PDA

View Full Version : knife length limits ...



TomF
04-01-2009, 10:06 AM
Over on Chad's "items for deployment" thread, I posted my bafflement about why apparently a knife with more than a 6" blade is prohibited by the US forces. Considered to be an "illegal weapon," the possession of which could cause trouble for the soldier.

I withdrew the post there, because I didn't want to cause drift in Chad's thread ...

... but can someone pls. tell me why there's such a rule? What possible horrific harm could be done in combat, by a knife with a 7 or 8" blade ... that couldn't be done more effectively by a full-auto rifle, or a grenade, or a jet fighter, or one of Chad's honking big guns?

I can understand limiting soldiers to only using weapons they're officially issued ... but it seems that's not the case. A soldier can take their own knife, with a 5 3/4" blade. Dunno, but perhaps their own sidearm too.

It's as mystifying to me as the many instances we've heard about here on the forum of blade length laws in various US states too ... varying betwen 4" and 6" IIRC, depending on the jurisdiction. Why in heaven's name can you get a permit to carry a concealed sidearm, but not to carry a large knife? What's the rationale?

htom
04-01-2009, 10:44 AM
This is the government; expect neither rationality nor logic.

I think I finally realized that these laws were just capricious, arbitrary, and nonsensical when I was introduced to the idea of measuring the length of a blade along the cutting edge (around the curves).

BrianW
04-01-2009, 10:47 AM
The Army doesn't want their soldiers to be confused for Crocodile Dundee...

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v136/BrianW/crocodile-dundee-screenshot-you-cal.jpg

TomF
04-01-2009, 11:00 AM
To make this more muddled yet, I've an acquaintance from another forum who retired after serving as a sergeant in a combat role. Multiple actions, including tours both in Afghanistan and Iraq. He carried a khukuri with an 8" blade throughout. And despite this apparent breach of the rules, was highly regarded, decorated, etc. by his superiors.

A rule honoured in the breach?

James McMullen
04-01-2009, 12:31 PM
So what about all those ads you see for the Marine Corps where they're clearly holding swords with blades longer than 6"? Betcha it's because Marines are too tough to care about such petty regulations!

TomF
04-01-2009, 12:38 PM
So what about all those ads you see for the Marine Corps where they're clearly holding swords with blades longer than 6"? Betcha it's because Marines are too tough to care about such petty regulations!Dunno. Maybe the swords are plastic.

Google told me that in Japan, some US Marines were getting in trouble because the rather manly length of their pocketknives (by regulation not to exceed 3.75") overstepped the legal limit in Japan. They're now allowed to continue to carry such desperate weapons while they're on base, but not off.

This in the land of katanas.

ccmanuals
04-01-2009, 01:27 PM
Hmm, the Air Force and Army use the M-9 bayonet which is the standard issue for the M-16. I actually have one of these at home. Anyhow this bayonet has a blade length of 7 1/4 inches.

http://www.olive-drab.com/od_edged_weapons_bayonet_m9.php

George Roberts
04-01-2009, 01:43 PM
There are all sorts of rules the military needs to comply with during both wars and peace, and in the various countries.

After all a war without rules would be ...

TomF
04-01-2009, 01:54 PM
Well, some googling 'round located some online government regulations.

http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid=43ebc090b0f32e29b580b9a8f61764c6&rgn=div6&view=text&node=32:3.1.1.4.17.7&idno=32

That puts limits on daily carry (3" blade or less). While something bigger can be owned ... as can privately owned firearms ... they must be signed in and out of whatever weapons storage facility exists when used. The regs talk about legit uses being for hunting.

Says nothing about taking private weapons into combat, though my acquaintance did exactly that.

Kaa
04-01-2009, 02:00 PM
This in the land of katanas.

Traditionally, only the nobility (samurai) were allowed to own and carry katanas. For simple folk the penalty for owning a katana was death.

Kaa

huisjen
04-01-2009, 02:09 PM
And enlisted only get cutlasses when boarding. Unless they prefer a boarding axe.

Dan

htom
04-01-2009, 06:23 PM
The "new" USMC sword is a stainless steel display piece with a sharp tip. Many, though, are proud of antiques that can slice forehand and backhand, as well as chop.

Paul Pless
04-01-2009, 07:45 PM
This in the land of katanas.

Traditionally, only the nobility (samurai) were allowed to own and carry katanas. For simple folk the penalty for owning a katana was death.

KaaDidn't MacArthur outlaw Katanas?

Phillip Allen
04-01-2009, 07:59 PM
Didn't MacArthur outlaw Katanas?

and had them dumped in the sea

Glen Longino
04-01-2009, 08:33 PM
I have a very well made older machete with 23" blade.
I keep it in my car alongside the baseball bat, claw hammer, and .40 Cal pistola.
No, I ain't paranoid! I am prepared!

Paul Pless
04-01-2009, 08:40 PM
I am prepared!a little under prepared for the average texan...

Glen Longino
04-01-2009, 08:54 PM
a little under prepared for the average texan...

I don't tell everything on public forums, Paul.:rolleyes::eek::)
But All my weapons are legal.:)

Memphis Mike
04-01-2009, 09:53 PM
I have a very well made older machete with 23" blade.
I keep it in my car alongside the baseball bat, claw hammer, and .40 Cal pistola.
No, I ain't paranoid! I am prepared!

I bet you're a religious football nut too, aren't you.

Glen Longino
04-01-2009, 09:58 PM
I bet you're a religious football nut too, aren't you.

No, I'm a cheerleader nut!
Got pictures? Yes? I figgered!

Vince Brennan
04-02-2009, 12:15 AM
And enlisted only get cutlasses when boarding. Unless they prefer a boarding axe.

Dan

Hey! I LIKED my axe! I was unhappy when I made BM2 and they made me take the cutlass instead.

cs
04-02-2009, 06:56 AM
Tom I haven't been ignoring this thread, just busy.

During the first Gulf War a lot of us carried "illegal" weapons, be it knives to long or personal weapons. About the only thing extra I had was my US Camillus (see photo below). Not that I carried it as a "weapon" but rather as a good heavy knife, and these always come in handy. I'll take it again, because that is the way I am.

http://www.old-smithy.info/bayonets/fullsize/USA/US%20camillus%20marine%20fighting.jpg

Chad

paladin
04-02-2009, 09:20 AM
The center picture...8 inch blade is what I carried in SEA

http://i407.photobucket.com/albums/pp154/paladinsfo1/randall2.jpg

Ethan
04-02-2009, 10:17 AM
TomF, it's an issue of personal vs. issued (provided). Personal weapons, which a knife with a blade greater than 6" is classified, are illegal.By the letter of the law. I'm just sayin'.

Shang
04-02-2009, 10:55 AM
Drifting further from the actual topic of the thread...

I carry a G.I. entrenching tool beside the car seat. It could be a wicked weapon, but my real purpose is for rescuing snapping turtles off the road in the spring. Don't want to lose any fingers to the snappers.
Well...okay I also carry a .22 revolver loaded with hollow-points since it is sometimes necessary to finish off badly injured turtles who are beyond saving.

(Why are they all looking at me funny...?)

Paul Pless
04-02-2009, 10:59 AM
(Why are they all looking at me funny...?)roflmao

Ethan
04-02-2009, 11:03 AM
effin turtles. Gonna cost me about $500 worth of fish by summer.

Paul Pless
04-02-2009, 11:05 AM
uhhhh... you might need a bigger shovel :eek:

http://www.nwflec.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderpictures/ghtwtommyb.jpg

P.I. Stazzer-Newt
04-02-2009, 11:07 AM
effin turtles. Gonna cost me about $500 worth of fish by summer.

Can you not eat the turtles then?

Paul Pless
04-02-2009, 11:12 AM
He could.

Thread drift....

I have a hippie vegan friend that teaches at a very rural very poor school down near where Ethan lives. A few years ago a boy in his class brought a large turtle to school. My friend Daniel, kept the turtle and wouldn't give it back for fear of harm coming to the turtle. He was reprimanded the next day by the school principal and the boy's father saying that the turtle had been caught and was being kept for food for their family.

Ethan
04-02-2009, 11:32 AM
Can you not eat the turtles then?

Well, yeah, I guess, technically.....but not really my thing.

The turtles aren't near as much fun to catch, either.

And I paid for the stock fish! :D

TomF
04-02-2009, 11:41 AM
There's always Ragnar's Forge, for a variety of axes and knives ...

http://www.ragweedforge.com/23v.gif
If you're going traditional, and don't mind standing out a bit ... this bearded axe is a pretty fair copy of an original Viking one found in Gotland, and Ragnar sells it for $45.

Shang
04-02-2009, 02:00 PM
Uhhh... I really didn't mean to hijack the thread when I mentioned the turtles.
I do rescue them from the highway though. If they are uninjured I take them a few yards off the road and send them on their way. If they're hurt but can be rehabbed we can do that. If they're too badly injured I put them away so they don't suffer.
Does rescuing a turtle matter?
It matters to the turtle.