View Full Version : DesignQuestion: How to determine balance

04-29-2010, 03:31 PM
I'm trying to figure out how I would determine the balance point for a finished knife and what the best balance point is for a knife in general.

For instance if you are starting with a knife where the handle and blade are the same length, say 4" each the balance point would presumably be at the mid-point.

But then you have the bolsters to attach and the skins, and the shaping etc which is going to change everything.

So is this just a matter of experience or is there some formula or other method to at least get close to what you want?


04-29-2010, 04:09 PM
I've been at it for a long time, and can't point to any formula you can use......experience it the teacher from my point of view.

For blades that are less than 6", the balance point should generally be right where the index finger rests when the knife is held in a normal grip. As blades get beyond 6" in length, the balance point generally moves forward.

For me balance is achieved more so from building knives with distal tapers (tapered blade and tang), and understanding that certain features/materials can affect the overall balance of the finished piece.

04-29-2010, 05:30 PM
Thanks for the information Ed. I'll try those methods and see how things go

George Tichbourne
04-30-2010, 06:14 AM
There is no formula because the balance point varies depending on the intended use of the knife.

A chopper will benefit from a weight forward bias, a mid size knife will work well if the balance point is just forward of the handle and a small bird and trout knife is usually handle heavy for comfort.

You will find that most knives will balalnce right if you use guards or bolsters with your handle but you can affect blade balance by not using guards or by using pommels to move the balance point.


05-03-2010, 07:59 PM
In my experience "balance" when referring to a knife is much more complicated then just the weight in the front or in the rear. A knife that is blade heavy may feel just fine if the handle is a little over sized. and a knife that is handle heavy will feel very nice if the handle has a soft texture to it. I know this clouds things up but I think their is more to consider than just weight when balancing a knife. I like to consider "balance" to be an overall comfort thing. of course I have used more than I have made but this has been my observation.