Balisongs/Butterfly Knives
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Thread: Balisongs/Butterfly Knives

  1. Balisongs/Butterfly Knives

    Let's talk about them!

    I live in PA, and although we're very gun friendly compared to other states, our knife laws are confusing, inconsistent, and a mess. A knife that may be legal in one town may not be legal in another. And don't get me started on Philadelphia, LOL.

    I managed to stay legal, as far as my knife purchases went. I'm lucky enough to live in a county where the only banned knives are switchblades and daggers. Any other kind is permissable.

    After a bit of research, I found a decision from the PA Superior Court, Commonwealth vs. Miles, that found balisongs/butterfly knives were not a prohibited weapon. This means they're okay to own and carry in PA, though a municipality may choose to ban them.

    I decided to make one part of my EDC, always, in addition to one traditional folder or fixed blade. They have a great many advantages over both knives, in certain respects, as long as the quality is good.

    1. Ease of carry. Any good balisong will have a good latch that will lock up tight in open/closed positions, making it safe for pocket carry. In addition, many come with pocket clips, for convenience. The handles provide the sheath.

    2. Safety. When open, and held firmly, it is simply impossible for the knife to accidentally close on your fingers. I have tried to find a way to get a balisong to fail in a manner that would prove hazardous to my fingers, and while I managed to destroy it in the process, I could not get it to close on my hand. This is its biggest advantage over traditional folders.

    Simply put, balisongs have the strongest locking mechanism available, by virtue of their design.

    Of course twirling it around can lead to bleeding, whcih leads to...

    3. It's a fun knife. I've always enjoyed opening and closing them, while thinking, while bored...just whenever my hand needed something to do. A few years ago, I discovered a whole subculture of people who perform tricks and maneuvers with them that I never would have imagined possible. I have since become a part of that culture. It's a bit like people who get into juggling, card tricks, and knife throwing.

    Now, the cons:

    1. They're scary. Thanks to weak-kneed people and Hollywood, these knives are in competition with switchblades as the Big Scary Knife of villians everywhere. I once had a neighbor call the police on me, while I was in my own yard flipping my knife around. I managed to smooth out the situation with both neighbor and LEO by showing them laws concerning them, but still...people will panic.

    2. They're still illegal in many places. Mostly because of what I just stated. Also, the importation of them was banned some time ago, which is a shame, because many excellent balisongs are available from Japanand the Philippines. Currently, the only legal balisongs to own must be produced stateside, and there are precious few companies making them, Benchmade, Spyderco, and Bradley being the most notable. There are other, smaller companies making excellent knives, however, Bladerunner Systems being at the top of the pile.

    I jsut wanted to know if anyone else here owned or carried them for EDC. I love balisongs. My current EDC rotation, as far as knives go, are HK Plan B, in my breast pocket, a Benchmade 51 Morpho balisong, and a Spyderco Chinook II.

  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Glendale, Arizona
    I've always been fascinated by them. Here in Arizona they're legal, so I think I'll pick up a couple one of these days. This gal seems to know how to handle them.


  4. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    State of Confusion
    If you're gonna go around then do it like a white man. Get a friggin gun.
    You know this is a joke right?

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    TN, the patron state of shootin stuff
    Quote Originally Posted by billt View Post
    I've always been fascinated by them. Here in Arizona they're legal, so I think I'll pick up a couple one of these days. This gal seems to know how to handle them.


    If she can field strip an AR-15 and cook she would be a fine catch.
    Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress;
    but I repeat myself.
    Mark Twain

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    NE WA, alongside the Pend Oreille River

    I regularly carry a knife, at least a couple.

    Small Schrade (US Made) pocket knife, small Swiss Army pocket knife and a Leatherman multi-tool on my belt. Living on 5+ acres having the Leatherman is always welcome for the little tasks that seem to pop up daily.
    USCG (Ret.)
    Distinguished NRA Life Member

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