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Nice knife for self- protection?

Discussion in 'Non-Firearm Weapons' started by lookshigh123, Sep 13, 2010.

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  1. lookshigh123

    lookshigh123 member

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    Hi, there. Would u wear a knife for self-protection? If so, what kind of stuff do u like to use? What do u think about this Browning Stag Skinner Folding Knife? Is it nice stuff for self-protection?
     
  2. Rail Driver

    Rail Driver Member

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    I keep a couple knives on me most, if not all the time. One's a 3" drop point folder (linerlock) and good for cutting anything from a seatbelt to being used as a flat-head screwdriver in a pinch. The other I keep is a tiny little Xikar folder with a straight blade, great for stripping wires, opening envelopes and packages, cleaning my nails... you name it. In a pinch, if I absolutely must defend myself and don't have my gun for some reason, I'd probably pick up something stout and use it before I'd use my knife... If you're going to use a knife in a fight, even with a LOT of training, you need to be ready to go home looking like the guy in this link:

    http://www.tigerdroppings.com/rant/messagetopic.asp?p=5749923

    That said, if it's all I've got, it's better than harsh words, and can certainly do the trick.
     
  3. RatDrall

    RatDrall Member

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    Beware folders made from 440 stainless, it's generally junk steel, especially with the bad heat treats most use.

    Your best bet for a starter folder is a Spyderco Delica or Endura. You can get them at Walmart, and they are by far the best knife for the money you are likely to come across.

    If you want to defend yourself with or against a knife, you're going to need some serious training. I'd recommend starting at any local Fillipino martial arts school (kali, escrima, etc.). You can find one at fmatalk.com . Playing with knives is a science and takes some getting used to before it is remotely safe, especially when you start bringing the stress of a fight into the mix.

    You can't stab or cut yourself with harsh words, or have them taken away and used to kill you.
     
  4. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    I carry a knife as a tool that also would serve for defensive purposes. As a tool it has to be strong, secure when opened and hold an edge while as a defensive knife it has to be quick to open. The Browning has most of the good characteristics for a tool, but lacks the "quick" aspect. That said, before the advent of pocket clips and one hand opening designs, plenty of people have used classic nail-nick back-lock folders for self defense.

    Using a knife defensively beyond the very basic level requires training and commitment as has been pointed out. If you're thinking about using a knife as a primary or secondary defensive tool then you're missing other options that are often better (see the various stick discussions). If you're including it in a defensive "tool box" you need to have skill to use it safely and training to help develop the skill.

    As to 440 generally being junk, that's an accurate statement when the manufacturer won't tell you which 440 series steel is used. In the case of this Browning they've used 440-C which is a perfectly good steel when properly heat treated (like any steel, heat treat is one of the critical requirements).
     
  5. usmccpl

    usmccpl Member

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    Always have some kind of knife on me. Usually now its a Spyderco Police and a Benchmade auto. When i can I also have a fixed blade of some kind on me. You never know when terror will strike and you might not be able to get to your gun so a knife and skillset to use it(which I do have)should always be with you too.
     
  6. JTW Jr.

    JTW Jr. Member

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    If you truly plan to use it for self defense , go with the longest fixed blade you can legally carry ( open or concealed - your choice ) . When the crap hits the fan , and gross motor skills go out the window , getting that folder open when you need it will be very challenging.

    And yes I have seen folders with the waves , flippers , etc....you are still at a disadvantage if you have to unfold it before you can use it.

    Folders are carried because they are more convenient , not because they are more effective.
     
  7. zignal_zero

    zignal_zero Member

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    this is my logic, as well. fixed blade, long sturdy blade, and a good enough handle/gaurd to keep your hand from sliding down the blade when you contact something harder than anticipated. also, i like a tip centered in the width of the blade. i feel it makes thrusting more natural, that could just be me though. and ABSOLUTELY NO sawbacks :D
     
  8. Yo Mama

    Yo Mama Member

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    As others said, fixed blade is the best, but usually harder to carry vs. a folder daily.

    Most important issue with folders is lock type and steel quality. You can break any knife, but a strong lock will hold in most cases.

    IMO, through dialogue here I've learned to trust and love the axis lock from Benchmade. I can't say enough good things about it, and it replaced my Spyderco Native for EDC (although I would also heartily recommend the Native as well).
     
  9. CoastieShep

    CoastieShep Member

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  10. dairycreek

    dairycreek Member

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    I do wear a knife for self protection it is Kershaw boot knife
    BOOTKNIFE.jpg which I wear on my belt horizontally. Great knife for the purpose. Above all, get some self defense training if you are going to use a knife.
     
  11. Onward Allusion

    Onward Allusion Member

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  12. Black Toe Knives

    Black Toe Knives Member

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    Never bring a Knife to a gun fight.
     
  13. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    +1
    There is an awful lot to be said about that.
    People don't fight with knifes or get in fist fights anymore.
    They just pop a cap on ya azz.

    And never bring a belt knife to a city that has local laws against them.

    I'd suggest the OP check his local laws concerning knife carry, legal blade length, etc. before he gets too far along.

    rc
     
  14. RatDrall

    RatDrall Member

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    Gotta run with what you brung.

    Nothing is everything all of the time; guns aren't death rays that guarentee victory...
     
  15. Vonderek

    Vonderek Member

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    I recall a great thread a while back by Carl Levitian that related an experience he had in a coffee shop when a roided-up guy came in looking to kick his butt over some perceived insult. IIRC a simple Opinel in Carl's hand changed the macho guy's attitude instantly and prevented a possible beatdown. Not saying it would work in every case but in this case it did. No sober person wants to get cut. So yeah, I think a knife has a place in a SD scenario. But you better know how to use it and be mentally prepared to use it.

    Here's the thread:
    http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=497925&highlight=opinel
     
  16. Carl Levitian

    Carl Levitian member

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    For what it's worth, what you don't need for defense is a nice knife. And you don't want it hair whittling razor sharp either. Think 'one shot deal'here. You're going to loose it to the police, or ditch it in the next dumpster you pass, if you end up using it on someone. Depending on the circumstances.

    Yes, I'm sure the Spyderco's and Benchmade's and the other fancy knives are good knives, even may be very good knives, but they are over kill for what you need on the street. Look at what most street criminals use, there's a method to their madness. Quality of blade does not even come into this. We're not field dressing a buck here, just slashing or stabbing a criminal to get them off you, or buy you some space to get the heck out of Dodge. The knife that will skin out X number of deer before needing to be sharpened is not needed here.

    The street punk will use a cheap serrated edge paring knife or other kitchen knife he stole from a discount store, and he may even have a cardboard and duct tape sheath for it. For slashing and stabbing a human body, it's fine. The human body has about as much resistance to being cut or stabbed as a bowl of noodles covered by a layer of cloth. That's not much. Anything made of metal and pointy will do the job. For sharp, you just want it 'prison shank sharp' like in stropped on a sidewalk or cement floor. If you have it really sharp, the cut will not even be felt right away. Think about the last time you cut yourself with a really really sharp knife, and it didn't even start bleeding for a bit. That's not what you want. you want the criminal to feel it immediatly, to feel pain. A razor sharp edge will neatly slice and not tear the tissue being cut. A course ripping edge is what you want. This can be put on any gas station 4.99 Spyderco knock off. If the knock off has some nice big serrations, even better. You want ripping, not neat cuts.

    I remember one call we rolled on when I was with the Trinidad PD. A lady who was routinely beat up by her drucken husband had enough finally. In the middle of a beating, she grabbed a 1.99 cheap serrated bread knife off the kitchen table and rammed it into his big beer belly. Dropped him right to the floor. We got there and before the EMT's, and he was laying there moaning. The blade was so thin it wobbled every time he breathed in or out. Was weird to watch. Breath in, wobble wobble one way, breath out, wobble wobble the other way. But it did a number. Several hours of emergency surgery and he lived, but it was a close call. I gained a lot of respect for cheap knives as a police officer. Of the couple of homicides I handled as a police officer where a knife was the weapon, I never saw one that cost over 10 dollars. One stands out in my mind, because a cheap Rapala fillet knife was used. It slid right in between the ribs and into the heart. Death was instant. The Las Animas county coroner said he was dead by the time he hit the ground.

    If you want a nice knife like you'd rather drive a Lexus rather than a Toyota, that's okay. But don't think a good knife is needed to inflict massive harm in a defense situation. Any piece of sharp steel will work just fine. It won't matter if it's a 100 dollar Benchmade or a cheap 5 dollar Chinese knock off of some tactical thing.

    It's more important to know what your doing with, it than what the tool is.

    The modern martial arts dojos don't really give good training on knife tactics. I wasted a couple years in Tang soo doo before I quit. The commercial studios just teach the standard defense from over head ice pick grip stuff, not the real street in your face stuff that you'll run into. The Philipino martial arts are better for bladed training.

    The most important thing on the street is to just keep your eyes open. The street punks always work in at least two's. One will have a knife, and one will hang back acting as lookout. If you're not sleep walking, You'll see it coming, and that's the time to take out your own knife, even if to 'clean you fingernails' with it. Like a firearm, the sight of a weapon in a would-be victims hand is very very often enough to make the punk look elseware. Predators are looking for a victim, not a fight. They don't want to get hurt, and they have a very good idea of what a knife can do. I know there's all kinds of internet guru's preaching don't show your weapon. Bull hocky.

    I can only go by my own experiance as a white haired old fart high on the predators hit list profile. Twice in the last few years I've had the would be predator back off from me because I had a knife in my hand. One time was I was stumbling along in condition white, and didn't notice the ambush untill almost too late. All I had was a ridiculous little Buck Hartsook in my hand, and some very harsh foul language. It was enough. The other time, I had a guy that was two of me, maybe three, but he didn't want to get in arms reach of me and a very humble little Opinel number 8. Both times I went on with my life because they backed off from a white haired skinny old guy with a knife.

    The kind of knife you carry won't matter a bit. It's attitude and what you can do with it. There's guys in the cell block that if they have a home made shank, they'll put away a yuppy commando with a high end tactical.

    Like has been said, software over hardware.
     
  17. JTW Jr.

    JTW Jr. Member

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    Disagree , why you want a knife other than as sharp as it could be ? That is like saying you don't want a firearm with pinpoint accuracy for self defense.
     
  18. Yo Mama

    Yo Mama Member

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    Nope, but you are close. You can have knowedge and ability, but without tooling it's nothing. Yes a 2 dollar knife will work....but I've seen a cheap lock fold onto fingers more than a few times.
     
  19. shockwave

    shockwave Member

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    It may have been the case that your school or instructor wasn't capable of teaching knife combat and defense, and I'm sorry if you feel your studies were not profitable. I can assure you and all readers here that there are good schools that teach realistic weapon attack and defense. As with anything else, you have to search out good instruction - it ain't falling off trees.

    Yes, Filipino and Indonesian arts, kali, escrima, arnis, silat - do teach intensive bladework and are recommended to those with interest. And you are correct, the techniques shown in Black Belt magazine will get you killed. So don't waste time on that nonsense.

    I see you've drawn a critique on the "sharp blade" issue. Rather than go into that, I'll just say that a good defensive knife should have some deterrent value, some brandishing qualities. Be sure you can execute the Brownie Pop opening. If you decide to brandish it, might as well put the opponent on notice that you know what you're doing and have prepared for it.

    Your encounter in the bakery was highly typical; just the presence of the edged weapon changed all the dynamics. Any blade can cause serious damage. The goal, as with a handgun, is to hopefully leave the engagement without having to create a dead or injured person.

    So a nice knife for self protection to my thinking is something like a Cold Steel Ti Lite. A rock-solid, proven strong blade with a variety of opening options. A kerambit is also a nice choice.
     
  20. Black Toe Knives

    Black Toe Knives Member

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    18'' Bowie is always a winner then. You can actually hid behind it when they start shooting.
     
  21. JTW Jr.

    JTW Jr. Member

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    There is a term I hadn't heard in many years. I thought that , along with other " dramatic " opening techniques went out years ago.

    When you need it , any wasted motion is too much.

    Much like firearms , you can train or practice , but until you actually have to use a knife or firearm for self defense , one never really knows what or how their training worked.

    Simple is better , if you must rely on it for self defense , go with less moving parts , less wasted motion. Nix the fancy opening techniques required with a folder , go with a fixed blade , sharp , accessible , with a solid (non-slippery) grip.
     
  22. Carl Levitian

    Carl Levitian member

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    "Disagree , why you want a knife other than as sharp as it could be ? That is like saying you don't want a firearm with pinpoint accuracy for self defense. "


    It's a matter of pain and instant recognition of being hurt.

    I never said dull, just said rougher edge. Big difference.

    How often have you cut yourself with a very sharp knife and not even realized it for a moment? Or cut yourself and it didn't even start to bleed for a bit?

    On the other hand, have you ever cut yourself on a jagged piece of sheet metal, and felt the instant burning pain? That's the big difference of the nerve endings being severed with almost surgical sharp blade, and being torn by a jagged edge like a serrated edge. Or an edge with a rough file like sharp edge. Either one will cut deep, but one is going to hurt way worse from the second of cutting. Very distracting to say the least, and that is what you want. Ever wonder why a paper cut hurts worse than a shaving cut? The edge of the paper cut you because it's so thin, but the edge under magnification is actually very rough. But you hardly feel the razor cut on your face. Same thing in knives.

    Knife knuts, being knife knuts, obsess over their objects of obsession sometimes to the point of being counter productive. The street guy doesn't care about how his knife looks, or if it can shave hair. He just wants it to be able to inflict serious or fatal injury if need be. And he knows from his time in the joint, the big house, or what ever he calls it, that it does not take that much. The human body is a frail, poor design. Thin skinned and delicate. A sharpened toothbrush handle can puncture an abdominal wall with ease. What do you think is going to happen when a Taylor brand Smith and Wesson 10 dollar knife is used? It ain't gonna be any less deadly than a Sebenzza. Same thing when given a good mill smooth file sharp with a wee bit of smoothing out on a rough carborunum stone. That rough but sharp edge is going to rip right through the flesh, tendons, and ligaments on the hands and wrists of your attacker, but it's going to hurt like the h--- immediatly. Not a minute from now, but right now. You want your attacker to feel the pain right through any adrenaline rush he has going.

    The other thing to consider, is clothing. A very very sharp knife with a fine polished edge from the 1000 grit hone, is going to slide on a lot of textiles. The rougher mini serrations of a course edge is going to grab and cut the material. With a short blade like on most folders, if you slide an inch or so of blade before it gets through, you've lost half the blade length before cutting into your attacker. You can't afford to loose edge in a fight. Getting through the sleeve of that hoodie and into the motor tendons and nerves of the arm under it all, is going to take a rougher edge to rip through.

    I spent the first third of my life running around the streets of my native D.C. I'm a city boy, born and bred, and I admit that some of the people I hung out with as a teen were not the best. That was one reason dad moved the family out to the suburbs; to keep me and my siblings in a better environment. But I rode the bus and went back downtown anyways. After spending a lifetime as a city guy, I know what's going to work on the street. I must have survived to become an old man somehow. And what's going to work as a defense knife is not anywhere close to what a knife knut is going to have to dress out that buck. 99% of what you think is important in a knife, is not.

    When it happenes, it's going to be right up close in your face, and it's going to be over in a few seconds, one way or the other. If you don't already have it in your hand, ready to use, forget it. Youré done. Forget all this bull hockey about waved blades, brownie pops, assited opening, or any other stuff from holyweird movies or knife magazines. That's why the homie has that serrated cheap kitchen knife in his sleeve or in the big center pocket of the hoodie he has on as he approaches you. It's already in his hand and ready. Question is, are you?

    Life on the street is very much like life in a prison yard. You have to keep your eyes open for clues, watch the people around you or approaching you, and if someone you don't know is trying to get close to you, assume the worst and be ready to meet it. And forget everything the knife magazines have told you.
     
  23. JTW Jr.

    JTW Jr. Member

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    Have to agree to disagree , as I have never found a toothy edge , what most call a rougher edge to cut better than fine edge. Rougher edges might work better for a sawing motion.

    Having cut many fabrics in the shop , sharper has always been better , be it cutting 8 , 9 , 10 , 12 oz leather , nylon , denim , etc. Be it shears or knife , sharper has always proved better in my use. Can you get buy with a less sharp knife , perhaps , but in most cases people who carry that blade for SD also use it for other uses. So while their "toothy" edge may be ok initially , with use it breaks down and becomes "buck-toothy" ;) , and then cuts no so well.

    That I highly doubt sir. Don't discount my views merely because I prefer quality over crap.

    That I agree with 100%.

    I agree with that with the exception , of my thought being " assume the worst and be ready to avoid it if possible ".

    Given the option , apply liberal doses of 230gr attitude adjusters until the threat has ceased. :)
     
  24. Vonderek

    Vonderek Member

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    I think everyone who visits this forum would agree with that 100%. However, the OP wrote this thread in the Non-Firearms section specifically regarding a knife for self-defense, not a handgun.
     
  25. Hawaiian

    Hawaiian Member

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    You want to carry a knife that is normally used as a tool. A simple clip point or drop point blade.

    The knife you use may be shown to a jury by an overzealous prosecutor. Yes, he may not buy your claim of self defense or that the treat warranted the use of deadly force. If you used some ‘tactical black knife’ with serrations designed for ripping flesh, or the tanto or dagger blade that was designed for stabbing innocent people, he will try and convince the jury that you carried this evil knife with the intent of harming others.

    I collect auto knives and balisongs. While legal to carry here, I would never even think of carrying or using one for self defense. The prosecutor would have a field day with one of those evil knives in front of the jury.

    I have some very nice, very sharp folders that look more like a gentleman’s pocket knife that will cut or stab just as well as a ‘tactikewl’ knife. Many makers are now using orange G10 for scales on some knives. Most people that might be on a jury will relate the color orange to a tool or to safety.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2010
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