Tips & Tricks
Spyderco’s Sage Series is a family of knives that showcases the innovative lock mechanisms that have helped define modern folding knife technology. Every member of the Sage family shares the same basic design profile and unifying features like a flat-ground, leaf-shaped CPM S30V blade, an ergonomic handle with textured forefinger choil and thumb ramp, and a reversible tip-up wire clip. What makes each of them distinct is its lock mechanism and the details and materials of its handle construction. In addition to diversifying Spyderco’s offering of lock mechanisms, the Sage Series “gives credit where credit is due” by acknowledging the contributions of some of the knife industry’s most innovative makers and designers
The extraordinary knives in the Sage Series also support a worthy cause, as proceeds from the sale of every Sage Series folder are donated to the Alzheimer’s Association, Colorado Chapter
The late Blackie Collins was a legend in the knife industry. As an inventor and designer, his innovations had a tremendous impact on modern knife design and manufacturing methods. The Sage3 recognizes one of his most significant inventions: the Bolt Action Lock. This locking mechanism consists of a spring-loaded steel bolt that wedges between a ramp on the back of the blade tang and the inside of the handle back strap when the blade is opened. Retracting a sliding button attached to the bolt releases the lock, allowing the blade to close safely without the user’s fingers crossing the path of the blade edge.
The Bolt Action Lock was the precursor to many other modern locks that use a ramp on the rear of the tang as the lock engagement surface. When it was originally released in the late 1970’s, it set new standards for its time in strength and ease of use. Spyderco’s expression of the lock in the Sage3 is an improvement of the original design in that it incorporates bilateral lock release buttons for ambidextrous operation. The buttons also include integral shrouds to prevent lint and dirt from entering the lock mechanism.
The first Sage3 was released in 2011 and featured textured blue G-10 handle scales. This year, the blue-handled version is being discontinued and a new version released, featuring black cubic check carbon fiber/G-10 laminate scales. The scales are joined by a solid G-10 back spacer.
Its blade is full-flat ground from CPM S30V stainless, a premium powdered metallurgy stainless steel renowned for its edge retention and corrosion resistance properties. It features Spyderco’s Trademark Round Hole™ for one-handed opening with either hand. When the blade is opened, the Bolt Action Lock mechanism automatically engages to lock it in the open position. Sliding the lock release buttons to the rear disengages the lock, allowing the blade to pivot closed. The pressure from the Bolt Action Lock’s steel bolt also serves as a detent and a self-close mechanism to keep the blade safely closed when carried in the pocket. The Sage3 has a reversible deep-pocket wire clip for left or right-hand, tip up carry. An incredibly refined and functional folder, the Sage3 is a lasting tribute to one of the true pioneers of the modern knife industry
The Sage Series is unique in that it serves a number of different purposes. First and foremost, it diversifies Spyderco’s product line by providing our customers with a wide variety of lock options. Similar to our Mule Team Project, which allows side-by-side comparison of different steels in identical fixed-blade designs, the Sage Series provides a platform for comparing the operation of different locks in the same basic knife design.
Another important objective of the Sage Series is to “give credit where credit is due” by acknowledging the contributions of some of the knife industry’s most innovative makers and designers. All too often, groundbreaking innovations become so commonplace that they are taken for granted. The Sage Series helps correct this by providing a living history of folding knife lock innovations and educating knife users about their origins.
The uniqueness of the Sage concept is also ideal for knife collectors, who often prefer to concentrate on specific themes for their collections. Many Spyderco enthusiasts have purchased all four of the current Sage models and are eagerly anticipating future knives in the series.
What does the future hold for the Sage Series? Well, in addition to continuing to recognize the contributions of other designers, based on popular demand we plan to showcase our own lock innovations, including our patented Compression Lock and Ball Bearing Lock. These locks have definitely stood the test of time and earned their rightful place alongside the other notable mechanisms in the series.
The Sage Series is a unique reflection of the evolution of the modern folding knife and we are extremely proud to be able to share it and the vision behind it with you.