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Fixed Blade Sheath Carry: Dangerous??

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Grant Lamontagne:

A little over a decade ago I was told (and I have no idea how true this is) that only hard shelled cases like kydex and plastic sheaths are certified for paratrooper use as a result of troops accidentally stabbing themselves with fixed blades when hitting the ground, especially if a roll was involved.  Whoever told me that also told me about a hunter who had fallen down a hill and had injured himself when his fixed blade poked through the sheath.

I can see this happening if someone isn't careful, or is very unfortunate.  I've seen old knives for sale at flea markets and other places where the blade has poked through the sheath (even thick leather ones) and I admit it is a possibility.  Whether it's akin to walking around with a cocked and loaded .45 in your mouth or not, well that I wouldn't agree with.  It's a bit sensational, although that is a dumb fad I'd actually like to see some gang bangers adopt!  :P

The nice thing about kydex and other plastic type sheaths are that they usually attach to the guard of the knife, meaning that any impact force isn't on the blade through a soft material, it's on a hard shell and transferred through the hilt to the belt or other secure point, meaning you are more likely to have it fall off your belt than intrude on your innards. 

All in all, I'm not certain if it's a significant hazard or not, but I think I would like to err on the side of caution, especially if I was a paratrooper.

Def

SlackOne:

I thought this was why most military knives came with metal or hard plastic sheathes...it would be hard to imagine stabbing yourself through the steel tube of an M-1 bayonet sheath :P

WhichDawg:

the nylon sheaths I have came with a kydex insert inside and the leather ones I have are thick and made well (custom).

I'm sure accidents happened and falling on any pointy object is bad!

but I've never heard of it happening to anyone I know and like stated, just be careful and adjust carry.

Grant Lamontagne:

It often seems to happen to "this guy I know" or "a friend of mine" and so I wonder if it actually has happened or whether it's one of those urban myths.  I think it could happen, but I have yet to see or read about an actual documented case where it has happened.  Mind you, I have occasionally cut myself on a protruding blade with one of those cheap Rambo style knives that poked through it's sheath, but it was never serious, and well, to be blunt, any military that send soldiers out with such shoddy equipment deserves what they get!

Def

Styerman:

FWIW , I think most of the sheaths that I have seen that have been holed , were holed due to a combination of poor resheathing technique , and bad material science ( 3oz leather is not appropriate sheath material for a 6" F/B ) . Welts are a must . I can easily see where you could be badly hurt wearing a cheap sheath forward of the hips . behind the Iliac crest , the resulting perforation would probably only injure vehicle upolstery , or an errant hand that went back to scratch your errant a$$ .

Chris

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