C78 Native III

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The C78 Native III is a mid-sized knife with a drop point blade and an ergonomic FRN handle with a deep finger cutout that was introduced in 2003 and discontinued in 2010.


The C78 Native III is the third generation of the Natives. The other Native generations are assigned the C41 SKU.

See C41 Native for more information about Native generations.

Appearance in catalogs

The C78 Native III appeared in all annual Spyderco product catalogs since 2004 (older, newer).



History, mentionings from the forums etc.

  • "Native vs. Native III" thread on the Spyderco forums.
  • Go here for detailled Native history notes by "The Deacon" on his site.

Information from the Spyderco catalog on the web


"As a manufacturer of ergonomic hard-working knives, Spyderco has few rivals. It's been said our R&D team "designs in the dark", meaning function and comfort outweigh prettiness any day. More than anything, this earned Spyderco a reputation for making hardworking knives that seem to end up in your EDC rotation more than other knives.

Case in point is the Native III. Filling the hand with ergonomic comfort is a Bi-Directional textured handle molded of FRN. Dips and valleys on the handle's surface provide spots and textures the palm can grab onto. Separate expansion points along the underside of the handle: one behind the cutting edge, followed by another on the handle and a curve at the butt-end, work in concert keeping the hand firmly positioned and lessening cutting fatigue. The VG-10 blade tapers to a spear-point with a distinct swedge-grind that reduces weight and adds overall balance. Non-sharpened serrations along the spine keep the thumb planted securely while cutting or chopping. An ambidextrous tension wire clip is easy on a cloth pocket and positions the folder for tip-up carry."[1]


The C78 Native III is made in Seki-City, Japan and has a

SKU Handle Edge(s) Steel From/To MSRP Note Number made Grind Clip Clip positions Collectors club
C78BK Black FRN PE PS VG-10 2004-2009 69.95$ (2004), 91.95$ (2009) N/A Hollow Wire, Barrel bolt LH/RH, TU
C78PBL Blue FRN PE CPM-440V 2003 69.95$ (2003) Limited Run 1200?, ca. 100 Forum engraved, ca. 50 collector numbered, others without engraving Hollow Wire, Barrel bolt LH/RH, TU

Most collectible variation

Questions regarding collecting the C78

Some interesting questions we are looking for an answer to:

Questions with an answer:

Technical information

Measurements (mm and grams) of the C78 Native III:

Variation Length overall Length closed Length blade Length edge Hole Ø Blade thickness Weight
C78 179mm 101mm 79mm 67mm 12mm 3mm 81g

Measurements (inches and ounces) of the C78 Native III:

Variation Length overall Length closed Length blade Length edge Hole Ø Blade thickness Weight
C78 7 1/16" 4" 3 1/8" 2 5/8" 15/32" 1/8" 2.8oz


  1. The C78BK Native III in Spyderco's online catalog


The Native 3 with a blue handle; the forum knife of 2003.
A close-up of the blue native 3's blade.