In your opinion what is the best non-firearm weapon?


Mr. T
April 24, 2009, 07:41 PM
I was just wondering what the opinions are out there on what the best non-firearm weapon is? Things to consider would be versatility, lethality, and range. Thanks for your opinions.:)

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April 24, 2009, 07:47 PM

April 24, 2009, 07:49 PM
The best for one may not be the best for another.
Training considered is the greatest factor.
A man well trained w/ a cane is a dangerous foe at close range. Take his cane away & give him a knife that he is not trained with & he may not be as dangerous.
Training is a more lethal factor than the weapon itself whether gun, knife, stick, or empty hands.

The above weapon is evidently a very lethal one but I have no idea how to us it.

Mr. T
April 24, 2009, 07:54 PM
Dear Longtooth,

I should have maybe said this, rather than assume it's implied, but I am referring to the non-trained average citizen, which I would consider myself in that group. I thought that maybe a hatchet or machete, for the average untrained person, due to their utility and their potential lethality. As I said though I'm untrained and not very knowledgable about these types of weapons.:o

April 24, 2009, 08:07 PM
For the average, non-trained person, a spear is probably the most effective weapon
a) in hand-to-hand combat
b) where there's room to wield it
(you just can't answer at all without some specifications or qualifications).

Hans Esker
April 24, 2009, 08:09 PM
For the given criteria:
Spear with a cut/thrust blade.
use the opposite end for less lethal work.

Dark Skies
April 24, 2009, 08:17 PM

A pair would be better.

April 24, 2009, 08:25 PM
A hand grenade!

April 24, 2009, 08:54 PM
a long bladed double edge knife.

April 24, 2009, 09:57 PM
The Kusarigama is a farmers weapon, as it is a take off on a syth. I saw a trained fighter use one, and he used the chain to tie up his opponets weapons, and to tie up the opponent himself, who was armed with a long sword and shield.

The one in the picture seems to have a bit larger weight on the chain than the one i saw. The idea is to have the chain loosely wrap around a target you want to take away from the opponent, and then you can move in with the syth.

Not very practical for use in the USA today, and if i was a juror in court I would convict anyone who used one for pre-meditated murder. To strange in a world where more common weapons are the norm.

What ever you use is going to be looked at by a jury, and some of these off the wall items are going to get you life!

Right after the shot put post a thread came up on toliet paper. That was rightly locked, but I wanted to reply anyway.

It can be done, and with ease. SCAA events use a roll of toilet paper all taped up in duct tape. The handle is a 3 or 4 foot long 1" round rattan wood.

This represents a war hammer, and dry it passes inspection. Right after it is inspected I noticed anyone with this weapon soaks it in a bucket of water.

I also noticed anyone hit on the field of battle goes DOWN. That is in armor no less.

Common items? Cane, sticks, bat, hammer, knife... Something you would have because you are doing that type of thing... i used a carpenters hammer once as a threat, because I was making repairs to a house for hire and some dufus came to first sell me drugs, then to steal my ladder..

I used a fly rod to kill a cotton mouth after my son when he was 3.... That snake was after my son, not just near him.. We were fishing..

April 24, 2009, 10:52 PM
A stick. :D

Followed by a blade.

Perhaps a stick with a blade? :)

C'mon, you have to provide some context for such a question. :scrutiny:


Concealed Carry?

Sitting in the corner of the great room? :neener:

Please define era.

April 24, 2009, 10:59 PM
Crystal Ball.

If'n you ain't where trouble is, trouble ain't whup up on ya.

April 24, 2009, 11:05 PM
Bow and of course arrows. I think it is fairly obvious answer myself.

April 24, 2009, 11:23 PM

Versatility? Nope.
Lethality? Yep.
Range? Kinda.

Carl Levitian
April 24, 2009, 11:32 PM
[I should have maybe said this, rather than assume it's implied, but I am referring to the non-trained average citizen, which I would consider myself in that group. I thought that maybe a hatchet or machete, for the average untrained person, due to their utility and their potential lethality. As I said though I'm untrained and not very knowledgable about these types of weapons.]

May we assume that you are also talking non fantacy, present day joe citizen going about his daily business?

Short of a firearm, I really do believe a stick has no equal in the hands of somebody wanting to protect themselves.

A stick can be carried anyplace, anytime. Its so under the radar, most people won't recognize it when its right there next to them. A towel rack on the wall, a rung of a wooden chair, broom or mop handle that can be kicked in half. Or the ubiquitous cane or walking stick.

I don't think it was an accident of fate that for thousands of years, the staff or rod, or cane, has been a companion of travelers on the roads. From a merchant or tinker traveling on the roads of medevil Europe, to the gentlemen of Victorian era who took lessons in cane defense at special studios set up for that purpase.

A walking stick/cane/hiking staff, is always right there in your hand, ready for instant use. Being a blunt force truma inducing weapon, it's effect is immediate. A hand or arm with crushed bones or nerve centers is usless imediatly, vs a cut which may take a while to take affect due to blood loss.

A stick can be improvised out of near anything. The knowledge of how to use it will always be in your head, once learned. Every office building has a janitors closet with one or more nice ash handled mops in it. There's curtain rods as well. Fire place pokers work well too.

With the Americans With disabilities Act, nobody wants to be sued for taking a cane away from you. I've walked into court houses, onto airlines, and into schools with my walking stick. Nobody ever said a thing. yet there it was right in hand, 36 inches of Irish Blackthorn. Or one of my homemade hornbeams. The few comments made were compliments on what a nice looking stick it was. Three feet of stick and a 33 inch sleeve, gives me approximatly a 6 foot radius of swinging room around me. More than enough to buy me space from a knife wielding street punk. Or used pugil stick style, it can block a knife thrust, and then deliver a root knob to the face/throat (like a butt stroke) followed by a shaft blow to the same area in the space of a heartbeat.

Miyamoto Musashi fought a number of duals against katana wielding foes, using a wooden training sword, killing his opponent. A length of oak can be very deadly.

But even for an untrained Joe, a stick is an intuative weapon. Even chimanzes in the wild have been seen to pick up a stick and swing it at a foe. With very little little forthought and a tad of training, a stick can be used to very very good effect. It is not that uncommon to run across articles in the newspaper of a senior citizen fighting off a mugger with a cane. A stick is intuative enough that the old sailors would preffer a belaying pin in close action boarding to the issue cutlass or boarding pike. When sir robert Peel was setting up the very first police force, The London Metropolitan Police, (Bobby's) he was wondering what to arm them with. Pistols of the day were single shot weapons, and in the rainy damp climate of London, not too reliable. He considered swords. Then one of his Bobby recruits, a former sailor in the royal Navy, told him about belaying pins. He then had some study sticks turned out, and it's been history ever since.

There's been many a person or home thats been protected by a sledge hammer handle or ax handle.

If I can't have my Smith and Wesson revolver, give me a good stick.

April 24, 2009, 11:36 PM
If that's not a FIREarm, then I've never seen one... :what:

April 24, 2009, 11:39 PM
Seriously, it's gotta be bow and arrow, and then spear. But then you aren't seriously going to use those things for SD; maybe in Somalia, but not in this land of law.

April 24, 2009, 11:56 PM
My original post assumed that one was to master the weapon and use it against practically any other non-firearm weapon.

Didn't know anyone was talking about the average untrained person and legal issues. I that case... probably a good baseball bat.

April 25, 2009, 12:34 AM
"Best" kinda depends on expected use. For home defense, a lot of times I recommend a halfspear, if firearms aren't an option.

Something like the Cold Steel short assegai.

A halfspear with good cutting edges really combines the best elements of spear, sword, axe, and stick, and can be used effectively with techniques for any of the above weapons.

It's also extremely well suited for anyone who's been in the military, that remembers their fixed bayonet and pugil stick training. One end slices and stabs, the other end smashes. Fixed bayonet fighting is pretty closely based on halfsword and halfspear techniques.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
April 25, 2009, 11:50 AM
Depends on the circumstances

At range, at bow, clearly. Compound for Hunting, Recurve for fighting.

At hand to hand distances, either a sword (such as a 2-handed chisa katana), a hatchet/tomahawk, or a spear. Those who seem to be in the know say a short spear is the most devastating/effective hand to hand weapon. I personally *feel* better protected with a chisa katana or a similar 2-edged sword, than the other two short list choices. I can thrust powerfully like a spear/bayo, but slice and dice and block as well. A chisa katana or wakizashi or similar, or a tomahawk can be used 1-handed as well in conjunction with a shield. So you have to ask yourself what's the other guy going to be armed with and do I want to use a shield and limit my offense, or ditch the shield and go full on offense with a 2 handed weapon? If the opponent has a gun, and you don't, then the shield probably ain't gonna help, so you're better of with a 2-handed weapon.

OK, nevermind, game set and match to flamethrower!! :eek:

April 25, 2009, 11:55 AM
A good sheath knife and a tomahawk ;)

April 25, 2009, 12:15 PM
For a non lethal close quarter attack weapon upon one or several opponents that may not be using a gun, spear or sword I would use what I carry in my left tool pocket of my double knee Carhart pants and that is a collapsible 21" ASP baton.

April 25, 2009, 01:34 PM
Your mind.... because telekenisis rocks!

All seriousness though, knowledge is more important than tools. Although a stick is instinctive to use, to use it effectively takes knowledge. Same with any tool you have at your disposal. Bow and arrow means nothing to those who dont know how to use it. Etc.

Without any knowlege though, I would think a spear would be the easiest and can cause the most damage even for a novice. Distance and pointy thing.

April 25, 2009, 01:46 PM
; P Ka-bar.

April 25, 2009, 02:07 PM
Distance and pointy thing.

My cane and knife. And yes I am trained.

April 25, 2009, 03:13 PM

Travis Bickle
April 25, 2009, 04:15 PM
It's gotta be the machete. The machete is probably the most common weapon in the world after the firearm, if not commoner. I'm guessing that many machete owners can't be wrong.

April 25, 2009, 04:18 PM
decption !!!!

April 25, 2009, 04:50 PM
Well, OK...I couldn't afford a lightsaber so I have this instead.

April 25, 2009, 05:03 PM
Wait, are you carrying that around in a suitcase?

April 25, 2009, 05:22 PM
Wait, are you carrying that around in a suitcase?
Why not? Doesn't everybody??

April 25, 2009, 05:22 PM
^^no, that's my office desk drawer ;)

I carry a P3AT....a little lighter.

Al Thompson
April 25, 2009, 06:17 PM
Another vote for a spear. :) Or a spear with no blade, aka a staff.

Bow would be better at distance, but requires some skill.

April 25, 2009, 07:03 PM
I'd go with a small axe...tomahawk sized. Modern ones like Fiskars.

PA Freedom
April 25, 2009, 07:40 PM
I would choose my 6-D cell Maglite and Cold Steel Trailmaster Bowie. BTW, the ball peen hammer is supposedly carried everywhere by some "one percent" motorcycle enthuisiasts.

April 25, 2009, 08:42 PM
good old fashioned martial arts can take out anyone with any weapon. go with the bare hands option


April 25, 2009, 10:02 PM
good old fashioned martial arts can take out anyone with any weapon. go with the bare hands option


Please. Would you like to fight me with my 12 gauge with a buck shot??

If you're scared, then I will just whip out my Samurai sword.

Now, do you still want to fight me with your bare hands?

I hope that you're being sarcastic. Weapons were created for a reason.

April 25, 2009, 10:07 PM
It all depends on what you mean by "best".

If "best" is:

A) Ease of use with limited training and strength= Spear. Requires very little strength, has good distance, and even a little old lady can stab someone real good with a few pokes.

B) Most Lethal: I would say a long edged weapon such as axe,sword, chainsaw

C)Instant stoper: Chainsaw

D)Long Distance weapon: Crossbow/ Bow and arrow

E)Speed and strength: Stick

F) Concealable: ASP (with training) Mace (without training) or Walking stick.

April 26, 2009, 02:15 PM
good old fashioned martial arts can take out anyone with any weapon. go with the bare hands option
Bring it on!

April 26, 2009, 02:52 PM

April 26, 2009, 02:59 PM
how about a vicious pitbull?

April 26, 2009, 08:27 PM
Fire can be extremely useful in war or warfare-like situations, but is not appropriate or useful for most self-defense.

The OP never said it was for self-defense. SO the most powerful NON firearm weapon would be FIRE. If your talking about self defense I would say a sword. If you can swing a bat you can take a head off.

harmon rabb
April 26, 2009, 09:46 PM
large angry dog.

April 26, 2009, 10:42 PM
If i couldn't use a gun and I had a choice I would use a car or truck in some cases I would use the car or truck even if i did have a gun. their deadly and you can take down multiple opponents with ease regardless of there martial arts training.

April 26, 2009, 10:45 PM
good old fashioned martial arts can take out anyone with any weapon. go with the bare hands option:rolleyes:

I do hope that was a humorous, or just an oversimplified, response and not intending to be taken seriously. Ignoring the whole range of MAs that incorporate weapons techniques or a well trained firearms user that trains in real offensive/defensive firearms use the statement might be applicable to your common semiprofessional violent felon, assuming they're stupid enough to get within arms reach without a loaded weapon pointed at you.

April 27, 2009, 07:26 AM
In your opinion what is the best non-firearm weapon?


April 27, 2009, 07:40 AM
W/O parameters of place/time I would go with a cane. It is not offensive looking and yet gives you an increased blow or blocking ability. On the trail I love my walking staff. I have the top end slightly pointed so it can be used as a jabbing stick. Close in a hatchet or fighting knife is hard to beat. If at all possible I will not engage someone in close combat-too many risks. Running away is my first option unless family is involved, wc

April 27, 2009, 07:54 PM
The longbow.

April 27, 2009, 09:49 PM
And in terms of self-defense rather than field warfare, I'd bet ammo and primers that the most common weapon in history is the stick, and variations thereof, like the staff, cane, and cudgel.

April 27, 2009, 11:22 PM

I'm a lifelong martial artist and I can take out anyone not armed with a gun no matter what weapon they have.

I can also chase down pink leopards on the streets of Philadelphia with my stationary bicycle and hogtie them with my daughters ribbons while whistling dixie.


April 28, 2009, 12:19 PM

April 28, 2009, 12:39 PM
The only acknowledged "authority" that should be recognized on whether the sword or spear was more effective on the battlefield should be a professional archeologist or historian. Personal experience is not authoritative.

Now, since we've gotten wayyyyyyy off track with this side discussion of spear vs sword I'm going to make the posts go away on the topic and encourage the participants to open their own thread and let this one get back on track.

April 28, 2009, 01:47 PM
Composite bows have been used to kill more humans in war than any other weapon prior to the adoption of firearms. Even after firearms became common battlefield weapons, composite bows remained in common use up to the late 1800's.

April 28, 2009, 04:22 PM
You may be right, but do you have sources for this? I really haven't done as much research on bow as some other weapons.

April 28, 2009, 05:03 PM
Stick/club, taser, knife

April 29, 2009, 07:49 AM
Versatility, lethality and range...hmmm...

Versatility is having many uses or various functions. Why that requirement? Weapons are for offense or defense. You use them to attack somebody or defend yourself.

Range to me insinuates that you do not wish to close with your you are not looking for knives or clubs.

I am gathering that you are looking for the best self defense weapon that an untrained/self-taught person can have at hand 24/7 for defense.

If that is the case, my vote goes for a knife. Sticks and clubs are fine weapons...but I am going to look rather odd going into the store where I work with a cane (that I do not need) every day. Really...:rolleyes:

My folders can ride in a pocket unobserved and weigh 3 ounces. They are instantly available to me.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
April 29, 2009, 09:18 AM
Lol, game, set & match to IndianaBoy! :D

April 29, 2009, 10:05 AM
Either of these would do it for me.

Hyena or Baboon, either way your gonna be having a "bad day":evil:

April 30, 2009, 02:36 AM

My favorite breed: American Bulldog. :o

An American Bulldog is typically a happy, friendly, and assertive dog that is at ease with its family and fine with outsiders who pose no threat. They bond strongly with their master and family.

They are working dogs with high energy drives, thus American Bulldogs do best in a home with a large backyard and plenty of exercise.

American Bulldogs are now safe from extinction and are enjoying a healthy increase in popularity, either as a working dog or as a family pet. All over the world, they are used variously as "hog dogs" (catching escaped pigs or hunting razorbacks), as cattle drovers and as working K-9s.

April 30, 2009, 03:48 AM

( some Kung-Fu training included.)

April 30, 2009, 03:52 PM
The Stick

April 30, 2009, 05:29 PM an entrenching tool...very good weapon. I voted a small tomahawk like axe (Fiskars makes the one I have). Handy, lethal, easy for anybody to use. Same for the entrenching tool. I little heavy for a second swing but lookout when you connect.

I am assuming that "best non-firearm weapon" as implied by the OP would be ease of use for anybody of sound body, effective, convenient to have around, and easy to get under any circumstances. A machete is really great too but under many circumstances, it would be looked upon with some fear and loathing. A nice little Fiskars hatchet/axe or an entrenching tool (with some wood chips or dirt on 'em) is a pretty benign looking, every day tool...until it was deployed as a weapon and then...well...could a million Vikings have been wrong? :)

April 30, 2009, 07:04 PM
If you are talking straight CQB effectiveness I believe the tomahawk has no equal.

April 30, 2009, 07:25 PM
Yeah, maskedman504,

For where you can take a dog, good choice!

My Yogi will be gone 5 years on May 4. Johnson bred AB straight from John D. himself. 125 lbs. of pure hell if he didn't trust you. Loved kids and small animals, and I don't mean for lunch! He'd lick them to death. Don't get too near the car, though, if he was riding in back, like he did umpteen times. Hate to see those windows break.

Very smart, too. He knew what squirrels, rabbits, woodchucks, mousies were. All you had to do is tell him. He'd start pawing the ground if you told him to find a "mousie". He'd find a woodchuck hole if you asked him to.

Sorry if I got off topic.


April 30, 2009, 07:31 PM
This question at least got me thinking in some interesting ways. Because a firearm is generally considered the ideal primary weapon, the "best" non-firearm weapon is still a limitation. So the question is...what limitation, exactly, are you working within?

Cane is pretty much a sure bet for a versatile, subtle, legal, easy-to-use non-firearm weapon, good offensively and defensively.

With training, a knife is truly a deadly offensive weapon and it's concealable.

For a concealable impact weapon, I am now a huge fan of the "slapjack" or sap.

You can get ridiculous, of course, and suggest crossbow or bow and arrow for range. But honestly, short of Deliverance, why/where would that really be used in combat these days?

The limitations of the situation define the need for the non-firearm weapon.

April 30, 2009, 07:49 PM

April 30, 2009, 08:10 PM
My Mizuno 9 iron.

April 30, 2009, 08:40 PM
Dogs, cats, sticks, spears, etc - no match. For the ultimate in lethality - tenacity - and evil, I submit to you - the All-American Mother-in-Law. The neophytes of the order are super shrews - and hone their skills by selling door to door - Mary Kay/Avon, no matter - water boarding is an accepted sales technique. They should be covered by the Geneva Convention - they are covered in the military under the UCMJ - cruel and unusual punishment. I feel strongly about this... can you tell?


April 30, 2009, 11:46 PM
Dogs, cats, sticks, spears, etc - no match. For the ultimate in lethality - tenacity - and evil, I submit to you - the All-American Mother-in-Law. The neophytes of the order are super shrews - and hone their skills by selling door to door - Mary Kay/Avon, no matter - water boarding is an accepted sales technique. They should be covered by the Geneva Convention - they are covered in the military under the UCMJ - cruel and unusual punishment. I feel strongly about this... can you tell?

Comic gold.

May 1, 2009, 02:00 AM

Naginata FTW

May 1, 2009, 11:32 AM
Hoping to stay true to the intent of this thread: Edged weapons have some disadvantages in that to really be effective as weapons you are going to need training. No "regular Joe" is going to be able to wield a sword properly. Plus a real sword, not the fantasy wall hangers, is going to cost more than a firearm. A knife as a last ditch maybe but without training you're going to loose or get hurt bad I think.

That's why I like the tomahawk or the entrenching tool. When I was a kid, I had a boat and bought a brush to clean it with. The thing was probably almost 3 feet long, made of oak or some other very hard hardwood, and had a big thick head. I swear to goodness the thing was an Iroquois war club with brush bristles sticking out of it! It has sufficient algae encrusted on it that I had "plausible deniability" in terms of it being a weapon. It would have crushed anything it struck.

You don't need much training to wield a tomahawk/hatchet or an entrenching tool and you can buy one for a song and not upset LE.

Loyalist Dave
May 1, 2009, 12:36 PM
A hardwood stick,
which includes a cane, an escrima stick, a hawthorne walking stick, a hanbo, a cudgel, a shellelagh, a police baton, and the Eastern Woodland Indian ball headed club, as well as others. (Found in every culture that has wood..., so must be something to them eh??)

You can make any one of them with a very small pocket knife. They are cheap. They are effective. They don't get stuck in the opponent; a distinct advantage over bladed weapons when facing multiple attackers.


Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
May 1, 2009, 01:02 PM
Plus, while the BG is bent over laughing at your skirt, this will allow you a free whack at him.

Seriously that thing looks like an excellent weapon lvcat, except that I'd want it a little less curved at the end and a little more spear-like for thrusting - I'd actually want it 2-edged/symmetrical - but that does look close to the ultimate combo, giving you the advantages of both sword AND spear (and stick). I'd also want a shorter shaft length - one that you can bring in front of your body, to create a whipping action by pushing with one hand and pulling with the other, on either side of a pivot point - something the length approx. of a hockey stick (about 4 feet) - anyone who's played or seen a Mario Lemieaux wrist shot that propels a puck 70 mph from very minimal movement knows the amount of power/thrust that can be generated very quickly in a short movement from the push/pull combination - in this case for the slashing/sword use. The shorter length would also be preferred in close quarters such as a bedroom.

I would also want some knobs or bumps at certain points along the shaft for indexing, and to provide additional force against the hands for a thrusting action (to avoid slippage).

What I want to know is, who's gonna be the first THR member to get a pet Hyena!?! :p

May 1, 2009, 01:29 PM
big bore pcp-gun... not a fire arm but an arm.

May 1, 2009, 01:51 PM
One weapon I havn't seen mentioned or maybe I overlooked it was the slingshot. Not as leathal as some of the others mentioned but it can give you 20 yards of space between you and an assialant and still deliver a potent wollop. Might not kill anyone but pretty discouraging to get hit with a lead pill going 200fps. My first choice would be a hard wood cane then a good knife.


May 1, 2009, 03:24 PM
Clubs are good. The people of New Guinea use a club made out of some sort of obscenely hard tropical wood. The thing is shaped more or less like a pick handle but in cross section comes to a point down each side. Again this wood they use is as hard a iron and when this thin edge, backed up by bulk hits something, much damage is done. And being wood, it is light enough to get in subsequent strikes, unlike say an entrenching tool.

The ancient Egyptians, in the Old Kingdom had only copper. They used a mace. A granite ball, the size of a baseball with the hole through the middle and a haft through it like a modern hammer head.

May 1, 2009, 04:51 PM
My opinion: the club. A club can be fast and devastating. Clubs counter knives very effectively, as well, and can be used to break the arm holding the knife. Granted, in a trained hand, other weapons may work better, but a wooden club is the universal non-firearm weapon that can be used to effectively counter most other non-firearm weapons.

May 2, 2009, 02:24 AM
Ivycat, considering the naginata is shorter than the yari ( more difficult to learn, I must disagree. Further, in the picture you're showing, the naginata user is not taking advantage of one of the great strengths of all polearms, instead allowing the swordsman to close with him.

sepeteus, welcome to the forum. What is that?


May 2, 2009, 03:23 AM
cane sword.

May 2, 2009, 01:29 PM
Worst idea for legal carry EVER.

May 2, 2009, 01:35 PM
As Clint Eastwood demonstated in "Pale Rider", a good piece of hickory.

May 2, 2009, 01:39 PM
Really, as many people have said in this thread and elsewhere, if you are looking for an effective, easily learned, and easy to have or find practically anywhere, a piece of wood is a great choice.

For me, I prefer a piece of phenolic rod between 1 and 1 1/4" in diameter. Micarta (C or CE) is preferred, but I recently got a paper (XX) that isn't quite as tough, but still stronger than any wood by probably 200%. If you pick the right phenolic rod, it will look like wood.


Dirty Bob
May 3, 2009, 12:02 AM
For public carry, a stick. I use a hiking stick on trails, a cane when walking in my neighborhood and in other urban/suburban environs. It's in your hands when trouble starts, and it can be used by a novice. Training is not essential for it to work, but training and practice definitely make it more effective. In expert hands, the stick is an awesome tool.

For home, I'd choose a short spear. I can show someone the very basics in a few minutes, and a torso wound with one thrust of a broad-bladed spear head would not likely be survivable without immediate medical attention. The spear is also generally much less expensive than a sword of comparable quality. A spear would be very ugly to face in a narrow hallway.

For myself, I'd choose a sword for the right hand, and in the left hand, either a buckler or targe, or a madu. A madu is a short, double-ended spear with a small shield in the middle to cover the hand. The madu, in skilled hands, is a very nasty left-hand weapon. The lower spear point is the weapon that will probably do the most damage. The sword draws the attention, but what looks like a block with the madu actually sets up the lower point for a stab to the leg or abdomen.

Dirty Bob

May 3, 2009, 01:27 AM
A blade with a good edge.

Knives never need reloading!

May 3, 2009, 11:57 AM
A knife is one of the most useful tools. It's not the best weapon by a long shot.

Welcome to THR. :)


Carl Levitian
May 3, 2009, 01:47 PM
All of this is groping in the dark because of the lack of definition in the original post. Does he mean in present time? Or in historical past times? Social status of person carrying, as it can mean a huge difference what will be carried. I beleive in medevil England and Japan, it was execution on the spot for a person of the peasant class to found with a sword, or other weapon of war. Thus the popularity of the walking staff/quarter staff for travelers on the old roads.

For the common man, even going back to biblical references, "Thy rod and thy staff shall comfort me." holds very true.

Fast forward to parts of the world that have massive riots, like the Sikh/hindu clashes in India, you see a heck of alot of both police and rioters swinging long rattan staffs.

So it seems to come down to "for who, when and where."

For a noble born rich guy who has years to learn the art, a sword may be his best bet overall. For the humble peasant farmer carrying his grain to market in a wagon, the well tested quarter staff may be best. A modern guy living in a place where a firearm is not permitted, (U.K., Japan, some U.S. cities) most likely will do well with a stout cane/walking stick outside of his home.

Hostile Amish
May 3, 2009, 06:01 PM
The classic Bowie knife is the best non-firearm weapon practically. Good balance, stays sharp, multiple uses, good survival tool, etc.

For everyday use, you can't beat a folding knife.

AZ Insurgent
May 3, 2009, 09:28 PM
I'm going with a machete. Even if they tried to block the blow with their arm it would still get chopped off.

May 3, 2009, 11:35 PM
Ivycat, considering the naginata is shorter than the yari and more difficult to learn, I must disagree. Further, in the picture you're showing, the naginata user is not taking advantage of one of the great strengths of all polearms, instead allowing the swordsman to close with him.

When trained properly, Naginata is much more dangerous than Yari. But for a beginner, Yari may be better, I don't disagree.

The picture doesn't mean anything. That's all I could find. A couple of white boys using tachi and naginata...what else can I say.

May 4, 2009, 12:55 AM
Okay. I just would hate for folks who knew nothing about spear work to think there was some advantage to getting so close to a swordsman. :)


May 4, 2009, 03:24 AM
The classic Bowie knife is the best non-firearm weapon practically. Good balance, stays sharp, multiple uses, good survival tool, etc.

+1 if it is the right design. With a blade of 10-11 inches or longer, it basically becomes a very frightening stick; combining the best attributes of stick (reach, crush, leverage of speed) with a knife (touch and be effective).

May 4, 2009, 01:10 PM
This outfit offers 4 different pre-shaped Eastern American Indian ball clubs that are 18" - 23" in length:

May 4, 2009, 01:13 PM
Tazer just ask the cops and the people who have been tazed!

May 4, 2009, 01:22 PM
The Tazer is great in stand off situations when it actually works.- George

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
May 4, 2009, 01:51 PM
I'm revising what I said earlier and running with:

1. Ranged: Big Bore PCP airgun (as mentioned it is NOT a firearm), and

2. Non-ranged: Yari or Naginata!

Honorable mentions to recurve bow, chisa katana, taser, and short spear.

May 4, 2009, 03:24 PM
I'll just start head butting everything!

(Not sure that's what that martial arts instructor meant....)

May 4, 2009, 08:53 PM
arcticap, nice "back massagers" least, that's what I'd claim they were ;)

May 4, 2009, 09:01 PM
It's that thing between your ears, your brain. Remember not to panic, keep your cool, consider the total situation before you start reacting. (jmoho)

May 5, 2009, 01:06 AM
Tazer just ask the cops and the people who have been tazed!

If you include all the cops involved in the Rodney King fiasco, you'd probably get a different opinion!
;) ;)

May 5, 2009, 09:15 PM
May I suggest the humble ax?
Or perhaps the American Tomahawk?
There is, quite literally, a battleax by my bed.

Room to swing is not a problem, I practice with it and know it's limitations in every room.

May 6, 2009, 02:01 AM
A Nuke? handful of anthrax in your face? mustard gas? A Mack running you down at 75mph?

All good self/home defense options, imo.

May 6, 2009, 02:38 AM
A nuclear device is a good home defense weapon?

Okay, on that note...

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