I just returned from a long trip to my home town. In early December, my younger brother was diagnosed with liver failure and unfortunately, he passed away on December 30 at the age of 55. I was with him when he died and he passed away peacefully in his sleep.
It was a tough time for all of us.
After the funeral, we started closing down his businesses and sorting his personal effects. It was exhausting work, so to get away from things for a while every evening, I headed to his shop, which in many ways, was his sanctuary. I cleaned and sharpened all his tools and hung them back on their pegs. I sorted his turning blanks and stacked them above the lathe. I swept the floor and carried out the remaining trash. As I was going through the drawers in his tool chest, I opened a drawer that stopped me in my tracks.
I stood staring at my Brother's knife collection - built over 40+ years. He was a haphazard collector - he had ancient trusty Case knives, some older Buck folders, a few newer Gerbers, Boker, Benchmades, and Cold Steel models, as well as an assortment of "user" knives. He also found switchblade knives irresistible - he had some nice Microtech models, some nice quality Italian stilletos, and some German lever-action models. He also had a soft spot for cheapo flea-market chinese switchblades in all sorts of configurations. Probably sixty total. What a hoot to sort through them.
Then I spotted the Spydercos. He had four of them - lined up in the front of his cabinet. All of them with a patina that you only get with prolonged usage over many years. I had gifted all four of these to him over the past 30 years.
The first one was the original Ecomony/Standard model (C05) in AUS-6 steel. It was infamous for its clip which was punched out of the handle - but which was still revolutionary when it came out. I bought it for a Christmas present to him in 1986.
Next was an original serrated yellow Catcherman (C17) in AUS-8. It served as his primary filet knife for many years. I believe I got this for his birthday in about 1992.
The third Spyderco is the MT06 Mule in CPM-S35VN. I hand crafted some scales for him out of burgundy micarta and made a horizontal belt sheath for it. The Mule survived, but the sheath did not... I gave this to him in late 2010.
The fourth and final Spyderco is the illustrious Paramilitary Sprint in CTS-20CP (C81GGY20CP2) in grey g10. When these originally came out in 2011, I bought two of them. I put burgundy micarta scales on mine, and gave my Brother the other one with its stock grey scales for Christmas. It is possibly my favorite Spyderco of all time. And my Brother's Para proudly shows off its years of loving use. I plan on sharpening it and carrying it for the next few years.
To Sal, Gail, Eric, and the entire Spyderco crew - thank you for sharing your incredible, visionary products with us over these past four decades.
13 JAN 2019