I received my new Drunken today and thought I would post my first impressions of it since this model is so new and there aren't even Youtube reviews up. I purchased the Drunken because the Spydiechief is one of my all-time favorite designs and I thought it would be my upscale, high-end version of it that I would EDC for most uses. The overall shapes of the knives are the same, but there are obvious differences in materials and finishes.
I'm going to copy Nick Shabazz's format a bit here and go through the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.
First the Good.
The production of this knife with its intricate milled contours, patterns, and shapes is superb; no flaws can be found. The knife is also remarkably light due to the milled and drilled scales. The blade is fairly thick out to the tip, yet is pretty thin behind the edge. It's not nearly as thin as the Spydiechef, but should still be a great slicer.
(A bird pooped on the knife a split second before I pressed the shutter release for this picture!)
There are two detractions in this category; the first is the anodized finish of the titanium clip and pivot screws; touch them with anything, and you leave black marks. This isn't really Spyderco's fault, it's the nature of anodized titanium, but it should be mentioned. From the factory, these parts were covered in black grime, and I had to thoroughly clean them. This is common with production knives, but at this price point, a little more care should have been taken during final QC to clean it up. Second, the grind on my example is pretty bad. One bevel is uneven, being fat and thin in various places and the edge is quite dull. I don't mind this in a $100 Sypderco as I reprofile and sharpen all of my knives when I receive them, but again, for a $600 MSRP knife, this is a misstep.
Finally, the Ugly:
The pocket clip design prevents the ability to carry this knife. This isn't just an "ugly," this is reason enough to recall this iteration of the Drunken and or issue replacement parts as soon as possible.
The fraying of the pocket in this picture was from five minutes of attempting to put the knife in my pocket and remove it. Of note: the pants I wear are a very thin BDU-style cargo variety; much thinner than blue jean material. I examined the pocket clip closely, and it appears to be manufactured exactly as designed, but the design doesn't allow enough clearance for material under the clip.
Even if I pull out on the clip when putting it into my pocket, there still isn't enough distance between the two surfaces for the pant material. But, the problems don't stop there. The upswept end of the clip is much too high and much too sharp. The thin titanium feels very sharp and is a painful hotpoint in your hand whether the knife is opened or closed and I wouldn't even want to attempt repeated cutting tasks.
Another issue with the clip that I've tried to photograph (seen below) is that the clip doesn't sit flat against the scale. This is because the attachment point is milled flat, on the same plane as the blade, but the scale is contoured. This results in just a very small portion of the clip contacting the pocket material which contributes to the difficulties encountered in my attempted use.
[Edit to add that I removed the pocket clip and took this picture of where it was touching the scale. As you can see, it has already worn away the anodization with less than a dozen attempts at putting it into my pocket.]
At this point, I'm not going to pile on with reasons why something like this slipped past QC, but I really think Spyderco needs to consider issuing a new pocket clip for this model. They were already going to face reduced sales because of the high price of the Drunken and this problem all but eliminates the ability to carry and use this knife without outright removing the clip. The other solution could be to mill the attachment point at the same angle as the scale/lock bar so it sits flat against the scale, but they still need to raise the clip and change the end of it because it is so darn uncomfortable.
TL: DR Version: (Title) Amazing knife that is ruined by its current pocket clip.
As it stands right now, this will be the first Spyderco I've ever returned out of the 40-50 I've purchased.