Profile for A photographer > Reviews


A photographer's Profile

Customer Reviews: 343
Top Reviewer Ranking: 2,626
Helpful Votes: 2734

Community Features
Review Discussion Boards
Top Reviewers

Guidelines: Learn more about the ins and outs of Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
A photographer RSS Feed (Planet Earth)

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20
Spyderco Manix2 Translucent Blue FRCP PlainEdge Knife
Spyderco Manix2 Translucent Blue FRCP PlainEdge Knife
Offered by Outfitter Country
Price: $74.95
8 used & new from $74.95

4.0 out of 5 stars Looks like a toy but performs quite well, October 26, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I own one of the original Manix models from the early part of the century. It is a great knife, tough and sturdy and it is made so strong it probably would last the normal user a couple of lifetimes. It's heavy but the heavy is in the right places for a hard use knife. It has one fault that is shared with the Manix 2 models--a wide profile that takes up a lot of room in the user's pocket when clipped inside. This width is not so much a limitation in the Manix 2 but it is enough to still be noticeable and sometimes infuriating. The Manix 2 Translucent Blue model doesn't fit in the knife pockets of my Tru-Spec cargo pants due to its width. It does fit in the side pockets of every pair of pants I own but it gets in the way of accessing other items in the same pocket. You have to figure out a comfortable place to carry this knife. For me, it's most often in my back pocket. Unfortunately, it uses the Spyderco wire pocket clip--a device I do not like. But for some reason, the wire clip seems better suited to the Manix 2 Lightweight than the other Spydercos I own that came with the same clip design. Go figure.

Unlike the original Manix, the Manix 2 Lightweight doesn't weigh a lot. It has no liner and the handle material is a copolymer that seems very strong yet feathery light in weight. The Translucent Blue model is...well, translucent and blue. Light shows through it at certain angles and it looks really nice. It sorta reminds me of the plastic water pistols we used as kids that came in various translucent colors. The difference is the plastic in the Manix 2 is tough whereas the plastic in those water pistols was cheap and brittle and fell apart easily. I like the way the knife looks and I love the light weight. It also feels comfortable in my hand, like all Spydercos of my acquaintance. Despite my gripes about the wide profile in the pocket and the wire clip, I carry this knife more than I thought I would.

The blade steel is BD-1. It's nothing knife knuts get excited over but it seems to work well in this knife. I keep my knives clean so they don't often get corroded and I sharpen them often so they stay sharp. Needless to say, I have no problems cutting stuff with this knife. The Manix 2 also has a locking system akin to the famous Benchmade Axis Lock although reportedly it is stronger. I have a couple of Benchmade knives with Axis locks and I like them and I've never noticed them being delicate. The Manix 2 lock is a little stiffer than the Axis locks I've used but, again, I have no problem utilizing the knife.

Overall, I like this knife more than I thought I would. It's not my favorite Spyderco but it ranks pretty high on the list of those models I've owned. It's lightweight, can be easily sharpened, feels ergonomic and, despite reminding me of the toy plastic water pistols I played with as a kid, it seems tough enough to handle most cutting tasks.

Spyderco Double 1 x 5 x 1/4 Stuff Fine/Medium Stone with Pouch
Spyderco Double 1 x 5 x 1/4 Stuff Fine/Medium Stone with Pouch
Price: $26.98
41 used & new from $26.98

5.0 out of 5 stars A portable, handy and useful sharpening stone, September 18, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I really like this. I use a Spyderco Sharpmaker for most routine sharpening, sometimes DMT diamond bench stones for reprofiling a blade. But I sometimes just want to sit down and leisurely sharpen a knife while watching TV or listening to music and the Sharpmaker and bench stones aren't really geared to this type of sharpening. Enter the Double Stuff. It's a Spyderco medium ceramic stone and a fine ceramic stone glued together and stored in a suede leather pouch (I've read that the pouches vary, some being soft suede while some are standard leather). Being 5" in length, it's long enough to hold in your hand while using. I've sharpened up to 4" blades easily. Probably not the best choice for your 16" machete, but it's fine for a large folding knife.

It works great as long as you know how to free hand sharpen. Cleaning is a breeze, just like the Spyderco Sharpmaker ceramic rods. Any abrasive cleaner like Comet or Bar Keeper's Friend will work. It helps to use a Scotchbright pad. Sprinkle it on the pad, scrub lightly, rinse off and towel dry. You can also just wipe off the metal residue with a dry tissue or cloth while sharpening to extend time between cleanings. The stone is small enough to carry in a large pocket or pack for touch ups while in the field. It doesn't take the place of a sharpening system or bench stones but it's a convenient and handy addition for anyone who can free hand sharpen.

Classic Enlan EL-01A Bee EL-01A Folding Knife G10 Handle One Hand Open Camping Tool Gift
Classic Enlan EL-01A Bee EL-01A Folding Knife G10 Handle One Hand Open Camping Tool Gift
Offered by Decent Solution
Price: $18.95

4.0 out of 5 stars A solid bargain that should not be overlooked, September 18, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
You can make a good knife in China. Several cutlery companies are having it done today very successfully. But building one this good, this large and heavily constructed, and selling it for less than 20 bucks is a real trick.

I've managed to acquire a pretty decent collection of quality cutlery over several decades. Most of the best known brands are represented from Al Mar to Zero Tolerance. I guess I was a knife snob for years because I wouldn't buy anything out of China. But in recent years my attitude has changed. Knives like this are what changed it.

The EL-01A is a fairly large knife that is heavy and thick. The blade is over 3.5" in length and the blade is rather thick. Steel is 8CR13MoV, a standard good quality Chinese steel. It appears to have one bronze or brass washer on one side and one nylon washer one the other side in the blade pivot, an odd but effective design. The grip panels are G10, an excellent material for handling and durability. Design is of the "flow through" type with the pocket clip made for tip up only. The steel liner is massive and the locking bar is too which inspires confidence in its ability to keep the knife locked in the open position. The whole knife balances well with the weight in the user's hand which keeps the blade light and responsive. All these are good features, in my opinion. I did notice one of the pocket clip screws was not seated fully and appeared to be a little tilted to one side. Using a T6 driver, it was very tight to back out a little bit to then get seated properly. But the screw did seat fully and tightly. This was the only indication of any compromise in assembly I could find.

There's not a lot to dislike about this knife but I did find a couple of things. First, mine was not very sharp on arrival. Not dull by any means and it was sharp enough for some people to think, "Oh, boy, this is sharp!" But it was nowhere near sharp enough for me. When I finally got a chance to spend some time with the knife, I decided to use a Spyderco combination ceramic pocket stone. The 8Cr steel didn't require much work. It took a good edge fairly quickly and, once stropped about 20 passes per side on a leather strop block, this knife became extremely sharp. The 8Cr steel is not known for holding an edge well during heavy use but it does take a great edge easily.

The only other complaint I have about this knife is the method of deployment of the blade. It only has a flipper--no thumb stud or other opening method. That means that unless you're one of those people who like to flick your knife open with wrist action, opening it can be frustrating. I don't like flicking, flipping or snapping open my knives. With other flipper type knives I've owned, they also include a thumb stud that comes in handy. I just push the flipper to get the blade to release and use the stud to move it into the locked position. With the EL-01A, you either have to snap the knife open with the flipper and wrist action or use your other hand to finish deploying the blade. For me, this is essentially a two hand opening knife. This is, of course, my personal preference and it may have no bearing on anyone else's use.

There are also a couple of other potential issues that should be noted. First the pivot adjustment is proprietary and there's no tool available for the adjustment. I've read that a drill chuck can be adjusted to fit the three-prong raised star. If so, that's a solution should adjustment become necessary. The other is the blade tang at the pivot point. There doesn't look like a lot of blade tang metal there, leaving this stress point a bit thin for such an otherwise overbuilt knife. I haven't read of any epidemic of these knives breaking at the pivot so maybe I'm just trying to find something to complain about.

Overall, this is a solidly built and high quality knife for very little cash output. In the end, it may not be as strong as a ZT or my beloved Spyderco Gayle Bradley but it's a fraction of the price of these knives and a true bargain by anyone's standards.

Travelpro Luggage Crew 9 Rolling Tote Bag, Black, One Size
Travelpro Luggage Crew 9 Rolling Tote Bag, Black, One Size
Price: $152.99
4 used & new from $97.73

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great option for a smaller than normal carry on bag, September 11, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I bought one of these for my wife and I to use as a single carry on bag for a 5-day trip. It was used in conjunction with a Travelpro Crew 9 24" checked bag. The combination worked perfectly for us with the Tote handling enough emergency clothing (just in case the checked bag was delayed) as well as medications, Kindles, 2-DSLR cameras with attached lenses, an extra lens in a padded pouch, chargers, extra batteries and a lot of small "stuff". It fit under the seat of American Eagle commuter jets and MD-80s and was easy enough to access while in flight. Although the telescoping handle feels sort of flimsy when extended all the way, it functioned perfectly. The case rolled smoothly over various airport interior surfaces and parking lots. The main compartment can be opened fully for packing/unpacking and has side gussets with snaps and Velcro strips to allow partial opening without spilling the contents while on the go. It has an egg crate padded sleeve that held a Kindle 8.9" Fire HD safely. Nice touches include two outside pockets, the smaller with two inner pockets and sleeves for writing instruments and the larger held papers, airport maps and boarding passes. The only minor annoyance was how the framework for the telescoping handle took up space in the main compartment. This was not an issue, however, because clothing items could be folded to fit around the framework and used to further pad the camera gear. Considering how mounting the handle on the exterior would increase the overall depth of the bag, I accept the internal framework as the best compromise.

I'm not a frequent flyer so I can't predict how well this bag will handle regular travel but it fit my requirements perfectly for a smaller than normal carry on bag.

Dove Season (A Jimmy Veeder Fiasco)
Dove Season (A Jimmy Veeder Fiasco)
Price: $3.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Vapid, immature, inane and essentially stupid, August 22, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I read 50% of this book and called it quits. By that point, the main plot should have been in development but the 50% point was about where the plot started. Prior to that, it was a sometimes entertaining but mostly tedious progression of inane adolescent irresponsibility and outright ethical degradation. I wasn't expecting great literature here but this sorry representation of human depravity and lack of moral compass finally wore me out. This loser of a book will appeal to those immature individuals who like bathroom humor and pointless obscenity. The saving grace was that the eBook was cheap but I kick myself for buying both this book and its follow up at the same time based on reader reviews. I can only say those readers must like their literature written on the walls of public toilets.

I cannot say I hate this POS. It's so bad it doesn't even elicit any emotion. Just a total waste of time.

Spyderco Diamond Triangle Pair
Spyderco Diamond Triangle Pair
Price: $43.96
39 used & new from $27.50

5.0 out of 5 stars These are essential for reprofiling and thinning the edges of knives, August 20, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
If you have the Sharpmaker and you ever run into the task of having to reprofile a blade, you really should consider these diamond rods. They make for much faster work than the medium grit rods and they are easier than freehanding on a diamond benchstone. As noted, you should not put a lot of pressure on the diamond rods and expect them to wear in for the first few times you use them. Once worn in, the diamonds cut the metal cleanly and fairly quickly.

I have several older knives as well as some newer knives that needed the edges thinned and reprofiled. The Spyderco diamond rods, while not magical, made the jobs fairly simple as long as I was persistent and maintained the blade on a vertical plane. A little extra time was needed near the points of the knives but that's to be expected. Once complete, a run through with the medium and fine rods at 30 degrees and a finish with the fine and ultra fine rods at 40 degrees made for a super sharp edge. Finally a good stropping with green compound on leather polished the edges mirror bright. This is an edge better than what the factory grind.

You can do a decent job with the Sharpmaker with only the medium and fine ceramic rods. But I have found the diamond and ultra fine rods are essential to getting the best and sharpest edges on my knives.

Spyderco PINGO Slip It Plain Edge Knife, Black
Spyderco PINGO Slip It Plain Edge Knife, Black
Price: $43.81
45 used & new from $37.37

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More design than function but very appealing, August 19, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Interesting little knife. It's not very Spyderco-like but I like the design. The shape is "different" but the ergonomics are better than one would think considering the odd shape. The tang area is jimped and serves as a bit of a choil so you can get a decent grip on the short handle. The curved blade is something of a modified sheepsfoot (the traditional sheepsfoot blade has a straight edge and this knife definitely does NOT have a straight cutting edge). An almost-traditional Spyderco feature includes a tiny blade hole that does not serve as a means of opening the knife. This is a two-hand knife, to meet Danish laws. The blade is non-locking. This is a slipjoint knife but, given the Spyderco touch, the blade has very firm detents at the halfway and fully open positions. It's unlikely any responsible adult will use this knife in such a way as to cause the blade to close accidentally.

The place of manufacture is Maniago, Italy. This is the first Spyderco I've bought that wasn't made either in the USA or Asia. Fit and finish are excellent, as is the standard for Spyderco knives. The handle is unlined FRN with a checkered pattern and a molded Spyderco spider design. It's grippy although the shape takes some getting used to. The blade steel is N690. I'm not familiar with this steel but it seems to do its job well. The knife wasn't really that sharp on arrival but a Sharpmaker brought a fine edge up fairly quickly. This is not a heavy duty knife so I can't foresee any problems with edge-holding nor did I find any issues with its ability to be sharpened.

This is a quirky little knife, more design-driven than all function and ergonomics like the usual Spyderco. It's not as ergonomic as the Dragonfly 2 which serves the same function and size range. It lacks a lock and a one-hand opening Spyder hole. I like it but my like is based on the design more than the functionality. Overall, I give it 3.5 stars. If you're looking for a knife that has these features and like the design, it should serve you well.

Spyderco Dragonfly G-10 Plain Edge Knife, Foliage Green
Spyderco Dragonfly G-10 Plain Edge Knife, Foliage Green
Price: $95.23
16 used & new from $95.21

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Deluxe Dragonfly, August 16, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I'm a convert to smaller pocket knives and the Dragonfly hit my radar recently. For a small knife, the DF manages to fit my large hand well. The models with the unlined FRN handle are very light in weight and just disappear in you pocket. But the G10 model is a step up. I like how it adds a more substantial feel to the little knife. I like the grainy texture of G10 and I like the steel liner. Is it worth the extra cost over the model with the FRN handle? The customer has to decide for himself. In my opinion, it is for me.

Is there anything to dislike about the knife? For my use, the pocket clip is extraneous. I removed the clip and I just carry the knife deep in my pocket where it feels nice and secure but no more intrusive than the lighter FRN model. It's also a little too small for my aging fingers to always manipulate one-hand opening. No matter, I'm not about to whip it out and flick the blade open to impress anyone or fend off an attack of raging pit bulls or invading hoards of Russian troops. This is a small utility pocket knife and I use it accordingly.

The only fly in the ointment for the individual Dragonfly G10 I received was the edge grind was not symmetrical or smooth and it simply wasn't as sharp as the usual Spyderco. This is not a major issue for me because I know how to reprofile and sharpen knives and I don't mind doing it. I simply used the Spyderco Sharpmaker (you really should own this simple device to sharpen all your knives) and went through the whole assembly of stones, from the diamond through the ultrafine and finished with a leather strop and polishing compound. The result is a better edge than you usually get out of the box from any manufacturer. Love the Sharpmaker and I also love the VG-10 steel Spyderco uses in this knife.

Other than the poor edge profile, this was an outstanding knife. I can't give it 5 stars but I do recommend it.

Carhartt Men's Detroit Belt,Brown,44
Carhartt Men's Detroit Belt,Brown,44
Price: $27.86
8 used & new from $26.99

4.0 out of 5 stars It's not brown and it's thinner than the original but it's still okay, August 15, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The belt is nice enough. I have an older one of this same Detroit model and there are differences. The older belt is more tan than brown and the leather is thicker, heavier. The one here is more of an olive color, bordering on gray, instead of brown and the leather is not as thick. In fact, I don't know how it can be called "brown" since it's not really close to that color. Still, I like the color. Being neutral, it will go with anything.

My older belt still has a lot of life left in it even after several years of frequent wear. No fraying, no problems with the seams splitting, etc. It did stretch a bit but not as much as thinner belts I've owned for the same period. The triple rows of stitching probably helped in limiting stretch. Since I always order belts much longer than my waist size to accommodate variations in sizes, a belt that stretches with wear ends up needing more holes punched and having a lot of excess leather. If this belt functions like my original, that's not a concern. But the leather here is a bit thinner than my older belt so only time will tell.

Flexcut Knife Strop
Flexcut Knife Strop
Offered by Hartville Tool
Price: $14.44
11 used & new from $11.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's okay, August 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Flexcut Knife Strop (Misc.)
I didn't use the included compound. Instead I used some green polishing compound of the type I normally use on my knife strops. The leather used here is not consistent in texture and not of very good quality. It works okay but it doesn't take compound easily. When stropping, the knife kind of bumps along.

It works okay and it's cheap. There are better strop blocks available if you shop around.

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20