All Aboard The Bullet Train
Spyderco Teams Up With Butch Vallotton For A Real Winner
My eyes opened wide when I was handed the Spyderco Vallotton Sub-Hilt folder at the 2011 Blade Show. Then a smile came over my face. Really slick knives have a way of doing that. Spyderco Marketing Director Joyce Laituri informed me, “We’d been wanting to collaborate with Butch Vallotton for years and finally got the chance.” It was well worth the wait.
Knifemaker Butch Vallotton is highly respected in custom circles and known for making some of the best automatics around. His Sub-Hilt handle design is an Italian-inspired bullet train in the hand. Stretching to 8.7″ fully unwound, the folder sports a sleek 3.75″ modified tanto cutting torch. For the blade, Spyderco chose top shelf CPM S30V stainless, a proprietary-powdered steel made by Crucible Industries especially for the cutlery market. The blade is hollow ground along the lead edge and switches to a convex grind at the tip. The humped Spydie-hole in the blade not only makes for easy opening, it ingeniously serves as the blade stop.
The handle, which incorporates a sturdy Michael Walker style liner lock, is substantial in weight with the entire package weighing in at 6.2 ounces. A versatile pocket clip allows positioning for tip-up or tip-down and right or left hand carry. The diagonally placed stainless steel “stripe” that crosses the handle terminating at the sub-hilt apex is a nice styling touch and the fit and finish of the entire handle is impeccable. Close your eyes, hold this knife in your hand, and you’d think you were holding a high dollar custom.
The price of admission for such finery isn’t cheap. At $299.95 suggested retail, the Vallotton Sub-Hilt tips the higher end of production knives but, as is common in purchasing a knife, a little bit of shopping around will put a smile on your face. The effort put forth will be worth it as this is one of those exceptional production knives that distances itself from the pack in spades.
Vallotton Sub-Hilt Maker: Spyderco, Inc.
820 Spyderco Way, Golden, CO 80403
CPM S30V, Blade length: 3.75″
Overall length: 8.7″
Weight: 6.2 ounces
Handle: G10, stainless bolster
Carry: Pocket clip