Popular Spyderco knives tend to fall short on edge/overall length ratio. That is, they pack less cutting edge in a relatively larger package. Some might say it's worth giving up some cutting edge for improved ergonomics, but I would argue that a good folder design maximizes both!
Here are 11 popular EDC folders of various sizes sorted by CUTTING EDGE to overall length ratio*
*From manufacturer's specs. Used the cutting edge when available, but some makers just give less accurate "blade length". Values are approximate
As you can see, common Spydercos tend to fall on the low end of Edge/OAL ratio. To put this in perspective, if you imagine an 8 inch OAL knife with the ratio of the ZT 450 (0.441) and another 8 inch knife with the ratio of the Delica (0.359), that's a difference of almost 2/3rds of an inch of cutting edge! That seems like a non-negligible amount. I'm not knocking Spydercos; I love the workmanship and materials of my Delica and carry it often. But I wonder if Spyderco will ever evolve their current design language to try something new?
So, I issue a challenge to Spyderco! Can they develop a knife, 6 - 7 inches overall, with an CUTTING EDGE/OAL ratio of 0.42 or more?
HARDMODE: add an Emerson wave opener
Would anyone else like to see this?
Note the Edge/Mass column. Some may doubt the value of this metric, since, unless you're an ultralight backpacker, an extra ounce or two doesn't make a difference to most people. But what this metric can tell you is how efficient the knife design is for its weight, IE how much cutting edge you get in exchange for carrying around that weight all day.
The Flash 1, with its complete lack of liners, is insanely efficient for its weight, at 1.72 mm of edge per gram! Whether or not it's worth forgoing the strength of liners altogether depends on the use case. The Dragonfly is also very efficient in this regard; if it had a higher Edge/OAL ratio, it might have been able to dethrone the Flash 1 in the weight efficiency department!