Best Butterfly Knives: Slice and Flip with Finesse

In the world of edged tools, few items balance functionality and artistry as seamlessly as butterfly knives. These unique folding knives, also known as balisongs, have captured the fascination of knife enthusiasts, martial artists, and collectors alike. 

The mesmerizing dance of a well-executed flip is only matched by the practicality of a versatile blade. Look no further if you’re seeking the perfect blend of form and function. In this article, we delve into the best butterfly knives to give you a guide to the best options available.

What are Butterfly Knives?

A butterfly knife, also referred to as a balisong or fan knife, stands as a unique and captivating folding pocketknife originating from the Philippines

Its intriguing design revolves around two handles that counter-rotate around a central tang, creating a symphony of motion that conceals the blade within specialized grooves when closed. 

A distinctive latch mechanism, often found on the handle facing the blade’s edge, secures the handles together, completing the intricate structure.

Historically, the balisong found favor among Filipinos, especially in the Tagalog region, as a versatile tool for self-defense and everyday tasks. It also doubled as a straight razor, serving as a grooming tool before conventional razors became prevalent. The dexterity of a skilled user enables them to swiftly deploy the blade with a single hand, showcasing the knife’s practicality.

Beyond its utilitarian attributes, the balisong has evolved into an art form. Skilled practitioners engage in captivating manipulations known as “flipping,” transforming the knife’s movements into an artful dance. The mesmerizing twirls and spins reflect both amusement and creativity.

To facilitate safe practice, “trainer” versions of the balisong have been developed. These specialized knives lack a sharpened edge, allowing enthusiasts to master the flips and tricks without the risk of injury. 

Whether wielded for its historical significance, practicality, or artistic flair, the butterfly knife remains a remarkable blend of form and function that continues to captivate aficionados around the world.

The Best Butterfly Knives

Kershaw Lucha Balisong Butterfly Knife


  • Smooth Operation: The Kershaw Lucha Balisong Butterfly Knife is built on the foundation of Kershaw’s expertise in crafting fast and smooth operating folders, ensuring effortless and fluid handling.
  • High-Quality Construction: Crafted with stainless steel handles featuring internal stop pins and a latch lock, the Lucha promises durability and precision in its design.
  • Premium Blade: The Sandvik 14C28N steel blade delivers exceptional cutting performance and edge retention, making it a reliable tool for various cutting tasks.
  • Smooth Movement: Equipped with KVT ball-bearing pivots, the knife guarantees seamless movement and eliminates blade play, enhancing user experience with every flip and maneuver.
  • Versatile Design: With a sleek clip-point blade style, a stonewash finish, and a user-friendly wave opener, the Lucha is not only a functional tool but also a stylish addition to any collection.

Bradley Kimura Butterfly Balisong Knife


  • Comfortable Flipping: The Bradley Kimura Butterfly Balisong Knife boasts textured G-10 handle scales and stainless steel liners, providing a comfortable weight and grip for enjoyable flipping maneuvers.
  • Recreational Excellence: Designed with recreational users in mind, this knife is perfect for those who enjoy practicing knife tricks and tricks of the trade.
  • Durable Blade: The knife features a 154CM stainless steel blade with a spear point design, offering durability and precision for various cutting tasks.
  • Easy Everyday Carry: With an overall length of 8.88 inches and a weight of 5.98 oz., the Kimura is versatile for everyday carry, ensuring you’re ready for any cutting or flipping occasion.
  • Quality Craftsmanship: Crafted in the USA, this butterfly knife showcases superior craftsmanship, making it a reliable tool for both EDC and recreational use.

Benchmade Knives: 85 Billet Titanium Balisong


  • Premium Material: Crafted from a single piece of billet titanium, the Benchmade 85 Billet Titanium Balisong showcases exceptional durability and sleek aesthetics.
  • Smooth Rotation: Equipped with stainless steel ball-bearing pivots, this butterfly knife ensures seamless and fluid rotation, enhancing its overall performance and usability.
  • Precision Blade: The drop point CPM-S30V blade, measuring 4.4 inches, is designed for versatility and longevity. Its through-hole milled fuller adds both style and functionality.
  • Secure Locking: The magnetic latch-lock mechanism provides easy and secure handling, allowing for effortless opening and closing of the knife, ensuring user safety and convenience.
  • Portable and Protective: With an overall length of 10 inches and a closed length of 5.5 inches, along with a weight of 5.29 ounces, this knife is lightweight and easily transportable. It comes with a black nylon carry pouch for added protection during storage and transport.

Bear & Son Balisong


  • High-Quality Craftsmanship: The BEAR & SON Cocobolo Balisong boasts impeccable craftsmanship with a genuine cocobolo wood handle and nickel silver bolsters, reflecting attention to detail and quality in every aspect.
  • Durable Blade: The 3.5″ black powder-coated 440 stainless steel clip-point blade offers durability and corrosion resistance, ensuring reliable performance over time.
  • Secure Latch Lock: Equipped with a latch lock mechanism, this balisong knife provides secure handling and easy deployment, enhancing user safety and confidence during use.
  • Compact and Portable: With a closed length of 5″ and a weight of 5oz, this butterfly knife is conveniently sized for everyday carry, making it a versatile tool for various tasks.
  • Proudly Made in the USA: Manufactured by Bear & Son in Jacksonville, Alabama, this balisong knife embodies American craftsmanship, a testament to the brand’s commitment to producing high-quality knives since 1991.

Bear & Son 115TANW Butterfly White Tanto Knife


  • Compact Design: With a closed length of 5.25 inches, the Bear & Son 115TANW Butterfly White Tanto Knife offers a conveniently compact size, making it easy to carry and store.
  • Durable Tanto Blade: The 3.75-inch black powder-coated stainless tanto blade provides exceptional durability and cutting performance, suitable for a variety of tasks.
  • Unique Aesthetic: Featuring a distinctive white zinc handle, this butterfly knife stands out with its striking appearance, combining functionality with visual appeal.
  • Made in the USA: Proudly crafted in the USA, the Bear & Son 115TANW Butterfly Knife reflects a commitment to quality craftsmanship and attention to detail.
  • Versatile Packaging: Arriving in a boxed package, this knife comes ready for gifting or personal use, making it a versatile addition to your collection or gear.

Scoundrel Black Butterfly Knife


  • Heavy-Duty Durability: The Scoundrel Butterfly Knife boasts exceptional durability, making it a reliable tool for various applications.
  • Solid Metal Handles: With sleek black solid metal handles, this knife combines a classic butterfly look with a modern touch, ensuring a comfortable and secure grip.
  • Smooth Flipping Experience: The knife’s weight and construction enhance the flipping experience, allowing for smooth and controlled maneuvers.
  • Sharp and Resilient Blade: Crafted from stainless 440 steel, the drop-point blade features a black finish that not only adds to its aesthetic appeal but also enhances its cutting performance.
  • Convenient Portability: The package includes a nylon sheath, providing a convenient and safe way to carry the knife, ensuring it’s readily accessible whenever needed.


As we conclude our journey through the world of butterfly knives, it’s evident that these tools are far more than mere cutting instruments; they’re an embodiment of skill, craftsmanship, and a touch of showmanship. 

Whether you’re an aficionado of knife flipping, an outdoor enthusiast, or someone who simply appreciates the artistry of a well-crafted blade, the world of balisongs has something to offer. 

From the traditional to the modern, from classic designs to innovative features, the selection we’ve explored here represents the epitome of balance between function and flair. 

As you embark on your journey to select the best butterfly knife for your needs, remember that each flip is not just a movement—it’s an expression of finesse and a connection to a fascinating tradition that spans generations.


Why are butterfly knives illegal?

Butterfly knives, also known as balisongs, are illegal in many countries due to their potential for criminal use and easy concealment. Here are some reasons why butterfly knives are illegal in various places:

  • Concealed Weapons: Butterfly knives can be easily concealed, making them attractive to those with malicious intent. Their ability to be hidden makes them a potential threat in public spaces.
  • Crime Facilitation: The design and quick deployment of butterfly knives can make them effective tools for criminal activities, such as assaults and robberies. Their ease of use can lead to increased danger in confrontational situations.
  • Safety Concerns: Authorities often ban butterfly knives to protect public safety. Their sharp blades and folding mechanisms can pose a risk to both users and potential victims.
  • Knife Crime: In many jurisdictions, butterfly knives are associated with knife crime. Their use in criminal activities has led to stricter regulations to prevent their possession and use for unlawful purposes.
  • Weapons Regulation: Governments implement bans on butterfly knives to regulate the possession and use of weapons. This helps maintain law and order by reducing the availability of potentially dangerous tools.

Do butterfly knives break easily?

Butterfly knives can break easily if they are not made well or if they are used roughly. Some butterfly knives might not be as strong as other types of knives because they have moving parts. If you use a butterfly knife for things it’s not designed for, like prying or hitting hard things, it can break. It’s important to take care of your butterfly knife and use it properly to make sure it doesn’t break easily.

Is it hard to flip a butterfly knife?

Flipping a butterfly knife might be a bit tricky at first, but with practice, you can get better. It’s like learning a new skill – it takes time to get used to the movements. Start with small and slow flips to build your confidence, and as you practice more, you’ll find it easier to flip the knife smoothly. Just remember to be patient and careful as you learn. Check out this video for additional tips:

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