Spyderco Knives is a company that hardly needs an introduction in the knife world. Known for providing the industry with numerous innovative features and relentlessly refining their designs, Spyderco has been manufacturing knives and tools out of their headquarters in Golden, Colorado for over 30 years. I have extensive experience with Spyderco knives and have reviewed some of their very best knives on this website.
Spyderco Knife Reviews:
Here is a collection of all our Spyderco knife reviews to date. Enjoy!
- Spyderco “S” - Discontinued But not Forgotten
Jealousy is often referred to as the Green-Eyed Monster. Being a little sister, I am all too familiar with this emotion. As a kid, my big brother always had the nicest and newest gadgets. He is also incredibl ... continue reading
- Spyderco Chaparral FRN Lightweight Review
The word ‘refinement’ is one of those bits of critical shorthand that gets people nodding their heads without, most of the time, meaning anything. But in the case of the Chaparral FRN, the latest, least expensive ... continue reading
- Spyderco Bradley Folder 2 Review
I’ve set some odd goals throughout my life. Goals that are a personal measure of my own success. One of those goals was to carry a Spyderco as an EDC knife. I always associated Spyderco with expensive and high quali ... continue reading
- Spyderco P’Kal Review
The word pikal (also spelled pakal) is a Visayan dialect word that literally means “to rip.” In the Filipino martial arts, the name is generally used to describe the method of holding a knife in a reverse grip (a ... continue reading
- Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Left Handed C81GLE2 Review
In 2009 my house was broken into while I was living in West Nashville. This caused me to do two things in quick succession. First, I adopted a huge Irish Wolfhound mix named "Apple," and secondly, I bought a handgun. ... continue reading
- Spyderco Roadie Review
Enthusiast culture is the weirdest thing. At the far end of five years of talking, thinking, and fretting about knives, knowing more now than I ever have about steels, grinds, locks, etc., in a way I’ve never been f ... continue reading
- Spyderco Delica 4 Wharncliffe Review
I’ve been vocal in my dislike of the Delica. I’ve been critical of its ergonomics, its steel, its price point. I was convinced that it was overrated, past its prime. I implied that it only continued to sell becaus ... continue reading
- Spyderco Para 3 C223GP Review
The Para 3 started as a fantasy: “Wouldn’t it be great if there were a smaller version of one of the most storied modern production knives of all time?” Then, this fantasy became a rumor, and that rumor became a ... continue reading
- Spyderco Sage 5 Compression Lock C123CFCL Review
I am sure a few people saw this review coming. When you consider my recommended EDC knives page, you can see that my general top 2 choices for someone is either the Spyderco Paramilitary 2, or the Sage 1. Buy th ... continue reading
- Spyderco Mantra 1 Review
Admittedly, the Mantra 1 had a hill of biases to climb from the start with me. It is a titanium frame lock flipper, a style of knife that I’ve never warmed up to. I find the flipper to be an inferior deployment meth ... continue reading
- Spyderco Manix 2 Lightweight Review
One of the biggest events of the year for knife nuts is Blade Show. Put on by Blade Magazine, this industry wide convention draws a cavalcade of steel-toting enthusiasts to Atlanta, Georgia, where custom knives are f ... continue reading
- Spyderco C149G Vallotton Sub-Hilt Folder Review
I purchased my very first tactical folder during my Freshman year of college in 1992. That knife was a Spyderco Edura. Since that time, I have always been a fan of Spyderco knives. They were pioneers in that they w ... continue reading
- Spyderco Paramilitary 2 vs. Benchmade Griptilian - Knife Showdown
2 Blades enter, 1 Blade leaves. That's the premise behind a series of posts I've had sloshing around in my head for years now. A series of "vs" posts where I pit 2 knives against each other to see which blade comes ou ... continue reading
- Spyderco Clipitool C175 Review
Recently, in a comment on an article on Everyday Commentary, the always-astute R.D. gave a summary of each major knife company’s chief weakness. For Spyderco, he said that they were “diluting their core identity ... continue reading
- Spyderco Positron Review
The original Southard Flipper was a landmark knife for the Spyderco. The company's first flipper, and a collaboration with popular knifemaker Brad Southard, the Southard Flipper helped prove the flipper concept for Sp ... continue reading
- Spyderco UK Penknife (UKPK) Review
For a long time I believed that the Delica was not a well-designed knife. I realized recently, however, that what I actually meant was that, compared to many other designs in the Spyderco catalog, the Delica is simpl ... continue reading
- Spyderco Air Review
Although working with custom makers has become common practice for knife companies, many of these collaborations end up feeling like compromises. Whether it’s because of restrictive budgets, or sub-par execution, o ... continue reading
- Spyderco Slysz Bowie Review
Last Updated: November 18, 2016 An often enjoyed pastime of production knife collectors is to discuss various "Sebenza Killers" arriving on the market. The Sebenza has long been considered a gold standard in high end ... continue reading
- Spyderco Pingo Review
Last Updated: January 3, 2017 I have spoken about the revival of interest in traditional slip joint knives a few times now. Today we have another slip joint review, but rather than featuring a traditional knife today ... continue reading
- Spyderco Rubicon Review
Spyderco has released a number of high end knives of the past year. Blades like the Slysz Bowie, K2, Firefly, and Burch Chubby are all retailing at north of $200. Meanwhile, there doesn't seem to be much of interest g ... continue reading
- Spyderco Tuff Review
Ed Schempp's designs are something of an acquired taste. The man isn't afraid to try new things, and his "function over form" design philosophy aligns nicely with Spyderco's credo. He has worked on a series of ethnic ... continue reading
- Spyderco Sharpmaker Review
Last Updated: February 5, 2017 I occasionally get questions from readers about sharpening: what my "system" is, what products I recommend for sharpening, how I sharpen my knives, etc. While I wouldn't call myself ... continue reading
- Spyderco Chaparral Review
Last Updated: September 28, 2017 They say that a good way to measure the quality of a production knife is to take it apart and then put it back together. A high quality knife will come back together just as easily as ... continue reading
- Spyderco Domino Review
The [easyazon_link asin="B00DG8O3WE" locale="US" new_window="default" nofollow="default" tag="brdfkdfk-20" add_to_cart="default" cloaking="default" localization="default" popups="default"]Spyderco Domino[/easyazon_lin ... continue reading
- Spyderco Southard Flipper C156GBN Review
Last Updated: 11/26/2017 If you have been following the production knife scene the past couple years, then you know that titanium framelock flippers have gotten extremely hot. This has a lot to do with custom and mid ... continue reading
- Spyderco Techno Review
Last Updated: September 8, 2016 The Spyderco Techno is a small titanium framelock folder with all the fixings. It is designed by Polish maker Marcin Slysz, who doesn't seem to have much in the way of background infor ... continue reading
- Spyderco Lum Chinese Folder Review
Having previously reviewed a number of Bob Lum's creations (including the Spyderco Lum Tanto and the Benchmade Onslaught) I have always enjoyed Lum's elegant approach to designing knives. The Lum Chinese Folder is no ... continue reading
- Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Review
Last Updated: March 31, 2018 Poll any knife reviewer, knife YouTube Channel, knife forum or Reddit channel on what the best Every Day Carry (EDC) knife is, and the Spyderco Paramilitary 2 is going to come up time and ... continue reading
- Spyderco Dragonfly II Review
Last Updated: July 31, 2016 The Spyderco Dragonfly 2 is a knife that, frankly, I didn't think I would like. As far as every day carry goes, I'm into medium to large size folders. Maybe it's a macho thing, I really ... continue reading
- Spyderco Delica 4 Review
Last updated: February 10, 2018 Ah, the Spyderco Delica - is there a more classic EDC design? Well, if we are talking about modern folding knives, I'd argue there really isn't. One of Spyderco's most popular knives, ... continue reading
- Spyderco Bob Lum Tanto Review
I recently acquired a Spyderco Bob Lum Tanto. This is a sprint run (limited edition) knife limited to around 700 pieces. It's a pretty unique offering designed by custom maker Bob Lum. Buy the Spyderco Lum Tant ... continue reading
- Spyderco Sage 1 Review
Last Updated: 09/20/2017 A while back I took a look at the Spyderco Sage 2. The Sage 2 is an absolutely fantastic knife and with it's eye catching titanium handle, I find that the Sage 1 often plays second fiddle. ... continue reading
- Spyderco Manix 2 Review
Last Updated: November 19, 2016 The Spyderco Manix 2 is one of those knives that I have been meaning to review pretty much since the start of this website. I've examined a lot of blades since then and now I finally h ... continue reading
- Spyderco Sage 2 Review
Last Updated: December 4, 2016 Today I am looking at another beautiful knife, the [easyazon_link asin="B002DUZL3G" locale="US" new_window="default" nofollow="default" tag="brdfkdfk-20" add_to_cart="default" cloaking= ... continue reading
- Spyderco Endura Review
Last Updated: February 10, 2018 The Spyderco Endura is a knife that you won't fully appreciate until you hold it in your hand. I remember when I first saw this blade at a local gun show. I had heard a lot about the E ... continue reading
- Spyderco Gayle Bradley C134CF Review
The Spyderco Gayle Bradley (C134CF) is one of those knives that was built for use and abuse, but is so nice I wasn't sure if I could bring myself to really scuff it up. I guess the only reasonable answer is to buy two ... continue reading
- Spyderco Native 5 Review
Last updated: May 8, 2018 On paper the Spyderco Native looks like a truly awesome knife. Made in Golden Colorado, its light weight and small footprint make it ideal for EDC while it's S30V blade is made from some of ... continue reading
- Spyderco Caly3 Carbon Fiber Review
Last Updated: 09/27/2015 Hands down the best part about operating a site like bladereviews.com is the excuse to play around with bad ass knives like the [easyazon_link asin="B0089DFIYS" locale="US" new_window="defaul ... continue reading
- Spyderco Military Review
Last updated: February 14, 2018 Those in the military, law enforcement and contract defense firms require high quality gear designed to meet the rigorous demands of these types of positions. The Spyderco Military was ... continue reading
- Spyderco Tenacious Review
Last Updated: September 19, 2017 I found the Spyderco Tenacious when I was looking for a good sized EDC knife on a budget. I did some research and saw that the Tenacious ticked a lot of my boxes. At the time I was i ... continue reading
Brief Spyderco Company History
Spyderco Knives was founded in 1976 by Sal and Gail Glesser. When Sal and Gail first started, they were selling their Spyderco Sharpmaker. It was their first and only product, and they drove around in a bus selling the sharpener at fairs and trade shows.
It wasn’t until 1981 that the Glesser decided to create their base of operations in Golden, Colorado. It was there they launched their first folding knife: a knife you could open with one hand and featuring a pocket clip, and the option of serrations. The rest, as they say, was history.
Spyderco Knives went on to become a major player in the knife industry, pioneering many innovations that lead to widespread recognition and commercial success. These days Spyderco is considered a leader in the realm of high performance pocket knives. Everything from their budget offerings to flagship models have been meticulously engineered and improved on over the decades. Here is a link to their corporate website to learn more about the company.
Best Spyderco Knives
Here is a list of the best and most popular Spyderco knives. I’ve reviewed dozens of their models, but here is a list of their best knives.
Paramilitary 2 – You don’t need to spend much time researching pocket knives to come across the Paramilitary 2. Dubbed the best edc knife by countless publications, and widely recognized as such, the Para 2 is a legend in stainless steel and G10. The combination of a generous handle, classic Spyderco lines, beefy construction, and a compression lock all meld together to create a workhorse. In response to the knife’s success, Spyderco has released the Para 2 in a near endless variety of colors and blade steels.
Sage Series – This series is a personal favorite of mine. Spyderco paid homage to pioneers in the knife industry with the Sage series. Each knife in the series recognizes a different person. The Sage 1 recognizes Michael Walker for inventing the liner lock and the Sage 2 recognizes Chris Reeve for the frame lock. The list goes on and I believe Spyderco is up to 5 knives now. What I like about the Sage series is the nice EDC friendly size and top notch materials and fit and finish. They all make for near perfect EDC knives in my book. Well worth checking out.
Delica – The Delica is a benchmark knife. Designed for the masses, it’s relatively inexpensive, lightweight, and practical. It’s a Japanese made Spyderco with VG-10 blade steel, a FRN handle with stainless steel liners, a robust lockback, and a 4 way positionable pocket clip. It’s slim and easy to carry, making it an easy daily carry. If you get into collecting knives you will need to check a Delica out at some point.
Endura – The Endura is the big brother of the Delica. It’s long and slender shape makes it an idea “tactical knife” or larger EDC. Once again it’s slim and lightweight, with everything you love about the Delica but in a bigger package.
Dragonfly II – The Dragonfly II is another personal favorite. It’s a little knife, but you can get pretty much any suburban EDC job done with it. Perfect for opening packages, going through mail, cutting fruit, and even some light woodworking. It’s small, but thanks to the ingenious curved handle you can easily get a full 4 finger grip on it. Although it may seem expensive for a small knife, it’s one you won’t regret purchasing.
Chaparral – The Chaparral is another classic Spyderco knife. I see it as something of a bridge between the Dragonfly II and the Sage series. It’s small, but not too small. I’d say it’s a perfect dress knife. Featuring stellar ergonomics, a razor sharp blade, it’s a beautifully made knife that flys under the radar.
Tenacious – The Tenacious is one of Spyderco’s first budget knives. It packs a lot of the features you will find on their pricier blades into a sub $40 package, including a fully flat ground blade, G-10 handle scales, skeletonized full steel liners, and a 4 way pocket clip. They do this by manufacturing the knife in China. The Tenacious is a tough beater knife that can also serve as an excellent larger EDC.
Spyderco Signature Design Influences
I have picked out a few themes in Spyderco Knives. Here are a few core components that make a Spyderco, a Spyderco:
The Round Hole – The first thing you will notice about a Spyderco is the trademarked Round Hole. This hole is sometimes referred to as a “Spyderhole” and it is used to easily open up the blade of a folding knife with one hand. The Round Hole is easy to use with gloves and can offer more to grab on to than your typical thumb stud or thumb disk.
Pocket Clips – Although these days we take pocket clips for granted, Spyderco was the first company to equip a folding knife with a pocket clip. This revolutionized the way people carried and used knives and transformed the industry. Pretty cool.
Bi-Directional Texturing – Spyderco is known for their unique bi-directional texture pattern on their FRN handled knives. Most notably you find this on the Delica, Endura, and the Dragonfly II. This slip-resistant texturing offers traction in the hand.
Spyderedge – This is a proprietary serration pattern consisting of one large serration alternating with two small serrations.
Spyderco Knives – Final Thoughts
I can’t think of a company that has created a more loyal fan base than Spyderco Knives. After spending some time getting involved in the knife community, it’s easy to see why.
First of all, Spyderco innovates. They are credited with the thumb hole of “Spyderhole” which is the deployment hole found in every one of their designs. They also were the first to use a pocket clip, and have come up with numerous other features; many of which have become patented.
Second, Spyderco listens. They spend a lot of time interacting with their most loyal fans and customers, and continually refine their designs. Some of their knives, like the Endura, have been in production for over 20 years. The knife has seen many improvements over the years, and history suggests that the Endura will continue to get better as Spyderco continues to listen and make improvements.
Spyderco also appeals to collectors and hardcore enthusiasts by offering limited edition batches of their knives, called “Sprint Runs.” These runs may feature a special kind of blade steel, or a different color handle – or they may be totally new and limited production designs. These sprint runs add a lot of fun to collecting Spyderco knives and a little exclusivity to the world of production knives.
Finally, Spyderco collaborates. Actually, this is something many production knife companies do, but Spyderco really has a way of collaborating with designers to produce unique pieces that still fit within the Spyderco “look.” To the uninitiated, Spyderco Knives will be known for making those “funny looking knives with the hole in the blade.” To a trained eye, Spyderco has created a product that almost transcends knifemaking.