Anyone serious about prepping should have at least one of the best Spyderco knifes because they cut incredibly well, are comfortable to use, and the quality to price ratio make them great value.
With a serrated edge for quicker cutting, a handle clip for easy carry at the top of the pocket, and a hole in the blade for opening with one hand, Spyderco set the standard of the best modern folding knife and are a fantastic choice.
So in this buyers guide you'll uncover the 5 best Spyderco knives available for different needs and budgets.
That led me to narrow it down to 5 choices and list the Spyderco knife below as my top pick...
First Here's Our Top Spyderco Knife Picks...
OUR TOP PICK
In this knife, Spyderco have taken their legendary Military Model and made it into a much more compact and pocket-friendly knife.
The blade is made with CPM S30V stainless steel.
It has excellent edge retention, resists rust effortlessly and has vanadium carbides to make it really tough.
The plain edge version has a drop point blade shape, which gives it a lowered control point, and makes it a good hunting knife.
It has a full-flat grind, meaning it’s thickest at the spine for strength, but then it tapers down into a relatively thin edge for superior slicing.
This is because it makes it easier to avoid accidentally nicking internal organs and ruining the meat.
Moreover, it also features a large "belly" area that’s perfect for slicing.
Although when fully opened it measures a decent 8.24 inches in length, when folded it measures just 4.82 inches. And it weighs only 0.14 kg.
It uses Spydrco’s own patented compression lock mechanism, which is very secure.
The handle material is durable fibreglass, and it’s a really ergonomic design, that solves the issue of uncomfortable angles when in the closed position.
Of course, it also has the trademark round hole for one-handed opening, and a repositionable metal pocket clip.
You can either buy it with a plain edge, or you can get it with Spyderco’s trademark SpyderEdge, which is serrated for more aggressive cutting. Each is priced the same as the other.
It’s available with different colored handles.
The best one for hunting would be the one with the camo handle (obvs) with the black blade, as this would prevent any reflection catching the eye of intended prey.
This is one of Spyderco’s more popular knives, and a best seller with online retailers.
Customers typically describe it as the “Goldilocks” of EDC knives, and you know, we think they might just be right (see also: 3 Best Gravity Knives).
It’s not too heavy or too light, too big or too little, and the handle is neither too rough or too smooth.
What really makes this one stand out is just how lightweight it is compared to most other folding knives. At just 2.4oz or 68 grams, you could easily forget you’re carrying it.
This lighter weight is made possible by use of dual skeletonized stainless steel liners within the handle, which strengthen the knife without adding any unnecessary weight.
The blade itself is VG10 stainless steel, one that takes a very sharp edge and holds it a long time, and you can very easily make it razor sharp.
It has a plain edge and a full-flat grind, meaning it’s thickest at the spine for strength, but then it tapers down into a relatively thin edge for superior slicing.
And it’s easier to open one-handed than many other Spyderco knives because the trademark round hole is larger, at 13mm wide.
We also love the handle, in addition to being ergonomic, it’s also very slip resistant, thanks to the bi-directional texturing.
Very important when you’re cutting. It’s a fiberglass-reinforced nylon handle, which helps explain why this model is so affordable.
The Delica 4 also has a very sturdy and reliable back lock mechanism. And it also has the trademark metal clip.
You can choose from 8 different blade colors. We’re quite partial to the Zome Green one.
Overall, it makes for a great every day carry.
- Excellent price so you get great value for money here.
- Extremely lightweight meaning it won't take up much weight in your gear.
- Isn’t available with Spyderco’s trademark SpyderEdge so if that's important to you then avoid this particular model.
This is another knife that has had phenomenal feedback from customers.
Sometimes you need to cut through something that’s harder on the outside, and that’s where serrated edges come in.
And when it comes to knives with serrated edges, the Atlantic Salt is Spyderco’s best.
The Atlantic Salt has the SpyderEdge two-step serration pattern, with one large, followed by two small serrations.
This way, the cutting edge’s surface area is increased by up to a whopping 24%.
But what makes it really different from the rest is the use of nitrogen in the blade.
It uses H1 steel which is basically the ultimate in corrosion resistance and essentially does not rust - the epitome of true stainless steel in fact.
We also love that it has a hollow grind. The advantage of this is that the cutting edge is incredibly thin, like a razor in fact.
The ergonomic handle is made of Fiberglass Reinforced Nylon, which makes it simultaneously lightweight and high-strength.
The Atlantic Salt also has a very sturdy and reliable back lock mechanism. And it also has the trademark metal clip.
It only weighs about 8 grams, and folds up very compactly with a closed length of just under 5 inches.
The blade itself is still a decent size though, at 3.68 inches.
The main issue with serrated blades is that the characteristics that keep them sharper also make them more difficult to resharpen.
It may not be Spyderco’s most affordable folding knife, but it certainly isn’t amongst their more expensive ranges.
- Mid-priced for a solid knife that punches above it's weight.
- Ultimate in corrosion resistance to stop rusting and damage.
- Increased surface area of cutting edge so you can cut deeper and easier.
- Only available in 2 colors, black and yellow so if you like to keep your gear all on colour and it's neither of those it's no use.
- The edge retention is not the best.
- Difficult to sharpen which means over time it'll be less effective.
The Spyderco Tenacious is also a huge bestseller with online retailers.
And if you can’t decide whether to go for a plain edge or a serrated edge, then this beauty offers the best of both worlds, since it’s available with a combination edge.
At this price point, we weren’t expecting too much in terms of quality and performance, but we were very pleasantly surprised.
It has a superior steel blade, using 8Cr13MoV stainless steel, and Spyderco have really mastered the heat treatment process to bring out the best of this steel.
And it’s ground flat from the spine right to the very edge, which means the blade is evenly tapered, rather than curving in any way.
It features Spyderco’s G-10 handle, which is ergonomically milled for grip, and your hands shouldn’t tire too much, even if you have to do quite a lot of cutting. Hence the title “tenacious”.
The handle is rigid and strong without being too heavy or bulky.
And it’s slip-proof, which is exactly what you’re looking for in a knife handle.
The trademark round hole in the blade is oversized in this model, making it far easier to open one-handed.
The blade locks nicely into place when folded with a simple liner lock, one of the more common locking mechanisms in Spyderco’s range.
The blade is less than 8 inches when open, and the blade itself is a nice 3.39 inches, so it’s quite compact and pocket friendly.
And we love how the metal clip can be repositioned in a number of different ways, so it can be adapted for the left-handed, or you can have it tip up or tip down.
The handle is only available in black, but for the blade itself you can choose from steel or black, which is non reflective.
In addition to being available with a combination edge, you could also opt for one with a plain edge or the iconic Spyderedge.
Amazon occasionally has really good deals on this blade. Worth a look.
That said it’s great value for money, even if you don’t manage to catch it on offer.
- Made with prolonged fatigue-free cutting in mind so you can use it for long periods of time without you or the knife getting tired.
- Repositionable metal clip so you can change it to suit your preferences.
- Serrated edges or partly serrated edges are harder to sharpen
This is another highly rated Spyderco knife.
What we love about this one is the shape of the knife, described as Hawkbill.
This particular shape, together with the hollow grind, makes it great for piercing various items before you start cutting them.
It features the legendary SpyderEdge, which features a two-step serration pattern, with one large, followed by two small serrations.
This way, the cutting edge’s surface area is increased by up to a whopping 24%. This baby can really cut!
It’s great for cutting rope, netting, cord, and webbing.
The blade is made of VG10 stainless steel, one that takes a very sharp edge and holds it a long time, and you can make it even sharper.
The handle is Satin Finished Solid Stainless Steel, good, solid and sturdy.
Of course on the flip side, that also means it’s a little heavier than other folding knives.
The Harpy also has a very sturdy and reliable back lock mechanism.
And it also has the trademark metal clip. Not to mention the round hole in the blade for easy one-handed opening.
The overall length when fully opened is rather short at 6.63 inches, making it particularly small and compact.
The blade itself is 2.75 inches, which doesn’t sound like much, but we can assure you isn’t too short.
And then when it’s folded it measures just 3.88 inches.
- Great for piercing before cutting.
- VG10 stainless steel which is strong and durable.
- Stainless steel handle which again is durable and strong.
- Very compact so doesn't take up much space or weight in your gear.
- Serrated edges are harder to sharpen.
Best Spyderco Knife Buying Guide
Why get a Spyderco Knife?
As well as sharp, stylish, and durable. They’re typically made right here in the good old US of A. And, since their early conception they have only improved.
And as we mentioned in our introduction earlier, Spyderco folding knives feature a hole in the blade, which makes it easy to unfold the knife with just one hand.
And they always feature a metal clip, to help attach the knife to your person. More often than not, these metal clips are repositionable too.
But that’s not all Spyderco has placed a lifetime warranty on all of their knives. AND they will also sharpen them for you for free. How great is that!
Type of Blade Steel
All steels are not created equal.
You’ve got carbon steel, which is great where toughness and durability are important. They are relatively easy to sharpen, and are frequently used in survival knives.
And stainless steel is another popular category. It’s basically carbon steel with added chromium to help it to resist corrosion. It’s the most popular steel for EDC knives.
As to which type of steel is best, it rather depends on what it’s being used for. They all have their various pros and cons.
One thing to consider is what edge you want your knife to have.
Some Spyderco knives are only available with a plain edge, or with the SpyderEdge, which is serrated.
Or you can invest in a combination edge which offers the best of both worlds.
What knife edge you need depends what it is you’re going to be cutting. A plain edge on a blade is great for most everyday tasks, but a serrated edge is better for cutting through rope or foliage.
We think it’s important that your folding knife has a good locking system, otherwise you could end up unwittingly tearing a hole in your jeans or combat trousers.
You may have noticed, if you’ve been checking, that Spyderco folding knives, despite all being from the same brand, can vary quite considerably in price.
We’re not going to tell you how much to spend, that’s down to you. But what we will say is that all Spyderco knives are good value for money, in some cases excellent value for money.
In fact we would argue that there may even be reason to buy several Spyderco knives, each for different functions.
If you’re looking for a good budget Spyderco knife, then the most affordable one that made our top 5 picks was the Spyderco Tenacious Value Folding Knife.
Spyderco does offer more affordable ones than this, but in our view they aren’t quite as good.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I go to find out more about Spyderco knives?
Spyderco have their very own forum
And from there you can ask any question you like about Spyderco knives (and some more slightly off topic matters), and get several people’s opinions.
What accessories do I need?
You can also buy blade sharpening kits, made by Spyderco themselves.
Should I go with Benchmade, or Spyderco?
Both brands can produce some really great nice knives, but overall Spyderco is definitely more affordable.
So, if you’re prepping on a budget, or want to get several different folding knives, then Spyderco is the way to go.
What is the best Spyderco knife for Every Day Carry (EDC)?
For an every day carry, we would have to recommend our number 2 pick, the Spyderco Delica 4.
It’s kinda the Goldilocks of folding knives and one of the better knives.
That said, our number 4 pick, the Spyderco Tenacious Value Folding Knife, might also be a good choice, because it’s available with a combination edge, so could be used in more instances.
I am an independent safety and survival expert and consultant. I have over 15+ years of experience working with corporations and individuals to help identify, remediate and prepare for threats and and disasters. I help clients understand risks and blog about my thoughts and techniques at DisasterShelters.net