Visit with Spyderco at the Lone Star Knife Expo: April 13-14 Dallas Market Hall Dallas, Texas

The Pingo was specifically designed to conform to the knife laws of Denmark, which prohibit both lock-blade folding knives and all forms of one-hand-opening knives. Its history actually began with Spyderco's UK Penknife, which was designed to meet the requirements of knife-carry laws in the United Kingdom. Released in 2005, the UK Penknife combined the convenient one-hand-opening and clip carry of a Spyderco CLIPIT with a non-locking notched joint mechanism that was a mechanically evolved version of the traditional slipjoint system. This new breed of pocketknife, known as a SLIPIT, revolutionized the concept of the traditional non-locking folder and provided the people of the UK with a legal, socially responsible everyday carry cutting tool.

Although many European knife fans applauded the release of the UK Penknife, Danish knife users were still left wanting because their laws prohibited any one-hand-opening knife. To meet their needs, in mid 2005 Spyderco released a very limited number of "DK" penknives. The DK was basically a UK Penknife with a shorter blade (70mm—the maximum allowed in Denmark) and a small, chamfered Trademark Round Hole™ in the blade. The reduced size and chamfering of the blade hole were intended to make the knife impossible to open one-handed, but were not completely successful.

Undeterred, Spyderco approached Danish custom knifemakers Jens Anso and Jesper Voxnaes and asked them to design an all-new folding knife that was fully compliant with Danish knife law and was consistent with the traditional style of Danish working knives. Anso and Voxnaes embraced the project and within a few months presented Spyderco with drawings and a plastic concept model. Several fully functional prototypes were then produced and shared at trade shows to elicit end-user feedback. The design was gradually refined, including the removal of the Rabbit Ears—traditional raised "bumps" on the spine of the blade that provide a thumb purchase during use. The resulting knife, which draws its name from the nickname of the heir to the Danish throne, is the Pingo.

The heart of the Pingo is its distinctive sheepfoot blade, which is ground from Böhler-Uddeholm's premium N690Co stainless steel. The blade is designed to meet Danish legal length limits while still providing a functional and versatile cutting tool. Its Trademark Round Hole clearly identifies it as a Spyderco knife and provides a handy purchase for two-handed opening, but the hole is purposely small to prevent one-handed blade-opening. Similarly, its sturdy notched-joint mechanism is powered by a strong spring that helps hold the blade securely in the open and closed positions, ensuring its safe use as a cutting tool while precluding one-handed opening.

The Pingo's handle is injection-molded fiberglass-reinforced-nylon (FRN) scales and a sturdy stainless steel back spacer. The scales feature a molded checkered texturing that enhances a secure grip without being overly abrasive. A reversible deep-pocket wire clip provides both left and right-side tip-up carry, keeping the knife accessible for immediate use.

Although designed to meet the unique needs of the Danish knife community, the Pingo's versatile design and socially friendly demeanor make it a perfect choice for knife users everywhere. It not only transcends the limits of the traditional non-locking pocketknife, but also redefines Spyderco's own definition of a SLIPIT because of its purposeful two-hand-opening design.

The Pingo will be available in the near future with a bright Orange FRN handle - C163POR Pingo SLIPIT Orange.


Stay connected to Spyderco through other avenues. Spyderco has a Facebook page, Twitter page, and Google Plus page in addition to our monthly byte. By connecting with us through social media, you have the opportunity to join in on polls, product suggestions and feedback, as well as various contests! To join Spyderco’s social media outlets, click on the links below.


Also known as a “wave-shaped feature” or “Emerson Opener,” this novel device was invented and patented by noted knifemaker Ernest Emerson. Through a licensing arrangement with Emerson, Spyderco is allowed to incorporate it into a number of our designs.

The Emerson Opener consists of a small hook on the spine of the blade of a folding knife. When the knife is drawn from the pocket, this hook snags on the mouth of the pocket and rotates the blade into the open position. Unlike conventional one-hand-opening folding knives or even automatic knives, which allow the blade to be opened after the knife is drawn, the Emerson Opener deploys the blade as it clears the pocket.

Because the Emerson Opener hooks onto the pocket is opening, it works best with pants made from sturdy fabric. Dress pants and other pants made from light fabrics are not suitable for use with this opening method.

To prevent property damage or injury to others, always ensure that the area around you is clear of people and obstructions before attempting to open your knife.

Standard-Grip Draw

To draw and open your knife in a standard grip (with the blade extending from the thumb side of the hand), first ensure that it is configured for tip-up carry by mounting the clip to the butt end of the handle. Clip the closed knife to your pocket with the body of the knife inside the pocket and knife positioned all the way to the back of the pocket. The spine of the blade should face to the rear.

Reach your thumb into the pocket as deeply as possible and index it firmly against the side of the knife’s handle. At the same time, curl your fingers and place your index and middle fingers against the base of the clip. Apply a pinching pressure between your thumb and fingers to establish a secure grip on the knife. As you lift the knife upward, apply slight rearward pressure to keep the spine of the blade against the rear of your pocket. As the Emerson Opener hooks on the pocket mouth, continue your draw so the blade safely clears your body and locks in the fully opened position.

Practice these movements slowly and carefully until you are thoroughly comfortable with them. Then, gradually increase your speed while maintaining your focus on safety.

Reverse-Grip Draw

Spyderco knives with Emerson Openers can also be configured so they can be drawn into a reverse grip (with the blade extending from the little-finger side of the hand). To configure your knife for this type of draw, mount the clip to the butt end of the handle so the spine of the closed blade faces forward when the knife is clipped in your pocket.

To draw from this position, reach your thumb deep into your pocket and index it against the handle of the knife. As you do, ensure that the web of your thumb is to the rear of the butt of the handle. Place the fingertips of your index and middle fingers on base of the clip and apply a pinching pressure between them and your thumb. Maintain a firm grip on the handle and lift the knife out of your pocket. As you do, apply forward pressure to slide the spine of the closed blade against the front portion of your pocket. As the knife clears the pocket, the Emerson Opener will snag the pocket edge to pivot the blade into the open position.

Again, practice these movements slowly and carefully and become thoroughly comfortable with them before you increase your speed.

Drawing Without Opening

It is also possible to draw your Emerson Opener-equipped knife without automatically opening the blade. To do this, use the same grip and mechanics described previously, but draw the knife through the middle of the pocket without allowing the hook to snag the pocket mouth. You may also use your fingers to hold the blade closed as the knife is drawn.

The Emerson Opener is a truly unique feature that significantly enhances the ease of deployment of our knives. We hope this information helps you understand and master its safe operation and that your Spyderco knife serves you well.

Coming Soon
GOLDEN, CO 80402