Spyderco Amsterdam Meet 2017 Photography Practice

February 19, 2017

It’s almost that time of year again, when Spyderco comes to Amsterdam to give us European knifeknuts a look at the new prototypes that are in development in Golden, Colorado, USA, Earth. I hope to be able to create a, hopefully passable, meet report again this year. A few weeks ago, I dusted off my portable photo studio and got in some practice. I usually shoot outside, so I need the practice with this portable indoors set-up.

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Photography for the Amsterdam Meet is an interesting event. It’s a lot of fun and it can get pretty hectic. Spyderco usually brings about 50 prototypes that sail by my table after 80 knifeknuts handled it. With that amazing amount of prototypes, there’s no time for me to change light set-ups, camera settings or to carefully adjust position, distance etc. So I’m aiming for more for a ‘well-oiled production process’ rather than ‘fine-tuning every single shot’. I shoot as much as I can and afterwards I puzzle which prototypes can be published and which cannot. Then I edit and upload them as soon as possible, after attending the IWA trade Show in Germany (i.e. European SHOT Show).

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I’m happy with these results. I definitely see some areas for improvement, but I think they’re better than the photos I took last year. Mind you, I have no illusion about my skills. I’m certainly no @sharpbycoop. Just an amateur enthusiast who loves Spyderco knives. Thanks for watching!

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Spyderco C98 Poliwog
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Spyderco C92TQP Kopa Turqoise
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Spyderco C114 Delica 4 Lightweight Flatground Purple

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Spyderco C81GCMO2 Paramilitary 2 Camo
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Spyderco C54GBN Calypso
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SHOT Show 2017 – New Knives from Spyderco

January 25, 2017

Last week, I visited the SHOT Show in Las Vegas and I got a closer look at some of Spyderco’s new knives for 2017. With Spyderco permission, I used my trusty pocket camera to take some close-up footage of the following knives, in order of appearance:

  • FB39GP Sustain
  • C187CFP2 Rubicon 2
  • FB35SBK ARK Serrated
  • C215GP EuroEdge
  • C170BBKP Karahawk All Black
  • C205GFBLP Lil’ Lum Chinese Folder Blue Nishijin (Sprint Run)
  • C217GS Caribbean Leaf & C217GP2 Caribbean Sheepsfoot
  • C90PBK2 Stretch 2 FRN
  • C69GP3 Lil’ Temperance 3
  • MYLS Manbug Rescue Salt
  • C11FPWCBK Delica 4 Lightweight Wharnecliffe
  • C224GP Lil’ Sub-Hilt

2017 will be another great year for my Spyderco collection and carry rotation! I’m really looking forward to many of the new releases. Judging from brief handling, the new designs that stood out for me were the Lil’ Temperance 3 (great handling and feel, reminiscent of the original), the EuroEdge (impressive grinds and gorgeous handle), Lil’ Lum with blue nishijin scales (the classy colorful handle really makes this a ‘true’ gent’s folder, much better than black G-10) and the Lil’ Sub-Hilt (don’t care much for its bigger brother, but I really like the blade grind, heft and compact size of this one). I’m sure I’ll wind up with a serrated ARK, Wharnecliffe Delica 4, Manbug Rescue Salt and FRN Stretch 2 as well though.  You know how that goes, right?

And in case anyone wonders, I don’t have any information on release dates or pricing. Thanks for watching!


Spyderco Brend/Pirela Mamba Review

December 11, 2016

The Mamba is simply awesome. Period. It is not, however, a good EDC. At least in my book it isn’t. I think this feeling applies to many Mamba owners. I think we’ll see plenty of Mamba fan-pictures online, but I doubt I’ll ever see (m)any pics of that sweet curvy black blade all scratched up from use.  

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As is the case with many new Spyderco knives, the Mamba was love at first sight for me. I knew right away this knife would be too big for comfortable everyday carry. And that blade would not excel in any of my daily cutting tasks. And yet, it’s a great design; a beautiful knife that just screams ‘hell yeah!’  And in my book, sometimes, that’s fine. Not every knife in my collection has to be a purely functional folder.

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Blade
The Mamba’s blade is all sweeps and curves, and the flipper adds a lot of ‘panache’ as well as a functional guard. The coating is applied very evenly and it’s a kind of see-through burnished black color. I think this makes for an interesting visual effect when you study the coating from different angles.

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The major downside of the blade is well-known and plenty discussed in YouTube comments and forum threads, that awful dull heel. Because of the deep plunge grinds, the hollow grinds don’t come immediately together for an edge at the heel of the blade. This results in about a centimeter of non-sharpened blade. And that’s a shame from a user’s point-of-view.

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It doesn’t really matter to me, as I appreciate those sweet grind lines a lot more than the edge. Don’t get me wrong though, this knife came very sharp from the box. I cut myself a handful of times when my fingers didn’t move out of the way fast enough, when I closed the blade.

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Lock
The action is extremely smooth. The liners are so thick, I feel it’s really more of Reeve-style integral lock than a linerlock. The lock’s ball detent is very positive, but once you move past it, the blade absolutely flies open. The Mamba is perhaps the fastest opening knife in my collection. The lock is massive and the lock-up is solid. I can’t detect play in any direction when the knife is locked. The detent is perhaps a bit too strong, but considering the size and mass of the blade, that’s probably a good thing.

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Handle
The Mamba’s handle was mainly designed by Joel Pirela and it looks stellar. It feels even better. The handle is very comfortable and ergonomic……for edge-out grips. Your hand locks into the handle like a glove, but it’s not a versatile handle that you could easily use for peeling apples, potatoes etc.… For actual utility work that requires an edge-in grip, I think you’d better reach for a different knife. The Mamba is hard to control for these types of detailed cutting chores.

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The carbon fiber looks superb, and I love the details and facets in the handle. The Mamba features stellar fit & finish work. On the downside, the handle is -to me- simply too big, thick and angular to comfortably carry in my pocket or waistband. This is one of those knives in my collection that just won’t be seeing any serious pocket time.

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Clip
The Mamba features a custom clip that is more ‘Spyderco’ than the rest of the design. It mimics the familiar hourglass shape clip we see on almost all spydies these days, but the three-screw attachment is different from what we’ve seen so far from Golden, Colorado. The clip works well though, the tension is fine. I appreciate the black bug on the shiny spring steel, it fits the design very well.

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Overall
When it comes down to it, I strongly feel that getting a Mamba is not a pragmatic and practical decision-making process to fulfill a particular cutting need. If you’re even a casual knifeknut, you’ll likely to be drawn to those spectacular features of this audacious design. And there’s nothing wrong with that. I’ve enjoyed many an evening enjoying a movie, nursing a Talisker in my left hand and the Brend/Pirela Mamba in my right hand. As the famous YouTuber would say: ‘life is good’.

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9/11: Fifteen Years Later

September 11, 2016

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Started an Instagram account

July 2, 2016

On most of my spare down-time moment, I’m often found messing around with my EDC du jour. It’d be easy to take a picture or two, but they  never turn out good enough to create an entire blog post around. Twitter helps, but it’s not optimal to share images. Enter instagram, which the rest of the world has embraced many years ago. I started an account there as well, to complement this page. You can find and follow me on instagram @thatspydercollector.

#spyderco slysz bowie & ti lum chinese folder today #spydercollector #knifestagram #usn #edc #clipit

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Spyderco 2016 Prototypes Overview

April 20, 2016

I’ve collected all the 2016 Spyderco Prototypes in the overview below. Click on the prototype name of thumbnail image to check out all the photos and videos. I’ve also added this overview to the Prototypes page.

ATR, Brend/Pirela Mamba, Cara Cara 2 Ti
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Dragonfly HAP40, Lil’ Lum, Ouroboros
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Robin 2 Ti, Reinhold Rhino, Rubicon G10/CF
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Ladybug HAP40, Pattada, Nirvana
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Lil’ Nilakka, Native 5 40th Anniversary, Magnitude
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TAC 1s, Sage 5, Jumpmaster 2
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Meadowlark 2 Ti, Terada Kitchen Knife, Rock Salt Sprint
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Snap-It Salt, Sustain, Packer
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SpydieChef
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Video: Spyderco Booth at IWA 2016

April 10, 2016

A short video impression of the Spyderco Booth at the 2016 IWA Show in Nuremberg Germany. I included some close-up footage, which starts at 1:41 , of some of my favorite new designs this year. These include the Nirvana, Mamba and Native 5 40th Anniversary prototypes.