In simple terms, the Shaman’s hand-filling, no-nonsense design is Spyderco’s best-selling Native model—on steroids. Originally released in 1997, the Native blazed a trail as an affordable, extremely ergonomic, lightweight folder. It was also instrumental in introducing Spyderco’s patented reversible pocket clip, which was a revolutionary feature for its time. Although stainless steel and carbon fiber versions were briefly produced in Japan, the Native Lightweight distinguished itself as a flagship of Spyderco’s American-made product line, offering superior quality and made-in-USA craftsmanship at an extremely affordable price.
In the years since then, the Native has steadily evolved through five generations and spawned a wide range of variations, including a number of models specifically geared toward the needs of military, law enforcement, and tactical users. With countless thousands of Natives in daily use around the globe, it’s not surprising that Spyderco gets a lot of feedback from their owners. And one of the most common requests they get—especially from duty-bound end users—is for a larger, beefier expression of the same basic design. The Shaman is Spyderco’s response to that demand.
At 8.25-inches overall, the Shaman is about 20 percent larger than the Native, making it ideal for folks with larger hands and those who need or prefer a bigger blade. Its design offers the same refined ergonomics and proven qualities of the Native, as well as a few significant differences.
The soul of this impressive design is its CPM S30V stainless steel blade, which features a very high saber (partial flat) grind and a prominent swedge (unsharpened back bevel). This masterfully executed grind balances strength, low-friction edge geometry, and an acute, utilitarian point to offer a blade that will eagerly tackle almost any cutting chore. The blade’s signature Trademark Round Hole is fully accessible from both sides to support swift, one-handed opening with either hand. It features a handsome low-maintenance stonewashed finish. For tactical applications where light discipline is a concern, versions with a non-reflective black Diamond Like Carbon (DLC) coating will also be offered.
Although the Shaman’s handle shape and ergonomics follow the spirit of the Native, its handle construction and lock mechanism are distinctly different. The handle’s scales are 3D machined from G10 and thoughtfully contoured to provide a comfortable, secure grip. Skeletonized stainless steel liners nested within the smooth, matte-finished scales reinforce the handle’s structural strength and form the basis of the knife’s patented Compression Lock. This high-strength mechanism is located in the spine of the handle, where it contacts the web of the thumb during normal use and is well protected from accidental release. Its location also allows the blade to be closed safely and easily with one hand without placing your fingers in the path of the edge. To ensure convenient carry and keep the knife poised for immediate access, the handle includes a stonewashed four-position pocket clip that offers a choice of left or right-side, tip-up or tip-down carry.
The Shaman is a powerhouse cutting tool that is deeply rooted in the success of one of Spyderco’s most iconic designs and the feedback of their loyal customers.