This is the HOM Design Chimera, made by Jerry Hom and it may be the most underrated balisong for flippers and EDC nerds alike! Here's why we think this knife is one of the best.
Part 1 - HOM Chimera Specifications
The Chimera is a pretty unique and well equipped balisong. The MSRP of the Chimera was $390 for the standard, $410 for the Plus and $450 for the Premium.
The Chimera is 10.5” (26.67 cm) long when open and 5.75” (14.605 cm) when closed, with the blade being 4.75” (12.065 cm) in length. It weighs 4.9 oz (138.9g) with the latch and stock spacers.
The blade is made of ⅛” S35VN steel stock and comes from the factory with an honestly terrifyingly sharp blade. The blade is simple but effective with a rather interesting shaped zen nipple, which was designed to avoid pinching while flipping and was inspired by BaliBallistic.
This bali has precision tuned hardened steel bushings and runs on phosphor-bronze washers.
The handles are sandwich construction which consist of three parts: the scales, liners, and spacers. If you want to learn more about different balisong constructions, click here.
The scales are made of 6AL4V Titanium, also known as Grade 5 titanium. They have a pretty distinct design that I noticed takes cues from the Specter, another fantastic balisong that Jerry has made.
Underneath the scales are liners that are made of either G10 (on the standard and plus models) or carbon fiber on the Premium model, which I own myself. The liners also hold slots for hidden zen pins, which means there are no press fit tang pins or zen pin screws to worry about on this knife, which I really love.
The spacers are made of titanium by default, with aluminum ones being available to help lighten up the rear if you prefer that. The spacers have two different types, with one being on the latched handle that has a slot inside it for the latch to fit.
The latch on the Chimera is by far the most interesting part, but sadly I don’t have a latch on mine as I got it secondhand from a friend of mine. I asked Jerry about how the latch worked as well as any other input from him and here’s what he had to say about it.
Part 2 - Notes from Jerry
So, I talked to Jerry himself about the Chimera and asked if he had any cool behind the scenes, development, or general things he wanted to bring up. Here’s what he said:
"The inspiration for the Chimera was a design originally called the Sentinel and it was for the JDBA (Jerzee Devil Bali Association) knife that never got made. It had the Specter butterfly closure center slot and was a one piece design with a JD signature tail as the latch.
I wanted to do something different with the construction where the outer titanium scales supported the knife like an exoskeleton, so that when you assembled it, you’d see the hidden zen pins go through the liners and straight to the titanium."
The goal was for it to be big and light so the blade stock was reduced from the Specter and Basilisk’s 5/32 to ⅛ stock.
A lot of criticism regarding my previous designs were that they were too similar so I went with something as different and unique as I could."
"As for the latch, I looked into a lot of quick release fasteners and couldn’t find anything, so I decided that a slot with some tension could work."
This created a very magical looking latch that just holds itself in place, as shown above.
A huge thank you to Jerry for giving some input for this section!
Part 3 - HOM Chimera Conclusion
So, yeah, honestly I believe that this is an incredibly underrated knife for flippers and EDC nerds and is absolutely worth checking out and picking up. They have so much engineering behind them and have awesome specs, great quality and amazing flippability with customizable balance and looks.
You get great tolerances and the same quality that every other HOM product has. The Chimera is an insanely unique balisong and I have no regrets on picking mine up personally.
Once you have your HOM Chimera, make sure your Balisong Maintenance Kit is up to date! And check out our article How To Tune Your Balisong Knife!
As always, keep flipping cuties! -Jess <3
**Photos from Home Design Instagram Page