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Attn: Sal Glesser and Will Fennel

Jim March

Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
Oct 7, 1998

There's a way to build a "maximum combat folding fighter" without going to a 6" blade.

It's called the Muskrat. Take a pair of more-or-less conventional 3.9" range "tactical folders" like the EDI Genesis or Spyderco Police/Military and "graft them together" in the same grip, with a blade opening in each direction.

Spyderco already makes something close to perfect, if it was "scaled up" dramatically: the C39 Mini Dyad at: http://www.spyderco.com/knife/cat_lwc39.html

A "Combat version" should have both blades with points, but one serrated, one plain would be a natural and may get some business among purely utility-oriented buyers. The Mini Dyad is I believe an "inline" type where the blades overlap and the spines/lockbuttons are "inline" with each other. That leads to too thin a blade for a fighter, you'll want a "staggered spines" design.

Both Spyderco and EDI make tacticals that are overall very slender. Adding enough width for a second blade and a thin liner between them wouldn't bulk up the grip too badly. The existing blade types and a good chunk of other tooling could be recycled into such a design.

So why do it?

Because in a fight, the other guy's grip style (reverse grip versus a forward) gives many clues about his next move. IF HE'S DOING BOTH AT ONCE, YOU'VE GOT A LOT MORE WORRIES. The intimidation factor goes through the roof, the guy you're facing with such a little horror is more likely to run like a bunny. This design absolutely maximizes the lethal potential of legal sub-4" class folders in a way that no laws anywhere are set up to block.

The *only* folder I consider a match for a 6" megafolder is a double 4" Muskrat - and you could build 'em with your existing blade patterns and lock designs. I'll fork over $250 at least for a decent production version; the Genesis is running $125 on the street so this is definately workable.

I don't thing Benchmade is radical enough to do a "double AFCK", I think you gents might just have what it takes.

Jim March
The Mini Dyad is not "in line," but basically two lockbacks next to each other. Relatively thick for a short little wee pen knife, as a matter of fact.

In memory of an earlier mention of the fighting muskrat in the forums, I mentioned the idea of a big nasty Dyad to Sal, at the SHOT show I think, and he showed me one way someone could come to grief by using that in a fight. I don't speak martial arts well enough to describe it. I suspect that an untrained person could cut himself trying some fast and furious moves with a double-pointed knife against a hostile target.

On the other hand, a full-size end-to-end two-bladed utility knife wouldn't be a bad idea at all.


James, thanx for the correction on the Dyad pattern.

As to "potential self mutilation in a fight", one thing not always obvious is that a good variant does *not* have the two blades totally in line in the "long direction". Hmmm...what I mean is, instead of the fully-open piece being straight in profile, the whole thing curves. Both have what Mad Dog calls "positive included blade angle".

So if you're experienced at handing such, as you bring your wrist close to your torso you angle the cutting edges away from yourself, and you're perfectly safe.

The other key is, any technique that involves having your off hand near your blade hand, the only blade it's safe to attack with is the "point forward" one. You can attack in reverse only by doing motions that "spread the two hands".

Besides "threatening looks", it's incredibly hard to do a disarm on one, especially if you do Saber in the point-forward. Saber puts the reverse blade back alongside the forearm and covers grabs extremely well...in fact, the design takes Saber to a WHOLE new level.

And a simple clench switches to both Icepick and Gorilla.

Please, guys, just take two standard 4"ers and hold 'em back to pack, see what I'm talking about. It'd be unique and potent.

Jim March

Sounds like what you REALLY want is a pocketable folding Klingon Bat'leath (SIC)!

Sorry, just couldn't resist especially since the positive included angle bit describes Worf's blade well <hehehehehe>


Bald is beautiful! Rub a dome for luck today!

I've handled the Dyad, and thought it was a cute little toy. I would DEFINITELY be interested in something like that with blades ideally around 3.95" each (yeah, legal considerations - after a run-in with our company security, I now carry a 6" metal ruler with me to prove my rightiousness - it's more accurate than their 'palm' measurements, and some of them seem to have mighty narrow palms). I'd certainly go $150 or so for a production run (I think I heard somewhere that Spyderco was coming out with a 'real' Dyad, rather than a mini - or are we still boycotting them?) or twice that for a nice handmade. Anyone else interested?


Spyderco should have a full size Dyad (2 3-1/2" blades, 1 plain with a point, 1 serrated sheepfoot at the SHOT Show. Jim, I imagine it would pretty simple to get some custom guy to grind a point on the sheepfoot.
While you're here, I got a quick question for you. What was the impetus behind the Civilian? It's a very intriguing knife but I'm not sure if it's a defensive weapon or some type of combo utility/tactical folder. I'm sure it's a major conversation peice whenever it is taken out of a pocket.

Any comment?


~Greg Mete~
Kodiak Alaska


That's a good start!

Doing sheepsfoot on one end wouldn't severely hurt the combat ability...especially if you're using it in the "Saber forward, primarily a forward fighter, but with wrist covered from grabs" Muskrat style.

One suggestion you're probably doing already: make the sheepsfoot end like a current Mariner/Rescue type where the blunt spine hits the point at a bit of an angle so it'll still stab.

3.5" is...OK, not perfect. But it'd be easier to pass off as a utility piece, between that and the sheepsfoot end. You might be able to get away with that piece in 3" limit crazytowns like Glendale, so it's a worthy addition to a freak's arsenal. I *will* buy one; I suspect Thaddeus who's facing a lot more of the tighter SoCal local ordinances will have his ears perked up.

Kewl, it'll sell very well. Scale it up just a TAD more, and maybe offer the 3.5" version in double-pointy versus a sheepsfoot and you'll really be cookin'.

Some people might actually shorten some to 3" per blade for weird local rules, the Muskrat will maximize such "peewee's" combat potential.

Jim March
Jim - I lied, measured the Dyad proto this morning. 3.2" per blade from hilt to tip.
Greg - Spyderco is involved from time to time with special projects. The Civilian was the result of some conversations with some DEA guys. The scenario went like this; We have a guy working undercover in a "crack house". He can't carry a piece. He has no Martial bladecraft skill. Design a knife that he can, if discovered, quickly deploy and employing only a point forward slashing technique fight his way to safety. It is strickly defensive in design. It is under the 4" blade length limit that is the "socially acceptable limit" It will cut through kevlar, blue jeans, leather or ?? Since it is not intended for stabbing, it has no forward expansion. It does have sufficient rear expansion to "pull" it out should the blade become entangled. It is limited production and not promoted to the general public. You won't find it in our catalogs. Special favor for special need. The knife is popular with professional travelers that have to be in "bad neighborhoods" for occupational reasons. The G-10 handle version will replace the aluminum version during '99. Hope this helps.
California note - That "three inch rule" in cities like LA, Glendale, Burbank, et al., only applies to open carry. Since most of the knife is in the pocket that makes it concealed, doesn't it? (Oregon residents, of course, will argue that if you can see the auto's clip, it isn't concealed!) Concealed carry of sharp objects in California is regulated by the state law, not local law, with the section that should get the DA to drop the case for a folded megafolder, once your expensive lawyer waves it in his face.

I've found that the Civilian does a pretty good job of trimming ivy, but it's definitely not the knife of choice for slicing bagels.


Hello everybody!
I've been on a short 'holiday hunt' with friends and family the last couple of days, and boy has the forum been active.

First I would like to welcome Mr Sal Glesser to the crowd. Sal, I know you are able to provide so much cutlery knowledge and insight members of this forum that I am excited about having more 'industry input' from the larger perspective that can come from the head office at SPYDERCO. Sal, I also belive that this forum is great source of information for members of our industry, and hope that it is able to help SPYDERCO as much as it has helped EDI Knives. To the members of the forum, Sal has always been a great 'sharer' of knowledge, whom I have always admired for his open minded view of what knives can and should be expected to do, instead of the traditional cutlery industry's status quo. If Mr. Glesser will stop in to see us here from time to time, prepare for an education.

On to Jim's request! Jim, I know you have been chasing the idea of a modern 'tactical' muskrat for some time now, and I can understand your specific needs because of your local and regulatory concerns. I will talk it over with our design team at our next product meeting, but I will be honest, we have a very full plate right now, design wise. We are a very new company, and new products have to be planned very carefully at this stage of our companies developement. I'm afraid that the 'Tactical Muskrat', would be targeted at a small market, and burdened with a awful high retail selling price, to make alot of sense for EDI now. Any company, but especially a young one, has to be very careful when planning a new product introduction.

But Jim, don't let this slow you down! I appreciate the input, and while we[EDI] may not be in a position to provide a product that fits your needs now, we will be trying to in the future. To do that, we need to know what you want/need. Give Spyderco's new DYAD a try. If its not big and mean enough, the custom route awaits you. If I can be of any help looking for a custom maker for you, let me know.

Best Regards,

Will Fennell/EDI Knives
Will, the "tactical Muskrat market" may indeed be small...but if you own ALL of it, that could be big money. By recycling Genesis major parts like the blades you could keep costs down somewhat, I'd think...the Genesis is a GREAT knife and would make an excellent double.

Who else here would buy a "push-me-pull-you" Genesis-based Muskrat?

Jim March
Thanx, Will.
Jim - Phil Gibbs has made a few "Double Civilians". He uses titanium for the scales and offsets the two folded blades in the handle for a thinner carry. With a little practice, it's possible to "snap open both blades at once. Awesome in appearance, but I believe suicidal to do anything with except pose. He talked about making a Police/Civilian double. Very difficult to get, he has a waiting list, 30 new projects and a new baby, but I think that might be your "huckleberry".

How do I get ahold of this guy?

I -=WANT=-. NOW (or sooner).

I had a friend who called his Civilian a "Klingon teething ring". Frightening, I know people as wacked as I am...

Sal, you *have* seen The Outsider, right? An attempt to add stabbing/chopping properties to a grossly enlarged Civilian fixed blade?

Jim March
Hey ever since I heard Jim talk about a double ended muskrat I have thought about a double end civilian, I have tried to figure how to open both blades simultaniousely, and how to lock blades open. I thought about a split backspring with a gap and a bar that would press up locking blades open. Jim I have lost some sleep on it. If you come up with a reasonable facsimile I would be interestd. I would like the contact info for Phil too.

Phil Gibbs is a buddy of Sal's and mine. I got to know him when I worked at Camillus. I'm not real sure what Phil's title there would translate to, but he basically does design engineering/R & D for them. He also builds a few custom pieces on his own time. The Double Civilian, I've also heard him call it the 'Horns of the Buffulo' is one of his creations. Its real 'impressive'. Both blades fold into a single slot/handle made possible by Phil's/Camillus' patented 'offset lock spring'. The whole package is slim and well done. They are also very pricey. I'll check with Phil[and ask him to come on here and tell you about the knife too], but I'm pretty sure they are $1000+. I know his waiting list is long.

The regular G-10 Civilian siuts me fine, theres one in my back pocket now.....

Best Regards,

Will Fennell/EDI Knives
I just talked to Phil, he said that he will try to come to the forum [probally tomorrow]. Yes the price is in the ballpark. If you have any questions, his email is cutlery@aol.com .

HELP! Sticker shock!



Yo, Alan Folts, if you're around: how much to take two off-the-shelf EDI Genesis 1s, rip one of the grip slabs off of each and do a good "graft job"? I'd rather have two more conventional blades than a pair of Civilians; I don't think the stabbing effectiveness is all that great...although you CAN adapt.

Tuesday I'll take some measurements of Dale Seago's EDI G1; it should be simple to calculate the total width you'd end up with.

Oh, as to "how to open them", the simplest is a thumbpush, flip, second push. It's also possible to do a "double snap", depending on design. I've owned several mostly pathetic variants; at the moment I also own a pair of CRKT Apaches grafted together with JB-Weld (the "glue of the gods) and it works, but it's MASSIVELY fat. I can actually pinch it at dead center and do a "popping outward" motion that flicks both open at once, which is fairly impressive. As soon as I score another batch of Kydex I'll see what I can do about a belt carry rig that'll support it, as is it's just massive pocket overload. The only way to get two flats was to ditch both clips; to do this up RIGHT you'd need one clip available.

Jim March
Real interesting concept,hmmmmm,y`know Jim there`s one thing you`ve just GOT to try. How bout 2 Vaqueros muskrat style? Heh heh heh. Should end up about 18" across open,talk about Klingon weaponry! Are they still on sale at SMKW? Dunno if you`d want to fight anyone with it and it might not be that useful otherwise but it sure would be a conversation piece!