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Spyderco Delica photo
Spyderco Delica
Spyderco Delica

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Why I don't leave home without my Spyderco

I've carried a Spyderco knife every day for the past 15 years. I've had a Spyderco Clipit on my person while wearing a tuxedo in several weddings, hiking in Italy, and riding the Tokyo subway.

My daily companion is my Spyderco Delica, a small, lightweight pocketknife that excels at cutting chores. The Spyderco Delica has been the workhorse knife of the Spyderco lineup for more than a decade. But many defensive tactics experts know the Delica to be an excellent defensive tool as well. As far back as the early 1990s, entire self-defense systems were designed around the Delica, most notably the famed "Northwest Safari Clipit Class" in Seattle.

Small enough for legal carry, with a serrated blade that cuts well enough for self-defense, the Delica is a great everyday carry knife. It's relatively cheap, compared to "fighting folders" like the AFCK, Emerson CQC, and Cold Steel Voyager. If you lose one, you can easily pick up another. I have four--including a left-hand model that positions the opening hole for the left hand.

Key Stats
Blade Steel VG-10
Blade Thickness 3/32" 2.5mm
Diam. Blade Hole 15/32" 12mm
Edge Type 50/50, PlainEdge, SpyderEdge
Handle Material Fiberglass Reinforced Nylon
Hardness 60-62
Length Blade 3" 77mm
Length Closed 4" 102mm
Length Cutting Edge 2 11/16" 68mm
Length Overall 7" 177mm
Weight 1.9oz 54g

These stats are for the latest revision of the Delica--Spyderco has refined the design over the years to include VG-10 steel for the blade and a redesigned handle, this time with a metal clip. The photo above is of an older model, with the discontinued Black-Ti coated blade for corrosion resistance. I use the knife often when fishing, either to cut up bait or to clean fish, and the coating makes it easier to clean off the blood and guts.

With a blade length of 3 inches, the knife is legal to carry in most jurisdictions, and up until 9/11, was legal to carry on commercial flights. Some "experts" discount the usefulness of a short-bladed knife in a fight. I don't think that the short length is a real handicap. Having a weapon available is better than no weapon at all, and this knife is always on my person.

Carrying a knife isn't for everyone--but if you are looking for a great all-around knife, the Spyderco Delica is an excellent value. As always, check the local laws in your area before carrying a knife or any other weapon.

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• The Spyderco Story • Martial Arts: Knife Fighting

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