Artisan Cutlery announced that 10 existing models (nine from CJRB, one from the main Artisan line) are being transitioned from D2 steel to the company’s proprietary powder metallurgy stainless, AR-RPM9.
“It is with great pleasure that we would like to announce a major change in our Artisan Cutlery and CJRB lineup,” the company said in an Instagram post last week. “Due to the positive feedback surrounding our proprietary AR-RPM9 steel, we have decided to shift several of our classic CJRB models and one of our most popular Artisan models over to AR-RPM9 steel while phasing out the old D2 steel versions of these knives over time.”
The Artisan model getting the upgrade is the Orthodox, a mid-size flipper with a blade shape inspired by straight razors. Over on the CJRB side of things, the knives jumping to AR-RPM9 are: the Taiga, Crag and Recoil Lock Crag, Gobi, Rampart, Mangrove, Agave, Feldspar, and Kicker. “These changes will not alter the current prices of these knives or alter any of the overall specifications,” Artisan continues.
Artisan debuted AR-RPM9 in 2020, on the Sea Snake and Arion models. While powder metallurgy processes are most often associated with knives in the mid- to high-end brackets, Artisan’s goal was to create a new PM steel that delivered great performance while being affordable enough to implement on budget releases. So far, the steel seems to have gone over well with users, and when compared directly to D2, AR-RPM9 certainly has the advantage when it comes to corrosion resistance.
The other side of this development is that, if you prefer the semi-stainless D2, you may want to grab the models you like with it before they’re phased out.
Knife in Featured Image: Artisan Cutlery Recoil Lock Crag