I have owned many Spydercos...have loved every one. I've owned three satin, brown Southards, and just received my first black. I really love the looks of that black. It's all personal opinion. The failure was obviously metal fatigue or bad heat-treat, whatever. Somewhere in the manufacture process. As usual, Spyderco will take care of you. My favorite company, by far, for any folder less than $400.