<< Back to Shop Learn Knives

Butterfly Knife Maintenance: Do’s & Don’ts


If I had to pick one type of knife to be deemed “coolest knife of them all,” without a doubt it would have to be the balisong. I mean, butterfly knives are hardcore, they provide endless hours of entertainment, it’s captivating to watch someone flip a balisong, and they’re pretty unique.

Even though balisong knives look pretty hardcore and are a lot of fun to use, they’re not necessarily hard-use knives. If you want your butterfly to last for a long time, follow these guidelines for easy butterfly knife maintenance.

Easy Butterfly Knife Maintenance



As a general rule, prying is not something you should be doing with any knife. There are some blade shapes that some people will tell you are well suited for prying, but even so, you’re kind of playing with fire any time you pry with your knife. When you pry, you’re risking breaking off the tip of your blade, or even making the whole blade become bent. Prying is especially risky with blades that have more delicate points (ex: clip point, dagger, etc.), which are more prone to breaking. Also, since butterfly knives aren’t fixed blades, they have more parts that can break than a fixed blade and are therefore (you guessed it) more susceptible to breaking when used for prying.

Perform Heavy Chores

Heavy chores are generally reserved for fixed blades and the occasional rugged folding knife with a strong lock. Butterfly knives don’t have a full tang or any kind of locking mechanism, and they’re an elongated and fairly fragile tool. The original balisong that was created years and years ago may have been constructed more ruggedly, from what I’ve heard, but the balisongs that are made today are not intended for heavy chores. You can use them for light to maybe moderate, everyday tasks, but it’s probably not a good idea to go and hack at a log with your balisong.


Butterfly knife maintenance is largely the same for balisongs and all knives alike. The same basic things like cleaning and oiling your blade still apply to your butterfly knife, even if you’re not using it to cut stuff very often. Cleaning and oiling your knife will help it to look pretty (which is always a bonus) and keep pivot points and other moving parts operating smoothly. Also check screws and tighten them as needed.

Even though balisongs might not be your hard-use survival knife, it’s still perfectly fine to flip them to your heart’s content! Butterfly knives are made to be used. There are definitely some budget butterfly knives out there that although are fine for starting out a collection or those times when you don’t want to spend a ton of money, but if you spend just a bit more, you can get a really high quality butterfly knife that will hold up very well to your refined flipping skills.

There are going to be restrictions with every knife if you want it to last a long time, so balisong knives are not unique in this respect. Following these simple do’s and don’ts will help your butterfly knife last longer.

Do you have any tips to help balisongs last longer? Let us know what you do for butterfly knife maintenance in the comments section below!

Shop Butterfly Knives on Blade HQ