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Thread: My First Knife

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* chamenos's Avatar
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    Default My First Knife

    after holding back for more than a year, i finally decided to take the plunge and scratch that itch that I've been having

    i was initially set on getting a spyderco of some sort after doing some online research, due to it's "user" qualities (e.g. simple and rugged construction) and it's distinctive styling.

    a few weeks ago i paid a visit to the local gadget shop, sheares. after handling a few models, i decided on the spyderco endura, because of it's affordability and ergonomics. i ruled out the smaller models like the delica, because i was unable to open them one handed, and they were too small to have a secure grip. models like the military and persian were too expensive for me to justify as a user/EDC knife. however, the only endura left in the shop was a tan-handled combo-edge model, but i wanted a black one so i decided to wait on the next shipment to come in.

    fast forward to last week, and i went down to sheares again. they'd received a new shipment of spydercos, but the enduras were backordered, so the only endura in the shop was the same tan-handled endura in the showcase.

    i had a bit of time to spare, so i played with offerings from the various brands on display, whilst taking to the guy behind the counter about the various steels, blade styles, and locking mechanisms. he mentioned that he'd just got a batch of benchmade griptilians in, so he brought out the 550s and 555s for me to peruse.

    on opening the blue boxes, the first thing that struck me was the impressive packaging, like the foam inlay and the little drawstring pouch that each knife came in. i removed the 550s first, since i'd earlier decided against the more compact folders like the delica.

    first impressions on the 550s were the ergonomics and build quality which were just superb. the chamfered edges of the thumbhole afforded my thumb enough purchase on the blade without whittling my thumbnail, and the blade slid open ever-so-smoothly. on pushing out the blade fully, the axis lock engaged the tang of the blade with a subtle click, without hesitance or any detectable binding of the blade prior to lock-up. all this with one hand.

    i was impressed, to say the least. i also noticed full metal liners running the length of the handles unlike the spydercos, and the clip which is more securely held in it's orientation relative to the handle with three screws, instead of the cut-out in the handle like the spyderco endura/delica. i'd earlier handled a user spyderco, and noticed some side-to-side play in the clip which i wasn't too enthusiastic about, when clipping it to my pocket.

    i was giving the 550s some serious consideration, when i decided to check out the 555s, just to see what it was about. now i was TRULY amazed! on seeing it's dimunative size, i expected delica-esque ergonomics but on handling it, i was proven completely wrong. i was still able to open it one handed comfortably, perhaps even more so than the 550s. in fact, the 550s now felt large and cumbersome in comparison! i spent 15 more minutes handling the mini-griptilian, before i wrote off the endura and walked out of the shop with my brand new 555s, which i've been playing/EDCing since then

    right now i can open my 555s in a variety of very fast methods, and the 440C blade has stood up well to my sweaty palms and the humid climate here, with no signs of rust spotting whatsoever. the blade is came razor sharp, and i'm considering getting myself a sharpening kit (spyderco's tri-angle sharpening kit) so i can maintain the blade myself, as opposed to using sheares' free sharpening service. now that i've seen and experienced the axis lock for myself, i don't think any other type of lock mechanism would ever suffice

    i really hope this newfound hobby doesn't become a money-sucking pit though
    -winston

  2. #2
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Excellent choice! I was a knife nut long before I got into flashlights; be careful, knives can drain your wallet even faster than lights,

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* Malpaso's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Great choice. I really like Benchmade knives, especially since they're made in the US.
    It's not that life is so short, it's that you're dead for so long.

  4. #4

    Default Re: My First Knife

    Good Choice! Same one I made. I was at the local Cabela's, considering the Gerber Air Ranger, the Strider and the Kershaw AR 3.00, but the Mini Griptilian won out. My kids had given me a gift certificate, so the cost wasn't too bad. While I was there, I showed the kid behind the counter and a customer how to use the Spyderco sharpener. It took a small folding Buck clone from dull dull dull to shaving sharp. They were impressed. The Griptilian is light, comfortable in my hand and unobtrusive, unlike the CRKT my co-worker just got from a local discount place. About like the ubiquitous Swiss Army Knife for low profile and not riling the natives & fern fondlers. I love mine.
    Last edited by sniper; 09-30-2005 at 06:45 AM.

  5. #5
    *Flashaholic* flashlight's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Hi Winston, sounds like you got yourself a great knife!

    I'm another knife newbie & I'm hoping to get one of the Mini-Griptilians like the Benchmade Mini Griptilian, Drop point, Combo edge, Blue handle BM556S-BLU or Yellow Handle BM556S-YEL. Did you notice if they have any of those & if yes how much they're priced at? How much did yours cost?

    Expect knives to cut a big hole in your wallet (pun intended).
    Last edited by flashlight; 09-30-2005 at 06:40 AM.

  6. #6
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    My first knife was a Ken Onion plain edge blacked out Chive, small, one hand quick opening, hefty for its size & razor sharp. I loved that little knife, ended up giving it to a friend who lost it
    You light up my life

  7. #7
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Quote Originally Posted by chamenos
    i really hope this newfound hobby doesn't become a money-sucking pit though
    Bwahahahahahahahahah. Just wait until you discover the really really really good stuff, custom made and limited productions. Big $$$$$$$$$ just like flashlights.
    Favortie Light: A2-BK-WH

  8. #8
    Flashaholic* ZeissOEM2's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    edit
    Last edited by ZeissOEM2; 08-26-2007 at 07:06 AM.

  9. #9

    Default Re: My First Knife

    IIRC only the mini's have full liners,the full size on has 3/4, but still there good knives. I've been a spyderco fan for a long time and I just recently started looking at BM's. I also picked up a D2 mini grip from Cabela's and it's been my EDC for the past two weeks.

    You probably made the right choice on the Endura. There's an updated model due out at the end of the year. Full steel liners,adjustable pivot and an upgraded blade profile are just a few of the updates. They're also updating the Delica in a similar way. And as an added bonus there's a ZDP Delica in the new design due out early next year. If my ZDP Calypso Jr. is any indication it's going to be a great knife.

  10. #10
    Flashaholic* simbad's Avatar
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    Evilgrin07 Re: My First Knife

    My first "real" knife was a Spyderco Delica S.Steel plain edge, very comfortable for the pocket. I just have four knives and my favorite is my mini Griptilian 555 sheepfoot blade 440C.
    I like small blades for EDC like 3in. max. and made of a light material like titanium. A small sebbie?
    Martin

  11. #11
    Flashaholic* Jumpmaster's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    I bought an OD green Griptilian (full-size) with black blade at my local PX...GREAT price too -- packaging was just the plastic clamshell type, but that's ok. I've been very happy with it. I also have the military issue Benchmade automatic and it is even better.

    Good choice there...

    JM-99

  12. #12
    Flashaholic* Wolfen's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    I gave a combo edge full size D2 Griptillian to a friend who is a US Marine. He took it with him to Iraq and he said he used it everyday. It came back in one piece (but dull) while a lot of his knives (S&W "brand" his dad bought for him) and other gear didn't.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Yeah, I love my Griptilian too, I bought it at the PX for 49.99 or so with no tax and i've had it for a year or so and while I've worn some of the finish off the blade its still sharp as hell (lifesharp is an awesome thing) with regular sharpening at home. I"ve even abused the knife quite a bit while camping and deep sea fishing, its been a prybar a flat head and a hammer and still works and holds up very well. Though I finally bought a Gerber LMP II ASEK for hunting, camping, and fishing.

    Thomas

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    Flashaholic jpfaff's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    My first knife was given to me by my grandfather. It was an original Cammillus Cutlery Boy Scout Knife. That's all it took. When I got that knife I treated it as though it were an HDS EDC UT 85. I still have that knive and many, many more. Whatever you choose keep 3 things in mind. A knive is only as good as it is made. A knive can only cut as good as it is sharp. And finally, A knive is only good as the person who cares for it.
    Jason
    Arc aaa premium, Surefire L1, Inova X1, Pelican 2c Sabrelight, And a few junkers...

  15. #15
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Yup, love the 555, but I really like the sharper tip if the MDP or 556. So, got both!!

  16. #16

    Default Re: My First Knife

    Quote Originally Posted by buba
    Bwahahahahahahahahah. Just wait until you discover the really really really good stuff, custom made and limited productions. Big $$$$$$$$$ just like flashlights.
    Im not into knives yet (although I fear I am getting close ) although when I was a kid (50 now) I had a few pocket knives I really liked (Boy Scout knife and some others). I really took care of them, cleaning, sharpening and such. But I was at a sporting good store in New York (Paragon Sports) getting yet another Surefire when I took a look at the knives in the cabinet a few feet away. Saw one that looked real nice and looked at the price, $1200 - holy crap. One next to it was $2000. Cheapest one in that case was $900. Geez. They did have other cases with other knives, including lots of Benchmades if I recall correctly, which looked very nice. I'll have to give the Benchmades a closer look now that I see how highly people think of them. Just what I need.....

  17. #17
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Paragon is a VERY high end knife store -- lots of nice custom made knives. Rather like going to look for a new family car and walking into the Bentley dealership.

    As for Benchmades, I've been buying them for many years and have never been disappointed, regardless of the price range. Very good choices of steel. They hold an edge and are easy to sharpen. Easy to keep the pivots and locks clean, too. Good choice of grip materials and I really like the number of blade designs they offer. In fact, the combo edge Mini-Griptillian is the only serrated edge I bother to carry.

    Now, have you heard about their balisongs?...
    "Show them a light, and they'll follow it anywhere..."

  18. #18
    Flashaholic* RA40's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    One of my earliest memories was wandering the California Custom Knife Show back in '88 or so (It was at a hotel near LAX at the time.) I was taken by some knives by a guy named Earnest Emmerson. Back then his locking liners were $500 and that was a shocking price to pay for a knife.

    Feeling rejected, I bought a Spyderco Centofantes. It is still with me wbut well worn. The tip has been broken, the rubber inserts are gone, the lock bar goes all the way to the opposite side...

    $500 is still plenty of $$$ but I see the craftsmanship a whole new way these days.

    I still would like a Benchmade.
    Mike

  19. #19
    Flashaholic* chamenos's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    thanks for all the encouraging comments!

    it's been about two weeks since i got my mini-griptilian, and i'm still 100% satisfied with it. there's nothing i'd change on the knife, at least not for my intended use. it's not often i can say something like that about stuff i buy, since i tend to be pretty anal about all the little details

    the only maintenance i've done on it so far is cleaning some sticky residue off the blade with paint thinner (from opening the packaging for my black A2 ), rinsing it under tap water, and oiling the pivot and lock mechanism. i know benchmade recommends miltec, but i've been using some break-free CLP that i have. so far so good!

    i must say that i really, really like the axis lock. so much so that i don't think i'd ever buy another knife with a run of the mill lockback or liner lock, at least not for EDC or hard use. the axis lock has all the dynamics and tactility of a ball-detent mechanism, yet it's design is so elegantly simple and fail-proof that i dare say it's almost as safe as a fixed-blade knife!

    my 555s usually rides clipped on my waistband, and it's so slim and lightweight that i sometimes forget it's there; i nearly sent it into the washing machine on a few occasions, and i carry it with me even when i sometimes leave my EDC flashlight at home!

    g1zm0, in view of your post i'm glad i didn't decide on the endura. there's nothing i hate more than having something i just bought become obselete. i might have to check out the updated endura when it gets released

    right now i'm already eyeing the benchmade model 42 (why yes i HAVE, chmsam! ), spyderco persian and civilian, though of course they're all still on my wish-list. i guess you guys were correct, and i spoke too soon in my first post! the benchmade model 42 is right at the top of that wish-list though

    gadgettravel and ra40, do check out the benchmades if you haven't done so already. compare benchmade's offerings with their competitors, and you'll see what the hype is all about. i'm quite sure you won't be disappointed! IMO it's all the little details that add up; e.g. torx screws instead of steel rivets, pivot washers, practical choice of blade steels & heat treatment, overall fit and finish, ergonomics, and last but not least the fantastic axis lock! (at least on the models which are offered with it)

    flashlight, i'm not sure if sheares had the blue-handled 556 in stock, as bernard had them in the store room, not on display. i'd call before going down personally though.

    what do you guys think of the spyderco triangle sharpmaker set? are there any other kits i should consider? keep in mind i'm a newbie, and an average user at that, so nothing too fancy or expensive

    anyway, back to playing with my new EDC toy!!!
    -winston

  20. #20

    Default Re: My First Knife

    Great choice, the 555s was also my first *real* knife. I sold it to get a large Doug Ritter Griptilian though.

  21. #21
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    winston - how much does the knife cost? thanks.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Nice choice on the minigrip. Both it and the Endura are two of my favorite users. Not expensive, solid and reliable. And the Axis is a smooth lock. I have one of those waved Enduras, but haven't used it much at all.

    I like the Sharpmaker, it's easy to use, also not expensive and flexible enough for me, you can do scissors and serrations, too. Comes with a video to help you along. The Lansky seems very popular, but for me, it takes too much work. But what do I know? Can only tell ya what works for me.

    cheers,
    daloosh

  23. #23
    *Flashaholic* flashlight's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Thanks for the reply chamenos.

    Please PM me & amlim the price if you don't mind. Thanks.

  24. #24

    Default Re: My First Knife

    Oh my, oh dear....

    Im going to be a block or two away from Paragon tomorrow. Im feeling my wallet opening already. I almost got an A2 last time I was there. Now Im going to be hearing the siren song of the Mini Griptillian as well. Oh dear

  25. #25
    *Flashaholic* flashlight's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    I just got a Benchmade Benchmite 310AS Rainbow Anodized Ltd. Edition & I love it! although it's technically not my first knife as I had a Boker Ceramic 2030 which I sold away as I found it too small to handle properly. The Benchmite is not really that much bigger either but it looks way nicer. I'm eyeing a BM Mini-Grip next.

    Last edited by flashlight; 10-12-2005 at 09:32 PM.

  26. #26
    Flashaholic* SJACKAL's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Congrats on your first knife Winston, the E1E tailcap put to good use?

    Congrats on your new knife too Cyril, hope to see your own photos soon.

    Knives could sometimes be even more addictive than flashlights, haha. Don't remember which was my first knife, but the itch starts from a few SAKs



    To a few multitools



    To my first higher end production folder



    To more folders



    To more folders and fixed blades




    And now I practise restraint and focused my attention to flashlights, fortunately I am not in the USA, or else I would had moved up to custom knives

    But I did moved up to custom lights

  27. #27
    *Flashaholic* flashlight's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    Great pics & knives SJACKAL! Remind me never to ask you to show me your collection!

  28. #28
    Flashaholic* SJACKAL's Avatar
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    They are meagre compared to what our friends in the US have. Its all you guys' fault, all the recent talks about buying new knives had me tempted. Was planning for a new Jil Lite and a tritium watch, now I am in a dilema. ullhair:

  29. #29
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    Default Re: My First Knife

    SJackal - Wow !!! Nice knives.

    Flashlight - Nice BM... I like the rainbow colours.

  30. #30

    Default Re: My First Knife

    Wow, different strokes. A couple of years ago I bought both a mini grip ($55) and a delica ($41) off the net, never having handled either. I expected that the mini grip would become my every day carry. Long story short, I found the mini grip handle just slightly too small for my hand, while the delica was everything I could have wanted. The delica remains my EDC, while the mini grip stays clipped to my easy chair, relegated to opening mail.

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