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How Is “Tactical Value” Determined On This Chart?

Trying to come up with a useful method of calculating each of these knives’ tactical value was difficult, primarily because the characteristics that make for a good throwing knife often conflict with the characteristics that make for a good tactical knife.  My method may not be satisfying to everyone, but I tried to be objective about it, and I think that it does provide some usefulness.

Calculating “Tactical Value” on this site’s Ultimate Guide To Tactical Throwing Knives chart.

I used the following 10 characteristics to assign each knife a tactical value between 1 and 9 (not 10…9, because criteria #5 and #9 are in conflict with each other, making 9 the highest possible score).  It was basically a “yes or no” system with a point given for each “yes.”

  1. Damage (thrown)  —  if knife weighs 6 oz. or more, it gets a point.  Lightweight knives aren’t likely to do much damage.
  2. Damage (handheld)  —  if blade length is 4 in. or more, it gets a point.  Very short blades won’t typically do much damage.
  3. Balance (thrown)  —  if the knife is well-balanced at or near the midpoint for consistent throws, it gets a point.
  4. Balance (handheld)  — if the knife is evenly balanced or slightly handle-heavy, it gets a point.  Blade heavy knives can be awkward and get no points.
  5. Concealability  —  knives 10 inches or less are easier to conceal for everyday carry.
  6. Durability  —  stainless steel bends and breaks more easily than carbon steel.  So no points for the stainless steel blades.
  7. Grip  —  throwing knives with wrapped grips or handle scales are easier to grip for handheld use.  No grip…no points.
  8. No-Spin  —  Rotational throwing in a tactical situation is not ideal, so knives with straight, smooth handles that easily accommodate no-spin techniques earn a point.
  9. Long Range  —  small, lightweight knives are hard to throw accurately at longer distances, so knives with overall length of 12 in. or more and weight of 8 oz. or more got an extra point.
  10. Multiple Knives  —  let’s face it.  Even if you throw your knife and stick it perfectly, you’ll still want another knife in your hand.  So knives sold in sets of 2 or more get a point.




How To Buy Replacement Handle Scales For Cold Steel Perfect Balance And Pro Balance

Cold Steel Perfect Balance Thrower throwing knife

Hi guys,

This is just a short post to help you find replacement handles for the Perfect Balance and Pro Balance throwers from Cold Steel. I had the hardest time finding the information. I mean, it’s just NOT OUT THERE online. So I contacted Cold Steel, and here’s what they told me…

Cold Steel Pro Balance Thrower ReviewItem#: H80TB
Price: $4.99 plus shipping & handling
Call Toll Free: 800-255-4716

That sure beats replacing the whole knife.

You’re welcome =)

Cold Steel Perfect Balance Thrower Handle Scales

Throwing Knife Target Training – How To NOT Break Your Knives

How To Break Your Throwing Knives In 5 Minutes

  1. First, start with the cheapest, thinnest throwing knives you can find.
  2. Throw them wrong.  Every time.
  3. Only use throwing knife target boards made of hard wood and throw against the grain as much as possible.
  4. Make sure your throwing area has concrete floors and lots of hard objects surrounding it.
  5. Throw multiple knives at the same bullseye, so they smash into each other and bounce off.
  6. Throw them as hard as possible.  Like a boss.  Like A Ninja Boss.
  7. Throw them against a concrete wall on a military base in Kuwait, like THESE GUYS.
  8. Pound them into a concrete wall with a sledgehammer, like THOSE SAME GUYS again.

Oh Wait…

I’m sorry, you wanted to know how to prevent your throwing knives from breaking, right?  Well then, you should probably do the exact opposite of everything on that list above to minimize the chances of damaging your blades.

Nobody gets mad at their target board for getting shredded to pieces in less than a week, but when the tips break off of their 50 cent throwing knives, they throw a temper tantrum and jump on Amazon to leave a flaming 1-star review and follow up with a 5 minute YouTube rant.

Okay, most knife throwers aren’t that juvenile (not even the juvenile ones), but the point is that we sometimes forget that throwing one hard object against another hard object is a great way to end up with two broken objects.  And even high-quality knives can break on us, despite our best efforts.

No Throwing Knife Is Indestructible

Throwing knives don’t last forever, not even the best ones.  But in general, you do get what you pay for.  So the starting point for making your knives last longer is to simply start out with higher quality knives.

I’m putting together a massive throwing knife guide to help you compare lots of knives side by side and decide which knives are best for your purposes and budget.

For now though, just keep in mind that if you want to throw against wood targets, then you’re going to want to shell out a little more money to get some decent knives.  If you’re just killing time in your room throwing at pizza boxes, then any little thrower will do.  But for more serious throwing, be prepared to spend $10 to $30 per knife.  And if you’re REALLY serious about this sport, or if your knife needs go beyond personal entertainment, then be prepared to spend $50, $100 or more for pro/tactical quality commercial blades and custom throwers.

Throwing Multiple Knives

Also, whenever you’re throwing a variety of knives at your target, throw the simpler, “naked” blades first (those that are just a solid piece of metal with nothing to break off), and then throw the ones with cord grips and handle scales.  Also, throw at target boards with more than one bullseye on them or even at multiple targets.  That way you can spread out your knives and keep them from crashing into each other so much.

No Throwing Knife Target Board Is Indestructible, Either

Depending on how much you throw – and on how big and heavy your knives are – you could be going through target boards fairly quickly.  This is especially true with softer targets.

If you’re throwing indoors and using small knives, maybe 6 inches or less, then you should probably just use cardboard.  Flatten out some boxes, cut them into pieces 2-3 feet on each side, and glue the layers together to make a soft target board that is 1-2 inches thick.  This is perfect for all those cheap ninja throwing knives you see on Amazon for $10 and under.  The knives are cheap.  The targets are cheap.  You’ll improve your technique.  Your knives will last longer.  You’ll have lots of fun, impress your friends, and you’ll still have money to spare.

When you’re using larger, heavier knives though, you’ll want to place your cardboard target over the face of your wood target to soften those blows.

Now, you don’t need to do this all the time.

When you’re just starting out, you’ll definitely want to use soft targets until you’re consistently sticking the knives.  But even more experienced knife throwers will lengthen the life of their knives by using soft targets sometimes too, like when trying out a new knife that they haven’t quite got the hang of yet, or when trying out a new distance or a new technique, or when throwing knives with long, tapered points (like kunai, for instance).

Using Recycled Materials For Throwing Knife Target Boards

You don’t have to spend $40 or more for brand new 2x4s and hardware at the big chain hardware store to make a good target.

Instead, try googling, “recycled building materials” (or “reclaimed/repurposed…”).  Hopefully, you’ll find a local business in your area that sells used construction materials on the cheap.  Some will even GIVE AWAY materials for free.

Throwing Knife Target Destroyed By Cold Steel Perfect BalanceWhat these companies do is they go demolish an old house or whatever and haul away the materials.  This saves the property owners a lot of money in demo and cleanup costs.  Then the company resells those materials for pennies on the dollar.  So forget the giant warehouse construction store; go green and save some money at the same time.

When I first started throwing, I got several used interior doors and a table top for free at one of these places.  Yeah, they’re partially hollow and only lasted two or three days each (thanks to my Cold Steel Perfect Balance and Boker Magnum Bailey Ziel II), but they made great soft targets.  These allowed me to learn good technique and find my distances without trashing my new knives.  And as far as prices go, “free stuff” is pretty hard to beat.

New Knives Are Coming!

This isn’t much of a post, really.  I’m just happy because I have some new knives coming in that I ordered on Amazon.  I’ll be doing reviews of these knives once I get the hang of throwing them.  By next week I’ll be holding in my hands…

  • Cold Steel Perfect Balance
  • Boker Magnum Bailey Ziel
  • United Cutlery Gil Hibben Cord-Grip Throwers (I got a triple set of the large black ones)

New toys are fun.

I’ll probably update this post with pics and stuff when they come in…

Throwing Knife Basics

After seeing Jason Statham’s throwing knives in the The Expendables or some of the high quality blades at a local Renaissance Faire, the interest in melee weapons has no doubt peaked in recent years. With entries from such companies as Cold Steel and SOG becoming higher quality and more attractive, the interest in throwing knives is definitely increasing.

Getting Started With Throwing Knives

As there are throwing knife sets on Amazon for less than 10 bucks, it is not that hard for anyone to get into the hobby. Although they are affordable, care needs to be taken when using throwing knives; all of the usual warnings apply to the weapons, from taking all appropriate cautions to making sure that training is done on a regular basis. With throwing knives there are some additional issues that need to be debated, especially if the knives are meant for children.

Make Sure You Are Legal

A first issue is that it is advisable is to check out the legality of throwing blades in your area. Although some areas tend to give the knives a pass, other jurisdictions tend to dislike any form of weaponry, especially if there have been problems with concealed weapons. In general rural areas are likely to have fewer issues, and urban areas are likely to have them on the banned lists, but check out the local laws to make sure. Also, they are going to have to be stowed away in checked-in luggage if they are to be transported any long distance.

Safe Practices

When you first start practicing with the knives, keep in mind that the knives are sharp, and so take precautions to make sure that you are not cut by the blades. Like any other weapon, do not make the mistake of assuming that they are safe for the wielder. A thrower may want some masking tape to provide a better grip on the knife. Make sure that the target is soft until you get used to throwing it; cork boards make for the perfect target, and harder woods may cause a poorly thrown knife to bounce off. Beginners tend to make a number of mistakes, and so try to allow for those mistakes when you are first starting.

A Few Good Points About Knives

Throwing blades are a good weapon for beginners to learn; they teach basic respect, they do not take up a lot of space, and they can be practiced in the back yard. As such they are fun for almost anyone to learn with. If the person is unable to handle them, then they are unlikely to be able to handle any other weapon. These should be one of a person’s first weapons in order to insure that the person can handle them responsibly. For those looking for weapon that does not require ammunition, does not jam, and can be used in a variety of scenarios, these are a great weapon to start with.