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Thread: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

  1. #31
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    Christo Pull Hair Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I don't know where to start??? Kershaw knives are not bad at all but they are not up to par with Benchmade or the Spyderco knives. I have a few of each brand in question and I carry a Kershaw Leek quite often however Benchmade and Spyderco tend to use better steel (at least in the higher priced models).

    As for steel every real knife guy knows it is in the heat treat not the steel. I like D2 best so far and will not buy any 440/420/AUS6A stuff any more. A2 and 51600 is good stuff if heat treated right. Spyderco has used some steel I have no knowledge of. G10 for one Spydy's are made in Japan and perhaps other places as well, so they have steel (or at least steel names I am not up on ) that I do not know. Some may not even know 154cm is almost the same as ATS34 (it's a vacuum thang). For me I find the Spideys round hole easier to open than some oval shapes. I do like the AXIS lock Benchmade uses. If I had to pick just one knife company I would pick Benchmade how ever I do not have to pick just one so I can stay happy with all 3 you asked about.
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  2. #32
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I personally like more of Benchmade's and Spyderco's designs over Kershaw. As someone stated above, Kershaw truly is constantly improving in terms of getting up to date with the more popular steels.

    Something you should be aware of is that Kershaw generally doesn't have steels that are as popular as Benchmade and Spyderco, however there is a huge controversy over the true performance abilities of newer popular steels verses other not-so-popular steels. What you will generally hear is that S30V or VG-10 or (name your steel) is "better" than steels like 440A, AUS-6 and others. To reiterate, there is quite a big controversy as to the validity of these statements (the steels named above were for example purposes). There's a big question about hype vs unbiased reality.

    When choosing between these companies, I don't have to worry about customer service or quality. I choose based on the personal aesthetic preferences, which one is shaped in the "best" way to fit my particular needs and (almost more importantly) the fun factor. Kershaw has A LOT of assisted openers, Benchmade has the axis lock, balis andother fun stuff, and Spyderco has EXCELLENT practical designs and some other fun locks.
    Last edited by Ignoramus; 12-07-2006 at 11:13 PM.

  3. #33
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Wow guys, some great posts. Just the type of replys I was hoping for!

  4. #34
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I've carried a Spyderco Delica for three years (the same knife). It's still incredibly sharp.

    Last Christmas, my wife bought me a beautiful Benchmade. I carried it for 3 months and it became dull. I was quite dissapointed. I went back to the same battered Spydie and it's still sharp. I realize Benchmade will sharpen it for free, but I just don't have the time to mess with sending it in when I have a sharp Spyderco...and can buy two more new ones for the the price of the BM.

    My experience...YMMV.

  5. #35
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I wrote a review of two of the better known knives at midrange prices ($50-60) from Spyderco and Benchmade.

    http://candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?t=142924
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  6. #36
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I have many of each brand in my knife collection, and I love them both.

    I will say that I was very disappointed to see Spyderco offer some lower end models from Asia.

    I have no problem with them making knives in Japan. I love Japanese products, however, I will not buy from China or Taiwan.

    Good luck with your selection. Once you get a nice knife, you will want another, and another, and...

    Best,

    RL

  7. #37
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I would rank all three of these companies equally in terms of quality in that $50 sweet spot many companies aim for when producing good quality production knives a notch above the mass-market. The interesting thing about them is that each one approaches their knives differently, and each innovates where the other leaves off.

    For example, Benchmade and Kershaw often focus on mechanical precision and clever engineering (Axis lock and Ken Onion Speed Safe). Benchmade pays more attention to blade steel and more traditional "tool" type knives, while Kershaw pays a bit more attention to aethetics and streamlined, compact, assisted opening designs that never cease to amaze.

    Spyderco kind of marches to the beat of it's own drummer. Many designs look ungainly, they are not as compact as they could be for the blade, and they generally use the simple and comparitively stiff (albeit tried and true) lockback- no slick assisted openers for these folks. However, Spyderco founded their company on innovation and continue that trend while keeping a "if it ain't broke don't fix it" mentality. First to use H1 rustless steel in a production knife. First to mass produce a waved knife in a consumer price range (And many folks say it actually works better than the Emerson knives that hold the patent). Updates to popular lines that directly incorporate feedback from using customers. And, of course, the use of the excellent VG10 steel in knives of these quality for the price really sets the standard for quality vs. price IMHO.

    All three of these companies have something terrific to offer. Just to mention my EDC route in the past several years: Several Kershaws (chives and Leeks mostly), SOG Flash I (clever design, though the fit and finish isn't quite there), Benchmade 530 (thin and light with good steel- just a tad slower to open due to no AO and compact thumb studs), and, of course, Spyderco (Salt I, Cricket in SS, and my EDC for the past 3 months, an Endura 4 Wave). The Endura 4 Wave is definately a bigger knife than any other on the list, but it isn't too big in the pocket, opens even faster than an AO, and really feels like a solid tool in the hand. I've experimented with many options, but I can't imagine many other knives beating it out any time soon.

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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    You can't go wrong with a Spydie Native for the money. It is one of my EDC knives.


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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I like the new Native better.....


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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Quote Originally Posted by magic79
    I've carried a Spyderco Delica for three years (the same knife). It's still incredibly sharp.

    Last Christmas, my wife bought me a beautiful Benchmade. I carried it for 3 months and it became dull. I was quite dissapointed. I went back to the same battered Spydie and it's still sharp. I realize Benchmade will sharpen it for free, but I just don't have the time to mess with sending it in when I have a sharp Spyderco...and can buy two more new ones for the the price of the BM.

    My experience...YMMV.
    I'm having a difficult time understanding how this would be possible if both knives are plain edge. It sounds to me that you probably have a serrated Spyderco and a plain edge Benchmade, is that right? In terms of steels between the companies, Spyderco and Benchmade knives are about the same. However, fully serrated blades will hold an edge WAY longer than a plain edge with comparable steel. Just trying to figure this out.

  11. #41
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Spyderco knives tend to use better steel than Benchmades in the same price range. On the other hand, Benchmade does (and has offered) knives using tool steel like D2 and M2, which are even better than most of Spyderco's offerings.

    Also, edge retention depends on the way the knife was originally ground.
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Quote Originally Posted by carrot
    Spyderco knives tend to use better steel than Benchmades in the same price range. On the other hand, Benchmade does (and has offered) knives using tool steel like D2 and M2, which are even better than most of Spyderco's offerings.

    Also, edge retention depends on the way the knife was originally ground.
    Yeah, but what Magic said was that his Delica is sharp after 3 years and the benchmade was dull in 3 months. That's a 10:1 ratio. Spyderco doesn't have any steel that lasts 10 times longer than any of BM's steels.

  13. #43

    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    um, is it just me, or wouldn't the ratios be different because there are 12 months in a year?
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Quote Originally Posted by flash_bang
    um, is it just me, or wouldn't the ratios be different because there are 12 months in a year?
    My bad with the math...

  15. #45
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Yeah, but what Magic said was that his Delica is sharp after 3 years and the benchmade was dull in 3 months. That's a 10:1 ratio. Spyderco doesn't have any steel that lasts 10 times longer than any of BM's steels.
    Or, perhaps he uses the Benchmade that much more?

    I have to agree with the consensus that both companies make good products. I have carried all three. All things considered, the most important and best difference to my mind is Benchmade's Axis-lock. I've always liked the Spyderhole...I own almost every model AFCK variation there is, but the Axis-lock is easier to open and MUCH easier to close one handed. If you haven't tried one, you really should before you buy another quality knife.

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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Quote Originally Posted by magic79
    Last Christmas, my wife bought me a beautiful Benchmade. I carried it for 3 months and it became dull. I was quite dissapointed.
    I carry a 550 Griptilian that I really like, but the plain part of the blade doesn't seem to hold its edge for all that long. The blade is 440C and based on their website the new 550 Griptilian uses a 154CM steel.

    The 440C is very easy to sharpen, but I wonder if the 154CM would hold an edge longer.

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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Quote Originally Posted by perado
    All things considered, the most important and best difference to my mind is Benchmade's Axis-lock. I've always liked the Spyderhole...I own almost every model AFCK variation there is, but the Axis-lock is easier to open and MUCH easier to close one handed. If you haven't tried one, you really should before you buy another quality knife.
    I didn't like the Axis lock at first, but now I love it. Also my Benchmade has a hole in the blade which I prefer over a stud.

  18. #48
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Kershaw isnít even in the same class as either benchmade or spyderco.

    I own 4 benchmades. I own 2 spydercos. I buy knives to use, unlike lights, I've never become fond enough of them to buy to look at, if I'm going to spend my hard earned cash on it, it better work. That having been said, I'll probably never buy another benchmade. I thought they were the best (somewhat reasonably price) knifes on the planet until one day my brother asked me if I wanted to buy a spare spyderco off him. I said 'a spare what?' and it was all down hill from there.

    That day I acquired a partially serrated spyderco ladybug and its rode with me in my wallet since then. The quality on both benchmade and spyderco are excellent, however being so impressed with the ladybugs functionality, a few weeks later I picked up a native to replace my griptilian as an EDC.

    To bottom line it, both benchmade and spyderco make classy, solid, pretty reasonably priced, quality knifes. Spyderco, however, leaves benchmade in the dust in ergonomics. some people argue that spydercos knifes are funny looking, and I agree, they donít look like a 'traditional' pocket knife, because they arenít, they're the next generation of form and function for cutting tools. From the way my native balances itself it my hand to how I can squeeze on the handle as hard as I can and not feel any pressure points digging into my hands, IMHO, spyderco has truly redefined how a knife should perform.
    Last edited by thesurefire; 12-21-2006 at 11:50 PM.
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    SPYDERCO SPYDERCO SPYDERCO they make great knives IMHO
    but be sure to get quality steel, its all about the steel.

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  20. #50
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    i have more than one kershaw and multiple spydercos, my vote is in the spyderco camp for quality if you plan on using it. And kershaw if you want to impress someone with assisted opening. Just my .02
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    ther is alot to consider when buying a knife...most knives will be fine for light work, when you plan on really using your knife alot then you ahve to consider which steel is good for your needs, then which style knife you want, locking mechanism, size, blade style, price, serrations...etc? There is alot of things to consider...If you really do your homework you can find a knife that fits your budget and will work very well for what you need it for! The biggest peice of advice I can give it to really research what your looking for, and once you find a knife you likie shop around for prices...a single knife can sometimes varry between $30 in cost depending on where you buy it...So you can really save some $ if you shop around...
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I have been a Spyderco fan for many years. Bought several and given a few as gifts. Got to tour the factory with Rocky Mtn. Blade Collectors when they still had tours.
    Thesurefire, the other way around for me. I switched from my favorite Native (I have 3) to a mini Griptilion. The full sized Grip is too big for me to carry but I now have two minis and they are sweet! Back in the good old days even an inexpensive Pika and mini Pika were ATS-34.
    I have a few Kershaws but never really expected them to be Spyderco quality. I just buy what I like. My Kershaw Blaze is kinda cool to play with but it's made in Taiwan so who knows.

    Good thread. I've enjoyed reading this one for two weeks.

    Ken

  23. #53
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Benchmade make good knives - at the moment it's good to be able to get production versions of designs by the custom makers Mike Snody & Neil Blackwood from them. The axis lock is strong and easy to use.

    I own many more Spyderco's than Benchmade's however. Spyderco is a smaller company but plays well above it's weight in the market. They are very innovative, very much into ergonomics (which is why the knives sometimes look weird), and totally into customer service / listening to their customers. I've carried a knife every day of the last 15+ years and over this time all four of my EDC's have been Spyderco. Others get added for different jobs but I've always got one with a hole in the blade

    I've seen a couple of Kershaw's that I've rather liked over the years, but they just aren't in the same league as a Spydie or Benchmade.

    Good luck in your hunt !
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken 222
    Thesurefire, the other way around for me. I switched from my favorite Native (I have 3) to a mini Griptilion.
    Ken what steel do you like? The biggest factor for me was the way the handle fit in my hand, allowing a more comfortable grip, followed next by S30V stayed sharp much longer then my griptillion. I believe my griptillion was a early modle in 440C, but I donít exactly remember.
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  25. #55

    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I got a few knives for christmas so thought I would share my reviews.

    I got a spyderco (byrd) CARA CARA. I love the size of the knife, but you can definately tell that the build quality (of the byrd) is not as good as the spyderco's. This one is a lot bigger than I thought it was going to be. It has a black stainless handle which I do not like. The movement is not as smooth as my delica 4, but I am not sure if that is because of the metal handle or because thats just the way Byrd knives are. This knife is also made with an FRN handle and a G10 handle. I might pick up one of those soon and sell the one with the SS handle if I ilke it better.



    I also got a Kershaw Scallion. It has a plain edge and a polymer handle. At first I thought I would like this knife for EDC. It's a nice smaller compact size and fits the hand nice while cutting. I HATE the speed opening feature though. It's impossible to open with the thumb stud, so the only way to open the knife is with 2 hands or use the speed open tab on the bottom of it. I've been playing with this knife a lot over the past few days and managed to accidently slice my fingers twice. I really hate this speed opening feature. I think it may be more suited for a larger knife because this one is kind of small to grasp when closed.




  26. #56
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    That "assisted opening" muck is silly. Any modern knife will open as easily as a switch-blade. Under many state laws....and juries, the assisted opening knives ARE switchblades. Be Warned.

    The Kershaw knives are a far back third in quality. They market toward uneducated knife buyers.

    steve

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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Im sorry to say steve you are wrong, the assisted opening mechanism is not considered an automatic knife...This has been proven in a few different court cases in 3 different states...And Kershaws website guarantees that as well...They might be confiscated by a uneducated police officer if he sees you with one but it will have to be given back after the sistuation is conducted in court...but who wants to go to court, let alone has the time...but you will have to be doing somethign pretty stupid to have a LEO take away your knife in the 1st place...
    - JEFF


  28. #58
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    I have one Byrd knife, the G-10 Meadowlark, and I have to say the quality is superb. It almost makes me wonder why I spend more money for more expensive knives when the Meadowlark feels right up there in quality with its steel liners and G-10 handles. Also, it's very smooth to open.
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  29. #59

    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    Thanks Carrot......I think the reason why my cara cara is not smooth is because of the SS handle. I will pick one up with the FRN handle to compare. I like the FRN better than G10 because of the grippy surface.

  30. #60
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    Default Re: Spyderco, Kershaw, or Benchmade...?

    It's strange, Bill97z, because the G-10 Meadowlark has steel liners... Although both the G-10 and FRN versions were released after the original all-steel models...
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