The big news out of LTWK from BLADE Show this year is the introduction of two new steels. Whereas they have been mostly known for carbon steels, they are now increasing their stainless and particle steel offerings. They also brought a couple of new models to the party.
First on the steel subject is CPM-3V. I’ve fallen in love with this steel in the course of my own testing here at the blog and this is an awesome addition to the lineup. The first knife to use this steel is their ever popular GNS with more planned in the future. Available in both scandi and saber grinds, these start around $200.
The stainless they are rolling out is AEB-L. This is an extremely fine grained steel that takes a very keen edge and is quite tough for a non-particle stainless. I’ve personally seen someone baton a prototype GNS in this steel through a piece of cold, aged cherry wood with no adverse effects, and it was only 3/32″ thick. I was impressed. So far they have released the GNS, the Genesis, and the Next Gen with AEB-L, all 3/32″ thick and sporting a full convex grind with secondary bevel. Prices start at $190, $220, and $145 respectively.
Two new patterns on display were the Canadian Belt Knife inspired Northern Hunter, available in two sizes. Clay picked up an early version of the smaller knife in D2 with a saber grind, but the production run of both variants come in AEB-L stainless steel with a full-flat grind. The large is 1/8″ thick with the blade 3.875″ long, and the small is 3/32″ thick with a 3.188″ blade. Prices on the small start around $120 and the large around $140.
BLADE ’16 also saw the official debut of the production version JX3, designed by Chris Tanner of YouTube channel Prepared Mind 101, and Pete Kohler of Dark Timber Knives. Sharpened length on the convex ground, A2 blade is roughlt 2.75 inches; it should make a useful edc or field-dressing knife. The handle looks a little unusual but I found it to be quite comfortable, and the shape allows for a lot of different precision holds. These will start around $175.