Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Spyderco Delica: First Generation

          I've been a fan of the Spyderco Clip-it's since their inception over 20 years ago. I have owned many Spyderco's over the years, but the Endura and Delica remain my two favorite EDC choices & I primarily carry the Delica due to local legal requirements.
           The Delica pictured on the bottom is a first generation model # C11SBK. It's a rather rare and hard to find model that Spyderco only made one year(1995) and it's been my constant companion for 17 years. It has a black coated G2/Gin-1 blade and is fully serrated. I probably actually prefer partially-serrated or plain edges for EDC, but I don't mind fully serrated knives and the positives of this knife outweigh any negatives. Some will say a fully serrated blade will catch on clothing, but others disagree and it's probably pretty much a minor issue although serrations are harder to sharpen and offer less dexterity for delicate everyday tasks and push cuts.
      The first Gen Clip-its had a integrated frame molded plastic clip which I still prefer. Most people don't like them since it's not ambidextrous(most are for righties) and you can't switch sides or positions(choose tip up or tip down carry), but it works for me and my preferred carry method(I'm right-handed and only carry tip down).
             I've heard complaints about the plastic clips breaking, but mine have always been very sturdy and I've had more problems with the metal clips coming loose(they are screwed into the frame) or scratching anything I've leaned against of bumped into(i.e. car doors). Some of the very first molded clip models had a thin clip that was designed with an improper angle(towards the handle at the tip)) that made it prone to bend and/or break and I avoid them and only own models with the thicker/wider properly angled(straight/parallel but offset) clip.
              The G2/Gin 1 has always preformed well and never shown an ounce of rust or corrosion whereas I've had ATS clip-it's show both rust and pitting in the metal. The VG-10 used on newer models is very good as well and I own knives that have it and I've never had a problem with them either although Spyderco Customer Service has told me that the G2 might have a slight edge over the VG-10 from a pure rust/corrosion resistant standpoint. It may not hold an edge & perform as well as the newer "super-steels", but Ican accept that since I like the design so much more and carry it primarily as an emergency & self-defense knife, not as as box-cutter or work knife.The frame is pinned together, so their isn't any screws to work loose and it is not metal lined which might not be quite as durable, but less metal to possibly rust and a little lighter.