CRKT/Ken Onion delivers a battle-ready brutish knife for deliverance!

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    The heavily featured handle of this knife is 3-D contoured for excellent ergonomics.
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    For added safety, the sheath of the Redemption has dual retention mechanisms.
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    The flat area of the thick spine just forward of the handle comes in handy for performing detailed types of work.
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    The large sheath of this knife also has one of the largest utility pouches author has seen, and even larger compasses would fit with various ferro rods making for a solid basic three.
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    The knife handled its own very well versus green hardwood. By using a solid surface to chop, author was easily able to make 1-inch diameter stakes.
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    The sharpened bevel on the Redemption keeps the knife from being a great draw knife.
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    The high grind and weight forward design allow the Redemption to excel at cutting through green vegetation. It took little effort to make clean cuts through even thicker palm branches, easily producing 3- and 4-inch cut faces.
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    The kitchen is a good place to really get acquainted with a knife. The Various types of cuts used for cutting the varied textures not only lets you get a feel for the edge geometry, but also the over-all control-ability of the knife.

The Redemption, a big beast of a blade, is the latest creation from Columbia River Knife & Tool and the mind of well-known knife designer, Ken Onion. Onion is known for his flowing designs and contoured, ergonomic handles, and probably most notably his assisted-opening folding knives, of which he has designed several for CRKT. However he is definitely no stranger to tough, hardworking fixed-blades.

With an overall length of 15 inches, and 10 inches of cutting edge, the Redemption is a large knife. Large knives require large sheaths, and I like that CRKT took the opportunity here to make the utility pouch on the front of the sheath a good bit larger than average. Other features of the sheath include tie down points around the perimeter and up the back, a nylon webbing leg strap, and quick-adjust dual belt loops. The sheath also has dual retention mechanisms via an adjustable snap-closure retention strap, and a hard Kydex liner that the knife snaps into. The hand of draw can be changed by simply removing the binding post that secures the Kydex to the nylon with a Philips screwdriver and reversing the hard liner.

The heavily featured G10 handle is deeply contoured, but smooth to the touch, and has natural feel in the hand. The rounded surfaces feel very comfortable and yet still provide for a secure grip on the knife. Drawing the knife reveals a flowing, stylized, re-curved blade of 0.25-inch thick YK-30 steel. It has a somewhat leaf-shaped forend, has a sharply beveled spine, and very sharp drop point. The curves of the handle flow well into the curves of the blade and give the knife a very organic look. As is the norm with the CRKT knives I have handled, this blade boasts a very sharp edge.

Have To Eat

Knife sizes and geometries are varied in order to make them more functional in specific tasks, but when it comes down to it, all knives are made for cutting things. It just so happened that I was carrying the package with the knife in it into a room at the same time that I was bringing in the fixings for some pan fried pork tender loin and grilled vegetables that I had picked up for my evening meal. I enjoy cooking very much, so I always like testing knives in a kitchen even if it means – or perhaps more accurately especially if it means – taking the knife out of its comfort zone. This time there was the added attraction of cutting onions with an Onion.

Working mostly with the area of the blade between the tip and the swell, I first attacked the vegetables. Of course the mushrooms were no challenge at all, and a pound of baby portabellas was quickly sliced. Slicing the squashes nice and thin was easy enough, the mass, high grind, and sharp edge sliced through the soft material with little effort. Cutting the onion into eighths was no problem at all, just start at the top, push down and rock the blade. The knife sliced through the tender loin clean and easy with one push-pull motion, and maintaining consistent slices was a breeze.

  • zack

    Did I miss something? Where can I see this knife to buy? Doesn’t seem to be any info anywhere.

  • glennzo

    This thing is so new there ain’t any around!

  • Frank

    I can’t even find it listed on the CRKT website!! And what exactly is this YK-30 steel?

  • Jay

    YK-30 is equivalent to O-1 steel.