Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Review: Is it the Best from This Brand?

Last Updated: by Aiden Williams

Thirty-nine years producing knives and it is no surprise how Spyderco, a Colorado-based company, has mastered the art of doing most things right. Time and time again, Spyderco has proven itself to be the go-to brand for knives that are always in demand.

This brand also boasts a growing portfolio of pocket knives ranging from EDC to tactical. Some things however remain consistent, like the unparalleled quality of the knives they produce and how functional they are for each designated task.

Researching on Spyderco knives led us to one of their most popular models, the Spyderco Paramilitary 2 knife, and the verdict is that this tool singlehandedly embodies every amazing quality that the brand represents and has become a huge fan favorite, thus making it the standard for ergonomic pocket knives.

Our Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Review

Spyderco para Military 2 Signature Folding Knife with 3.42" CPM S30V Steel Blade and Durable G-10 Handle - PlainEdge - C81GP2

Forged from a military background and designed with ergonomic features which combine to give you outstanding slicing performance, the Spyderco Paramilitary 2 is a newer model of a classic that amplifies all the previous qualities from old models and MORE.

For instance, although the handle still maintains the powerful G-10 material that is characteristic with Spyderco knives and the blade is the all-encompassing CPM-S30V stainless steel blade, both features have been trimmed off every unnecessary angle and become thinner, thus amplifying your grip and slicing experience as a user. Also, the blade tip was extended and it now includes surface jimping in both the spine and finger coil.

The result of these innovations is a knife that is well balanced, sturdy, sharp-edged, and exceptional in performance. Now, when you top that with a patented compression lock mechanism that is secure, solid, and easy to navigate, the things you can do this knife are endless.

This review would not be complete if we didn’t gush about the versatility of this product, available in different blade steels, handle colors, and overall finishing. It also allows for multiple EDC options with a four-way clip and large lined lanyard hole that can be opened with either hand.

This masterpiece remains undefeated as a pocket-friendly knife with world-class performance.

Specs

  • Product dimensions: 6.5 inches x 2.5 inches x 1 inch
  • Model: C81
  • Steel type: CPM S30V stainless
  • Compression lock system
  • Handle Material: Textured G-10
  • Carry option: Four-Position Clip
  • Full flat grind
  • Round Hole Diameter: 0.57”

Features and Benefits

Varieties

The Spyderco Paramilitary 2 knife comes in many varieties and the primary five include a black handle with standard SS blade (C81GP2); black handle with black finish blade and clip (C81GPBK2); digital camo design handle with standard SS blade (C81GPCMO2); midnight blue handle with stainless steel blade and clip (C81GPDBL2), and digital camo handle with black finish stainless blade and clip (C81GPCMOBK2).

We like the blades with the digital camo design better because of their unique aesthetics.

Blade

All Spyderco Paramilitary 2 knives are designed using one of the most popular premium steels ever, the CPM-S30V. The CPM-S30V is a martensitic powder-made stainless steel that features an extremely sharp blade that it is cut like ever material is butter. The entire length of this blade is 3.44 inches.

The blade features a flattened grind to give better control while cutting, with a small hole that allows you open and close the knife with one hand without the inconvenience of “wobbly” sounds that happen when you use a knife too often.

The CPM-S304 features an incredibly sharp tipped blade which you may at first think is prone to breaking off. However, you bet Spyderco already covered that, as not only is this blade sharp, it is also made with the best quality material to ensure that its durability is not compromised.

The slimness of the blade on Spyderco Paramilitary 2 knives is what makes it amazing for detailed cutting work, and its cutting performance is truly off the charts.

Handle

You see, there are handles and there is the G-10, and for every Spyderco paramilitary 2 knife we have used, we can attest to the naturalness of wielding a tool so effortlessly because it was made with one of the finest handles to ever exist, ergonomically curved just right to help the user with balance and padded with the right materials to ensure maximum comfort while working.

The standard weight of a G-10 handle on a Spyderco Paramilitary 2 is 3.75 ounces. The handle also comes with a reversible clip that can be positioned in four ways, sticks deep in your pockets like they were tailored for it, and can be tipped down, up, right, and left ever so effortlessly.

Deployment System

The Spyderco Paramilitary 2 knife goes all out with a fully patented compression lock system that makes opening the blade a breeze and locking in even easier, all accessed with lightning speed. Chances of your blade falling off with this system are next to zilch.

Also, it features a sublime pivot system that makes opening the blade that much easier, enhanced too by a widened thumb hole that makes navigation a breeze.

Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Review Summary

Pros

  • An enhanced version of previous classics
  • Best pocket-friendly knife for your needs
  • Ease of use
  • Lightweight yet sturdy
  • Razor-sharp
  • Superior ergonomics like the G-10 handle that makes for better grip and improved all-round performance
  • Secure locking mechanisms

Cons

  • Pricey
  • It is difficult to use for people with larger-sized hands

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General User Impressions

Word on the street is that the Spyderco Paramilitary 2 knife is one of the best things to happen in the life of the average knife enthusiast. It is quite incredible how this knife continues to evolve with innovative features while maintaining its good old traditional looks.

While the previous models received widespread interest and sales, this improved classic began a new wave of expectations for pocket knives. It is a comprehensive package of high ergonomics, comfort, portability, and unbridled performance on raging premium steel.

If you are a serious knife enthusiast, then you own or must have owned a Spyderco paramilitary 2 knife at some point in your life.

Bottom line? This knife is so functional that most people who have used it are raving about it, and really, when you find a knife that balances compactness with high performance, that is the knife you want to keep.

Our Opinion

At first hold, the word that comes to mind is stability. The Spyderco Paramilitary 2 may be a relatively expensive blade, but it is worth more than three lesser-priced inferior blades.

When you use a knife as often as we do, you quickly realize how important grip is, and this highly ergonomic knife gives you control no matter which angle you take. Featuring the right fit, finish, and functions that qualify it to be a premium choice, this model offers substantial value that is worth investing in.

Things To Consider Before Buying An EDC Knife

Price

Even though this knife is lesser priced when compared to other Spyderco models, it is still a premium-priced knife.

While you can be rest assured to get twice the value for your money spent, it is important to check your budget and allow it inform your buying decision.

Hand size

Unfortunately, this knife was not designed for all sizes of hands. If you have large hands, it would be difficult to use as it is built for small to medium sizes. I hope that Spyderco does something for bigger hands soon.

Use

Sure, this is an EDC knife that can follow you anywhere and help you with every basic task in the book, but is it really what you need?

If you’re a hunter or a handyman that deals with a lot of woodwork, you may want to consider blades with a broader belly.

Product FAQs

It’s one thing to know that you should purchase a Spyderco Para Military 2 knife after reading this review, and another to get the answers to specific questions that determine its use in your life. As awesome as this knife is, it still has to align to your needs in order for you to fully appreciate its value.

Here are some FAQs on this product:

Q: How Do I Know That A Spyderco Paramilitary 2 Knife Is Legit?

A: Truth is, it’s hard to tell because counterfeits are getting even more convincing these days. However, this comprehensive video will give you three distinct differences between fake and real.

Q: Is There An Insurance Policy On This Product?

A: So long as there was no loss, theft, defects stemming from misuse, or repairs from an unauthorized dealer, you are liable for adequate insurance to cover the life of the product. Check out the terms and conditions here.

Q: Why A Compression Lock Instead Of A Standard Liner Lock System? Which Is More Secure/Reliable?

A: The compression lock is stronger, more reliable, and safer than a standard liner lock system.

Q: Why Is The Digital Camo Version More Expensive Than Other Versions? Aesthetics?

A: The increase in price transcends the aesthetic facelift because this version comes with DLC coating that works for a prolonged blade lifespan.

It also greatly reduces the risk of corrosion and can perform in the most hostile of weather environments. The coating will wear off with time though.

Final Thoughts

Thing is, if we didn’t think the Spyderco Paramilitary 2 is a value knife, we wouldn’t dedicate hours to writing a full-length review about it! It was like Spyderco took a literal meaning to the term, EDC, and designed a tool that embodies every quality.

The result? A blade to use for basic to strenuous household tasks, while still being able to carry along on hiking, camping, fishing, and some hunting adventures.

We love how this knife subtly balances sharpness with breadth, featuring a tip for piercing and puncturing that stretches out into a broader, more practical blade that makes digging into materials easier.

The Spyderco Paramilitary 2 possesses a myriad of functions that belies its rather laid-back looks, yet these looks come together beautifully in familiar design that we have come to love.

Last word on this universally loved product? Believe the hype. Get a blade today.

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