Blade on a plane?

Feb 7, 1999
I will be going to Colorado soon and this is my first time on a plane. I want to take my Calypso Jr.,full serrated with me. Can anyone help me with the law on this? The flight is out of Newark, N.J. I'll just have carry on luggage. Thanx.
ps. Any suggestions other than my original choice will be appreciated.
The conventional wisdom is:

Try Spyderco Delica or a Benchmade small Ascent 820, in plain edge. There's no known law against serrated edges on airplanes, but enough airport security people have found them "menacing" that it's best to go with plain edge. The two models I mentioned are inexpensive enough that if you lose the knife to overzealous security you won't be hit too hard in the wallet.

I did fly with a fully serrated Endura once, with no problem, but that may not be a reproduceable result.

Alaska Airlines sometimes serves bagels that are in need of cutting.

Take it from an all-too-frequent flier, if you're set on taking the fully serrated Calypso check your bag. You'll spend some time retrieving it later, but will be spared the possible hassle at security. Otherwise, you might want to follow James' advice & opt for an inexpensive alternative.

I've flown out of Newark quite a bit & have been hassled for the computer cables (i.e., security, LAN, telecom, etc.) in my briefcase. Also, since this topic has been discussed before, do an archive search for relevant articles.

Enjoy Colorado. It's a great state.

James and Brian, thank you both for saving me some time and trouble. I wont take the Calypso, I have a spydie M.Walker lightweight that seems like it will be ok.
Thx again.
NP, Mick. 9 out of 10 times security is not a problem, but it's just not worth the grief that 10th time. If you want a laugh, search my "Most embarrasing knife moments" thread.

Two weeks ago I left on a trip from BWI and got stopped at security who serched my carry on bag and found my Spyderco Military. They removed it and measured next to a small piece of plastic adhered to the conveyor belt side rail. They noted that it was not as long as the piece of plastic and let me pass. Too much trouble for me, on the return trip I checked my bag.
Have never had a problem on carrying a small 3" blade,always plain edge though.Just put it in the tray, or in breif case,cordura,clipped on the side. usually check my spydie Moran.But a couple times they looked at it hard, then at me hard, and they have that little plastic gauge widget! Guess it depends on the airport? Does anyone work at the airport, who may have some insight?
Some airports allow you past the metal detectors without a ticket. In that case you can do a dry run. You can also put it in a carry on, edge up. This will help present the lowest profile. You can also clip it to some money and put it in the tray, money up. You can bring a padded self addressed envelope and mail it back to yourself if they won't let you on. If there are lockers and you are coming back, you could leave it in a locker if necessary. I think I would put it in the carry on edge up, or make sure it is the only metal thing on me and put everything else metal in the tray. Then if you set off the detector, nonchalantly pull it out with some money attached and put it in the tray money up. Be polite and calm. Wear "normal" clothes.

The general concensous seems to be the following:

- No fixed blades
- Folders under 4" blade length
- No serations
- No "mean looking" blades. What does this mean? Who knows. I would avoid black coatings and geometrical blade shapes personally. YMMV

As mentioned above, there are times that you MAY get away with a few things, but it's probably not worth the hassle. I've carried a small Sebenza and a mini-SOCOM on board planes. Both have plain edges, are about 3" in blade length, and have silver finishes. I put them in my carry-on suitcase in the little toiletries bag that contains deoderant, shampoo, toothpaste, etc... I position the knife in the bag so that when I lay the bag on the x-ray belt it sees the smallest knife profile possible. I try to position it so that the operator sees only the butt-end of the knife. I've never had any problems when doing this. No bag searches, etc... Even if they did a search, the blade seems to fit all of the required criteria, so they can't say much. As mentioned above, I do carry a small padded, self-addressed, postage paid (remember to use enough postage) envelope with me just in case...

I've carried my full sized AFCK through airport security many times. I always just put it in my carry on bag blade up and among my toiletries as suggested by Senator. Never had a problem and they've never given it a second glance. NOTE! I've never tried this on an international flight and I wouldn't recommend that you try it either. Customd officers can be an entirely dfferent problem.

I cut it, and I cut it, and it's STILL too short!

I've been flying all over Europe and never had a problem, but I never tried to carry anything longer than 2"5/8.

The absolute frequent flyers' knife must be the Spyderco Experimental 1 (now Pegasus C61) or the older Co-Pilot.

But you can carry longer blades as long as the handle is not metal. 90% of metal detectors will not be set off by any Spyderco lightweight, as long as you remember to leave coins, keys, belt buckle etc in your bag.

Customs have nothing to do with airport security.

I called the FAA Security Chief at DIA some weeks ago, and can quote you what he said to me if you will give me a call. 1-800-621-1065


A man doesn't automatically get my respect, he has to get down in the dirt and beg for it.

I had trouble at O'Hare in Chicago over a Gerber Folding Hunter that the FAA police had permitted at then Washington National! Seems that the Gerber was illegal in Chicago and the city officer was most intolerant about it. I shipped it in a small box to my final destination. Since then, I throw whatever knives I wish to bring into my check-through luggage. This is not so big a deal as it once was since you are now limited in carryon luggage.

Walk in the Light,