There are no losers in today’s matchup, though someone will win when the dust settles. Both companies are incredibly well respected, and among my favorite companies in the industry. This should be an interesting contest in the penultimate matchup in the American – Modern division.
Remember: You can vote twice. Once at this Facebook link, and once in the comment section of the blog.
Hogue is probably best known for their grips and firearm accessories, but they got their start, and still make thousands of other consumer products. Knives are actually a recent addition to their lineup, but they chose to hire award-winning designer Allen Elishewitz to run their knife program. It is a complete coincidence that Allen lives just a half hour away from me, and an even greater coincidence that yesterday was the day I had a chance to meet Allen and spend about 4 hours visiting and interviewing him. More on that later today.
From HogueInc.com‘s “About Us” page:
Welcome to Hogue, Inc., home to a proud family tradition of American quality and innovation since 1968. Every Hogue product – from handgun grips to long gun stocks to AR components to specialty knives to gear and accessories – is built in the spirit of fine craftsmanship, attention to detail and complete dedication to the legacy of founder Guy Hogue, carried into the next generation by his sons Aaron and Patrick, by Hogue Tool & Machine Company president Jim Bruhns, by his grandson Neil, and by each and every employee at Hogue, Inc.
Fit, function, superior performance and world-class design are hallmarks of the Hogue name. When you purchase a Hogue product you’re carrying a piece of our family history, designed from the ground up to enhance and improve your sporting experience. Our brightest ideas, the finest materials and the world’s best manufacturing practices are united under the Hogue name, under the direct supervision of the best and brightest people we can find to carry the Hogue legacy. We’re proud to be the first choice of law enforcement, handgun manufacturers, competitive shooters and firearm enthusiasts worldwide for products that reflect our passion, our proud history and our commitment to bringing you a full range of products designed and manufactured to enhance your sporting experience for years to come.
We have only done one review of a Hogue knife, the EX-03 Tanto, though I hope to add to this soon.
We have a bunch of Hogue tagged content, most notably our post on their falling prey to the Obama administration’s Operation Choke point, where because they “manufacture weapons” they were denied banking services by Wells Fargo – the only knife company that this has happened to to my knowledge.
Spyderco is one of those companies whose name reaches beyond enthusiasts and to emcomass almost the entirety of knife users. I don’t remember their complete methodology, but when our friends at Knifenews did their big survey of top brands, Spyderco blew everyone else out of the water in terms of consumer awareness, with only Benchmade and Kershaw coming anywhere close. The rest of the field got lapped.
They say the plural of anecdote is data, so I will provide the anecdote. I started on SAKs in Scouts, was certainly aware of classic Buck and Case knives, but that was about it. I became aware of Spyderco sometime in Jr. High, and saved up my camp-staff money and bought my first Endura in High School. I carried it clipped to my pocket every day at school. In college I bought a Rescue and carried it as a Firefighter/EMT. I bought a Native when I was working at Newman Outfitters, a local REI-type establishment. It wasn’t until that point that I first heard of a Benchmade.
I lost my original Native, and replaced it with an S30V version. I got my Tenacious when I joined Knife Rights, and I plan on someday buying a Paramilitary 2. So as you can see I have a long history with the company.
Which leads me to company history.
Spyderco was founded in 1976 by Sal and Gail Glesser. Initially, the company focused on selling our first product—the Tri-Angle Sharpmaker™—primarily at fairs and trade shows around the country.
In 1981, the Glessers put down roots in Golden, Colorado and introduced the first Spyderco folding knife. That knife pioneered the concept of a round hole in the blade for one-handed opening, a clip on the handle for carry at the top of the pocket, and the option of a serrated edge for aggressive cutting performance. Those features revolutionized the knife industry and literally defined the form of the modern folding knife.
Since then, Spyderco has steadily grown to become one of the leaders in the cutlery industry. In addition to a worldwide distribution network and manufacturing resources in the U.S., Japan, Taiwan, Italy, and China, our innovation has also earned us an impressive portfolio of patents, trademarks, and industry awards. More importantly, it has allowed us to earn the trust and loyalty of countless thousands of dedicated knife users around the world—an audience to whom we are extremely grateful.
I actually had a chance to interview Sal Glesser at the 2015 Blade Show, but the quality of the audio was not of sufficient to run the video on the site. If someone has experience cleaning/enhancing audio please contact me at email@example.com. I hope to someday be able to use it, because Sal is an interesting man and an industry legend.
You can see the rest of our extensive archive of Spyderco content here.
Good luck to today’s competitors.
Yesterday’s match between Microtech and TOPS was a blowout upset. #8 TOPS beat the pants off #1 Microtech 49-4. This was certainly influenced by TOPS sharing our post on their Facebook page, which opened the floodgates and led them to victory.
Of course the seedings are completely random within each division, and all is fair in love, war, and TTAK Knife Madness 2017.