm always willing to chat with a potential new client and/or often advice.

I once told the story about meeting a retired area cop in a grocery store. He had just hit it big at a local Indian Casino and he was buying up every piece of quality meat and steaks he could find. We sat down for coffee in their breakfast nook, and talked guns and knives.

"I just got a new titanium SW J-frame," I told Henry, "it's so light you seldom know you're carrying it."

Then I realized who I was talking to. I quickly added, "But that would be wrong."

Henry took a swig of his coffee, and smirked, "Fella, we all know you carry..."

I've shown switchblade samples to a female officer who pulled me over in loaner dealer car. I learned as a young biker that the art of conversation was cheaper than bail money.

July 4, 2008, 08:21 PM
"showing off", or being a "tough guy

No thats something im not trying to do at all I find my self slowly geting in knifes. Im looking for this type of knife to be use as a tool as to was intented.

July 4, 2008, 09:52 PM
I'm sorry if I misunderstood the point of your question, but, yes, knife "kits" are normally stopped in the mail by a part of Canada Customs called the "Prohibited Importations Unit", that works with Canada Post. They seize anything illegal that people try to mail into Canada, and it gets destroyed. If you want a good one-handed knife at a decent price, look for one of Kershaw's "speed-safe" designs. You can buy these already IN Canada, so you don't need to worry about having it confiscated in the mail. Some good Canadian dealers that have these in stock are http://www.knifezone.ca and http://www.kuttersknives.com/scrKrashers.asp

The Tourist
July 4, 2008, 10:12 PM
SDC makes a good point. MY wife owns a Kershaw Boa and it opens just as fast as the finest coil driven automatic knife.

July 4, 2008, 10:29 PM
Kershaw...great knives, great value, great warranty and customer service.

Look of the "easy outs," as I may have already mentioned. I think that's your best shot at getting something similar to what your looking for!

The Tourist
July 4, 2008, 10:33 PM
It's the romance. People could have the best Microtech ever made and they'd still secretly want a real-deal Sicilian stiletto. I sell knives, and I have a special fondness for the Sicilian.

July 4, 2008, 10:45 PM
Go with it dude! Being a knife dealer, I'm sure you are more knowledgeable than I am. I'm just a collector, and was trying to offer a solution to their problem of living in Canada and the laws and regulations there. Props to you.

July 4, 2008, 10:55 PM
I might as well ask this here- does anybody make a balisong like object that has a writing pen in between, where the blade should be? I like to play with stuff like this.

July 4, 2008, 11:03 PM
Ask the Tourist CZ.22, he sells knives and can probably help you out.

July 4, 2008, 11:05 PM
I have said it before, and I will say it again: I don't think the cops will hassle anyone over a knife unless they have a specific reason too. I am not saying that you should break the law, but freaking out over an automatic knife or a knife that is over the size limit is probably only going to be an issue if you make it one.

For example, If your the type to scream at cops when you get pulled over for speeding or something, your always going to get a ticket. Always. I, on the other hand, have always made it a policy to be polite and friendly to the police and have gotten out of tickets the last three times I have gotten pulled over, to include one where I got pulled over a few years back for not using my blinker to change lanes and told the highway patrolman "Hell, I thought you were pulling me over because I passed you doing 85", to which he just laughed. My point is, being genuinely polite and friendly means that the cops aren't going to start looking for things (not that I have anything to hide, mind you). Being a jerk is just going to draw that much more heat down on you.

I don't wave my knifes around at people, I don't threaten people with them, and they never leave my pocket unless it's to cut something or clean a fingernail. The average cop doesn't have one reason in the world to give me a second glance, and so I personally don't worry one bit about what knife I am carrying around. Like I say, I don't think anyone should break or flaunt the law, but there are certain laws that can be bent pretty easily, with tacit approval of the law enforcers, if some common sense is applied.

As far as getting arrested in IL, it is IL. Common sense as regards anything even remotely classified as a weapon has never been in abundance amongst legislators there.

July 5, 2008, 12:45 AM
I guess (know) I'm an oddball but I've been carrying an auto everyday/everywhere for at least 13 years. And you know what? I still get a kick every time I push the button!
Pretty much wore out two Benchmade 2500's. Now I have several auto Al Mars.

July 5, 2008, 05:45 AM
Dude, it's getting it through customs or across the boarder. I have family in B.C. and Alberta and I know what a pain in the butt send things through the mail or carrying things crossing the boarder can be. It's not a matter of being harassed by the cops or anything...it's getting the knife in the first place!!!

July 5, 2008, 10:05 AM
Yes thats the huge problem im trying to overcome.
Keep it comeing any info you can give me would be well appreciated.

July 5, 2008, 06:30 PM
Mr.Brown16, as I have already mentioned, Kershaw makes a line of knives that are very similar to a swichblade. They are called "easy outs, you basicly gently push an small extention on the backside of the knife and the blade flips open. I have about 4 of them myself and they are awesome.

Go to Kershawstore.com and check out what they've got. I'm sure there will also be information about shipping across boards into other countries.

Let me know if ya need any more info. - 240SX

July 5, 2008, 06:31 PM
Scarab or Ultratech would satisfy that craving for me.

Maybe someday, but not now. I've got lots of blades. Now I gotta use them!

I've got a nice Balisong, a Benchmade with 154CM steel. Titanium handles (maybe the wrong term (handles), but very nice). Fun to carry along, but I don't think I've cut anything with it! Thanks for your post, I dug it out and started playing with it. The quality is there. I used to have a 1984 Pacific Cutlery SS model when they first came out.



July 5, 2008, 09:10 PM
BTW: CRKT make knives similar to the Kershaw I described above also. Hope ya find something that meets your fancy!

July 5, 2008, 10:19 PM
Yes, there's a balipen made by Spyderco called the baliyo (http://www.baliyo.com/).


July 6, 2008, 04:42 AM
Thanks hso, I toatally forgot about Spyderco.

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