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Author Topic: Suitable Knives for DB Gathering Fights  (Read 9422 times)
Crafty_Dog
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« on: May 22, 2012, 05:34:04 PM »

Woof All:

The Southnark Pakal is a superb EDC Ice Pick Reverse Edge knife for FUT.  A quality drone for it is available.  I own both.  The fighter using it here is using it as intended-- so that his training replicates as closely as possible what he actually carries.  Indeed, IIRC I posted a clip of him working IFWA with it an Open Gathering or two ago.

This time however, things go a bit amiss.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60sxl90W3TY

Please discuss.

Crafty Dog
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Poidog
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« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2012, 07:12:08 PM »

I think we've found the "limit" of what trainers can be allowed at a Gathering.  I'm still for the aluminum trainers, but I think the P'kal trainer is just past the edge of safe "blunt point" for our endeavors.  I'm a little bummed, because it's going to take my favored trainer out of the game for Gatherings, but I'm far more concerned for fighter safety.  Big salute to C-Dragon Dog for being the willing crash test dummy during this particular laboratory experiment.   undecided

Aloha, Poi
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sting
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« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2012, 07:45:29 PM »

Wow, that was a gusher !

The usual aluminum trainers cut from 1/4" aluminum sheets quickly pick up burrs from striking the fencing mask or from a point drop on concrete.  I'd recommend checking each knife for burrs and sanding accordingly.  Bob Burgee recommended clear car door edge protectors for covering the edges of the blade, and I've used the for years in various knife sparring.  A polish beyond the brushed aluminum does a good job of increasing the fear factor.  

While the video footage will be referenced for decades to come, it's an example of playing on the edge.  A lower risk/lower fun choice would be to provide fighters with a choice of a set of long or short aluminium training blades with appropriate tips and edges.
« Last Edit: May 23, 2012, 01:47:18 AM by sting » Logged

Baltic Dog

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Tony Torre
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« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2012, 11:20:46 AM »

One of my students manufactures polymer training drones which are quite thick for this purpose.  He mimics our carry knives.  We've found that even the thick aluminum trainers can cut if they get a bur on them or if they are too thin. 

Tony Torre
Miami Arnis Group
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2012, 11:58:53 AM »

Good discussion gentlemen.   Tony, I'd like to get a look at those.  Please email me at craftydog@dogbrothers.com
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sting
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« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2012, 03:55:43 PM »

At past Gatherings, I brought two aluminum blades:  one for myself, one for my opponent.  The primary reason was that i didn't want to be stuck or cut with one of those diamond-shaped kung Fu blades with the nastiest burrs, even on the tip.  The secondary reason is that I didn't want my opponent to use a plastic blade.  Since this event is largely propagated with pictures (video clips are great, but they seem to have inadequate circulation until very recently), I don't think it's a good idea to showcase the world's premiere weapons fighting event with plastic implements of destruction.
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Baltic Dog

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« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2012, 04:45:23 PM »

At past Gatherings, I brought two aluminum blades:  one for myself, one for my opponent.  The primary reason was that i didn't want to be stuck or cut with one of those diamond-shaped kung Fu blades with the nastiest burrs, even on the tip.  The secondary reason is that I didn't want my opponent to use a plastic blade.  Since this event is largely propagated with pictures (video clips are great, but they seem to have inadequate circulation until very recently), I don't think it's a good idea to showcase the world's premiere weapons fighting event with plastic implements of destruction.

I should probably chime in here.  Ironically, I used to use one of those small Nok knives -- the black foam ones with hard plastic inside.  I liked that it's very hard to hurt someone with them, but it seems that the very harmlessness of the device may be a liability -- both in terms of immediate effect and of perception, as you note.  I remember right after you and I fought in the Fall that Guro Crafty said, "Next time consider an aluminum knife: it's easier to see."  (Or words to that effect, I apologize for any misquotation.)  I realize now that I inadvertently created just the situation you strive to avoid; and I apologize for that.

In any case, our fight did get me thinking about the desirability of the large aluminum trainers; and I ordered one.  (Thanks to Bob Burgee -- who rushed me a replacement days before the Tribal when the original was lost in transit.)  When I fought Beowful, we inspected one another's weapons (it was a knife fight), and he had a comparable aluminum trainer.  Long story short, we both took some damage as a result of engaging in a fairly close, aggressive way.  This was something I did on purpose because I was interested in understanding the engagement parameters better.  The point of this story is that I took one stab to the armpit which did, in fact, puncture me fairly well.  (It was a good, clean stab -- thank you, Beowulf.)  And in return, I delivered a pretty hard thrust to his ribs around his heart.  Fortunately, we're both fine.  I needed four stitches, and decided to avoid grappling or clinching contact for the rest of the day.  Beowulf thought at one point he might have cracked his ribs but tells me now it's just muscular bruising.  That's good news.

The important point I want to make is that above and beyond anything else, I think the main factor in what can be responsibly used is going to be the people involved -- and the ability to find the line within the code, 'friends at the end of the day'.  I am still new to these rules of engagement and have only had a few knife fights, so I am hardly an expert.  The question is what level of restraint is implied by using the aluminum trainers.  I feel confident that a relatively 'sporting' style of engagement can work with the trainers.  In that case, both parties work to control distance in such a way that any cuts/thrusts are relatively controlled.  I think that style of what Guro Crafty calls 'sport knife dueling' works well with the aluminum.

What I'm not sure about is what happens if one or both parties wants to change the mindset to simulate something different, more primal.  Well, yes, I am sure: I think there's an injury risk which *might* be too great.  I brought the new knife in order to explore that boundary and with the intention of trying to understand how more 'realistic' contact could be used to sharpen things further.  It all worked out well, but I did find what is -- for me -- the edge from which I would want to back down.  I'm really glad I *didn't* crack Beowulf's rib, or worse.  And I'm really glad his thrust didn't go just a little deeper, or hit in a slightly different spot.  We were lucky, but I believe some of the 'luck' was that even while increasing the pressure and intensity -- there was no intent to harm: it was still a 'conversation' between friends.

I'm not sure yet what this means for the choices I will make in the future.  I think it means I won't try to replicate that situation in quite the same way.  I think maybe it means that in addition to agreeing on weapons, perhaps I need to engage in more specific discussion and negotiation of the parameters implied by the weapons chosen.  Perhaps this discussion can catalyze a more general discussion of *that* topic.  For example, later that day Gong Fu and I had spear vs sword fight -- in which we agreed to respect the point of his staff as a speartip, and the edge of my wooden bokken as a blade.  Even though it was *not* 'harder' contact, I felt that it did promote 'higher consciousness' within the context of what a Gathering represents.

I still want to explore the more aggressive ranges of the knife.  It is something I do not understand well enough yet.  But maybe for that to work it will be necessary to agree to work with the safer foam-covered knives.  By the same token, given that the 'hidden knife' is generally used as a weapon of last resort to combat clinching or grappling, I am not sure whether it's realistically possible to expect to engage in that situation accurately even with the thick aluminum trainers.  There's something valuable about the ambiguity, but the ambiguity also creates danger because there's not a commonly agreed upon meaning to the presence of the knife.  We don't want to engage in a point-sparring or rules-controlled mentality, but maybe we need more specific agreement about what each weapon 'means' in any given fight.

This is getting long, so I will end here.  I don't know the right answer but thought my experience of the situation seemed relevant in terms of focusing some of the many complex issues I see involved here.  Beause this is all still quite new to me, I am thinking it through for the first time.  Even if the answers that would clear up my confusion are already well-known, it might be useful to discuss them again.  That might help the 'wisdom of the tribe' to expand into greater specificity in terms of how the knife can be used productively and *somewhat* safely.

Mongolian Dog
« Last Edit: May 23, 2012, 04:47:16 PM by Mongolian Dog » Logged
sting
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« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2012, 06:14:11 PM »

Quite a treatise, Mongolian Dog.

I've noticed that the most damage comes from the shorter training blades, but that's not to say the longer blades also cause their share.  In my own sparring club, we noticed major damage early on from some of the short Edges2 and a Spyderco replica from another designer.  These blades are great for training technique and were never advertised as sparring blades. Bob Burgee made me a pair of blades with custom tip for one of his shorter blades with a nearly-perfect half hemisphere and polished to a mirror shine.   A pair of these shorter blades were seen in my (a pitiful good-morning wake-up on my part) match with Tony Ober at the Sept 2011 Gathering.  I have some longer blades (Fighter model) with a similar half-hemisphere tip.  Bob was hesitant to make them as not only were they not beautiful in any way, but also they just didn't feel right.  
« Last Edit: May 23, 2012, 06:32:04 PM by sting » Logged

Baltic Dog

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« Reply #8 on: May 23, 2012, 06:28:21 PM »

Quite a treatise, Mongolian Dog.

Yeah, sorry about that.  I have just been thinking all this through and would rather talk it out than end up on either end of a mistake -- having just had a close call.  I think the idea of an extra-blunt modfiied tip might make sense even despite the aesthetic problem, if it makes it significantly harder to puncture someone.  Do you have any good pictures of those?

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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2012, 11:58:52 PM »

One of the advantages of the forum format (contrast FB) is that not only does it readily allow for longer and more thoughtful posts, it also is much easier to find them later -- especially here on the DBMA forum where we take thread coherency seriously.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2012, 07:56:42 AM »


My current thinking is this:

We need to be clear that we are looking at more than one knife application here.  Lets begin by identifying what they are and some of the questions presented by each application

SPORT KNIFE DUELING:

In SKD both fighters “respect the blade” i.e. each seeks to score/kill with little or no consequence.  Not only is the SKD a highly enjoyable ritual fight, it also develops very important skills.

This brings up a different type of knife application: The crazed chimpanzee with a spike (a.k.a. the prison sewing machine) – the person who is coming to kill you RIGHT NOW with an attack that is premised upon overwhelming force and frequently launched by ambush.   Assumption of an “opponent” who “respects the knife” as assumed in SKD can lead to unfortunate consequences against such an attack—a tragic version of the Jim Carrey skit wherein as a karate instructor he says to a student who training attack with a real knife scored because he attacked differently than Carrey assumed,  “You must be a beginner.  You don’t know how to stab me in the right way.”

As many/most of us appreciate, people often don’t realized they have been cut or stabbed until AFTER a fight is over—so can we really say without reservation that “respecting the blade” is realistic?  And not realizing that one has been cut or stabbed is all the easier when the knife is some sort of SKD knife!

So, if we want to have a Gathering knife fight that allows us to experience and thus prepare for the behavior of the reckless, what are we to do?

One thought that occurs is our old friend PAIN.  After all, pain is often a very sage advisor—as was said the RCSFg -1, “In the silence of a stick buzzing by you head you decide just which self it is you wish to defend.”

Can we use pain to provoke more realistic responsive behavior?  What risks are we willing to take in its pursuit?

Apart from a dalliance with the Shocknives (I still use them when I teach anti-knife btw) most people have moved beyond rattan dowels and dorky martial arts plastic knives to various aluminum trainers or hard trainers made from sundry synthetics.  They may be the size of opened EDC knives or more substantial fixed blade concept knives—some of which can reach Bowie/Kukri sizes.   Some are relatively rounded in their edges and points and , , , some are not.

Let us first look at SMALL KNIVES:

In the clip with C-Dragon Dog we see an example of a drone of an actual EDC knife, the Spyderco Southnark P’akal.  This is an excellent FUT knife.  I own one and I own the drone to it as well.  The man with the drone in this fight acted with good and clean thought process.  Putting it in my words, I think he was saying to himself “I want to test myself with the drone of my EDC.” 

The problem is as we saw—and we must squarely face the implications of what other targets it might puncture.  Something arterial perhaps?  Femoral?  Something important in the neck or in the well?  Or?

It seems to me that we have now seen that in SKD at a DB Gathering such a knife is out of place.

Does it have any place at all?  In my opinion it may.  The purpose for which it was made is to train the draw, to train movements, and to develop IFWA under true stress testing.  What if its use were to be limited to the purpose for which it was designed?   After all, we have seen the same fighter pull this very drone from his pants pocket and open it during a DB Open Gathering fight that went to the ground.   

However, once the knife is open, again we face the same safety issues. 

LOOKING AT LARGE KNIVES:

Though we do no yet have the clip yet and have only the foto of the armpit and the blood on the shirt, we can use this as an example of a puncture by a large blade.  Again the question presents itself about what consequences might flow from other and more dangerous points of impact.   

With the large blades it is to be remembered that many fighters swing theirs with great gusto; the size and the weight of these training knives naturally calling to motions of lopping things off or laying them open.  By their nature, they tend to promote “respect the blade” attitude of the fighters precisely because of the risk of pain.  Indeed, with the length, mass, and speed involved these knives in addition to the risk of penetration we need to squarely assess the risks of impact as well.  What are the chances of broken bones?

So, what are the safety requirements of a “Gathering Fight Knife”?

It seems readily apparent that it should have a suitably rounded tip.  I noticed that Bitch had some plastic around the edge of her aluminum kukri; I heard someone say it is of the sort that is put on the edge of a car door so that it does not ding the paint of a neighboring car should it bump into it upon opening.  This seems a promising idea.

I offer this not as final word, but simply as a contribution to the conversation.
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Tony Torre
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« Reply #11 on: May 24, 2012, 12:04:52 PM »

Crafty,

I'll snap some pics tonight and send you an e-mail.

An important consideration I look at when choosing a training knife is the length of the blade.  Does it match my carry blade?  This more than any other factor will determine its effectiveness as a training tool in my eyes.  Fortunately I learned this early on in my training when I missed shots that should have landed due to using a slightly shorter training blade.  Even a difference of as little as an inch will effect your accuracy.

Tony Torre
Miami Arnis Group
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sting
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« Reply #12 on: May 24, 2012, 01:11:14 PM »

Crafty wrote "I noticed that Bitch had some plastic around the edge of her aluminum kukri; I heard someone say it is of the sort that is put on the edge of a car door so that it does not ding the paint of a neighboring car should it bump into it upon opening.  This seems a promising idea."

This is the same car door protector I used for my other blades, and I've used them for over a decade with roughly 20 knife rounds / month.  They're available at Kragan/O-Reilly auto shops, and I prefer the clear color.  They are just wide enough to fit around the beveled edge of most of Burgee's blades, but not all.  The 4 corners and the protrusion around the bend of the blades's tip of these plastic guards must also be beveled and sanded, but removing too much material weakens the guard where it's most needed.  I used those in a long thin box as they allowed for a single piece to cover the entire blade.

The disadvantage of the car door protector is the additional weight and the appearance of a "plastic" blade, but I compensated by using mirror-polished aluminum (after more than ten years, they don't have a mirror shine but still look better and scarier).  I just gave away the industrial belt grinder,  but I'm happy to describe the process.  Bob Burgee stopped mirror-polishing his blades long ago, I recall.

The car door protectors increase the area of the blade's tip, but primarily, they prevent burrs on the tip of the blade.   This was a bigger problem for my crew as we fought on a concrete surfaces, and dropped knives during the rounds, then picked them up during the fight.  A burr on the tip punctured and ripped skin , even through t-shirts.   Burrs created during the round from striking another blade, the  mask or falling on the concrete are not removed and are  a problem.  The additional weight increases the risk breaking fingers, which was a problem for us as we fought all knife fights with thin gloves, work or gardening.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2012, 01:14:56 PM by sting » Logged

Baltic Dog

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« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2012, 01:28:12 PM »

[I think the idea of an extra-blunt modfiied tip might make sense even despite the aesthetic problem, if it makes it significantly harder to puncture someone.  Do you have any good pictures of those?


Mongolian Dog, I gathered up the blades but I haven't found the unmodified Edges2 short blade.  I hope to post pix during the long weekend.  Since I've seen a number of burred blades at Gatherings and martial arts training seminars, I wouldn't be surprised if your gash was from a blade with a burr on the tip.
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Baltic Dog

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« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2012, 02:08:29 PM »

Mongolian Dog, I gathered up the blades but I haven't found the unmodified Edges2 short blade.  I hope to post pix during the long weekend.  Since I've seen a number of burred blades at Gatherings and martial arts training seminars, I wouldn't be surprised if your gash was from a blade with a burr on the tip.

Thanks, I look forward to all the pictures.

As far as my gash goes, there might have been a burr, but I didn't notice anything when I inspected it.  That said, I was less focused on the issue then than I would be now -- and might have missed it.

- Mongolian Dog
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C-Mighty Dog
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« Reply #15 on: May 24, 2012, 05:52:28 PM »

In regards to Mongolian Dogs wound, it wasn't from an unsuitable blade, bur, edge or any other matter, it was simply from force on force (with momentum) going into a hollow cavity such as the Armpit, where there is no structural rienforcement such as muscle fat or bone.
As a knife fight, it was more of how a prison fight would be, Mongolian was going for a clinch, Beowolf was thrusting to prevent it.
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sting
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« Reply #16 on: May 24, 2012, 10:17:37 PM »

Here's a close-up of Bob Burgee's "Fighter" model with the clear car door edge :


And some zoomed-out pix:


http://dogbrothers.com/wp-content/gallery/gathering-june-2005/DBJune2005_5348.jpg

http://dogbrothers.com/wp-content/gallery/gathering-june-2006/DBGatheringJune2006_DSC_0657_Web.jpg

NOTE :  that was the last Gathering (June 2005) in which I wore an elbow or knee pad.  Many told me that I would get my knee cracked and be crippled like the guy in the 1st Dog Brother Gathering video, so I put a pad on the right-lead elbow and knee.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2012, 10:21:29 PM by sting » Logged

Baltic Dog

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« Reply #17 on: May 24, 2012, 11:14:31 PM »

Woof Baltic:

URL please for Bob's knives?

All:

A moment for a frivolous tangent:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=h_vvI26NnwE
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sting
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« Reply #18 on: May 25, 2012, 01:33:47 AM »

Woof Crafty,

After sampling Mr. Burgee's wares,  I settled on these for knife sparring :

Fighter for the long blade:    http://trainingblades.com/fighter/

Chisel Tip for the short blade:  http://trainingblades.com/chisel-tip/

I'll post pix of the rounded versions of the Chisel Tip this weekend, though that involves finding my unmodified Chisel Tip ... somewhere ...


For slow knife training, I prefer the Gator Back for its medium blade length and funky look: http://trainingblades.com/gatorback/

and a Spyderco Endura replica made by a skilled training blade maker and Eskrima stylist in Florida


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Baltic Dog

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« Reply #19 on: May 28, 2012, 11:20:39 PM »

Mongolian Dog

http://youtu.be/6K2a6Phqwj4
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Mongolian Dog
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« Reply #20 on: May 29, 2012, 11:59:03 AM »


That is one dead dog.

- Mongolian Dog
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #21 on: May 30, 2012, 07:48:30 PM »

Pasting here a post of mine on DBMA FB. 

===========

I've had my computer at the shop and now re-enter. I'm busy catching up on several hundred emails (lots of which are semi-spam) and so have no time at the moment for extended comments, but I would note ...that while we say "Protect yourself at all times" this should not be taken to remove the responsibility of acting honorably on the part of the other person (i.e. no "Hey, he shoulda checked better" attitude).

IMHO I file what happened to Matt under the heading of "Sometimes Excrement Happens".

OTOH having puncture wounds like we did here I attribute to a combination of design issues and serious fighters pushing the envelope-- this is a Dog Brothers Tribal Gathering of the Pack after all!!!

With regard to design issues, my current thinking is that drone folders are going to tend to be of a gage that is too narrow and a blade design that is too pointy for SKD. If someone wishes to use his drone to test his IFWA, IMHO attached with that comes the responsibility to substantially back off from actually using it as a tool, or perhaps to not even use it at all for contact once it is successfully drawn.

The second design issue is of size. Big lone aluminum trainers become substantial impact weapons in their own right. My intuitive sense of things is that hand, wrist, ulna breaks and the like (concucssions?) may be even more likely with them than with a decent stick. Current conversation is focusing one car door edging, but I think it was Baltic Dog (a.k.a. Gints) who told me of some reservations his experience has caused for him in this regard. Baltic? Fatter gage may help against punctures, but attendant increase in mass, hence power, increases the consequences of impact.

Finally there is the matter of the pointiness of the big knives. Obviously less surface area at the point of contact increases the risk of puncture.

My thinking at the moment leads towards aluminum trainers of a certain gage and well rounded tips. I anticipate DBI offering suitable "Gathering Knives" in the not too distant future. If someone would like to be our subcontractor in this regard please contact me at Craftydog@dogbrothers.com

HCTHC
CD
GF
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Spartan Dog
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« Reply #22 on: July 12, 2012, 11:49:13 AM »

Some photos, posted on behalf of Crafty Dog.

These are from an e-mail Crafty received some time ago, via a German practitioner, and demonstrate the injury received from an "aluminum knife" (I assume this means an aluminum trainer).

   


« Last Edit: July 12, 2012, 11:50:49 AM by Kostas » Logged

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sting
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« Reply #23 on: July 12, 2012, 01:49:09 PM »

Ghastly pic, Kostas.  Would you be able to provide the model of the trainer that caused this injury?   Also, what are the circumstances that led to this face injury?
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Baltic Dog

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« Reply #24 on: July 12, 2012, 04:39:38 PM »

Baltic:

   I may see him when I am in Switzerland in August and will ask.
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Kaju Dog
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« Reply #25 on: September 18, 2012, 01:03:34 AM »

FFT :  steal wool/  File/ sandpaper.   Check all your edges BEFORE and AFTER every fight.   IME:  small burrs and fisher hooked edges happen when blades connect with masks, other blades and from a variety of contact possibilities.   Proper Preparation is the first step in prevention of serious injury.   

JIC :  Bringing suters, super glue, safety pins and skin staplers Wink



KD
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« Reply #26 on: September 18, 2012, 01:13:57 AM »

Thoughts on this untested brain

fart  evil

Picture an mma rash guard with the shoulder pads from a womans shirt sewn or just put in the armpit between skin and shirt??  Also,  how often does an injury of this extreme occur? ??  Are we overreacting and should trust in the honor system?

Huh
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #27 on: April 13, 2013, 08:28:11 PM »

In the next week or two our new line of DBMA Sport Knife Dueling knives should become available.
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darvis
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« Reply #28 on: June 04, 2013, 09:26:58 PM »

Speaking of the new DBMA Sport Knife Dueling knives, I was just at the DBMA store in didn't see them there.  Where can I find these knives?  For the record Crafty brought 2 of the new trainers to the last Tribal.  I used them both in different knife fights.  They have a rounder edge and a much rounder, almost semi circular tip.  As for the safety impact of the new design, you are gonna have to ask the other guy standing on the wrong end of the knife.  Smiley

Darin
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« Reply #29 on: June 05, 2013, 02:00:24 PM »

Ugh, they should be up by now, let me check in with Cindy on this.
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