I spoke to a cop not long ago about “tactical folders”…
…And how often he sees them when he searches somebody, or just when he talks to people.
Cops have to be very aware of who’s armed, after all, and every time they interact with somebody on the street, there’s always the chance things could turn violent – usually very quickly!
I know if I wasn’t sure who might take a swipe at me, I’d always want to know if they had a blade in their pockets.
“Everybody’s got a knife, Jeff,” he told me.
If you think about it, that makes perfect sense.
A tactical folding knife is easy to get, and legal just about everywhere (at least in the United States).
It’s really powerful, but it doesn’t cost much.
It’s also pretty small and pretty light (even if you have one of those great big honking “pocket sword” models I see some folks carrying), so it’s easy to carry and conceal.
And look, I’m not trying to call anybody out, and I don’t want to make anybody angry…
…but there are so many people carrying these knives that I keep seeing them make the same mistakes.
That’s why I hope you won’t get mad when I tell you about…
3 Tactical Knife Mistakes – That Most People Don’t Think About!
Now, I get that everybody’s different, and there’s more than one way to do things.
But this is what I see as the biggest mistakes people make with their tactical knives, okay?
The 3 biggest ones, as I see them, are…
1. Don’t Carry It Where People Can See It!
Lots of people carry their tactical folder in their front pocket.
I mean, that’s what these knives were designed for.
The problem is, everybody can see your knife clipped there.
I play a game when I’m out in public: I look to see who’s carrying a knife, and try to identify what knife it is.
Not only does carrying your knife out in the open tell a mugger or other criminal where your knife is (so he can stop you from getting to it)…
…but if you get into an argument with some jerk on the street, he could easily lie about your knife, and it would be your word against his:
“Honest, officer – he threatened me with a knife! He’s got it right in his pocket!”
I hate to say it, but it’s better to carry your knife in your waistband, under your shirt.
You’ll have to “clear your cover garment” to get to it, but the knife will be completely concealed, which is a smarter and more “tactical” choice.
2. Don’t Switch The Clip On A 2nd Blade…
This is a little more technical, but follow me here a minute.
A lot of people like to carry two knives.
That way, if they can’t get to one knife (because their arm is injured on that side, or they’re lying on top of the knife while fighting on the ground), they can draw the other.
Makes sense, right?
Well, if you do this, don’t switch the clip on your “left hand knife” to match your left side (or vice versa).
The reason is that if you have to draw your knife under stress – you know, while somebody is beating on you or trying to stab you – you only have to know TWO DRAWS.
There’s the right-hand draw on either side, and then there’s the way you position your left hand for the draw on either side.
If you switch the clip, though, so that the right hand and the left hand clips are mirror images of each other, you’ve got to learn FOUR draws:
- Right hand, right knife
- Right hand, left knife
- Left hand, left knife
- Left hand, right knife
As the lady in the meme says, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”
Learn to draw your knife with either hand using the same clip orientation, and you’ll only ever have to practice two styles of draw, no matter how far you reach across your body to do it.
3. Don’t Use It For Utility
This last one probably sounds obvious, but I’m amazed at how many people make this mistake.
If you’re going to use your knife for self-defense, it’s got to be as sharp as possible to do the job.
A dull knife might as well be a spoon, in a real-life fight.
But what do you think your knife edge is going to be like if you’ve spent the last two months opening cardboard boxes without sharpening it?
It’s much better to carry a separate utility knife, like Swiss Army Knife or other small pocketknife.
A great EDC “utility knife” choice that is ALSO “tactical” is this one from FightFast, which can be used as a fire-starting tool, too:
(It even comes with a free fire-starting guide.)
I know – I just got done saying not to use your tactical knife for utility… but this is a utility knife that you COULD use for an emergency “tactical” situation if you absolutely needed to.
Ultimately, the knife you choose to carry (and the EXTRA knives you choose to carry) are your call, you know?
No matter what you carry, though, make sure you don’t make the 3 mistakes I just described.
You don’t want to be hassled just for carrying a legal knife for self-defense… you want to be able to get to it when you need it… and you definitely want it to cut well if you do have to deploy it.