The Cutting Edge

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20 More Ways People Have Tried to Sneak Knives on Planes

Put your knives in a checked bag when going to the airport.

I cannot stress that enough. Not only do you risk losing one of your prized possessions but you also run the risk of getting fines or jailed.

At one point, it seemed like knives would be allowed back on planes in limited capacities before an outcry from flight attendants and the general public led to a cancelation of those plans. That means knives either stay at home or go in your checked luggage.

Unfortunately, not everyone is willing to part with their knife. A few years ago, I presented 10 ways people have tried to sneak knives past the TSA. Now I’m back with 20 more ways people have tried to get knives onto planes.

These come courtesy of the TSA Instagram page. The TSA may be reviled by many but they run a darn entertaining social media account.

1. In a can of deodorant

It looks like this person tried to hollow out a canister of deodorant to get their cheap knife onto the plane. It’s almost like they didn’t realize the TSA has sophisticated tools that allow them to see through objects.

Here’s a bonus deodorant knife hider. This person went through a little less effort by simply trying to hide it underneath the lid. I’m sure the knife will smell wintery fresh for a long time. It’s too bad the person will never see the knife again.

2. Inside a boot

If you check any knife lover’s boot, you’re bound to find a knife. Just don’t forget to take it out before going to the airport like this person. It looks like the knife was velcroed on the inside of a cowboy boot or tucked away in a hidden compartment.

3. Wrapped in foil

As you’ll see, there’s a strong belief that foil can foil the TSA. They look at a wrapped piece of foil and think, “That’s just a delicious burrito tucked away in someone’s bag. Next.” A big piece of metal inside a bag just raises suspicions even more.

4. Inside a belt

There is no shortage of belt knives out there. I like to think this person simply forgot that there was a knife embedded in his belt.

If you’re interested in wearing a versatile belt knife (when you’re not trying to board a plane), I recommend checking out the new SOG Sync.

5. Inside a pill bottle

Here is an interesting look into the human mind in three images. In the first, someone tried to sneak a knife onto a plane inside an empty pill bottle. Sure, the knife may be harmless and would have been allowed on the plane had the knife restrictions been lifted, but it’s still illegal.

This next person thought it would be better to stick their slipjoint inside a full pill bottle. There were still caught.

Finally, this person put their knife in a pill bottle full of pills and wrapped it in foil for even more concealment. Their knife was taken away.

6. Inside an enchilada

I love myself a good enchilada and so does this person, except they tried to sneak in an 8.5-inch knife inside theirs. I hope they at least got to keep the enchilada.

7. Inside shoes

The shoe is a classic hiding spot for contraband, but you can’t fool the TSA. Not one but two push daggers were concealed beneath the insoles of shoes at an airport. I guess there’s still a reason they make you take your shoes off at security.

8. Within a pen

Can I borrow your pen to finish this crossword puzzle? Those are the words you don’t want to hear when carrying this knife. There are actually a fair amount of knives hidden inside pens out there and they always (I think) get caught at security.

Here is a highlighter knife and another penknife (get it?). These were hidden directly on the passenger.

9. Inside a hard drive

I love my Kershaw Chive as much as the next guy, but if I don’t want it taken away, I’m putting it in my checked baggage. This person stuck one inside an empty hard drive case, which I’m sure was easy to spot on the machine.

If my understanding is correct, this person took the hard drive scheme to the next level by hiding this good-looking blue Alox Swiss Army Knife inside a hard drive caddy inside a laptop. They were probably hoping that the machinery inside the laptop would hide it. Needless to say, it didn’t.

10. Behind a necktie

Back in the day, pocket knives were allowed on planes but this slip joint Old Timer is no longer in the past. This guy tried to hide his almost in plain sight in the slot behind the tie. I’m sure a knife right on his chest was caught pretty quickly.

11. In a pack of gum

It’s hard to imagine what some people are thinking. It’s likely they may have forgotten their knife in one of their pockets and decided to try to hide it so they wouldn’t have to throw it away. This person tried to put a small push dagger inside the nearest piece of trash: an empty pack of gum.

If the mechanism of a laptop won’t work, a thin layer of paper won’t either.

12. In a hairbrush

These are just three of the brush knives I picked out from the TSA’s Instagram page, but there were many more. Perhaps these people didn’t know their brush had a night job as a knife.

13. Taped to the handle of a carry-on

Here’s another one of those hiding in plain sight attempts. They were hoping it would slip through unnoticed if it was just underneath the handle of their carry-on bag. I’m sure it was very easy to spot.

14. Inside a PC/DVD-ROM game

This person won’t be playing the old Heroes of Might and Magic V game anytime soon. About seven years ago, they tried to hide two knives inside the case, thinking it would thwart hapless TSA agents.

15. In a metal container with food

Here’s how I imagine the exchange:

“Quick, I need a hiding spot for my knife. What do you have?”

“I have this canister of delicious nacho-looking stuff.”

“Good enough.”

And scene. I bet that person is kicking themselves that they didn’t get their nachos back.

16. In a bottle of foot powder

A big piece of metal inside a foot powder container is probably going to raise some eyebrows. The TSA agent who had to fish out the stockman from inside needs a raise.

17. Inside a woman’s bra

Sorry folks, no images here to accompany the hiding spot, but a woman tried to carry this pink rescue folder in her bra. Use your imagination to fill in the blanks.

18. In a neck pillow

Neck pillows full of cotton and fabric are not good hiding spots, especially for large exotic metal fixed blade knives.

19. Underneath a fishing lure

The TSA was kind enough to let this guy who tried to bring his Gerber folder through a checkpoint to take it back to his car. Instead of being grateful for the chance to save it for later, he brazenly tried to conceal it behind a fishing lure. Not cool, dude.

20. Inside a cell phone case

Finally, there’s this cell phone case that also conceals a push dagger. The slab of metal around the phone was cause for a closer inspection. The moral of the story? Don’t forget to put your knives in your checked bags before going to the airport.


Timothy Martinez Jr. is the community director for Knife Depot and the editor of The Cutting Edge. If you have any questions or ideas for The Cutting Edge, you can contact him at
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  1. There is no such thing as “tinfoil”! Tinfoil contains lead!!

  2. I want to see the article that talks about the knives that DID get through! Hey, what about in an Altoids box? How about carbon fiber blades- they can be made wicked sharp, and pretty damn tough. Would they trigger the metal detector?
    (Oh geeez, now I’ll probably be blacklisted at the airport!)

  3. Now understand why there are so many stupid ppl in US.

  4. Zachary Williams

    August 28, 2018 at 5:38 pm

    Tricking the metal detector will do you no good, as the TSA’s god damn machinery can find anything. It can find something hidden within cellphone cases, deodorant bottles, a whore’s tits she doesn’t mind showing off to hundreds of strangers at the airport, even a laptop hard drive. I know my way around electronic devices, and a laptop’s hard drivel has over 150 electrically and magnetically polarized components that would throw off even the most sophisticated sonar and/or radiation systems, and the TSA managed to ruin the day of a man who just wanted to be able to open one of those blasted airline peanut bags they weld shut for some phony “allergy and freshness concerns”. I’ve always wished I could take a manual-opening folder or even better, a decent bladed multi-tool for other chores.

  5. Zachary Williams

    August 28, 2018 at 5:41 pm

    I underestimated the amount of components in a hard drive(I was thinking of a solid state drive). An HDD has nearly a thousand components, and the TSA still managed to ruin the poor fellow’s day!

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