We are gonna be taking a look at a few all-time classics from one of our favorite knife companies and that’s Spyderco.
Spyderco is a company that has a long history of not being afraid to take risks and the way they pulled together emerging elements in their early years such as synthetic handles pocket clips and one hand opening blades the way they merged all these things together into one knife really change the landscape of the knife industry in ways that we can still see today their famed for their precise edge geometries and most recognizable for their leaf shaped blades and trademark round hole opener which is an elegant solution for a one hand opening blade that allows left or right-handed use without the need for protruding thumb studs they’ve had a lot of great models over the years but here are a few that we think are some of their all-time classics, their greatest hits if you will.
Some of these designs have been constantly tweaked and updated over the years which shows their commitment to constant quality improvement which allow these designs to change with the times and stay just as relevant today as they ever were first up is a twofer and that’s the very closely related Delica and Endura.
I’m gonna talk specifically a little bit about the Delica first. One of my favorite things about this knife is this is a great catch-all recommendation no matter who’s asking for a suggestion I know I can pretty much say get a delicate and call it a day and here’s why first off it provides us a very good blade length for EDC with a size that can be taken almost anywhere the base models feature vg10 stainless steel which holds an edge very well still pretty easy to sharpen and can take a wickedly fine edge as well it also sports a full flat grind which makes it a very efficient slicer which let’s be honest that’s the thing we really need to do most with our pocket knives you can see this model here features a green handle and that’s another area where the delica sets itself apart whereas most knives out there these days come in black and you can also get the delica in black if you want Spyderco also sees fit to actually offer us options with plenty of highly visible and colorful handles to suit all kinds of different preferences it also features another element that Spyderco is known for and that’s their bi-directional texturing on these FRN handles what’s nice about that is that the knife can be nice and thin and still maintain a lot of traction and that texture is gonna be really appreciated in certain wet environments or grimy situations where you got to put a lot of hard work in and you don’t want to risk losing your knife one of the other things that makes this a great catch-all recommendation is that it’s not biased for right-hand use or left-hand use it’s a very good ambidextrous design no matter which hand you’re using it’s easy to catch your thumb in there and open the blade very smoothly the second reason is the lock back that this knife uses again very easy to use no matter which hand you prefer and there are a few nice things that Spyderco does with their lock backs that while they didn’t come up with them they helped to pioneer first is the mid mounted position for the lock bar release whereas a lot of older lock back designs feature the release here at the back some people found that depending on their grip if they were holding on too tight to the knife it would be easy to accidentally disengage that by moving it to a mid-mounted position that helps to alleviate that issue and then furthering that mission we have what’s known as the David boy dent hereon the lock bag and it’s essentially just a small cutout now this does two things one again it makes it a little harder to accidentally disengage but it also makes it easier to find that lock bar if you’re not looking directly at the knife it’s easy to just slide your thumb along the back and you can find exactly the position you need to press that in and disengage the lock the last thing that makes this knife a good option for anyone is the 4 position pocket clip no matter what your preference whether you prefer to carry on the left or the right side with the blade oriented tip up or tip down this thing will accommodate whatever you’re looking for you can get all those same great characteristics in a slightly larger knife with the Endura we’ve got the same great handle treatments also available in a bunch of different colors and if you look at the shape you can really trace the DNA of this knife backto the original Spyderco police but the Endura has really eclipsed that knife several times over and that’s why this knife deserves to be on the list really you can’t go wrong with either of these two designs they’re hard working knives at a working man’s budget and something that every Spyderco fanatic should have at least one of in their collection so after talking about those two knives I’d be remiss if I didn’t talk a little bit about the dragonfly 2 and this features a lot of the same elements that make the Endura and the delica great including that bi-directional FRN the boy dent on the lock back as well as different handle options but this knife has a few other elements that have become staples in Spyderco’s design language the first is this large finger choil and they’ve integrated it with the blade and the handle itself and this isnot meant to just be a place where you choke up on for specific moments but it’s an integral part of the grip on the dragonfly this actually allows you to get a three and a half finger grip in what is otherwise a very small and easy to carry blade and because of that it inspires a lot of confidence when you want to put some heavy cuts in this knife also has Spyderco’s deep carry wire clip and even though on this knife it’s not truly deep carry since it is mounted a little lower this is a very unobtrusive design that blends in very nicely when you’re carrying it and that’s one of the reasons that it’s been so popular with Spyderco fans over the years also another thing to talk about the version that I’m holding here actually comes from Spyderco salt series as I said at the beginning Spyderco has never been afraid of taking risks andthat extends to experimenting with all the latest Steel’s on the market just tosee what they can come up with and with virtually all their models they have atendency to put out sprint runs that feature those more exotic Steel’s aswell as handle materials the dragonfly isn’t the only knife in the salt seriesbut these blades have featured h1 steel or more recently LC200N and they’reboth nitrogen based metals that are virtually rust proof making them greatoptions for maritime environments next up in my opinion is one of Spyderco’sgreatest EDC designs of all time and that’s the native 5 like the dragonflythis knife features that finger choil that allows you to get the full grip onthe knife but because of the way this is built it’s a lot more robust than someof those other folders again we see a mid-mounted lock back although no boydent in this case but we also get a full metal back spacer and full dual metalliners which really impart a lot of strength to this frame aside from thatthis knife also features a ton of the things that make the Endura and Delicaso great again that mid-mounted lock back as well as a four position pocketclip we also get that excellent leaf-shaped blade with a full flat grindfor excellent cutting geometry as well assome nice jimping here on the choil and on the spine of the knife making it verynice and easy to choke up another thing that we appreciate is this one is madein Golden Colorado USA Earth you can get lightweight versions of this knife thathave that bi-directional FRN just like those earlier knives as well as heavierduty g10 this particular one is upgraded even further with their blurple g10 ands110v steel which provides just an absolutely insane amount of edgeretention next up is a no brainer and that’s the paramilitary 2 which is anexcellent hard use tactical knife this list certainly wouldn’t be completewithout this knife but I actually prefer the newer para 3 it’s a little bit of asmaller knife but for me I feel it’s a little better suited for EDC and thehandle ratios are a little bit better for my hands but whether you prefer thelarger paramilitary 2 or the smaller para 3 the reason they show uphere is because they are the premier platform for Spyderco’s compressionlock in the way it operates you can kind of think of it as a spine mounted linerlock although it’s even stronger there’s a small tab that sticks into the tang of the knife so you actually have multiple surfaces of engagement which creates a stronger lock up than the single surface that a standard liner lock has but what’s really nice about this knife is it enables safe one-handed operation apart from that you can still see all the great spyderco DNA in this design we’ve got that nice finger choil with that integrated thumb ramp behind the opening hole as well as nice g10 material this one happens to be the camo pattern a four position pocket clip and in this case we even get an oversized lanyard hole allowing you to fit just about whatever you’d like through this the next knife is sort of an off shoot of another one of those risks that Spyderco wasn’t afraid to take and that’s the UK penknife this takes all the signature elements of Spyderco design vocabulary and puts it into a non-locking folder that’s right this is a one-hand opening slip joint which is a style that Spyderco certainly helped legitimize and popularize today but the reason this knife has been so successful is it just plain works Spyderco has learned a thing or two over the years about making a good blade design and it certainly shows we’ve got their great leaf-shaped blade excellent slicing edge geometry as well as multiple versions with upgraded materials we also get that wire deep carry clip which in this case truly is deep carry making this a very discreet knife there’s also really nice ergonomics on this knife it’s nice and slim and handles very well the point drops a little bit and it Orient’s very nicely when you’re opening boxes or packages and since this is anon-locking knife the choil pulls double duty here it plays a very important role when you’re really bearing down on a slip joint knife you always have to be careful that it’s not going to disengage that’s where the choil comes in it’s a very elegant solution to solving that safety issue that some people have with non-locking slip joints next up is the tenacious which is a very affordableknife and shows you no matter what your price range anyone out there can enjoythose great Spyderco design chops this is a knife that’s made in China but whenit first came out it blew people away with the level of fit and finish that they were able to achieve at such a good price even today it’s probably my favorite option for a true working blade under the $50 price point it’s got a really good handle feel as well as that full flat grind and a little more belly than some of their other designs we get a very sturdy liner-lock with full skeletonized liners which just like the native 5 imparts a lot of rigidity to this frame you’ve also still got that four position pocket clip although since it is a liner Locker this is a little bit more of a right-hand bias design but overall this is just a really well-thought-out and usable knife one of my favorite little touches is the edge itself which comes all the way back to the heel combined with the handle shape here at the front it eliminatessomething that a lot of folders are plagued with usually there’s sort of adead zone on the folder because of the pivot itself where it doesn’t functioneither as a handle or blade now on some other Spyderco designs the finger choilsolve this problem but the tenacious doesn’t need it you can really get upright behind the edge which is quite nice all of these knives have stood thetest of time very well and have definitely earned their place in Spyderco Hall of Fame and they also happen to be some of my favorites as well butwhat do you guys think is there a model you think deserves to be on here if somake sure to let us know down below in the comments and in the meantime to getyour hands on any of these great Spyderco knives or any of our othergreat designs click the link in the description below to head over to KnifeCenter.