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CTS-BD1 vs other more common steels, VG-10, S30V, AUS-8

Discussion in 'Spyderco' started by Cereal_killer, Oct 14, 2013.

  1. Cereal_killer


    Apr 4, 2013
    Hey guys, I notice a lack of discussion on Carpenter's BD1, I have just gotten my first knife in the steel a couple weeks back and this far I quite like it, in my exp it holds an edge better than VG-10 yet still sharpening just as easily.

    I've also noticed under 100x magnification the scratch pattern in the finished edge (coming off my 1200grit DMT then my hard transulent Arkansas stone) is a finer grain than a S30V or VG-10 blade's scratch pattern is after the exact same sharpening method/stone progression.

    I guess I don't have any specific questions, just opening it up for general discussion of the steel in your opinions. Thoughts, interesting facts, your like (or dislike) of it, feel free to share any thoughts, just trying to learn something.

    Mfg's page : http://www.cartech.com/ssalloysprod.aspx?id=3706&terms=Bd1
  2. Ernie1980

    Ernie1980 Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 19, 2012
    I have one knife in this steel, and it performs well. As you mentioned, it is also easy to sharpen and takes a nice edge. I wouldn't compare it to s30 but it goes well against aus 8, vg10, ats34 or 154.
  3. Cereal_killer


    Apr 4, 2013
    Oh yea, forgot to include 154cm in my initial post, I agree its very similar to bd1.

    I consider my VG-10 blades to be great for EDC and light/normal use but not so much as a work / "hard use" steel, both BD1 and 154CM on the other hand I have no problem putting to hard work. One purpose I specifically use either for, but won't use VG-10 for, is removing stuck on gasket material from cast iron/cast Al- things like engine blocks/heads and rear end housings.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2013
  4. Samon


    Nov 12, 2012
    My spyderco ukpk had a CTS-BD1 blade.


    And I think the edge retention is very poor. Infact, I cannot think of a graded steel I've used that bluntens faster!

    It sharpens easily, polishes up nice and shiny but it won't hold a decent edge for no manner of money! I found the best way to make the edge work is to make it very toothy with a course diamond plate. Shame really, I'd give the ukpk an 8 out of 10 if the steel wasn't so bad.

    I beleive I'm not the only one who rates this steel very low: http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/s...based-on-Edge-Retention-cutting-5-8-quot-rope
  5. Cereal_killer


    Apr 4, 2013
    That's a shame its serving you so poor, what angle are sharpening it to? I sharpen my manix2 (freehand so its not exact) at ~12-15dps primary bevel going up threw the grits then a ~22.5dps micro bevel and I've found my edge to be very strong. The mention I made of scraping gasket from cast iron- last weekend I did the pinion seal in my Chevy 3/4 ton (a 10.5" 14 bolt incase your into cars) and I scraped both the cover plate and the pumpkin's gasket flang with the blade and it held up perfectly, it didnt shave afterwards but it didnt have any chipping or rolling and it still cut paper.
    Kiwi blademan likes this.
  6. Samon


    Nov 12, 2012
    I have no idea what angle as I sharpen freehand and have never measured it..?

    Either way, I can get all my knives shaving sharp and evenly polished. This steel however sharp it does get, it doesn't stay sharp. It doesn't roll or chip, it just goes blunt.

    I strop alot, atleast 100 times on a fine grain leather bound board coated in a metal polish just after the 'first sharpen' from new out the box, then I simply strop as needed. But this steel needs to see the stones more than any other steel too, as stropping only brings back the edge for such a short time.

    I'm thinking the edge needs to be made much finer, then made toothy. But I can't be bothered to do it as I have plenty of decent knives that don't require so much maintenance.
  7. Cereal_killer


    Apr 4, 2013
    If you ever want to give it another shot, I'd highly recommend a micro bevel, grind it much more narrow than you normally would then go back at a much higher angle and make a small secondary (aka micro) bevel so the actual cutting edge is a larger angle while still having a narrow profile to be a good slicer.

    A good experiment to prove your theory on needing a toothy edge would be to first leave the micro bevel very coarse and use it, then resharpen it but this time take the micro bevel all the way to a polished finish and compair the two strategies.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2013
  8. Jastab


    Jan 31, 2013
    I couldn't agree more. My experience with that exact same knife is what you stated. I think it has very poor edge retention. Another fun fact is the ukpk uses the same exact handle shape as the caly 3.
  9. Surfingringo

    Surfingringo Gold Member Gold Member

    May 25, 2013
    I've got the manix in bd1. The steel has pretty poor edge retention but I actually like it quite a bit. I kind of enjoy touching up my blades regularly and bd1 takes the best edge of any steel I've ever used. I can put a screaming edge on that steel with very little effort. It's actually the knife that all my edges get measured against...and they all come up short.
  10. jalcon


    Jul 30, 2013
    I bought and sold a Manix 2 Translucent blue with the BD-1. I admit, I didn't even try the steel. I bought it because I loved the look and ergos. After ordering I read some reviews on the Steel and decided to sell it then. I think to the average person the steel is probably fine however.
  11. wire edge

    wire edge Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 6, 2001
    I resharpened my Lightweight Manix 2 to a more acute edge angle so it was really easy to keep sharp on the Sharpmaker. It's not a super steel, but I liked it well enough for a daily user.
  12. RevDevil

    RevDevil Super Evil Supermod Staff Member Super Mod

    Nov 9, 2009
    CTS-BD1 is considered an economy or entry level steel. Nothing close to S30V, 154CM, or VG10. It's designed for light cutting tasks from what I've seen.
  13. testosterone325


    Jul 4, 2013
    I have a Manix 2 in BD1 steel. I've mentioned this in another post that I feel it loses it's hair popping sharpness extremely fast. HOWEVER, a few passes (like 3 per side) on the Sharpmaker ultra fine stones and it gets that edge back instantly. The working edge lasts fairly long, comparable to my VG-10 blade. Overall I would say its very comparable to VG-10 in many regards however it has better corrosion resistance in my experience.

    EDIT: After thinking back some more, VG-10 holds its working edge A LOT longer. I would say the working edge lasts just ok with BD1.
  14. Barman1

    Barman1 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 21, 2013
    I just got the UKPK delivered today. Mostly just to have it seeing as I do travel and am close to a couple of areas that have regulated most knives out of our pockets.
    Until such time when I visit these locales it'll reside in the pack. My guess is that the BD-1 will hold up to that and any other small chores just fine. A couple of passes on the UF ceramics and back in the pack ready for next time.
  15. The Mastiff

    The Mastiff

    Apr 21, 2006
    Spyderco made it's start with Gin 1 steel which is the same composition as BD1. It's not intended to be a "super steel" now but when Spyderco began it was one of the best premium stainless steels available in Japan. "Silver Paper" No#1 perhaps? ( Gin 1)

    It was the first stainless I had any respect for. All I used prior was carbon steels as the steels that were usual than, 440A, 440C, I don't care much for. I recall back in the 70's seeing both full of inclusions big enough to be very visible to the naked eye. Gin 1 was cleaner and sharpened better for me.

    I have seen 440A and C that was clean in the past decade so I know it's not the norm now yet we are spoiled as can be now. Steels that couldn't be made back than are ho hum now.
  16. steve4765630


    Jul 16, 2005
    You can't sharpen BD1 at the same angle as S30V and expect it to hold an edge as long. I sharpen mine at a slightly wider angle than my VG10 blade and get similar edge retention. It still shaves hair like a champ even at the wider angle, so why sharpen it so thin when It's not needed?
  17. nccole


    Jun 2, 2011
    I would say why carry a blade with steel that I can't sharpen at a steeper angle thus making it not as effective a cutter. Yes, it can shave hair but it still has wider shoulders that drag when cutting. Just a different way of looking at it I guess. In the end it is nice to have lots of different steels to try out and see which one YOU like.
  18. Humppa


    Jul 25, 2010
    My experience as well. The edge retention is much lower than with VG10 and nothing to compare with S30V. But - it takes a great edge easily. I think it´s a pretty soft stuff.
  19. steve4765630


    Jul 16, 2005
    With the FFG of the Manix Lightweight I feel no drag at all. I think drag has way more to do with the sub bevel and blade grind than anything. I bevel the edge at a sharper angle then just touch it a few times with my ceramic stone at the slightly wider angle. Works great. My co-workers love this knife. One of the guys that used it mentioned how effortlessly it glided through tough material.
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2013

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