Spyderco SpydeRench

The new Spyderench is finally available though its currently not listed on the Spyderco website. It's been a long wait. Spyderco had said they were updating the multi-tool back in 2004. The original Spyderench was introduced in 1999 and discontinued in 2003.

The original Spyderench was manufactured in the US but the new Spyderench is made in Taiwan. Byrd, an economy brand of Spyderco, manufactures a similar multi-tool, the Byrdrench, which is made in China. All three look quite similar aside from cosmetic differences.  See the following table for a summary of the main differences:

Original SpydeRench
New SpydeRench
Country of Manufacture
USA Taiwan China
Blade Edge
Plain/Combo/SpyderEdge Combo Plain/Combo
Blade Steel
440C AUS-8 8Cr13Mov
File Type
Diamond Diamond Rasp

The blade on the SpydeRench is similar in design to the popular Spyderco Delica and like the Delica the SpydeRench is scary sharp. At the time of this review, the SpydeRench was only available with a combo edge but the ByrdRench is available with either a plain edge or a combo edge blade.

The first SpydeRench that I recieved was defective. The blade had some play, especially near the closed position. The wobble would allow the blade to hit the side of the "liner" if I did't close the blade carefully (see photo below).

I sent it back and received a replacement from Spyderco. The replacement has far less blade wobble but there's still a bit of play--mostly near the closed position.

The aptly named SpydeRench is one of the few modern multi-tools to feature an adjustable wrench. Despite it's small size (9/16" capacity), I find that it performs adequately for light work. A handy feature of the SpydeRench is that the wrench can be used with the handle fully extended, providing additional leverage. Also, the wrench and the bit driver may be separted and used independently.

The round nose slip joint pliers are neat but they are less versatile than the needle nose pliers found on most other multi-tools. They're also a bit akward to use.  The spine of the knife blade forms part of one of the handles (not very ergonomic) and the short handles don't provide much leverage.

The magnetic bit driver works ok. The magnet holds the bit in place but isn't strong enough to keep a screw from falling to the ground. Using the short hex bits which are stored in the handle, the driver doesn't have much reach. Longer bits could be purchased separately at any hardware store but they would need to be carried separately from the SpydeRench since they would not fit the onboard storage compartment.

If you like the innovative design of the SpydeRench, I'd recommend picking one up.

Innovative design
One of the few modern multi-tools to feature an adjustable wrench
Blade is scary sharp
Uses standard hex bits (and they're stored onboard)
Diamond file
Pocket clip

There is some play in the blade
The pliers are less versatile than the needle nose pliers on other multi-tools
Bit driver lacks reach
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