A big thank you to Cutlery Shoppe founder Jeff Loffer for sending us a dealer sample Spyderco Para 3 to examine for this story.


Spyderco customers have been impatiently waiting on the arrival of a certain knife ever since Founder Sal Glesser confirmed that it was in the works.

Since that day in early in 2016, the model has gone through several aliases including the Para Military 3, PM3, and Minuteman. It’s finally about to hit the market as the Para 3. Spyderco says it picked the name to recognize its roots in the Military line and at the same time distinguish it as an EDC. In case the company ever decided to upgrade the Para Military 2, it also leaves room for a ‘Para Military 3’ .

We got to handle an early edition of the knife from behind Spyderco’s prototype case back in January at SHOT Show 2016. That knife was a perfectly scaled down version of the esteemed Para Military 2 – smaller, but identical in every other way. We wanted to love it but something wasn’t quite right.

Imagine taking a car and shrinking EVERYTHING by exactly 15%. Problems arise because space is more scarce and the average occupant is not 15% smaller. To improve on the design, more space would need to be allocated for cabin seating at the expense of lower priorities like trunk space. Many adjustments like this would be necessary to re-optimize the car for the smaller package.

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