Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 55 total)
  • Are multi tools with knives illegal?
  • Premier Icon mlke
    Free Member

    I was curious after reading the Chipps article on knives.
    One of my older multi tools – a Topeak Alien has a short (?3cm) blade which will lock open. Is this technically illegal to carry/making me subject to arrest because it locks?

    Premier Icon Drac
    Full Member

    Not if you have a justified reason for carrying one.

    Premier Icon giantalkali
    Free Member

    I have similar on my Gerber suspension, i used it to free a sheep caught in brambles. A passing copper helped me and didn’t mention the knife.

    But I wasn’t in a city centre pub

    Premier Icon Greybeard
    Full Member

    A locking blade is illegal irrespective of length, but there is an exemption for ‘lawful authority or reasonable excuse’. Lawful authority is intended to cover the army, etc, and discussion I’ve seen on caving and paddling forums has been to the effect that if you’re carrying ropes for safety, a knife is reasonable. But I haven’t heard of a test case, and I while suppose it could be argued that you would need to say why you need a knife to fix a bike, I’ve not worried about it.

    Maybe one of the police officers or lawyers will comment?

    Premier Icon jam bo
    Full Member

    Hope not As I tend to have a leatherman on me or close by most of the time.

    Premier Icon mlke
    Free Member

    I’ve used it for bike maintenance and first aid – mostly cutting tubes/tape for bodging repairs to get broken me/bike home.
    As part of my work I occasionally visit prison cells / courts and I usually remember to leave tools / medicines / phones at the desk – mostly to reduce self harm risk if a “customer” some how manages to get into my bag. No ones commented on it yet.
    They’re mostly a canny lot the police but have occasionally come across an officer who’s an arse so I want to make sure I don’t give them an excuse to nab me for carrying a weapon

    Premier Icon rene59
    Free Member

    You’d need a reason for having it, unfortunately I wouldn’t trust the police to make the right call should they be presented with the opportunity.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Full Member

    Lawful authority is intended to cover the army, etc,

    It’s far simpler than that as the military come under very different exemptions, you can carry one to and from work or use for sports but has to be justified. Carrying it with you in your bike out in the hills would cover it if you explain why you needed it.

    Premier Icon jeffl
    Full Member

    Looked into this a while ago. If it has a folding non locking blade under 3 inches you can carry it on you down the high street just because you want to. You don’t red a reason.

    If it’s over 3 inches or a locking knife e.g. a Gerber or Leatherman you can have it on your person as long as you have reasonable cause to require it. So walking down the high street isn’t a good reason but requiring it for work or whilst out on the hills is.

    Premier Icon shifter
    Free Member

    I don’t carry a multitool ’cause they weigh a bloody ton. There is a Victorinox in my Camelbak that I’ve used very occasionally. I don’t think I’ve ever worried about it not having a lock.

    Edit, one of these:

    Premier Icon mike_p
    Free Member

    What do you reckon the law says about carrying one of these? Locking blade, but is it a knife?

    Premier Icon ferrals
    Free Member

    The issue there is the reasonable cause is (presumably) cutting trees/deadwood (causing damage) on land you dont own.. so either way you are in potentially trouble

    Premier Icon Teetosugars
    Free Member

    What do you reckon the law says about carrying one of these? Locking blade, but is it a knife?

    Depends on the setting I guess..

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Full Member

    Do you really think the feds would try to do you for guerilla pruning on RoWs?

    I wouldn’t worry about carrying a folding saw, unless you’re wearing a hoody and baseball cap and hanging around the street in Peckham.

    Premier Icon dissonance
    Full Member

    Locking blade, but is it a knife?

    For the avoidance of any court cases and the such I would consider it to be one and stick to the “good reason” approach to carrying it.
    Although that in itself isnt that clear so always best to err towards caution.

    Premier Icon Gary_M
    Free Member

    I have a lock knife in my walking rucksack. I’ve used it a couple of times, cutting a bit of rope for something and some other reason. I have zero reason to worry about carrying it as the chance of me being stopped and searched on a hill walk must be fairly remote.

    Premier Icon thegreatape
    Full Member

    Maybe one of the police officers or lawyers will comment?

    Cyclists/walkers/climbers etc. with multi tools/Leathermen/Swiss Army knives do not need to worry.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Full Member

    For the avoidance of any court cases and the such I would consider it to be one and stick to the “good reason” approach to carrying it.

    It is one it has a blade on it that makes it a knife.

    Premier Icon bettyswollocks
    Free Member

    The key carrying anything deemed ‘dubious’ is justification. Walking down the local high street waving a serrated saw or carrying a small knife with a locking blade while on a night out on the drink may result in action being taken against you. Carrying the same items in a pack up on the hills or in the woods for (legal) trail maintenance or repair duties can be justified and folk shouldn’t be worried.
    For anyone who believes they would be arrested for carrying a knife (whilst out on the bike) which forms part of a multi-tool is seriously misinformed, has no knowledge of the law or watches too much TV.

    Premier Icon rene59
    Free Member

    For anyone who believes they would be arrested for carrying a knife (whilst out on the bike) which forms part of a multi-tool is seriously misinformed, has no knowledge of the law or watches too much TV.

    Or maybe they grew up in a deprived area where police abusing their powers was rife.

    A middle class middle aged person out in the country side likely wouldn’t be arrested. A young kid riding about in their local council scheme, park or woods is another story.

    Premier Icon Gary_M
    Free Member

    Or maybe they grew up in a deprived area where police abusing their powers was rife.

    Desperate attempt to get dig in at the police there.

    A middle class middle aged person out in the country side likely wouldn’t be arrested. A young kid riding about in their local council scheme, park or woods is another story.

    Obviously, because clearly the reasons for carrying said knife are entirely different. Are you too blind and prejudiced to see that?

    Premier Icon rene59
    Free Member

    Desperate attempt to get dig in at the police there.

    No, just experience.

    Obviously, because clearly the reasons for carrying said knife are entirely different. Are you too blind and prejudiced to see that?

    Why would they have different reasons? They would both use it to repair their bike? It’s not me being prejudiced.

    Premier Icon ballsofcottonwool
    Free Member

    Technically carrying a kitchen knife in a washing up bowl across a camp site is illegal.

    I would be happy to carry a locking blade knife in my camelbak when out mountain biking, have you ever seen a policeman out on the moors? It kind of explains the lack of raptors.

    Premier Icon PeterPoddy
    Free Member

    Carrying the same items in a pack up on the hills or in the woods for (legal) trail maintenance or repair duties can be justified and folk shouldn’t be worried

    To my mind it depends largely on intent and location. If you’re the sort of person who regularly gets into trouble and you’re carrying a knife to a pub, in your pocket, then don’t moan if you get rugged by the law.
    If you’re a fine upstanding joe bloggs and carry a knife as a tool, in a sheath at the bottom of your bag then nobody will ever know or care.
    I nearly always carry a Leatherman like many of us on here, plus it could be classed as a tool of my trade. Right now it’s at the bottom of my panniers. I have absolutely no concerns carrying it at all.

    Premier Icon stevemtb
    Free Member

    Had never considered this, have a wee multi tool in the front of the van with a small blade on it. Sure it would be fine but could easily be questioned why it was the only tool not in my tool box. Also carried about a hammer in the front seat for a week when my starter motor was playing up. Didn’t consider the implications of that until someone questioned it!

    A mate was working around my house, stuck a stanley knife in his pocket when moving between tasks. I dropped him off in the pub after we finished and got a call shortly after to come back down, he’d put his hand in his pocket to find the knife – was in a pretty dodgy pub too. He’d have really struggled to explain that one!

    Premier Icon Drac
    Full Member

    Technically carrying a kitchen knife in a washing up bowl across a camp site is illegal.

    No that’s a justified reason legal but I see what you’re trying to get at.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    I have a knife on me all the time – small multi tool thing, river knife (3″ fixed), climbing knife (2″ folder) and bushcraft knife (3″ fixed). I regularly walk into schools with half a dozen fixed blade knives in a bag.

    I’ve never had a problem, and even chatted to police with climbing knife in full view on harness or colleagues with paddling knife on buoyancy aid.

    There is a world of difference between being on a river bank, canoeing and having a blade in the glovebox with no job or activity to support why. I do know one forest school practitioner who has his knife confiscated – he was walking home across princess street in Edinburgh with it hanging on his belt, not in rucsack.

    When I go into school, ours are in a ‘danger box’, with fire lighting things, in a bag. I’ve never had it challenged by schools.

    Premier Icon jonnyboi
    Full Member

    is ‘fear of terrorism’ a justifiable reason for carrying a whopping great knife in the car glove box.

    asking for a fiend.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Full Member

    When I go into school, ours are in a ‘danger box’, with fire lighting things, in a bag. I’ve never had it challenged by schools.

    Cool name.

    Premier Icon Gary_M
    Free Member

    Why would they have different reasons? They would both use it to repair their bike? It’s not me being prejudiced.

    I don’t know, it’s your scenario, you’re trying to depict a scene of injustice, not me.

    Premier Icon Yak
    Full Member

    is ‘fear of terrorism’ a justifiable reason for carrying a whopping great knife in the car glove box.
    asking for a fiend.

    Fiend or not, but you sound like the bloke behind me a few days ago. A tree just fell down blocking the road. I got out and scoped routes around. Bloke behind me got out a handy machete and started hacking at it. He wasn’t getting out of a gardener’s van either 🙂

    Anyway, I personally would stick to UK legal carry, as I have a history of the odd stop and search by the police.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    Cool name

    It’s either an old biscuit tin or cheap Wickes toolbox, so well cool….

    Premier Icon Drac
    Full Member

    Oooh judt like those 80s firework safety films.

    Premier Icon jonnyboi
    Full Member

    Fiend or not, but you sound like the bloke behind me a few days ago. A tree just fell down blocking the road. I got out and scoped routes around. Bloke behind me got out a handy machete and started hacking at it. He wasn’t getting out of a gardener’s van either

    oh God now, I carry one of these for those kind of situations

    Premier Icon bettyswollocks
    Free Member

    For anyone who believes they would be arrested for carrying a knife (whilst out on the bike) which forms part of a multi-tool is seriously misinformed, has no knowledge of the law or watches too much TV.
    Or maybe they grew up in a deprived area where police abusing their powers was rife.

    A middle class middle aged person out in the country side likely wouldn’t be arrested. A young kid riding about in their local council scheme, park or woods is another story.

    Again, not necessarily.
    As much as folk love a bit of metaphorical ‘police-bashing’, let’s not forget that it’s not 1982 any more and most people accept that cops don’t go around doling out beatings on the street and locking up kids.
    Recent changes in Police and Criminal Evidence Act means that all other alternative options should be considered prior to arresting someone and that any such arrest is only carried out if deemed to be a necessity based on the circumstances. Without wanting to be too technical or political, any arrest has to be proportionate, legal and necessary. Just because a kid from the local council estate is riding around the local park with a knife doesn’t mean an automatic stay in the cells. Policing is not as black and white (can I say that?) as the media will have you believe.

    Premier Icon fisha
    Free Member

    You’d need a reason for having it, unfortunately I wouldn’t trust the police to make the right call should they be presented with the opportunity.

    🙄

    (Scottish laws discussed here… ) Technically its not wholly upto the Police to make that choice, although there is always elements of discretion (more on that later). If it falls under the illegal category (locking blade etc) then by the letter of the law, if your in a public place, you can be arrested for it … doesn’t matter what you say, you can technically be arrested, end of. The wording is basically, illegal to have without reasonable / lawful excuse, proof of which shall lie with them …

    That proof of reasonable / lawful excuse happens at the court … not in the street by the officer. I have had a case where I have arrested a person for possession of knife out in the street in the late evening where it was in his back pocket. It went to court, and he presented what the sheriff considered a reasonable excuse. I wasn’t faulted in my action, but it shows my point that the proof which lies with him happens at the court stage, and not a decision of the Police at the time.

    All that being said, there is always discretion and everything in its circumstance. If you’re out and about hiking, mtbing, climbing or somesort of activity where as part of your kitbag you have stored in your bag a multitool which has a locking blade then is that really going to be an arrestable offence … no not really. Are you using it / possessing it in a manner which is likely to endanger others? no. Equally, walking across a campsite with your dishes for washing.

    That being said, strolling down the high street out on the lash getting drunk with your mates with the same locking blade multitool in your back pocket is not really acceptable, and could quite conceivably get you arrested.

    I’m not sure I would trust the guidance on that Gov.UK website linked above.

    Lock knives

    Lock knives are not classed as folding knives and are illegal to carry in public without good reason. Lock knives:
    •have blades that can be locked and refolded only by pressing a button
    •can include multi-tool knives – tools that also contain other devices such as a screwdriver or can opener

    That definition wouldn’t cover a standard Opinel, which I think most people would agree is a lock knife.

    Premier Icon giantalkali
    Free Member

    How many of us have ever had a run in with the police that ended up in a stop-and-search type situation? I’ve been told to get off the pavement while riding once or twice in 40 years had had a few stops in a boy-racer car back in the day. They never amounted to a search or anything more than a chat, though some were fairly ‘forceful’ chats.

    Maybe I’ve been lucky, or just white, but I grew up somewhere that’s rough as a badger’s arse and did my fair share of stupid things. From the input of the various coppers on here it seems that they have the good sense to measure the situation accordingly. If I had acted up then I imagine I could very easily have been frisked.

    How many here act like a bellend when there’s police nearby?

    Premier Icon rene59
    Free Member

    All that being said, there is always discretion and everything in its circumstance. If you’re out and about hiking, mtbing, climbing or somesort of activity where as part of your kitbag you have stored in your bag a multitool which has a locking blade then is that really going to be an arrestable offence … no not really. Are you using it / possessing it in a manner which is likely to endanger others? no. Equally, walking across a campsite with your dishes for washing.

    In this scenario you would likely have been stopped for something else, perhaps innocently, perhaps not. It would be unlikely the police would be present during these activities otherwise. In my experience if presented with an opportunity to do the police would take it and add on an additional knife charge turning something fairly minor into something much more serious.

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 55 total)

The topic ‘Are multi tools with knives illegal?’ is closed to new replies.