So I recently happened to find myself in the possession of a Richmond AS Laser, courtesy of CKTG. I was going to write this review after one week of owning it but I decided that four days has been long enough. I ordered it with the Saya, so I'll cover that as well. The knife only took two [excruciatingly long] days to arrive, so I'm happened with the business aspect of my purchase.
In these hours following my obtaining of the knife, nothing but insane laughter was heard coming from my kitchen. This thing literally glides through food, including loaves of bread. In the picture you can see I've murdered some unsuspecting zucchini squash. I emulated some generic sharpness tests I've watched, it's passed all of them except for shaving the hair of my arm, but I have very little arm hair as it is and I'm to afraid to really press the knife against my skin hahaha, chances are I'm just doing that test wrong. It's garnered remarks such as "I'm scared to even use this this thing." from my co-workers, if the other knives in the kitchen were to suddenly become sentient then they would surely look upon the Richmond Laser with envious eyes.
The draw back to writing this review after such a short period of possessing the knife is that I can't speak much for the edge retention. I haven't noticed any deterioration in the cutting performance of the knife...but I would be disappointed if I did after only 4 days. I haven't honed the knife yet [tsk tsk] because I don't know the Rc. of the honing steel I have and I'd rather not damage the knife or the steel; I'll just but a new one. Could somebody suggest one?
Comfort & Handling
This is my first Wa handle Knife, and I think I prefer it to the Ho [Western] handles. Then knife is weighted well, it is slightly blade heavy with the balance point being about a inch above the chin. The knife feels super light, I believe it's weight is considered low-medium weight, it just has a great feel. I can use a racket grip comfortably and pinch gripping is even better.
The Wa handle is comfortable in either hand, I spent a few minutes cutting with the knife in my left hand and I actually was able to adapt fairly easily; and I'm not ambidextrous by any means at all. The knife is super sharp which helped I'm sure. None the less, the knife is comfortable in either hand.
The one thing I am going to gripe about [and bear in mind that it's probably not the knife] is that cutting with a rocking motion feels unnatural to me which is a let down because it's my preferred style of doing things. It could be the extra length [I wanted a 210mm, 240mm is bigger then any knife I've ever owned] or the height of the blade. It's not to say the knife doesn't perform well when rock cutting, but something about it feels off. Any ideas?
^ Japanese Etching on one side of the blade, what does it say? It looks good at least.
The blade is like a fine womn beautiful and slender, the logo on the side is classy and the Japanese Kanjii etched into the other side give it some character and make it distinctive. Everybody knows this knife is mine.
and I'm damn proud of it.
The knife is proof that Damascus steel isn't the end all to be all for fine craftsmanship in knives, and the handle is as good as I could ask for.
^ Knife in the Saya
Knife side by side with the Saya
I've never owned one of these, but I can say it feels sturdy enough to keep my knife safe, the knife catches nicely when inserted all the way into it [TWSS] but it is by no means difficult to remove. It looked a little pale so I put it in my oven to cure for a little while, it has a nicer color to it now. I'm a little surprised it didn't come with a nicer finish or anything, but the important part is it keeps my knife safe.
^ Here's a picture of my armpit [sexy] as I tuck my phone into it so I have both hands free to sheath the knife.
While I'm new to high performance knives, impeccable quality doesn't need to slap me in the face for me to notice it. If you take care of this knife, it will take care of you. Scores of vegetables and proteins will be at your mercy, powerless to stop your onslaught. When you release the laser from it's sheath, is shall be the end of all tasks before you.
I have no regrets at all about spending the money on this knife, I am positively enthralled by it's capabilities.