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Thread: "Knives don't work well and you will go to prison no matter what!"

  1. #21
    careful what you wish for blues's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuanoLoco View Post
    Knife guys spend a lot of time working on cutting their opponents in places that matter, and, given that getting cut in return is an inevitability, trying to only take cuts in areas that are less critical to sustaining life and staying in the fight.
    I don't think there was any contradiction presented in my original post. I am speaking of my experience, and my usage.

    That said, I'm pretty familiar with anatomy and the targets of opportunity / vulnerability.
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  2. #22
    FNFSFFW RevolverRob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TCFD273 View Post
    That knives are extremely effective at delivering lethal force.

    That knives are more effective than handguns at psychological stops.


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    I'm not sure we disagree, actually. I think we're simply talking past each other.

    Psychological stops are going to vary, period. I want to be clear, I'm merely pointing out that there seems like there might be an increased psychological stoppage factor with a knife. That's a lot of qualifiers on purpose. Not that there actually is and I wouldn't want to count on it, period.

    As for lethal force, knives are as effective as anything else, when targeted properly. More importantly, by their nature of being contact weapons, they are typically used to deliver more hitsonto an opponent quickly, than handguns are. We could debate efficacy back and forth for quite a while, I'm sure. But at the end of the day usage of any weapon to deliver lethal force is a matter of targeting and force application. I argue knives are extremely effective, because they allow for rapid application of lethal damage with high degrees of accuracy when used inside of their area of effect. Knives are like anything else, tools which have a specific set of applications they excel at and ones which they aren't so good at. Delivering lethal force from 5 yards away with a knife is a whole lot harder than doing so with a handgun or long arm.
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  3. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by RevolverRob View Post
    . Shivworks teaches tie ups and controls, that while not necessarily specifically constructed to aid in targeting vital areas, definitely allow those areas to be more reliably targeted.


    All of us in SW group teach specific targeting to gain the most effective outcome.

    The idea that "using a knife is a definite jail sentence" has not been backed up with a single shred of documented evidence. As a matter of fact, the opposite has been proven to be true. There is not one single instance that anyone has been able to show where an otherwise justifiable self-defense situation has become a criminal matter solely due to the defendant using a knife. Not a single one. Ever, in the US in the modern era. Actually, what we have found is a metric ton of folks using a knife, even in less than friendly to self-defense areas (like Seattle), never had any legal consequences at all.

    And the concept that using a knife even leads to the person plea bargaining because the prosecutor wants to go to trial solely due to a knife being used? Again, nothing more than "he said, she said".

    With the information age, one would hope that we have moved past essentially old wives tales being taken as gospel. It is not hard to prove or disprove shit like this. Unless you maybe have an agenda that is.
    Last edited by Cecil Burch; 01-21-2019 at 03:42 PM.
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  4. #24
    Regarding the lethality of knives...

    I carry a knife to create space so I can transition to my pistol. If I cant get space to get to my pistol then im likely locked up in some sort of grapple/clinch situation in which case I see a knife being very useful. I don't need to it to kill the guy (but if it does then so be it) I just need it to create me an opening.

    It baffles me how many people out there though who thinks trying to use a blade defensively is a death sentence for the good guy using the knife. I see this a lot on other forums.

  5. #25
    LE Forum Moderator BehindBlueI's's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Mutt View Post
    Damn my old mind...was it not here that someone like @BBI told of his talks with a serious trial attorney who told him he'd never seen a defensive knife use get spun into a prosecution? Was it a podcast? Fuck, it was great info, too.
    Yeah, that was me. I was actually rather surprised by the information. I had long assumed knives would be looked at more harshly, and historically had been. The only documented case of Doc Holiday having to flee a lynch mob was a stabbing. Switchblades were banned largely due to their association with "gangsters", etc. Additionally, crime scene photos are often much more horrific in terms of gore then shootings, which might impact the jury. However when I ran it by our screening prosecutor, who has decades of murder trial experience, he said he had not seen that in court or in screening for potential prosecution. I asked several other deputy prosecutors about it, and about if knife use affected the harshness of sentencing. I asked the lead and assisting prosecutor on one of my cases that went to jury trial where the bad guy had slashed a carjacking victim's neck several times. All said they had never seen the fact it was a knife matter.

    As far as effectiveness, per my stats it's been slightly less effective in stopping single attackers then handguns have been and pretty much same-same on multiple attackers (and for the same reasons, if they all stay and fight you're likely to lose, if you hurt/kill the others and they flee you're almost certain to win but with the occasional tie where you get badly hurt as well). Now that is, of course, a comparison of the largely untrained population with a wide variety of cutting instruments, not all of which were knives. As such, the stats are perhaps not of much use to someone who's actually trained and properly equipped. I am a rank neophyte at best in terms of knife fighting, with my only training being what @SouthNarc covered in ECQC, which was more counter-knife. As such, I've little else to offer on that front.
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    Quote Originally Posted by UNM1136 View Post
    Maybe with talented students I would lube up with baby oil and then go at it.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by RevolverRob View Post
    With all respect, that does not appear to be the case, at all. But I think you're conflating a fight stoppage due to physiological shutdown of an attacker and physiological stoppage, period. If you stab someone 57 times and they die 20 minutes later, the knife was an effective physiological stopper in the hands of the stabber, i.e. the tool used stopped, literally, the physiological functions of the stabbee.

    It's the 20 minutes between the fight starting and physiological shutdown that makes the difference to the individuals in the fight. We've seen many instances of knife and handgun usage where the fight did not end due to a physiological stop. The difference that might make the handgun more effective is distance. A handgun can be and often is employed at a greater distance that results in one or more parties to the fight fleeing rather quickly from the scene. Where as a "knife fight" is an extreme close quarters scenario that may not offer a rapid escape for either party and thus may continue for an extended period of time.

    So what's the take home? If you carry a knife for defensive usage, working on your delivery, control, and escape system is really the most important part. Way too many "knife systems" focus on repeatedly stabbing and re-engaging your opponent, far fewer focus on control and escape of a clinched up scenario. The only two "knife systems" I know that actively integrate and focus on control and escapre are the Shivworks Paradigm and components of the Libre Fighting System.
    A handgun is more effective due to the ability to reliably penetrate the CNS. Knives can do it, but they need to be decently large and heavy, more swordlike, which is a different discussion.

  7. #27
    Regarding the anecdotes that suggest knives are not good physiological stoppers (i.e. guy stabbed 30 times and still fighting back), could a big part of that be attributed to poor anatomical targeting by mostly untrained users? In the majority of knife encounter footage that I've seen or stories I've heard about, people tend to repeatedly stab to the lower abdomen/gut area. I'm not a medical professional, but there don't seem to be good targets in that area that would lead to a fast physiological stop with a 3-4" blade.

    If the knife wielder instead targeted major arteries and/or CNS rather than repeatedly stabbing their adversary in the gut, I think the knife would be a much more effective weapon than some detractors believe. I get that hitting those targets is easier said than done, but that's why we train, right? Just like stopping someone with a gun, impact weapon, or empty hand strike, you have to hit them in the right places. I'd be curious if any medical experts here can weigh in on the ideal targets for an EDC blade.

  8. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by GuanoLoco View Post
    Knife guys spend a lot of time working on cutting their opponents in places that matter, and, given that getting cut in return is an inevitability, trying to only take cuts in areas that are less critical to sustaining life and staying in the fight.

    Obv there are levels to what is a “knife guy”, but for most “knife guys” there seems to be 5 that buying a clinch pik and calling it a day. To be fair, the more dedicated are probably putting in the work, but most don’t seem to be going that far.

    Props for being the first to mention “you are going to get cut” Not if your attacker’s doesn’t have a knife and you are using yours cause he has you mounted, (or did), is beating the crap out of you, and is trying to disarm you.

  9. #29
    FNFSFFW RevolverRob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enel View Post
    A handgun is more effective due to the ability to reliably penetrate the CNS. Knives can do it, but they need to be decently large and heavy, more swordlike, which is a different discussion.
    I want to be clear I'm not suggesting that small knives are the best stoppers on the planet, they are not. What you've described above though is a targeting problem. Accuracy matters with knife and fist strikes as much as it does with a handgun. I've dissected enough humans and animals with a 1" scalpel to tell you it isn't hard to reach critical organs/regions with a stabbing motion reliably. I wouldn't want to fight someone off using a small knife if avoidable or with a handgun for that matter (a platoon of Marines and a bunch of high explosives would be better). But you can easily drive a short blade into critical areas, particularly if you can get to the back of your opponent.

    But, if you can't target those areas due to circumstances, you'll have plenty of problems. The same is true, regardless of the weapon you are employing. Which brings us back to problem solving the situation. A knife, a gun, a pound of high explosives, they're all tools for solving a problem. If you don't know how to analyze the situation, determine the problem, pick the appropriate solution, and adjust to a changing scenario, you might as well throw rocks at your opponent, it'll probably be as effective.

    Which returns us back to the OP. Legal issues aside, the knives "don't work well" is the mantra of someone who hasn't learned to adequately apply the knife. In the right circumstance knives work extremely well. To be a smartass about it we can take the absoluteness of the quote to a logical absurdity, if you were skinning a deer would you rather have a knife or a handgun? Which one would work better?

    I guess knives do work well in some circumstances, huh?

    And absolutely, you can argue that some folks over-estimate the knife and its efficacy. Stabbing someone in the pinky with your 18" double-edged Cold Steel dildo isn't like to be any more effective than shooting them in the pinky with a 12-gauge slug.
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  10. #30
    Site Supporter TCFD273's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by js475 View Post
    I'd be curious if any medical experts here can weigh in on the ideal targets for an EDC blade.
    I wouldn’t call myself an expert...but I’ve done and seen a few things so here goes...

    Carotid artery
    Brachial artery
    Femoral artery
    Popliteal artery

    Heart

    Eyes

    CNS

    Good luck hitting those in an entangled fight.

    I treated a fellow earlier on in my career who took a butcher knife to the chest into the lung, and a slash across the face that went from his left eye, cut his nose in half, and cut both lips open. He still managed to murder his girlfriend after all that.


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