Posts Tagged ‘Dagger’

Far East Meets Middle East Meets Left Field…

Monday, October 5th, 2009

Today I have a set of yet more crossover blades. Like most of the others, these knives feature qualities from different cultures, melded together to form beautiful harmoniously wicked looking blades. I refer to the work of Wally Hayes, of Hayes Knives. I suppose I ought to stop flappin’ mah trap, and show you a few pics:

Damascus Dagger - Broad Spear Point

Damascus Dagger - Broad Spear Point

Now this is what I am talking about. The astute among you may have noticed that this little dagger bears traits from three separate cultures. OK, so let’s play a little sleuthing game. Who wants to take a stab at guessing which ones?… Don’t worry, I’ll wait…

*whistling*…

*taps hooves*…

*facepalm*

OOOOK, that’s about enough of the waiting thing.

I’m sure many of you guessed Asia, as the first culture, and you would be correct. The tsuka, guard and habaki  are all Asian in origin. However the other two flavors are a little harder… Actually that’s not entirely true. This here dagger has a damascus blade. That one should be easy… Yeah. really…. Oh, come on… Ok, ok. The damascus betrays the  Middle Eastern genes in this blade. Right? From Damascus…? Got it?  Good. 🙂

Now, last but not least, the shape of the blade itself is neither traditionally Japanese, nor Middle Eastern. Both far and middle eastern blades generally feature curved blades. This blade, carries European lines. And there is our trilogy of genes. And a beautiful child it is too…

If you got all three, you may proceed to pat yourself on the back. Yes, you may sprain your arm in order to do so if necessary. I’ll allow it. Just this once. Feel the burn? Good. Here’s another example:

Damascus Dagger - Fine Spear Point

Damascus Dagger - Fine Spear Point

How about we up the ante. Eh? Try and be a little more specific? What do you think…? This one should be easy, it’s pretty much almost the same as the other… Ok, well here’s my take…

The Tsuka and Guard are almost definitely Asian. Japanese, to be precise. No habaki, like the other one, but these are all hybrid knives, so I’m gonna let that slide. The blade is, again, Damascus, can’t really be precise about it’s origin without a metallurgical analysis, so i’ll leave it at that. The blade shape on the other hand, almost definitely European. I’d guess late British, if I were a betting creature… 🙂

Now here’s another interesting piece:

The Predater

The Predater

Talk about mixed messages! This knife looks like a cross between a Ka-bar, and a tanto. A hybrid westernized tanto at that. The grip features a simple tsuka-maki, running up to a simple stubby upturned guard, and on into a polished, rather beefy looking straight blade, with what looks like it could be a false back edge all running into a hybrid clip tanto point.

Hard to tell from the pic. But it certainly looks like it means “bidness”.

Finally, here’s another quite interesting short sword, for obvious reasons called the “Waki”:

The Waki

The Waki

For those of you wondering why the name is obvious, it may help to know that the japanese have a short sword called the Wakizashi, that is traditionally worn as a pair with a full size Katana. This sword is just the right size, so I presume that is why it was given a contracted form of the name.

Lacking a guard and habaki, this blade might be troublesome to wield in combat, however from an aesthetic standpoint… Whoa… I think it just got a little hot in here… 🙂

I have but one concern though. I don’t rightly know if the “Waki” was really the most dignified name to give this particular blade. But to be fair, a curvy blade of dark swirling damascus would, by any other name, would still look just as beautiful…

What more can I say… It’s a thing of beauty… 😀

The Waki and friends – [Hayes Knives]

A Mini Ninja Tool Kit.

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009

And just in case you are wondering, no, I am not talking about a tool kit for little ninjas. Though, as a side note, I am sure they do exist and are just as deadly as their larger counterparts. But no, they will not be the topic of today’s post. Rather I will be talking about ninja weapons. I’m sure you have all seen those gazillion piece ninja sword sets, that have hira shuriken in the guards, small knives, throwing spikes, and blinding powder in the saya, etc. etc, etc. Well, today I ran into a small scale version of that kit. the Ninja Battle Tanto set:

Ninja Tanto Battle Set

Ninja Tanto Battle Set

Yessiree, everything the aspiring ninja might need for a little clandestine action, all in an ultra mobile, compact form factor. Now technically, I think it is inaccurate to call this a “battle” set, since to my knowledge, Ninjas are not traditionally known to engage in “battle” in a traditional sense. They were more the special forces/guerrilla type, experts in asymmetrical warfare. So I prefer to call this the Ninja “tool kit”

And it’s got lots of cool tools. in addition to the cool little jet black, full tang tanto, with a push dagger hidden in the pommel, it’s got a sweet little sheath that holds three bo shuriken, and a small compartment for Tashibishi (aka Caltrops) that could be thrown on the ground to dissuade any pursuers eager to expedite your demise at the completion of a mission. 😀

To be honest, I’m not a big fan of excessive amalgamated accessorization. Putting too many things in one place can cause problems. I can see those bo shuriken getting caught on things as you walked by, maybe even interfering with the deployment of the knife, so I’d probably find a better less snag-likely place to put them. And the same goes for the caltrops box. It’s a cool idea, but I think it would hinder any kind of low profile knife carry. It would also get relocated.

However the push dagger in the grip ois a nice touch, and I really do like the profile of the blade on this tanto. It has the traditional tanto profile, with a false edge which would give it a great combination of both cutting and thrusting ability. Pretty cool design. So, Do a little trimming and relocation of the sheath accessories, and Voila! A nice little ninja EDC kit.

Just the kind of thing any enterprising ninja might need. 😀

Ninja Tanto battle set tool kit – [True Swords]

Twin Dragon Daggers

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Double the Dragons! Double the fun!! Or so people would have you believe. Though, to be honest, I think it does depend *greatly* on the disposition of the dragons in question. But that’s just my opinion. Take it or leave it. 🙂  Back to the topic at hand.

Twin Dragons!

Draco Twin Daggers

Draco Twin Daggers

An interesting set of dragon daggers aren’t they? Though they are both a bit busy for my personal taste, I like some of the design aspects of these knives, though I will admit to being biased, as Draco is one of my favorite Dragons of all time.

We have a set of two daggers, one large and one small, both of which reside in separate pockets of the same sheath. Pretty nifty. They are essentially identical apart from the size, so I’ll just run through the design of the larger one. The hilt isn’t half bad, with a small cast polished metal pommel, with what looks like talons curving inwards at the base.

The ridged jet black grip looks equally cool, though I get the feeling it wouldn’t be too comfortable. The guard is quite the interesting bit, featuring a simple straight rear talon/spike, with the beginnings of the same spike on the front, terminating in a large, upward pointing  winglike extension. I actually liked that design feature.

The rest is a little… too much maybe. Above the guard is an extension of the cast metal hilt covering the bottom of the blade to form a short ornate ricasso with a rearwards and downwards pointing spike. Still a bit busy, though I liked the spike. The blade, however, tops the cake in terms of interesting flaws. At least in my humble opinion.

The blade has a large curving void just above the ricasso, which, as I have argued on many occasions, is generally not a good idea from a strength perspective. Above that, and compounding the problem, are a set of rearward facing spikes cut into the spine of the blade. Opposite the void on the front are a set of small divots. More unnecessary cuts. Above all of this, the blade is etched with an interesting tribal design.

To top it all off, the blade has a rather unusual contour. It appears to be double edged, but actually curves inwards. This design is unusual, though not unheard of, but is generally reserved for garden implements and specialized tools, like Karambits. The reason is that cuts using such a blade will tend to push the knife back towards the hand, or out of the hand, (depending on the direction of the cut) and this generally does not play well to the general ergonomics of knife use.

The Karambit is a general exception to this rule, as it usually incorporates a ring that makes positive retention possible, regardless of the grip. But that is a subject that deserves it’s own post. The point is, on this knife, it is just another in a long line of bad design ideas.

At least they look cool, have black grips, and are named after a cool dragon.

That’s got to count for something right?

Draco Twin Daggers – [True Swords]

Thundering Steel Typhoons!

Monday, June 1st, 2009

Today I’ve got a little bit o’ inclement weather to share with you all. A typhoon, in black steel. Yeah, a nice bit o steel if you ask me. Rife with unique and unusual idiosyncrasies, but a beautiful blade nonetheless:

Black Fantasy Typhoon Hook Dagger

Black Fantasy Typhoon Hook Dagger

What’d I tell ya. You are looking at the Black Fantasy Typhoon Hook Dagger, by Robert Shiflett. As usual with these kinds of things, it’s got some issues. But I can’t be too hard on it because it does come right out and call itself a fantasy dagger. No pretense at functionality whatsoever, just another pretty piece of black steel to hang on your wall, or set on your mantle, or whatever you do with these things.

Me, I just critique them and walk away. But I’m bad like that. Anyway, back to the blade in question.

So what we have here is a nice little knife that doesn’t take itself too seriously, with a sweet curvy blade. I love curves. And points. And this knife has got lots of both. So I can’t complain about that. The blade is a complex set of said curves, sweeping backwards from the tip, down the spine into this weird void, guarded on top by a lone, forward pointing spike.

The edge of the blade, exhibits a similar, but smaller idiosyncrasy, winding it’s way down the tip, and extending over the top of the grip, punctuated at guard level by a single small divot, whose purpose, again, eludes me. On the side of the blade itself, a triangular metal accent piece sits between the large void in the spine and the front divot. As I have stated many times before, I have a thing against unnecessary voids in a blade, as they simply introduce weaknesses, and this blade is no exception.

In fact this blade exemplifies exactly why I dislike these voids, because as you can see, the end result is that the blade is connected to the hilt by a relatively small section of steel, and it could have been so much stronger without those voids. I know this wasn’t intended to be a practical weapon, but that is just a big no-no in my book. (*wags finger*) At least the hilt makes up for it in a rather interesting aesthetic style.

The hilt is quite nice, if rather iffy on the ergonomics front. It is designed to look like it is made from offset stacked ovoid sections of ebony, capped at each end by metal guard and pommel pieces. The twisting sections of grip is probably where the “Typhoon” section of it’s nomenclature came from. But I can’t help but wonder how all those sharp edges would feel against ones palm.

However my favorite part of the hilt is the little talon that extends from the pommel of the weapon. A black steel hooked talon, which, again, is probably the source of  the “Hook dagger” name. A trivial observations, of course, but I can’t help it. With a name as wordy as “Black Fantasy Typhoon Hook Dagger” I just feel the need to kind of  justify each and every word.

But that, as usual, is just me. Almost as idiosyncratic as the blades I like to critique… Almost.

Black Fantasy Typhoon Hook Dagger by Robert Shiflett – [All Things Medieval]

How to be Kawaii in a Cruel, Cruel World…

Sunday, November 9th, 2008

OK, so every now and then I run into weapons that cause a big ‘ol grin to split across the face of yours truly. And i don’t mean a grimace of pain from a horrible weapon, but rather from quirky looking weapons that are actually very well designed, but posses some unique quality that just makes them… cute.

There. I said it. Not just cool. But cute. I’m gonna have to wash my mouth out with concentrated hydrochloric acid after this post, but here it is:

Black Cat Defense Key Chain

Black Cat Defense Key Chain

[click image to view full size]

This is the Black Cat defense Keychain. 🙂 Yeah. I had the same reaction. Basically a small stainless steel keychain ornament, finished in black made in the shape of a sitting, wide eyed black cat. My favorite kind of cat, too, just fyi.

Yes, yes chuckle/giggle all you like, I was impressed. First because this design actually makes for a very potent weapon. I mean look at it. Really look at it. It’s a mini punch dagger. An innocuous, easy to use hand weapon. In black. In an remarkably non threatening (some would say cute) form factor.

Perfect for anyone who didn’t want to be blatantly carrying a weapon around, but still wants a little extra protection. Ok, I’m done. Can’t go any further with this without permanently scarring my masculinity…

At least they didn’t try to do this in a “Hello Kitty” form factor… *shiver* I might have had to kill someone to get my testosterone levels back up…

Black Cat Defense Keychain – [True Swords]

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