Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Spyderco Salt

The Pacific Salt and Aqua Salt

Both knives sheated in Mike Sastre's neck sheath and Spyderco's new molded sheath


Me and my Salt during a jigging trip in '07



I've been a long-time fan of Spyderco knives.As a matter of fact, I became a Spyderholic and in 2000, I made my maiden pilgrimage to Spyderland. There, I
met Poppa Spyder Sal Glesser who founded the company with his wife Gail and family including Joyce Laithuri,
who was then in charge of international marketing. Joyce showed me around the little town of Golden and gave me a tour of Spyderco's factory. I have never
forgotten their generosity and for a good five years, I carried plenty of their product reviews in my weekly knife
column which was published in The Malay Mail.What I liked about Spyderco was its simplicity and effort to innovate. They were a young company with many
firsts and Sal's story had inspired me.When I asked him what kept him going, he told me: "I just wanted to do things..." The desire to innovate and
invent pushed Spyderco way ahead of many knife manufacturers who stayed in their traditional way of business
practise. Encouraged by the late Al Mar, Sal took his manufacturing to Japan in the early 80s. Now, many of Spyderco's
early knives became highly sought-after collector items.After cycling through countless of models, I am happily settled with their Salt series knives. One particular model
was the Pacific Salt. This knife is similar to Spyderco's flagship model Endura, but has a different blade geometry. Its 3.5" length
made it an ideal working edged tool and what made it appealing, is the H-1 steel.The Japanese has been using this blend of metal which is corrosion free. True to its quality, I put it through some
tests during my offshore trips.After preparing bait and cutting squid, I washed it with seawater. Not a speck of rust. If you use stainless steel,
the blade will corrode especially its naked edge.The Pacific Salt was spalshed with seawater, washed, thrashed and abused. It held on. And contrary to some
expert's opinion on its poor edge retention, I'd say the H-1 held up pretty well.What I want to add is the fact that the same guy who said this used his knife to cut onions and chillies in the
jungle. I used my offshore and cycled it through a dozen squid-jigging trips. No rust.Recently, after much consideration, I acquired the new Aqua Salt, a fixed blade knife with the same steel
material for my outings.I love the way Spyderco makes their small knives and the Aqua Salt fits my purpose. It will be put to test in my
offshore outing soon.
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