How's your knife...

How's your knife...

This is a discussion on How's your knife... within the Defensive Knives & Other Weapons forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; recieved this a few days ago, sage advice from someone that knows.... Ten Points About The Fighting Knife 1). The knife is always with you, ...

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  1. #1
    VIP Member Array Sheldon J's Avatar
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    Lightbulb How's your knife...

    recieved this a few days ago, sage advice from someone that knows....

    Ten Points About The Fighting Knife

    1). The knife is always with you, even in places where the gun cannot go.

    2). It becomes the first line of weaponry when the pistol is not available by choice, policy, inaccessibility or loss.

    3). If things have gotten bad enough to need the knife, the use of the knife should be aggressive, brutal and terminal, and not "defensive".

    4). There is a place for using a knife against the unarmed adversary if that adversary is younger, stronger or faster than you are...or more numerous.

    5). There is a place for keeping them away with your edge, but there is also a place for closing and stabbing.

    6). A knife worthy of combat carry should facilitate stabbing and be simple and instictive to use.

    7). The more complicated and complex a knife is, and the more elaborate its system of use, the less desirable it is.

    8). Conversely, the simpler the knife and the system and more gross motor dependant it is, the better it will do in a fight.

    9). A fixed blade is more desirable than a folder, but a folder may be required in some applications. If a folder is used, the lock should be robust and not technically clever.

    10). Learn to be violent with your knife



    Ten Attributes To Select Your Fighting Knife

    1). Sharp as hell and pointy as [Edited], you can't stab anyone or cut anyone with a dull round nosed blade. If this sounds vulgar, it is. There is nothing dainty about ramming a 3" piece of steel into a man's thrioat and tiwsting it as he fights to get it out.

    2). Point in line with the handle. Upswept blades may be the acme of the knifemaker artist, but they suck eggs for ramming through a clavicle.

    3). Long enough...but not too long. We hear that about lots of things.

    4). Rough handle. Either G-10 or rough designed zytel handles. When you stab another man, his juices will get all over your blade and hand.

    5). Solid lock. Liner locks suck. I don't care how graceful or cool they are...they suck. Axis lock as seen with benchmade or with Cold Steel is the way to go, or with an old style lockback design.

    6). Solid opening method. This being 2009, and the "Wave" concept being as old as the pyramids now....a combat blade should have a wave feature if it is a folder.

    7). Good steel. That does NOT mean stainless. I don't give an airborne fornication about stains on my knife...I WANT IT SHARP!

    8). Again, if a folder, it needs a movable clip so operators may carry it as desired. The more I work on this Killing-focused system, the more I am liking reverse grip - edge in. That means for a righty, you carry point up- blade forward.

    9). It must be cost-effective. Notice I did not say CHEAP. Cost-effective means that if I decide to ditch it, I will not be heart broken to lose my special one-of-a-kind....nor will that special one-of-a-kind be tied to me.

    10). There should be a boatload of them out there in society....like Glocks. Thus you cannot be identified or tied to the gear you use.

    If some of this stuff sounds like it comes from the world of the criminal rather than the world of the law abiding good guy, it does. One does not go to a clean shaven altar boy to learn to cut a throat.


    Ten Points About Using The Knife In A Fight

    1). A fighting is knife is fueled by rage and ferocity, not by cleverness and showmanship. I recall seeing CWS go ape (or was it AMOK) on a knife expert we brought in one year. The best the very clever and artistic knife expert could do was match CWS stab for stab. But that was after CWS had stabbed him three or four times.

    2). Learn to stab....HARD

    3). Learn to hold the knife in a way that you will not lose it when you STAB HARD.

    4). Since few of us go about with a 10" bowie, learn your targets. You may not be able to behead an attacker, but you can in fact rip out his jugular even with a 2" box cutter.

    5). Footwork gets you off the line of the attack, but also gets you close enough to STAB HIM HARD.

    6). The instant you pull steel your intent should be to stick it in his neck and rip it out a different way, and not to spar, fend, or ask him to stay back.

    7). The grip area of your knife MUST be rough enough to stay in your hand if your hand is covered with blood (hopefully not yours).

    8). The point must be in line with your stab. A Cold Steel Scimitar or a Spyderco Chinook do not have this, but a Cold Steel AK-47 and a Spyderco Endura do.

    9). To train it, each knife must have an identical trainer (dulled knife) and a wooden/rubberized trainer (like Nok's). The identical trainer is used for technical and access drills. The wooden type trainer is used for attacking the heavy bag or the stabbing post.

    10). Contrary to the advice of others, use your fighting knife for everything. From opening letters to cutting cheese or tomatoes. Handle your knife daily, keep it sharp, keep it handy. make accessing it as natural as scratching your butt.
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    Last edited by Captain Crunch; July 6th, 2009 at 01:09 AM. Reason: Language workaround.
    "The sword dose not cause the murder, and the maker of the sword dose not bear sin" Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac 11th century


  2. #2
    Ex Member Array United93's Avatar
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    Interesting. There are a few things I disagree with.

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    Senior Member Array unloved's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by United93 View Post
    Interesting. There are a few things I disagree with.
    Yeah, same here.

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    Senior Member Array redbird's Avatar
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    I recieve Gabe's newsletter and I have never been bored with it. He is well informed and a great SD instructor.

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    VIP Member Array KenpoTex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by United93 View Post
    Interesting. There are a few things I disagree with.
    Quote Originally Posted by unloved View Post
    Yeah, same here.
    for example? (in the interests of perpetuating the discussion)
    "Being a predator isn't always comfortable but the only other option is to be prey. That is not an acceptable option." ~Phil Messina

    If you carry in Condition 3, you have two empty chambers. One in the weapon...the other between your ears.

    Matt K.

  6. #6
    Ex Member Array United93's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoTex View Post
    for example? (in the interests of perpetuating the discussion)
    For one thing, the author appears to infer that the neck is the only good target for a knife attack (or counter-attack). "The instant you pull steel your intent should be to stick it in his neck". Such functional fixedness will get you in trouble. There are many other targets, and they should be attacked based on opportunity. The "I could cut his triceps but I won't because the only way to end the fight is to stab him in the neck and rip out his jugular" mentality is pure fubar.

    Also, he discounts the liner lock without giving any good reasons. Some liner locks, perhaps such as the Auto-Lawks by CRKT, overcome the "twist in the hand and accidentally release the lock" problem.

    In addition, he mentions a "Killing-focused system". My wannabe detector is beeping like mad. If you ever are in court, possibly charged with murder, for defending yourself with a knife, I think we can all agree that the last thing you want to have surface is that you have been trained in a "Killing-focused system". Finally (until I think of more points I disagree with), the use of vulgar language in such an article is really out of place, and reflects poorly on the author and his credibility (rightly or wrongly).

    Ah, yes. Another thing. "Since few of us go about with a 10" bowie, learn your targets." Either he has no idea what he is talking about, or he is making a convincing imitation of such a person. Even with a large blade, you had better know your targets (and they're not just the throat, either).

    One more. He does not care about stains on his knife. Anyone with good sense knows that caring for your gear is essential, especially when it comes to survival tools. Stains lead to rust, which is obviously undesireable.

    And yet another. "The knife is always with you..." No, it's not. There are many places, and several states, that forbid the carrying of most knives concealed (and since he speaks of a pocket clip, I assume he means the "fighting knife" to be concealed).
    Last edited by United93; July 6th, 2009 at 03:57 PM. Reason: inexusable spelling error

  7. #7
    Senior Member Array unloved's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoTex View Post
    for example? (in the interests of perpetuating the discussion)
    Sure. I really enjoy these discussions.
    I've highlighted my comments in bold.


    Ten Points About The Fighting Knife

    1). The knife is always with you, even in places where the gun cannot go.

    In Pa., there is no where that I can carry a knife but not a gun. If I can't carry a gun, I can't carry a knife either.

    2). It becomes the first line of weaponry when the pistol is not available by choice, policy, inaccessibility or loss.

    3). If things have gotten bad enough to need the knife, the use of the knife should be aggressive, brutal and terminal, and not "defensive".

    4). There is a place for using a knife against the unarmed adversary if that adversary is younger, stronger or faster than you are...or more numerous.

    5). There is a place for keeping them away with your edge, but there is also a place for closing and stabbing.

    6). A knife worthy of combat carry should facilitate stabbing and be simple and instictive to use.

    The method I train in does not require a point at all. A Spyderco Rescue, for example, would be just as effective as the Endura, Native, or Street Beat that are my EDC blades. I'd argue that stabbing isn't at all "instinctive."

    7). The more complicated and complex a knife is, and the more elaborate its system of use, the less desirable it is.

    8). Conversely, the simpler the knife and the system and more gross motor dependant it is, the better it will do in a fight.

    9). A fixed blade is more desirable than a folder, but a folder may be required in some applications. If a folder is used, the lock should be robust and not technically clever.

    10). Learn to be violent with your knife



    Ten Attributes To Select Your Fighting Knife

    1). Sharp as hell and pointy as [Edited], you can't stab anyone or cut anyone with a dull round nosed blade. If this sounds vulgar, it is. There is nothing dainty about ramming a 3" piece of steel into a man's thrioat and tiwsting it as he fights to get it out.

    2). Point in line with the handle. Upswept blades may be the acme of the knifemaker artist, but they suck eggs for ramming through a clavicle.

    3). Long enough...but not too long. We hear that about lots of things.

    4). Rough handle. Either G-10 or rough designed zytel handles. When you stab another man, his juices will get all over your blade and hand.

    5). Solid lock. Liner locks suck. I don't care how graceful or cool they are...they suck. Axis lock as seen with benchmade or with Cold Steel is the way to go, or with an old style lockback design.

    I'm not a huge fan, but I don't see a real problem with liner locks.

    6). Solid opening method. This being 2009, and the "Wave" concept being as old as the pyramids now....a combat blade should have a wave feature if it is a folder.

    IMO the Wave has severely limited utility in a SD situation.

    7). Good steel. That does NOT mean stainless. I don't give an airborne fornication about stains on my knife...I WANT IT SHARP!

    There are more than a few stainless steels that are perfectly suitable for a SD knife.

    8). Again, if a folder, it needs a movable clip so operators may carry it as desired. The more I work on this Killing-focused system, the more I am liking reverse grip - edge in. That means for a righty, you carry point up- blade forward.

    IMO (I know it's a contentious point) tip down is the way to go. Reverse grip-edge in seems overly specialized to me.

    9). It must be cost-effective. Notice I did not say CHEAP. Cost-effective means that if I decide to ditch it, I will not be heart broken to lose my special one-of-a-kind....nor will that special one-of-a-kind be tied to me.

    10). There should be a boatload of them out there in society....like Glocks. Thus you cannot be identified or tied to the gear you use.

    If some of this stuff sounds like it comes from the world of the criminal rather than the world of the law abiding good guy, it does. One does not go to a clean shaven altar boy to learn to cut a throat.

    I just don't like the overall tone of this one.

    Ten Points About Using The Knife In A Fight

    1). A fighting is knife is fueled by rage and ferocity, not by cleverness and showmanship. I recall seeing CWS go ape (or was it AMOK) on a knife expert we brought in one year. The best the very clever and artistic knife expert could do was match CWS stab for stab. But that was after CWS had stabbed him three or four times.

    2). Learn to stab....HARD

    Stabbing requires rather precise targeting to be effective. I'm unconvinced that stabbing with the typical(blade around 3") defensive folder is the best option.

    3). Learn to hold the knife in a way that you will not lose it when you STAB HARD.

    4). Since few of us go about with a 10" bowie, learn your targets. You may not be able to behead an attacker, but you can in fact rip out his jugular even with a 2" box cutter.

    See my comment on 2) above.

    5). Footwork gets you off the line of the attack, but also gets you close enough to STAB HIM HARD.

    6). The instant you pull steel your intent should be to stick it in his neck and rip it out a different way, and not to spar, fend, or ask him to stay back.

    IMO effective cutting is better than stabbing. Especially for those(like myself) that can't devote an immense amount of time to training.

    7). The grip area of your knife MUST be rough enough to stay in your hand if your hand is covered with blood (hopefully not yours).

    8). The point must be in line with your stab. A Cold Steel Scimitar or a Spyderco Chinook do not have this, but a Cold Steel AK-47 and a Spyderco Endura do.

    9). To train it, each knife must have an identical trainer (dulled knife) and a wooden/rubberized trainer (like Nok's). The identical trainer is used for technical and access drills. The wooden type trainer is used for attacking the heavy bag or the stabbing post.

    Identical trainers (drones) are not available for most knives. As I mentioned in another thread, I think a drone that approximates your SD knife is acceptable.

    10). Contrary to the advice of others, use your fighting knife for everything. From opening letters to cutting cheese or tomatoes. Handle your knife daily, keep it sharp, keep it handy. make accessing it as natural as scratching your butt.

    Familiarity can be gained through solo practice with a drone. I prefer not to use my SD knives for everyday chores. That way, I don't have to sharpen them all the time.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array psychophipps's Avatar
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    Have to agree with everything above by unloved. I'll just add that a curved blade doesn't = can't possibly stab EVAR. Heck, plenty of folks have been stabbed and killed by katana, tanto, and wakizashi over the course of their use.
    And I have about zero interest in trying to stab, or ram for that matter, through a clavicle with a knife, thanks.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Array Knuckledrager's Avatar
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    10). There should be a boatload of them out there in society....like Glocks. Thus you cannot be identified or tied to the gear you use.

    If some of this stuff sounds like it comes from the world of the criminal rather than the world of the law abiding good guy, it does. One does not go to a clean shaven altar boy to learn to cut a throat.

    I don't like the tone of that either. I does sound like the thought process of one who has used deadly force outside of the lines or at least thinks that they have. I am in NO WAY suggesting that Mr Suarez has done that! I'm just saying that it sounds like bad advice to anyone who uses a blade to apply deadly force to an attacker. One has to wonder where Mr Suarez learned this lesson. I have an opinion on that. Google search his name along with "SMPD" for the published news articles.
    "The liberty of the individual is no gift of civilization. It was greatest before there was any civilization." Sigmund Freud

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    Senior Member Array psychophipps's Avatar
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    One thing to keep in mind is that Mr. Suarez, to put things bluntly, has been teaching people to kill other people in the fastest, most brutal manner possible (which strongly relates to the former more often than not) for a while now. While he has some good points above and I'm quite sure is an excellent source of tactical instruction, he also has a mindset demonstrated above that doesn't relate well to the realities of civilian self-defense in the US and the legal ramifications of the same.

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    Ex Member Array United93's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psychophipps View Post
    One thing to keep in mind is that Mr. Suarez, to put things bluntly, has been teaching people to kill other people in the fastest, most brutal manner possible (which strongly relates to the former more often than not) for a while now. While he has some good points above and I'm quite sure is an excellent source of tactical instruction, he also has a mindset demonstrated above that doesn't relate well to the realities of civilian self-defense in the US and the legal ramifications of the same.

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    VIP Member Array raevan's Avatar
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    What people are missing here is that if you need to use the knife in self defence, then things have really gone bad. You should be willing to kill your attacker as fast as possible to stop the attack. If you are not willing to kill your attacker, you should not be carrying a knife for defence. If you stop and worry about being arrested, you won't be because you will be dead. You have to be willing to use deadly force or shouldn't even be carrying a knife or gun for protection. I carry knives for daily use, if I am forced to use it in defence I will, but that is not the reason it is carried.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Array psychophipps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by raevan View Post
    What people are missing here is that if you need to use the knife in self defense, then things have really gone bad. You should be willing to kill your attacker as fast as possible to stop the attack. If you are not willing to kill your attacker, you should not be carrying a knife for defense. If you stop and worry about being arrested, you won't be because you will be dead. You have to be willing to use deadly force or shouldn't even be carrying a knife or gun for protection. I carry knives for daily use, if I am forced to use it in defense I will, but that is not the reason it is carried.
    I wasn't discussing this at all, actually. I'd like to think that "willing to do the deed" would be already be covered by the people reading these posts or at least giving the people not willing to do the deed a bit of pause to think about how serious they are about defending themselves, especially with bladed weapons that will fling blood all over themselves while the other guy is begging for his Mommy as he bleeds out.
    I was discussing the points #9 and #10 in the "selection of your blade" section. The attitude shown here will serve criminals and various high-speed/low-drag covert operators much better than a civilian who had to use a blade in a self defense situation. In fact, if you were to flub even a little bit and this attitude were to come out in court, you'd basically be hosed. Knowingly choosing a weapon because it's harder to trace doesn't bode well with the investigators or the DA who might be prosecuting you.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Array psychophipps's Avatar
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    Just had chance to check out the two blades mentioned in #8 of "Ten points on Using a Knife in a Fight" and I fail to see where stabbing (hard even) would be impossible (or even difficult) to accomplish with these blades. Yes, they have a bit of a curve but you're (hopefully) stabbing soft areas leading to major blood-bearing organs, blood vessels, or airways and not slabs like the skull, back of the pelvis, or scapula even if you do have a straight line from tip to grip on your knife.

    Any clue why these two were specifically mentioned in regards to being the suck?

  15. #15
    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psychophipps View Post
    Any clue why these two were specifically mentioned in regards to being the suck?
    Okay, not uncommonly on the Ballistics forum, we note that penetration is the "fight-stopper" measure for HG rounds. Strangely, it is discounted with knives.

    The Chinook and Scimitar have upswept points, that in a jab, are already predisposed to curve off the line of penetration, and will more easily de deflected by bone, keyrings, heavy stainless snaps on a jacket, etc..

    We've hashed out the point-driven/slashing philosophies before, I doubt there will be any conversions. If you prefer edge-methods, the Chinook and Scimitar are very well suited; if you prefer point-driven, as noted, the Endura or Cold Steel's knock-off are spot-on.

    I disagree with SI on more than a few things, largely because it seems to have become less innovative and more dogmatic of late. However. His philosophy is the same as mine: it doesn't matter if I have to use zip-guns and pipe-bombs, I. Will. Go. Home.

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