Training Blade Reviews: Warrior Craft and Sharkee

I've got a bunch of the Sharkee trainers. I really like them and use them extensively. I picked them up after seeing everyone using them at one of Jeff Chung's seminars, though that wasn't the first time I had seen them (e.g. my JKD instructor has some). Aluminum blades have a certain realism that I like--the feel of metal--but I agree with you: I like how the Sharkees feel in my hands.

When sparring with them, note that while they're rounded they are still hard enough that a hard strike such as an abanico-style strike will hurt and may bruise.

The aluminum kerambit trainer from Mr. Dionaldo looks cool!
I won't actively spar with anything more rigid than the hard rubber Applegate-Fairbairn trainers, and even those are a bit too rigid for absolute safety. Rigid plastic and metal trainers are vital, I think, for practicing disarms, mechanics, forms, and any and all techniques solo, but are just not safe enough for active mock combat. Anything that narrow yet rigid could hurt someone badly when stuck into any of the body's soft targets.

Cold Steel's Warrior's Edge series, which I'm in the process of reviewing, includes a segment on how to make your own trainer from PVC and some other materials. The end product is basically just a big cylinder -- rigid, but blunt enough that it poses no danger.
The A-F trainers can be worse than the Sharkee's; you can generate a nasty whip action with them!
And the kerambit trainers rock; if only I could find a similar live blade at a reasonable cost.:(
They can do that, yes, but when you attempt to shove one through your abdomen they do indeed bend, which is better than something that doesn't give at all. ;)

There are several different kerambits on the market -- how much would you like to spend?
Would I like to spend...or will I spend...:D
Seriously, I am in the market for something along the lines of the Dionaldo trainer; one piece/wrapped handle, minimalist, but not quite as minimalist as the LaGriffe.
I have seen various Asian made version offered, but I am looking more for a one peice designe than a pinned grip.
Yes, I have seen the Emerson folding model; very cool, but more than I want to spend; same for the strider fixed blade.
Now, having set out all those parameters, I'd love some feedback!
PS looking forward to a review on the CS tapes.
As an aside, you can get an "Impact Kerambit" cheap:

It's a cool less-than-lethal implement.

Now for bladed kerambits:

I have no experience with this brand, but WOW Inc. produces these BOSS model kerambits:

I've contacted these folks to see if they'd be willing to submit some pieces for review, but I haven't heard back yet.

I'll be sure to post when the CS reviews are done.
Yeah; I've seen their page but never heard anything pro or con about their products.
Keep us posted.
Well, to be honest, they're not all that expensive and I like the look of the BOSS kerambit, so I just might break down and buy one if they won't send one specifically for the review.
We've used Ray's training blades (and those of arnisandyz) for sparring on a few occasions. Yes, the potential for serious injury exists, since you are using metal blades. Even dull, there is imminent danger of a puncture wound or blunt trauma. However, with skilled and controlled practitioners, it isn't terribly dangerous. We (or rather, I) got a few knocks on the noggin (more harmful to the blade than my skull o' cement) and a couple of other minor injuries or scares, but nothing that would make the wife panic . We also use them for our more intense drills, which usually involves someone (me) getting tossed around like a ragdoll.

As long as the people using them have enough control, I think the training blades are perfectly acceptable for sparring. However, I DO NOT recommend beginning students to use them for that purpose.

You'll put yer eye out.

Having used a couple myself, I highly recommend Ray's training blades. And if he ever decides to make more, those of arnisandyz as well. I can't ever see using a wooden or plastic training blade after using the aluminum trainers.

Originally posted by Cthulhu
but nothing that would make the wife panic u

Heh. Arnis doesn't give me that problem but after every BJJ class she takes a look at me and hints that I'm too old for this!
So far, I've been fortunate enough to escape serious injury (knock on rattan). I'm not so worried about an injury to myself, but what my wife may do to my instructors should I get seriously hurt! :D

I guess I have trust issues. I trust my control, but nobody else's.

I think there's a continuum of trainers, each with overlapping zones of use:

  • soft rubber -- for active sparring
  • hard rubber -- for slightly more realistic active sparring
  • rigid plastic or wood -- for training disarms, weapon defenses, and introducing the student to the mechanics and forms of fighting
  • metal trainers -- for training disarms and weapons defenses, training the mechanics and forms of fighting, and training deployment (particular where folder "drones" are concerned)

Your mileage may vary. :)
Thanks Cthulhu. Ray gave me alot of pointers (no pun intended) on making of the blades. He knows his stuff. Actually I'm gearing up to do another batch of daggers, let me know if you want one and I'll set the pick of the litter aside. I also ordered a bundle of raw rattan. We have a bunch of newbys joining our small group, so get yours before i turn it loose to them.

As far as the sparring, yeah,you have to put some trust in your partners when using aluminum trainers, but remember, they use to train drills with LIVE blades. We do also use the padded daggers I made, remember? It allows you to be more "assertive" with less risk of injury while still giving you some rigidity. I'd send one in to Sharp Phil for review, but he'd probably laugh! As long as they work!

Originally posted by Cthulhu
I'm not so worried about an injury to myself, but what my wife may do to my instructors should I get seriously hurt! :D

Why do you think I keep training?! I get such a bad Rap. Just the other day my 3 year old daughter wacked her grandma lola with a broom, and guess who gets in trouble:rolleyes:
I think we all understand that it's best not to get injured in training, lest our spouses worry for us. :)

We do also use the padded daggers I made, remember? It allows you to be more "assertive" with less risk of injury while still giving you some rigidity. I'd send one in to Sharp Phil for review, but he'd probably laugh! As long as they work!

You can send one if you like. I promise I won't laugh.
It's been awhile since we used those padded daggers. Weren't some of them remnants of all those damn padded sticks we broke on each other? :)

If you get that batch of rattan by Friday, I'll definitely pick some out. I got the 'leftovers' from that first batch. And I'm always interested in a dagger.

I'm still mad about that dumb padded stick breaking right in the middle of our match, Cthulu. Glad we stopped using them. Plus, it was getting pretty expensive. Hey Andy, save me some sticks too! I'll see you guys on Sunday.

You're not mad because the stick broke during the match, you're mad because it broke right before you were about to brain me with it.



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