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Balisong Discussions Customs to productions, discussions about balisongs/butterfly knives, what's the best and how to do those crazy tricks.

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Old 05-16-2005, 07:21 PM
fred winter fred winter is offline
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: metro detroit
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fillipino balisong, circa 1968

to whom it may; i have a fillipino balisong, handmade, about 1968 give or take. crude but not too bad. bought it when i was there, on r+r. two questions, please, anyone know of its approx. value,? can you still buy them from the phillipines. the knife has never been used , or abused. its in new condition, relative to how it was made etc.. thanks fred w.
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Old 05-16-2005, 07:23 PM
balibalistic's Avatar
balibalistic balibalistic is offline
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 425
Can you post any pictures of it,it would be much easier to identify!
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Old 05-16-2005, 07:43 PM
ExamonLyf ExamonLyf is offline
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: So California
Posts: 529
Originally Posted by fred winter
two questions, please, anyone know of its approx. value,? can you still buy them from the phillipines. the knife has never been used , or abused. its in new condition, relative to how it was made etc.. thanks fred w.
Hi Fred .., and welcome!

The value of the Filipino Handmade Balisongs of that era vary a great deal depending on the maker...etc.

As [Balibalistic] mentions, pictures (good ones) would be helpful. The variance mentioned is because the majority produced were "Tourist" models.., and generally a family venture to get as many out on those road side stands as possible (i.e., all family members took part, in what I'd call a crude form of mass production).

Some were actually outstanding knives (I have quite a few good ones) ~~> but they we made by long time makers from Batangas Province that did all the work themselves, while the rest of the family made those of lesser quality. I got my first ones in 1966 over there, but there was certainly a good deal of difference between those made as pure beaters or Tourist knives, and "The Real Deal".

Some may have a maker's mark on the latch or tang, but this isn't common.

[Guessing].., without seeing the knife, knowing the insert material, etc, I'd say $35-$65. If it happens to be one of those made with thicker folded brass U-Channels, and good pivot pin material (which was not common).., then it could be worth quite a bit more.

With Nara Wood, Kamagong, or other indigeous insert material nicely finished, you might be talking in the $120-$150 category for a really wellmade one, but it won't get any better than that without something like stag inserts from the Mindoro Mountains, which is highly unlikely.

Hope that helps a little, but you can also check ebay and/or Blade Auction for these knives. They haven't done well of late, but there are very few of the good ones ever auctioned now.

To answer your other question.., yes.., there are several small Barrio towns in Batangas where Balisongs are still made, and they do filter out to some of the larger cities from there. This cottage industry doesn't thrive as it once did because younger males tend to head for the cities to find better paying work these days, but you can still find literally hundreds of Balisongs along the roadways to Taal, Buli, Tanauan, Lemuri.., and a few other small hamlets.

The last really terrific Filipino maker (using strictly traditional methods) I knew passed away in 1999 (Noel Lanusa), and I'm not sure if there is anyone of his caliber now that hasn't moved on to newer technologies. I'd guess there may be a few, but can't say for sure.

Pete Johnston ~~>

"There is no greater wisdom.., than [KINDNESS]"

"Hunters seek what they [WANT].., Seekers hunt what they [NEED]"

Last edited by ExamonLyf; 05-16-2005 at 07:58 PM.
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