Texas Knife Laws

The State of Texas
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This article has been updated on June 8, 2021, to include the updated statutes in the Texas penal code included specifically in the September 2017 House Bill #01935

Texas knife laws are primarily found in the Court’s decisions, or case law, as the statutes are short and do not provide much information about the meaning of terms.

Under Article 1, Section 23 of the Texas State Constitution, Texans enjoy a broadly interpreted right to bear arms that include knives. However, Article 1, Section 23 also grants the Texas legislature the legal right to regulate weapons to prevent violent crimes.

Texas Knife Law Reform: Background

In 1871, the Texas Legislature adopted a bill barring Texans from carrying Bowie knives and other arms like slingshots, swords, canes, and brass knuckles. In 2017, these restrictions finally ended. Gov. Greg Abbott signed HB 1935 changing the term “illegal knife” to “location-restricted knife.” 

Now Texas defines an illegal knife as a knife with a blade longer than 5½ inches.

The 2017 bill removed all criminal penalties associated with carrying most knives in the state of Texas.  Legislators removed legal language that restricted specific knife designs.  However, at the last minute, an amendment to the bill was added barring the carrying of knives with blades longer than 5 and a half inches. This was due to a tragic and illegal knife attack on a college campus just blocks away from the capital.

This article summarizes the case law and the statutes so that anyone can understand what is legal and what is not when it comes to owning and carrying knives in the state of Texas.

What Is Legal To Own

  • It is legal to own throwing stars or any type of throwing knife
  • It is legal to own dirks, daggers, stilettos, and other stabbing knives
  • It is legal to own a bowie knife
  • It is legal to own a sword or spear
  • It is legal to own a switchblade knife
  • It is legal to own a pocket knife
  • It is legal to own a Balisong, or butterfly knife

You don’t have to have a permit to carry knives in Texas.

What is Illegal

  • It is illegal to carry a “location-restricted” knife to/near specific locations.

The Texas state legislature does not limit other knives.

What the Texas Knife Laws State

The state legislature is covered by the Unlawful Carrying Weapons law as well as some case precedents.

§ 46.02.  Unlawful Carrying Weapons

(a) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries on

or about his or her person a handgun, illegal knife, or club if the person is not:

(1) on the person’s own premises or premises under the person’s control; or

(2) inside of or directly en route to a motor vehicle or watercraft that is owned by the person or under the person’s control.

Definitions of Various Types of Knives

Switchblade

An automatic switchblade knife, as defined by the Texas code, has a blade that folds, closes, or retracts into the handle, and opens automatically by applying pressure to a button on the handle, by gravity, or by centrifugal force (rotating the knife). 

Knives described as switchblade knives do not include those that are kept closed by a spring, spring-like device, or other mechanism and that must be opened by exerting force on the blade with the hand, wrist, or arm. It is not necessary for a switchblade to be operable in its original condition to qualify as a switchblade under the law. 

In Smith v. State, the Texas Court of Appeals affirmed Mr. Smith’s conviction for carrying a switchblade with a broken release mechanism, because Mr. Smith retained the blade with a rubber band, but had no difficulty using the knife as a switchblade. It was ruled that the knife did not have to operate in the originally intended manner for a conviction to be obtained under the statute. 

Update – as of September 1, 2013, switchblades are no longer illegal in the state of Texas.

Throwing Stars

Prior to the passage of the new knife law in 2017, in Albert v. State, the defendant was charged with carrying a concealed deadly weapon, a charge he sought to dismiss on the grounds that the objects found by the arresting officer under a floor mat were not throwing stars and thus not illegal to carry. The court found the testimony of the arresting officer to be sufficient to support the finding that the objects were throwing stars and therefore illegal to carry.

However, with the passage of the new law in 2017, throwing stars (and any other type of throwing knife) are now legal.  

Dagger and Bowie Knife

Former Texas Penal Code 1161, in connection with the law of assault with intent to murder, defined daggers and bowie knifes as any knife intended to be worn upon the person, which is capable of inflicting death, and is not commonly known as a pocket knife. In Armendariz v. State, the Court upheld Mr. Armendariz conviction for unlawfully carrying a dagger. It found that the weapon Mr. Armendariz carried, which was slightly over seven inches in length when open, equipped with a double guard, had a blade that locked in place when open and was sharpened on both edges for slightly more than an inch from the point, was a dagger, not a pocketknife.

With the passage of the new law in 2017, Bowie knives, swords, spears, daggers and machetes, all of which have been illegal to carry in Texas for years, became legal so long as the knife blade is no longer than 5 1/2 inches. 

Butterfly Knife

In 2005, in an unpublished decision, the Texas Court of Appeals found, in Cook v. State, that a butterfly knife is a prohibited weapon. The court explained that a butterfly knife is a “hand-operated knuckle knife that consists of two handles attached to opposing sides of a blade.  However, because the law which made switchblade knives illegal was repealed in 2013, butterfly knives are now legal to own in Texas.

Knife Laws Relating to Minors

According to Chapter 46 of the Texas Penal Code, it is also forbidden for any person under the age of 18 to possess knives with blades longer than 5.5″ in length. It is a crime for a person under the age of 18 to intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carry on or about his or her person a location-restricted knife.

If the minor is under the direct supervision of their parent or legal guardian, they can use the knife on the person’s own property. Other exceptions include if the knife is being used for legal hunting or fishing, or if the person is under the direct supervision of their parent or legal guardian.

Restrictions on Carry

• See CONCLUSION below

Carry restrictions do not apply to a person’s own vehicle or a vehicle that is under their control, as long as the weapon is being carried for a lawful purpose.

Definition of Blade

In Rainer v. State, Mr. Rainer was charged with unlawfully carrying a weapon for having a large hunting knife concealed on his person when he was arrested at a lounge for failing to appear in Court the Texas Appellate Court held that blade as defined in the dictionary as the cutting part of a knife, not the sharpened part. Therefore, the blade of a knife was the part of the knife from the handle to tip and not just the sharpened portion. 

Texas “Location Restricted” Knife Laws

§ 46.01.  Definitions

In this chapter:

(6) “Location-restricted” means a knife with a blade over five and one-half inches.

(7) “Knife” means any bladed hand instrument that is capable of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by cutting or stabbing a person with the instrument.

Texas Penal Code § 46.03 entitled “Places Weapons Prohibited” regulates location restricted knives and provides in relevant part:

A person commits an offense if he intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly possesses or goes with a location restricted knife (on the premises of a business that has a permit or license issued under state law if

  • the business derives 51 percent or more of its income from the sale or service of alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption.
  • on the premises where a high school, collegiate, or professional sporting event or interscholastic event is taking place unless the person is a participant in the event and a location-restricted knife is used in the event. 
  • On the premises of a correctional facility. 
  • On the premises of a hospital licensed under state law or nursing home licensed under state law unless the person has written authorization of the hospital or nursing facility administration, as appropriate. 
  • On the premises of a mental hospital as defined by state law, unless the person has written authorization of the mental hospital administration. 
  • in an amusement park. 
  • On the premises of a church, synagogue, or other established place of religious worship).

Under the literal language of the law, certain people are at risk of arrest for using ordinary implements of the job, such as gardeners at an educational institution or church or synagogue using knives to trim vegetation or cooks using knives to prepare food in locations where 51% of the income came from liquor sales, or on campus.

Brandishing or otherwise displaying a location-restricted knife in one of the restricted places listed above can result in a Class C misdemeanor (or a third-degree felony if carrying in a bar)

Interestingly, it is entirely possible for an individual to get arrested for a misdemeanor offense, forget that he has a weapon on his person, such as a knife, and, as soon as he crossed the threshold of the jail, be guilty of the offense of possession of a prohibited weapon in a penal institution. 

Similarly, an individual serving a “work release” sentence could enter the jail with a knife used at his work and be guilty of possession of a weapon in jail or penal institution. 

Another scenario to be aware of is you could be entering a courthouse for a court date with a knife with a blade of over five and one-half inches and you forgot you had the knife on you.  You could then be arrested for possession of a weapon in a prohibited place. (Tx. Penal Code § 46.03 – – a crime to possess a weapon at school, polling place, government office, racetrack, or airport)).

A cleanup bill to remove these troublesome location restrictions passed the Senate in 2019.   However, the bill ended up dying in the House when the session ended without a vote on Bill.

It passed the House this year (2021), but the bill is now stalled in the Senate State Affairs Committee. Hopefully, the bill will ultimately pass.  See Important Knife Reform Bottled up by Texas Senate State Affairs Committee (HB 956), 2021 WLNR 16635956

Can Local Knife Ordinances Be More Strict Than Texas Law?

In 2015 Knife Law Preemption was enacted, invalidating all local knife ordinances more restrictive than Texas state law,  Therefore, local knife ordinances are ineffective if they are more strict than state laws passed by the Texas Legislature.

Conclusion on Texas Knife Laws

Effective September 1, 2017, a House Bill (HB 1935) put forth by Rep. John Frullo has been enacted and it has significantly reduced restrictions on what was one of the toughest laws pertaining to knife use in the country.  you can check out the entire bill here (which outlines in detail the places it is not legal to carry a location-restricted knife:

HTTPS://LEGISCAN.COM/TX/TEXT/HB1935/2017

There is no “illegal knives” clause outlining daggers, stilettos, dirks, swords, spears and Bowie knives.  It has been removed, though knives that include a set of knuckles in the handle will remain illegal – see Sec. 46.05(2) of the Penal Code.

To summarize (and save you the hassle of wading through tons of statues), here’s what you need to know in the big picture:

Knives with knuckles (see above) and tomahawks (see – Sec. 46.01 (1)) are not legal to carry in Texas.  Anyone under the age of 18 (or over), can carry a knife less than 5.5 inches in length nearly anywhere.  If you’re under 18, you can only carry a knife with a blade over 5.5 inches under certain conditions like for example, you’re accompanied by an adult or you’re at home or on your way home.  However, any adult can carry any knife over 5.5 inches anywhere other than certain restricted locations (see above).  There are some restrictions on locations (hence the term “location-restricted knives”).  You can’t carry any “location-restricted” knife (blade over 5.5 inches in length) to the following locations:

• Schools and on any passenger transportation vehicle of a school

• Polling Places

• Courthouses

• Airports past Security Screening (all knives are already prohibited by TSA)

• Racetracks

• Within 1,000 feet of the premises where an Execution is being conducted, if posted

• Sporting Events (high school, collegiate or professional sporting event or interscholastic sporting event)

• Correctional Facilities

• Hospitals

• Nursing Homes

• Mental Hospitals

• Amusement Parks

• Churches, Synagogues, and Established Places of Worship.

Sources

• Tex. Penal Code § 46.01 (2017)

• Tex. Penal Code § 46.02 (2017)

• Tex. Penal Code § 46.05 (2017)

• Rainer v. State, 763 S.W.2d 615 (Tex. App. 1989)

• Smith v. State, 1988 Tex. App. (Tex. App. 1988)

• Albert v. State, 659 S.W.2d 41 (Tex. App. 1983)

• Armendariz v. State, 396 S.W.2d 132 (Tex. Crim. App. 1965)

• Cook v. State, 2005 Tex. App. LEXIS 3053

• HB 01935 Tex. Penal Code

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540 thoughts on “Texas Knife Laws”

  1. It is sad to think that Jim Bowie was in possession of an illegal knife. Sounds like the Court might have sided with Santa Ana.

    Reply
  2. So simple, why then does the article at the top state that throwing stars are LEGAL, then in the Albert Vs. Texas states they are ILLEGAL. Plus it goes on to elaborate why throwing stars are illegal in carry, or conceal.
    Simple is not here.

    Reply
  3. Texas law changes on September 1st. A lot of those definitions change. Also switchblades etc. will be legal. Can’t find link but law just signed by Governor Perry in the last month.

    Reply
  4. Heller. The right of self-defense is a Right since the cave man days and a rock v. spear.
    recklessly is the key word. Castle Doctrine is in effect. In the words of King Leonidas, “Molon Labe.”

    Reply
  5. In reading the article on Texas knife laws, it states that it is “Illegal to Own” a switchblade, among a few other knife types. Later, state law (Section 46.02 Unlawful Carrying Weapons) is quoted that possibly is the genesis of this statement. I’ve read this law myself and want to point out that it doesn’t state that a switchblade (and other cited knife types) are illegal to “own”, rather it states that they are illegal to “carry”. I think that is an important distinction and while there may be another law that declares a switchblade illegal to own, I don’t believe the cited law states that.

    Reply
  6. The thing to remember in Texas is that state law does not overrule local laws where knives are concerned. Your legal knife can become illegal by simply crossing a city or county boundary.

    Reply
    • After Sept 1 2015 Texas knife preemption goes into effect. Local ordinances can go pound sand after that. Suck it San Antonio!

      Reply
  7. Texas Switchblade laws have changed – Effective SEPTEMBER 1, 2013! Check the Texas.gov website for legal description(s) on carrying — I do not want to errantly tell you what the new laws are. Certain Texas city/municipalities – like San Antonio, still outlaw them. Beware local jurisdictions! You could, in Texas, always OWN/COLLECT switchblades & OTF’s (Out The Front) knives. You just cound not carry them!

    Reply
    • There is no “legal” definition of a Bowie knife in Texas law. What gets you in trouble is that the traditional Bowie has a second sharpened blade. Keep the top end of the blade dull (false edge) and you are carrying a clip point knife. Keep blade under 5.5″ and you are good to go.

      Reply
      • I always thought the Bowie knife was a knife with the stabbing guard – a plate or cover at the base, so when you stab someone, your hand can not slide past the handle, onto the blade.

        Reply
  8. Up to a five and a half inch fixed blade knife is legal to carry in texas. Switchblade laws and gravity knife laws are simply playing on stupid semantics. I was carjacked by a guy with a commercial steak knife once. Plastic handle pointed serrated blade about $5 for a pack of 10. Beaurocrats are pure ignoramus’.

    Reply
    • Yeah, 5.5 inch blades are safe, but they become dangerous once they become longer than that.

      Politicians are dumb.

      Reply
  9. Single edged blade of 5.5 inches or less is legal to carry, folding or not. New changes in laws on automatics, so check if carrying those.

    Reply
  10. Armendariz v. State, 396 S.W.2d 132 (Tex. Crim. App. 1965) says that a dagger is a knife sharpened on both sides, and daggers are illegal.

    Reply
  11. Last that I heard, it is legal to openly carry a fixed blade knife with a blade length of less than six inches. I shall, and should recommend that we all check for any/all law changes since Perry has been in-house for such a long time. I have a good friend, looks like an old time mountain man, carries a knife within a sheath on his belt, less than six inches blade, everywhere that he goes daily. Never been messed with. This entire restrictiveness disgusts me. Texas! My home state, but talk about paranoid.

    Reply
      • unless you have CHL!!!!!!!! THEN you can carry just about anything. penal code 46.15
        YOU CAN CARRY A SWORD, A FREAKING MACE, ANY BATON, TOMAHAWK, MACHETE.
        You just have to have your CHL license and also your handgun on you!!! Just found this out!!! CHL cop instructer either didn’t know this or failed to mention. I’m getting a bowie knife, samauri sword, expandable baton……I’m not sure about a battle axe, however but it doesn’t say you can’t!!!!!!! I would print out the penal code and put it in your wallet tho. ;-}

        Reply
  12. Anthony/Will/Anyone else – Blade length and sharpened edges, not overall length, is what matters per Texas law, as of today.

    ANY single-edge knife with a BLADE length of 5.5″ or less is legal to carry, openly or concealed, in Texas.

    As of 01 Sept 2013, switchblades, balisongs and gravity knives became legal to carry in Texas, as long as they meet the other criteria for being legal to carry – 5.5″ max BLADE length AND SINGLE edge.

    No where in the Texas Penal Code is a “gravity knife” specifically prohibited to be owned. The only place in the Texas Penal Code that the words “gravity” and “knife” appear in the same place is in the definition of a switchblade knife and even then they were not prohibited from ownership, just public carry.

    Reply
    • It is possible to throw any knife but a throwing knife is only a knife that is more specifically designed to be thrown unlike other knifes that aren’t meant to be thrown.

      Reply
  13. As far as throwing stars are concerned it is legal to OWN one, however it is illegal to CARRY one. I’m just glad butterfly knives are back on the menu.

    Reply
    • yeah I agree with you because its stupid that you can own them but you can’t carry them with because I carry my knife for self defense……then why the hell do they let us own them? like wtf

      Reply
      • A knife for self defense is almost always a horrible idea. Unless you are trained with a karambit, most knives are useless unless they also have a knife. Who robs someone with a knife you ask? No one.

        Reply
        • it doesn’t matter if it is a horrible idea or not. if i feel more safe carrying a sword, spear, ax, or numerous knives, then why should i be able to. most people who carry around a pistol aren’t trained in them. they only think that having one should at least scare the robbers away. and FYI, there are more stabbings than shootings because knives are easier to get than guns, so apparently a lot of people try to rob with knives rather than guns.

          Reply
          • Show me a shred of evidence that proves what you just said. A karambit is a fighting knife for martial arts. A pistol does not really require training. If we let people do whatever they wanted to because it made them feel safe, by that standard many people would have mounted weapons on their vehicals. This Isnt mad Max, and it’s not Rambo. This is the real world, as sad as it is we have to deal with that fact.

          • listen bro, if you have ever shot a gun before, which im assuming you have then you know dang well that you need about as much training to use one as you do to use a longbow, point and shoot. you probably need more training in the maintenance of the weapon than actually using the weapon. as far as doing whatever you want. i dont see anywhere in my previous comment that says anything about doing what you want unless you are talking about me feeling more safe with a knife than a gun. if that is the case, then i can see what you are coming from, but we are just talking about melee weapons and ranged weapons, not siege weapons are military grade weapons which should be left to the military. and dont even start with that whole real world bull. the world can be changed as it has been numerous times in the past, that realization you are talking about is just giving up because you are tired of trying. if that is the case then i see no reason for our convo to continue. i eagerly await the next person who wishes to debate.

        • I carry a knive….well I always have a variety of knives at hand and I’d go for it a hell of a lot quicker than I would the 38 I got

          Reply
      • I guess they think that if you have a Bowie knife you should just frame it above your fireplace.

        This state was settled by people carrying Bowie knives. I wonder if the dadgumb Texas legislature understands that.

        Reply
    • unless you have CHL!!!!!!!! THEN you can carry just about anything. penal code 46.15
      YOU CAN CARRY A SWORD, A FREAKING MACE, ANY BATON, TOMAHAWK, MACHETE.
      You just have to have your CHL license and also your handgun on you!!! Just found this out!!! CHL cop instructor either didn’t know this or failed to mention.I’m not sure about a battle axe, however but it doesn’t say you can’t!!!!!!! I would print out the penal code and put it in your wallet tho. ;-}

      Reply
      • There is literally a section titled “butterfly knives” that explicitly states that they are now legal. Presumably only the length restriction applies.
        “Butterfly Knife
        In 2005, in an unpublished decision, the Texas Court of Appeals found, in Cook v. State, that a butterfly knife fell within the statutory definition of a switchblade, and was therefore illegal to possess or carry. However, because the law which made switchblade knives illegal was repealed in 2013, BUTTERFLY KNIVES ARE NOW LEGAL TO OWN IN TEXAS” … unless I’m missing something else.

        Reply
    • Gray area. Lawful use, sure, but if you’re carrying a kitchen knife on your belt and not wearing a chef outfit it looks highly suspect. Keep it in your mess kit and it’s probably ok. In any case I suggest consulting with your local Sheriff’s office if you plan on carrying one around.

      Reply
  14. I carry a open blade knife everywhere I go.with it in the same sheath is also a locking type folding knife.san antonio laws confuse me couse they say I can’t carry eather one.now I was at denny’s a police officer asked if he could see my knifes I did so.he and his partner both said they liked my knives handed them back.i don’t git it . confusing

    Reply
  15. HI I have a question. Is it legal for me to carry my foot long K-Bar in my truck. I had someone tell me that in their conceal carry class it was said that it is illegal to have anything over 5.5″ in your car or on your person. If any of you know Texas state law or could tell me how to find it I would be greatfull.

    Reply
    • Texas Knife Laws
      Texas knife laws are mostly found in the Court’s decisions, or case law, as the statutes are short and do not provide much information about what any of the terms mean. This article summarizes the case law and the statutes so that anyone can understand what is legal and what is not when it comes to owning and carrying knives in the state of Texas.
      What is Legal to Own
      It is legal to own throwing stars or any type of throwing knife
      It is legal to own dirks, daggers, stilettos, and other stabbing knives
      It is legal to own a bowie knife
      It is legal to own a sword or spear
      It is legal to own a switchblade knife
      It is legal to own a pocketknife
      It is legal to own a Balisong, or butterfly knife

      Reply
        • § 46.02. Unlawful Carrying Weapons

          (a) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries on

          or about his or her person a handgun, illegal knife, or club if the person is not:

          (1) on the person’s own premises or premises under the person’s control; or

          (2) inside of or directly en route to a motor vehicle or watercraft that is owned by the person or under the person’s control….

          § 46.01. Definitions

          In this chapter:

          …..(6) “Illegal knife” means a:

          (A) knife with a blade over five and one-half inches;

          (B) hand instrument designed to cut or stab another by being thrown;

          (C) dagger, including but not limited to a dirk, stiletto, and poniard;

          (D) bowie knife;

          (E) sword; or

          (F) spear.

          (7) “Knife” means any bladed hand instrument that is capable of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by cutting or stabbing a person with the instrument

          basically if it counts as an illegal knife you cant carry it unless its in your home or in your vehicle/going towads your vehicle, also handguns and clubs apply this as well. in the article it defines an illegal knife that you cant carry, so as long as the blade is within those parameters your should be fine (Ex: A butterfly knife can be carried as long as its not a double edged dagger or longer than 5 1/2 inches or designed to be thrown) might still want to check in with local authorities (local laws vary) and have the laws at hand just in case. might be wrong

          Reply
    • not with a CHL. THAT ALLOWS YOU TO CARRY ANYTHING but maybe not a gravity knife. what’s the deal with gravity knives? who wants one of those? why are they illegal?

      Reply
    • As of September 1st of 2015 a law was passed in the Texas State Legislature that state laws concerning knives supersede ALL laws of county and city or principality. San Antonio’s archaic weapons laws just became null and void. They can no longer pass any weapons laws which are more restrictive than State laws. Check it out.

      Reply
  16. Carry restrictions do not apply to a person’s own vehicle or a vehicle that is under their control, as long as the weapon is being carried for a lawful purpose.

    Reply
      • Uh yes sir it does.

        PC §46.15. NON-APPLICABILITY. (b) Section 46.02 does not apply to a person who:
        (6) is carrying a concealed handgun and a valid license issued under Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code, to carry a concealed handgun

        There for granting Immunity to § 46.02 as long as the person is carrying their handgun and their license.
        I can go into more story time reading if you would like or you could read it yourself.

        https://www.txdps.state.tx.us/internetforms/Forms/CHL-16.pdf

        Reply
          • Are you still arguing this point??? There it is, Written in the state law. allow me to drive it home for you. I am a cc holder, and I have discussed this with my attorney. Guess what? He showed me the same thing I just Posted! Concealed Carry license makes you Immune to § 46.02 as long as you are carrying your license and concealed handgun. <— Educated, proven, and legally binding fact.

        • That was my understanding, too. It’s what the law says, so I’m not sure how it can be misinterpreted. It’s pretty plainly written.

          Reply
        • you are so awesome for knowing this and sharing. time to finally start carrying some freaking ninja stars boooyyyeeeeee!!!!!!

          Reply
  17. I don’t see a karambit listed among the illegal weapons (or weapons you can’t carry.) Since it’s not a stabbing weapon, is a karambit legal to carry concealed? The blade’s only about 3 1/2 inches.

    Reply
  18. Hatchets, Hand-Axes and Machetes are legitimate camp and yard tools and even a homeless vagabond, who owns no vehicle, should be allowed to carry such inside their pack. … If a tool has a legitimate peaceful use, such as an 8 inch Chef’s Knife or an 18″ Machete, then, ANY citizen should be allowed to have and carry that tool inside personal luggage, in a back-pack, on a motorcycle, etc. … Basically, guilt and threat are assumed in advance of any violent act. … This is PRE-CRIME and it is NOT CONSTITUTIONAL !!

    Reply
    • unless you have CHL!!!!!!!! THEN you can carry just about anything. penal code 46.15

      YOU CAN CARRY A SWORD, A FREAKING MACE, ANY BATON, TOMAHAWK, MACHETE.

      You just have to have your CHL license and also your handgun on you!!! Just found this out!!! CHL cop instructer either didn’t know this or failed to mention. I’m getting a bowie knife, samauri sword, expandable baton……I’m not sure about a battle axe, however but it doesn’t say you can’t!!!!!!! I would print out the penal code and put it in your wallet tho. ;-}

      Reply
          • If you read section 46.15, it specifies that if you have an LTC/CHL, you may only be carrying a handgun.
            “(6) is carrying:

            (A) a license issued under Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code, to carry a handgun; and

            (B) a handgun:

            (i) in a concealed manner; or

            (ii) in a shoulder or belt holster;”

          • “(b) Section 46.02 does not apply to a person who…” It doesn’t say I can only carry a handgun. It says 46.02 doesn’t apply if I’m legally carrying.

    • You can own almost any knife you want, besides a gravity knife. You just can’t open/conceal carry. Hell, just keep the knife you’re not allowed to carry in your car.

      Reply
      • it just sucks to me that Texas says all the tie it prides itself on the right to bear arms, yet has the most restrictions on civil rights I have seen, 5 1/2″ blade length? Really? I mean I don’t want to carry around a machete unless I am bush whacking through forest. But do you know how hard it to find a good knife that is full tang with a blade 5 1/2″ of shorter? I do a lot of survival stuff and a knife that short is pretty much useless. I did find a knife set that I just got that was ok, but still not what I want to carry. Its a Shrade set of a full tang and a folding knife set: COM5CP High Carbon IS THE SET that included a Schrade – SCH002 – Folding knife with a 3 1/2″ blade and the Schrade – SCHF29 – Fixed Blade at 5″ blade that comes with the holder that carries both of them. They are pretty nice knives. Its kind of a heavy knife to use but still I would not want to try to bush whack with it too much here. Self defense? Mmm Maybe?

        Reply
        • Concealed Carry license makes you Immune to § 46.02 as long as you are carrying your license and ccw i just keep reposting. can you believe it?!! funny thing is California allows to carry ANY blade openly. weeiirrdd.

          Reply
  19. And you just landed yourself in prison. Legal terms you were in fear of severe bodily harm and lawfully used your knife to stop the threat. You’re welcome.

    Reply
  20. As of September 1st of 2015 a law was passed in the Texas State Legislature that state laws concerning knives supersede ALL laws of county and city or principality. San Antonio’s archaic weapons laws just became null and void. They can no longer pass any weapons laws which are more restrictive than State laws. Check it out.

    Reply
  21. so, im confused. Is it illegal to own a blade(machete, knife, kukri, sword, ect.) over 5 inches or is it illegal to carry it publicly?

    Reply
  22. Okay, quick question i own a 13″ heavy blade full tang Bowie knife i frequently carry this knife on my hunting trips as it is shorter than a machete but has the weight to cut small tree limbs and brush as i need to. I know the law states that i am not allowed to open carry this knife. My question is am i allowed to carry this knife in the function of a tool while hunting?

    Reply
    • Section 46.15 subsection (b) lists several things that makes 46.02 not apply. One is having a CHL and your handgun on your person. Another is hunting, fishing etc. You should be good to go.

      Reply
  23. Where does the penal code describe “ILLEGAL & PROHIBITED?” All I’ve been able to find is 46.01 which defines “Illegal Knife” and 46.02 which prohibits carrying them. 46.15(b) makes 46.02 non-applicable to CHL holders that also have their handguns with them.

    Reply
  24. What is the point 🙂 ? In Texas you can legally open carry a loaded assault rifle or any long gun for that matter without needing any special license. Activist groups even walked in the state capital carrying these weapons to prove their point 🙂 ! They should cut out the knife restrictions. Government can get whacky at times. In Austin an adult can drive 70 miles per hour on a motorcycle without a helmet but if he gets on a bicycle he must wear a helmet. Stupid laws. http://www.texastribune.org/2015/01/13/gun-rights-activists-cause-stir-texas-capitol/

    Reply
    • No such thing as an assault rifle. The military uses the term to describe some of their weapons. An “assault rifle”, by military definition, is not available to the public.

      Reply
    • No such thing as an assault rifle. That’s a term the military started to describe the rifles they carry. Still not an assault rifle, even if it’s military.

      Reply
  25. -you cant carry a gravity knife around!
    but its spring assisted.
    -Oh… Then my bad, you’re good
    yayy 😀

    You can’t carry a throwing knife around!
    – But its a tacti-cool survival paracord handle knife
    Oh… My bad, you’re good
    – Yayy 😀

    Reply
  26. The definition of switchblade knife above includes knives opening by gravity, so why are gravity knives illegal. What am I not understanding. Thanks.

    Reply
    • Yes. Although if you are taking it out, it better be in defense or using it as a tool.
      Although it must be single edged.

      Reply
    • as long as the “Blade” (Texas Appellate Court held that blade was defined in the dictionary as the cutting part of a knife, not the sharpened part. Therefore, the blade of a knife was the part of the knife from the handle to tip, and not just the sharpened portion.) IS LESS THAN 5 & 1/2 INCHES

      Reply
    • You can own and carry that knife in public, yes, if it’s not a throwing star/knife, dagger, sword, or bowie knife. As for drawing it that’s less of knife related laws and more into other laws. Like showing it off to a friend is ok, waving it around in a store however could lead to assault or brandishing charges. Be careful when/where you draw it in public. Way I look at it is I treat it like a firearm on when/where to show it off and when/where to keep it put away.

      Reply
    • This is massively out of date.
      As of 01SEP17, everything is legal. period. If you are under 18, sucks to be you. Thos who are over, anything under 5.5 inches is legal to carry everywhere within the state. Anything over, basically, follow the LTC restrictions. So, you can’t carry a sword into a school or bar, but you can carry one into a park or on school grounds but outside the building. Rule is by the blade, so a if you want to bring a 5ft spear with a 4inch blade into a courtroom, you are legal.

      There are more rules than what I listed, but generally, the above is accurate.

      Reply
    • Doubt it… I mean I’m a minor and a scout (in Texas) and our instructors tell us that the only time it is right for us to carry our knives is on campouts or other BSA events.

      Reply
    • There’s no laws regarding minors and knife possession according to this. That being said don’t get in trouble with it, being a minor could get you in legal trouble regarding other laws if you’re doing anything illegal with it.

      Reply
    • Illegal in Texas to carry, concealed or open, as its over 5 1/2 inches. Doesn’t matter after that.
      You can own it, and have it on your property or have it in transit from your car or boat to your house. Outside of that, big no no.

      Reply
    • If you have an excuse to have it, it can be considered a tool. Just be careful. I got pulled over in my work Truck, and the officer said it’s fine considering it was in my tool box and such, but I was once pulled over in my personal truck and almost got an illegal weapons charge. They ended up confiscating it.

      Reply
    • I think a machete is considered a machete. From what I’ve read, it never said anything about machetes, which I would think would be a legal loophole.

      Reply
  27. We can carry a gun but not a Bowie knife? You can open carry an unloaded AR or an AK but not a Bowie? Ridiculous.

    Reply
    • there are no requirements that long guns be unloaded while carried in texas. you may carry a long gun legally, loaded or not.
      however, you should expect to be harassed by local police if you carry it around public or public access areas.

      Reply
    • You can carry a LOADED AR or AK legally in Texas, but not a Bowie knife. The knife made famous by a man that died at the Alamo.

      Reply
    • Technically states and cities have no authority to restrict arms in any way. The U.S. Constitution says the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infinged, PERIOD. Anything that hinders your ability to form a militia and maintain a free state is an infringement, and knives can be an effective type of arms in maintaning a free state.

      Before anybody claims that is federal law only I want to point out that it does not state or imply the restricton on just congress as the 1st Amendment does, and Article 6 Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution indicates if there is a conflict between a valid federal law (such as the 2nd Amendment) and a state law, then the tate law is not with standing.

      Reply
    • I believe it stated you could carry a knife greater than the 5.5 inches as long as it wasn’t on restricted property schools airports etc. . If your from Texas just think about Renn fest the folks attending & working walk around with swords . Just stay clear of the gov. Property

      Reply
  28. Dixie Zapata, a machete is just a machete, and is illegal to carry in public, but if your camping or something like that, it is legal as long as it is used properly.

    Reply
  29. (Yes you can. Anything , other than a dagger, within 5 1/2″ from tip of blade to the handle material. If you are out in public.).. If it’s private property or property under your control you can carry anything other than a gravity knife.

    Reply
  30. I’m 17 soon to be 18 and i have a knife above 5 1/2 inches . if I have it sheathed can I carry it around ?

    Reply
  31. I’ve read through the entire article, and it is still unclear to me. Under the butterfly knife section it says that it is legal to own the knife, but i’d just like to be clear on the subject. I want to know if it is legal to openly carry a butterfly knife in Texas. I also read through the restrictions on openly carrying and it doesn’t mention butterfly knifes. I would also like sources in the subject backing the answer if it isn’t too much trouble.

    Reply
  32. A machete is a sqord, a bowie under 5.5in is legal to carry, and you can have a bowie knife hunting as long as it’s in your car or a bag (not on your person). If you are under 18 in the state of TX it is illegal for you to carry any type of weapon.

    Reply
  33. No matter the age the blade must be under 5 1/2 inches. A machete cannot be open carried. Anything that does not fit the restrictions may be carried in private property either owned by you or in your control.

    Reply
  34. I have an exact 5 1/2 in.knife with a sheathe can I open carry this knife in public places like Walmart or grocery stores,or restaurants?

    Reply
  35. Is it Legal to carry by pocket clip and by sheath Tops Buck CSAR-T When in a sheath I leave it open. I do not use the sheath that came with it.

    Reply
  36. So the blade can not be over 5 and a half but can the hole knife total can? Say I have a knife that is 7 inches total and the blade is 5 and half. Is that legal?

    Reply
  37. 2nd amendment applies to knifes not just guns, everyone seems to forget about the 2nd when it comes to knifes, it’s interesting to note that the one constitutional right that says in the last sentence “shall not be infringed”. Is a restricted right, wonder what would happen if your local government restricted how you go to church, or your speech, or the 4th unreasonable search and siezure, wait that one is abused as well, hmmm.

    Reply
  38. I live in texas. Is it legal for congres to ban fixed blade knives or just knives in general. Or is it more of a state thing, appretate it yall.

    Reply
  39. Do the license to carry a handgun also pertain to some of the “illegal” knives listed?
    For instance, if I have my LTC in Texas, could I also then carry a concealed Bowie knife or knife with a blade longer than 5.5″?

    Just a curiosity driven by discussions I’ve seen on other forums about CCW laws…

    Thanks,

    Reply
    • i would like to know the answer to tis also. i have an LTC. my daughter gave me a Biuck 119 for christmas a few years ago which has a 6″ blade . so why is it legal for me to carry a .45 in my pocket but not a 6″ blade ????

      Reply
    • That’s a NEGATIVE Ghost Rider. In other words no. CHL/HL respects only handguns not edged knives weapons. Also, reference pending constitutional amendment H.B. No. 195

      Reply
    • Just in case you never found an answer to this question, no your ccl (concealed carry licence) will not cover and or protect any knife listed as illegal in the state of Texas.

      Reply
    • Look at your license. Does it say “License to Carry a Concealed Knife”? I’m pretty sure it does not.
      The license means exactly what it says – it is a license to carry a concealed handgun. Period.

      Reply
    • If I’m not mistaken, it doesn’t matter what kind of knife or sword it is. As long as it doesn’t have the closed knuckle handle, and as long as you are over the age of 18, it does not require any licensing.

      Reply
    • According to a handgun instructor I took a class from, as of 1/1/16, you can carry a illegal knife with you but you must have your ltc PLUS your firearm. I’m a member of Texas Law Shield and I talked to one of their attorneys but they stated that there has not been a test case yet. Texas penal code 46.15 non applicability , meaning that Tx penal code 46.02 and 46.03, the two parts of the law that defines an illegal weapon and says you can’t carry one. Google texas penal code 46.15 and scroll way on down to (b) section 46.02 :does not apply to a person who: (6) is caring (a) is carring a license issued under subchapter H and (b) a handgun. I talked to a neighborhood cop and he was not aware of the change and as ther was no test case it depends on wether you would like to play the guinea pig. Please pass this along for feedback. thanks

      Reply
  40. 5.5 and under is ok. I carry a blade with a length. Of 5.450 in. Cop tried to get me for it… I had him pull up the tx laws on knifes and he measured it he looked it over said it was a nice knife handed it back to me an told me to have a nice day

    Reply
  41. My old combat knife is 5.9 inches, and I am also homeless, for tool and self protection purposes, would the .4 in difference make it I legal to carry

    Reply
  42. The law was created by racists who wanted to have good reason to arrest Mexicans, whom the Texas legislators believed to be knife-wielding maniacs. (Some Emergency Room staff in certain areas of Texas may not disagree, on certain full-moon Saturday nights). I asked an old Texas lawyer when I was younger, which I no longer am, how in the world that law came to be in Texas. He said, “Son, that law isn’t meant for you, the Law was passed for Mexicans.” The Law now likes to use this whenever convenient to put more charges on anyone they don’t like. Just like all the other unnecessary and politically-motivated laws on the books. Welcome to tyranny (the arbitrary application of laws to promote the desires of the ruling class over the weak, which is you if you are reading this.)

    Reply
  43. It’s probably best this way..

    Considering all the illegal Mexicans in Texas, I can understand the tighter knife rules the state enforces.

    Reply
  44. If you are hunting, you can carry a blade above 5 1/2 inches. I have been stopped while hunting by game wardens, for licence checks and such, and I routinely carry a 9 inch Bowie. I have never once had them tell me I was in violation, and in my opinion, game wardens are the strictest on matters like this.

    Reply
  45. Sec. 46.15. NONAPPLICABILITY.
    (b) Section 46.02 does not apply to a person who:
    (6) is carrying:
    (A) a license issued under Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code, to carry a handgun; and
    (B) a handgun:
    (i) in a concealed manner; or
    (ii) in a shoulder or belt holster;

    Reply
  46. You can carry a loaded AR and AK with a round in the chamber and on firealmost anywhere in Texas with only a few restrictions but some of that is not good common sense.
    When I go on Open Carry wslks eith Open Carry Texas I carry loaded, Chambered with Safety on.
    If we have s large group we encourage no chambered round.

    Reply
  47. A machete would probably be considered a sword or a knife with over 5″ of blade. Either way you probably can’t get away with carrying it on you off of your property.

    Reply
    • I have actually walked amongst game wardens around TPNL lake with a machete around my waste. They did not bat an eye about it. Though game wardens tend to be more lenient when it comes to stuff like that. They see a machete as a tool at first glance and not a weapon, especially when you are in a area with a LOT of cattails. I would not recommend doing that in front of a cop.

      What I’m getting at is as long as you are in the right enviorment with a machete ( heavy brush areas and what not) and not walking into town with one, you should be good.

      Reply
    • The artical clearly states there is no illegal knife, dagger, sword and has the off limits places listed. If it could only be legal to carry at home then the list would not mention all the places you cant carry a knife. It would state the only place you can possess it, which would be your house.

      Reply
    • 5.5 is the length of the Blade not the entire knife with handle included… which is from where the steel of the blade starts to tip 5.5 When describing your knife always use the blade length NOT the entire length ,,It gets an incorrect answer,as some blades can have a 5 inch handle, and a 4 inch blade this is less than 5.5 blade… but if you say 8 inch knife someone will think your blade is 8 inch..

      Reply
  48. Can I carry a knife that has a blade length over 51/2″ long in the glove box of my car while traveling in texas? How long of a blade can I keep stored in my car?
    Thanks for info. I can not afford a lawyer to interpret law for me.

    Reply
  49. So let me get this straight, it’s legal to Cary a gun but not a throwing knife? I’m gonna have to call bull, because of the fact that a knife takes skill while a gun takes no skill. Yet we are still able to carry a gun than a simple throwing knife? These guys need to rethink their laws a little bit more, I mean if they are allowing pistols out in public why not throwing knives?

    Reply
  50. I noticed a comment about carrying a long knife in you vehicle (what if you just purchased it or taking it to someone?) My question is a motorcycle also a vehicle and can I strap my machete across my back while I ride my bike?

    Reply
  51. Where in Texas Penal Code does it say that possession/carrying of a gravity knife is illegal? Several sites about knives say this but none quote what the law says. Thanks!

    Reply
  52. In addition to being a long knife, a Bowie is a double edged knife. That is the bottom of the blade is sharp and so is part of the top. A knife that looks like a Bowie in profile is called a clippoint knife and if it is legal length , single edged it is legal.

    Reply
  53. I have carried a machete in my work truck for years, and sometimes around neighborhoods walking up and down roads, or other people’s properties, but I’m also a land surveyor and it is a tool we need. So If your are working or look like you are you shouldn’t ever have an issue.

    Reply
  54. “The Bowie Knife,” Illegal to Carry in Texas. Now let’s remember that it’s only Named after the great Texas Forfather, Pioneer, and Martyr James (Jim) Bowie who selflessly laid down his life, but only after using his knife at the solemnly remembered 13 day siege of the Alamo. A Texas republic free from the oppression of Mexico was his reason for his sacrifice and the 13 days they held out bought just enough time for Sam Houston to See it through. The Bowie knife is a symbol of Texas’ independence cut & dry. Now I’m reasonable enough to understand that “The Bowie” does not have as much practicality for (most and I do say most) 21st-century Texans as it provided in 1836. Regardless of that fact, Texas legislator should not take that lightly! At a minimum Texan should be honored to qualify for a license to carry the knife if they should so choose. I guess we’ll just pay the sales tax (which they certainly won’t hesitate to collect from its namesake). Rest assured, I’m confident they will spend it well. so we’ll just go ahead and keep it in the drawers of our homes or in The glove box of our trucks.. no Trailride in Big Bend I guess. Of course wouldn’t want to make things too confusing for our hard thinking Texas legislators. However, if they do need something to do , why don’t they start by asking Arizona, Alaska ,Arkansas and yes even Old Mexico how they manage to make it work keeping the Bowie Knife legal to carry; in those places you can carry it anywhere, anyhow, and any time you like. “Illegal in Texas” Ok….

    Reply
  55. So, a fixed blade skinning knife with a full tang, such as a shrade 152, even though the sharpened end of the blade is less than 5 inches, would be considered illegal to carry?

    Reply
  56. My question is on a knife that has the Emerson wave feature from research and looking into laws I would assume it is OK to have on person but wanted to ask to be sure

    Reply
  57. Is there a permit that allows you to carry a concealed Bowie knife in Texas and if there is one where can I get it or where can I get more information

    Reply
  58. You can carry LOADED long guns in Texas openly, and there is an exemption in that you CAN carry a longer blade IF engaged in hunting/fishing and the knife is in common use in that sport… I.e. common skining knives, hunting knives, Tex.

    Reply
  59. Texas quit screwing around and fix your knife laws! Why is a double sided blade (dagger) illegal to carry??? Define “Bowie knife”.
    I can carry guns but certain knives are still illegal?? What? Stupid.

    Reply
  60. Machetes are illegal to carry. Defense to prosecution could be if you’re also in possession of other brush clearing / landscaping equipment and it’s a work tool.

    Reply
  61. The law is vague. Defense to prosecution is if the weapon is of a type commonly used in the sporting activity you’re participating in (or have or will). Still, defense means you’ve been arrested and have gone to trial. As pathetic as it may be, you might beat the rap, but you won’t beat the ride.

    Reply
  62. Under 5.5 inches is fine, even to walk into a bank or post office. BTW, the website doesn’t mention that ballistic knives ( with blades that shoot out and depart from the handle) are also illegal, such as the Soviet KGB Foxfire knife.

    Reply
  63. Handgun laws and knife laws don’t seem to overlap, so you may be licensed to carry a handgun, but not an oversized knife. I didn’t say it made sense.

    Reply
  64. Been there, done that. Concealing an oversized knife is really uncomfortable and makes you move funny, thus giving away the fact that you’re concealing it.

    Reply
  65. It seems everyone’s swatting at gnats. Open carry your handgun (with a license), open carry your AR-15, Gerber LMF-II knife, your automatic knife, your bali-song and leave your @!#/ bowie knife at home. At that point, who cares if you can draw out a Crocodile Dundee knife? I doubt the punk with the 9 is going to confront you for your wallet if you’re obviously carrying superior firepower.

    Reply
  66. Ok so I’m confused if I want to own swords and all that blade weapons stuff can I own and use them as long as I’m on my property or I’m I’m caught with it in my home will I face charges if I own and use them in my own property?

    Reply
  67. I live in Arizona and carry all sorts of different knives concealed along with my firearm for protection AND because I have that right, I use that right. I’ve never harmed anyone with either and hope I never have to. But I am shocked to see laws like these knife laws which sound like they should come from the city of New York in the great state of Texas. My wife and I were considering moving to Texas, but I can’t move to a place that brags on the constitution and it’s inforcement of it and takes away freedoms such as this. Texas, whose freedoms were partially won by the man who’s name is the name of one of the knives they outlaw for carry? And you can carry a gun concealed? You brothers in Texas need to get these laws changed if for no other reason than to be a state that not only talks about American freedoms but backs them up by action.

    Reply
  68. Have about the front knife has a serrated edge and a straight edge and has about 3 1/2 inch long dagger style blade would this be illegal to carry??

    Reply
  69. This is crazy I was raped.
    The rape caused me to miss court on a bogud felony case gor having 3 cold tablets on my medicine cabinet.
    This case was to be dismissed that day.
    I was sentanced to 5 years in prison for failure ti appear in court!
    Had I been able to defend myself Today I could legaly have a knife or hatchet to defend myself.
    My Rapest got off scott free.
    He can carry a knife legally.
    The Irony of it is Now I am not legaly allowed to defend myself from a rapest because I did not have my knife on me to defend myself from a 270 pound man at the time he chose to tape me ! ! !

    Reply
  70. Does “(1) on the person’s own premises or premises under the person’s control” include someone else’s property when they’ve given permission to carry said illegal knife? If I’m at a gun range and they’ve given explicit permission, can I shoot my SKS without removing the (folded) bayonet? My understanding is that bayonet make the carbine into a spear so qualifies as ‘illegal knife’. Have not looked into how to remove as I’d like to leave the carbine in original condition, but given choice would rather not become a felon.

    Reply
  71. Under unlawful carrying weapons, it is not unlawful to carry an illegal knife “(2) inside of or directly en route to a motor vehicle or watercraft that is owned by the person or under the person’s control”
    I ride a motorcycle. There is no inside to my vehicle. Could I strap a knife longer than 5 1/2 inches to it?

    Also,

    “Carry restrictions do not apply to a person’s own vehicle or a vehicle that is under their control, as long as the weapon is being carried for a lawful purpose.”
    What would be a lawful purpose vs unlawful purpose?

    Reply
  72. Im having a hard time defining a bowie knife, i have a fixed blade 5 1/2 in exactly and only one side is the cutting side. It does not have the common tip that can be sharpened.

    Reply
  73. Planning a canoe / camping trip. If I had a machete strapped to my pack, in the boat, would that be considered illegal? Also, where do hatchets fall into this issue?

    Reply
  74. Can you open carry a blunt training sword?That does not have a bladed end to it and can not do SERIOUS bodily injury. But it can be used in self defense.

    Reply
  75. Is a machete in my vehicle considered a knife/sword under TX law? Example – Transporting a machete to my property for thinning out vines and branches.

    The summary of what is legal in Texas does not seem match your own quotes from Texas law. Example – bowie knife discussion.
    What am I missing? Are you distinguishing between “owning” and “carrying”? If so, I believe your web information is misleading most of the general public.

    Clarification is appreciated.

    Reply
  76. No. LTC is guns only. Has zero to do with anything else.

    If you don’t have somebody looking to arrest you, you can carry mist anything. If somebody is looking to arrest you, the laws are so vague that most anything could be arrestable. That said, folders and under 5.5″ fixed are unlikely to launch an arrest.

    The “Bowie” and “dagger” prohibitions are pretty problematic, as it depends on how the person looking to arrest you is squinting that day reading the law book.

    Reply
  77. I know this is a bit of an older post, but I’m hoping someone can answer my question. Could someone please define “gravity knife” specifically in detail and give exames of gravity knives? My question specifically relates to pocket folders with the Emerson wave feature on them. Are they legal in Texas?

    Reply
  78. Can anyone tell me if it’s legal to carry a Karambit now as long as it isn’t over the length limit? I’m looking to get a sheathed Karambit not and folding version, like something I could carry on my waist or strapped to my chest if I’m wearing a jacket. It’s a Curved talon-like blade if anyone doesn’t know.

    Reply
  79. Most of the “Illegal Knife” statutes in Texas have been repealed by the state legislature effective on Sept 1, 2017.

    Reply
  80. what about a saw blade? what about garden shears? how about a butcher knife? or sushi chef knifes? so many reasons for a “blade” to be needed that is over 5.5″.

    Reply
  81. Different cities in Texas often have more restrictive laws, San Antonio, for example, has mush stiffer restrictions on knives than state law.

    Reply
  82. They sell all these so called illegal knives at the flea market, I once got like arrested or something when during my lunch break my co-worker and I went to go see the president Clinton at the airport. We both had knives with belt holsters. Mine had a wood handle​ of a gun it opened to a knife, it was awesome. Some people on golf carts told us to lift up our shirts and told us to get on, took us to a hanger and head of secret service, was Hispanic, interrogated us, at that time I smoked weed and also had some on me. They searched us and our work van, they called our work, let us go, said if we wanted our knives back to call, we said nope.
    Next day at work secretary and everyone laughing said I had gotten someone to call and pretend they were secret service.
    Since then no more knives, just the mini ones or box cutter.

    Reply
  83. The law has changed. House Bill 1935 passed this year and now knives and swords and spears of all types are legal in most places. There are a few restricted spaces, but that all. This goes into effect on September 1st, 2017.

    Reply
  84. I was wondering this as well. I also have my LTC in Texas and just bought a Karambit this is 8 inches in total length, but the blade is only 4 1/4 inches. I suppose this is not legal to conceal carry?

    Reply
  85. This will be changing come Sept 1, 2017. The illegal knife category os being changed to the “location prohibited knife” all “illegal knives are going to be fine to carry concealed or open as long as it’s not in certain areas like bars (51% establishments) and school/college campuses. I think there may be a few others but you can find info easy enough

    Reply
  86. See Texas House Bill 1935–“AN ACT relating to the carrying of certain knives” for an massive update to knife laws. Officially becomes law on September 1, 2017

    Reply
  87. I have a machete in my Jeep for offroad usage – I believe this is legal because I own & control the vehicle, correct ?

    Reply
  88. yayyyyy …. starting September 1 , 2017, in Texas, the 5-1/2″ length rule willl no longer be valid. we will then be able to cary ANY knife, even swords and machettes ….. look it up …. Texas House Bill 1935 …..

    Reply
  89. I don’t think gravity knives are illegal. I’ve looked over the statute and they’re only mentioned in the section with autos, which were legalized in 2013. Also, I’m told by someone who worked on the recent legalization bill that they’re not in fact illegal after 2013.

    Reply
  90. So I bought a knife from Amazon that about half the legal carry limit (~2.5 inches). Can I carry it with me?

    Reply
  91. I’m 16 and I have a tac-force pocket knife it has a spring but it is on the bottom of the blade is it still ok for me to carry around or should I just leave it at home ??????

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  92. This article is incorrect. Gravity knives are legal in Texas. The only mention of a gravity opening knife was in the switchblade description, and switchblades were legalized in 2013.

    As of today, 9/01/17, there are no more “illegal” knives in Texas. The formerly illegal knives are now location restricted, you can even carry swords & machetes – see here for a complete breakdown of restricted locations: https://kniferights.org/hb-1935-bottom-line/

    NOTE: Knives that incorporate “knuckles” as part of the handle (Penal Code Sec. 46.01(8)), such as the iconic Model 1918 WWI Trench Knife and similar, remain illegal to possess in Texas (Penal Code Sec. 46.05(2)).

    NOTE: Tomahawks remain classified as “clubs” (Penal Code Sec. 46.01(1)(D)) that are still illegal to carry (Penal Code Sec. 46.02) in Texas.

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  93. This page needs updating.
    As of Sept 1 2017, we no have removed virtually all restrictions on knives.
    Blunt instruments do still appear to be illegal to carry.

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  94. on september 1, 2017, the knife laws in Texas changed… now we can open carry even swords and spears. apparently the admins on this sight havent noticed that yet ….. google Texas HB 1935 for the new laws…..

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  95. I have a double edged knife under 51/2″ and carry it on my person in a drip dry, handle snap case, on my belt, obvious to anyone with a modicum of intelligence. It is openly displayed not concealed and used as a tool mostly for wire. I live in Pasagitdowndena, Texas. I don’t go in bars or clubs but mostly travel to and fro the job. The blade is 41/2″ from guard to tip, is not balanced for throwing but blade and shank are all one piece extending to 1/16″ past the handle. This is a dive knife and I am a 7 c-card holder by PADI.

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  96. As of September 1, 2017 blades that are over the length of 5 1/2 inches are now legal for open and concealed carry in Texas. There is no age specification for the carry of a blade under 5 1/2 inches but I am unsure about blades over the specified length.

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  97. This needs to be updated with the passing of bill 1935, you can now open carry any size knife, sword, spear, whatever bladed instrument

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  98. This is massively out of date.
    As of 01SEP17, everything is legal. period. If you are under 18, sucks to be you. Those who are over, anything under 5.5 inches is legal to carry everywhere within the state. Anything over, basically, follow the LTC restrictions. So, you can’t carry a sword into a school or bar, but you can carry one into a park or on school grounds but outside the building. Rule is by the blade, so a if you want to bring a 5ft spear with a 4inch blade into a courtroom, you are legal.

    There are more rules than what I listed, but generally, the above is accurate.

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  99. In 1935 Sept 1 2017 did away with illegal knife in texas and substitute location restricted knives… You can now carry any length or any type knife..except automatic knife you want as long as it is not done in certain restricted places…much like a licensed handgun.

    For a complete description refer to Texas hb 1935.

    Complete 180 on Texas knife laws

    Reply
  100. What constitutes a “stabbing knife”? I have an OTF switchblade that has a double-edged, 3 and 1/2 inch blade. I heard that double edged OTF blades are illegal, but since it is a switchblade, and those are legal to carry, where does my knife stand?

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  101. All this info is now outdated. As of September 2nd we can carry anything with an edge, however all blades over 5 and a half inches are location restricted and can’t be carried anywhere you can’t carry a firearm.

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  102. This page needs to be updated. The laws changed in 2017 and became effective September 1, 2017. Suffice to say, there are practically no more illegal knives in Texas, only places where formerly illegal knives can be taken. Also, it was never illegal to own many of the knives listed here. It was illegal to carry them off your own property.

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  103. i’m curious about something. i have this broken knife blade that i like tying in my hair. its about twelve inches long and it was hand sharpened, but it has no handle, its about a half inch wide and it doesnt have any sort of handle, it was part of a dagger that i really liked and it broke, so i started tying the broken blade in my hair to keep it with me, and i was curious, is a broken blade still considered a knife? and if so, what laws would be applicable to it?

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  104. can we get an update for this page, Illegal knife isn’t even in the current law, and there certainly isnt a size restriction anymore

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  105. This page needs to be updated. The law has changed. As of September 1st, 2017, it is now legal for anyone 18 and up to carry blades longer than 5 1/2″, including swords.

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  106. Lots of laws in more than a few states have been passed, relaxing knife restrictions. A recent one in Texas, taking effect back in Sept.’ 17? So, ever update this site? As in ever?

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  107. Effective Sept. 1, 2017, Texas law (HB 1935) eliminated the category of “illegal knives”. In most places, it is now legal to openly carry swords, daggers, knives (of any length), machetes, etc.

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  108. Article needs an update. Blades over 5 1/2 inches are legal for carry, as long as certain guidelines are followed. Also, certain definitions have been changed. Just go and hit CTRL+F and type “knife” for the Texas legal definitions, how and where it’s illegal to carry, etc. http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/PE/htm/PE.46.htm

    There may be local laws that differ. Check your local county and city websites.

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  109. Age restrictions act (assuming the person carrying is intelligent enough to read and seek out advice) to both prevent crime and act as a defence, sometimes,for a party involved in a violent confrontation. Ex.: if there is a 2 party confrontation, and one of the individuals is carrying a legal lenghth knife and the other is in violation of the law, other factors equal, it would tend to sway the self defense claim more towards the person abiding with the law.

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  110. THESE LAWS ARE OUT DATED TEXAS KNIFE LAWS HAVE BEEN REVISED. THERE IS NO LONGER ANY RESTRICTION ON CARRYING LENGTH, SWITCHBLADES ARE LEGAL TO CARRY, SWORDS ARE LEGAL TO CARRY. (Dont carry them into bars, schools, or hospitals however)

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  111. I’m a knife colleter but I carry one with me for emergency or self protection since I would still be a minor and some of my knives are at almost 2 “1/5 do you have any other recommendations cause my uncle says carrying an open close knife has ups and downs.so I kinda don’t know what knife I’m allowed to carry in my case alice I’m not 18 but if there is nothing you can do thank

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  112. The laws have changed, at least with regard to automatic knives and blade length limits. Your information is out of date by several years, you might want to take a look at that.

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  113. Is it legal for a minor (person under18 years of age) to carry a knife, and if so, what is the maximum blade length of that knife?

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  114. As of 2017 this law is no longer standing. All knifes swords and machetes are legal too carry know. If your gonna run a website about laws. Keep it up too date please and thank you

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  115. Not really, cali makes knives 2 1/2 inches illegal, switchblades, butterfly knives, and most fixed blades illegal, on top of all of texas’s restrictions

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  116. All knives all legal now in Texas, and you can openly or conceal carry any kind of knife or sword as long as you’re 18. However you cannot bring a knife longer than 5.5 inches in a school, amusement park, racetrack, or a government institution.

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  117. Texas law will allow open carry of knives, swords. AUSTIN, Texas – A new law in Texas will allow people over 18 to carry knives with blades longer than 5 ½ inches in public. That means after September 1, people possessing anything from daggers to swords will not be breaking any laws.

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  118. Soon or already in effect you are now allowed to open carry a blade that is over 5.5 inches, although restrictions still apply. Please fix this error so that people may know their rights

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  119. Actually new legislation for Texas knives has been made a lot more lenient. They need to update this page to reflect the changes in law regarding knives.

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  120. This information is out of date and needs to be updated to reflect the new laws in Texas allowing open carry of any number of knives, swords, etc

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  121. Can you carry a knife that is under 5.5 in, is not a switchblade, but has a pressure point incorporated in the blade that allows it to unfold, in a hospital. Carrier is over 18 and knife is in the pocket.

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  122. I’m 15 and I live in Dallas Texas and want to start collecting and buying pocket knives and stuff is it legal to buy knives for my age and collect them or what’s the rule or law?

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    • Based on what I just read, that is legal to carry if you are 18, everywhere except the restricted areas listed above.

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    • Is 7 inches more than 5.5 inches? You CAN carry a knife 5.5 inches or LESS “anywhere”. You CANNOT carry a knife OVER 5.5..i.e. 5.5 inches or more into the places listed.

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  123. What is the Law on Ballistic Knives, ownership and carry. Also I work as a Private Military Contractor so this would be for work.

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    • Dude, read the article:
      However, any adult can carry any knife over 5.5 inches anywhere other than certain restricted locations (see below). There are some restrictions on locations (hence the term “location-restricted knives”). You can’t carry any “location-restricted” knife (blade over 5.5 inches in length) to the following locations:

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  124. I purchased this wallet for a long vacation in which I wanted a front pocket wallet for security purposes. After using for vacation it has now become my primary wallet full-time. Wallet holds plenty of cards, looks great and takes up minimal space.
    Thanks,
    Hinitex

    Reply
  125. I’m thinking of getting a karambit knife for self-defense. Is that legal to carry, or do I need to look at something else?

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  126. I have a large blade estimated length around 13 inches with a serrated section and curved normal blade at the further end of it sepperated by a hook like feature each of the 2 take up round about half the blade it game with a nylon sheath with a back strap I was just looking around online cause I decided if I’m gonna own it I might aswell learn how to wield it effectively then I realized I didn’t even know if it was leagle to openly carry it the text on the blade also says DEFENDER XTREME so could anyone tell me based on that information if it’s legal to openly carry or at least anywhere I could learn how to use it proficiently?

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    • Per the above article, with exceptions of places as noted, all knives are legal period (finally). If it has built in “knuckles” ie brass knuckles then it is not legal.

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    • Yes, you can carry it legally in Texas, EXCEPT in the places mentioned above, hospitals, gov’t offices, etc. If you are close to Galveston I can help you in learning how to use the knife. At least use the heck out of Youtube to learn something on the use of a knife.

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  127. I understood that a blade over 5.5 inches cannot be taken in certain areas like hospitals and schools, but what if the blade is less that 5.5 inches long? Like a regular pocket knife. What size knife can I take to the places mentioned? I have a 3.75 inch pocket knife when folded down

    Reply
    • Which means you can carry it into most places. Most places that won’t allow those will tell you. You have a pocket knife. You can carry it anywhere except places that say you can’t. Court house will not allow it, and most ball parks won’t. They will have a sign listed that will state it, and probably have metal detectors and security. You still won’t get in trouble in most of them. They will just say, You can’t bring that in here. I’ve been to places that I had my pocket knife and set off the metal detectors. They usually just tell you, throw it away or take it back to your car. Most of the restricted places you can still carry your pockect knife. The old definition of a pocket knife was exactly what you have described. Something like ‘folding and under 4 inch blade.’ Now it’s just anything with a blade under 5.5 inches.

      Reply
    • Hey Sebastian;
      Just about any knife is legal to carry in Texas if you’re over 18. The only exception is knives with knuckles. Otherwise, you can open carry or conceal carry anything you want. If you carry a knife whose blade is longer than 5.5 inches, there’s a list of places you can’t go into (like schools, churches, race tracks, sporting events, etc.) – you can see the full list on our Texas Knife Laws post.
      cheers,
      Josh – knifeup.com

      Reply
    • Texas— it does not matter, ALL knives (except knuckle knives, knives with handguards like brass knuckles) there is NO concealed or un-concealed law to worry about as you CAN carry it however you want. NO MATTER how big or small, BUT…you CANNOT carry a knife with a blade OVER 5.5 inches INTO certain places, you need to read that section so you will be informed on where.

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  128. “Bars” should have been the first place listed that you cannot carry location restricted knives. The actual text of the article states something along the lines of an an establishment that derives 51% or more of its revenue under other chapters and articles. No, you cannot carry anything more than a pocketknife sized blade in a bar. This article needs to make that clear since bar and club zones are where you may be spontaneously attacked due to the nature of the venue or the time of night you walk to your vehicle.

    Reply
    • Thanks Guy for your observation;
      We just made a link to the entire technical definition of the places to which you referred (I believe it means “bar” but the official legal term is something crazy like “establishment that makes more than 51% … blah blah”). We made the link bigger and informed people that it contains the full list of places you can’t carry a location-restricted knife.
      cheers,
      Pete

      Reply
    • I am a chef and I carry large knives 3 inch to 20 inches. Most of the time they are bagged or boxed. No gun zone. Am I cool with a knife bag? And what about .org knives like cool knives from bench made? Open out of the front Not org

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  129. I have a knife in a sheath on a necklace chain, can I wear that around my neck in public besides the list of restricted place like hospitals schools etc.?? Thank you!!

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    • Yes you can wear it around your neck Tina but preferably its not to big 🙂 it would get tiring, Im 60 now and I carry 2 karambits and one push dagger,All concealed.I am happy they changed the knife laws, I just dont like to show what I have as some love to show off 15 inch Bowies and some men conceal their guns and others walk around looking like a war is going on…LOL..I pray I never have to use mine, I would not ever be comfortable shooting someone even in self defense, unless it was an all out war…

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  130. If I was convicted for a violent felony in a different state and have finished my sentence completely, can I carry a knife on me here in Texas?

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  131. I have a v 42 boker that’s basically a thin dagger with a skullcracker on the bottom, and I want to carry it with me on delivery jobs. If it stays in my car while I need to approach a restricted location, is it still legal?

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    • If the knife itself is not illegal, then as long as it stays in your car while you’re inside a restricted location, you should be good! For sure you’ll be good if you don’t advertise to ANYONE that you have it in the car. There’s no way a cop would bother to check your car unless you’re a felon or you look really sketchy! Make every effort to look like an upstanding citizen and there should be no problems.
      J.

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    • If you’re under 18, you can have a knife that’s got a blade under 5.5 inches long. You can’t take ANY knife to a school. When you’re not at school, I’d keep it in your pocket and don’t look for trouble!
      cheers,
      J.

      Reply
    • Hey Lola;
      While there is some wiggle room for law enforcement to make decisions, generally speaking, anyone under the age of 18 (minor) – though preferably close to the age of 18, may carry a knife with a blade less than 5.5 inches. Presumably, you can order one online in order to possess one in the first place. That’s just my thought on the matter – a lawyer in Texas can tell you for sure!
      cheers,
      J.

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    • My Daughter is 19 almost 20. Can she carry a hunting knife in her glovebox or in her car period for protection or to go hunting? She loves to hunt. But she is also out of jail on a bond (misdemeanor) . I worry about her cause she had a boyfriend that became violent and aggressive to her. She broke up with him but he keeps calling her and bothering her. She has a protective order on him but that won’t stop him from attacking her. She needs to carry a pistol but not old enough yet. When she turns 21 I will get her a gun and she can take the tests to carry concealed weapons and get a permit.

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  132. I have a rather large knife I carry on my waist, at least 8 inches. I want to know of I carry it into a store that doesnt have a posted notice about weapons can I get into trouble?

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    • If i’m reading this correctly, as long as the blade itself, not including the handle is less than 5.5 inches, you are fine. Though if the proprietor requests removal, it is always best to adhere to said request

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  133. Do these new regulations also mean that you can carry a bayonet on your rifle or pistol? Are blades that are integrated into a firearm legal? Last, are ballistic knives legal?

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  134. So, with these new laws concerning blades in Texas, what are the laws when it comes to a felon? Can I still legally carry a knife in a sheath on my belt?

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  135. Great resource, thanks for putting the time and effort into it and keeping it updated as these laws were finally brought out of the stone ages. Love my auto knives and love that I can carry them here.

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  136. I read somewhere, recently, that the overall length of a knife had to be less than 8 3/4″, and if longer, it was considered a location restricted knife. Now, I can’t find anything on it. Anyone have an answer?

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  137. I heard rumor that boot knives are illegal? It doesn’t mention boot knives as far as I saw in the article, but I still want to cover my bases and make sure I’m not in the wrong for anything.

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  138. I was filling out a deposit slip at First Service Credit Union when a cop asked me “is that a knife in your pocket” I replied “yes” and he told me to place it at his desk until ready to leave the credit union…?

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  139. What constitutes the “blade”? The sharp edged part or that part plus the dull part by the handle?

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    • Hey Faeghan;
      Thanks for the question. The part you’re referring to (unsharpened part of blade) is called the Ricasso on most sport/folder knives or BOLSTER on culinary knives. The answer to your question may depend on the knife company. I know that Spyderco includes the entire blade right up to the handle in their specs, but that may be just to make the blade look longer. In whatever context you may be asked about the length, I’m not sure it really matters since the Ricasso is typically fairly small in most cases. You could probably make the case (in front of a Police officer) that the blade is the sharpened part only, but that depends on the officer him/herself and the circumstances in which you find yourself speaking to the Police.
      I’m not sure that’s a totally satisfying answer, but without knowing the details of your situation, it’s the best I’ve got.
      cheers,
      J.

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    • From what I can infer it’s the entire length of the knife not including the handle, so anything from the guard to the tip of the knife should count as the blade.

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    • According to Texas state law, the blade length is measured from the farthest tip back to the point where the handle starts. This includes any sharpened and unsharpened portions.

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  140. I walk to work and I pass a school on the route o take. If I carry a blade longer than 5.5 inches should I worry about getting in trouble? I stay on the sidewalk in front of the school

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  141. So I’ve been told recently that I cannot carry a foot long blade or longer by my seat in my car because if I get pulled over they’ll confiscate it and give me a ticket. I was just wondering if that is in fact true.

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    • Is it legal in Texas to carry straight edge razors in yoyr pocket. I have one that measures 9 1/2 inches when opened. The blade is just 3 inches.

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  142. So is it legal to have a two/double side blades knife? I have some new knifes 3-7/8” long that currently only have one side sharpened. But the other side is made to be sharpened at ones desire. But was not sure it that was legal here in the great state of Texas.

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    • To my understanding it is legal to own any knife, but for the longest time it was illegal to carry a life that was sharpened on both sides. However, I believe that has recently been legalized.

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    • If I wanted to carry around an assassins creed metal hidden blade that was sharpened could I do it because it is activated by a wire connected to a ring on a finger and I am not talking about taking it to like a school or other places that don’t allow knifes. I just want to know if it is legal to carry around in public

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    • Technically knuckle devices arent going to be legalised until september 1st of this year so until then it is still illegal to carry a “trench knife” or any other kind of knife with a knuckle device on it I would not even reccomend carrying a balisong for the simple reason that police can consider that a knuckle device

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    • Hey Claire;
      I’m not allowed to give you official legal advice, but here are my thoughts; I wouldn’t bring a switchblade or any other “obvious” knife (even a 3-inch bladed pocket knife) into a public building since Police frown upon people carrying knives in public places. However, on a personal level, if I felt I may at some point be in danger from someone else, I would carry dog-repellent spray which is far more effective and less “illegal” than a sharp piece of steel. Barring that, I would definitely consider any one of a variety of self-defense tools like jewelry that has the ability to hold a blade or even a small electric taser. If you’re using these for self-defense ONLY, then you’ll never show them off for fun, which means you’ll never get questioned by any Police officer as to why you’re in possession of them. Make sense?
      cheers,
      J.

      Reply
    • You’re good. Do NOT take the knife to school due to the Zero tolerance policy schools have, you will be kicked out. Do not carry anywhere on the restricted location list. If you’re ever stopped by the police for any reason, keep your hand out of your pockets and tell the officer if he asks. Other than that have fun and stay safe and use that knife responsibly!

      Reply
  143. I am 12, is it legal to carry a pocket knife in my pocket or would it count as carrying a concealed weapon. The pocket knife is under 5 inches.

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    • You’re good. Do NOT take the knife to school due to the Zero tolerance policy schools have, you will be kicked out. If you’re ever stopped by the police for any reason, keep your hand out of your pockets and tell the officer if he asks. Other than that have fun and stay safe and use that knife responsibly!

      Reply
    • If your under 18 years of age you can carry a knife under 5.5 inches legally. If over 5.5 inches it is illigal. Only under certain situation can you carry a knife that is over 5.5 inches if your under 18 years of age.

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  144. Josh Sargeant,,,

    You would think that what you said in reference to, any law enforcement officer would frown less at the possession of dog deterrent spray versus a knife with a blade of ,I say anysize….One would think this to be true….however from personal experience, I entered a courthouse checkpoint completely forgetting about the pepper spray I had in my purse, I was treated as if I had entered the building with a loaded gun…So my advice don’t even attempt to take a fingernail file as the officer said to me through the front doors…He stayed that if you are not there for criminal proceedings you could sure be looking at them soon.

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  145. I am 20 years old. I have a 7 foot long sword that i commissioned from someone based on the anime Bleach! The sword is that of the main character’s, it is razor sharp. That being said is it legal to take to shows and cosplay conventions??

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    • So i know what you are talking about. But in turn, would you want the responsibility of a child wanting to get his picture with you and accidentally getting cut? Or anyone accidentally bump into it? Props for the most part should not have an edge for liability reasons. Also the sword sounds bad ass is it the large sword or the thin blade?

      Reply
    • No convention would allow that. It is legal to own that in texas, but not legal to conceal on your person. Also it is I possible to conceal on your person. Openly carrying a seven foot sword, while not expressly prohibited it seems, is a good way to make cops mad. I would just leave it in your room and take it to remote photoshoots.

      Reply
    • You probably should only show it through a glass case or a gage. You said it is razor sharp. Dont put yourself in any situation where someone can get it and hurt someone. Make a replica from other materials and you wont have any doubt. That said you should leave it at home.

      Reply
  146. if i have a dagger, single edge, one side only sharpened, and another dagger, this one double edged, both sides sharpened, both blades 5 inches, both daggers sheathed, on my belt, is that then considered legal?, is that also considered legal even in “location restricted area” since they’re both under the location restricted blade size?

    Reply
  147. I’m fifteen and I own a 40 inch civil war saber I want to take to show someone. It is a dull reproduction, in a scabard. Is this legal for me to carry?

    Reply
    • Hi Allie;
      The only law I found is § 46.03. (Places Weapons Prohibited) – which prohibits a knife on school property anywhere in Texas – IF the blade is 5.5 inches or longer. However, I’d still be very careful about who sees the knife (preferably no one) and I’d try to remain under the radar. That’s just me 🙂
      cheers,
      Pete

      Reply
  148. Hasn’t the law changed since last year about the legality to carry brass knuckles and other bludgeoning weapons? Does it impact the carry of trench knives and other knives?

    Reply
  149. Hi my brother just gifted me a pocketknife and I live in Texas I’ve been trying to learn more about the laws and I know you can carry a knife almost anywhere in Texas but I’ve been trying to look and I have not found that says you can’t carry a knife in stores I wanted to know if the lovely people of this comment section would help me find anything.

    Reply

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