CRK S35vn or S45vn, worth the wait?

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by mvm217, Jul 17, 2020.

  1. mvm217


    Feb 14, 2018
    I haven't posted before but this question keeps gnawing at me so I thought maybe some of you with more experience might be able to guide me.

    My grail knife is a chris reeve sebenza and I've finally saved up enough to get it, but then I heard through these forums that CRK are updating to a new steel at the end of the year - S45vn. I've read all the reviews on this steel that I could find, apparently S45vn has added edge retention and corrosion resistance with decreased toughness over S35vn.

    My question is why is everybody so excited for S45vn over S35vn and is it worth waiting half a year to a year for CRK to release it? Why do knife people prefer edge retention over toughness? Won't the S45vn steel be harder to sharpen at 61 vs the 59 hardness of the S35vn? Is it my imagination or do supersteels feel more brittle compared to the more forgiving "give" of a normal steel? I admit I'm relatively new to this hobby but that's a feeling I get when handling them.

    Half of my small collection are supersteels like S110v and M390 and the other half are "normal" steels like VG10 and N690 steel. I have had lots of edge problems with the supersteels, but never any problems with the "normal" steels. The tip of my s110v broke off with light usage (my fault) and is super hard to sharpen, but my n690 steel is a joy to sharpen (I love sharpening on my spyderco tri-angle sharpener) and I've batoned my VG10 blade through frozen logs with no edge problems. I don't plan on batoning with a Chris Reeve (some youtuber already did that) but I will be hard using it while camping.

    Based on all this, is there a real reason to wait for S45vn over S35vn? If there is, I will wait. I'm just a little confused over the amount of excitement for S45vn even though it doesn't seem like much of an upgrade.
    guy g likes this.
  2. Therom


    Nov 13, 2013
    You can be sure CRK does a great job on s35vn
    We don’t know how will be the s45vn

    S35vn is almost twice as though as s45vn whereas s45vn will have an increase edge holding

    so it really depends on what will be your use of your knife

    for what I am concern I had CRKs for many years now and I never had to complain about s35vn for the use I have of my knives
    sliceofaloha and guy g like this.
  3. insta9ves


    Apr 3, 2007
    If you really need a sebenza right now, go get it, worst case you can sell it later for 75% the cost if you keep it in good condition. Think of it like rental cost to experience something you didn’t have.
    If you want to try something new, you can wait.
    guy g likes this.
  4. guy g

    guy g Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 22, 2000
    If you are a steel nut, it may be worth the wait. I bought my Small 21 a few weeks ago because I liked the CGG. I am happy with the S35vn . Based on my experience with BG42 at 60-61 it just takes a little bit longer to sharpen than 59.
  5. biggerjon

    biggerjon Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 10, 2006
    Thee new steel will be on the Sebenza 31. My vote would be to get a 21 now, while you can still find them. They will probably increase in value over time.
    s35vn is an awesome steel. I think you will like it.
    353, A.S. and guy g like this.
  6. dan35


    Apr 21, 2009
    Agree. 21 in S35vn while they last. Just to get the 21 before they are gone. I think it will be a while before S45 hits the market.

    S45 will have some improvements over S30. Namely smaller particle size. Only the best sharpeners may notice the difference but it is there.
    guy g likes this.
  7. mvm217


    Feb 14, 2018
    Thanks for the input everybody, I think I'll go ahead and get one in S35vn, half because it sounds like a great steel and half because I don't want to wait!
    TRfromMT, Dcdavis, Sergeua and 4 others like this.
  8. Alberta Ed

    Alberta Ed

    Jun 29, 1999
    I'm not sure most people would be able to tell the difference between S35Vn and S45Vn in the real world. I've been delighted with my Sebbie 21 in S35Vn, so I'd say go for that one.
    353 and guy g like this.
  9. A.S.

    A.S. Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 8, 2017
    I have a Sebenza in S30V that I’ve used for years and the blade is still in top shape. The CRK quality and fit are what makes the knife great in my opinion. Go ahead and get a 21 in S35V on the exchange. By the way, you’ll end up with more than one.
    guy g likes this.
  10. K.O.D.

    K.O.D. Sanity Not Included Platinum Member

    Aug 21, 2013
    I love S35VN. I agree on getting a 21 while you can.
    A.S. and guy g like this.
  11. Ajack60

    Ajack60 Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Apr 21, 2013
    Get the 21, once they’re gone the only way to get one will be the secondary market. Currently, CRK is running the S35VN in the 59/60 hardness range. For years they ran 58/59, they finally upped it around mid 2013 or early 2014. Don’t really know how much of a difference that really makes, but most folks don’t have any complaints.
    353, Dcdavis, A.S. and 1 other person like this.
  12. Peter Hartwig

    Peter Hartwig Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 29, 2008
  13. sharp_edge

    sharp_edge Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 30, 2015
    This thread makes me swinging from wanting to sell my large CF inlay Sebenza 21 to desiring to buy a large wood inlay sebenza 21 :eek: Now the question is which wood inlay to go with? (I confess I derail the thread).
    guy g likes this.
  14. dirc


    Jan 31, 2018
    why are you hard using a CRK camping? honestly, you should pick up a mora companion for that, and use the CRK for food type things while camping (of course, this is imho)
    guy g likes this.
  15. mag1

    mag1 Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 26, 2010
    dirc likes this.
  16. Mrs_Esterhouse


    Apr 9, 2019
    I would guess most CRK users don't use their knives as pry bars and log splitters but instead use them as intended—for slicing. That's why edge retention is usually of higher interest. If someone wants to carve out a 2x4, yes something like M4 or K390 is going to be a better choice.
    guy g likes this.
  17. Alberta Ed

    Alberta Ed

    Jun 29, 1999
    Sebbies are hard use knives (for cutting).
    guy g and Mrs_Esterhouse like this.
  18. jstn

    jstn Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 27, 2012
    I prefer the toughness of S35VN. Toughness often gets overlooked imo. That said, I doubt most of us could tell much difference between the two steels In actual use.
    BD_01 and guy g like this.
  19. PB3366

    PB3366 Gold Member Gold Member

    May 15, 2020
    That’s what I say about most of my knives haha.
    guy g and mag1 like this.

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