Spyderco Rescue

May 27, 2000
I am posting this because I couldn't find another Rescue review here. This weekend I put my rescue to a test of edge durability and rust resistance. Note that it is the old style with AUS 8 and a plastic clip. I had it on a boy scout camping trip and used it in a campsite improvement project. We built a dam to let debris settle out of water and used a PVC pipe to make the water accessible for gathering. Back to the point. It was used to cut 'rooty' mud from around a gravely stream bed, cut branches for supports, and once to cut the PVC. Much to my surprise, and delight, It didn't really even need to be resharpened afterwards. It was also left under water for several minuts by accident while I was preoccupied. It survived the weekend without rusting even though there wasn't a Tuff-cloth in sight. It was used by other scouts durring the construction and (ab)used for most of the weekend for almost everything. Although I dont know of a good way to test how sharp a serrated edge is, (shaving with it makes a mess
)it seems as sharp as new. The only noticible thing that happened was that the handle grooves have some dirt in them, and I wish I could take it apart to clean inside, but spraying WD-40 seems to have worked. BTW this in my 100th post!

"Dream as if you'll live forever, Live as if you'll die today"
-- James Dean

-Jesse Foust

[This message has been edited by scouter27 (edited 10-23-2000).]
The first folder I got was a new orange rescue. It was to be in my car all times - and there it has been.
But I've used it for various things... mostly cutting thick cardboard, and once I tried to cut some very strong and thick blastic. The edge is good and cuts probably everything. Cardboard is no match for the edge.
Notice how I say the edge, and not the blade. The problem is that the blade is too thick. Try cutting heavy cardboard, and you'll notice that once you get the knife into the cardboard, it gets stuck. The blade widens so much and the cardboard doesn't bend... It just get's stuck there. The edge cuts, but the knife doesn't move in the strong material (heavy cardboard can be strong). You end up using much more force to pull the knife through the material. The same happened with the strong plastic. I bend even less sideways. I could not finish the job with rescue... I finished it with my old convex ground leuku <img src="http://www.hut.fi/~hugo/knives/pienileuku_1024x768_p.jpg" align="right">(with much flatter edge nowadays of course). It was tuff for that also (I was using lots of force), but because the convex grind it went through the blastic smoother (read: better).

I'm not sure why they made the blade so thick. I mean it seems that with thinner blade the cutting performance would be much better. Of course it's designed for rescue purposes, so one might think that sometimes it has to act as crowbar and the blade can not bend - but even with thinner blade, I think the pivot area will break before the blade would bend. So to me, it seems that the thickness is overkill and just results in bad cutting performance.


... I've been meaning to write to Spyderco about this... as the same reason has been holding be back from Starmate... there too the thickness and short grind results a worse performance than what could have been...

[This message has been edited by Hugo (edited 10-24-2000).]
The Rescue I bought in the late 80's was my first Spyderco also. It is still with me and working fine. It has really impressed some of the people at work with the ease that it handles some of the odd cutting jobs that frustrate others around here.

It is not the fall that kills you. It is the realization that "yes, you did something that stupid."
Hugo, I think you're right, it is a matter of strength. However, I would argue that the folks at Spyderco probably have good reasons for the thickness of the Rescue. It is, after all, designed as an "emergency" type knife, and it is easy to see the blade being stressed in all sorts of unnatural directions while cutting a seatbelt or climbing harness. For the job it's designed for, the thickness is not a hindrance, but a help. The extra thickness at the point even acts as a safety feature.
Burke, that is exactly what I wrote up there. Except that I'm really wondering if the pivot area would break much earlier than the (even thinner) blade would start to bend or break. You are, after all, using a knife with both the blade and the handle, with potentially weak point in between. And if you are really pushing the blade sideways... you are actually pushing the handle.


[This message has been edited by Hugo (edited 10-25-2000).]
From my earlier post in Spyderco forum:

The Spyderco Rescue was a good idea, a Mariner done with light, brightly colored plastic. It didn't take me long to break the plastic pocket clip. I smoothed that off and carried it inside my pocket.

The serrated blade was capable of cutting a bundle of stranded automotive wire, such as you find running to the left door of a modern car. Pulling hard against the knife put pressure on the release. When it popped through the wire, the blade swung halfway shut from momentum. Fortunately, I was wearing firefighter's gloves.

Maybe it was my particular knife, but when pulling hard, the pressure caused the spring to raise a bit and the blade to come back a little. It never folded back, of course, and that alone did not unlock it, but it shook my confidence.

If I was doing it again, I'd pop the extra $$ for the Mariner. Same blade, more weight, more strength.