Hello again and thank you for approving my first post!
This is the most recent issue I just noticed last night, and is the reason why I joined this forum (I previously posted on BladeForums a quasi-review of this knife but didn't hear back from a single other owner so hopefully more people can chime in here!).
What I found last night, and was really the last straw (I'll post other issues below) was how I just saw that the tang cups (think that's what they're called) on the stainless liners are NOT making anywhere near full contact with the tang pins, in fact they're only making a single small (maybe 0.5 to 1mm) point of contact. If this is somehow by design I do not know, but it's unlike any of the dozen+ balisongs I've owned over the years of all different brands and designs, I can already see this super small single point of contact making a non-cleanable mark on the tang pins, and fear over time (I expect a good knife to last decades TBH) it's going to cause more damage to the knife and ultimately make it not function correctly.
Here's the best pics my iPhone could take. There's 8 possible spots the 2x double-sided tang pins can hit the 2x cups (in the open and closed position), and it happens on EVERY single one of those 8 positions. I only took 3 shots but you get the idea – they're not nestled fully inside the tang cups like they should be, and you can tell how little contact they're actually making by the super small size of those wear marks I highlighted.
The next issue immediately, and I'm not kidding or exaggerating here – within the first 15 minutes or so, damaged the G10 of this knife because of how the latch is designed (which is again different than any latch on any balisong I've ever owned). Let's look at the play of the knife which IMO is pretty decent:
BUT, that small play, when you close the latch, makes the latch commonly hit the G10 handle slabs:
And damage the handles in short order. This picture was taken within an hour of receiving the knife. The other side is also damaged now too fyi:
Another issue with the latch is how on occasion it will NOT spring up properly – again it seems to be mostly because of the G10 there. You can see in this picture how I'm squeezing the handles with enough force that the latch clears the 'hooks' of the liners with more than enough clearance, but it still isn't springing upwards like it should. This seems to be because the latch is rubbing on the liners and seizing/binding there which won't let the latch spring upwards.
Of course in a perfect world if you were ALWAYS able to squeeze the handles perfectly inward, with no slight angle, the latch would ALWAYS spring up... but hands are are a little bit squishy/flexible, so when you squeeze a hard object like a knife you're sometimes going to not squeeze those handles perfectly dead-on, and this WILL happen, and I think that should have been taken into consideration on this knife (since NOT being able to open a knife every time is a very bad thing IMO).
(this picture was taken today fyi, 10 days after I received this knife, and you can see a little bit of that damage on the other side of the G10 I talked about earlier but didn't show on that earlier picture)
Last, and before I go into this I just want to say that I REALLY hope I'm not coming across as being mean spirited here... I'm simply posting, with as much detail as I can muster, with as detailed pictures as I can take (including with marking them up in Photoshop so people can see what I'm explaining better), exactly what these issues are, and trying my best to be factual (i.e. as I see it). I'm sure as a manufacturer it's never nice to see this many problems with a product you produce... but again, just being factual and honest here...
So these are a couple pictures of the bad fit and finish of this knife. Like I said on BladeForums, I wouldn't even have bothered with this close of an examination on a $40 knife, or even a $80 knife... but this is a knife with a $300 MSRP which I paid $210 + shipping for... you expect a certain level of refinement at that price point, and (hope this isn't too forward), but I'm extremely disappointed with the fit and finish of a knife in this price class. Again this is my SIXTH Spyderco I've owned, so it's not like I'm not (normally) a fan of the company...
Here's one of the more glaring fitment issues of the knife. That spacer is sticking REALLY far out on that corner (and loosening the screws and trying to push it back in doesn't help). The spacer on the other side is the opposite and is sunk into the handle... You really don't see this from normal viewing distances of course, but you sure feel this every single time you pickup the knife and I'm not happy about that...
Here's another area in detail. The 3x red lines are showing areas which are sticking out, or sunken in... (the red circle is damage from the latch fyi). In this same pic you can see the opposite side handle where some of these same exact areas on the other handle are just fine (others areas of that opposite handle... not so much...), so this wasn't some weird design/manufacturing choice or anything as both sides are fit different:
I'll stop myself from posting some other pictures of all the different areas of the knife, but suffice to say there's a lot more of the above... but I think you get the point I'm trying to make. Is what I've posted above seem normal for Spyderco knives? I've bought two Spydercos in the last ~month, and BOTH (this and my Janisong... yes, I've been on a balisong kick lately lol
have had a whole plethora of pretty glaring issues straight out of the box I'm sorry to say, but the last Spyderco I bought was some years ago (a BEAUTIFUL Phil Wilson South Fork), and all the others before that have been absolutely impeccable and pristine (as has my brothers YoJumbo which he absolutely adores)... so I simply haven't kept up to date on their QC and manufacturing processes of late. Do other SmallFly 2 owners have any of these same issues and concerns?
In order to not finish on a negative, here's a TOTALLY AWESOME trick I can only do with this knife, which still makes me enjoy it a lot lol: