Since this sub-forum is new, I'd like to share a little bit of my "knife history" and explain why I think the byrds have been such a great thing.
I have been into knives for almost as long as I can remember. I received my first folding knife (a Vic Classic SD) from my dad for my 9th birthday. It was a great day, and a passing of trust from my dad (acknowledging that I was responsible enough for a knife). My next two knives were acquired when I was 12. I purchased a Boy Scout Utility knife (the BSA knife with the red SAK-like scales) and a Victorinox Recruit that year. The first thing I remember triggering an affinity for knives in me was MacGuyver. The utility he was able to attain with his pocketknife convinced me that I needed to have one with me at all times. I eventually lost the BSA knife but saved up hard to buy a Victorinox Huntsman later that same year. As years went on, I moved up to bigger and better knives. My first decent quality folder was a Gerber EZ out in 1997 (remember, I said decent quality, not great). I bought my first Spyderco in 1999 during my freshman year in college. It was a limited run Aluminum Police model. Not knowing as much then as I do now, I edc'd that thing until is was in terrible shape. I bought a Snap-It that year as well for smaller edc occasions (I was really into the hanging my knife from my belt loop after I got that).
Over the years since, I've owned a lot of knives, and I've also sold a lot of them. For the last 10 years, my collecting and carrying interests have really been divided between Kershaw/ZT and Spyderco. I've owned knives from other companies, but I've sold most of them. Except for the Cold Steel large Voyager that lives in my bug out bag. I live in South Dakota. Hunting and fishing are staples around here. As far as knives go, there is almost nothing illegal here. I used to work in a bank where one of the men who worked there always had a Buck 110 on his belt and no one bothered. At the same bank, my knife once fell out of my pocket in my boss's office and all she did was bring it back to me at my desk and got a good chuckle about me losing it in her office. Some days, I see more people with knives clipped to their pocket than those who don't. One thing I've learned living in a place where knives are accepted as readily as they are here, even the majority of people who carry a knife don't carry a good one. Cheap Gerbers, Smith and Wessons, and no name folders rule their pockets. The ones who care about made in the USA, generally carry a Buck.
So, after my rambling, you're probably wondering where I'm going with this. Well, how does a solid knife company get the business of the people who are out there buying the more generic overseas produced knives. I know this has been said before, but Spyderco implemented, IMO, an extremely visionary solution to this quandary. For lack of a better wat to express it, Spyderco created a budget-friendly "off brand" of their products. Instead of ignoring or trying to quash the issue of lower quality budget knives, Spyderco took the bull by the horns and brought quality materials and workmanship into the budget arena. That is the reason I love byrd knives so much. Because it represents, in a big way, the forward-thinking and creative problem solving that has become a Spyderco hallmark. I've owned several byrds, and I've given away even more of them as gifts. The recipients are almost always floored by the quality and (knowing my penchant for spending top dollar on knives) ask how much it cost. Most of them are even more surprised by the price than the quality. I always hear people say that for the money, the byrds can't be beat. I've bought and owned knives costing up to twice as much as a Meadowlark or Cara Cara that don't have as much to offer.
For all those with the patience to get through this, thanks for reading.