Just received a Richmond Addict 2, and thought I would give initial impressions. The instant I saw that the Addict 2 is made of CPM154 stainless steel, I ordered one, even though I don’t like CPM154. Let me explain. CPM154 is prized by custom knife makers as a hard, tough, high quality stainless steel that takes a sharp edge, and holds the edge for a long time. It also takes, and holds, a glimmering polish. In general, CPM154 has properties similar to S30V stainless steel, which is the darling of custom knife makers, and has been adopted by the U.S. military as required in all new stainless steel mil-spec knives. The problem with CPM154 is in getting the edge on the knife in the first place. For whatever reason, it is hard to sharpen.
Therefore, although I can sharpen, and have the stones to do the job, I paid the extra $20.00 to have CKTG sharpen it before it was shipped to me. My idea was that CPM154 holds an edge so well, that most of the time the Addict 2 should only need minor touch up on honing rods and fine grain stones even with heavy use. Based on my prior experience with CPM154, I recommend that most people buying the Addict 2 should pay the extra $20.00 for the sharpening offered by CKTG.
Fit and finish is top notch, especially at this price. Simply put, the knife is beautiful out of the box, with an attractive rosewood handle and ebony ferrule. I love Richmond’s concept of a workhorse gyuto, and CPM154 is a great choice for his purpose. The profile is more like a traditional gyuto than the currently popular french Sabatier style gyutos, like the Richmond Ultimatum. I like the wider point for a workhorse gyuto. In other words, Mark Richmond must be one really smart guy, because it looks like he thinks a lot like me.
I was surprised at how light the knife is. For some reason, I associated “workhorse” with heavy, but it is surprisingly light and nimble in the hand, and I’m guessing that it will be a great line knife. Balance is perfectly placed close enough to the handle that it will balance near the spot where most people will pinch grip the knife.
The Addict 2 arrived with a good freshly sharpened edge, but the bevel was not as polished as I would like, so I be polished the edge on some finer stones before I used it to slice and dice some carrots, celery, onions, and tomatoes for lunch.
My initial impression: Richmond Knives is starting a quiet revolution by putting the quality of a custom gyuto in the hands of chefs at a very reasonable price. If you need a workhorse gyuto every day in the kitchen; a knife to use hour after hour, day after day, week after week...then you need look no further. It doesn’t hurt that my old sharpening nemesis, CPM154 stainless steel, happens to be very easy to maintain. Good bye camelia oil!
So long as you purchase the CKTG sharpening service, you will have a knife that will last a lifetime. Highly recommended.
Zen in the Art of Knife Sharpening
“If one really wants to be master of an art, technical knowledge of it is not enough. One has to transcend technique so that the art becomes an ‘artless art’ growing out of the Unconscious.” Eugen Herrigel