Pros: Handle Material, Blade Material, Handle Feel, Weight, Blade Sharpness, Ease of Opening, None
Cons: Lock Ease of Use
A Little Closer To Perfection
Innovation leads to perfection, and every new idea, whether it eventually catches on or not, serves as another step toward attaining that perfection. There is little to compare between what was once considered to be ideal with what is commonly available today. There is no mistaking the improvements in design that can be attributed to having a better selection of materials now for building knives. After continuing efforts to make the best of the ergonomics involved, folding knives are now stronger, sharper, faster, lighter, and conform better to more exacting tolerances than ever before. Those having need for a stronger and heftier knife should appreciate having a Manix2. There is no need for assisted opening or for some protruding lever that flips the blade open so fast it frightens off onlookers. Nor is there anything that can be considered exotic about the appearances of the Manix2. It is well suited for performing the daily chores in a variety of occupations. It is adequate for my use working in a warehouse. However, noticing that most models get some improvements over the years, I'm observing instead, that the Manix is going through some downgrading. For example, previous models had a better blade, and the Ball-Bearing Lock that is now implemented on the Manix2 is not a provision everyone can appreciate. Regardless, this Manix2 is big and bold and allows a solid, non-slip grip in all weather conditions with more than 50% jimping machined around its stainless steel frame. Thus, function is combined with good appearances. The Manix2 has one of the strongest designs available from Spyderco, and Spyderco even says so. Apparently there is widespread appreciation for lightweight knives lately, but it is my contention that a good knife for the workplace will have some heft to it without presenting a gaudy appearance. In fact, having the additional heft of a standard thickness framework instead of the thinned up panels as currently provisioned on the Manix2 would help extend its versatility. Massive Drop Point Blade -- The Manix2 blade gets a shiny polished finish just short of being a mirror finish. Mirror finishes are not the norm as they once were, and a dull bead blasted finish is just not much fun, especially after it rusts. The huge blade on the Manix2 could easily be mistaken for a spear point and it is very sharp as delivered. It serves very well for piercing and cleanly slicing row after row of plastic sheeting and for whacking up strapping and cardboard to no end. Spyderco should reconsider and revert back to installing 4mm thick blades again as were implemented on the original C95 Manix. The more intrusive the wedge when splitting joined materials, the better it works and the more I like it. Ball Bearing Lock System -- It is a unique locking system and fortunately my first Manix2 has performed to the perfection that was intended by its design. Wearing my canvas work gloves takes nothing away from that. The Spyderco bearing-lock system is fully contained in that it doesn't require any additional slider or backup safety to insure that the blade maintains a positive lockup. The first time I pulled back the bearing control while the blade was open, the weight of the blade alone allowed it to fold neatly into place. However, this is not a system that everyone will appreciate having, and it is not a system for those with dainty hands. Even under perfect conditions the control button for the bearing lock still falls short of expectations since it requires pressure applied on both sides of the controller in order to pull the button enough to unlock the blade. It can be done but is certainly not accomplished with the same ease as is typical of the other similar systems from Benchmade, SOG, and now from Kershaw. Upon subsequent ordering for some additional Manix2 knives, I discovered they are not all created with equal operability. The lockup can be a little too tight, as experienced on one of them, and having a lever available to help pull the bearing back out of its seat would be a welcomed provision, nor would it be in the way of anything. The fix is to use both hands as is commonly the case when closing up a lock-back knife. I discovered that holding the massive Manix2 blade at the thumb-hole provides some additional support for helping to unseat the ball bearing enough to close the blade. No amount of my best Teflon slickum made this little operation any easier. As such, Spyderco's ball-bearing lock must stay in the rumble seat for now because the other AXIAL type of locking mechanisms typically allow full operation from just one side of the knife in the truest sense of being ambidextrous. Additionally, all the other brands have worked smoothly and equally the same from one knife to the next. Some newer knives that get my attention are being provisioned with finger choils that allow gripping the knife with hand placement somewhat forward on the handle. A small section where the blade meets the handle is machined to provide a choil indent for the index finger to nestle into with a firm grip that has the thumb pressing down on the angled jimping area of the blade. Thus, the blade and handle are held in a solid grip by the entire hand and this is intended for better control of the knife blade while cutting. The several Spyderco knives that are implemented this way are just as interesting as the Manix2, encompassing a variety of locking systems and special configurations among them. The Slip-Joint knives, or SLIPITS as Spyderco likes to call them, have the most to benefit from this provision since it also provides a method for gripping a knife that just naturally prevents the blade from suddenly buckling closed while under heavy pressure. The Manix2 also has this choil indent, and I can appreciate the solid grip over the entire blade and handle when necessary to bear down harder than normal on the blade. Overall it provides a more positive grip when using any knife it is provisioned on. In closing, the Spyderco Manix2 is a design that defines Spyderco's commitment to innovation, incorporating many of the features I have learned to appreciate having in a modern everyday carry at work. However close to it, the Manix2 isn't perfect, so Spyderco should stop and reconsider the current direction this design is going. To maximize the inherent potential of this knife, it needs to be beefy and include extra resistance to corrosion. All this lightweight nonsense needs to be abandoned so a new Bionic Manix can emerge from the Chambers of Wizards and Dreams.