Twenty years ago they were no digital caméra and I used my video caméra and extract one frame. Hey, this is Fred, in 1998 and this is a review kept in JD archives when it was first displayed on Geocities, a true blast of the past ! More to come soon… 😉
The other pictures are taken from the Sharpfinger PITS comparaison review.
So let’s see that old review and tone we use to employ back then:
SHARPFINGER and WOLFERINE
152OT 152UH by Fred Perrin (and Nemo)
An extension of your finger that was good
for skinning large squirrels and small elephants”
If the definition of a knife is a sharp piece of steel and an handle, these both models are pure knives.
I mean its a simple concept but simple ideas are the “highest” ideas.
Created in 1974 by Mr. Henry Baer, to be a skinner, this knife is now a Classic amongst the Classics. (what will be in 25 years all these tactical models of today ?).
But who cares about a $30.00 knife ($19.95 at Walmart…)?
The main difference between both models is:
The Sharpfinger is 1095 Carbon Steel and the Wolferine is Schrade Plus (440A stainless steel).
The 3.5″ is curved like a bear claw with sharpened back (the back of the claw not of the bear !)
This is unique design has been used by many other brand factory.
The handle is bowed and the ricasso forms a finger stop and prevents the hand to slip on the blade.
On the back of the blade there is a place for the thumb.
The handle is thin on the side of the blade and thick at the butt: the grip is secured and confortable.
The great control of the blade makes the 152’s an real extension of your hand. Like a sharp finger in fact.
The handle is made of plastic. It’s very confortable for hard uses.
There is a lanyard hole. And that’s an important detail !
The shape of the blade is really polyvalent and not striclky confine in capping and skinning purposes.
You can eat with it, cook with it, work on wood, clean fish etc etc…
The blade is flat grounded on both sides for a better resistance and incredible polyvalence.
To resharp the blade is really a piece of cake with both steels. Dulling the blade is not so easy as the blade got an excellent edge holding.
As far as we are concern, we really appreciate that knife because it’s a utilitary knife and the all around fixed blade archetype.
In his book ” Knives, Knife Fighting and Related Hassles”, Marc “Animal” Macyoung shows his Sharpfinger as his utility knife and main self defense blade.
You can be shocked by this concept but it’s true.
It’s a small knife with gutts but let’s be clear, Marc and my friends strongest cuts are made in Pizzas or Quiche ! We don’t remove sentries everyday and we try to avoid gang war.
But anyway for a low price you got a low profile self defense and utility blade.
Light sharp with good balance, this is all about.
Back In 1974, they was no tactical fashion. The prime design of the Sharpfinger was surely not self defense but as a very well made tool, you can turn it as a very well made weapon.
For example the Machette is made as an agricultural tool but in a lot of countries it is the poorman sword.
There is no shame as turning a good utility knife into a good self defense knife.
Compared to all the “tactical” knives hype around, it’s strange why the152 and many classical designs are ignored by TK afficionados. Cheap doesn’t mean crap.
(Imagine a 152 with g-10 handle and kydex sheath, and with its blade bead blasted…enough tactical for you ?)
Don’t forget the “tactical knife” is the knife you got in your hand and the right moment…
Marc said to us:
“Be warned, the purist get real unnerved when you use a “fighting knife” as a tool. I beat the hell out of my knives. They look at them and say (in horrified tones) “What have you been doing with this knife ?”
That’s why bladesmiths consider me such a savage.
I got over that the day that I climbed a cliff and halfway up I discovered it turned to shale. I ended up hacking new hands holds with my knife and moving up a foot at a time. I don’t care how much that knife cost, it was either ruin it or fall.
The Schrade 152 is one of the few knives I haven’t been able to break despite seriously abusing it.”
Judicious Marc Macyoung. His books are a kind of “checkpoint” for anyone interested in self defense.
A “must know” .
The sheath of 152 is made of genuine leather. It’s old fashioned but nice “a la” scout.
Great for the price.
By the way, if you lose yourself in the jungle of your supermarket, take a look at that Schrade knives.
You will perharps notice one of that original 152 and perharps, again, you will adopt it. Definitively.
The 152 ?
A Real utility knife.
Fred Perrin & Nemo
“Yasuki Hagane steel has been produced in their plant in Shimane prefecture in Japan where the high quality iron sand has been produced for making traditional Japanese swords since ancient times. These are three main premium grade high carbon steels (Shirogami, Aogami and Aogami Super) that have been used for making Japanese made field & kitchen knives. Hitachi metal is also known as the manufacture of high grade premium stainless steel, ATS-34 and ZDP-189.Blue Steel is made by adding chromium and tungsten to Shirogami (White Steel) that makes the material more durable and provides corrosion resistance and mostly used for making high-grade Hocho (kitchen knives) and outdoor knives.
Now Super Blue Steel is made by adding chromium and tungsten to Shirogami (White Steel) that makes the material more durable and provides corrosion resistance and mostly used for making high-grade Hocho (kitchen knives) and outdoor knives.”
I’ve never been interested in the Calypso. Call me names but the lock was “old”. Not the smoothest operating tool… as all lockbaks.
But the Calypso and all its offsprings got a common feature: ergonomy. A thin blade (not wide for a Spyderco after all) in a light and pointy package.
The years (decade) go by. The Caly 1.5 turns into a test platform for the Aogami Super with a first Sprint Run. I was very excited when Jur has shown me that absolutely beautiful folder. But alas to much vertical play for me and that, made me step back.
This is the problem with all back locks but with my Caracara chinese made G10 first generation. I remember falling in love with the first XL Cold Steel Clip Point Voyager… vertical Play. Massad Ayoob first Spyderco folder… vertical play. The Mighty Chinook , first and second generation ? Vertical play.
Oh you can live with that.
But I do not like a tool which got moving parts in the palm of my hand when I’m cutting something hard.
The Caly3 in Super Blue Steel got vertical play but much less than the Caly 3.5 I had tested.
Now the Cold Steel Triadlock is curing that “disease”. That’s why they are so pleasant to use and so reliable to chocks like Fred Perrin has shown us by throwing his mini Lawman repetitively (more than a 1000 throws!) without any failure or even any vertical play.
Vertical Play is a curse. I remember Michael Janich’s “Street Steel” book explaining why to go away from any lateral or vertical play in a folder knife. And I believe every single words Mr Janich is writing. Common sense is more precious than adamantium nowadays.
Ok my Caly3 vertical play is minor. And on a short knife with ergos like a boot knife this is not a major problem. I mean if the lock should ever fail (and that vertical play on locks has been noticed on very very strong backlocks) my precious fingers would be protected by the quillons on the blade: when you are holding a Spyderco folding knife, you are holding it mostly by the blade. Giving all strength and all structure stress directly to the blade not “through” a fragile channel: the pivoting handle. The C36 Military was the first to offer that “boot knife” feature. Holding the knife by the blade is something as ancient as the Roman folding knives you can find in archaeological fields. In the ancient times, the handle was considered merely as a sheath not something to hold your tool… So folding knives were used as hand razor: by holding the blade.
So about the Caly3, this means that I don’t “feel” any important play when I cut on a board for example. This is mandatory for me to trust a folding knife and sticking to short fixed blade for EDC (as you perharps know I love short fixed blade, Ian Grenier’ FIne Urban Cancelled Knife, Fred Perrin’s Lagriffe, my Izulas, My Newt Livesay NRG, my wonderful Fred Perrin / Spyderco Streetbeat and my great BRKT Bravo1… (chich is not that small after all).
Ok, the Caly is sheeple friendly. It got a thin, short, not threatening blade and this Sprint Run got also a grey G10 handle and a stainless steel back spacer. It doesn’t scream “TACTICAL KNIFE!!!” like the mighty Cold Steel Recon 1 XL CLip Point… So I can use it in the plate in a restaurant. nobody notice it and it makes the difference as a matter separator.
The Caly3 clip is the wire clip and this is the masterpiece in the clipping design industry. I got the same of my Sages, my Techno, my Slipits, my Pingo, my Dodo, my Chaparral and they are simply the best. Nothing can get close to it. It may look cheap. But they are the best in low profile, and ease of pocketing. (Let me hammer that the clip of the Southard being the worth of all Spyderco’s clip ever made IMHO.)
The Sprint Run of C113 got a non stainless steel blade. This is something to experiment. I love my 1075 and 1095 and my M2 blades to get stain. A patina is a must IMHO. It gives character and low profile to a bad reputation tool. I first enjoy patina on my 1095 Schrade Sharpfinger almost 20 years ago… The blade feels “natural” to react to oxygen and acids… It gives “beautility” to a very personnal tool.
Now the Grey G10 gives also some kind of beautility to the Caly 3. Mine is dirty and I love it that way.I got Fifty shades of grey… (and with the Games of Thrones fans I should score…)
So what to not love in the Caly3 ?
Even closed that folder featuring Sal signature is radiating honesty and confidence. I remember reading an article about a man saving his baby boy from a mountain lion attack with a Spyderco Caly 1.5 knife. This means confidence in your tool.
My Caly3 is reliable. I can trust it when I need it to cut deep and fast. And I can trust it to get stains in warp speed too. No surprise there. Like an Opinel in carbon steel you know how to clean and oil it to keep it far from rust.
The Caly is pointy. Much more than a Techno. It got almost more edge length than a Native.
Ho, there is something I love: the bulging pivot screw on this sprint run. The pivot screws is falling perfectly under your thumb when cutting horizontally. About ergos the knife is held in full grip like a much bigger knife. On the handle, there is place for four fingers even without involving the choil.
The Caly3 is not a all screw construction and …. I don’t mind. I got no plan to dismount it. I have cleaned it by rinsing it under hot water tap.
It so far so good.
Now about Super Blue. I have re-profiled the blade as I was expecting much better sharpness. no the edge is thin and convexed but still… I got a much better sharpness feeling with my AUS8A blades (Cold Steel Voyagers, Recon1 and Code4) or the CPMS3V on my BRKT Bravo 1…. I need more mileage on Super Blue Steel to crown it. So far it could be 1075, I don’t feel the difference.
So guess what ?
More on patina and old timer steel in the 52100 serie…