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My second attempts at CAD Balisongs (Warning, Pic Heavy)

Bravo One-Eight Mar 17, 2013

  1. Bravo One-Eight

    Bravo One-Eight Little member

    Hey guys! Wow, I'm glad to see so much interest in the design!

    Thank you! I can switch around the Zen Pins on the blade and make the cuts smaller for them next run. I'll get a new blade started tonight, and when I have some money and get serious, I would definitely start a waiting list thread, that's a great idea.

    Thanks! I'll have to see about it, I don't know who could make the blade and I may have to outsource the production to a local machine shop, I don't have a knee mill. But I would love to make these and I'll keep the forums posted!

    Oh. Er, whoops... not sure what I was thinking when I wrote that down now that I'm more awake. Good point, I think you're right, plain bearing bronze should be a bit better than silver-coated ones. I think Jewel or Zirconia bearings would be nice but Zirconia is brittle, it doesn't like to take shock.

    I will switch the bushing specification back to bronze.

    Ah, don't worry, any feedback will help and I can transfer it forward toward the next iteration.

    Thank you, I think what I can try to do is to remove the cutouts and replace them with slots for the zen pins so the cutouts don't pinch. If I'm lucky, I'll be able to find a small enough stainless steel precision extension spring, or even better, a 90-degree torsion spring. I think the F-3 Mk. III would be relatively simple to mod up with a spring latch, the SR-71, I'll have to work on it.

    Out of curiosity, why is a larger spacer considered more desirable?

    That'd be great! I use Unigraphics NX to do all my designs, but I have an old copy of Inventor 2010 that I use to render. My office uses 2013, so I should be covered for anything. Which version do you use?

    I can switch out the Weehawk blade, I have some ideas for Recurve profiles and Bowies. Or I can modify the Weehawk. If I actually get to making any of these, unfortunately, the only thing I would be able to make them with would be a butterknife, a bottle tab, or maybe something a little fancier like a comb. It really sucks, I know, but I don't want to get busted.

    What I will likely do, if I were to somehow create these, would be to sell these as part kits including the handles and either a swingsafe 'trainer' blade with holes in it so it can't be mistaken for a real one, or outsource the production of the actual sharpened blades to somebody else in the USA and tell him to ship directly to another buyer in the USA, then require final assembly to be done by the customer. For this reason, I designed the blade to use extra thick washers - the washers actually form an interference fit and must be sanded down to form a fit, which should help take up any variance.

    If I did it that way, the actual blade never enters the country and I don't end up going to an all-expenses-paid three-year vacation at the big house with a 400-pound roommate named Ben Dover.

    Thank you very much man, much appreciated! I'm not actually an engineer yet, I'm just a designer. I'm going to be going for my engineering degree soon though.

    I like the Benchmade Model 62 and the Benchmade Model 42 very much because of their iconic shape and design, but I had a look at the Benchmade Model 62's specs on the internet when it came out and I felt that Benchmade was taking shortcuts to save on production costs. One of the things that really bugs me about is that it doesn't have Titanium handles, and it's got a Tee-Latch that's not gated. So I wanted to design something that would be very similar, but would have the features that I wanted it to.

    So I suppose this is the reverse of a CIC - Cheap Imported Copy? Yeah it's derivative, but I am hoping to improve what came before and spare no expense in doing it.

    At the moment, I have to design a new blade, but when I get it done I'll post a diagram, a picture would be much easier to convey the information.

    I'm cool with it; since I have never held a real Balisong Knife before (only a cheap Balitrainer with no edge and just the barest minumum of features), I tried to design these based off something I knew for certain was popular, proven, and worked. So, naturally, it is more than a little bit derivative. Because the Benchmade Model 42 is no longer produced today, I wanted to produce something that would be very similar to it.

    The tang cutouts, admittedly, were a bit of a shortcut, I am going to have to either extensively modify the blade or design a new one, I'm working on this one now.

    Hey, thanks, and sure, I'll send you a private message or an email. I'm actually a little backlogged at the moment, but once I get some spare time I'll be down for it. I currently have a couple other designs on the go, both for work and play.

    Thanks man, me too! I'm very excited and while I've got lots of energy and I can put ideas down on paper easily, I don't have much experience. So that's why I came here. Mr. Raoul Duke from Blade Forums sent me, I'm trying to get ahold of him.

    Thank you. It's definitely doable, but something concerns me with using tangins: I worry that as the tang pins wore with repeated use, it would be difficult to replace them, especially when the tang cups in the much softer Titanium begin to get peened out and the blade develops play. I felt that Zen Pins were the best way to go in this situation, because they could be easily repaired by someone with no special tools. This way, the wearing parts of the knife are easily replaceable.

    I'll try to do one with tangpins though, I'll see about it in the next version.

    Thanks! I've had lots of experience with it and I enjoy using it. I'd have to say the important thing about learning to get proficient with it is to always force yourself to go out of your way to just try out as many different functions as you can click your way through, and just see what they do. A lot of it is experimentation.

    Since I haven't actually handled a balisong before (they're not legal where I live), rather than taking a blind stab in the dark and hoping that that it got a lucky strike, I felt it would be more efficient to start with something known to be proven and reliable and working on improving that incrementally over different iterations.

    Thank you. I'll have to work out a better looking logo!

    Thanks! I use Siemens PLM NX to do the modelling because it has better features for modelling and parametrics, but for the rendering, I use Autodesk Inventor, it produces far nicer results.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 18, 2013
  2. Icceal555

    Icceal555 Huge member

    Bigger spacers provide better balance and momentum for flipping. Large ti block spacers seem to be the most popular option.

    Approx. Imperial conversion for the yankees :bwah::

    Tentative Specifications
    Specifications are subject to change
    Blade Length: 4.9 in
    Overall Length: 11.8 in
    Approximate Mass: 7.76 Ounces (SR-71), 7.58 Ounces (Mark III)
    Construction: Channel (SR-71), Sandwich (Mark III)
    Point of Balance When Extended: ~3 inches From behind start of edge fillet (SR-71), 2.95 inches From behind start of edge fillet (Mark III)
    Material Specifications: (SR-71)
    Blade: Crucible Steel S90V Stainless Steel. Edge hardness to be within 60-62 Hardness Rockwell C. Blade to be Shotpeened to MIL-S-13165C.
    Handles: 11V-13Cr-3Al Titanium Alloy, Solution Treated and Aged at 932 Degrees Fahrenheit; surface condition to be 520-560 Knoop Hardness prior to the application of coatings or anodization; material shall be certified to MIL-T-9046 Type IV B-1.
    Hardware: A286 Superalloy, Heat Treated at 1652 Degrees Fahrenheit, oil quenched & stress relieved.
    Bushings: Bronze. Exact composition to be determined.
    Latch: Same as Handle.

    Material Specifications: (Mark III, or SR-71 if the above is unavailable)
    Blade: D2 Tool Steel, Edge hardness to be within 60-62 Hardness Rockwell C.
    Handles: 6Al-4V Titanium Alloy.
    Hardware: 416 Stainless Steel, Hardened. Substitute with A286 if available.
    Bushings: C932/SAE 660 Bearing Bronze, Substitute with C655 Silicon Bronze if unavailable.
    Latch: 316 Stainless Steel, Annealed.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 18, 2013
  3. laughingbuddha

    laughingbuddha JDBA4L JDBA Official Member

    Yup! bigger spacers = more momentum with the swing.

    I can't understand why it would weigh as much as 7.5oz... thats a shit ton more than the BM62 (6.3oz) which has ss handles. I can tell you now that you won't garner much interest in the flipping community until you get the weight down.

    IMO you're asking for trouble if you haven't actually held/flipped/used some decent Bali's to get an idea of whats what.
  4. Mystik

    Mystik That's no ordinary rabbit! JDBA Official Member

    Thanks for the conversions, Icceal :thumbsup:

    You have been promoted to "Honorary 'MURICAN currently living in Canada" for the rest of the week.

    Larger spacers usually do provide better balance for most balisongs. It's not always applicable though, since it depends on how large and heavy your balisong is in the first place.

    Personally, I'm more of a channel balisong purist. In terms of enjoyment, nothing beats having the old school feel and sound. I prefer my channel balisongs to have a single tang pin and a tang kicker, just the way Jody Samson intended. :manganr:
  5. bladeboy

    bladeboy Huge member

    Make them!!! Id buy 3
  6. Icceal555

    Icceal555 Huge member

    Capitan's Log 3/19/2013:

    I have been stranded in this strange land for far too long. My brain has been numbed by the cold, and, among other things, it's been making me write like Will Shatner. I am surrounded by a strange people, they keep apologizing for things that were my fault, and some of them believe they are french, although they sound like they're trying to speak Gallic with bronchitis. They keep offering me taffy made of some demented form of honey that they say came from a tree, but this is likely one of their own hypothermic delusions. I fear that if I cannot escape soon, I may be trapped here forever.

    Sorry, I couldn't resist. :bwah:

    Onto the topic at hand, I think that these designs would be better suited for heavy use, rather than flipping. Maybe you could keep the SR-71 roughly the same, as a user, and change the design of the MKIII based on input from people like laughingbuddha and loosey, as a midtech performance flipper. This way, you could stay true to your design, and make what Silly Willy's Orion was supposed to be, and at the same time keep the flippers happy and build a reputation. Just a thought.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 19, 2013
    desmodus likes this.
  7. EOD13

    EOD13 Balisong Addict JDBA Official Member

    If you've never held a balisong before, instead of ripping off BM's design why don't you penny up and purchase one so you can see what it's all about instead of making something you're clueless about. Yeah I might sound harsh but you really have no idea what you're getting yourself into if you don't even know what a balisong feels like
  8. bladeboy

    bladeboy Huge member

    you're right, you can't make a good balisong unless you know what it feels like.
  9. Shlomo

    Shlomo Little member

    I really like your design but try to make it lighter.
  10. Mystik

    Mystik That's no ordinary rabbit! JDBA Official Member


    Haha! That's pretty neat. You also forgot about the strange culinary dish where they put meat juices and curd cow milk over some fried potato sticks. I love me some of that right about now... too bad they don't have any around here.
  11. Bravo One-Eight

    Bravo One-Eight Little member

    Okay, I'm addressing one issue at a time. First off, the grooves for the Zenpins has been updated:


    Hmmm, I see what you mean; I'll probably see if I can find a Benchmade Model 62 Trainer - I rather like Benchmade's designs because they manage to be simple, functional, and elegant - although I've been hard pressed to find even cheap trainers. From what I understand, Balisong trainers aren't illegal up here, but the CBSA's anonymous and unaccountable bureaucrats probably don't know the difference. I order a lot of things from the states and I don't fancy having every parcel I order held for weeks while they search it and desperately try to figure out how to best describe to a judge in graphic detail of how a package of T-shirts with silly slogans on them could be used to blow up the moon.

    It looks like most of the weight in the SR-71 and the Mark III comes from just how beefy the handles and hardware is. I did some surfing around on BladeHQ: Microtech's Tachyon II has handle sections that are .115" thick and they have standoffs instead of spacers. By comparison, the Mark III's handle sections are 3/16" thick and a fair bit longer.

    So next on the list will be reducing the blade size to around 4" and reducing the handle width to around 1/8", and also to reduce the distance from the edge to the back of the blade to make it a little bit slimmer. I'm pretty sure I could get the Mark III under 5 oz very easily doing just that.

    From now on I'll use Imperial on this forum. I design most of my things in metric from sheer force of habit, but that can be changed easily.

    I would definitely go for keeping the SR-71 as the 'heavy use' blade and making the Mark III the top performer. I'll get started on that right now. I love channel balisongs too.

    Thanks! I'll get to workin' on it.

    Sure, thanks and can do. The way it's shaping up it looks like I'm going to have to reduce the size of the Mark III's blade (and its handles) by one inch and thin the handles out by about 1/16" to trim the fat off them.

    I'll be changing the shape of the blade as well, and probably the hole patterns as well. If I could get these cut by water jet, I will do triangles instead to make them different. But for now, I want to try to keep the costs down.

    Thanks, I can reduce the thickness and the size, I'll post the next iteration when I'm done.

    I put Barbecued Pulled Pork on mine. I like to call it "CanAm" because it combines the best food of both worlds.

    So! Next on the to do list...

    1. Acquire a good-quality balisong trainer (looking for either a Benchmade Model 62T, or Bradley Kimura Style Trainer)
    2. Reduce the thickness of the F-3 Mark III's handle sections to 1/8" or slimmer, not to go below .100".
    3. Shorten the blade from 4.9" to 4", not to go below 3.75". Adjust handles to fit.
    4. Increase the length of the spacers from .5" to .75".
    5. Adjust the hardware to fit.
    6. Change the blade style to fit the new handles and for a more original look.
    7. Change the handle detailing and patterning to something more original.
    8. Redesign latch with a 'hold open' spring latch.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2013
    sawjaws likes this.
  12. Icceal555

    Icceal555 Huge member

    This project is starting to look very promising. It's refreshing to have someone open to criticism and suggestions. Will Moon and Darrel Ralph did the opposite and left an ugly scar on the balisong market. Shawn Greacen of Balibalistic is making some of the best custom balis since the Samson days from the great white north. He could probably give you some good advise.
  13. laughingbuddha

    laughingbuddha JDBA4L JDBA Official Member

    FWIW I prefer the metric system :thumbsup:

    I can only relate to the imperial system for how much a Bali or a Baby weighs... otherwise I got no clue what you're on about :bwah:
  14. InfinityShade

    InfinityShade Level: True Devil

    Take a look at how thick the 42 is. The 42 is perfect in my opinion. Its rounded, its not too thick not to thin. Not too long not to short. You want the right combination of thickness and length. I'd suggest trying a design thats SS liners and G10 scales. Thats whats going to cost the least and perhaps get a a design on the same level of the 42 if you can find the balance. I've wanted to to see thin casts of SS with G10 scales for awhile. Don't worry about the handle hole design so much. Just get the functionality then go with the ascetics. (Inventory 09 and 10)

    Also, you could try outsourcing your blade making to another person. Try talking to some custom blade makers?
  15. tx101

    tx101 Stuck in the middle with you JDBA Official Member

    Sell the design to the Chinese (Enlan or Bee) and we can all buy
    them for $20 :bwah:
  16. Looseyfur

    Looseyfur OG Flipper JDBA Official Member Knife Maker or Craftsman

    Correct me if I am wrong but a year or more ago you put this very same project out to be appraised by the community, and it garnered similar feedback.

    In all that time you've not handled a decent balisong? Taken one apart? Mocked up one in foamcore to see if your design even works, or has collisions? Paid to prototype?

    Got feedback on said prototype? Well at least it wont cut you closed... being channel and all. Are these small batch customs? Because making a production value balisong is Canada is its own set of challenges, akin to jumping through a hoop on fire 35 feet in the air, with a jacket soaked in gasoline.

    You can do it, yeah its still a 62 clone really but meh theres sure a greedy market for channel balisongs so if you can sort it out im sure you can move a few just be careful youll end up in jail getting butt-stuffed by some guy with poutine breath.

    best of luck

    SpydercoLover likes this.
  17. Palethius

    Palethius Customizer Knife Maker or Craftsman

    ***I think I wanna make a semi automatic pistol. I'm gonna make a design and see what you guys think. By the way, I've never even shot a gun... let alone taken one apart to see how everything works. I really want to cash in on this pistol craze going on now. Oh.. and all my post are to see if you guys like it and want to buy my product that hasn't even had a prototype made. Also, I haven't shown any proof that I can make a gun yet. Who's interested? I'm going to town.***

    Do you see how this sounds? Kinda ridiculous if you ask me. It sounds like Will Moon when he was strutting his shit around here. Asking for info on what people would buy... and then proceeded to act like Will Moon.

    If you don't know what you are doing... don't do it until you have LEARNED HOW TO DO IT PROPERLY. And DEFINITELY don't try to sell shit before you have anything to show. I am not trying to discourage you either, but look at how this looks. Maybe you should show some stuff you have made for some credibility. This community will eat you alive if you are not careful. Besides, anyone can "design" a balisong. Hell, I have some Solidwork models I have made. That don't mean SHIT until there is a tangible item that can be held.

    Also, you do live in the land O' Canadia. That's a tough place to do what you are trying to do...

    DON'T try to cash in on balisong people. It's rude.
  18. Linos

    Linos baliholickydexbender JDBA Official Member Knife Maker or Craftsman

    leave him along guys he can do it ... making a balisong is easy..i just sold one i`ve made on Grailist for 1K :thumbsup::
    SlightChance likes this.
  19. Looseyfur

    Looseyfur OG Flipper JDBA Official Member Knife Maker or Craftsman

    Ill take it. PM incomming.
  20. Glenn

    Glenn Sol Invictus Knife Maker or Craftsman

    Probably sharper then a Will Moon Orion .


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