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Thread: Shivworks push dagger

  1. #151
    Due to a series of events, I ended up not carrying a gun for two months, both when on and off of work. For some of that period, I had significantly limited use of one of my arms, through nobody's fault but my own. During this time, I carried a Shivworks Push Dagger (hence SPD) full-time, and wanted to write up some thoughts on the matter. Some of these thoughts are centric to push daggers in general, and several are specifically towards the Shivworks option; I will differentiate accordingly. I do not write authoritatively on this matter, nor speak for Craig Douglas nor Joe Watson on these things.

    Push daggers in general reduce the number of adaptations for power-striking with an edged weapon; their alternate name of "punch daggers" is very self-descriptive. The video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ONH7iHCBVFI describes a wealth of information on the idea in general and the SPD in specific. Being able to fire off a linear or arcing strike sufficient to drive the point into the opponent, with power, is more or less plug-and-play with orthodox boxing. Accessing the push dagger from concealment is much more akin to accessing a pistol from concealment than when accessing a straight blade, particularly as relates to wrist angles and how much vertical travel is required to clear the blade from the sheath. This is particularly emphasized when drawing a push dagger from AIWB into a modified thumb-pectoral-index to setup for bravehearting or launching strikes, with the main adaptation to that being the thumb being folded down rather than flagged upwards.

    Many push daggers have a symmetric design as relates to the handle-shaping; this is seemingly desirable due to equal access and grip characteristics to either hand. However, I don't find that to reflect well when power-striking against a hard-surface for practice, with impact loading onto the lower of the two knuckles choked up against the neck of the blade. More so, to optimize use of such a characteristic, the push dagger would have to be carried closer-to or at center-line; which is more difficult to setup for most without the use of a bridging option such as the PHLster Flex panels. My preference thus leans towards a push dagger with an angled handle, that the blade's orientation more closely align with the run of the forearm bones when grasped between the first and second fingers. Related to that, more minimalist push daggers don't fully fill out the fist, and that allows for movement under impact and for the outer surface of the fingers to bear the brunt of it. There's a deeper dive available on such geometry; but Craig addresses it much more thoroughly in the link above and Joe accomplished such well in the designing of the SPD.

    The SPD has a hand-filling grip, at an angle that readily aligns the tip when held in a convulsive grip with the thumb tucked, that remains static in orientation throughout repeated power-striking. It transfers the force of impact into the palm of the hand as opposed to the outer surface of the fingers. There is minor debate as to whether the blade should be aligned with the second knuckles of the clenched fist (maximum alignment with the arm bones) or with the neck buried as close to the first knuckles as allowed for (blade is parallel-to but not aligned with the arm bones, but the wrist is neutral); but I believe that anywhere at either point or within that range to be acceptable, with a preference to the latter.

    As far as methodology of use in entanglement, the item that jumps out foremost is an adaptation to defeating a wrist-tie. Pummeling directly towards the opponent's thumb remains the same as with any other contact weapon; where practice departs is in pummeling free and then retracting directly to the modified TPI, from which linear strikes can be launched immediately if appropriate and desired. This is as opposed to continuing the pummeling motion upwards until the knife prescribes a circular arc, terminating in a low-line strike into the opponent. As with more traditionally-shaped aluminum trainers (e.g. straight blade trainers, folding knife trainers), this is not appropriate to do with any degree of force or with weight behind it (h/t to Craig for that terminology); however, NOK Training Knives now has a foam replica available for use during such training, available for immediate purchase. Hitting a training partner with a metal training knife is unkind at best and injurious at the worst; but striking them with a metal training push dagger is that and to a much greater degree: please don't do that.

    On the equipment side of things, my observation is that more-pistol-shaped knives benefit from sheaths set up more alike to modern holsters than not. A muzzle\tip pad is more user-preference than not; but a wing- or claw-like feature offers significant dividends. The OEM sheath for the SPD is out-of-the-box compatible with the PHLster Tuckstrut ( https://www.phlsterholsters.com/shop/tuckstrut-retrofit-kit/ ), though different spacers are called for. I use some nylon spacer washers that I have for other applications, but rubber washers as are common in the kydex space work just fine. If desiring a pad, so that the grip is deviated to ride closer to the body, then the use of Velcro Coins (pile-type) and the Dark Star Gear made Flat Pad are pretty accessible options. Coins can be purchased here and at other retailers: https://www.hookandloop.com/products/coins/velcro-brand-velcoin-fasteners ; Flat Pads can be purchased from: https://darkstargear.com/product/flatpad/ .

    As far as Clinch Pick vs SPD, I enjoy and prefer both, and discriminate between the scale of the individual load-out in question. The Clinch Pick plays very well with more comprehensive setups of equipment, given its smaller size and frequent carry angled\inverted in the off-side inguinal crease. The Push Dagger does its best for me when paired with a minimum of other equipment or when a shorter\slimmer shirt is worn, which would be in-conflict with below-belt wear of the Clinch Pick. In example of this are the SPD worn off-side AIWB in complement to a strong-side AIWBed pistol, or the SPD worn strong-side AIWB as primary with a light worn off-side AIWB. As a slighter person with a <30" waist and a comprehensive work requirement for on-body equipment, I'd prefer the Clinch pick during working hours; especially so as to accommodate an additional magazine worn off-side AIWB. I prefer the Push Dagger as a primary when sans pistol, particularly as relates to either rehabilitative periods and date nights.

    Shivworks Push Daggers can be purchased from https://shivworkspg.com/product-category/push-blade/ , https://warriorpoetsupplyco.com/push-dagger-shivworks/ , and https://warriorpoetsupplyco.com/push-dagger-and-push-dagger-trainer-package-deal-shivworks/ (presently a dead link).
    Jules
    Runcible Works

  2. #152
    Trivial Matter Expert Sidheshooter's Avatar
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    That’s a solid post, IMO.

    Tangential: I’d love to see a non-metallic SPD/sheath variant for some primary applications. (Just so you know, Craig)
    "The evidence is all around us—the paroxysms of inchoate, infantile rage suffered by those who have turned fallible politicians into saviors and devils, godlike avatars of Good versus Evil."
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  3. #153
    Member Hizzie's Avatar
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    Finally got to handle one. The handle feels a little big/bulky to me. I saw Craig post something about a smaller handler version and that excites me. Until then I have to pass.

    http://instagram.com/p/B1ggTrRA4lw/
    Quote Originally Posted by caleb View Post
    Oh man, that's right. I forgot that some people feel like they need light SA triggers in DA guns instead of just learning to shoot the gun better. You can get a Redhawk DA trigger pull down to 10 lbs, and if you can't manage that you suck and should probably just practice more.
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  4. #154
    (Argh, I see typos.)


    Sidheshooter,

    Thank you for the kind words!


    Hizzie,

    It's definitely thicker and longer than most competing options that I've handled, and I'm grateful for that; for reference, I wore a 2 to 4 size USGI glove for nomex flyers and green liners. I regard it as a very striking-optimized design: that breadth and girth to the grip keeps it locked in the hand and at an enduring orientation. The symmetric, lower-profile\shorter-handled, and those with thinner grips consistently roll or rock within my grip when hitting things; and some of them bite into my knuckles pretty aggressively when they're doing just that. I put such push knives in the category of being intended more for wear than usage, and frankly they'd turned me off to the idea of running one for quite a while.

    While it's got a greater lateral profile than most knives, as worn; it's still less than almost any gun of substance, and I believe concealable with a wing\claw.

    (...if\when Craig sells a smaller version, I'm buying one. I'm ecstatic with the present one, so why not?)
    Jules
    Runcible Works

  5. #155
    unhyphenated american blues's Avatar
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    Mine tucks reasonably well under a t-shirt without showing. Placement is everything here.

    I'm hoping to get one of Tom's (Dark Star Gear) soonish. But he's playing hard to get with me. (Just kiddin'.)

    I really like the way it fits my hand, the OEM sheath is the biggest negative for me because of fitment / placement...and even so it still works pretty darn well.
    “Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

  6. #156
    Site Supporter
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    Big fan of the Shivworks push dagger. The Dark Star Gear sheath is highly recommended.

  7. #157
    unhyphenated american blues's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom_Jones View Post
    Big fan of the Shivworks push dagger. The Dark Star Gear sheath is highly recommended.
    That fickle fella that runs DSG finally deigned to take my order earlier today.

    Looking forward to the upgrade.
    “Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

  8. #158
    unhyphenated american blues's Avatar
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    Well, my sheath for the PD came in today from Tom, @orionz06, at DSG and it doesn't disappoint.

    I had to change the hardware over for gripping with strong hand, and hit it a couple times with the heat gun to get it just right for my PD, but five minutes later it was good to go.

    Hides well under a t-shirt, riding at about 11...with a J frame at about 1.30

    Releases slicker than cat poop but snaps back in with authority. Get one.

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    Last edited by blues; 10-02-2019 at 06:18 PM.
    “Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

  9. #159
    unhyphenated american blues's Avatar
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    I am curious how many of you that carry the Shivworks PD have it set up for support side draw vs. strong side draw. Clearly there is a rationale for both methods.

    Since I have mine (currently) set up for strong side draw, I was testing support side draw from that position. While not ideal, it works well enough in a pinch though the grip is not as strong as in the standard orientation.

    Still, I find that I can retrieve with my left hand, and get a decent grip with the PD secured between the ring and middle fingers. Allows it to be used to good effect for jabs and thrusts (but with less overall power / stability than standard grip would afford).

    Anyone care to share their thoughts and experience?
    “Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

  10. #160
    Gray Hobbyist Wondering Beard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blues View Post
    I am curious how many of you that carry the Shivworks PD have it set up for support side draw vs. strong side draw. Clearly there is a rationale for both methods.

    Since I have mine (currently) set up for strong side draw, I was testing support side draw from that position. While not ideal, it works well enough in a pinch though the grip is not as strong as in the standard orientation.

    Still, I find that I can retrieve with my left hand, and get a decent grip with the PD secured between the ring and middle fingers. Allows it to be used to good effect for jabs and thrusts (but with less overall power / stability than standard grip would afford).

    Anyone care to share their thoughts and experience?
    I can't carry one here (ianal but my read of Va law makes the push dagger a no-no as far as I'm concerned), but I have experimented a little with it and if I were to carry one it would be weak side AIWB (around 10 o'clock) to. 1) my gun is strong side AIWB, so there's no room and this sort of knife, for me, would be used when things have already gotten to "hands on" and AIWB works best for that sort of scenario, as far as I'm concerned. 2) The basic simplicity of use of that design makes it work very easily for my less skilled weak hand; I could get more out of it strong hand but see 1). 3) I can, though not very smoothly, get it in my strong hand in some sort of strange reverse grip (blade sticking out between the ring and little finger) and get some jabs and stabs in, so it's somewhat ambidextrous from that position.

    All that said, I haven't really worked with it in a good long time so ... I may change my mind on the matter
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