Spyderco Para-Military2

2 reviews
5-star:   1
4-star:   1
3-star:   0
2-star:   0
1-star:   0


Weight 3.9 oz / 111 g



Short of chopping wood or extremely heavy work best…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Price Paid: $105

Short of chopping wood or extremely heavy work best left to a fixed-blade knife, or tool-like versatility you would get with a multi-tool, this is one of my favorites for hiking. This is a folding lock-blade knife that weighs about 3-3/4 ounces and is about five inches long, closed; the blade is 3-1/2 inches long.

Several things to like about this knife. It is very solidly made — nothing loose or wobbly. It has an excellent locking mechanism the company calls a "compression lock," the equivalent of a liner lock but along the spine of the knife.  so, it has a strip of metal that springs into place against the wide end of the folding blade, just like a liner lock, when you  open the blade. 

the lock is right under the knuckle of your index finger.  while it takes some getting used to, i like the fact that when i disengage the lock, my fingers don't need to be in the path of the blade as it closes. the blade absolutely will not close by accident. 

The scales of the knife are made of G10 — a fiberglass/epoxy composite that is extremely durable.  the outer surface is lightly textured, which helps make the knife more grippy, less likely to slip.  It's worth noting that the texturing is less aggressive than you will find on some other G10 handles. Because G10 is so durable, scales with very deep texturing tend to scrape anything around them. Not a problem here.

I like the blade because it is relatively wide along the spine for a folding knife this size; because it is a clean, flat-ground blade that makes cutting things a little easier; has a nice, sharp, pointy tip; and because the steel used (CPM S30V) is very durable, stainless, and takes a very long time to dull. It is extremely sharp out of the box and stays that way. 

Like many knives Spyderco makes, the blade unfolds via a large round hold at the back of the blade - it is very easy to open, even if you are wearing relatively heavy gloves, by just putting your thumb on the hole and flipping it open. The parts of the blade and handle you are most likely to hold when using the knife for lighter tasks, at the base of the blade, has a series of shallow notches that, like the handle, help keep the knife from slipping. 

Finally, the knife has a metal spring clip, if you're one of those people who carries a knife in their pocket, and it has a large round hole at the bottom of the handle -  I put a piece of round webbing through the hole and sometimes use it to secure the knife to a carabiner. That's helpful in some situations.

Downsides — if you aren't wearing gloves and really bear down on this knife with a lot of pressure, the compression lock can dig into your palm. Because the locking mechanism is different than more widely-used liner locks or lockbacks, you have to get familiar with it; some might not like it, i guess.

The blade tip is narrow and pointy, which serves a purpose, but it does not seem robust enough for any laborious prying - I could see that breaking the tip. Finally, sharpening any knife blade made from this type of steel is a time-consuming process because the steel is so hard.

This is by no means an inexpensive knife, but it is built to last and works very well. Worth the price in my view.


This is an excellent slicing knife with a very clever…

Rating: rated 4 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $110


This is an excellent slicing knife with a very clever locking mechanism. The blade is thin, but very capable. For every day use, this knife will be more than up to the challenge. However, for hard use, you may need to search elsewhere.

Blade length is good, and there is enough belly to make this knife excellent for slicing food, rope, or game with extreme ease. The tip is a bit delicate due to the flat grind and blade thickness. Blade play may occur over time, but is easily solved by tightening the pivot joint.

I would absolutely recommend this knife, as it is an all around great performer.


  • Clever locking mechanism, great for one handed operation
  • Flat grind
  • Can be made very sharp given the blade profile and grind
  • Light weight
  • Very good lockup
  • Solid jimping
  • Good steel (S30V on this version)
  • Feels good in hand


  • Thin blade
  • Handle is longer than blade
  • Handle is thick
  • G10 scales may wear your pocket
  • Prone to blade play

For the price, this knife cannot be beat, especially when compared to knives such as the Benchmade Griptilian or the Benchmade 940.

The flat ground blade with a decent belly makes this knife a great slicer. The lock up is solid, and gives the user great confidence that it will not fail. The jimping on the thump and index finger holds is nice and aggressive, and gives no indication that your hand will slip forward while thrusting the knife.

The "compression lock" as it is called, is a very clever design. It is similar to a liner lock, with the exception that it is operated from the backside of the knife. This gives the user the ability to open and close the knife without ever having to put their fingers in the path of the blade.

The knife is very well constructed, however it is prone to blade play. If the knife is ever used to pry (which it should never be), it may become loose at the pivot joint. This can be resolved by tightening the screw at the joint, but will also hinder rapid deployment of the blade.

I own several versions of this knife and have carried it over the course of 3+ years. I have used it extensively for opening countless packages, mail, slicing food, rope, and plant life. I keep it clean and sharp, and it continues to serve me well.

Spyderco Para-Military2


The Spyderco Para-Military2 is not available from the stores we monitor.

If you're looking for a new folding knife, check out the best reviewed current models.