Review by: C.K.
Use: Light Duty/General
Time Owned: Less than 1 Month
There are some things that I really like about the Chicago. It's a really light, easy to maintain, non-threatening, really good EDC knife for someone who only needs a light duty knife.
It's a good knife for someone who lives in an urban area or works in a place where people might not appreciate someone brandishing a larger blade.
That said, there are some things about the Chicago that make me less apt to carry it than some of my other knives. For example, the liner lock - because it's rather small and stiff is really hard to disengage. A small knife like this would probably work better as a lockback or just a slip joint.
Another thing that I don't like about the Chicago is the lack of jimping on the thumb ramp and the choil. Normally, I don't care one way or the other about jimping and in fact find that some manufacturers over jimp their knives to the point of absurdity. But in the Chicago, while the G-10 scales are nice and grippy, the lack of jimping actually makes me feel like I have the potential of having a finger slip onto the cutting edge if I cut anything more serious than an envelope.
With the relatively short and thick handle of the Chicago, the lack of jimping actually results in the user feeling like they have substantially less control of the blade than is comfortable. Which is a key point given that one of the usual benefits of a smaller blade is improved blade control.
In summary, while the Chicago is a decent knife - I really do like it - there are better knives (even within Spyderco's line-up) that make the Chicago a second choice at best.
Review by: ChrisM
Use: Every Day Carry
Time Owned: 6 months
This is one seriously cool "little big knife" that hardly gets noticed until it's time to pull it out to use it. Extremely small and concealable, but has a nice heft to it in hand. It is seemingly one of the few legal knives in Chicago because we have wacky knife laws here. The blade is only 2 inches long per Chicago standards, but don't let that fool you into thinking it doesn't do the job. I slice cardboard, tape, paper, etc with mine all day long. It's super light too at only a couple ounces.