My LC200N Mule Rusted. How is that possible??

Discussion in 'Spyderco' started by neffarious, Feb 19, 2018.

  1. neffarious


    Jun 23, 2012
    This is my fishing knife. This is the second time this has happened. I can polish it off with some flitz, but I didn't think it would rust this easily. @Surfingringo leaves his in the salt, and he got a pin head spot after like a year. Mine didn't even sit in it. It was just used to cut some squid, then rinsed in the salt water. This is more than a pin head. I used Flitz and a brush to remove it, well except one pin head part that needs to extra attention.





    This doesn't seem normal to me. My Spydiechef has never shown a spot and I use it in the same conditions, and for food prep when camping.
    DavidZ and Kreyzhorse like this.
  2. yablanowitz


    Apr 14, 2006
    Without seeing it in person with the rust in place there is no way for me or anyone else to tell what is actually going on. At a guess, I'd say there may have been other steel imbedded in the surface during grinding, and that other steel is rusting.
  3. neffarious


    Jun 23, 2012
    That's what I'm hoping at this point. I didn't want to leave it on there for inspection because I didn't want the staining to become permanent. I'm curious if anyone else has seen this behavior.
  4. Mo2


    Apr 8, 2016
    its possible they changed the heat treatment for the spydiechef based on feedback from the mule to reduce the problem you are seeing. or what the post above mentioned. I have no idea for sure. it could have just been surface rust that wipes away with soap and water and a brush. it still has some amount of carbon in it, though very small amount. its still classified as a stain less steel, so it will stain less than carbon steel for example.

    edit: never mind this was rwl34
    I do recall an older thread a year ago that had a similar issue with rust on this mule under the scales that was used full time in the kitchen.
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2018
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  5. neffarious


    Jun 23, 2012
    One part that I just noticed and struck me as odd is in the second to last picture, where the rust is on the edge. I've sharpened this knife a few times now, so I'm doubtful it's from tooling equipment, now that I think of it.
  6. DJC72

    DJC72 Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 1, 2014
    There has to be something else going on here, please keep us update. I was considering purchasing a Lc200n mule.
  7. kniferbro


    Jan 22, 2011
    Very interesting.The heat treatment factor seems most plausible to me. Will be watching this thread.
  8. yablanowitz


    Apr 14, 2006
    You never sharpen anything else on the same equipment?
  9. NJBillK

    NJBillK Custom Leather and Fixed Blade modifications.

    Mar 27, 2014
  10. NJBillK

    NJBillK Custom Leather and Fixed Blade modifications.

    Mar 27, 2014
    Was this knife stored amongst carbon steel fish hooks, leaders, or other tools?
  11. tazkristi

    tazkristi Spyderco Moderator Moderator

    Apr 20, 2005
    @neffarious - I'm sorry for your disappointment and surprised to see this. I just double checked with our Warranty & Repair department and we've not seen an LC200N Mule do what yours has done. I'd definitely recommend that you send it in for evaluation. The MT25 is still available so worst case scenario we could easily replace it for you. I would suggest that you remove your (gorgeous) handles prior to sending it in and please be sure to include your complete contact information as well as any other details you can provide about how you used the knife, how it was stored, etc.. You can even mention this thread. You'll find all of the information that you need here, You'll be in great hands with our crew.

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  12. Kreyzhorse


    Jan 15, 2013
    ^ Doesn't get any better than this ^.
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  13. Surfingringo

    Surfingringo Gold Member Gold Member

    May 25, 2013
    Hey Nefarious, those are definitely some bizarre and unexpected results for lc200n. I have at least a half dozen knives in that steel and all of them have spent MONTHS on my kayak. They get put in the sheath wet and salty and bloody every day and never get a freshwater rinse. Aside from that one pinhead sized spot I saw on my mule (which was very odd in itself), I have never seen even the slightest bit of rust on lc200n. That you are seeing it from the use you described is VERY odd. I hope you will send that knife to Spyderco because I, for one, would be very interested to hear what is going on with that. That steel should definitely not be doing that. Could be residue like yablanowitz suggested but I would like to hear what Spyderco finds.
  14. Sal Glesser

    Sal Glesser Moderator Moderator

    Dec 27, 1998
    Hi Neffarious,

    We really need to get that piece into our lab. I'll Have Charlynn contact you on getting it back. If you do send it in, Please send it to me.


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  15. neffarious


    Jun 23, 2012
    Hi everyone! It was a very busy day at work. I just got home to see all this and I want to respond to everyone.

    I do but I also use a #8000 king stone on it, and the same results did not happen to my SpydieChef

    No, it was on the cutting board (wood) with squid or shrimp, in the salt water or in the kydex sheath. It never contacted any other metal. The sheath's hardware is not rusted, and no where did the knife contact it. It's an Azwelke FWIW. :)


    I sent you all my information via Conversation including name, number and email.


    Thank you very much, I really appreciate it. This is my absolute favorite steel, based on my SpydieChef, and I have the Native and Carribean on pre-order. We spend a lot of time in the salt. Thank you very much for taking a look at this for me.

    I've also not gone any further with the removal of the stains.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2018
    DavidZ likes this.
  16. neffarious


    Jun 23, 2012
    Off with the handles:

    Not pretty :(





    My poor scales:


    I took a brush and oxy clean and a straight edge and get 99% of it of the scale. Any thoughts on removing the little bit of the rest on the scales? I left the Mule as is to send to @Sal Glesser. I really was shocked how bad it was under the scale.

    Here is the hardware (this is just standard Halpern Titanium hardware):

  17. neffarious


    Jun 23, 2012
    I read all your information on this steel trying to discern if you had seen anything even close to this, since you are more or less the bar for salt water knife use. Once I determined this was a one off, I figured I would post here for opinions. What I received as even better, not that i was surprised. Spyderco always takes care of business. I am really not sure what to think after I removed the scales. I am very curious to see what Sal and company say.
  18. SpyderPhreak

    SpyderPhreak Rocketman for hire Platinum Member

    Apr 13, 2004
    Kind of baffling. :confused: I picked up a LC200N mule at the factory store a few months back, fully intending to use as a tackle box knife with some G10 scales. I may hold off on that until results from this come in. Odd indeed.
  19. Yonose


    Jul 10, 2017
    Did the squid have any “alien” type features, such as claws and an oddly shaped head?
  20. uxo2

    uxo2 Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 3, 2013
    In to see what happened.

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