combat knife throwing... I'm not kidding you

Discussion in 'Throwing Knives & Knife Throwing' started by CapitalizedLiving, Aug 7, 2011.

  1. Bo T

    Bo T

    Feb 12, 2011
    When I was young I could hit maybe 60 mph with a baseball without a windup. I might be able to throw 40 mph now but a knife traveling at 60 feet per second with a sharp point will put a real hurt on the target.
  2. Watchful


    Dec 8, 2004

    Most people overestimate how fast things move. A thrusted knife--one you hold in your hand and plunge into a goblin--accelerates slowly and hits about 100% of speed when the arm is extended about 75% of the way. And many of us would be surprised to know that's only about 25-30mph.

    A throwing knife moving at 40 mph obviously can hit a lot harder, as any of us who have had to dig a knife embedded in a wood target will attest!
  3. dougshoe


    Mar 15, 2011
    Wow- youtube videos. LOL
  4. Jester60

    Jester60 Gold Member Gold Member

    May 21, 2011
    I don't remember the guys name or the name of the video, but I saw one many years ago where this guy could throw a wire clothes hanger hard enough to make it stick in plywood. He'd throw so hard that the follow through would cause him to end up almost laying on the ground afterwards.
  5. Blackfeather


    Mar 3, 2010
    I've been throwing for a long time, I'm no professional or anything, and thus it's my own style/way. I've particularly like the Hibben throwers, because of the edge, and always keep them sharp. To me, a pair of decent knives that work for utilitarian needs, defense, and throwing is perfect. That being said, I've been working on Shuriken style throwing for a while, and just getting into Ralph Thorns no spin style. I see how a knife, or about any object, can be thrown in an effective manner. I have thrown Machetes, chop sticks (the hardwood ones), glass shards, and random assortments of metal pieces and tools. It's fun, and you learn quickly how to throw random objects.

    However, I agree with Mr. Thorn and others on having something to throw, but also something to keep on you. Once when a friend and I were doing some light knife on knife sparring, I made the mistake of letting him back me up into a stump. By some miraculous fault, I stripped the knife from his hand as I stumbled and fell back. By the time I hit the ground I could see him reaching for his knife off the ground. For some reason, I didn't bother getting up, I just adjusted my knife grip and threw it, hitting him straight over the heart, point first! Not only did that measly wooden knife stun him for a second, he took the time to look at it before charging me and essentially winning that battle. I wouldn't say it would be the best thing to do while on your back, but had it been real, he likely wouldn't have charged my so fast and I would have escaped. I felt totally ninja.
    DocJD likes this.
  6. Blackfeather


    Mar 3, 2010
    I also want to add that we (being those who enjoy the sport) aren't the first in the modern era of firearms to consider this an option. I remember a quite while back I was researching knife throwing and the knives used, I came across a knife that the Russian air force used. Supposedly you were able to hold it by the sheath and with a swing of the arm it would be released. The pictures seemed like WWII era. And we all know about the shovels. I'm sure there are many espionage agents that know well enough about throwing objects that are either dangerous or in such a manner to make them so. There is an article, written by Mercop from here on the forums, about improvised weapons and the types of damage that they do. Looking at it again I start thinking about more improvised objects that could be thrown.

    Then in the old days, you have the obvious cultures. Australian aboriginals, Native Americans both north and south, African tribes, and even the Europeans with their axes. While many of these were for hunting, or actual wars that meant missing still allows a chance hit, I don't see how they would be any less effective defensively. There was one Japanese swordsman, Miyamoto Musashi, whose father was a well respected martial artist. There was a story in his childhood when his father threw a dagger at him, then a Wakizashi, before he left to live with his uncle. Obviously he learned this skill as well, as later in a duel against someone skilled in the use of the Kusarigama, a chain weapon with a hand sickle on one end, he threw his own Wakizashi into the mans chest. I think I'm going to look for more cases, because I am finding this all too interesting a thought. Sorry about the rant.
    DocJD likes this.
  7. Watchful


    Dec 8, 2004
    Without having seen the photos or the combination in question, it seems that throwing a knife by its sheath is a particularly ineffective method: you don't exactly control the release,and the added length of the sheath would probably add negligible speed.

    Bear in mind that many Soviet-era training methods were outright fakes, intended to prove the superiority of Soviet methods. My hunch is that if this method was at all useful, it would have been adopted around the world. It's the Kalalshnikov principle: when the Soviets did something right, rare as it was, the design wound up everywhere.

    I also doubt that there are many, if any, espionage agents who throw weapons--most are accountants, by trade. Field operatives don't do the cloak and dagger stuff anymore, but blend in and listen, record and report. Anything stronger than that gets some pretty beefy backup.

    But hunting methods generally translate pretty well into military methods--and you're right: a LOT of primative cultures survived for *thousands* of years using simple throwing weapons. Pretty much all of these skills are still with us, too, ready for learning.
    DocJD likes this.
  8. killteamTRS


    Nov 30, 2007
    Glad to see that I'm not the only person out there who didn't use a thrower this time around. I was trowing a Glock Field knife and a Cold Steel kukri.... yes a kukri machete. took a hell of alot of practice, but man was it fun. I wouldnt suggest it to be honest because the glock knife was bent and the kukri had a chuck off the back handle taken out also, but theyre cheap enough to wreck sometimes. The kukri was surprisingly still usable and functional after though
    DocJD likes this.
  9. mercop


    Mar 26, 2002
    I would rather throw a hot cup of coffee in their face than my knife. You need two things, time and opportunity. I don't see you having either in reality. I would much rather throw my RMJ Shrike.- George
  10. Blackfeather


    Mar 3, 2010
    George, you searched your own name to find that post, didn't you? lol, I'd never throw an RMJ Shrike, I'd rather throw the knife. ;)


    Jul 22, 2011
    My mom threw a frying pan at me when I was 15, I scared her walking thru the kitchen door unexpectedly. Crud, she could not figure how to shoot my pellet pistol and threw it at a stray dog one time too, almost forgot about that. Had to aim 2 inches right at 20 feet after that, but she hit the dog and it ran away. Same year even.

    I threw a stoneware coffee mug through a 3/4" MDF wall. That should kill a man if it hit him straight in the face.

    I will put a female softball player up against your knife thrower. Man I tell you I have had some of either of my girls team mates just about knock me of my feet by me not paying attention. Those girls (most by age 12 or 14) can hit a target easily between 40 and 60 feet with a hard and fast throw. Shoot this years 12 year old pitcher is throwing between 45 and 50 mph.

    So yes I do believe any readily throwable object can be used to a good defense, that frying pan stopped me cold 30 years ago. I personally will hang on to my knife as long as there is another good choice that would knock a man off his feet. A thrown object will make one pause, OK maybe not you super trained martial arts, Navy seal types, but the unprepared types. Those of us who tend to think with a prepared survival mind set fall somewhere in between and are likely to be the ones doing the throwing.

    Shoot I've chased off thieves with just a crowbar and it never left my hand. Good story for another time.

  12. mercop


    Mar 26, 2002
    I would go with a dodge ball or a wrench any time.- George
  13. czelea


    May 22, 2011
    ...anything that you could efficiently turn into a projectile (keep that in mind), gives you that much more versatility...should you ever need it. However there's a big difference between throwing an orange, a baseball bat or a knife....common sense has a lot to do with whether a given object would be effective as a projectile.
    I have heard (one too many times) that "you never throw your weapon/knife". Which is odd, considering that the whole point behind the invention of any given firearm/bow/slingshot/etc, is to throw some sort of projectile fast and accurate.
    For whatever reason, here in US the throwing of "things" as means of fighting, is not the most popular subject and most of those who talk about it try to convince people as to why it would not work. I grew up in a third world country on the wrong side of the iron curtain, where any means were used for conflict (other than firearms) day in and day out. I have had my head split open by thrown rocks twice, once by a very heavy crystal ashtray (i'm still surprised that didn't kill me), took a thrown bottle to my kneecap (no real damage there, but he was holding a second one....that made me leave him alone). In retrospect, i got cut once (in three places by what looked like a ring on his finger with some type of spike welded to it and got stabbed once with a piece of glass from a previously broken window. I said all that to say this....most people seem to underestimate the ability of a thrown object as opposed to close range manipulation/swinging of that same object. I fought my way out of both stabbings (the ring thingy barely grazed my skin) but was out cold and scary bloody on the ashtray and deff. out of commission on the rocks.I chose to back out of the bottles after the first one hit me in the leg. Those were times (not the only ones) when i was on the wrong side of a fight/weapon. The retrospect stories, i won't say. I will say i have also thrown my share of...things. Depending on what it is and how well you throw, the damage done will vary. But it will stop the conflict 90% of the time. I walked away from a bottle thrown, because of the next one (or more) coming dwn the pipe. I couldn't walk away from the guy swinging the spike or the glass untill they stopped moving, so i can be sure they don't swing for the jugular next.
    If you come close to me with that knife, i'll do whatever i have to to get myself out of that predicament (be weary of a desperate opponent, especially a wounded one). Though if you make like you'll throw as you stand 10ft away from me, chances are i'll back up from that (unless i can take cover).
    One of the main reasons why i got to love knives as much as i do, is because i can throw them effectively. In my opinion a knife is not a weapon as much as it is a tool. Most stories of fatality or wounds coming from knives didn't come from "knife fights", they came from stabbings where the victim not only was unarmed, but didn't even know what was coming. In an actual fight where your weapon of choice would be the knife, in order for that to qualify as a fight the opponent would have a weapon of his choice. And it is in that case, where you find out that the knife is not necessarily all that it's cracked up to be as a weapon...unless you can throw it...and throw it well:
    1.Me knife, you nothing - that's not a fight, that's a stabbing, it don't count.
    2.Me knife, you rock - i'll throw...before you do
    3.Me knife, you baseball bat - me 3" reach to get to your gut, you 24" to get to my skull....screw it, i'll throw 5-6ft in.
    4.Me knife, you gun - ...come close enough to you to thrust?...i'll be too busy running the opposite direction. If you give me the time, maybe i throw before i run.
    5.Me knife, sword - i'll throw
    6.Me knife, you ax - really?...i'll throw
    7.Me knife, you shovel/pitch fork - i'll throw
    8.Me knife, you bow - i'll throw
    9.Me knife, you...and five of your friends - that's when i'll keep the knife
    Regardless of any stories (you get all kinds), logic would say this. If you're good at manipulating a knife/screwdriver/whatever, stick with that. If you're good at throwing them, stick with that. To each his own, none is's up to you and you're better abilities as opposed to your not so good ones.
    Give Bruce Lee a nunchack and put him in the middle of 10 guys. They're out cold in 1 min. Give me a nunchack and i might as well throw it as somebody cause if i start swinging it goes forhead-nuts-eye socket....and neither one belongs to the opponent.
    As for the main subject of this thread, remember this: it's not "throwing the knife" it's "turning the knife into a projectile"...that should be self explainatory
    DocJD likes this.
  14. southernknifeguy


    Nov 17, 2011
    Wow I just found this forum and I already like it.
    I started throwing knives when I was kid, but last January I got a cheap set of 5.5" throwers from a gun show (got rid of some S&W mags and didnt have much other money than that at the time) and got really into throwing while I was waiting the month and a half for my taxes back. I started with the normal spin technique and that lasted a few months. Then shortly after I opened my business I was told about the zero spin (no spin) technique by a friend. We took the summer, got it pretty much down and I have to say I was very impressed. We found the zero spin technique to be effective out to about 12ft much after that it got dicey but with in that range we could get really impressive penetration. Not to mention the accuracy we got out of it, that was awesome.

    After awhile we got tired of the limited range of the zero spin technique and started toying with a hybrid of the zero spin and normal technique. It ended up being just like the zero spin technique but after about 15ft (depending on the knife) the blade would begin to spin. It is a very slow spin (about 1 rotation per 20ft) but we found that we could get out to almost 30ft with this new hybrid and still keep the same impressive penetration and accuracy.

    I'd recommend giving this technique a shot, just hold the knife same as you would for the zero spin technique but get out to a range that even given the use of the zero spin method the knife ends up going end over end. Then make adjustments to your distance same as you would when using the normal technique and you should be able to dial it in from there. It may take some getting used to, so play with it a bit and if it works for you then it works for you, if not then sorry for wasting your afternoon lol. Enjoy.
  15. Watchful


    Dec 8, 2004
    Welcome, Southernknifeguy, to BF!

    What I enjoy about your post is your specific measurements about distance. I think it's one thing to experiment (and a good thing), but it's much better to analyze your results and put some numbers to them; so great job!
  16. eralphthorn


    Nov 18, 2005
    If you use larger knives the no spin can easily be effective out to 20 feet plus.

    Or, there are people who can throw shuriken style no spin out to about 50 feet with smaller weapons.

    You might also look into the variable-distance half spin or "blade throw" - it sounds like you might already be doing some variation of it.
  17. DaBird


    Jan 3, 2006
    Hello all,
    This is the first time I've posted in the "Throwers" forum ---------- I'd just like to say that I got "good" at throwing bladed weapons/tools by useing a sheet of newspaper -- there has to be a bit of a wind , but I'd release the sheet of paper and try to nail it while blowing across the ground. The thing I liked about this was you almost always had a differant distance and you had to learn to adjust for it.
    I am in the "1/2 & 1/2 camp" on throwing your only weapon if in a fight -- funny thing about fights is that there are almost never two that start/end the same way. It is good to see a adult conversation on throwing without the Rambo BS that it tends to raise.
    I just got a 2"x72" grinder and think I'll try my hand at makeing a few throwing knifes --- I'll have to do a little research on blade steel etc. but I am pumped to try grinding a few out.
    Stay safe -- Bird
  18. Knifethrower721


    Dec 17, 2011
    I have the same video. He showed the basics to rotational throwing and then talked a big game about throwing for self-defense. That is a very BOLD statement to make. To throw effectively in combat you have to meet a lot of criteria such as throwing from multiple distances with the same weapon (which he didn't demonstrate). Do you agree?
  19. Knifethrower721


    Dec 17, 2011
  20. Bigfattyt

    Bigfattyt Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 23, 2007
    The Extreme Knife Throwing Montage was a great watch.

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