The Cutting Edge

The official blog of Knife Depot

Cold Steel Announces Move From CTS-XHP to S35VN Blade Steel

For some reason, Cold Steel still gets the label as a company that only makes products for mall ninjas. While they still do make those ridiculous proof videos, that simply doesn’t capture the whole image of the company.

Cold Steel has made huge strides the past few decades and have heeded the call of customers while putting out some truly awesome knives.

First they brought the great Andrew Demko on board (who brought the Tri-Ad lock). Then they updated their steel from AUS8 (CRKT could take a page from this). But best of all they are always communicating with their customers.

In the latest change, Cold Steel announced on its social media platforms that it is transitioning the blade steel on its higher-end knives from CTS-XHP to CPM-S35VN. The reason is a lack of availability.

Here is what they wrote on Facebook:

Dear Cold Steel Customers,We’d like to let you know about some changes you’ll begin to see on Cold Steel products—sold…

Posted by Cold Steel on Friday, February 23, 2018

Cold Steel has already started transitioning away from CTS-XHP to S35VN in its latest knives like the Lucky One and Golden Eye, so it’s not so shocking to see the whole line of higher-end knives adopt the steel.

So far, the response has been mostly positive. However, a number of customers are lamenting the fact that CTS-XHP will no longer be available. CTS-XHP is not as well known but the steel has excellent edge retention and toughness.

But critics like Nick Shabazz and Tony Sculimbrene of Everyday Commentary have praised the move to S35VN and the way Cold Steel handled the necessary transition on the company’s Instagram post.

Cold Steel doesn’t anticipate any price increases as it slowly moves its three dozen or so knives that currently use CTS-XHP to S35VN. If you want a knife in the old steel, I recommend getting one before it’s too late.


Cold Steel also announced a move from CTS BD1 steel to Japanese AUS 10A steel in its other knives.

Here’s the full announcement on Instagram.


  1. I just heard about this yesterday and have already begun picking up all the knives I had on my wish list… Recon 1, Immortal, Code 4, and have a few more to go 🙂

  2. What a bummer on changing the knife steels. s35vn does not even compare to cts xhp in edc uses and changing from cts bd1 to AUS 10 (440c equivalent) is another horrible move. Having US steels is what kept me as a cold steel customer. looks like I may need to change brands.

  3. I heard this from the my friend and I cannot wait to have it.

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