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Spyderco Starmate Revisited


Gold Member
Oct 14, 1998
Just got a combo edge Starmate after handling a plain one a few months ago. At the time I wanted a more recessed liner and I still think it wouldn't hurt on this model. On further examination, here are the
good and points of this folder IMO.

The Good
A 440V spearpoint blade with decent belly and thickness not as pointy as the Military.
Smooth action but more of a "pop" than a click.
The G-10 has more traction than the G-10 Police model.
Feels good wearing it in the waistband and in saber or reverse grip.

The Bad
The filework and thumbrest aren't pronounced enough to give the thumb resistance
The clip isn't tight enough for pocket carry, at least on this model
The handle isn't as ergonomically comfortable toward the rear as I like, especially while wearing gloves.

Bluntly, love the blade, I'd like the handle to be more ergonomic. Interestingly, in closing the knife there is no "click" feel like in other liner locks. I actually kept checking to see if the knife really closed. I think this is for the 440V addict, a good everyday knife for someone who wants a piece a bit longer than the Native or Gunting but doesn't or can't carry a Military or Chinook.
I still think the Military still outclasses it, unless they come up with a newer handle with more pronounced finger grooves.

I have the Military, do you think it is worth getting the Starmate as well?


"To strive to seek to find and not to yield"
Ranger motto
General, I had the plain edge Military and it was a chainsaw when it came to an hour of nonstop carpet cutting. I like the hardness of 440V and the smoother action and large hole of the Military. The Military instantly won me over, the Starmate is growing on me.
I'd say Military for the days of real hard work, Starmate for everyday carry and cutting.

[This message has been edited by Smoke (edited 11-07-2000).]
Smoke - I agree with many of your points. The Starmate is my daily carry more than any of my other knives. I had Drew Gleason (Corduroy) modify mine to add five additional thumb serrations on the "hump" for extra traction. He also cut out the liner and handle on the back side of the handle to match the finger groove on the front scale. The liner is slightly recessed below the handle now, and has very nice filework on the liner to aid in unlocking the liner lock. With the matching finger cuttout on the scales, it's also much easier to open with my left hand. It's soooo much more comfortable now. Here's a few pics from Drew's PhotoPoint page to show you what I'm talking about:

Also, my ball detent is super strong - much stronger than any other liner lock I've ever had. At first it bothered me, but I've grown fond of the secureness of it.

I think Spyderco should adopt these same modifications. They make a world of difference to the Starmate.

My Custom Knife Collection

Member NCCKG , SCAK, and AKTI

Deo Vindice
General, try the wegner it beats them both.

I recently acquired 2 starmates- 1 plain and 1 serrated. I can see the starmate becoming one of my favorite "in the pocket" knives. For a long time I have been using serrated blade pocket knives almost exclusively. The plain edge starmate has forced me to re-evaluate, for it has an outstanding edge. I do agree with senator that there are some points on the starmate that must be attended to get the most out of the design, but the overall package is excellent.

A couple of time ago we have discussed Starmate modifications here. Yes, it would be closely-near-the-ideal tactical folder with these modifications! Unfortunately I'm too cheap blade smith to perform these modifications by myself and I do not know anyone here (in Poland) whom I could trust he will do his job properly and will not screw up my favorite knife.

But even in original form Starmate is very nice knife, one of my very favorite tactical folders.
Definitely worth to have!
Originally posted by Razor:
General, try the wegner it beats them both.

It sure does. The Military and the Starmate are excellent knives but neither can really compare to the excellent ergonomics of the Wegner.

A Wegner with VG-10 steel, a slightly enlarged hole, and an eccentric pivot would be the bomb.

Dennis Bible
A Wegner with VG-10 steel, a slightly enlarged hole, and an eccentric pivot would be the bomb.

The fact that the Wegner lacks those features is why the Starmate rides in the pocket every day instead of the Wegner...

My Custom Knife Collection

Member NCCKG , SCAK, and AKTI

Deo Vindice
I had the same problem with my clip being a little loose also. I removed the three screws, put the clip in a vice and bent it slightly in. I put it back on with a little locktite, and the clip was just perfect