Pros: Blade Sharpness, Lock Type, Handle Material, Overall Quality, Pocket Clip, Ease of Opening, Handle Feel, Weight, Lock Ease of Use, Blade Material
The 950 is my new EDC and is my favorite standard-issue Benchmade. I use it for everyday chores and for martial arts practice. In photos, the Rift seems like a bruiser, but its profile is much slimmer than I expected: the Rift slips into my pocket comfortably and discreetly. The handle has a reassuring heft to it because the liners are not skeletonized, but this is a good thing: the knife balances perfectly on the forefinger (normal grip). The cutout on the handle nicely fits the pinky (normal grip) or index finger (reverse grip) and increases cutting/slashing efficiency. The G-10 scale texture is great; grippy where it needs to be but smooth where pants and pocket clip meet. I will probably round off the G-10 edges, which are, as others have noted, a bit sharp. The black-and-gray wood grain pattern is beautiful. I love the reverse tanto and high saber grind. I usually prefer leaf blades with FFGs, but I like the 950's all-round appeal: the Rift wants to cut like a full flat grind, pierce like a clip point, and retain tip strength like a regular tanto. And its 154cm is probably my favorite stainless steel: it's a great all-rounder, much as the Rift's blade is a great all-around shape. Though the Rift does not have a true choil like most Spydercos do, choking up on the 950 is still pretty easy. My thumb fits nicely on the spine ramp. My forefinger rests comfortably and securely on the flared finger guard. The only thing I wish I'd known before buying the 950 is how much I'd love it. I would've bought the knife several years ago, when it first caught my eye, rather than wait so long.