Spyderco VS Kershaw: Head to Head


Choosing the right knife manufacturer is important if you want to benefit from high quality and great performance. There are a number of major players in this field that you can choose from. Two well known knife manufacturers that offer quality and great choice include Spyderco and Kershaw.

We’ve taken a look at Spyderco & S.O.G. together in this article here, now we tackle Spyderco versus another one of our favorites.  Kershaw is a reputable brand and is a well known knife manufacturer that’s been around for a long time.

Both offer options at similar price points, so let’s take a look at some of the top options as well as some details around each of the manufacturers themselves.


1. More About Spyderco

Founded in the mid-1970s, Spyderco has decades of experience when it comes to manufacturing high quality knives. It has now become one of the leading names within this industry and offers consumers and agencies access to a huge range of products.

You can rely on quality and reliability with all Spyderco knives, which makes them ideal for agencies such as the military and law enforcement as well as for a range of other purposes.  They offer a wide variety of knives but are most well known for their folders and military style tactical offerings.

2. Knife Options and Specs

Spyderco offers knives in a wide range of categories and for a variety of uses. Some of the key categories and models you can choose from include:

Silverax Premium: The wide range of folding knives from Spyderco includes locking and non-locking varieties. One of the models in the range is the Silverax Premium, which has a CPM S30V steel blade measuring 3.5 inches. The overall length when open is 8 inches, and when closed is 4.64 inches. It is pocket-friendly and has an adjustable pocket clip.

Subway Bowie: You can enjoy an excellent choice of fixed blade knives from Spyderco, which includes the stylish Spyderco Subway Bowie. Made from LC200N steel, this durable knife has a 2.8 inch blade and an overall length of 5.11 inches. It comes with an FRN handle and weighs in at 1.44 ounces.

Bug Stainless Steel: The range of EDC (everyday carry) knives offers versatility and style as well as great performances. Included within this category is the Bug Stainless Steel, which is a compact folder made from 3Cr steel. The overall length of the knife is just 2.9 inches and the blade length is 1.27 inches. It is lightweight with a weight of 0.4 ounces and has a slip-joint locking mechanism.

Para Military 2: You can look forward to quality and reliability with Spyderco’s Military Signature knives. This includes the Para Military 2, which comes with a 3.47 inch blade made from CPM Cru-Wear steel. It has a Micarta handle and a total length of 8.29 inches. This folding knife is narrowed at the end to enhance efficiency.

Native 5: If you want a sturdy, tough field knife that is ideal for a variety of activities, Spyderco will have just the thing within this category. One of the knives that you can opt for is the Native 5, which is a really stylish knife with an CPM S90V steel blade. The blade measurement is 2.95 inches and the overall length is 6.95 inches. It has a full-flat grind and a 4 inch carbon fiber handle.

Rescue 3: Quality is essential in a knife that is for use in rescue and emergency situations. One knife in this category that is ideal as a rescue knife is the Rescue 3 Lightweight, which is made from VG-10 steel with a blade measuring 3.57 inches. Its total open length is 8.29 inches and it weighs in at 3.8 ounces.

The great choice of knives and categories from Spyderco helps to ensure that there is a product available for all needs and purposes.

3. More About Kershaw

Established in 1974, Kershaw has become known for high tech design, quality materials, and superb standards when it comes to knife manufacturing.

You can choose from a great variety of knife models from this manufacturer, and you also get to benefit from great value products.

While there are some Kershaw knives that are manufactured overseas, they do have a US based manufacturing facility making a good portion of their knives as US Made.

4. Knife Options And Specs:

Some of the knife models you can choose from include:

Iridium Folding Knife: This is a really stylish knife that comes with DuraLock opening and an aluminum handle. The blade is made from D2 steel and measures 4.5 inches when closed and 7.9 inches when opened. Weighing in at 3.3 ounces, this is a lightweight but robust knife.

AM-6 Neck Knife: Small, compact yet very tough, the unique style of the AM-6 makes it ideal for an everyday carry knife. The blade is only 1.5 inches in length and the overall length is 3.25 inches. It is made from 8Cr13MoV steel with a stonewashed finish and the handle is made from glass filled nylon. It comes with a molded sheath to ensure that you can keep it protected.

The Kershaw Shuffle: A popular choice thanks to its great design and performance, the Kershaw Shuffle is a multifunctional knife with a range of features. It is a manual opening folding knife with an 8Cr13MoV steel blade with a black oxide coating. The blade is 2.4 inches in length and the total length of the knife is 5.75 inches. It comes with features such as a bottle opener, Philips screwdriver bits and bit driver, and a keychain ring.

Showtime: This is a gentleman’s knife that is beautifully designed. It has assisted opening and a reversible deep-carry pocketclip. The blade is made from 8Cr133MoV steel and has a satin and black oxide coating. The handle is also steel with a black oxide coating. The knife has a blade length of 3 inches and an overall length of 6.75 inches when open.

Dune Full Tang: The Dune is a high end neck knife that has a great design and can be used for a variety of purposes. The blade is extremely sharp and made from 3Cr13 steel with a black oxide finish and it measures 3.8 inches. The total length of the knife is 7.7 inches and it weighs 2.5 ounces. It also comes with an injection molded handle, full tang construction, and a molded sheath for protection.

While the Kershaw website does not categorize its knives, it does offer incredible choice and value as well as great quality.

5. Making your decision

You need to take a range of factors into consideration when choosing which manufacturer to buy from. Both have roughly the same amount of experience in the field and both are committed to quality and innovation.

Shopping with Spyderco is a little easier due to the categorization of its knives. However, Kershaw does offer excellent choice and great value on its products.

FAQ about Spyderco VS Kershaw Knives

Are Kershaw knives made in China?

Kershaw knives are generally made in the USA. However, they do have some models that are fabricated in China, despite the fact that the design and engineering are thought out in the US.

As an example, one of Kershaw’s best-selling knives, the Cryo, is made in China. Does that mean that the knife is cheap and made without any thought put into quality? Of course not. While most products labeled as “Made in China” are indeed very low quality, some exceptions do exist. And Kershaw’s knives are one such exception.

Are Kershaw knives guaranteed for life?

Most Kershaw knives have a limited lifetime guarantee as long as they are used by the same owner. Exceptions do exist, and those exceptions are stated on any sales page of a specific Kershaw Knife.

The Limited Lifetime Warranty is non-transferable and does not extend to normal signs of wear, rust, damage, or breakage due to improper use, improper maintenance, accidents, loss, or theft.

Do Spyderco knives have a warranty?

By default, Spyderco knives have a lifetime warranty but a few conditions are still imposed if you want to benefit from it.

For example, their warranty covers only the original knife owner and not anyone else to who they decide to sell it. As their website states:

“This warranty does not cover loss, theft, or any damages caused by accidents, abuse, misuse, improper handling, alterations, neglect, improper sharpening, normal wear, and tear, or repairs performed by any service not authorized by Spyderco, Inc.”

However, even if your knife does get broken because of your mishandling, they will provide a free estimate of the repair service cost. And if they conclude that the knife cannot be repaired, they will tell you so and offer you a replacement if available and if your model’s situation is covered by the warranty’s terms and conditions.

Final Thoughts

This post was first published on Nov. 29th, 2017, and was last updated in October 2020.

The Out sider

See Also

Related Reads

Recent Posts