The butterfly knife is mostly known for the hand tricks you can do when propping up its blade, which has been featured in many Hollywood flicks. But since it is still a bladed tool, you can easily hurt yourself trying these fancy hand movements. Thankfully, butterfly knives for training exist for practicing such awesome routines.
What are butterfly knives?
These items are designed basically just like real butterfly knives, or ‘balisong’ as what they are traditionally known as back in its supposed origin country, the Philippines. But, instead of having sharp bladed ends, most of them are dull and are made for non-offensive and practice-only purposes, hence the name.
What are the parts of the butterfly training knife?
Like I said before, this tool built and framed similar to the real balisong, but minus the dangers of a sharp edge. Therefore, it also comes with more or less the same parts. Albeit not entirely forced upon you, learning about these tiny workings can give you a better appreciation to the intricacies of the balisong, be it real or made for training.
Generally, there are only eight basic parts to the traditional balisong, which is the same for the trainer variety. Some higher-end and more expensive models might also have additional features to enhance the knife’s performance, such as a ball bearing system.
Regardless, here are the ones you should be familiar with:
- Bit Handle:This is one of the two handles that makes up a butterfly knife. Specifically, the bit handle is what covers the sharp end of the blade when concealed.
- Safe Handle: The safe handle is the other grip of this tool. In contrast to the bit handle, this one closes on the dull end of the blade when the knife is put away.
- Choil: This part is the known curvature above the kicker, which is intended for easier sharpening of the blade. But, since we are talking about trainer butterfly knives here, this part is either not as pronounced or nonexistent even.
- Kicker: Found just between the choil and the bit handle’s pivot pins, this part is what prevents the sharp edge of the blade from fully reaching the inner end of the handle, thus avoiding any damage.
- Latch: The latch simply serves as a locking mechanism for the two handles. It can also come in different forms based on the manufacturers, ranging from magnets to springs, and etc.
- Spine: This is the thickest part of the blade, usually the back end.
- Swedge: Not to be confused as sharp, a swedge is just angled to appear like it is, which is found at the last end of the blade’s back.
- Tang: The tang is the flat area of the blade’s base, and is where the two handles are affixed via pivot pins.
To know more about the butterfly knife’s anatomy, this article provides a more in-depth and visual discussion on such topic. One more thing. Keep in mind that even though butterfly knife trainers do not have actual sharp edges, treating them as if they do is encouraged, as this will promote your sense of safety when you finally decide to transition to the real ones.
What are the advantages of butterfly knives for training?
Doing butterfly knife tricks can be both challenging and satisfying, which gets more intense as you move to advance techniques. However, you can’t 100% guarantee to not get cut, should you choose a real bladed balisong.
Starting with butterfly knife trainers will not only eliminate such threat, but will also bring other benefits, namely:
- Relatively more accepted by laws
- Can come in different varieties (bottle opener, comb, and etc.)
- Great for practicing newer and expert-level tricks (see video below)
- A plethora of different style and design options
- Some are customizable (i.e. removable blade)
The Best Butterfly knife tricks – Video Guide by Iam Madlife
Who can use butterfly knives?
From a legal standpoint, balisong trainers are generally accepted in states and countries that otherwise prohibit the possession (without permit) of the real ones. But, just to make sure, simply head to your local police department and ask if trainers are allowed in your area.
As for the ideal age group, if you are an abled and responsible adult, then you are likely mature enough to handle this item with care. But, with the case of teenagers, proper assessment should be done first, followed by continued supervision by an adult if permitted.
Best 5 Butterfly Knives For Training
Hopefully, you are now more familiar with these harmless tools. With that said, these are 5 of some of the best trainers to help you practice balisong hand tricks, along with other perks.
This is a great trainer you can easily get into. It comes with a solid pin channel construction with anti-impact, making it quite stable as you manipulate the product. It also features a skeleton-like build, which is intended to lessen weight, but its 181-gram mass seems to disagree.
More importantly, its blade is non-offensive and also has a cutout design, which prevents it from being intentionally sharpened. In terms of the locking mechanism, this model uses a reliable tail latch system to keep the knife open, as well as to keep it secure when closed
- Cheap yet durable, so you won’t need to spend much on the initial purchase, as well as for further maintenance
- This can survive multiple accidental drops, which is great for trying more complicated tricks that are likely to send the knife flying
- Its pivot are optimally screwed, meaning they will rarely need any adjusting
- Has a firm and flexible hold, resulting in less slips
- Has a sleek skeletonized design and black finish, giving it a unique and striking look
- Though it can be a bit stiff during initial use, it will gradually become more flexible the more you use it.
- Quite heavy
Remember how I mentioned before these butterfly knives can come in different varieties? Well, this particular product is a great representation of such versatility. Once you see it, you’ll notice that instead of the usual dulled blade of trainers, this one actually has a comb as the blade.
Yes, you read that right, a comb. This sort of trainer is also sometimes called balicomb, because it handles just like a normal balisong, but you use it to style your hair instead of cutting something. When fully open, this item has a length of 11 inches, and weighs around 170 grams.
- Made of stainless steel, which not only adds a premium sheen to the knife, but it also makes the item sturdy and long lasting.
- Has a long comb blade, so it’s not only for show and gimmicks, but it can actually pass as an actual comb
- Its spring latch is easy to manipulate, resulting in faster opening and closing
- Retails at an accessible price
- Comes with a nylon black bag for easy storage
- Flips smoothly, especially after multiple use
- Bullet Point 2
- Fairly heavy, which can cause some pain when either the comb or the handle hits your hand
- The spring latch is not ideal for regular and quick repetitive manipulation, and may loosen.
This unit has somewhat a similar look to the second entry on this list, but instead of a comb, it has a dull blade. Its measures around 9 inches in length, while it’s mass weighs about 153 grams. In terms of construction, it is built with stainless steel material.
Out of the box, the unit can be quite rigid to swing around, but it is not something a compatible oil can’t solve. Or, you can just keep using it naturally and it’ll loosen up in no time. Although it comes without screws, the handle will not come loose.
- It is decently weighted, which means you can use it for longer periods of time without easily tiring your hands
- Comes with a compact nylon sheath that allows you to store and carry the product around effortlessly and without too much bulk
- Made from a smoke-free environment, ensuring that it is of high quality, and also safe for you to use
- Its stainless steel construction makes the knife last longer and eye catching
- Has a unique butterfly engraving on the base of its unsharpened blade.
- Its spring latch can be locked easily
- Comes without screws, so you can’t adjust it freely
Out of all the entries in this list, this is by far the cheapest and the lightest. However, its accessible price tag does not mean it is completely mediocre. Although its simplistic finish is not much of a standout, when it comes to functionality and durability, this product still scores decently well.
It sports a holed design, from handle to the blade, which not only contributes to the item’s lightness, but it also makes sharpening the dull blade impractical. For actual measurements, the knife has a total length of 8.86 inches: 3.74 from the blade, and 5.11 from the handle.
- It has a portable and compact build, which allows it to fit in just about any average-sized pocket or bag compartment
- Lightweight compared to most, giving you seamless manipulation of the unit without concern of sudden hand strain
- Simple and straightforward operation, making it ideal for beginners and for learning basic balisong tricks
- Quickly loosens after several quick motions and flip maneuvers, but in a positive way
- The cheapest item on this list
- Bland finish, which makes the unit look cheap and boring
- Its blade to handle ratio is not well-balanced, making it unsuitable for advanced hand techniques
- Does not come with its own protective pouch
5. ZRAMO Knife Beginner Rainbow Training Colorful Knife Tool 4 Practice Blade Allows Safe Practice of Personal-defense Skills
If there is one butterfly knife trainer on this light that will catch the most attention, this is probably it. With the rainbow hue finish of its blade and handle, you can’t help but be mesmerized. However, you might have to re-tighten its screws a couple of times each month, depending on your frequency of usage.
Underneath its interesting color scheme, this model is actually made of high quality stainless steel. So, it is not just eye-catching, but it is also durable and long lasting. For its actual size, this model has dimensions of 6.2 x 2.2 x 0.8 inches.
- Its multi-hued surface makes for a very striking look, one that will surely catch not only your interest but that of others as well
- The screws manages to stay in place even with rough handling, although the hinges may need some occasional oiling.
- The blade is designed similar to what you’ll usually get from an actual balisong, which will give you a nice perspective as to how a real butterfly knife feels.
- • Needs multiple screw re-tightening every month.
All in all, each item listed here performs well to their own strengths. However, despite their own unique take on what an ideal butterfly training knife should be, there still one product that managed to stand out from the rest. That product is the butterfly knife trainer practice comb no offensive blade black, by Moon Boat.
Despite its fairly heavy weight, the impressive performance it gives, as well as the quality of its design and overall construction, more than outweighs its slight added bulk, no pun intended. And although it’s not as cheap as the Icetek butterfly knife, it does have features that are far superior. Fortunately, it’s also not as expensive as the Yakool butterfly knife trainer, and is only around the medium price range.
To put it simply, our winner product may just be the best among the butterfly knives we have featured in this article. It is safe to use, ideal for beginner to expert level, and can survive multiple drops, allowing you to practice as often as you want.