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#154774 - 11/10/08 01:52 PM Legality of a spring-assist knife
el_diabl0 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/31/06
Posts: 301
Loc: NE Ohio
I recently got a Gerber FAST draw spring-assisted knife as a gift, and was wondering about the legality of it in Ohio. Anyone know the law on one of these? I can open it faster than most switch blades.

Also, anyone familiar with this model? Gerber FAST draw How is it for EDC?


Edited by el_diabl0 (11/10/08 01:53 PM)
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#154775 - 11/10/08 02:09 PM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: el_diabl0]
Grouch Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/02/08
Posts: 395
Loc: Ohio
Ohio laws are pretty vague when it comes to knives. The Ohio Revised Code has little to say on the matter of possession.

http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/2923.20

Local laws may be more specific and/or restrictive.

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#154778 - 11/10/08 02:40 PM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: ]
Grouch Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/02/08
Posts: 395
Loc: Ohio
It says:

"Manufacture, possess for sale, sell, or furnish to any person other than a law
enforcement agency for authorized use in police work, any brass knuckles, cestus, billy, blackjack, sandbag, switchblade knife, springblade knife, gravity knife, or similar weapon;"

Specifically, possess for sale, sell, or furnish to...

It doesn't really say it's illegal to possess one for personal use.



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#154781 - 11/10/08 03:04 PM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: ]
Grouch Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/02/08
Posts: 395
Loc: Ohio
Ohio is just plain weird sometimes. It's legal to sell fireworks in Ohio but not for use in Ohio ('cept by fire officials or pros). There's a waiver that must be signed stating that they are for use outside of Ohio. Most folks just sign the lie and buy what they want.

Regarding knives, I've been a cop in Ohio for almost 20 years and I've never even checked a knife to see if it was auto-open, let alone bust someone for possessing one. Of course there will always be cops that'll bust their granny for jaywalkin' but I'm not one of them. smile

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#154785 - 11/10/08 03:22 PM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: ]
Grouch Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/02/08
Posts: 395
Loc: Ohio
Originally Posted By: IzzyJG99
Personally the only difference between an assisted/spring/switchblade and a normal folding knife is one thing. The time between them pulling it out and stabbing you right in the buttcheek is a little less. You know what I mean? Lol.

Yup, and even then, it's not all that much faster than the deployment of many folders without the assist.

Quote:
I think el diablo might as well carry it. I honestly have not ever run into a cop that's checked to see where I was wearing my knife. But then again the two times a cop has ever had to pat me down I said "I have a folding knife in my front pocket." and they seem to just pass over it and act as if it's not there.

I agree. He should be okay as long as he doesn't give the cops a reason to give him more than casual scrutiny.

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#154803 - 11/10/08 04:30 PM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: Grouch]
el_diabl0 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/31/06
Posts: 301
Loc: NE Ohio
Thanks for the replies. It was purchased for me online/out of state.

What's worse is that I have a concealed handgun license, but I'm afraid of getting thrown in jail for a little pocket knife, lol. The Beretta 96d I carry is not a problem!
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#154804 - 11/10/08 04:35 PM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: Grouch]
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
Is everyone aware of Doug's other effort Kniferights.org?

There are laws on the books everywhere, so poorly written and thought out they cry for a test case. If you don't feel like being one, a few thoughts:

Demeaner is everything. In a age of slobwear, a man with a tie and longsleeved, pressed shirt is going to be treated differently than the guy in a Jimmy Buffet lookalike contest.
If you are searched, that whistle, sparklite box and flashlight establish an association of purpose; ie I am preparing to survive, not burgle the hardware store.

Does this work? I was in a steakhouse that provided liability free knives; roundnosed and DULL. Without thinking, I pulled out my Ritter, opened it onehanded and proceeded to eat. My companions sort of froze, as two policemen in the opposite booth were looking at me. Then one said " somebody is thinking" and they both pulled out their Spydercos and started cutting.


Edited by Chris Kavanaugh (11/10/08 04:38 PM)

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#154815 - 11/10/08 06:07 PM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: Chris Kavanaugh]
Grouch Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/02/08
Posts: 395
Loc: Ohio
Originally Posted By: Chris Kavanaugh
Demeaner is everything. In a age of slobwear, a man with a tie and longsleeved, pressed shirt is going to be treated differently than the guy in a Jimmy Buffet lookalike contest.

I concur. Right or wrong, we make snap judgements based on the information that's readily available. If appearance is all we've got to go on, the neat looking guy will draw much less scrutiny than a gang-banger wannabe with his underwear and butt-crack showing (no offense to plumbers).

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#154875 - 11/11/08 03:52 AM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: Grouch]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
I've never been quite sure what the supposed advantage of a 'spring assisted' knife is supposed to be. IMO most every type of folder worth having has a 'opening hole' or notch that allows it to be opened single handed about as fast as anyone could want. If you need it faster than that use a fixed blade.

One of the reasons I like the Leatherman Wave is that both main blades, differentiated by the notches ground into the back of the serrated blade, have these holes and are quite easy to get out of their holster and open in one smooth move. I always know which blade I'm flicking open because I always store the knife in the same orientation within the holster.

The Leatherman has two advantages that tend to avoid legal conflicts. First, is that it is automatically seen as more of a tool and less of a weapon. Being able to honestly state that I use it in my job only reinforces this point. Second, it has no spring action in blade opening.

Spring action of virtually any kind starts brings to mind the switchblades from the 50s street punk movies. Butterfly knives have similar bad press from the 70s low-budget martial arts movies.

Sure, people can [censored] and moan about how stupid knife laws are but anything short of objections forceful enough to actually change the law you have to deal with them. Get over it. Moderate your equipment selections and presentation to avoid scaring people and catching the eye of the law and you will likely never have a problem. Pretty much common sense and common courtesy.

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#154881 - 11/11/08 04:59 AM Re: Legality of a spring-assist knife [Re: Art_in_FL]
haertig Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/13/05
Posts: 2270
Loc: Colorado
For me, regular folders are faster to open that those assisted ones. I've handled a few assist knives and didn't like any of them. By the time I've maneuvered them into a position in my hand where I feel safe flicking that assist release, I could have had a regular folder already open and in use. And some of them have safeties on them so they don't accidentally open in your pocket. While that's a good thing, it just slows down the knife even further when you have to mess with the safety. Add to all this the "Is it legal?" question. Whether it is or is isn't, you could still be in for a hassle from local law enforcement. I consider assisted opening knives as a solution in search of a problem, and a poor solution at that. Just my opinion, of course.

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