The balisong, or "butterfly knife, is a type of switchblade knife from the Philippines. Blade is carried enclosed between the two handles. By twisting and flicking the wrist, the blade is brought outside the handles and the two handles are brought back together forming a grip for the blade. Can be dangerous when used by a person skilled in its use, but it not effective as a fighting knife: has no hilt, joint is weak (more expensive ones have stronger hinges), single edged (some are double edged), handles too long so end of handles that protrude from fist may be grabbed (although the end may also used as a weapon), requires skill to operate, has a drop point blade, handles too smooth and small for a good grip, and there is no way to know which way a single edge blade is facing by using feel of the grip (although, on you weapon, if you know which way the blade faces in respect to the handle, you can know which way the edge is facing).
The balisong is easily recognized by many is easily hidden. It can be palmed very easily and quickly snapped open. It is flashy by appearance, and its flashy opening acts as a warning. The open and close routine sounds dangerous and makes the user look competent. There is also the added benefit of your opponent not knowing where the blade is. With one balisong in each hand, and with alternating open and close routines, your opponent does not know which hand has the blade at any point in time.
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