Brass knucles. Effective?

I’ve worn one and it felt very uncomfortable. It felt like I could break my fingers if I hit something with enough force. Also in boxing they teach us to keep our wrists slightly bent so the fist lands with the major knuckles, but with a brass knuckle you have to hit with the fist landing flatly, which is counterintuitive, at least for me.

Are brass knuckles effective or just for show?

The brass knuckles I once saw had a large extension behind them that fit into your palm. When the leading edge hits the target, the impact force would be immediately transferred from the rings of the brass knuckles directly to the heel of your palm; your fingers would just be along for the ride.

good examples here.

Brass knuckles or knuckle dusters usually assist in punching someone in two ways; first by adding weight to your punch so that even a poorly thrown one can really hurt and secondly by making the brass rings the point of contact so that you don’t break your fingers or knuckles by slamming them into someones head. Like Machine Elf said there’s a palm portion that you use to brace them and raise the rings off of your fingers, in effect making your arm a rather crude cudgel.

Brass knuckles very, very effective for the reasons already stated above - they add mass and hardness to a punch, and protect the puncher’s hand in the process. They can lacerate through blunt force trauma, break bones, and cause internal or intercranial hemorrhage. They may look like paperweights, but they’re potentially deadly weapons.

Do you need to have the right size for your hand? Maybe Dog80’s didn’t fit him.

Oh I love the Apache Revolvers ( ).

I guess it’s good to not hurt yourself, but isn’t the point of brass knuckles to be able to inflict greater - even potentially fatal - injuries upon your foe than you could with bare knuckles?

“… unintentionally kill someone.”

If you are in a situation that you use brass knuckles, you had better be sure the use of the weapon is justified. Just like with any weapon.

Someone taps you on the shoulder, you turn around and decapitate them, then find out they were a Girl Scout trying to sell you cookies, you are going to jail. You pull brass knuckles in a brawl and someone gets injured or killed, you could face charges or lawsuits. The use of the weapon has to be justified by circumstances.

But yes, the intent of brass knuckles is to increase your ability at the expense of your opponent, including death as a possible outcome for said opponent.

I’ve never held brass knuckles, but my limited experience holding things suggests gripping with your fingers through loops could make your fingers sore. Ever had a ring crunched between your fingers because you shook hands with a brute?

But used properly (and sized properly, I assume), the brass edge takes the blow and transfers it to the long bones of your arm through the palm of your hand, bypassing the knuckles and hand bones.

Keep in mind that brass knuckles are illegal to possess in many jurisdictions, including California. Same with nunchucks, pen knives, sword canes and many other personal weapons.

A good rule of thumb: if your fingers fit into the brass knucles snuggly like they’re a series of rings, they’re too tight for you.
Brass knuckles should be loose so that your fingers aren’t the part of your body that absorbs the blow, the “knuckle” part of the weapon is only there to hold them in place more easily. They’re not supposed to “grip” your fingers while you punch. In fact, doing so would go against half of the point of brass knuckles, which is to prevent your fingers from breaking when you punch too hard (as often happens when one punches barehanded).

As has been stated, the idea is to a) give your punches a smaller and harder point of contact and b) redirect the impact to your palm/forearm. Used right, they can most definitely kill or cripple someone in one shot.


To avoid confusion, Lex87 was a spammer and has been sent to the cornfield along with all his posts; I’ve deleted the original post that was quoted in this one.

General Questions Moderator

[nitpick] Not the fingers (the phalanges) but the bones in the hand (the metacarpals).
Commonly known as a boxer’s/brawler’s/bar room fracture. [/nitpick]

Dusters redirect the energy away from the long bones of the hand to the small bones of the wrist (the carpals). So you’re less likely to break bones in your hand, while increasing the chance of damaging the “soft” tissue (muscles/ligaments/tendons) instead.

CMC fnord!

Knucks with added stabby goodness

Probably the most unusual of the “knuckle duster” trench knives, the BC41.
If only because (AIUI);
It’s designed to be used for only one purpose, taking out sentries from behind.
In one specific way, after grabbing the sentry’s chin to pull his head to the side, the blade is plunged into the hollow between the collar bone and the neck, hopefully severing one or more major blood vessels. :eek:

CMC fnord!

Only a lunatic would carry brass knuckles around with them, actually hitting someone with them would land you in multiple felony hell regardless if the person being hit got badly hurt and injured or if it was even somehow justified. This dude got in a fight at the Buffalo Wild Wings across the street from my house last month and just hit a dude with a 23oz beer glass, didn’t cut the guy, didn’t really even hurt the guy and he was was charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and aggravated battery in a public place, both of which are felonies. If you could get charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon just for throwing a pint at someone, if you cracked them upside the head with some brass knuckles you’d probably be facing the same with the extra added bonus of attempted murder.

I have two pair of them myself and like lots of other neat shit that I own they stay in my collection of things and will never, ever leave that drawer.

I got sucker punched in the arm with a set of knucks. The guy who hit me was actually a friend. He’d just bought them and grossly underestimated how much damage they can do. I had some really deep, nasty bruises as a result of his little joke.

So come up with some completely bizarre and unrealistic set of circumstances for why the guy using the brass knuckles didn’t bring them, but picked them up off a table or something when the other guy attacked him with a knife. That’s conceivably a self-defense situation where he would not be presented with any charges - the use of the brass knuckles was offset by the knife attack, and there are no charges for possession because they weren’t his to begin with.

But yeah, I’m not an expert on brass knuckles law, I was merely responding to the points about “using them correctly” and “not hurting yourself or killing someone”. If you use them, you’d better have a strong justification.

In the article you link, the description of the fight is vague, but suggests the defendent was the one who started the violence by first throwing a bar stool, then throwing the bottle. I can totally describe a scenario where his use of a beer bottle would not have resulted in him being charged. Like, say, the other guy pulled a knife and tried to stab him. Smashing a beer bottle on the head of the guy attacking him could, if not prevent charges, certainly be a strong affirmative legal argument of self-defense.

As I said, it’s about the circumstances.

On the other hand, a roll of quarters, or nickles for those with smaller hands, is completely legal and provides some of the same benefits as well as coming in handy on laundry day.

The only benefit is adding weight to your hand, you’ll absolutely destroy the bones in your hand with that though.

If you’re gripping them in your palm, wouldn’t that protect your bones?