How to Maintain Your Balisong and What You Need to Know
So, you bought a new Balisong and you’ve been flipping it, or maybe you’ve had it for a while and it just doesn’t feel the same as it did when you first got it.
Well, then your Bali needs some maintenance. Friction and dirt can wear down your Balisong’s pivots and cause it to perform poorly.
Luckily for you, maintaining your Balisong is a lot easier than it seems and your Bali will be back up and running in no time! All it takes are some simple tools, time and a little love to get your Balisong working like new.
TOOLS TO MAINTAIN YOUR BALISONG
A Torx Bit screwdriver set is a MUST as almost all Balisongs use a variation of Torx bit screws. It is best to invest in a quality tool set, to avoid stripping any screws.
We recommend this 6 Piece Torx Set from WIHA Tools. WIHA makes Torx Bits that fit screws much better than lesser brands which helps prevent stripping and damage. Needless to say, they are worth the investment.
In addition to the Torx set, you'll also need a good knife lubricant along with some Isopropyl Alcohol and Q-tips to ensure your Bali gets a proper cleaning.
Our suggestion for a butterfly knife oil is to use KPL Original Knife Oil as it is formulated and made for knife pivots. It keeps dirt and grit “in suspension” to avoid wear and tear on your pivots. It actually cleans your pivots as you use it!
Optionally, a melamine sponge such as these Mr. Clean Magic Erasers can be used to keep white G10 nice and minty clean.
Lastly, a threadlocker is needed to keep your Balisong together and stop the screws from backing out.
The most commonly used threadlocker is Loctite Blue 243, which is a liquid at first, allowing for easy application until it dries, keeping your knife strongly locked.
A very important tip is to avoid using red Loctite, as that is permanent and can prevent you from taking the knife apart without excess heat and force.
HOW TO TUNE YOUR BALISONG KNIFE
1. TAKE YOUR KNIFE APART.
The first step is to take the knife apart and set the screws and pivots aside.
Clean the handles/scales and liners using some isopropyl alcohol on a piece of kitchen paper. Use the Q-Tips to get to hard to reach places.
You can use your melamine sponge to clean your scales here if it applies to your balisong.
3. GIVE YOUR KNIFE A BATH
Next, give your knife a bath by soaking the screws and pivots in the alcohol to help get rid of all the dirt and grime that’s covering your hardware.
This includes your washers, bushings and/or bearings, whichever your Balisong uses.
4. PUT IT BACK TOGETHER AGAIN
After soaking for a minute or two, wipe them off with a paper towel. You can now put your Balisong back together, excluding the pivot screws.
This is where the loctite comes into use.
Put a very little amount of Loctite on the threads of the screws and put the screws in, tightening them to your liking.
5. LUBE IT UP
Once that’s done, add a little bit of knife lubricant to the pivots and move the handles to work it in.
This is a very important step, as it ensures your pivots stay as smooth-running and in the best condition possible.
BALISONG MAINTENANCE RE-CAP
- Take your Balisong apart and set the hardware aside.
- Clean the hardware by soaking it in the isopropyl alcohol and wiping them off.
- Clean your handles/liners and scales.
- Put the Balisong back together and use the threadlocker to keep it in place. Wait 24 hours for it to cure.
- Add a drop or two of Knife Pivot Lube to each side of the pivots.
- Lubricate your balisong regularly, especially if it has bearings as bearings need to run smoothly to be effective.
THE DO'S AND DONT'S OF BALISONG MAINTENANCE
-Clean and tune your knife regularly to avoid wear on the screws.
-Make sure you have your tools, knife lubricant and a threadlocker at the ready as you will use these regularly.
-Use a threadlocker to stop your screws from backing out during use.
-Remove the old threadlocker to avoid any potential problems with the new threadlocker.
-Lubricate your pivots regularly to avoid wear and tear.
-Take it slowly and do a proper job with the maintenance of your Balisong and it’ll perform much better for you.
-Forget to clean the screws and pivots properly.
-Flip your Balisong in/over water or overly damp areas.
-Use too much lubricant and flood the pivots, which will cause gunk to build up.
-Use vegetable oil or lubricants not designed for knives or guns, as they can attract gunk, cause wear on your pivots and can even go rancid in the case of vegetable oils.