BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

Discuss Spyderco's byrd knives.
Megatron9000
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BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#1

Post by Megatron9000 »

Hello, friends!
Initially, before going Byrd I thought of it as a transition towards getting a Spyderco knife. In order to better understand myself, am I a knife person or not.
The shopkeeper, young muscular guy with gorilla-type large hands kindly showed me the entire line of products they had and explained about Spydercos mainly (that had quite sensible price tag), types of steel and serration ("they use them in mountain climbing, ideal for cutting ropes"). Then I read and watched enormous amount of sources.
I caught myself with a thought, that Byrd is still enough for me: I don't go mountain climbing or diving in the ocean, just ordinary urban life, using pocket knife for cutting office stuff (packages, labels and etc.) and that's it. People are still scared to see someone carrying a knife around (especially with serrated edge), but I feel myself complete when I know that got one.
So the question is, do you think of Byrd as a forerunner to obtaining Spyderco (and joining other section of the forum, of course)? Or maybe Byrd is just enough (yeah, stupid question, as one knife is never enough for a knife-man)? Did you get a Spyderco after Byrd and if yes, what model was that?
I will gladly appreciate any feedback from you, guys.
Michael Janich
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#2

Post by Michael Janich »

Dear Megatron9000:

Knives are very personal choices. Since you actually use your knife, its performance for your needs is the primary concern. If it does what you need it to and holds an edge well enough that you don't have to sharpen it too frequently, you have the right tool for the job. As you gain more experience, you could certainly upgrade and probably find that a better steel would hold an edge a bit longer, but the stuff you need to cut wouldn't know the difference.

Knives are also "pride-of-ownership" and collector's pieces, so carrying a nicer knife may someday appeal to you on that level. Carrying a more expensive knife, however, increases the anxiety level if it happens to get lost or broken. Less expensive knives are easier to replace.

If your byrd knife does what you need it to and you're pleased with it, you're good. And we're grateful...

Stay safe,

Mike
Megatron9000
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#3

Post by Megatron9000 »

Mike, thank you very much for a feedback! Needless to say that it means a lot to me, indeed, and helps to better understand the topic.
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embry386
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#4

Post by embry386 »

I have Byrd knives and Spyderco knives. I have a $300 Microtech switchblade and a $15 Mora Companion. As a knife's price increases, you will usually get better fit and finish, fancier and prettier materials, and sometimes more creative and experimental designs that are fun to try. Also, sometimes the higher quality blade steel is useful. If you care about those things, the more expensive knives may be worth it. However, as Mike said, less expensive knives are easier to replace, and breaking or losing one will cause less stress and worry.

My Byrds are awesome knives. I like that they're cheap. My favorite knife is the Spyderco Amalgam, but if there was a Byrd equivalent of that model I would be just as happy with the Byrd, because what I really enjoy about that knife is the ergonomics of the handle and the shape of the blade. The higher quality of Spyderco is nice, but for me, it isn't the most important thing about a knife.

My advice is -- get the Byrd. Enjoy your Byrd, use it for a few months, try to understand the things you like and don't like about it. Then go back to the store and try out all the Spydercos again, and all the other Byrds. Decide if you like any of them better than your Byrd. If you find something you like better, then buy it, enjoy it, get used to it, and try to understand what works for you about it. Repeat this process until you can't find any knives you enjoy more than the ones you already have. No rush, no worries if your preferences change as you learn more about what works for you, and no worries if you end up keeping that first Byrd for 30 years. Any Byrd will be a sturdy work knife and a good place to start, and you can adjust from there if you want.

In the end: the "best" knife isn't the most expensive, or the one made of the fanciest material... it's the knife that works best for you.
Bemo
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#5

Post by Bemo »

Embry386 and Mike really nailed it. My Meadowlark and Harrier 2 are probably sufficient. They're great knives. But they aren't perfect and you'll see after time the things that you wish were improved. My next step up was the Efficient early in the value line series. Really was a great knife. Then it was just as Michael said "wonder what a better steel would be like?" and away I went. But when it's time to loan someone a knife, or go work in the garden, it's a Byrd that gets the job.
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#6

Post by z1r »

I carry two knives at the job where I drive a forklift. One, a SE Byrd, these days a SE Wharnie Harrier II. Great for cutting open shrink wrapped pallets, etc. Lasts a couple of weeks before needing to be resharpened. The other is usually my eating knife. Usually either an S110V PM 2 or Crucarta PM2. However, I recently lost the Crucarta due to the seat belt straps on the forklift, I get on and off frequently. So, though I bought a replacement Crucarta, I've been carrying a Stretch 2 XL lately and thinking of picking up either a Cara Cara or PE Harrier 2 as my food slicer. Too easy to lose a knife at work. Don't know that I view Byrds as an intro or beginner knife, rather a good, solid, affordable, work knife to be used in conjunction with the various Spydercos I own.
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Cl1ff
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#7

Post by Cl1ff »

I became aware of Byrd knives after Spyderco.
I’ve since developed an interest in the history of both and found both styles of knives to be excellent.
I think Byrds are very solid knives as tools.
I don’t think finding the knife that works for you is a linear path, especially not always upwards in price.

In fact, because I like many things about the Byrds, there are several kinds of Spyderco knives that I enjoy which I would like to see as Byrds. To me, as others have sufficiently pointed out, the Byrd “formula” has some advantages.

My Byrds are the Finch, Raven, and Hawkbill.
The first are unused past versions that I picked up to collect because they come in packaging decorated with very interesting dinosaur-themed artwork.
The Raven is an especially nice knife for the price, though.
The Hawkbill is great for yardwork. Among the best working hawkbills available on the market, with a nice hollow grind and perfect serrations.
rex121 is the king of steel, but nature’s teeth have been cutting for hundreds of millions of years and counting :cool:
Megatron9000
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#8

Post by Megatron9000 »

Thank you, gentlemen, for your precious input! It means a lot to me.
rmeron
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#9

Post by rmeron »

They could be, but I like them just as they are
skeeg11
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#10

Post by skeeg11 »

Solid tools and solid designs. Very good build quality. Tighter lockup than many Seki City Spydercos. Many bash 8Cr13MoV because it's a Chinese steel. IMHO it's every bit as wear resistant as Buck 420HC or even a bit more so. Easier to sharpen, too. Buck 420HC may be a bit more stainless, tho. I am particularly fond of the SE Byrds. Spyderco offers a lot of choices in various steels or designs and it's nice to spoil oneself every now and then, but Byrds are a perfectly solid tool choice. If someone wants to borrow your knife, loan him your Byrd instead of the spyderco in your pocket.
toomanyquestions
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#11

Post by toomanyquestions »

The Byrd / Spyderco relationship depends on the person. For some, Byrds are surely a gateway knife; for others (such as myself) Byrds represent a parallel knife universe. I become familiar with the Delica in the late 90's or early 20's; the Byrd line crossed my path thereafter. I finally bought a Spyderco years later. More recently, a Byrd knife entered my collection, and it won't be alone for long!

My personal matrix involves expected use, value, and pocket time. If I am not going to carry or use a knife very often - emergency glove box citizen, a catch-all house blade etc - a Byrd is fine. But if I am going to carry it regularly, I want that little extra fit / finish / style found in a nice Spyderco.
ChoilsChoilsChoils
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#12

Post by ChoilsChoilsChoils »

I also got into Spydercos before I was aware of Byrd knives, but started seeing more Byrds over time (I think they are more popular now as there has been a swing away from price-point snobbery, and from China-bashing, in the knife communities I frequent). I've used two Byrds, a G10 Robin 2 and a G10 Meadowlark 2, and I think they are better than their Spyderco equivalents even before factoring in the fact that they cost 1/4 to 1/3 as much. The Robin has better ergonomics IMO than the Dragonfly (with the Dragonfly's weird handle butt shape), and the Meadowlark has a choil which the Delica lacks. You can also find both models in G10 with steel liners (or in full titanium) in stock and at reasonable prices, while the Spyderco equivalents can be rare and inordinately expensive.

There are some very minor finish flaws with the Byrds (but not fit or build quality issues) vs Spydercos, and the difference between 8cr and vg10 around the same hardness doesn't keep me up at night. I'll probably end up buying more knives from both brands, and I don't see one brand as a substitute for the other as some Byrds are superior to their Spyderco equivalents and vice-versa.
skeeg11
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#13

Post by skeeg11 »

Well said and pretty astute observations IMHO.
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#14

Post by Araignee »

I agree with all that's been eloquently stated above ; especially with the notion that Byrds represent a parallel lineup, rather than a "designated entry point" into the mainstream Spyderco collection.

IMHO Byrds offer the best bang for the bucks, as you get regular Spyderco ergonomics, good fit and finish, and very decent steel too. They are certainly suited to all of the average city-life, mundane tasks.

I hope OP found happiness with his knife choices, and will give us the pleasure to read his feedback on the matter.
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sal
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#15

Post by sal »

Hi Choils,Choils,Choils,

Welcome to our forum.

sal
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bohica1998
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#16

Post by bohica1998 »

It's funny, no matter how much you pay for a knife, there is always a pricier one out there. I just saw one for sale (used) on another forum with a starting asking price of $3.2K. For a USED knife. And it will probably never leave the safe. And I'm sure there ARE pricier ones out there.

Personally, I've always bought Spydercos, not because they are somehow superior, but because I just hadn't seen a Byrd that appealed to me - till now. I have a Meadowlark Hawkbill SE in the mail to me right now - my first Byrd (Yes, I've started a quest to find a G-10 Crossbill, so, first).

The thing is, more expensive doesn't necessarily mean better. I had a large collection at one point. One of my favorites for EDC? A Tenacious factory second (still can't find what makes it a second, other than the little notch Spyderco marks them with). Supposedly it's a "lower end" Spyderco. Not in my book. It has a buttery-smooth opening that can't be match by the rest of them.

So, in my case, Spydies are a transition to Byrds I guess.
Last edited by bohica1998 on Mon Mar 25, 2024 11:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#17

Post by akapennypincher »

I am not a Knife Expert, my tale on Byrd Series is they a value point knife, made by Spyderco.

They are value folder for person on small budget.

Sort of like A Chevrrlot, not the Cadellic the top GM product.
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Re: BYRD as transition towards Spydie knives (or NOT)

#18

Post by SpyderEdgeForever »

ChoilsChoilsChoils wrote:
Thu Dec 21, 2023 7:48 pm
I also got into Spydercos before I was aware of Byrd knives, but started seeing more Byrds over time (I think they are more popular now as there has been a swing away from price-point snobbery, and from China-bashing, in the knife communities I frequent). I've used two Byrds, a G10 Robin 2 and a G10 Meadowlark 2, and I think they are better than their Spyderco equivalents even before factoring in the fact that they cost 1/4 to 1/3 as much. The Robin has better ergonomics IMO than the Dragonfly (with the Dragonfly's weird handle butt shape), and the Meadowlark has a choil which the Delica lacks. You can also find both models in G10 with steel liners (or in full titanium) in stock and at reasonable prices, while the Spyderco equivalents can be rare and inordinately expensive.

There are some very minor finish flaws with the Byrds (but not fit or build quality issues) vs Spydercos, and the difference between 8cr and vg10 around the same hardness doesn't keep me up at night. I'll probably end up buying more knives from both brands, and I don't see one brand as a substitute for the other as some Byrds are superior to their Spyderco equivalents and vice-versa.

I am glad you posted this. I will add my observations. I love Spyderco and the people behind the brand and I am a loyal customer for life.

Sal and crew do a great job with the Byrd line. I do desire to see these changes in them, some of which you already stated:

1 more budget steel such as Sandvik 12C27 and 440C.
2 Americanized Tanto blade Byrds.
3 Byrd fixed blades with 3 to 4 inch long blades.
A Byrd version of the Caspian Salt and Spyderhawk. Meaning a Hawkbill with longer blade.
4 thicker blade stock. 3 to 3.5 or 4 mm thickness.
5 A Byrd Balisong.
6 Byrd Cara Cara with wider, less narrow blade profile.
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