The Circus Faka throwing knife is the sibling of the very popular Faka - both manufactured by Dalmo Mariano. He explains the evolution:
I have been throwing knives for more than 35 years, and in Brazil never found a throwing knife that could fit my needs, so I decided to make some myself. The first models I made already performed well - probably because I’m a knife thrower, so I could test the prototypes until I found the right shape and weight-distribution.
A year ago, I started training artists from a local circus - the Circus Faka is the result of what I learned there. In a show and while practising, it is very convenient to carry many knives in one hand, so you can "peel and throw" them in a sequence. Thus, the knife had to be sleek and not too heavy, and of symmetric design. Because the audience expects a dangerous-looking throwing knife, I went for a dagger-style. The cross guard contributes to this look, and also adds strength and center-weight. Despite the dagger style, the Circus Faka has no cutting edges, of course: you will also want to throw it by the blade. The tip is very pointy for sticking well in wood.
The steel used is a good Brazilian medium carbon steel, strong and reliable. It is tempered to a hardness in the low 40s of the Rockwell scale, because its better for a throwing knife to bend, if exposed to a hard use, then to brake.
The result, in my opinion, is a very efficient knife – the one I use for my personal practice and professional stunts.
Dalmo Mariano Jr., professional knife thrower and knife maker from São Vicente, Brazil.
When the first knives arrived from Dalmo, I immediately gave them a test drive:
The Circus Faka is balanced slightly towards the handle, which together with the guard gives you the feeling of really mastering the knife in your hand.
For me, the Circus Fake sticks very well from the standard competition distances of 3m and 5m, but also from 4m with a half spin. Using the hammer-thumb grip, you can even throw a full spin from 4m - the thumb resting on the spine of the knife will snuggle nicely against the guard, ensuring a consistent grip.
The knife tip is very sleek and comes to a very pointy finish that penetrates well. To make the throwing knife sturdy, the tip preserves nearly the entire thickness of the steel - resulting in quite big holes in the target.
The ridges of the handle were treated with a grinder, but only lightly, resulting in a "square" feeling at the handle, allowing you to always instinctively feel how you currently hold the knife.
The rough coating (carepa) - stemming from the manufacturing process - and the hand-painted symbol send the message that you're holding a very primal knife, made to be thrown.