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tanto vs. western tanto

Joined
Sep 24, 2009
Messages
1
Actually I prefer Drop Point blades, since they are usually better as utillity knives.

The only advantage of a Tanto Blade is in my opinine, that the tip is stronger and that it is better for fighting.

But where is the diffrence between a Tanto Blade and a "Western Tanto Blade"?

A Western Tanto Blade should be easier to produce. So I am sure if the Western Tanto would be better in a combat, the Japanese, who had much more experience by using blades in war, would have found out.

Is there any practical reason for a Western Tanto Blade or is it all about the design?
 
Joined
Apr 23, 2007
Messages
4,984
I believe the premise for the Western tanto was to produce a blade with a stronger tip due to the geometry. A traditional tanto has more of a drop point tip. The closest production knife I can think of with a traditional tanto is the CS Hissatsu.
 
Joined
May 12, 2001
Messages
11,707
imho the only plus to a tanto would be, possibly, maybe, its stabbing ability, and even thats debatable, it certainly isnt in most folks opinion the best fighting style knife, which is probably a bowie style blade.

i also dont think the japanese know any more about fighting with knives than a lot of other countries, after all before the advent of firearms swords were the top of the line fighting implement so imho a lot of cultures/countries know a thing or 2 about fighting with a blade.

the western tanto does indeed have more of a drop kind of tip vs the 2 angled american tanto, the american tanto is supposedly easier to grind due to most of them are chisel ground vs "V" ground,

IIRC the spyderco lum fixed blade and folders were more traditional tanto blades. but the american style have always been more popular, like the EKI CQC7. why? i dont have a clue, maybe because more models were available in the american style?

also i edc'd a EKI SOCFK CG tanto for over a yr and it did fine for me for utility, all i ever need is a sharp edge and it certainly supplied that.
 

Planterz

Іди на хуй Путін!
Platinum Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2004
Messages
22,489
A traditional tanto bears very little resemblance to the Americanized tanto.

I personally think the Americanized tanto concept is 99% bunk. The straight edges might be easier to sharpen, and if the front portion is straight, you can use it to scrape flat surfaces, but that's about it.

Want a tip for penetrating? Make it stabbier.

Want a stronger tip? Grind it thicker.

Bob Lum took the traditional tanto shape and gave it a stronger tip. Cold Steel then bastardized it into the Americanized tanto shape, like their iconic Recon or Magnum tanto fixed blades.

I personally think that reason that the Americanized tanto is so prevalent is a combination of 2 things:

Cold Steel's marketing and "Proof" videos,

and

The (largely incorrect) portrayal of ninjas in cinema, particularly their chisel-tipped "ninja-to" swords.

If you can stab it through a car hood, and the ninjas used them, it must be good, right?:rolleyes:
 

nff

Joined
Sep 22, 2009
Messages
79
you mean this
CR2910_xlarge_28199_large_95.jpg


VS
this
Ka5054.jpg
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2006
Messages
1,165
Solutions sometimes have a way of finding problems to go with them, so it's certainly possible to find uses for the geometric tanto. In my small experience, these uses tend to center around the primary point, the fact that there is a secondary point and the fact that there is a secondary cutting edge. All of that said, I definitely think a traditional tanto profile is more generally useful than a geometric tanto, and a drop point is more generally useful than either.

I guess one other thing is that some people probably find geometric tantos easier to sharpen than bellied profiles.
 
Joined
May 20, 2009
Messages
648
As many have mentioned above, I personally can't see any advantage of the geometric tanto blade shape. To me, it makes no sense.

I prefer a drop point for most uses. A bowie clip point is my second choice.
 
Joined
Nov 23, 2003
Messages
1,234
The Tanto is a Jinto, war, blade. They are meant for battle.

uhhem..the tanto was not widely used in battle, hence why most have no guard (tsuba). _and yes, some have guards-but the majority do not.

I've seen 2 tanto that were actually ment for battlefield use, and the spine was nearly 1/2" thick, making whats sold as a "tanto" today look like a toy.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Aug 24, 2009
Messages
1,260
Personally I hate tantos seems to me that the sharp angle in the blad will be doing most of the cutting, and therfore get dull more quickly, and after enough sharpenings it rounds out anyway
 
Joined
Sep 13, 2008
Messages
163
I have a drop point hunter made by Ontario and used to have a Cold Steel Kobun. They were almost the same blade width and when I compared the two tips, because of the curve and up swept blade shape, the tip on the drop point hunter actually had more steel near it than the Kobun tanto. Stronger tip? Not with less steel around it.
In my opinion, the western tanto is just for looks.
 
Joined
May 12, 2001
Messages
11,707
Tell that to the smatchet crowd! :D

smatchets are good for sure but imho a really large bowie thats made right, like one of several of the custom ones ( who's 'smiths names i forget) used in cutting competions would be awfully hard to beat.

of course what do i know i'm no knife fighter, i have only "heard" what is "supposedly" "good" lol, but ya would think good slashing ability would be a plus, along with plenty of reach, a good secure handle, and some stabbing ability to boot, a bowie fills all that fairly well imho.

and either the bowie or the smatchett would fill the bill better than most any tanto's i've seen, western or traditional.
 
Joined
Mar 16, 2005
Messages
3,652
If you can stab it through a car hood, and the ninjas used them, it must be good, right?:rolleyes:

God Bless you, Planterz!:thumbup::D That made my day!! If that doesn't end up in somebody's sig line, I'll be shocked!

The Tanto is a Jinto, war, blade. They are meant for battle.

or committing suicide (sempuku)

That was quite good as well, though it is Seppuku, not Sempuku, you meant!!:D

Regards,
3G
 
Joined
Aug 24, 2007
Messages
43,271
Thanks 3G. All folks have to do is read the history of the Tanto, which is technically a short sword. Source: The Samurai Sword, by John Yumoto.
 
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