Spyderco 2023 Prototypes Page Update

April 30, 2023

I finally got around to updating my Prototypes page, with the new 2023 production samples that were shown at the 2023 Amsterdam Meet. The Prototypes page features all the Spyderco prototypes I was allowed to photograph and share since 2006.

2023 – Spyderco Production Samples

spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_military2_1 spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_lightweightnativechief_1 spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_stretch2xlnishijin_1
Military 2, Native Chief Lightweight, Stretch 2 XL Nishijin

spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_paramilitary2salt_1 spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_spyoperasprintrun_1 spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_lilnativewharncliffe_1
Para Military 2 Salt, SpyOpera Sprint Run, Lil’ Native Wharncliffe

spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_microjimbo_1 spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_lilnativelightweight_1 spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_manbugleaf_1
MicroJimbo, Lil’ Native Lightweight, Manbug Leaf

spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_countercritter_1 spyderco_amsterdammeet2023_spydercollector_sharpkeeper_1
Counter Critter, SharpKeeper

Video: Lil’ Native Lightweight – Spyderco Design Production Sample 2023

March 14, 2023

This Lil’ Native Lightweight production sample was shown at the 2023 Spyderco Amsterdam Meet. 

For a more detailed look, photos and information, go to my earlier post on the Lil’ Native Lightweight production sample.

Lil’ Native Lightweight – Spyderco Design Production Sample 2023

March 10, 2023

The Lil’ Native Lightweight features a really light and compact blade, even compared to the MicroJimbo and Lil’ Native Wharncliffe. The linerless FRN handle really makes the Lil’ Native a featherweight. The Lil’ Native Lightweight is very similar to the lightweight Dragonfly. However, the Lil’ Native is made in the USA, like all Native designs.


Closed: 3.47 inch/ 88 mm
Overall: 5.92 inch / 150 mm
Blade: 2.45 inch / 62 mm
Edge: 2.05 inch / 52 mm
Thickness: 0.125 inch / 3.2 mm?
Steel: CPM S30V
Weight:  1.55  oz / 44 g
Grind: Full-flat
Lock: Back Lock
Handle: FRN
Carry: Ambi
Clip: Tip-up
Origin: USA

I have no information on pricing or release dates.

Native Chief Lightweight – Spyderco Design Production Sample 2023

March 8, 2023

The Spyderco Native Chief Lightweight was another large folder that was shown at the 2023 Amsterdam Meet. The first thing I noticed when handling it, was the weight. Or rather the lack of weight. There are no liners in the handle of the Native Chief Lightweight. Combined with such a large blade, the lightweight effect in the hand is striking. Apparently, a significant amount of engineering went into the lock to keep it strong enough for a knife this size and this light. The screw inserts for the clip mounting options are molded into the FRN. When you turn the knife over to look inside the handle, you’ll notice a web-like pattern. This also adds a lot of structural strength to the knife.

As a left-handed knife user, I thoroughly appreciate the 4-way clip mounting options. And the mid-back lock makes the Native Chief fully ambidextrous.


Closed: 5.08 inch / 129 mm
Overall: 9.08 inch / 231 mm
Blade: 4.08 inch / 104 mm
Edge: 3.58 inch / 91 mm
Thickness: 0.145 inch / 3.7 mm
Steel: CTS BD1N
Weight:  2.96 oz / 84 g
Grind: Full-flat
Lock: Back Lock
Handle: FRN
Carry: Ambi
Clip: 4-position
Origin: USA

I have no information on pricing or release dates.

Spyderco C223 Para 3 Lightweight Exclusive Review

November 3, 2019

The Para 3 lightweight was the belle of the ball at the 2019 SHOT Show. Apart from being the first lightweight compression lock, it also featured CTS-BD1N steel that got a lot of attention. Having been around Spyderco knives for some 20 years, I knew I wanted to stay away from that first edition of the Lightweight Para 3.  I like colored knives, and black usually just doesn’t do it for me. I knew that a nice colored variant, as an exclusive or sprint run, would turn up soon enough. And here it is, the red C223PRD Para 3 Lightweight, and exclusive variant for DLT Trading.

DLT Trading has quite a few Spyderco exclusives in it stable. They all feature red G10 handles and M390 steel. The Para 2, Manix and Para 3 all received this treatment. This lightweight is a first, in that it appears to be their first FRN handled exclusive. It’s still red and also features M390 steel though. It is also the first Para 3 Lightweight exclusive to hit the market. I think we’ll see more lightweight exclusives in the future though.

For us old-timers, it’s still a bit awkward to see so many sharp red handled folders from Spyderco. For many years, red handles were reserved for drones or training knives. The Calypso Jr. & Jess Horn lightweight sprints did come before the red C223, but they had a distinct burgundy color. It really is a strikingly different shade of red, compared to the bright red FRN of the Delica and Endura Trainers. The shade of red on this Para 3 Lightweight seems lighter than the burgundy FRN we saw before and a bit darker than the FRN handle of a Delica trainer.

First impressions
This is my first Para 3 lightweight and I like it a lot. It feels -very- light, even lighter in the hand than an FRN Native and a Lightweight Manix. The lock-up is solid, and remained so during the past weeks of carry and use. The closed blade was a little off-center but that is only a cosmetic problem.

I’m not the world’s biggest fans of fold-over wireclips, but this one worked nicely. The tension of the clip, combined with the smooth FRN surface that interacts with the clip, made it very easy to draw the folder from my waistband or pocket. The FRN pattern is nice and grippy, but it is significantly less aggressive than on my Manix or Native Lightweights. The rest of the Para’s grip is very familiar. This is a very solid and ergonomic compact working folder.

Onto the good part. M390 steel. I’m not much of a steel junkie, as I never test blades to their limits. I do like to carry, use -and in that way ‘play around’ with various steels. I loved super blue steel for its performance for example. But I also easily switch to VG-10 which is one of my favorite steels actually.  Sal Glesser explained to me that super blue makes for a ‘hungry edge’, when I related my experience with it. You see, I kept on looking for food to cut with it. M390, in my opinion, is a ‘sticky edge’.

Whenever I start a cut, the M390 edge stay in there to finish it. The sharpness also seems to stick around M390, for a long time.  Your mileage may vary, as my knife-uses are rather mundane. My EDC-needs rarely require more than cutting envelopes, fruit, cardboard etc.… To test a new knife I creep into the kitchen to see if I can help prepare the food instead of only cleaning up after eating it.

I’m happy to have waited for this exclusive to dive into the Para 3 lightweight. Since it’s the first of its kind, I’m sure plenty of collectors will jump on this run. So don’t wait and start saving. Something tells me, there will be -many- more exclusives of the Spyderco Para 3 lightweights.

Check out specs of the Spyderco C223 Para 3 Lightweight at the Spyderco.com website, and find out more details and background information at Spydiewiki. Also, see the DLT Trading website for this and other Spyderco exclusives.

Video: Spyderco 2019 Production Sample – Sage 5 Lightweight

April 2, 2019

See this post for more photos and information on the Spyderco Sage 5 Lightweight Production Sample.

Spyderco 2019 Production Sample – Sage 5 Lightweight

March 26, 2019

I made a rookie mistake when ‘judging’ the new Sage 5 Lightweight, I went by its looks. The new grip pattern looked different, and therefore a bit ‘wrong’. Then I picked up the knife, and ‘got it’. Are you familiar with the grip effect on the FRN pattern slipits, like the UK Penknife, Urban or Squeak? Did you notice how the pattern feel smooth when you move your fingers ‘up and down’ on the handle? And how it gets very tacky when you move ‘forward’ towards the blade? Imagine that effect times ten, and that is how this handle pattern feels -to me- on the new Sage 5 lightweight.

Eric shared at the meet how Spyderco wanted to make lightweight compression locks for a long time. It required the introduction of new polymers to make it a reality. A compression lock exerts a lot of force on the handle, and this new lightweight stuff can take it. Personally, I’m not the world’s biggest Sage fan, but I can certainly get into many other famous Spyderco compression lock folders in a lightweight format!


Overall Length: 18,2 cm / 7.17 inches
Blade Length: 7,6 cm / 3 inches
Blade Thickness: 3 mm / 0.11 inches
Weight: 77 grams / 2.7 ounces

I have no information on pricing or specific release dates.

Spyderco 2014 Production Sample – Native 5 Lightweight

March 10, 2014

The Native 5 Lightweight was a nice surprise, as I didn’t remember seeing this version last year. The handle has no liners in it, but there are little steel ‘barrels’  with threading in the handle, for a positive lock-up of the clip screws when you want to set up the clip for e.g. left-handed or tip-down carry. This one’s definitely on my wish list.