Thoughts on one month carry challenge

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The Meat man
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Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby The Meat man » Thu Sep 10, 2020 10:39 am

For the month of August, I wanted to do a one-knife carry challenge. I wanted to carry and use just one knife throughout the entire month. Having some difficulty in choosing which knife, I posted a poll and let you all decide for me. The Pacific Salt SE won.
Now I had already done an exclusive carry challenge with the Pac Salt SE, last year. It was that experience that really woke me up to the usefulness and utility of a fully serrated blade. So I knew that this would not be a difficult challenge for me.

As anticipated, I had no issues to speak of with the knife. I kept it sharp, using the Sharpmaker, preferring not to microbevel. My daily use is not very rigorous so the H-1 was acceptable.

However, as the month wore on I discovered something I had not really anticipated, not about the knife but about my own understanding about the nature of the challenge.
Back before I got into Spyderco, I carried a single knife - a Kershaw Chill - for about 8 or 9 years. During most of that time, I worked in construction, and I used that knife extensively. I carried it every day. It has traveled in my pocket from the Atlantic to the Pacific, from Canadian lakes to the Caribbean. It was in my pocket on our wedding day. With so many memories attached to it, that knife had, unknown to me at the time, become more than just a tool. It was a faithful and familiar companion.

Once I fell down the Spyderco rabbit hole, that connection was broken. Very soon I had more knives than I could possibly carry. A new steel, a new design - meant a new knife purchase. I joined the forum here and with that, all hope of recovery went out the window. It was, and still is, a lot of fun.

With that fun of new discovery, however, came a price - the lost connection with my knife as a familiar companion. With so many knives to carry and use it has become impossible to use any one knife exclusively enough to bring back that experience. Which is why I feel the urge sometimes to do these exclusive carry challenges - it's an attempt to bring back that lost connection.

Now the interesting thing is, I found that as I settle into one of these challenges, as I become more familiar with that one particular knife, my interest in the wider knife community wanes. I spend less time on the forums, get less excited about new releases, and my interest in knives in general diminishes.
It's as if a prerequisite to having that one-knife connection is a general disinterest in knives in general. Which seemed counter-intuitive to me at first, but upon reflection makes a lot of sense.

It was an unexpected dichotomy: to have one means I must give up the other. It seems that I can't have that one-knife connection again as long as I remain a knife afi. But I still want both.
First world problems? :o :D

Apologies for the rambling post. :rolleyes:
- Connor

"What is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?"

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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby prndltech » Thu Sep 10, 2020 11:07 am

The Meat man wrote:
Thu Sep 10, 2020 10:39 am
Now the interesting thing is, I found that as I settle into one of these challenges, as I become more familiar with that one particular knife, my interest in the wider knife community wanes. I spend less time on the forums, get less excited about new releases, and my interest in knives in general diminishes.
It's as if a prerequisite to having that one-knife connection is a general disinterest in knives in general. Which seemed counter-intuitive to me at first, but upon reflection makes a lot of sense.

It was an unexpected dichotomy: to have one means I must give up the other. It seems that I can't have that one-knife connection again as long as I remain a knife afi. But I still want both.
First world problems? :o :D

Apologies for the rambling post. :rolleyes:
I have a feeling WE aren’t the only one that has realized this. If I carry one knife for more than a week I start to feel that way about it, and I HAVE to stay away from the forums or else I start to think about another knife and out it goes.
- Shannon

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pantagana23
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby pantagana23 » Thu Sep 10, 2020 11:57 am

I must say, what you had with that Kershaw of yours, I've been searching for the past 15 years.

In the mean time, I have over 30 knives, from which each and every one was bought with the tought of "the last knife I'll ever buy".

I got more into Spyderco after Salt 1, as it was completely rustproof (I live and work by and on the sea) + the hole wasn't tearing my pants apart like other openers do, but hell, the steel was soft. Afterwards I bought 5 more, all with the similar idea.

And one was too large, the other one was too small, or not fitting my hand well enough.

From what I see now, the search will never end, as preferences "update" with each new blade.

One month challenge is not a problem, but we both know that you would wish that something the other knife has during carrying the one you choose :D

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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby James Y » Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:23 pm

Back in the 1980s until 1997, the ONLY knife I carried was a Victorinox Spartan SAK. I bonded with that one knife for at least 12 years, but at the same time, I only brought it out when I needed to use it. In other words, like most people who carried pocketknives back decades ago. And before I owned that Spartan, I had already used pocketknives by Schrade, Buck, Camillus, Ka-Bar, etc., since the 1970s. But the SAK was the one I bonded with the most. The fact that its larger cutting blade was only 2.5” or that it wasn’t a ‘super’ steel never impeded me.

I’m still EDCing the same Victorinox Executive SAK since 1999. And I always pair it up, with either another Spartan, or a Pioneer. So I have completely bonded with those knives. My Executive and one of those other two SAKs are always with me, no matter which one-hand knife I’m carrying.

As for Spyderco, over the years I have bonded with a few through long-term carry and use. I EDC’d my SE Pacific Salt for about 5 years straight. I’ve also bonded with Delicas through lots of carry time and use. Back in the early 2000s, I took a break from Spyderco and bonded with my first CRK Sebenza, and after that, a Benchmade axis TSEK for a couple years.

There are really only a few of my one-hand opening knives that get carried ‘all the time’, or long-term. Once I home in on something, I tend to stick with it for a good while, even if I buy others. I can see my SE Endela, or perhaps the new LC200N Pacific Salt, joining that ‘elite group.‘. :)

Jim
Last edited by James Y on Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:29 pm, edited 4 times in total.

ladybug93
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby ladybug93 » Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:24 pm

if all you've ever eaten is pb&j, it's easy to be content with it. once you've had a steak though, you realize how good it is and how many different cuts there are and all the other foods that you've missed out on. pb&j is still delicious and okay occasionally, but there's too much wonderful food to go back to that alone.

JD Spydo
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby JD Spydo » Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:30 pm

Well I sure don't mean to deviate from what you're attempting to prove to us. Because at face value it looks to be an interesting challenge to say the least. But I've gotten so used to carrying one PE blade and one full SE blade that I can't hardly get the desire to change anything. I have one underlying philosophy that I've learned to live by. "If It Isn't Broke, Then Don't Try To Fix It".

So what I'm saying is that my daily EDC regimen is doing me just fine. Now If I had to go with just one folder I could do it with my C-44 Dyad which has one PE and one SE blade. But other than that I really don't want to be at a disadvantage.

But if there is one blade that a guy could get by on and would meet all my cutting needs then I'm more than glad to listen.

If they ever made a combo edged version of the older TEMPERANCE 1 fixed blade model I could probably give that a try.

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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby vivi » Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:31 pm

I've had precisely the same experience with the same knife.

I've gone long stretches carrying the same one knife every day, or close to it. D2 Military, Police 3, DLC Para 2, Pacific Salt 1 & 2.

Before I tried the Siren I had expected to carry my Pacific Salt 2 every day this summer.

I notice during these phases I'm a lot less inclined to post photos to the What Are You Carrying thread because I don't think anyone wants to see the same knife over and over.
Carry rotation:

Pacific Salt 2 SE | Siren | Police 4 LW | Police 4 K390 | C95 Manix foliage green | Manix XL M4 DLC | Street Beat LW | Aqua Salt

carrot
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby carrot » Thu Sep 10, 2020 1:03 pm

I kinda fell into a carry challenge myself a couple years ago now. It was with the Dragonfly Salt, and it was just so easy to keep slipping into my pocket that after the whole summer had passed I realized that it was all I carried!

The summer after, it happened again when I bought a Manbug Salt at SFO and it was just too easy to carry that with nothing else! Suddenly the Dragonfly I'd gotten so familiar with seemed unnecessarily large!

Like you, I had a revelation that it was all I needed, and if I needed more I'd figure out how to make do, with finesse or more cuts. It was truly like an extension of my hand.

I think it is good for people like us who are so deep into the hobby to have an introspective moment and just spend a lot of time with one at a time. It really gives you a newfound appreciation for the design of a particular model.

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Evil D
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby Evil D » Thu Sep 10, 2020 1:55 pm

I've posted out the "relationship" factor before and how rotating doesn't really give me that satisfaction. As I've said before, I'll never reminisce about the last time I took a knife out of the box and fondled it, I've got to really use it and create memories with it. The same old same old does get boring but the stability and reliability is worth it for me. I like being able to draw and use my knife without thinking about it, I don't want to fumble around with it and I hate that unfamiliar feeling of a knife model that I don't know very well.
SHARPEN IT LIKE YOU LOVE IT, USE IT LIKE YOU HATE IT
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby ladybug93 » Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:25 pm

Evil D wrote:
Thu Sep 10, 2020 1:55 pm
I've posted out the "relationship" factor before and how rotating doesn't really give me that satisfaction. As I've said before, I'll never reminisce about the last time I took a knife out of the box and fondled it, I've got to really use it and create memories with it. The same old same old does get boring but the stability and reliability is worth it for me. I like being able to draw and use my knife without thinking about it, I don't want to fumble around with it and I hate that unfamiliar feeling of a knife model that I don't know very well.
i play with my knives enough that none of them feels unfamiliar, despite all being very different and having different lock types. the closest thing to this for me was going back to a speed safe knife again recently. i had to have it because it was a usa made kershaw with a sweet design and better style than typical of a kershaw, but it just feels awkward and flea markety (that's a real word) after using knives that have a controlled, smooth roll out.

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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby legOFwhat? » Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:26 pm

Spyderville is a magical place, three years ago I didn't even carry a knife I just kept a multi-tool in a in my car. The other day I realized I had 3 knives in one pocket and a mule in my tool bag.

Love this place :D
-Larry
Hebrews 13:6 So we may boldly say: “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”

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bearrowland
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby bearrowland » Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:27 pm

I just finished a Challenge doing something similar with my modest collection of Spyderco's. I'd love to try another, with probably my Endura.
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Albatross
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby Albatross » Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:35 pm

Whenever I give a good knife a chance, through actual use, over the coarse of weeks or months, a bond certainly forms. Fortunately for me, I've realized which models I keep coming back to, or keep reaching for, and which steels really do it for me. Now, if I could only figure out which combinations of my preferences are ideal...

A few months ago I took a step back and began using my knives more, instead of buying everything that caught my eye. Just like you, I had little to no interest in new models, steels, or combinations of both.

Taking a step back made me realize that I also enjoyed both aspects, but valued the bonding more than flashy new toys. There's some freedom in being happy with what you have. That could change at some point, and I could decide it was more fun to make purchases, but right now I'm enjoying a more practical approach.

There's a difference between feeling naked because you don't have a knife on you, and feeling like a part of you is missing because you don't have that special (to you) knife on you.
sal wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:01 pm

...But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of "deigning in the dark"...

sal

The Meat man
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby The Meat man » Fri Sep 11, 2020 7:37 am

Evil D wrote:
Thu Sep 10, 2020 1:55 pm
I've posted out the "relationship" factor before and how rotating doesn't really give me that satisfaction. As I've said before, I'll never reminisce about the last time I took a knife out of the box and fondled it, I've got to really use it and create memories with it. The same old same old does get boring but the stability and reliability is worth it for me. I like being able to draw and use my knife without thinking about it, I don't want to fumble around with it and I hate that unfamiliar feeling of a knife model that I don't know very well.
Yeah. For now, I think the enjoyment I get from trying out something new outweighs the enjoyment from using and bonding with just one particular knife. That's why I'm still here on the forum and why I still buy new knives even though I have enough to last several lifetimes. :rolleyes:

Honestly though, I may be moving in that direction with my knife hobby. A few months ago I purged my knife collection, selling off about half of them. I haven't missed them like I thought I might, and I've actually been considering doing away with a few more. The smaller my collection gets, the more I focus in on using just that particular few that really appeals to my hand and eye. Even though there is always something I could wish different about any knife (there is no such thing as the perfect knife) I know that any of them could serve me well as my only knife.

As of right now, the Sebenza has been claiming most of my pocket time, and I'm not sure when that will change.
- Connor

"What is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?"

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abbazaba
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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby abbazaba » Fri Sep 11, 2020 8:16 am

Same experience here, and well said.

A hobby can be and become many things, and a distraction is almost always one of them. Most start out as a good kind of distraction, but over time that can change. Years ago bicycles consumed me in a similar fashion, obsessed with specs and new things ... but now I just enjoy riding :)

Going as far as you dare down the rabbit hole can be beneficial and rewarding, but you might find that you lost sight of something else that is more important, like that bond with your knife, or perhaps your mortgage :p

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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby Abyss_Fish » Fri Sep 11, 2020 11:31 am

I absolutely understand this. I finished up work on my watu recently (fixing the bevel and putting new scales on it). And it’s just such a high performance knife I find myself reaching for it over almost anything else. My other knives are jealous.

Why does spyderco have to be so good at making things that cut...
I require more lc200n and thinner grinds

Current collection: Watu, Spydiechef, Native G10 salt, Waterway, K390 Ladybug, Caribbean

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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby bobnikon » Fri Sep 11, 2020 11:50 am

What a great and introspective thread. I have been feeling a yearning for that connection lately. I feel guilty because I litterally have a tool box drawer full of great knives. I feel like I HAVE to use them all in some sort of rotation. I don't even know how to shed them without taking a big hit up here in Canada. I would like to pare it down to a select group and really "get to know" them. Of course I did just buy a new one 2 days ago... Oops.

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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby Blackpearl » Fri Sep 11, 2020 12:11 pm

I’m fairly new to knives so I’m still in the honeymoon stage. I love all my knives and I carry 2-3 in my purse at a time. Hey you never know what you will need them for. But if I’m the same with my knives as I am with my purses then I don’t think I can just carry one knife for a whole month!

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Re: Thoughts on one month carry challenge

Postby TkoK83Spy » Fri Sep 11, 2020 1:20 pm

I can understand this as well Connor. When I first got into Spyderco a few years back, I feel like I was getting a new knife every other week. I would carry a knife for a day and then rotate to another. I thought every knife was awesome!

Now, I have no problem carrying a particular knife for a week straight and I think if I wanted to I could probably do the month long challenge as well, though the itch is strong for me to carry a Manix or Shaman at least once a week because they are my favorite models. Doing even just the week long carries has been very insightful though. Realizing that maybe I don't really like a model or steel as much as I thought I did (PM2, SuperBlue), or having the opposite effect of thinking a model is just ok and then realizing how much I actually like the knife (Para 3 DLC/M4)

When I carry either the Manix or Shaman, I sometimes get the feeling of...why do I even bother buying other knives anymore?? I'm very connected to them (5 Manix's and 3 Shaman's) It's now been 3 months since my last Spyderco purchase because I feel like, at the moment...my needs are filled. A handful of models I really enjoy, in various steels, scale colors or materials, knives ranging in size from the Dragonfly to the Shaman, a few SE's sprinkled in as well. I really haven't found much that lately stands out to me as new and amazing, a must have...which is kind of boring, and starting to make me worry about myself and my knives fascination!

In turn, it just leads to me continuing to use the knives I already have and gaining more appreciation or finding dislikes about them. Funny how things work and change over time! For me, as long as the Manix or Shaman are an option...I'll be happy :cool:
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