The Role of the Victorinox Bird’s Beak Fruit Paring Knife as a Self Defense Tool

| August 5, 2016 | 3 Comments

I became aware of the Victorinox “Bird’s Beak” fruit paring knife as a defense tool thanks to Ed’s Manifesto. I strongly suggest you follow him on Facebook.

The benefits of the Victorinox (and similar blades) are:

  • Inexpensive
  • Found just about everywhere
  • Can be used in public without drawing a lot of attention
  • Can be disposed of, if necessary
  • Has a short enough blade to comply with most fixed blade carry laws (please check your city and state laws)
  • Will perform slightly better at slashing / ripping than a similarly-sized straight blade

I flew in and out of California for a few years for work. It sucked leaving my gun and knives at home. Had I known about this “disposable-ish” knife concept, I would have bought one of these and kept it at my desk in Cali — or just ditched it after every trip.

My wife and I go out for walks frequently. I take along a piece of fruit. We pass many neighbors on our route, and no one bats an eye when I cut a peach with a kitchen knife.

If I used my KABAR TDI knife, or one of my old ZT 350 folders … welllllllll. Who knows.

This knife is not meant to replace your purpose-built self defense knives. It fills a very specific niche, and a very specific use case.

Our friend Greg Ellifritz has an excellent post on how he stays armed when he travels, especially overseas.

The Victorinox is preferred because its tang — the metal part of the knife — extends farther down into the plastic handle than other similarly-shaped knives. This increases its durability, although the blade of the Victorinox is so thin I am more concerned about the tip snapping in half more than I am the grip failing under aggressive use.

Have you considered a paring knife or similar for “best you can do” self-defense?

About the Author:

Short Barrel Shepherd Short Barrel Shepherd is a regular guy and works to make Web sites and mobile apps easier for people to use. He spends his free time attending fight-focused firearm, knife, and combatives training, motorcycling, writing, and playing games. His daily carry is a Glock 19 pistol and an AR15 .300 Blackout pistol in a backpack.
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3 Comments on "The Role of the Victorinox Bird’s Beak Fruit Paring Knife as a Self Defense Tool"

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  1. Tracy says:

    Good article and advice. I have done this in the past when in non-permissive areas.
    The only thing I suggest is finding a birds beak paring knife with a long tang and a riveted handle. The two I currently have are Wusthof made in Solingen, Germany. Only about a dollar more in price, but I feel the steel is a bit better.
    JMHO

  2. blake g says:

    I’ve been doing this for a lot of years, though not always with the birds beak paring knife. When I fly I usually hit an airport shop or one of the variety of Dollar Store places and buy a paring knife and some duct tape. Two minutes with the plastic the knife usually comes in and some tape and you have a functional pocket sheath. I’ve ditched these in airport trash cans all over North America upon departure. Hot tip – I carry a 4″ DMT coarse pocket stone I my carry one to give them a toothier edge as some can be dismal when you ge them…

  3. blake g says:

    …and Ed’s Manifesto ROCKS!!

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