Spyderco Tenacious Review: Does It Still Stack Up?
Reputable knife companies like Spyderco don't always treat knife lovers to attractive price points. But when they do, they're sure to get every knife lover's attention.
That's the case with Spyderco Tenacious. Designed as an EDC knife, this folder is a good choice for anyone looking for a budget-friendly option. But what exactly does it offer for such a low pricing point?
The following review of Spyderco Tenacious will break down the knife into various parts to give you an idea of how good the knife is and whether you should get it.
Spyderco Tenacious overview
Spyderco Tenacious is a mid-sized EDC knife and its name, "Tenacious," pretty much summarizes this knife—it means being tough and tireless in achieving your goals
That's a perfect name for this hard use knife as it offers you both performance and value.
It comes in a leaf-shaped blade made from 8cr13moV stainless steel and perfect grind for exceptional slicing performance. The blade has an oversized Spyderhole to allow you to deploy smoothly and quickly.
It features Spyderco's trademark Spyderhole for ambidextrous, one-handed operation. Skeletonized stainless steel liners are the heat of this knife's sturdy liner locking mechanism and, at the same time, the foundation for its lightly textured, non-slip G-10 scales.
A 4-way pocket clip added to this knife provides you with the option of carrying this knife in up to 4 positions
Don't forget that this budget knife is made in China. But this is less of an issue since the manufacturer remains Spyderco—one of the most reputable names in the US pocket knives industry.
8Cr13MoV stainless steel
The handle of the Tenacious involves layers of steel with G10 scales. We like that the brains behind this knife design milled the stainless steel out to help keep the weight low for increased portability for everyday carry.
Despite the skeletonization, the steel liners still feel pretty solid and leave no room for flexing of the knife handle.
The scales on the handle are lightly textured for a secure grip, and you won't have to worry about this knife slipping out of your hand, even in wet conditions. They also feel natural in your hand.
Because the scales aren't aggressive, they won't devour your jeans pocket as it always happens with some knife handles.
A quick look at this knife, you'll quickly notice that it's contoured around the liner lock. This makes it easy and comfortable to use. The jimping on the lock pairs with the jimping on the thumb ramp to further enhance the comfort and ergonomics of this knife.
Because the back of this handle has an open design, you can easily clean dirt and debris out of the handle without necessarily disassembling your knife.
Above all, the handle is fashioned with a lined lanyard hole to let you easily attach lanyards and fobs.
Tenacious features an 8Cr13Mov steel blade. This is the Chinese version of the Japanese AUS-8 steel.
It comes sharp out of the box, and it holds its edge reasonably well—but not as good as the high-end knife steels. This means you'll have to sharpen your knife more often. But it compensates for this by being pretty easy to sharpen. A few passes on a ceramic rod will restore its sharpness pretty quick.
The 3.39-inch blade is suitable for an EDC knife—making it a big workhorse for handling your day-to-day tasks while being small enough to fit your pocket. What's more, this blade has a suitable thickness of 0.22 inches, giving it great strength and enabling it to hold up to daily use.
Another thing worth noting is that this blade comes in a leaf shape design. With a full flat grind, this knife will make a great slicer while still offering enough belly for EDC tasks like opening packages, slicing carrots/apples, sharpening pencils, and so on.
Note that you can also get the Tenacious in straight/plain edge, a serrated edge, or a combination of both types of edges. This makes it a highly versatile EDC knife and enables you to choose the design that meets your specific applications.
If Spyderco would consider upgrading the blade steel in this knife, it will definitely join the club of those high-end EDC knives.
There are knives with bad handle design. And these are mostly found in the same price realm as the Tenacious. But once again, this Spyderco proves itself better than the pack with its great ergonomics.
It comes designed with a pretty big handle—though not as big as the paramilitary 2—to comfortably fit your hand well and enable you to securely and comfortably use it. The handle corners are well-rounded for added comfort and to eliminate hotspots possibility.
Traction is great too for this handle, and you can comfortably and safely use it even in wet conditions.
Additional touches to this knife handle that elevate its ergonomics include the jimping on the finger choil and thumb ramp. These give your thumb a great anchor point when you're exerting some serious power behind your knife—say when engaging it in demanding cutting tasks.
The size-to-weight ratio of this knife blade and knife are on point, and the folder feels well balanced in your hands. This enables you to use it for long hours without feeling fatigued.
Deployment and lock feature
The deployment for this knife is super-fast and smooth—just like the premium Spyderco knives.
This folder comes with the Spyderhole (thumbhole) as it's standard across all Spyderco knives. This makes it easy for you to quickly access the blade whether you've gloves on or not, and regardless of weather conditions.
The hole size is big enough to allow you to open your knife smoothly and quickly.
Because this knife is equipped with phosphor bronze bushings, it delivers a super-smooth action. You'll like that these bushings are pretty thing and enable you to click this knife open—translating to super-fast deployment!
You'll also appreciate that this folder comes with a liner lock that bites deep into the blade to deliver solid and secure lockup. When this lock is engaged, you'll also not deal with any up and down or side to side blade movements. This is rare for a folder in this price range.
Tenacious has a 4-way pocket clip which means great versatility and lets you carry in all 4 possible positions. You can easily mount it on the knife for righ or left hand, tip-up, or tip-down carry.
The clip design is Spyderco's signature hourglass shape. It is famed for offering excellent pocket retention and doesn't shred up your jean pockets like other clips in both low and high-end knives do.
Don't forget that this clip is pretty firm and has a low riding design that improves knife retention and promotes discreet carry!
Fit and finish
Since this is a Chinese-made knife with a budget price point, most people aren't always sure of its build quality.
Amazingly, we found everything about this knife to be pretty perfect. We can agree those Chinese knife smiths did a great job. The blade is perfectly centered, which is rare in most budget knives.
The deployment is on point and super smooth. The lock is wiggle-free and has no play, closes smoothly, and centers in the handle when you lock your knife. Not to forget, the blade is razor-sharp straight from the factory.
The handle has an even grippy pattern and looks perfect. The jimping is well cut, and there's no frustrating handle flex.
Overall the fit and finish you get in this knife are way better compared to other "made in china" EDCs or other folders in the same budget price range.
Some knives well above this price point also won't come close to this knife's fit and finish.
Kudos to those craftsmen who worked on this knife in China!
Also available on:
The design and quality of Tenacious are great for the price. The deployment and lockup are on point. The fit and finish are surprisingly good for a knife with a low price point.
The handle is a perfect size and feels quite comfortable in your hands. And the blade comes in just the ideal size to handle various day-to-day tasks.
Probably one area that Spyderco needs to improve on this knife is the blade steel. But this would definitely mean a higher price point for the Tenacious. So, the choice of steel is, again, great for the price.
Don't let the "Made in China" tag fool you. What matters most is that it is made by a respected brand that puts more weight on high standards for quality control to ensure they deliver quality and performing products.
This Spyderco Tenacious is a must-consider if you're on the market for a budget EDC knife from a reputable company.