Is The Karambit The Ultimate Folding Pocket Knife For Self Defense?

Could this be the ultimate folding pocket knife for self defense?

The Karambit — Originally from Indonesia (Sumatra and Java), nobody had heard too much about this knife fifteen years ago.  I remember first seeing one back in 1997.  It was made by legendary knife maker Ernest Emerson.  It sold for close to $300.  Now everybody makes them.  Amazon even sells a couple dozen different makes and models as well as instructional videos on how to fight with one.  They’ve become popular to say the least and there’s a very good reason for that.

Strong Enough For A Man, Easy Enough To Use By A Lady With No Formal Training

The specific lady I’m talking about was the wife of a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt instructor.  She had no experience with grappling or fighting on the ground.  He was a land shark.

As a test, he gave her a trainer karambit (a “trainer” is a knife that has it’s sharp edge ground down so it won’t cut).

He outweighed her by over a hundred pounds.  He then did his best to take the knife away from her, but he couldn’t get it away.  Get one for yourself and try it.  A big part of the reason you can’t take it away from someone is because of the hooked beak of the karambit.


Even when he trapped her arm, she still had enough wiggle room (millimeters)  to angle the tip so that it would cut into his wrist, had it been a real knife.

The other big benefit to the shape of the karambit is that the rake across muscle and vein is more difficult to stop the bleeding as compared to a stab wound.  The hooked angle of the karambit creates a ripping cut, rather than just a slice.Now, in all fairness: It’s not easy to take a regular knife away from a dedicated assailant.

And that’s what I’m looking for in a personal self defense weapon: Caveman simple, deadly effective and difficult to disarm.

One Comment
  1. Was that BJJ instructor [edited for privacy]? (He and [edited for privacy] are my instructors.)

    ____ and ____ are friends with Ernie Emerson and train with his excellent Karambits.

    I own one. Highly recommended.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *