View Full Version : Armor Piercing

05-13-2003, 12:00 AM
Every time I look at ads featuring tanto style blades, they always seem to ad armor piercing to its list of qualities. Are they trying to say that it can slice thru steel like depleted uranium or is this just another case of creative advertising? If they are talking about a Kevlar vest, can't any knife with a point pierce thru?

05-13-2003, 03:36 AM
Of course not. Knives that cut through steel plates and cables and stay factory sharp can be seen only in movies <img src="wink.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle border=0>
Yet... the shape of the tanto blade is indeed designed with the piercing purpose in mind, just like the samurai swords.
One more thing, the tantos offered by Spyderco (BL fixed and folder) have a particular shape (&quot;hamaguri&quot; or &quot;apple seed&quot; tip) that allows penetration with a reduced risk of breaking the tip of the knife.

<a href="http://users.pcnet.ro/dialex"><font color=blue>(my page)</font></a>

05-13-2003, 05:37 AM
I think they mean body armor. That was Cold Steel's big thing when they first came out w/their Tanto.

Tantos have a slight advantage because of the tip shape. The very tip is in line w/the spine to support it when it pierces. Then it's backed by the rest of the tip which slices like a guillotine(sp?). Another good armor piercer was the Khyber knife. This knife had a fine point and a 'T'-shaped spine to reinforce it. Went into chainmail real well.

Alot of the tanto demos you see are done on car hoods. Car hoods are not that thick. A screwdriver will punch through one easy. But you're not going to put a tanto through a properly hardened vehicle,much less anything w/military grade protection.

Edited by - dynaryder on 5/13/2003 5:38:48 AM

05-23-2003, 03:59 PM
I'm a corrections officer, and have been issued a puncture/stab resistant vest by Second Chance.

There was much debate among my coworkers as to whether these vests would stop a stab by a knife.

We've had several employees stabbed/cut in the past (one killed) and several dozen inmates injured/killed with knives.

In short, I took my Cold Steel Mini Tanto and stabbed it right through my vest. It penetrated like a hot knife through butter. So much for protection.

Sword and Shield
05-23-2003, 05:05 PM
Howdy Jim! Welcome to <img src="spyder.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle border=0>Land! <img src="smile.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle border=0>

Any sharp knife or pointed object can penetrate a vest. Bullets cannot as they press on the junctions of 8 or 10 fibers. which catch it like the weave on a tennis racquet.

A knife, on the other hand, can either go between the fibers entirely or focus on one or two fibers. One or two Kevlar fibers are no match for a knife blade.

By the time you read this, you'll have already read it.

05-23-2003, 06:49 PM
The only thing you'll get close to &quot;stab-proof&quot; is a very fine chain mail... 1/8&quot; links, triple layer... will move like fabric, but weigh like a ton of bricks.

or go for solid steel plates properly hardened, and not be able to move.

My Word, My Honour, is my Life.

05-24-2003, 01:14 AM

I belive it is creative advertising and a lack of understanding what kind of armor was oiriginally being pierced.

Although there were other forms of armor piercing arms, like the khyber mentioned by Dynaryder, the tanto originated in Japan where traditional Japanese armor was constructed from laquered bamboo, leather, cloth and metal. Japanese armor was much lighter, and provided for ease of movement during hand to hand combat. The chest plate or yoroi was usually one piece of iron while the arms and neck were composed of small pieces of metal laced together. The Japanesae armor was effective against tradional swords. The tanto tipped blade was more effective against this type of armor.

&lt;font color=&quot;BLUE&quot;&gt;&quot;A hole-less knife is soul-less knife is a whole less knife&quot; - Javanese proverb&quot; &lt;/font&gt;

Edited by - java on 5/24/2003 1:15:38 AM

Knife Knut
05-25-2003, 11:04 AM
The reason for this is that steel was much rarer in Japan than the West.

Knife Knut on a shoestring budget.

05-25-2003, 02:18 PM
Knife Knut,

The japanese yoroi was traditionally iron. Although not known for having an abundance of natural resources, the raw materials for steel, primarily iron and carbon, were available for those who could afford the process - like the shoguns and their samurai. Armor was keep light and &quot;ergonomic&quot; due to the weapons encountered untill the arrival of the Portuguese and their muskets. At this time the thickness of the yoroi increased and stronger metals began to be used in their armor.

<font color="BLUE">"A hole-less knife is soul-less knife is a whole less knife" - <i>Javanese proverb"</i><font>

05-26-2003, 01:52 PM
Depending how the vest is mounted the test may have been &quot;unfair&quot;. If you take a vest strap it to a tree and shoot it the round will go through, as the body needs to be there to absorb the trauma. With a solid object there a round/ knife will go through. We had a &quot;save&quot; with a edged weapon on a Second Chance vest. Give them a call.

As for armour piercing tanto I believe the point was armor piercing back in the day... when it was designed but that was before kevlar. Come to think of it it was before my sig which but thats another story.

05-26-2003, 08:24 PM
Any sharp knife or pointed object can penetrate a vest&gt;&gt;&gt;

Actually, our vests are not rated for ballistic protection, but rather for stab/slashes.

Someone else mentioned that the background material is relavent, ie. a tree or something hard.

When I tested my knife, I had lain it on my wooden deck, which may have helped the blade go through.

Knife Knut
05-27-2003, 10:55 AM
Looking at
What model is it?

does your &quot;partner&quot; have a vest?

Knife Knut on a shoestring budget.

05-31-2003, 12:53 AM
Actually some of the newer models use ceramic plates, which in theory should add a level of protection in stabbing injuries Kevlar isn't capable of, some even claim to stop HP rifle fire.
S&amp;S was correct that the fibers catch the bullets from a handgun, the only thing I can add is it's due to the spin/rotation of the round getting wound up in the density of the fibers.
I'd get my Captian to check out some of the ceramic vests out now reguarding knife penetration.

05-31-2003, 10:12 AM
Hmm... the sister of a friend of mine works as a bouncer in a club, and they are obliged to where combi-vests (as in both bullet and knife proof). Last year she got an upgrade and got to keep her old vest, so naturaly we were curious enough to try the old one out. Not a single blade got through. No Spyderco, no Strider. It simply stopped them cold. Perhaps if we'd try and 'saw' through, this might have worked, but straight puncturing failed every time and from every angle, front, back and sides. The downside of these vests is that, contrary to bullet proof vests, these are at least 1.5&quot; thick. Still, they do seem to work..