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broken skull steel

Discussion in 'Cold Steel Knives' started by jencarlos, Apr 14, 2019 at 1:11 AM.

  1. jencarlos

    jencarlos

    102
    Sep 23, 2016
    I have decided to get a Steve Austin Broken Skull, probably the OD green version. Should I hunt around for an older CTS-XHP one, or just get the newest S35VN?

    From what I am hearing, CTS-XHP seems the way to go, but I know Cold Steel to be the absolute reigning king of getting the perfect heat treat out of every steel they choose to use.

    Opinions?
     
  2. The Whip

    The Whip

    542
    Jan 28, 2007
    I'd recommend the S35VN versions for two reasons:

    1) It's available. So when you get it, you won't feel like it's a collector's item and you won't be afraid to carry and use it. That knife begs to be carried.

    2) Just last week I watched a recent interview with Lynn in which he talked briefly about the steel switch. It was based purely on Carpenter's inability to supply quantities of the steel in a timely fashion. He said that they are pleased with the performance they're getting out of S35VN and that it actually edges out CTS-XHP slightly in toughness.

    After you have an S35VN Broken Skull in your pocket, you can find a CTS-XHP version at your leisure for comparison or for the collection.

    -Steve
     
  3. Insipid Moniker

    Insipid Moniker Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 28, 2011
    I sincerely doubt you would ever notice any difference in performance between the two in real world use. Get the one that's less expensive and enjoy using it. Both are very, very good steels.
     
    Stang Bladeworks, willc and jencarlos like this.
  4. AF

    AF Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 14, 2000
    I agree, I would just get what's readily available. S35VN is great. XHP is more popular generally although it's hard to say if that's really deserved. Honestly I think steel preferences are a bit of cult thing. I don't think it's worth paying a premium for a discontinued model in XHP when you can buy it for less in S35VN.
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  5. bikerector

    bikerector Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 16, 2016
    This
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  6. jencarlos

    jencarlos

    102
    Sep 23, 2016
    Sounds good guys. Thanks for the replies.

    Anyone have any experience with GPKnives? I ordered a CTS-XHP version just now since they seem to still have them in stock. However, it may be outdated info and I might end up with an S35VN variant. Either way, the price was right. I assume I am correct that GPKnives is a legitimate retailer?

    Thanks for all your help.
     
  7. willc

    willc Gold Member Gold Member

    998
    Aug 13, 2013
    GP Knives is solid.
    I have ordered from them a few times and they ship quickly.
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  8. MolokaiRider

    MolokaiRider Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 13, 2017
    I really like the Broken Skull design. It’s very thin but offers a lot of blade and cuts fantastic. The DLC coating is quite good also.

    The pocket clip is not my favorite though. Despite that, I find the knife in my pocket quite a bit.
     
    jencarlos and jux t like this.
  9. bikerector

    bikerector Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 16, 2016
    Yes. They are a forum supporter.

    https://www.bladeforums.com/threads/paid-dealer-members-list-updated-10-21-2018.1089879/
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  10. Lapedog

    Lapedog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2016
    Honestly I have always liked s35vn considerably more than XHP. Both are good steels but s35vn is such a well balanced steel.

    On the other hand I have long heard of XHP as behaving like a stainless d2 or an extra hard 440c. I like XHP too but I just like s35vn better. Maybe it was the heat treat but some knives with XHP I have found to be a little bit chippy.
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  11. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger

    Sep 20, 2015
    Oh . . . now . . . I wouldn't exactly go THAT far. Case in point my Cold Steel Lucky knives (S35VN) don't seem all that hard.

    In the same breath I am very impressed with my work knives that I have in CTS-XHP !
    I looked at their site the other day and it looked like the only knife they had that they offered in CTS-XHP was the Broken Skull. THAT PISSED ME OFF ! ! !

    Maybe it is as you say they are now S35VN and they have just not corrected and updated their online presence. I saw some other glaring wrong info. How hard can it be to correct an online catalog ; not like trying to correct a paper one ! ! !
    I have done this kind of work so I can say that.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2019 at 7:31 PM
    jencarlos likes this.
  12. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger

    Sep 20, 2015
    Could be edge geometry.
    This Razel (fourth photo down at this LINK > > >) I use to debur aluminum and steel parts and it just never chips. I have used it for years now at work. :thumbsup:
    It goes without saying it has an obtuse edge geometry.
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  13. Lapedog

    Lapedog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2016
    Almost certainly it was the heat treat.
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  14. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger

    Sep 20, 2015
    Interesting.
    When it's not chipping does it hold an edge well ? How does it feel in use?
    I'm a little jealous; I like 'em a bit "too" hard. I like my Ti Lite four, it is grand as it is heat treat wise but for the use I put it to I can't imagine it being too hard.
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  15. Lapedog

    Lapedog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2016
    I honestly don’t remember which knife it was on. It was chipping while sharpening with diamond plates.
     
    jencarlos likes this.
  16. whp

    whp

    Apr 26, 2009
    I m not sure how big the difference is between s35vn and cts xhp when used as cutting tools at work. And I m as susceptible to marketing as many, though not most people. But I do follow a couple of steel edge retention testers, Jim Ankerson and Cedric and Ada. Looking at their comparisons of edge retention of s35vn with Cold Steel s cts xhp gives an idea of the better edge retention, if not blade toughness.
    I think the use of cts xhp gives a quality blade a level of exclusivity that it doesn't t get with the use of s35vn.
     
    jencarlos and MolokaiRider like this.
  17. jbmonkey

    jbmonkey Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Jun 9, 2011
    both are good cutlery steels. I kinda prefer xhp but cause I find it just a bit easier to touch up faster.

    and yes gp is a quality legit dealer. op you're good there.
     
    jencarlos and MolokaiRider like this.
  18. jencarlos

    jencarlos

    102
    Sep 23, 2016
    Generally I say that about Cold Steel since most all of my experience is with their old US-produced Carbon V and Japan-produced AUS-8A blades. Both of those steels are technically, especially by today’s standards, pretty pedestrian. But Cold Steel really seemed to have a better “recipe” for each one than any other manufacturer.

    Oh and if you want XHP, I am certain the Black Talon and maybe the Immortal are still XHP knives.
     
  19. AF

    AF Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 14, 2000
    They still make a few in XHP. My guess is because they're slow sellers and they have enough steel supply to last for the year at least. Black Talon plain edge only, Tiger Claw, etc.
     
  20. jencarlos

    jencarlos

    102
    Sep 23, 2016
    Received my broken skull yesterday. I did indeed get the XHP one, so it wasn’t a typo. It’s been terrific so far. Excellent lockup, fit, and finish. Blade came razor sharp. Knife disappears in pocket with how light it is.

    Unless you need something overbuilt and tank-like à la 4max/AD10 etc, it’s hard to beat this knife

    :)
     
    jux t, MolokaiRider and AF like this.

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