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Josh E





Joined: 27 May 2007

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PostPosted: Mon 08 Oct, 2007 9:57 am    Post subject: retractable dagger?         Reply with quote

i am trying to get any and all info on the retractable blade that altier (alt-eye-ear) from assassins creed uses. it is located on his left forearm. looks like the pic.


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Matthew Miller





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PostPosted: Mon 08 Oct, 2007 10:58 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

To my knowledge that weapon is entirely fictional. While it is an interesting concept, I am sure that it would be an ineffective weapon in reality.
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Dan P




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PostPosted: Mon 08 Oct, 2007 10:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

My bet is that they just made it up for the game. And that it would be illegal to wear in most places if it were real. Why does he wear it on the INSIDE of his arm, which severely limits how he can use that hand without cutting his fingers all the time?
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Mon 08 Oct, 2007 3:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have moved this topic to the Off-Topic Forum from the Historic Arms Talk forum. Please note the description of the Historical Arms Talk forum is: "Discussions of reproduction and authentic historical arms and armour from various cultures and time periods"

Thank you.

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Eric Meulemans
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PostPosted: Mon 08 Oct, 2007 7:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan P wrote:
Why does he wear it on the INSIDE of his arm, which severely limits how he can use that hand without cutting his fingers all the time?


I find it very interesting that, at least according to the Wikipedia entry, the game designers anticipated this question:

"Alta´r is also missing his left hand ring finger which was severed as part of the initiation ceremony when he received his mechanical dagger. When the blade is extended and the hand is balled into a fist the blade extends through the space left by the removed ring finger. A trailer showing the dagger being "unsheathed" shows a complex clockwork mechanism."

And apparently a reasonable approximation of the blade's mechanism can be crafted from LEGOs...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIBoB_ErZCY
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Josh E





Joined: 27 May 2007

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PostPosted: Sat 20 Oct, 2007 1:04 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan P wrote:
My bet is that they just made it up for the game. And that it would be illegal to wear in most places if it were real. Why does he wear it on the INSIDE of his arm, which severely limits how he can use that hand without cutting his fingers all the time?


illegal or not does not matter to me. i am trying to figure the schematics for it so i may use a similar weapon for a character in a book. also, in regards to the weapon being ineffective. if you watch the couple different videos that the game has you will see that the dagger is has a certain length of it that is a spot to hang onto and the blade comes out from there.
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Bruno Giordan





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PostPosted: Sat 20 Oct, 2007 11:47 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I remember having seen it in a hong kong martial arts B-movie in the seventies.

It appeared to be working, at least in the movie.

But it was worn in correspondence of the back of the actor's hand, as it should be obvious: when the blade bolted out it didn't do much arm.

Anyway a real one would still be very dangerous if it happened to pop out autonomously when the back of the hand would be tilted back.

I don't think it to be a practical weapon.

A defect in the spring mechanism could cause a serious self-stab.
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Andrew Lee





Joined: 24 Jun 2006

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PostPosted: Sun 21 Oct, 2007 1:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It's an OTF switchblade, writ large. The better ones out there lock in place, and are actually pretty durable... I remember a Microtech demonstration where they hammered one of theirs into a chunk of wood. As for safety, the mechanisms they use are pretty well-tested. It's pretty hard to have an oops moment that makes the blade extend. There are also safeties on a lot of them. Frankly, I'd think it'd be at least as easy to hit yourself while swinging around a sword as it would be to have an accident with something like this - very easy if you're stupid, and a lot harder if you're not. It would also be fairly straightforward to design a safety that loops around a finger or something, and prevents extension if the hand is in the way. A weapon can be "safe" because it's so conceptually simple that the way to avoid self-injury is obvious, or it can be "safed" through design. Guns, in general, seem to be well-received despite the remote possibility that they'll go off in their holster and shoot a hole through the wielder's foot. And the possibility that a simple weapon will injure the user through human error is, in my estimation, much higher than the possibility that a well-designed mechanism will just randomly fail.

Don't know if it's practical, as I'm not an assassin. But the mechanism is pretty simple in theory - springs and mechanical locks. And it works. As far as effectiveness as a weapon, well... fist knives have somewhat similar dynamics to what's suggested here (minus the flash factor) and there's a whole world of SD people who at least partially advocate that sort of approach. And it's a story, so why the hell not? Goldfinger's pistol being made out of gold was a lot worse than what's being suggested here, as far as practicality goes, and it was still an awesome movie...
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Bruno Giordan





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PostPosted: Sun 21 Oct, 2007 1:27 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Andrew Lee wrote:
It's an OTF switchblade, writ large. The better ones out there lock in place, and are actually pretty durable... I remember a Microtech demonstration where they hammered one of theirs into a chunk of wood. As for safety, the mechanisms they use are pretty well-tested. It's pretty hard to have an oops moment that makes the blade extend. There are also safeties on a lot of them. Frankly, I'd think it'd be at least as easy to hit yourself while swinging around a sword as it would be to have an accident with something like this - very easy if you're stupid, and a lot harder if you're not. It would also be fairly straightforward to design a safety that loops around a finger or something, and prevents extension if the hand is in the way. A weapon can be "safe" because it's so conceptually simple that the way to avoid self-injury is obvious, or it can be "safed" through design. Guns, in general, seem to be well-received despite the remote possibility that they'll go off in their holster and shoot a hole through the wielder's foot. And the possibility that a simple weapon will injure the user through human error is, in my estimation, much higher than the possibility that a well-designed mechanism will just randomly fail.

Don't know if it's practical, as I'm not an assassin. But the mechanism is pretty simple in theory - springs and mechanical locks. And it works. As far as effectiveness as a weapon, well... fist knives have somewhat similar dynamics to what's suggested here (minus the flash factor) and there's a whole world of SD people who at least partially advocate that sort of approach. And it's a story, so why the hell not? Goldfinger's pistol being made out of gold was a lot worse than what's being suggested here, as far as practicality goes, and it was still an awesome movie...


Hmm, there seems to be also the need for a protecting glove that will give away the carrier of such weapon at first sight.

Also no mechanism is perfect. One not working perfectly would likely mean a pierced back.
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Andrew Lee





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PostPosted: Sun 21 Oct, 2007 2:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Bruno Giordan wrote:


Hmm, there seems to be also the need for a protecting glove that will give away the carrier of such weapon at first sight.

Also no mechanism is perfect. One not working perfectly would likely mean a pierced back.



Not really. A ring with a high-test filament fishing line would do quite well. Disguising things like this can be ridiculously easy. You're right - no mechanism is perfect. But the ways in which they can fail are well-known, and can be protected against. Neither does something have to work *perfectly* to do its job just fine. Or be safe. You can overbuild something, design in redundancies, mess with tolerances... lots of ways to do it.

To explore it a bit further, there's no need for something like that to be sharp along the portion that overlaps the fist. An eight inch dagger blade, with the three or four inches that run up against the hand made nice and dull. Then the only thing you have to worry about is keeping your hand out of the way when you want to deploy the thing. And that can be mechanically ensured in an unobtrusive way.

Once again, practicality/effectiveness as a weapon is something I'm not qualified to discuss. But dismissing it on the grounds of safety or engineering issues is, frankly, a losing battle.
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Bruno Giordan





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PostPosted: Mon 22 Oct, 2007 11:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Andrew Lee wrote:
Bruno Giordan wrote:


Hmm, there seems to be also the need for a protecting glove that will give away the carrier of such weapon at first sight.

Also no mechanism is perfect. One not working perfectly would likely mean a pierced back.



Not really. A ring with a high-test filament fishing line would do quite well. Disguising things like this can be ridiculously easy. You're right - no mechanism is perfect. But the ways in which they can fail are well-known, and can be protected against. Neither does something have to work *perfectly* to do its job just fine. Or be safe. You can overbuild something, design in redundancies, mess with tolerances... lots of ways to do it.

To explore it a bit further, there's no need for something like that to be sharp along the portion that overlaps the fist. An eight inch dagger blade, with the three or four inches that run up against the hand made nice and dull. Then the only thing you have to worry about is keeping your hand out of the way when you want to deploy the thing. And that can be mechanically ensured in an unobtrusive way.

Once again, practicality/effectiveness as a weapon is something I'm not qualified to discuss. But dismissing it on the grounds of safety or engineering issues is, frankly, a losing battle.


Maybe i'm not intelligent enough but i still see it as a quirk design.

A little bit like the whirlwind cannon that in ww2 should have dragged down allied planes attacking Germany. A nice contraption, a lot of ingenuity, a respected engineer behind it, but it never sucked down any bomber with its artificial whirlwinds.

Investing too much to apply high level technology into a weapon like this would also be a waste of energy and time: surely a costly mechanism, maybe even some electronic circuitry maybe tripled as i airplanes to enhance safety, to what avail?

And even the shuttle or the NASA rockets of the sixties did reveal defects, but at least they had definitely more than one serious purpose to be built..

Any object that is put into market must take into account a cost/effectiveness balance.

if it wasn't so we would be typing at the keyboard of undestructible computer whose mass memory would never fail, we would be driving the same cars for twenty years with very few failures etc.
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Bram Verbeek





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PostPosted: Mon 22 Oct, 2007 1:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think it's not really useful to have an initiation ceremony that severs always the same finger, that way you identify the group involved quite soon. For an assassin, I would place my bets on a method of killing that could have been anyone.

As for the blade, my guess would be a square or triangular blade without edges, still enough stabbing and less cutting your hand while it is open. Doesn't mean I would want such a weapon, I think manual dexterity is too much in the wrist
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Andrew Lee





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PostPosted: Mon 22 Oct, 2007 3:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Bruno Giordan wrote:

Maybe i'm not intelligent enough but i still see it as a quirk design.

A little bit like the whirlwind cannon that in ww2 should have dragged down allied planes attacking Germany. A nice contraption, a lot of ingenuity, a respected engineer behind it, but it never sucked down any bomber with its artificial whirlwinds.

Investing too much to apply high level technology into a weapon like this would also be a waste of energy and time: surely a costly mechanism, maybe even some electronic circuitry maybe tripled as i airplanes to enhance safety, to what avail?

And even the shuttle or the NASA rockets of the sixties did reveal defects, but at least they had definitely more than one serious purpose to be built..

Any object that is put into market must take into account a cost/effectiveness balance.

if it wasn't so we would be typing at the keyboard of undestructible computer whose mass memory would never fail, we would be driving the same cars for twenty years with very few failures etc.


So what, exactly, does a nonsensical weapon designed by the Nazis (people who, by WWII, had essentially abandoned *real* science) have to do with an arm-mounted switchblade? Or the Space Shuttle? This isn't entirely sarcasm - I'd love to know the reasoning behind this. Maybe it's because whirlwind cannons and arm-blades are both fantasy weapons? If that's the case, then I'd have to reply that they are in very different categories of "fantastic."

Also, what's complex about a spring? No one ever mentioned electrical devices; I myself only commented on mechanical solutions. Your market analogy also fails, because, as it stands, switchblades have a definite appeal to people with the desire and wherewithal to own them, despite the fact that they don't actually do anything a normal folding knife doesn't do. People already buy them; there are at least two companies whose bread and butter is derived from making and improving automatic knives and the associated mechanisms. The cost/effectiveness relation you point out really isn't a rebuttal, either - automatic blades with the described mechanism can be had for $300 or less. People will spend more than that at bars, so I think the cost is pretty cheap for whatever effectiveness is offered. I'm not sure how you're relating this to keyboards and cars, though - those devices aren't realy designed for longevity in any case. Or was that your point?

There's no investment involved here; the simplest solution is to use mechanisms that already exist. That's the point I've been trying to make - that everything needed to make this idea real, and make it safe (once again, no comments on its effectiveness as an assassination tool here) is already out there.
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Mon 22 Oct, 2007 3:45 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Looks cool and dramatic in a movie, game or graphic novel and a safe mechanism could be invented but much simpler to just slip a dagger up one's sleeve using a scabbard attached to the arm and rely on skill to use it.

A mechanism that would hold the dagger securely on the inside of the forearm but would release the dagger handle first into the cupped hand in an ice pick grip: Skill would then come to play in using it with that grip or flipping it to forward grip.

Once in the hand it has all the flexibility of use of a standard dagger as opposed to the limited use of a spike sticking out in a rigid way below or above the hand.

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M. Wagner





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PostPosted: Mon 22 Oct, 2007 4:19 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Andrew Lee wrote:
the Nazis (people who, by WWII, had essentially abandoned *real* science)

The Apollo program was based on unreal science?
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Andrew Lee





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PostPosted: Mon 22 Oct, 2007 10:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

No, the whirlwind cannon Bruno mentioned.
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Josh E





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PostPosted: Tue 23 Oct, 2007 7:11 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

ok, now that i know that it is far from impossible to create and staying far away as possible to the battle of technologies that has started i can see some of the relevent theories more clearly. as for the safety of locking mechanism. a string on a ring or fishing line would work but i would thinkit prone to snapping from use or catching on things when or when not in use (theoretically speaking).

what about a small gear that when and only when is depressed unlocks the mechanism thus producing the blade, which by the way is not actually dull where it can be held, it is what i presume to be its sheath where the blade springs from once past the hand.

and as for further safety regarding this gear theory, the blade only springs out after the safety is released and a certain movement, possibly a flick of the wrist or arching it away from the balde, to set it into its unsheathing.
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Josh E





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PostPosted: Tue 23 Oct, 2007 7:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

also regarding the sacrafice of the left ring finger as the right of passage.

it was this and only this finger because to the best of my knowledge swords were wielded mostly with the right hand being the dominant and I had to watch the posted videos four times before i realized he was even missing a finger. if you were to pass by some random person how likely would it be to notice something so small?
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Bruno Giordan





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PostPosted: Tue 23 Oct, 2007 1:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

M. Wagner wrote:
Andrew Lee wrote:
the Nazis (people who, by WWII, had essentially abandoned *real* science)

The Apollo program was based on unreal science?


Mr Lee assertins are historically untrue, at least in this case. the german government of then sponsored so many innovative programs that it almost won the war.

We could name the delta wing aircrafts, the rockets of Von Braun , the first real jets that didn't save Germany because of lack of fuel and absurd political decisions, the syntetic fuel extracted from coal, which still today could be a solution to some of our problems..

The development of some of such weapons was retarded for reasons that enter the realm of politics and even the occult, but that's another question and they are not appropriate here.

As of the ingenuity in the field of weapons and optics whole books have been dedicated to such topics (the leicas and contax cameras ...).

The science of that years was so real that Soviet Union, the US and Britain started to mine Germany for scientists and projects even during the last month of the war.

Back to track, well, maybe such weapon is feasible, I carry many doubts about its realization, since it would require gloves and a mechanism that would be difficult to hide.

What I mean is that it would not be a succesful weapon, it would be just a curiosity like the famous italian lantern shield provided with a glove and a pistol that often pops up on armor forums.

Too complicated to be succesful, that is what i mean.
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Andrew Lee





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PostPosted: Tue 23 Oct, 2007 2:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Actually, the whirlwind cannon specifically was a failure because they never thought about how to extend the range of smaller sonic/vortex devices to the height necessary to actually reach fighter jets.

The Nazis may have had good scientists and engineers in their tents, but they sure as hell *had*, as a political movement, rejected real science. The fact that they were able to exploit the momentum of a tremendous, pre-existing and largely German push in the world of physics doesn't mean they did anything to foster it. Note the Deutsche Physik movement, and related events. Zippermeyer's whirlwind cannon didn't fail because of political or occult reasons - it just failed. It didn't work the way they thought it would.

Back on topic.

The implication that the idea couldn't be safely realized, mechanically, was what I originally railed against, though - if this discussion is returning to practicalities, I'm happy to comply. "Too complicated to be successful" is really too subjective to be debated, anyhow. So good luck with your book, Josh. Fishing line is far from your only option. You could use a set of hinged wrist plates, steel wire, etc.
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