Thursday, August 29, 2013

My Perrin Bracelet

A Perrin Bracelet- a custom, handmade bracelet by Fred Perrin. Mr. Perrin is a former French Army Commando, a master in martial arts, and is highly renowned for his self defense skills and weapons. Here's a titanium bracelet, hand forged by him. Given his background, this bracelet's not just a piece of jewelry. 

First off, the construction of the Bracelet is great. I can't imagine how he made this, my guess would be weld one end together, heat the titanium wires, and then weave the titanium together, while heating them periodically to ensure malleability? The annodization of the titanium is typical, it looks really cool blue under some lights, or it fades to a light grey with a hint of blue. Now and then, glimpses of purple can be seen as well. From the variety of colors, my guess is it is heat annodized. This has a 2.75" diameter, which is just a little big for me, but still allows it to be functional. Total damage? $80. Pretty high price, but for the labor and demand of Perrin's work, I feel it's worth it. 

Close-Up of the Weave

These usually come in 303 stainless steel, but I opted for the slightly higher titanium one because I love titanium, I prefer the colors, as opposed to flashy steel, and it's non-magnetic. The last one is just a small bonus, since it allows me to travel through security without needing to remove it. 

These were pretty near impossible to find. I think I found around 12 for sale, most of them weren't in the right size, and those that were were all steel. There are a few at, and ultimately, I called Duane, the owner, and he checked for me and located two extra titanium ones he had. This one was perfect. He provided great service, and even helped me pay with a gift card. If you're looking for one- buy from him. Great guy, great prices, and great transaction overall. 

OKAY, sorry for the boring stuff. On to the fun part. The bracelet's are pretty. As a guy, I'm a little reluctant to wear jewelry, but the titanium look fits well, in my opinion. And it helps balance out my watch on the other wrist (I've always felt the right one looked.. naked.) 

As for the "other" functions, Mr. Perrin designed this as an impact tool. First off, it can be used to enhance a backhand strike with the wrist. In fact, it helps add a little power with slaps as well. I tried it on myself, and quickly got a few bruises. OKAY. I literally just hit myself to try to describe it, and I ended up over-hitting myself and am now rocking back and forth with a new bruise on my thigh. These are surprisingly effective, though I suppose any bracelet can also be used in this way. 

The opening in the bracelets allow them to be pulled off quite quickly. (Although putting them on takes some effort. You need to "hook" one opening around the thick part of your forearm and "roll" the bracelet over your arm.) Once pulled off...
They're not exactly brass knuckles.. but you get the point. Two ways- they can be used in a hammer-fist (striking downwards with your pinky first, like pounding a table), or they can be used to punch. The hammer fists are effective- they add a nice sharp sting to your normal fist, and concentrate force over a much smaller, harder area. The brass knuckles... When you punch, there's definitely a little "give" in the bracelets. Not much, but a little. Instead of a solid blow, you feel a really sharp and solid "poke" by the bracelet's ends. Definitely painful. 

How useful is the bracelet? I'm using it mostly as decoration. But the backhand is definitely a bonus. A normal backhand already hurts, and this is just amplifying the shot. Also, I naturally don't punch anyways, since I'd rather not hurt my hand, and mostly use backhands, chops, and  such. It's pretty hard to give a good punch without hurting a wrist or breaking something. To this endeavor, the bracelet is perfect.

As a brass knuckle? Not very. After a few hits, the bracelet deforms somewhat. Although that's not a really an issue, because I can easily bend it back to shape (titanium is very malleable.) I figure in a fight, it wouldn't matter too much either. It provides a nice punch amplification. yet, my biggest worry is in retrieving it. It takes around a second to slip my hand under the bracelet and pull it off. A straight pull doesn't work- I have to pull it off with a "roll" so one end of the bracelet opens up and comes off first. During this second.. a lot can happen during the fight. I'd much rather use it as a force multiplier for a backhand. 

Not a perfect design, yet this is perfectly innocuous and serves a purpose for self defense. Also, on my wrist, it is the only self defense tool I carry that is always accessible. Two in hand is worth one in a bush, especially since a proper attacker won't wait for one to pull a weapon before attacking. At the very, very least, it's a snazzy looking piece of "jewelry." 

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