Byrd BY20 Wings
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- Last updated: 13/12/2016
One of Spyderco’s smarter moves in the last few years was to create a parallel brand called Byrd Knives. Made in China at factories selected for their quality and ability, the Byrd range is unmistakably inspired by the big S, but also highly individual too. Also, despite what appear to be ridiculously low prices, the materials used and general package stands up well to both close scrutiny and hard work.
I use a number of Byrd folders but was given their latest model at this year’s IWA Show. Called the BY20 Wings, it’s similar to the old Spyderco Dyad in that it’s a double bladed design offering the choice of plain and fully scalloped (SpyderEdge) edges, with each folding out from either end of the ambidextrous handle.
Whereas, most Dyads where quite small the Wings offers what I would term as a proper, hand-filling size and heft. The build goes for an open steel chassis, so any debris will fall through rather than build up inside. Scales are textured, black G10 synthetic and locking is by individual liners, as opposed to the double lock back arrangement of the Dyad.
Blades are made from 8Cr13MoV stainless and offer a length of 3 3/8th” each. One is a sheep's foot design with a rounded nose and fully scalloped edge, the other a hollow ground clip point. Typical of Byrd and also distinctive is the teardrop shaped opening hole in the hump. At the rear of this is jimping to give added thumb purchase if required when more pressure needs to be exerted.
At the base/end of each blade is more jimping, which is applied to a small choil section so you can choke up your grip if you want to. Both liner locks also show this cross-slotted finish, which gives a bit more to get your thumb on when operating the locks. Naturally all this is duplicated at the other end and the BY20 is a true ambidextrous design in every respect.
Four Way Carry
Weighing in at a reasonably hefty 5.4oz (for its size) the BY20 also features a clothing clip, which can be positioned four ways to give a tip up/tip down carry given the blade you favour most and its deployment. A black nylon belt pouch is also included in the package.
In use the BY20 Wings proved an excellent field folder for my needs. Of what I would term as a ‘sensible size’ the blades are long enough to tackle any serious job and the sheep’s foot/scalloped edge allows safe and quick cutting in problem areas. The fall-through design means little crud build up in the handle or locking surfaces and the G10 scales do provide a sure grip even when bloody. Deploying and stowing the blades is fast and easy even when using one hand, likewise so is switching the knife around in your hand.
Not a lot to complain about really, in fact nothing at all. If I had to describe the Byrd YB20 Wings I’d have to say a little unusual, but 200% practical.
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