Pro's and Cons of carrying a SD knife

SFC JeffJ

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Do you carry a knife for purely defensive purposes? Fixed blade or folder? Would it be a bad idea where you reside? What can you carry where you live?
 

tellner

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I have carried a knife of one sort or another for about thirty years. While I generally choose ones that are useful for daily tasks I carry ones that can be used for self defense. A utility knife is carried all the time and used often. A knife that you use all the time becomes so familiar that it's almost a part of you. My folding knife is with me in my dreams. It may not be perfectly optimized for fighting, but it will be comfortable in your hand and do exactly what you want it to. The very few - thank the Good Lord - times I have had to draw a knife in self defense the ease and speed with which it came to the hand probably did more to deter the attackers than my unimpressive overweight physical presence.

A designated weapon is carried sometimes used almost never unless you have a specialized job in the military or do undercover police work. If you do, consult with your training officer. I might have a few suggestions, but the voice of trained experience is to be preferred.

The people who say that fixed blade knives are superior have a point. They are faster to deploy. They don't have a locking mechanism that can fail. You don't have to make three separate fine motions to open them and then hope you got it locked in place. You just grab, pull and there's the knife.

What do I carry? Usually a waved Endura just like the one in the picture,

These problems are somewhat reduced if your knife has the patented Emerson wave feature (see below) or you have used a zip tie appropriately.

wavedendura05.jpg


Folders are easier to carry discreetly. In many areas every cop and rescue worker has one; they're familiar where your Urban Combat Tanto with its paracord wrapping will get unfriendly police attention. They are compact. And they are more likely to be used as tools for that all-important casual competence.

The law is an important consideration. If you carry a knife be sure you understand the law regarding carry and ownership. I can carry an automatic knife out of my house as long as it isn't concealed. If my shirt covers too much, I'm committing a crime. If I put it in the glove box and drive a few miles North it's a felony with interstate transportation charges added. A fixed blade knife may or may not be legal to carry openly, but can definitely lose you points on the P.A.T. - Police Attitude Test. A folder has disadvantages but is more innocuous and less likely to scare the people around you. If they do get scared you have problems.
 

Blindside

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Do you carry a knife for purely defensive purposes? Fixed blade or folder? Would it be a bad idea where you reside? What can you carry where you live?

I regularly carry a folder, Emerson Commander, waved like the Endura Tellner posted. Here in Wyoming there aren't any rules against carrying a knife, nothing on blade length or fixed or unfixed, I just can't carry it concealed.

I don't carry it just for defensive purposes, I regularly use it for other uses, but I selected it so that it would be effective should I need it for SD.

Lamont
 

MA-Caver

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I carry a folder with a (partially serrated) blade that is 3 and 5/8ths in length. It's nothing at all to deploy it, two simple motions, withdrawing the knife from my back pocket and a quick flick of the wrist and it's ready to go. The locking mechanism is such that it'd be pretty hard to fail, but I do the upkeep on the device to ensure that it doesn't.
But if asked, I always refer to the knife as a tool not a weapon, though I doubt that'll be enough to get it through airport security... but since I don't frequent airports I don't worry too much about being asked about it.
Dunno about the laws here, but I know enough not to brazenly carry it around where it wouldn't be appreciated. It sits nice and comfy in my back pocket and there it stays until it's needed ... as a tool. :uhyeah:
 

Doc_Jude

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I regularly carry a folder, Emerson Commander, waved like the Endura Tellner posted. Here in Wyoming there aren't any rules against carrying a knife, nothing on blade length or fixed or unfixed, I just can't carry it concealed.

I don't carry it just for defensive purposes, I regularly use it for other uses, but I selected it so that it would be effective should I need it for SD.

Lamont

That's funny. Here in CA I can carry any length of folder but I have to carry concealed. Laws are so weird. I used to carry 6" Cold Steel Voyager, traded it with a friend for his brand new 5", but now I just carry my Recon1 (plain clip point) and my SwissTool for utility use. My folder is kept shaving sharp for "emergencies".
 

exile

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I always—and I mean that, always, even to the symphony! (who knows who's in that parking garage, eh?)—carry a Jim Wagner Reality-Based folder from B繹ker, along with a flick knife that I don't have a picture of. The B繹ker blade is for my right hand, the flick knife for my left.
 

shesulsa

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I always - *always* have at least one folder on me.
 

Cruentus

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But if asked, I always refer to the knife as a tool not a weapon,

....

It sits nice and comfy in my back pocket and there it stays until it's needed ... as a tool. :uhyeah:

I've said this on more then 1 occasion here on the forum...

We may see knives as useful weapons, but the law generally does not see them as something that a "reasonable person" would carry purely for "self-defense" purposes in most cases. We can get into the particulars of the laws of each state really to no avail, because regardless of what length or type or concealment requirements there are, it will always boil down to whether or not the judge or jury sees you as behaving as a reasonable person would at the time of the attack.

It will be difficult in most self-defense circumstances to convince the law enforcement officers on the scene, all the way down to the jury when you are in court that you are a reasonable person who acted in a reasonable way when you popped your "emerson commander" (or "tactical folder" or "military fighting knife" or whatever they decide to put in their report) that you carry with you daily just in case you have to throw down and stab some fool; that is, when your not busy training in "knife fighting." From the LE report to court to the jailhouse, if you "win" on the street with your knife, if you do not play it safe you will lose in the legal system in most cases, even if you weren't the criminal initially.

Look, this may be hard for people here to understand, because we know as being self-defense minded people that it is perfectly reasonable to carry a tool for self-defense on a daily bases, be it a knife or pepper spray or whatever. But most other people out there who aren't us see the knife as something that a criminal would carry on a daily basis to harm people, not as anything any "reasonable" person would carry. And these "other people" are the same people who will be arresting you, prosecuting you, judging you, and fining and imprisoning you.

I don't know if MaCaver actually listened to me and others in previous discussions, or is just really smart. Or perhaps it's both. But, I like his style. You have to play it safe with this one.

What do I carry solely for self-defense? My pistol. I suggest that people get one and get licensed to carry it if they want to carry something lethal that is only for self-defense purposes.

But, as we know, a knife does make a great weapon, if you need one. I carry a knife daily. But, I also carry a multi-tool and a flashlight. All of these items are handy at my job. My knife is a utility item 1st, as is my multi-tool. Either could be used as a weapon if needed; just like my briefcase, or my pen, or my jacket, or my boot. But none of these items are carried solely to be a weapon; and this should be especially the case for your knife.

Anyway, don't think that I am not in favor of carrying knives; they make great utility items and survival items, urban or otherwise, and I think that every prepared person should carry one. However, do yourself a huge favor and don't just be carrying one for "self-defense." True self preservation always goes beyond the actual incident.

That is my opinion on the subject. I am not trying to put anyone on the spot here or put people down for their choices, because I think that most of you will actually agree with me. I just want to make people aware, that's all...

C.
 

Brian R. VanCise

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I carry a knife for daily reasons as a "tool" that allows me to perform and finish daily tasks that seem to come my way. So I need functional knives that allow me to open boxes, packages (you know the kind I am talking about), cut cord, etc. When purchasing a tool like this I also look at it's spec's to see if it can also be a functional self defense tool in a pinch. That way it has dual usage. So I always have a knife on me that is a tool for daily use that is also a self defense item if needed.

So yes I have one or two knive's on me daily that in a pinch I could use to protect myself or my loved ones. Knives can be great equalizer's but you definately need to know the law's of your area before you use one in a self defense encounter. That may help you through the legal system.
icon6.gif
 

Lisa

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No self defense knives for this girl.

I am not trained enough to use them and they would probably just get me in more trouble when someone stronger and faster takes it away from me.

I do carry a small pocket knife with me (its in my purse) which I usually forget I even have until I need one of the utility parts to it. It has come in handy at times. :)
 

exile

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If forced to explain why I am carrying two extremely sharp knifes, I would invoke the overpackaging defense: you cannot extricate anything you buy these days from its shrink-wrapped hard plastic confinement without something approximating a folded-steel katana. Light bulbs, CDs... hell, even batteries are now enclosed in almost impenetrable transparent armor... :rolleyes:
 
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SFC JeffJ

SFC JeffJ

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I used to carry a small fixed blade knife expressly for self defense purposes. When a friend of mine, who is a former prosecutor and currently a defense lawyer, saw it on my hip he gave me the rundown. He told me if I ever had to use it he could probably get me off at a cost of about $20,000. Since that conversation, that knife has been collecting dust in a drawer.

Now I just carry an inexpensive folder that always has a little tape residue on it. I train with it for SD purposes but am far more likely to deploy the pistol on my hip. Like Cruentus said, it is much more prosecutor friendly, and chances are a much more appropriate choice in a life or death situation.
 

shesulsa

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No self defense knives for this girl.

I am not trained enough to use them and they would probably just get me in more trouble when someone stronger and faster takes it away from me.
:partyon::partyon::partyon:
:bow:
 

MA-Caver

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Originally Posted by Lisa
No self defense knives for this girl.

I am not trained enough to use them and they would probably just get me in more trouble when someone stronger and faster takes it away from me.
:partyon::partyon::partyon:
:bow:
Well naturally bow to the lady... she has a CHEW to protect her.

But seriously, she (Lisa) does have a great point that screams Common Sense. Don't carry just for the sake of carrying. Gun, knife, kubotan, whatever! if you don't know how to use it. It'll just simply get you killed.
 

Cruentus

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I used to carry a small fixed blade knife expressly for self defense purposes. When a friend of mine, who is a former prosecutor and currently a defense lawyer, saw it on my hip he gave me the rundown. He told me if I ever had to use it he could probably get me off at a cost of about $20,000. Since that conversation, that knife has been collecting dust in a drawer.

Now I just carry an inexpensive folder that always has a little tape residue on it. I train with it for SD purposes but am far more likely to deploy the pistol on my hip. Like Cruentus said, it is much more prosecutor friendly, and chances are a much more appropriate choice in a life or death situation.

You could carry a fixed blade, if your job or daily activities allowed for one to be useful as a utility item. I know some people where that is the case. The idea is, we have to pass the reasonableness test (by their standards, not ours)...

But seriously, she (Lisa) does have a great point that screams Common Sense. Don't carry just for the sake of carrying. Gun, knife, kubotan, whatever! if you don't know how to use it. It'll just simply get you killed.

On a positive note, though, knives are extremely easy for someone to learn how to use. In one 4-hour block, a smaller female could have the physical tools for self-defense with a knife. The legal issues will still apply though...

:)
 

jks9199

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You could carry a fixed blade, if your job or daily activities allowed for one to be useful as a utility item. I know some people where that is the case. The idea is, we have to pass the reasonableness test (by their standards, not ours)...



On a positive note, though, knives are extremely easy for someone to learn how to use. In one 4-hour block, a smaller female could have the physical tools for self-defense with a knife. The legal issues will still apply though...

:)
I'd have repped you for this and your previous post regarding whether it's really wise to carry a knife solely as a weapon, but I gotta spread the love before I can do that.

The Code of Virginia prohibits, in various places, carrying any "any dirk, bowie knife, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, machete, razor, slingshot, spring stick, metal knucks, or blackjack" concealed (as an aside, thanks to the efforts of La Mara Salvatrucha & other Hispanic gangs, it is also illegal to brandish a machete in Virginia now), or, separately, possessing any knife greater than 4 inches in blade length on school property (exceptions exist for shop tools and cooking knives). The question of whether or not a knife qualifies as a tool is somewhat subjective... but a fixed blade is much harder to justify as a general rule to most cops. After all, most fixed blade knife-tools are specialty knives like pruning knives or carpet knives, not a tanto or bowie knife...

Of course, the code only prohibits carrying them concealed. If you want to walk down the street wearing a huge two-handed broadsword, you're not breaking the law. You'll probably find yourself making the acquiantance of some cops, though...
 

exile

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If you want to walk down the street wearing a huge two-handed broadsword, you're not breaking the law. You'll probably find yourself making the acquiantance of some cops, though...

... and possibly some soft-spoken men and women in white coats...
 

Cruentus

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I'd have repped you for this and your previous post regarding whether it's really wise to carry a knife solely as a weapon, but I gotta spread the love before I can do that.

The Code of Virginia prohibits, in various places, carrying any "any dirk, bowie knife, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, machete, razor, slingshot, spring stick, metal knucks, or blackjack" concealed (as an aside, thanks to the efforts of La Mara Salvatrucha & other Hispanic gangs, it is also illegal to brandish a machete in Virginia now), or, separately, possessing any knife greater than 4 inches in blade length on school property (exceptions exist for shop tools and cooking knives). The question of whether or not a knife qualifies as a tool is somewhat subjective... but a fixed blade is much harder to justify as a general rule to most cops. After all, most fixed blade knife-tools are specialty knives like pruning knives or carpet knives, not a tanto or bowie knife...

Of course, the code only prohibits carrying them concealed. If you want to walk down the street wearing a huge two-handed broadsword, you're not breaking the law. You'll probably find yourself making the acquiantance of some cops, though...

I usually carry two broadswords, and I tell people that it is for opening my mail... ;)

Thanks for the comments. Of course, fixed blade carry will depend on what is acceptable in your local, and what the laws are, as well as what it is for. I agree that many cops and courts might be a little curious about the true motives of someone carrying a fixed blade like a tanto or bowie. However, in many places in Northern and Western Michigan, this is much more common and isn't seen as unacceptable.

So it all depends. As I said, general rule would be to have your carry tool be reasonable by the standards of the people, police, and court system in the area your in, not just by your standards. Hell, if I went by my standards of reasonableness, I would see no problems with me carrying a surpressed M4 with a 203 and A-cog, along with my new fixed blade custom and a few flashbangs and percussions. :lol: Hey, you know... we here in Michigan are hunters. I mean to test out a flashbang with a group of deer, to see if it has the same effect as headlights. :rofl: But seriously, I think that people need to not simply make excuses as to why they think it is reasonable to carry something, and need to instead see it through the eyes of the people in that locale...

:)
 

kenpodude

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IN utah we can wear anything that is not concealed. I choose to carry a Kershaw. its great for what ever I need, and dosent bring unwanted attention from macho guys and smart alicks.
 

KempoKop

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Generally I always carry a defense knife. If I am going out at night or traveling I carry my off-duty weapon a Springfield XD sub compact.
Even as small as the gun is its hard to conceal on warm days or evening so that is where a nice quality folder comes into play.

I collect tactical folders but my favorites are:

REKAT SIFU (have both the more common black handle and the very very rare red handle ) AWSOME knife to bad they stopped making them.
http://images.google.com/imgres?img...=+sifu+knife&start=60&ndsp=20&um=1&hl=en&sa=N

Benchmade AFCK Axis Lock
Spyderco Civilian - spooky knife
Camillus Cuda Max

All have great strong locks and the bechmade and spyderco are 4" blades and the Camillus and REKAT have just over 5" blades.
 

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