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View Full Version : Legality of Butterfly Knives(Balisong)


Mister BLASTEE
05-06-2010, 1:03 PM
Just wondering if anyone knows the law surrounding these knives? What about practice balisong knives?

jamesob
05-06-2010, 1:05 PM
they are classified the same as switch blades iirc

Mister BLASTEE
05-06-2010, 1:07 PM
Which means they are illegal?

IrishPirate
05-06-2010, 1:08 PM
illegal

Zephyr
05-06-2010, 1:08 PM
Yup, very illegal.

RobG
05-06-2010, 1:08 PM
They look cool and evil while flipping them around in hand so they HAVE to be illegal here.

Mister BLASTEE
05-06-2010, 1:10 PM
What about practice knives?

ScorpioVI
05-06-2010, 1:16 PM
Bali trainers are OK. I have a Benchmade 42 trainer sitting at my office desk as I type this. I carry it around with me too.

professionalcoyotehunter
05-06-2010, 1:19 PM
Put a B button on it and it should be legal.:D

Mister BLASTEE
05-06-2010, 1:19 PM
Does anyone actually have the code?

ScorpioVI
05-06-2010, 1:23 PM
Balisong falls under PC 653k

http://www.ninehundred.net/~equalccw/knifelaw.html

p.s. Balis under 2" are technically legal, but damned if I'm gonna carry one...

Decoligny
05-06-2010, 1:29 PM
I believe it was case law and not actual PC language that determined that a butterfly knife = switchblade.

Mister BLASTEE
05-06-2010, 3:12 PM
Good to know. Thanks.

boxbro
05-06-2010, 3:20 PM
They look cool and evil while flipping them around in hand so they HAVE to be illegal here.

:rofl: It's crazy that this is the only logical explanation.

bigcalidave
05-06-2010, 6:21 PM
ok so everybody chill out calling them "illegal"

They are ONLY illegal under 653K
"Every person who possesses in the passenger's or driver's area of any motor vehicle in any public place or place open to the public, carries upon his or her person, and every person who sells, offers for sale, exposes for sale, loans, transfers, or gives to any other person a switchblade knife having a blade two or more inches in length is guilty of a misdemeanor. "

So you may go out of state, buy one, and drive back with it in your trunk, then play with it at home all you want. Just don't carry it around with you. Same as the switchblades.

RudyN
05-06-2010, 7:43 PM
My Butterfly knife has a blade that is only xxinches long so it stays home at my computer desk. Forgot to say that a friend of mine brought it back from the Phillippines.

bohoki
05-06-2010, 8:41 PM
i think it is under the "gravity knife" provision

but like our ak's are look alike machine guns

they also have california legal look alike ballisongs

http://cgi.ebay.com/Switch-Spring-Assisted-Stiletto-Butterfly-Blade-Knife-/270572225593?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3eff5c8439

Carnivore
05-06-2010, 9:07 PM
Bohoki is right it is considered a Gravity knife not a switch blade. Can't believe I used to carry 2 of them in plane site on my belt in my high school in 85. Now the FBI, National guard and most likely the delta force would be called if I did that.....well a kid in high school anyway.

bigcalidave
05-07-2010, 8:28 PM
Yep, I remember being a kid in Connecticut carrying ninja stars and butterfly knives to school... Wasn't that long ago either.

Astig Boy
05-20-2010, 10:17 PM
http://fototime.com/F60E38B7EA9A842/standard.jpg

:D

KylaGWolf
05-20-2010, 11:43 PM
Butterfly knives fall under the gravity clause of that PC.

And my ex husband taught me how to open a butterfly knife faster than most could open a switchblade.

247Nino
05-21-2010, 3:03 AM
knife shop at pier39 in SF sells butterflies...

CA_Libertarian
05-21-2010, 3:22 AM
I would take my own eye out if I was allowed to own one of these... good thing the CA Legislature is here to keep me safe!

Wait... you can still own these as long as the blade is <2"?!?!

The nanny state has failed me. Good thing the taxpayers will pay for my medical bills when I end up with a 1.998" knife wound to the eye!

Nick Justice
05-21-2010, 8:55 AM
653k. Every person who possesses in the passenger's or driver's
area of any motor vehicle in any public place or place open to the
public, carries upon his or her person, and every person who sells,
offers for sale, exposes for sale, loans, transfers, or gives to any
other person a switchblade knife having a blade two or more inches in
length is guilty of a misdemeanor.
For the purposes of this section, "switchblade knife" means a
knife having the appearance of a pocketknife and includes a
spring-blade knife, snap-blade knife, gravity knife or any other
similar type knife, the blade or blades of which are two or more
inches in length and which can be released automatically by a flick
of a button, pressure on the handle, flip of the wrist or other
mechanical device, or is released by the weight of the blade or by
any type of mechanism whatsoever. "Switchblade knife" does not
include a knife that opens with one hand utilizing thumb pressure
applied solely to the blade of the knife or a thumb stud attached to
the blade, provided that the knife has a detent or other mechanism
that provides resistance that must be overcome in opening the blade,
or that biases the blade back toward its closed position.
For purposes of this section, "passenger's or driver's area" means
that part of a motor vehicle which is designed to carry the driver
and passengers, including any interior compartment or space therein.

Not one word about "in the home". You could also argue that if the knife has a mechanical locking device which must be undone before allowing the user to expose the blade, this should count as a "mechanism which provides resistance that must be overcome". See the photo. All four of the knives have a latch to keep the knife closed, to avoid accidental opening.

I make no promises or guarantees, and I would need to look up any case law.

ROCKILLER
05-21-2010, 11:50 AM
Not one word about "in the home".
It doesnt have to. That section of the PC only applies to ,"the passenger's or driver's area of any motor vehicle in any public place or place open to the
public, carries upon his or her person..." At home sitting on a shelf is none of those and therefore it doesnt apply.

You could also argue that if the knife has a mechanical locking device which must be undone before allowing the user to expose the blade, this should count as a "mechanism which provides resistance that must be overcome".
You could.... but you would lose

duldej
05-23-2010, 12:07 PM
penal code section 12021 pertains to knives over 4", and excepts smaller ones in its subsection (d).

Tarn_Helm
05-23-2010, 12:13 PM
Just wondering if anyone knows the law surrounding these knives? What about practice balisong knives?

Don't know, but . . .
:useless:
:D

bohoki
05-23-2010, 12:54 PM
you mean like this

http://cgi.ebay.com/FURY-KNIVES-PRACTICE-BUTTERFLY-BOTTLE-OPENER-NIB-/370376329198

http://img.auctiva.com/imgdata/7/5/7/4/6/3/webimg/343644387_tp.jpg

obeygiant
05-23-2010, 1:31 PM
you mean like this

http://cgi.ebay.com/FURY-KNIVES-PRACTICE-BUTTERFLY-BOTTLE-OPENER-NIB-/370376329198

http://img.auctiva.com/imgdata/7/5/7/4/6/3/webimg/343644387_tp.jpg

nice find!

leitung
05-23-2010, 1:50 PM
I swear leave it to Cali to ban something cool..
I have spoons sharper then some of those knives..

GoodEyeSniper
05-23-2010, 7:13 PM
So, just to reiterate what some have already said, but posters still aren't reading it through.

Legal to have in your home. Not legal to carry, unless blade length is under 2".

Remember, it's also illegal to put a kitchen knife in your pocket and walk around town, not illegal in your home, etc...

Also, I'm not a lawyer, don't take this as legal advice :D

prkprisoner
05-23-2010, 8:27 PM
A switchblade is not legal to carry in private residence. See case law: In Re S.C. (Cal. Ct. App. - Dec. 8, 2009

"Appellant S.C. was found to be a ward of the court after police discovered a switchblade knife in his pocket during a search conducted at a private residence. Appellant contends he did not violate Penal Code section 653k (hereafter section 653k), the statute governing possession of a switchblade, because he was not in a 'public place or place open to the public' at the time the knife was found. Construing the language of section 653k, we conclude the statute is violated any time a person carries a switchblade knife on his or her person, regardless of where the possession occurs. We therefore affirm."

prkprisoner
05-23-2010, 11:47 PM
Remember, it's also illegal to put a kitchen knife in your pocket and walk around town, not illegal in your home, etc...



This statement is not entirely true. It is still illegal to carry a concealed dirk or dagger in your own home. There is no private property exception to 12020 PC.

pwall
06-11-2010, 11:51 AM
BUMP!
So as long as one posesses a butterfly knife in their home, but never keeps it on their person, its legal?

I was thinking about ordering one of these.

http://www.weapons-universe.com/Knives/Butterfly_Knives/Skull_Pirate_Butterfly_Knife.shtml

Reading the site it seems they wouldn't have a problem shipping to CA.

Maybe not a good idea though if swat will show up!

yelohamr
06-11-2010, 12:39 PM
I have one with a 5" blade on my night stand.

I once carried it in a sheath, with a bootlace wrapped the length of the handle so it couldn't be closed.

BigDogatPlay
06-11-2010, 12:54 PM
p.s. Balis under 2" are technically legal, but damned if I'm gonna carry one...

Bali's under 2" blade are letter openers and not much more, IMO.

To reiterate... just because something is for sale does not make it legal to possess / carry in a public place. And remember that once you buy it you need to carry it home, presumably, through a whole lot of "public place". Any butterfly knife with a blade more than two inches in length in California + in public = PC 653k violation.

That it isn't enforced very much, like on the sell or offer to sell part, doesn't make it cool either.

bohoki
06-11-2010, 6:43 PM
i got one of the dinky balisongs

http://i43.photobucket.com/albums/e366/bohoki/DCP_8321.jpg

http://i43.photobucket.com/albums/e366/bohoki/DCP_8320.jpg

it is redicoulus but it is kind of fun to flip around

dannyboy
06-11-2010, 6:47 PM
someone probably beat me to it

same laws as switchblades, legal to possess, illegal to carry. No clear law on transportation but I would keep it in the trunk/locked box.

Honestly there's nothing great about them besides the fun of flipping them around. Get a lockblade imo

tiko
06-11-2010, 10:02 PM
knife shop at pier39 in SF sells butterflies...

SF is a sanctuary city, isn't it?

chuckdc
06-12-2010, 11:40 AM
Hey.. wait.. I though butterflies were free!

:rolleyes::rofl2::puke:

voiceoftheright
06-12-2010, 6:59 PM
Agreed, I bought two at the knife store on pier 39 in SF. The guy asked me if I was military or police when I asked if he had any switches, I showed him my Marine Corps ID, and he busted out the vintage Italian stiletto that was like 14 inches from behind the counter. It was $200 bucks, so I passed. You can order any of these knives online and they will ship them to you btw.

lioneaglegriffin
06-12-2010, 11:37 PM
So if I travel in the trunk of someone's car, I can have a switchblade on me?

on person means you too buddy.