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PA knife laws?

Oct 2, 1998
What are the knife laws like in Pennsylvania? Specifically - I'll be carrying a small Sebenza in a belt sheath or clipped to my front pants pocket. I'll also have a mini-AFCK (partially serrated). Any problems with these?

Thanks in advance.

Nope no problems with those. Pa. knife laws are very lax,big cities may have their own however. I wouldn`t wear a KaBar on my belt everyday but if I was in outdoorsy cloths and hiking boots I suspect I`d get away with it. My 12"blade EDMF trench bowie would probably be out though.
Any folder is fine so long as it`s not an auto. I carry a BM Panther or CS Lg.Vaquero everyday and I`ve never even has an eyebrow raised. Marcus
Senator, I just retired from the Philadelphia police dept. and in 25 years I never saw anyone get arrested for carrying a knife unless they stuck it in someone. Just use common sense and you shouldn't have any problems.

Maybe you can help with this one. I live in PA, and have been trying to find out if there's any way to get a license for concealed carry that relates to knives. Do you have any info on this?


Hello Terry and other PA residents.
I also am interested in the legality of carrying cold steel and other tools in the commonwealth.

For me, the big questions are are fixed blade sheath knives permissable, even carried concealed? Perhaps not machetes but I was thinking along the lines of a blades four to six inches in length.

And now, I have heard that Pa citizens with an official certificate of training (provided via the police?) can carry ASP batons as a "less than lethal " option.
If anybody else can confirm or deny this, please fill us in.

The clash between State and local weapon laws is another problem to be surmounted. A few months ago I initiated discussions on just that matter in rec.guns (many of whose carrying members should for their own safety have some savvy in laws, I hope) and another group ... I forgot the other. While information posted online should be taken with a grain of salt (where the law is concerned, use cyber info as a guide and double or triple check the facts), I did get the impression that unless local laws are expressly forbidden from challenging or affecting state legislation, local jurisdictions can post stricter restrictions. Of course, a citizen traveling into a more restrictive city or county could challenge those laws but it would be costly.

My heartfelt sympathies go to Terry and our other law enforcement officers for having to deal with this confusing legal jigsaw puzzle!

Perhaps we as Pa residents can continue to share our information and views on this matter. A Bladeforums section dedicated to untangling the headache of laws in our states and countries would be extremely welcomed. I for one would like to carry a fixed bladed knife and train for the expanding baton but wont do so unless the law says so. I find that ever since I have carried folders, sprays and flashlights, I make more of an effort to avoid trouble as I am aware of the consequences. But I would like to upgrade. Can't be too secure in our unstable world.
As far as I know a concealed weapon permit only applies to firearms. it is my opinion that you can carry a knife any way you want it, after all if you drop your Case canoe in your pocket that is concealed and there isn't a law against that. A auto is illegal anyway you carry it.
I cant see any PD wasting their budget issuing permits for the expanding batons. Where i worked we weren't allowed to carry them on duty. Why waste money on a fancy baton just get a lead pipe or better yet a nice .45!
Wow, a 25 year Philadelphia cop. As a Philadelphian I have about a million questions to ask. I'll try to keep it to one or two. As Terry said, the concealed weapons permit only applies to firearms. There are times when I am walking the street at night and would really like to have a nice fixed blade concealed on my person. Now, I could legally carry a firearm concealed if I had the permit but I can not leagally carry the fixed blade concealed. I am a law abiding citizen without a criminal record but the fear of somehow getting charged with carrying a concealed weapon scares the %*)! out of me. Is it simply not worth the risk? Several people have told me that if you are not doing anything wrong you wont get caught, but stuff happens some time. You never know when you'll get pulled over for something and have yourself searched- suspicion and probable cause are subjective terms and its difficult to explain why you have 4 inch tanto blade in a kydex sheath in your waistband at the small of your back. Anyway, any opinions or comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.