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Spyderco CPM-SPY27

Discussion in 'Spyderco' started by DA170, Jun 10, 2020.

What model with CPM-SPY27?

  1. Para 3 Lightweight

    23 vote(s)
  2. Manix 2 Lightweight

    13 vote(s)
  3. Native 5 Lightweight

    17 vote(s)
  4. MULE TEAM 28

    14 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Mark Spark

    Mark Spark

    Jun 1, 2020
    If you read the article at Knifesteelnerds, you come away without learning of any advantage over S35VN: https://knifesteelnerds.com/2020/03...ents-toughness-corrosion-resistance-and-more/
    I’d guess its purpose and only advantage over S30 (better edge retention) or S35 (better toughness) is it disguises a big price increase. Inflation is ratcheting up. Get ready for it.
    Neither of these will be discontinued, especially in favor of a Spyderco exclusive, I predict.
    cistercian and BITEME like this.
  2. John_0917

    John_0917 Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 15, 2014
    S45VN is the replacement, at least for S35VN, and possibly S30V as well.
    drebs likes this.
  3. Don M

    Don M

    Apr 30, 2000
    The SPY27 FRN blue is just a bit lighter than the LW FRN S110V blue. There is not much difference, but it is visible.
  4. Rusty_shackelford


    May 3, 2013
  5. John_0917

    John_0917 Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 15, 2014
    Glad to see the HRc result, it’s always nice to see what Spyderco does with steels to get the maximum potential from them.

    Many brands cough ZT cough turn out 20CV/M390 at 58-59, probably because it’s earlier to grind, Spyderco OTOH is turning our theirs at Peter North levels; the performance shows the difference.
    DA170 likes this.
  6. DA170

    DA170 Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 12, 2020
    My Elmax 0770 and S35VN 0909 lost an edge like they were 56-58!
    John_0917 likes this.
  7. ucfgrad93


    Dec 13, 2017
    Native 5 LW is my choice.
  8. pcguy23

    pcguy23 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 14, 2014
    DA170, how are your steel tests going?
    I saw the pile of cardboard you sliced up
    Oloung1 and civtamayo like this.
  9. DA170

    DA170 Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 12, 2020
    No real test, Just cutting as much as I can with the new steel.

    My granddaughters birthday was an opportunity to cut a large amount of cardboard. Tore into some wood today in the backyard and then cut some potatoes on a wood cutting board. The factory edge reflected light afterwards, But it's not S110V. Used a green compound loaded strop with decent success.
    oldmanwilly and John_0917 like this.
  10. Mark Spark

    Mark Spark

    Jun 1, 2020
    And that’s one reason why I won’t touch a ZT. The other is all those videos showing the frame lock slip. Who needs that in the back of their mind?
    John_0917 and jux t like this.
  11. 353


    Feb 20, 2015
    I would give that a little sharpening as well before stropping, if the edge shows reflection like you say.

    Might get rid of some burnt steel in the same go..
  12. BITEME

    BITEME Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 14, 2007
    62 per BBB of his knife anyway
  13. SubMicron

    SubMicron Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 2, 2020
    I'm planning on doing a controlled cardboard cut test. Still waiting for mine to arrive.
  14. DA170

    DA170 Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 12, 2020
    I agree 100%......

    Was just trying to see how far I could push the factory edge! The last bit of double wall cardboard started to chip the blade. The knife cut a significant amount of material over a 4 day period. 2020-06-17 18.12.57.jpg
    Eli Chaps and SubMicron like this.
  15. SubMicron

    SubMicron Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 2, 2020
    Just got home... it was delivered today!
  16. SubMicron

    SubMicron Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 2, 2020
    I'm the opposite with a new steel. The first thing I wanted to do was take the factory edge off and get to know the steel on the diamond plates. I also want to remove any steel that may be distressed at the apex.

    The factory edge was the typical Spyderco edge, functional and very sharp. It had no problem shaving arm hair.

    Diamond plates make quick work of Spy-27 and I'm happy with how the steel responds. I ran an excessively full progression simply to experience Spy-27 on every grit. I used a combination of Atoma plates and DMT DiaSharp... 220 DMT, 400 Atoma, 600 Atoma, 1200 Atoma, 4000 DMT, 8000 DMT.

    So that's completely excessive. Despite all of that goofing around, I've sharpened it for the purpose of being sharp and it is.

    With all of that, not once did it give me a bur problem and the steel didnt misbehave on any grit.

    It takes a fine edge very well and is very responsive to diamond compound strops. Aiming for the keenest edge possible, I stropped at 6um 3 passes per side, 3um 5 per side, 1um 10 per side, 0.25 about 10 per side. From there, as expected it whittled, split, or cut a free hanging hair, every try. After that, I did an additional 10 passes per side on 0.1 micron and it easily feathers a hair.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2020
  17. jpm2


    Nov 19, 2014
    My only gripe with s30v is the burring problem. It might just be me, or this particular knife, but it's one of very few steels that give me fits getting a clean, strong, & stable apex, so this is very encouraging.
  18. SubMicron

    SubMicron Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 2, 2020
    I have some preliminary results. I tested my Para3 LW SPY-27 against a Benchmade Bugout in S30V and did two different tests, with one variable changed for each pair of tests.

    Before testing, as previously mentioned, I did a heavy sharpening and removed any steel near the edge that theoretically may have been burnt or fatigued, as is common among production folders. The Bugout is easily on its 20th edge.

    I used the Para3 to cut down a lot of cardboard boxes in preparation for the test. Anecdotally, SPY-27 seemed to outperform S30V. After stropping and using it more, I sharpened the knife again.

    The cardboard is all brand new, 32lb edge crush rating, purchased from Home Depot in a pack of 25 large boxes. They've been in my basement for 2 weeks.

    Because cardboard is corrugated, to cancel the variable of which direction it's being cut, I alternate directions every 30 or every 15 cuts, depending on if im getting close to the end of the test.

    For the purpose of this test, I was making 9" cuts since the box started out with 18" dimensions.

    There's no cutting board being used that's dulling the knife. I'm hanging each section over the end of a table, cutting strait down through the cardboard, with cardboard strips falling into a box underneath. From start to end of the cut, the knife is parallel with the ground and makes contact with nothing except for what's being cut.

    Sharpening progression used: DMT DiaSharp 220, Atoma 400, Atoma 600
    Strop: 10um 5 passes per side, 3um 5pps, 1um 10pps, and 0.25um 5pps.

    With each, I verified the edge by first whittling a free hanging hair, then cut magazine paper in all directions.

    After that, the blade gets taped off, exposing only a 1" section.

    The stopping point to the test is when the knife no longer will easily slice copy paper in both directions. With a slow slice from end to end of the exposed edge, if it hangs up or fails to start, it's done. I check every 15 or 30 cuts. It should be able to make 5 consecutive cuts in a row without hanging up.

    With a cardboard cut test, what's being tested isnt entirely Wear Resistance, which means results often do not directly correlate with CATRA tests. Clean cardboard is almost entirely cellulose, not sillica. Because the primary abradant (cellulose) is significantly softer than the test media (steel), what's being tested more than anything is the durability of the fine apex to the dynamic compressive forces that it endures while cutting cardboard.

    For those reasons, the pressure and angle need to be controlled by the tester, which is relatively easy since we're testing a knife that's sharp from start to end of the test.

    The angle of approach relative to the cardboard must be maintained. If you cut cardboard while holding the knife at 90° to the cardboard, its substantially more difficult to push cut than if you hold at about 45°. The harder you push the knife, the quicker it dulls.

    So I did two pairs of tests, one at 90° to the cardboard and the other at 45°. Here are the results:

    Holding at 90° to the cardboard
    Benchmade Bugout S30V - 157.5 feet
    Spyderco Para3 LW SPY-27 - 303 feet

    Its important to note, this result does not mean SPY-27 has double the edge retention of S30V. It's also important to note that my S30V result is within the range typically found with other published cardboard cut tests. It also approximately matches the result I got with Spyderco S30V with a different brand cardboard of the same specifications.

    Test #2

    Holding at 45° to the cardboard
    Benchmade Bugout S30V - 315 feet
    Spyderco Para3 LW SPY-27 - 690 feet

    This is a significant gain. I actually conducted the 45° degree tests before the 90° tests.

    The reason the 45° test set is about double of what the 90° tests are because it takes about twice as much pressure to push cut at 90° versus 45°.

    Cardboard has to spread out of the way of the blade. This is much more difficult if the cardboard has to spread from side to side, like it does when the knife is held at 90°. When the knife is held at 45°, one side of the cut bends in front of the blade and the other in back of it, which is much easier. Pressure matters.

    Edit: I ran a 3rd knife on both angles. I tested a Civivi Shredder in D2 steel. This is a $60 knife with an inferior steel and a big geometry advantage. Its significantly thinner behind the edge. I need to just buy a caliper but the thickness difference is obvious since all of these have about a 16 degree per side edge.

    When tested at both angles, the dynamics of the Civivi versus the other two give an interesting insight into the cardboard cut test itself.

    With the Civivi Shredder being thinner behind the edge, and thinner overall, plus having a hollow grind, make it act much differently than the others with this test.

    First I'll say the hollow grind makes the knife significantly more unstable during the cutting. I'm trying to stay focused on doing strait thin cuts and it wants to wobble alot when held at 90 degrees. The full flat grind of the Para3 and high flat grind of the Bugout make them much more stable.

    When held at 45 degrees, the Shredder glides through like a dream. Being thinner behind the edge, and thinner overall, it produces less friction because the cardboard doesn't have to spread as wide as the blade passes through. This means less compressive forces at the apex which means better edge retention, at least for this test anyway.

    Here's the results:

    Civivi Shredder
    Held at 90° to the cardboard it cut 117 feet

    It should be expected that Civivi's D2 will fall below Benchmade's S30V. I suspect without the geometry advantage, the D2 would have quit sooner.

    #2 Civivi Shredder
    Held at 45° to the cardboard it cut 348 feet.

    That beats the Bugout result at 45° which was 315 feet. Again the Para3 SPY-27 did 690 feet at 45°

    For purposes of this test the Bugout and Para3 did not have a significant geometry advantage over one another. They both required similar pressure. The Civivi on the other hand was noticeably easier when held at 45 degrees.

    My belief so far is that holding the knife at 90 degrees is a better test of the steel and holding it at 45 degrees is a better test of the knife overall. In the case of the Para3 SPY-27, it just plowed through with superior edge stability.

    When holding at 90 degrees, the pressures of the cardboard against the whole blade seem to cancel out most of the geometry advantages regarding the thickness behind the edge. This would be true only up to a point, and then geometry will always win. Wear resistance and edge stability only go so far.

    It would appear that the 45 degree angle allows geometry advantages of the blade to shine through more easily, which allowed D2 to beat S30V.

    With all of this cutting, and a sore hand, I can say that the Spyderco Para3 LW definitely has an ergonomic advantage over the Benchmade Bugout.

    Because SPY-27 is run a bit harder than S30V typically is, it will have better edge stability than S30V thus giving it better edge retention in many real world scenarios. The difference will be most noticeable by those who keep their knives very sharp.

    We need more tests of SPY-27. My numbers are surprisingly high. I'll do some more when possible.
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2020
  19. DA170

    DA170 Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 12, 2020
    Nice work and thanks for sharing!
    SubMicron likes this.
  20. Mark Spark

    Mark Spark

    Jun 1, 2020
    Yes, very nice work. The difference is surprisingly high as you said. I see it’s got 1.5% cobalt. Maybe it’s hardened significantly higher than S30v usually is.
    I see the price at Knifecenter is $42 higher than the same lightweight para 3 in BD1N. That’s a 40% adder, which is also surprising. It’s hard to tell what the S30V adder is since they don’t put it in a lightweight Para 3.
    This could be a fantastic steel.

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