Balisong blades, also known as butterfly knives, are some of the best automatic knives for sale. That rather surprising statement comes from a coalition of collectors who are working to dramatically change the perception about automatic knife design. Most people wouldn’t have traditionally considered butterfly knives to be automatic at all. You still have to flip them open without using some sort of built-in mechanism.

Skilled users can open them much faster than commercial grade automatic knives, however. Someone who has practiced enough to learn the right movements can open a butterfly knife with a single gesture, thus making them far more convenient than most other types of blades. Enthusiasts will often dedicate a fair amount of time to practicing this motion, which has given them a certain reputation as the preferred knives of experts.

Unlike many other expert-level knives, collectors of all skill levels can enjoy balisong blades. Though they’re certainly beautiful cultural items that celebrate their unique heritage, butterfly knife designs can take quite a sharp edge. That makes them a practical addition to any bugout bag. Depending on the region you live in, they might also be a great choice for everyday carry. While not every jurisdiction allows people to carry balisong blades with them, they’re quite valuable to those who live in areas that do. Best of all, the lack of an opening mechanism makes them hold up better in situations where they’ll get used all the time.

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