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All these Bali threads!?!?

Discussion in 'Non-Firearm Weapons' started by Yo Mama, Aug 13, 2010.

  1. Yo Mama

    Yo Mama Well-Known Member

    I've noticed an extreme upswing in the number of Bali threads. I'm guessing Bali = butterfly? I'm probably wrong, but I've seen it used now to reffer to a butterfly style knife.

    So, my question, what's the deal with these? Everyone loves them all of a sudden?
  2. ArfinGreebly

    ArfinGreebly Moderator Emeritus

    Finger Guard

    I've noticed.

    I pretty much don't get deep into the Bali/Butterfly hardware.

    The main issues are lack of a) a reasonably grippy handle and b) some kind of guard to keep my digits from contaminating the edge with organic material.

    I kinda like my organic material.

    They's sure pretty though. I don't show them to my youngest daughter. She would be reminded of the one that her "friends" ruined, and want a replacement -- and not anything cheap, too.

    So I mostly drool a little and keep my pinkies in my pockets.


  3. CDR_Glock

    CDR_Glock Well-Known Member

    A Bali takes longer to open than a lot of the spring assist and automatic knives on the market.

    I bought a Benchmade 42, new, but I never even used it. I can open a SOG faster than any butterfly. They are fancy knives but I don't care for it.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  4. Hammerson

    Hammerson Active Member

    Played with them a lot in my misspent youth. They are fun to play with, but I never had much faith in them; locks wear fast and flop, handles tend to be slick. IIRC I ruined the tip of one opening an epoxy tube, or something similar.

    Not really a working knife, not really something I would trust as a "fighting knife." They're good for working off nervous energy, though.
  5. nevermas

    nevermas Well-Known Member

    My personal theory of the recent soar in prices for the Benchmade 52 and growing interest in other balisongs is directly attributed to the release of the movie : Kick A$$
  6. CDR_Glock

    CDR_Glock Well-Known Member

    You're probably right. I found mine at a local gun shop. It was the Titanium one that I had not seen in many years. Ergonomics is nothing like a tactical knife. I have the 42.

    I had a brass $10 one as a kid.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  7. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    The counter question before when there was nearly nothing said at times on them might have been, "What's the deal? Everyone hate them all of a sudden?".;)

    The more serious answer might be like nevermas said, Mindy/Hit Girl use of them in "Kick Ass" and new models becoming available.

    Besides, they're fun.
  8. zignal_zero

    zignal_zero Well-Known Member

    if you get the right one, they are EXCELLENT working knives. the lock (on a quality balisong) is actually stronger than the lock on a traditionally styled folder due to the fact it has two pivots instead of one. as you apply force and try to force it to rotate around the one pivot, it's actually being held by the other. similar, in effect, to the way the axle of a bicycle is support by the upper spokes, while simultaneously being held up by the spokes on bottom. very rock solid design as far as folders go. i trust the lock of a decent balisong more than a liner lock. as for the grip of the handles and the lack of a real gaurd - i totally agree, and generally carry a fixed blade which has both :D

    another strong point (in regards to safety and convenience of the bali) is - when closed, the blade is completely cocooned in steel.

    as for how fast can they be opened compared to OHO folders (spring assisted and autos included), it depends on whether you have to do a double flip or single. if you master the "fast draw", you can open a bali just as fast as a Kershaw Blur.... i can.

    bali's are not for everyone, but they have way too much stigma as a novelty knife when the truth is - they are very functional for EDC needs. especially lesser expensive models like the Bradley Kimura.
  9. jahwarrior

    jahwarrior Well-Known Member

    i've always loved them, since i got my first one 25 years ago. lately, i've been investigating knife laws in my state; gun laws are pretty clear cut, but knife laws aren't. i found that balisongs are one of the few knives that could be carried legally, openly or concealed, in my state. so, to be on the safe side, i decided to carry one as my EDC. a good quality one can make for an excellent user knife.
  10. proud2deviate

    proud2deviate Well-Known Member

    Go on and drool:p
  11. Yo Mama

    Yo Mama Well-Known Member

    Thanks all. Pretty much as I expected, not for everyone, but for those who like them they serve it's purpose.

    Zignal_Zero: which folding lock are you referring to? All types, or liner? I've been seeing that the axis lock beats all, but wonder if this is true.
  12. zignal_zero

    zignal_zero Well-Known Member

    the Axis is a tank, no doubt, there's a 710 in my pocket right now. i still believe, if quality was same, and the size of the pivots were the same, the bali would require more force be applied to the spine in order to force it closed. this is all theory, as i will not be hangin weights off any of my knives the way Cold Steel does LOL.

    the Axis is serioulsy strong for the SAME reason the balisong is. they're actually kind of similar in the sense that the "pin" that lays across the rear of the blade (on the Axis) serves a similar function to the 2nd "pin" that is through the blade on a balisong. i'm sure i'm doing a horrible job conveying what i'm trying to, but if you have both of them handy, look at the lock and imagine where the force would be distributed while trying to force it closed. they're almost cousins :)

    the balisong is actually an amazing design that gets overlooked due to it's gangta/ninja/7th grad mercenary reputation :(

    edit to add - just to be perfectly clear, i'll take a fixed blade over everything and normally have one on.
  13. Yo Mama

    Yo Mama Well-Known Member

    Actually, funny, was just examining the locking mechanism on the axis earlier today, and it's really ingenious how it's designed. So simple, but really hard to break. So, I know the pins your talking about. I don't have a balisong to compare to, but if it has the same set up I'd guess it's pretty darn strong.

    Side note, money is tight, but since getting an axis from Benchmade, I'll never go with anything else in a folder.
  14. Joe Demko

    Joe Demko Well-Known Member

    A good bali is darned difficult to break. Too many people form their opinions on them based on $10 PRC examples purchased at flea markets and gunshows. They typically have zamak handles and break under even light use. Judging balis by those is like judging lockbacks based on the PRC examples sold in the same venues at the same price point.
    They do seem to wax and wane in popularity based on movies. I bought my first, a Bali-Song Inc (now Benchmade), after seeing one in "Sharkey's Machine." There was also some cool butterfly action in "Streets of Fire."
  15. nevermas

    nevermas Well-Known Member

    not to deviate from the topic too much, but when i first saw the Axis lock, it was so simple that I thought to my head, hey I could have thought of that.

    spyderco has a great balisong design called the spyderfly, I've been going to the gunshows for a few years and can't find any.

    spyderco also makes a balisong pen called the baliyo. It's got mixed reviews in durability, but a interesting toy nonetheless.
  16. ArfinGreebly

    ArfinGreebly Moderator Emeritus

  17. docnyt

    docnyt Well-Known Member

    Interesting. I never thought of a balisong trainer.
  18. Gunfighter123

    Gunfighter123 Well-Known Member

    I don't know why anyone would think that a Bali is not a strong lock up --- right around 1980 , I seen a vid of Jody Sampson , when he was doing blades for PCC/BM , take a bowie blade Bali and punch it thru a 55 gal drum. The 3 point lock DID NOT break and he then stabbed it thru the drum another 3 or 4 times with NO damage to the knife.

    As far as Balis being "slower" to open --- just had to laught at that !!! I will bet $50 that I can "dagger drop" a Bali FROM A SNAPPED SHUT SHEATH as fast or faster then most can with almost any other knife FROM A CLOSED SHEATH.

    Add the fact that a well made Bali can be used as a "flail/nunchuk" --- something almost NO OTHER knife can be used for. And there are AT LEAST 10-100 ways of opening it !!!

    IMHO ---- YES , there is a STEEP learning curve with a good Bali ---- but once mastered , very few folding knifes can equal it.

    ANYONE can open a assisted knife ----- it takes SKILL to learn to use a Bali. Just like with firearms , ANYONE can shoot a gun ---- the people that MASTER a firearm are in a different class.
  19. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    I have a few balisongs (modern, vintage and antiques from the Philippines) and regard them very highly, BUT a bali can not be used as a "nunchuk" (not enough mass to matter) and any flailing techniques amount to tricks, which the bali excels at.

    As to lock strength, there's nothing to fail in the way of a lock. The pivot pins might fail if you applied enough force, but it's a folder developed in a culture where fixed blade knives are commonplace to the point no one would try to do anything more than light to medium cutting with a bali. They are fundamentally solid designs. Poor quality in materials or craftsmanship will fail in almost any design.
  20. Hammerson

    Hammerson Active Member

    :eek: I need to admit, I used the wrong terminology. When referring to the "lock" I actually meant the toggle that holds the handles together when closed. My bad. :eek:
    During the mid to late '80s I liked to EDC a balisong. Unfortunately, they had an annoying habit of opening in my pocket. If the knife was blade down, it would cut the pocket it was carried in. If it was carried point up, I had to risk stabbing myself in th hand with my own knife (obviously unacceptable). I finally resorted to a closed sheath, but that was never as convenient, especially at work. Sorry for the confusion. I never did have a problem with one failing or folding up under me while using it.

    For those that know more: was/is pocket carry an unrealistic expectation for this design? I never found one that would stay closed in a pocket. Recommendations?

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