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"Four Rules" for knives?

Discussion in 'Non-Firearm Weapons' started by heron, Mar 31, 2013.

  1. heron

    heron Well-Known Member

    The "Four Rules" for firearms use are all over the place here, but has anyone done something similar for the use of knives and other edged/pointed tools? If they have, I've never seen it.

    I could start with a couple:

    1) Keep it sharp

    2) BEFORE putting the blade in motion, THINK of where it will go if it slips.

    3) (This is redundant to #2, but -- ) Keep your body parts out of the path of the blade/tool.

    I'm thinking another might be 'Select the appropriate tool for the job.'

    Let's hear yours!
  2. Texan Scott

    Texan Scott Well-Known Member

    Never cut toward your body, and never use it as any tool other than a knife (it isn't a prying, hammering, climbing, tool etc.)
  3. Mrcymstr

    Mrcymstr Well-Known Member

    I dont think there are 4 universal rules when it comes to knives. Knives are so versatile it's impossible and impractical to pigeonhole what they can and cannot do.

    I do agree with keeping it sharp but some situations insist you cut towards yourself. Whittling is the first that comes to my mind. Knives cannot be guided by rules but must only be guided by common sense.

    Maybe the only two iron clad rules would be keep it sharp and take your time and think.
  4. DNS

    DNS Well-Known Member

    5) Loaning knives to co-workers and friends is a bad idea unless you want it abused.
  5. Diamondback6

    Diamondback6 Well-Known Member

    Most important: NEVER point the blade at another person or hand it to another blade-first. Treat the blade like a gun's muzzle.

    You would not BELIEVE how many people in restaurants do this even with their sharpest steak knives... every time I try to educate them, and nobody seems to get it. *rolls eyes*
  6. PRM

    PRM Well-Known Member

    LOL... I never loan anything I wouldn't want to give away first. Getting your stuff back trashed is a fast track to hard feelings. Years ago when I first became an LEO, a good friend, also an LEO, asked to borrow a small pocket pistol to use as a back-up until he could afford one (wanted it for about a month). When he brought it back he said the firing pin broke... yea, along with all the rust and lint from no care or lubing, not to mention all the scratches from carrying it in the same pocket with keys and other. Never offered to have it repaired or apologized.

    Lesson learned.
  7. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    There have been 2 safety rules for as long as I can remember -

    Cut away from you.

    A sharp knife is safer than a dull knife.

    Practical rules have been =

    Its a knife and should only be used as a knife to avoid damage and injury.
  8. dayhiker

    dayhiker Well-Known Member

    The rules for a Cub Scout to earn his Whitlling Chip, a permit to carry :)

    Pocketknife rules

    A pocket knife is an important tool. You can do many things with its blades. The cutting blade is the one you will use most of the time. With it you can make shavings and chips and carve all kinds of things.

    Take good care of your knife.
    Always remember that a knife is a tool, not a toy.
    Use care to protect yourself and others.
    Think when you whittle or carve.
  9. Dark Sky Solutions

    Dark Sky Solutions New Member

    Yes. We are actually working on our whistling chip this year for my son. There are rules. Adults just say don't cut towards yourself or others. Bt to teach a 9 year old how to safely use a knife there has to be more rules. If you learn them you will be good to go for life.

    Sent from my IPad so... Ease off the spelling
  10. JShirley

    JShirley Administrator Staff Member

    If I am pulling a fixed blade out, if I know which side the spine is on, I firmly grasp the sheath on that side.

    I am very careful where the edge and point are, if I hand someone a blade. I want us both safe.

    I avoid touching the blade whenever possible. I especially don't touch the blade on someone else's custom knife or sword.
  11. PRM

    PRM Well-Known Member

    Yep..., whittling and whistling go hand-in-hand. :D
  12. conw

    conw Well-Known Member

    Not a rule, just a good tip: the closer the knife is to your body the more coordinated you are. The closer your elbow is to your ribcage, all the way up to aggressively clamping it down using your lats, the more control you have over the knife regardless of power you are putting behind the cuts.

    In addition to the remembering fact that, as others have said, you should always cut away from your body and body-parts, these keep me pretty safe.
  13. JShirley

    JShirley Administrator Staff Member

    That's a good tip, and I considered mentioning something about not over-extending. You will, however, lose some control if you pull the knife in too far, and tense your muscles. Especially when using a large blade fast, you need to not let the blade get too far from your "triangle of power". Also, keep your body behind your knife arm- you literally cannot cut yourself if the knife is always away from the rest of you.

    I've been a frequent user of kukuris and other very large knives for over 15 years, and I've never suffered any cuts requiring stitches in that time. A lot of other folks have, though- start out slow, be mindful of how you pull knives out of sheaths, and "listen" to the knife.

  14. RULE#1 never take one to a gun fight
  15. JShirley

    JShirley Administrator Staff Member

    Sorry, that's a damn silly, uneducated expression, for a bunch of reasons.

    A sharp knife at contact distance is at least as dangerous in moderately skilled hands as a firearm, will not malfunction because you're too close, and is harder to disarm.

  16. heron

    heron Well-Known Member

    Another I had forgotten, but saw here first -- somewhere -- "A dropped knife has no handle."

    Good so far. Any more?
  17. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

    Goodness gracious yes!!!

    If you drop it, LET IT FALL!
  18. conw

    conw Well-Known Member

    Thanks John!

    To clear one thing up, I kind of meant both tenets separately, using coordination as one measure and control as another.

    In other words for fine or precise cuts/usage of the blade you always want it close to your body (coordination). To get additional control you can tense up certain muscles (the lats and abs while clamping your elbow down) - control here being the ability to direct the knife with additional force and maintain equally safe and certain movement. As you state this is not the same as a true coordinated use of the blade, of course. If you are whittling or cutting a string off your nephew's shirt you probably won't lock down the blade for max control!

    Your tip about getting your body/bodyweight behind the blade is probably the ultimate way to powerfully and safely use the blade. Someone who understands this and understands "footwork" i.e. moving in relation to your opponent, pretty much knows the 101 of defensive knife use IMO.

    There are some exceptions for "chopping" but as discussions on this forum often state, "chopping" and typical knife use are different things.
  19. JShirley

    JShirley Administrator Staff Member

    Okay, I think we're on the same page. :)

    For anyone that's unfamiliar with the "triangle of power", bring your fingertips together in front of you body. Inside that triangle shape is where you will be strongest. Now, if you relax an arm down from that position, bringing your elbow close to your ribs, you should be in ideal control/power posture.
  20. oldbear

    oldbear Well-Known Member

    #4- a knife is not a toy, so don't treat it as such.

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