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Spydiechef!

Discussion in 'Knife Reviews & Testing' started by miso2, Nov 23, 2016.

  1. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    Hi all,


    I’ve finally got the Marcin Slysz Spydiechef! This was my putative grail knife.

    Spec:
    Blade length, 3.32”
    Blade thickness, 0.118” (0.105” in my measurement!!)
    Overall length, 7.78”
    Weight, 3.8 oz (mine was right on)
    Steel, LC200N (HRc???)​
    More details (https://www.spyderco.com/catalog/details.php?product=1004)


    [​IMG]



    This is a Whamcliffe blade frame lock knife which provides a very solid feel. The construction is superb with good hardware. Great fit and finish, expected from Taichung. I like the design of a spyder hole with no hump. If I have to complain about the design, I would say make the access to the hole from the lock side better for middle finger flicking and add jimping on the back of the blade near the handle, like the Slysz Bowie…… Otherwise, this is a perfect knife for me!

    The ergonomics of the handle is nice for my medium-sized hand.


    [​IMG]



    Mine came with late lockup about 65% (I guess this is typical of Marcin Slysz Design) and with a little bit of lock stick. It is not to the level of annoyance, though. I can disengage the lock with one hand. The operation makes a feeling somewhat similar to that of Umnumzaan (my review), which is nice.


    [​IMG]



    The blade is flat ground deeply. The thickness behind the edge is about 0.015” (at 18 DPS). This is the best blade grind I have seen from Spyderco thus far. The edge bevel is still narrow with a 15 DPS edge profile. Comparison with PM2 also sharpened to 15 DPS.


    [​IMG]



    It was my first time to sharpen LC200N. I don’t know the hardness of the steel on this knife. But it was easy to sharpen with Edge Pro and silicone carbide stones. The Wharncliffe shape also makes it easier. And the edge…… It took a very very aggressive edge. I have never achieved this kind of edge on S35VN, ZDP-189, and S110V (but maybe on M390). This one sunk down into a piece of toilet paper just by its own weight. Wow…… Of course it can tree-top cut hair with no sliding. I think it is similar to a carbon steel on one of my kitchen knives.

    The blade geometry would make this knife excel in slicing. I will compare it with Boker Exskelibur I and PM2 in light slicing tasks in the near future. I feel that Spydiechef is a good compromise of both, a good slicer yet robust enough.


    [​IMG]



    I am not sure about the edge retention of this steel yet, but found a nice Youtube video of Spydiechef testing. It is impressive!

    [Youtube]HkFs1jxmRxw[/Youtube]



    I think this is the closest to my dream knife so far, a thin blade stock thinly ground slicer with a Wharncliffe-like (?) shape, Ti frame lock and a good blade steel. Only if this is a front flipper…… This will be my near grail knife until I get my hands on to a MacWasil front flipper.




    Miso
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
  2. Herlock

    Herlock Gold Member Gold Member

    664
    May 13, 2015
    Hi! Very nice review and beautiful knife :thumbup:. I’m also eyeing this hard and keenly reading/watching through available information. I’m impressed by her slicing capability you’re describing :eek:! Likely I will get one of those eventually. Enjoy her in good health! Take care.
     
  3. Bugs57

    Bugs57 Gold Member Gold Member

    418
    Jul 3, 2016
    Nice review. I too have been sitting on the fence regarding purchasing one. For me the LC200N corrosion resistance is the big draw. I currently use a Pac Salt H1 steel knife for fishing duties in SW FL. I love the rust proof H1 but the edge retention is just so..so. When fishing I use it to cut bait, line, etc., gut and bleed fish. Your hands get wet, slimey and slick. The FRN handle on the PAC1 offers a nice non slip grip. I'm not sure the Ti handle of the Chef would be so forgiving in that environment. In the kitchen no problem but on my boat, hmmm. The other issue with the Chef is the phosphor bronze washers; how will they hold up in a corrosive environment? The PAC just gets swished around in the ocean to clean off the blood and guts. I'd love to get my hands on that blade in an FRN setup similar to the PAC. I made this comment on the Spyderco forum and Sal commented that they were going to be using this steel in different handle materials and configurations. I may have to grab a Chef for the kitchen (though I prefer my fixed blades here) and wait to see what else Spyderco offers up in this steel.
     
  4. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014

    Thanks! I will test it in slicing tasks soon over the weekend and post the results.


    Miso
     
  5. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014

    LC200N does have quite good edge retention so far, and my feeling is that it is comparable to S30V. Regarding corrosion resistance of hardware, quick Wikipedia search provided info that phosphor bronze is highly corrosion resistant and have been used as ship's propellers and dental bridges. But I am not sure about the real-life results in marine environments.

    The stone washed (?) Ti handle gets bit slippery when wet like my Sebenza and other Ti handle knives. I am thinking of making grooves like Umnumzaan with a file at some point. My hope is that this knife becomes a popular one in Spydeco line, and there will be service vendors offering custom scales for it.


    Miso
     
  6. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    More pics!

    I disassembled my Spydiechef couple of times. Very simple construction.

    [​IMG]


    A group photo with my other Full-Ti frame lock knives.

    [​IMG]

    The scale feels very similar to that of Sebenza in terms of texture and look.


    [​IMG]

    Thinnest to thickest from left (Boker Exskelibur I, Spydiechef, small Sebenza, Southard Tolk, and Umnumzaan).


    [​IMG]



    Miso
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2016
  7. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    Spydiechef cutting a piece of toilet paper just by its own weight.


    [Youtube]Vwhqw8kEXlY[/Youtube]


    Miso
     
  8. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    It was pretty easy to put a hair whittling edge on LC200N. And it lasts pretty well.

    [Youtube]15BQGxtXXVE[/Youtube]


    Miso
     
  9. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    It's been about a week since I got the knife. It broke in and operates very well and smooth. I am planing to put teflon washers instead of phosphor bronze just to try it out.

    After repetitive application of sharpie, the lock stick is gone. Now lock disengaging is just easy and pleasant. The lock bar tension is on the stronger side, similar to CRK knives. But the sounds of lock engagement and of detent ball placement are much nicer.

    [Youtube]TWveTlThPGI[/Youtube]



    Anyway, I have tested Spydiechef in food prep a little bit today. I cut up a cucumber, which was dense and hard. I used four knives, Spydiechef, Boker Exskelibur I, PM2, and Umnumzaan for comparison.

    [​IMG]


    The thinnest Exskelibur cut it very nicely like a kitchen knife all the way through. The other thicker hollow ground knife, Umnumzaan, cut into the cucumber nicely, but broke it in the middle. FFG PM2 was the worst among four. It broke the vegie almost as soon as the blade entered it. Much thinner FFG knife, Spydiechef, worked a lot better than the previous two knives. But it did broke the cucumber before reaching the end. The thin-blade stock hollow ground Exskelibur was the champ in this competition, as expected.

    In terms of food prep performance, Spydiechef is not as good as Exskelibur not close to a kitchen knife at all. This makes Spydiechef not a primary choice in food prep, which was anticipated from the blade grind, despite its cooking board friendly design. I use Exskelibur a lot as a small kitchen knife lately with satisfaction. However, Exskelibur feels like a delicate knife. The similarly lightweight Spydiechef gives a very solid feel comparable to Umnumzaan or Sebenza even with the thin blade. And it can be used as a paring knife with a performance lot better than PM2 or Umnumzaan.

    With the thin blade, solid feel, lightweight, and the great steel, I decided to keep Spydiechef by my side and ditch the beloved Exskelibur I for now.


    Miso
     
  10. marcus52AR

    marcus52AR Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 22, 2014
    Nice review, it's a knife that's definitely on my radar being very happy with the the Slysz Bowie. Not sure if I need another ti framelock, but I know I want one.

    I like the thinness aspect. I find I'm more interested in slicey knives over the 4mm+ wedgy knives. Add the interesting steel and Taiwan quality at a good price point...

    I think I just sold myself a knife.
     
  11. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    I guess I don't need to convince you any more:) But I can say that the Taichung quality really shines on this one. I don't own the Bowie and thus cannot compare them. I can only verify that at this price point the fit and finish of Spydiechef are like a dream come true. Very very well done. LC200N sharpens up like XHP in my hand.


    Miso
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2016
  12. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    Some foodprep videos with Spydiechef and Boker Exskelibur I


    [Youtube]vgra_9_-wmA[/Youtube]



    Miso
     
  13. gmorel1916

    gmorel1916 Platinum Member Platinum Member

    631
    Sep 16, 2014
    Great thread [emoji1303] Been loving my Spydiechef as well!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  14. matt009au

    matt009au Gold Member Gold Member

    602
    Apr 23, 2009
    Great review mate, Slysz has hit a six with all of his spydy colabs. I wonder what he will do next.
     
  15. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    Hi guys,

    I just replaced the original phosphor bronze washers to teflon washers just to try out. The action became smoother. And they seem to be more forgiving to pivot tightening. I can tighten down the pivot pretty much, and the action is still buttery smooth. I like it and will keep them there.

    For those interested in doing the same, I use washers with the following dimensions: OD 0.393" (10 mm) x ID 0.177" (4.5 mm) x thickness 0.02" (0.5 mm).
    It seems that Spyderco Taichung factory uses metric washers, as my washers perfectly fit. I guess you can use US 3/16" (0.1875" or 4.76 mm) washers instead.

    This might interest those who are concerned with potential rust on phosphor bronze washers.


    Miso
     
  16. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    I should also add that teflon washers provide more consistent smooth action whether it is in a dry, moist, or wet condition. And I guess in principle it can work oil free.


    Miso
     
  17. Herlock

    Herlock Gold Member Gold Member

    664
    May 13, 2015
    Hi Miso2! Thanks for this info. I have a number of folders which blades run on Teflon washers and, a bit against mainstream thinking on the subject here :), I also can say they perform very good, even after several years of EDC. No doubt they can be a good choice also for the Spydiechef :thumbup:. Take care.
     
  18. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    Thanks, Herlock. I think teflon (PTFE) washers are pretty good in terms of action, although I am not sure about their durability and action in the long run. You comment that teflon washer-running knives you have are good standing after several years of use made me feel better.

    I will eventually try Nylatron (PA66), which is supposed to be more durable than teflon, if I can find them in the right size.


    P.S. Nylatron seems to absorb moisture (teflon does not) and therefore would not be suitable for Spydiechef.



    Miso
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2016
  19. Taike

    Taike

    67
    Sep 29, 2016
    As a newbie here, and coming from the kitchen knife world, I'm truely baffled. Why use a folding knife for home food prep? A dedicated kitchen knife, for me, is clearly the right tool for the job. There are plenty of amazing kitchen knives for home and professional use at low, medium and high price points. Given the high appreciation for the value of quality tools that is the foundation of this forum, I really don't get it. Please don't get me wrong, I am enjoying myself immensely discovering the world of folding/pocket knives. Hell, I went to my first knife show this weekend and walked away thinking about how I could justify a Rockstead. But to cut up a chicken, I drool over a honesuki, not a Spydiechef. I figure I must be missing something but am having a hard time figuring out what.
     
  20. miso2

    miso2 Basic Member Basic Member

    987
    Nov 19, 2014
    Hi Taike,


    Welcome to the forums!

    I totally agree that folding knives are not suitable tools in the kitchen. Below is the comparison of blade geometries among a few folding knives and a Japanese paring knife I own.

    [​IMG]



    Clearly, the Takamura paring knife has the superior blade for food prep, thinner and longer blade, and thinner edge. Spydiechef is thinner than most of folding knives but still too thick for the job (Boker Exskelibur I is very thin).

    For me, I use my folding knives in the kitchen just for fun and to increase the use. We cannot carry knives in Japan. Using a knife at work is also a bit risky, at least for my work place. So, I don't get to use my knives often here. That is why I try to use my knives in the kitchen, even though I know my Japanese chef knives are better for food prep.

    Another reason for me is that my chef knives are often dull because my wife uses them and uses them rough. She occasionally uses high hardness chef knives on a thin plastic cutting board and damages the edge (even after I beg her to use a wooden board). But she does not use my folding knives, and therefore they are always very very sharp. Sometimes this makes my folding knives more favorable than chef knives for certain tasks.



    Miso
     

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