Folding Throwers: Convertible Hira Shuriken?

It is a fine Friday afternoon here in the Realm of the Dark Blade, and I thought I would write another post on the topic of small, star-shaped throwing implements. Due, in part, to an intriguing throwing star design that I have been seeing quite frequently of late. Essentially, fancy hira shuriken with folding blades. Hmm. Now the idea kinda makes sense, at least in theory, but under further examination, some fundamental weaknesses are painfully evident in the practical implementation of these weapons. Following are two examples.

The Cyclone Thrower

Cyclone Thrower Folding Throwing StarCyclone Thrower Throwing Star Closed
[view full size]<>[view full size]


The Dragon Twister

Dragon Twister Folding Throwing StarDragon Twister Throwing Star Closed
[view full size]<>[view full size]

As you can see, these throwing stars have the unique distinction of having points, (blades, in fact,) that fold. What is really kickin’ is that besides looking sleek and stealthy, the cyclone thrower can be thrown in the closed position, and will open itself in mid flight! Pretty cool. Except that both designs introduce other weaknesses and/or problems.

First, while folding blades allow for a smaller overall diameter, these designs are often three (or more) times thicker than a traditional throwing star. So I could store a couple of these in a smaller diameter pouch, but I’d only be able to fit 2 where I could originally fit 6, in a flatter, (albeit larger) pouch. I dunno if it’d be worth it.

Then of course there is the issue that more parts means more points of failure. Each hinge or blade pivot point adds another possible point of failure. Failures that would almost certainly occur under conditions of extreme duress; most likely when it would be terribly inconvenient for a failure to occur. Yeah, I agree. I hope Murphy burns in hades too. But you’d be b*ll*xed either way.

And most notably, in the stated scenario, with, let’s say, a Dragon Twister design where your blades don’t open by themselves mid- flight, who, on Gods green earth, would have the time to sit there and open all 5 blades before throwing it? I can just see it now, just as your determined foes are about to fall upon your pathetic little self…: “Well gosh, I’m sorry, could you hold off on killing me for a second? I just got the third blade open…” Uh huh. Brilliant survival strategy.

Nonetheless, I actually like the basic design of these throwers, especially the smooth lines of the cyclone thrower. When closed it forms a very neat little circle, no points to jab you in uncomfortable places while being carried, and the fact that it can be thrown closed and opens in mid-air just ranks it astronomically high on the cool scale. Another cool toy to add to my little black bag of tricks…

The Cyclone Thrower (Black) – [True Swords]
The Cyclone Thrower (Silver) – [True Swords]
The Dragon Twister (Black) – [True Swords]
The Dragon Twister (Silver) – [True Swords]


7 Responses to “Folding Throwers: Convertible Hira Shuriken?”

  1. 1 ChroniclerLoki
    September 28, 2008 at 3:21 pm

    I see this and I think glaive, not the traditional polearm the term really describes, but that mythical bladed boomerang seen in games like warcraft 3 and movies like Krull. but yes the one that opens by itself is substantially faster and more useful than the other, but like you said, the trade off of carrying fewer for a more amusing design might not be worth it in the long run.

  2. October 5, 2008 at 2:39 am

    Well personally, If I absolutely had to carry a large circular or multi legged bladed throwing weapon around with me, it wouldn’t be any of these, I’d stick with the tried and true Shuriken, or i’d make my own stronger design…

  3. 3 ChroniclerLoki
    October 5, 2008 at 12:02 pm

    Yes, well. Aside from the Highlander, how many warriors running around the battlefield are actually trained and capable of creating their own weapons? It is a rare trait indeed as weaponsmithing was a highly specialized and long trained skill. But I commend your desire for a weapon whose design and function you can control perfectly.

  4. October 12, 2008 at 8:42 pm

    I suppose you are right, historically, the blacksmiths were rarely the combatants. Nowadays however, technology allows us to be either one. It is true that for TMA, the weapons made by dedicated weapon smiths are of such great quality that there is no need for a MA to make thier own.

    However for non standard MAs custom weapons may be required, in which case sometimes it is preferable to design and fabricate them from scratch…

  5. 5 iceman_arc
    February 6, 2009 at 1:52 pm

    LOL… my room-mate had one of these given to us by our shifu and he tried to throw it… it rotated on its way naturally and the third blade cut him in his thumb web as he threw it.

    not a good idea, imo.

  6. 6 Oh_Pointy!
    April 24, 2009 at 11:15 am

    Heh, I threw it while open.. naturally I was too scared to do it properly so I didn’t get cut. Glad it opens when closed. Must..go..try.. *poof*

  7. April 30, 2009 at 11:37 pm

    Well… good luck… Just a word of advice, try not to *poof* and throw at the same time… 😀

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