DescriptionSPFB41GP: FB41GP Darn DaoSpyderco
The late Bob Lum was a legend in the knifemaking world. In addition to his consummate skills as a custom knifemaker, Lum had the uncanny ability to translate traditional Asian cutting tools and edged weapons into modern form. Best known as the true father of the "Americanized tanto"—one of the most popular blade shapes of all time—Lum was also instrumental in helping knife enthusiasts to understand and appreciate the deep historical significance of Asian blade patterns.
One of Lum's rarest custom designs was his homage to the classical dan dao—or "single knife" of the Chinese martial arts. In Chinese culture, anything with a single cutting edge is regarded as a knife—regardless of the length of the blade. This is in contrast to a sword, which they regard as a double-edged weapon. The dan dao—or as Lum preferred to Romanize it—Darn Dao—was one of the primary weapons of the Chinese martial arts and typically had a broad blade about two feet long, a substantial disk-shaped guard, and a flared pommel. Designed primarily for swift, powerful cutting and chopping tactics, it was also a highly effective thrusting weapon.
Spyderco founder Sal Glesser was one of the few people fortunate enough to purchase one of Lum's handmade Darn Dao. Although Glesser had long wanted to make a production version of the knife, the skills and technology of the knife industry had not evolved to the point that they could do this extremely special design justice. As the capabilities of Spyderco's best-in-class manufacturing partners steadily improved, they felt the time had finally come to make it a reality.
Spyderco's expression of Lum's Darn Dao is expertly full-flat ground from thick CPM-154—a state-of-the-art powder metallurgy stainless steel that offers increased toughness over the conventional ingot version of this alloy. Its long, unsharpened swedge ensures an acute point, while its tapered full tang reduces the knife's weight and gives it extraordinary balance. Contoured black G10 scales, an integral twin guard, and a flared pommel ensure a positive grip during high-speed manipulation. A generously sized lined hole offers further insurance, allowing the easy attachment of a lanyard or safety cord.
Every Darn Dao comes complete with a high-quality zippered storage pouch and a handsome leather sheath with an integral loop for belt carry. The sheath's open-backed construction and thumb-break-style snap ensure positive retention, while still allowing a swift draw.
In addition to its other amazing qualities, the Darn Dao also holds a special place in Spyderco's history as their second "Flash Batch" product. A Flash Batch is similar to a Sprint Run in that is it a truly distinctive, one-time-only event. However, whereas Sprint Runs are based on current or previously produced models, Flash Batches introduce a brand new design that will never be duplicated in the exact same form again. To make them even more unique and collectible, Flash Batches are individually serialized with a laser-engraved number on every blade.