Of Low-Rider Clips and a Spyderhawk

Nov 16, 2002
It wasn't too long ago that I begged Steve Rice to put some left-handed low-rider clips on a couple of my favorite folding pocketknives so I could more comfortably and discretely enjoy their carriage in my left front pocket. He said it'd be no problem, so the knives and the check went to Oklahoma and he did some hard and great work and sent them back.


Pictured above (from top to bottom) are a Spyderco Atlantic Salt, Spyderco Spyderhawk, and Kershaw Junkyard Dog II.

Here are some close-ups on his handiwork:


Sorry Tim, but STR's low-rider is more at home on this production version of your excellent design. Well, for lefties like me, at least.


On the Spyderhawk's Endura-esque handle.


Pacifying the Atlantic.

Steve had a challenge securely fastening titanium clips to the FRN scales and you can see part of his solution here:


Now these low-rider clips give these knives comfortable, deep carry and feel great in hand with the clip, but they're not completely hidden. That's okay because a tiny hint of yellow or grey doesn't scream "Won't everyone nearby please admire my pocketknife" as much as nearly an inch of handle.
And now onto the Spyderhawk mini-review!

Got it when it first came out because I love hawkbills in general and Spyderco hawkbills in particular. Got the plain-edged version because, well, plain-edge works for me. Started carrying it after STR put the low-rider clip on it and found that the stock edge, sharp as it was, was too thick for my simple uses (cutting plastic and cardboard.

When thinning out my Kershaw Shallot, I decided to thin out the Spyderhawk as well. H1 is about as opposite from S110V as an iron alloy can be. I doubt it'd look sexy with a bead blast and, well, it instantly took a shiny and sharp edge with the belt sander.

For the past two weeks, my Spyderhawk has been doing goofy stuff like reducing boxes and cutting plastic banding and held its edge for a longer-than-expected time. And then it went bone dull. Figured hitting it with the sander and leather belt with a hint of Flitz would bring it right back. It shined the sides of the bone dull knife. Broke out my trusty Spyderco Doublestuff ceramic pockethone and the Spyderhawk quickly took a hair-popping edge.

The H1 alloy reminds me of the 12C27M steel in my Mora chef knife: it holds a very sharp edge for longer than expected at that level of sharpness and then instantly gets ridiculous dull with no warning. Also similar is they both sharpen and resharpen to a polished edge with ease.

Didn't use the Spyderhawk on yardwork like the Superhawk or S110V Shallot because I think its lack of serrations and wear-resistance is a negative in rocky soil (though the Atlantic Salt, with its serrations, is an excellect rootcutter), but, like all hawkbills, it's a great urban/indoors EDC.

Here are some pics showing the amount of thinning needed to make this knife very lively. Just a few minutes on a belt sander (or much longer with a file or benchstone) and it's good to go.



i just got a JYD II today and i must say yer lowrider clip is sexxxxaaaaaay.....hmmmm now to contact someone in OK....
Used the Superhawk for some root cutting in the garden and for cutting pipecovers yesterday (oh no! Not soft, non-abrasive foam?! :eek:). I like blades that are either much thinner or just even serrated for cutting out roots, but this knife is proving nice for my general EDC tasks.
And now the Spyderhawk has tasted yardwork.

We used the Spyderhawk and a Cold Steel Vaquero Grande to cut weeds out of a flower bed this morning until heat exhaustion took over. Even with the plain edge and low wear-resistance, the Spyderhawk held its own as a rootcutter. The serrations and longer blade of the Vaquero Grande made it a better rootcutter, but both knives did awesome. Afterwords, when it was time to cut that black fabric we hope in vain will prevent weeds, both knives sucked. Luckily, the blades on the Vic Supertinker were still sharp. But for cutting things that will instantly dull a knife, both the Spyderhawk and Vaquero Grande were just pure awesome. So was their unlined FRN.

Here are some pics taken several hours later:


Here it sits on a sharpening stone holder ironically waiting to be resharpened with a handheld hone.



So it got some mud and scratches. Sprayed it and the Vaquero Grande out with Ballistol to loosen the caked on and hidden crud.

Here's a brief cameo from the Vaquero Grande:



So the plain-edged Spyderhawk isn't as aggressive as the Vaquero Grande or serrated Spyderco Tasman Salt or Atlantic Salt, but it's still a very good folder for yardwork as well as indoors EDC chores.

7-31-10 edited to add:

The DMT Diafold paddle was taking to long, so a trip through the belt sander made everything right again for the Spyderhawk and a Lansky Cold Steel-specific ceramic sharpened the Vaquero Grande's serrations and a DMT D8XX benchstone and some 3M lapping film fixed its tip.
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