Newbie steel question.

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Fright_Fox
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Newbie steel question.

Postby Fright_Fox » Sat Dec 07, 2019 5:25 pm

Hello everyone just a newbie question about steels. Would steel like 1095, 01, A2 be tougher than say S3OV and S35vn? If properly heat treated is stainless steel tough? Thanks.

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Albatross
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Albatross » Sat Dec 07, 2019 6:17 pm

Fright_Fox wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 5:25 pm
Hello everyone just a newbie question about steels. Would steel like 1095, 01, A2 be tougher than say S3OV and S35vn? If properly heat treated is stainless steel tough? Thanks.
It all depends on what you mean by "tough". Will they(1095, 01, A2) fare better with prying? Yes. Will their edges deform slower on impact(staples, nails, rocks)? In my experience, 1095 rolls well before S30V would think of rolling or chipping. There is a point where S30V will sustain more damage than 1095, but that's extreme usage(imo). Edge stability has to be taken into account when discussing toughness.

What kinds of tasks do your knives need to perform? That might help answer your question.

Most people find S30V to be plenty tough enough. Maybe Vivi could share his knife testing videos. To be clear though, S30V is not generally referred to as a "tough" steel, but it was developed to be a balanced steel, for knives specifically.

If toughness is a concern, you might be able to track down one of the AEB-L Urbans. It's supposed to be the stainless equivalent to 52100.
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...But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of "deigning in the dark"...

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JonLeBlanc
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby JonLeBlanc » Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:26 am

That sounds like a pretty good answer Albatross gave above. I too think that something like 1095 etc would roll well before S30V, although I've had S30V chip (only very slightly) cutting through plastic with no twisting of the blade. Obviously not the end of the world, but since I'm relatively unconcerned with either edge retention or corrosion resistance, I tend to like the "explicitly tough" steels.
My collection so far: 52100 Military (2); 52100 PM2 (2); 52100 Para3; Stretch2 V-Toku; KnifeWorks M4 PM2; BentoBox M390 PM2; BentoBox S90V Military; Police4 K390; S110V PM2; SS Delica AUS-6; Wayne Goddard Sprint VG-10
Wish list: Hundred Pacer; Sliverax; Mantra; 52100 PM2 SE; Kapara

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby AccountDeletedUserRequest » Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:30 am

Fright_Fox wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 5:25 pm
Hello everyone just a newbie question about steels. Would steel like 1095, 01, A2 be tougher than say S3OV and S35vn? If properly heat treated is stainless steel tough? Thanks.
Those carbon steels are definitely tougher. Much tougher.

S30V is tough enough for pretty much any practical knife use you could come up with. Check out this video I made with one of Spydercos S30V folders (3mm thick at the spine, full flat grind, hand ground edge at around 10-12 degrees per side)

https://youtube.com/watch?v=hl3n-BtLoaI

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Pelagic » Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:32 am

Toughness as in resistance to fracture, nothing stainless really compares to those simple steels.
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby AccountDeletedUserRequest » Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:38 am

The smaller Manix is avilable in BD1, which is very tough for a stainless. Theres also a couple different carbon steel versions available, like 52100 and m4.

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Ankerson
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Ankerson » Sun Dec 08, 2019 12:17 pm

Fright_Fox wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 5:25 pm
Hello everyone just a newbie question about steels. Would steel like 1095, 01, A2 be tougher than say S3OV and S35vn? If properly heat treated is stainless steel tough? Thanks.


Something that you will actually notice in a folder under any sort of NORMAL use, no, very unlikely.

NOW..

In large fixed blades that does get more debatable and it will depend on what the knives will actually be used for. But even then steels like S30V and S35VN work just fine. Other factors like heat treatment, blade geometry and thickness all matter here, and it matters a lot depending on the knife and the actual use.

The short answer is that it depends.

Personally I lean towards stainless MOST of the time, or semi-Stainless like INFI as an example and have never had any issues in real use that was due to the steel type.

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Larrin » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:17 pm

1095 and O1 do not have particularly high toughness. In the same range as S30V.
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http://www.KnifeSteelNerds.com - Steel Metallurgy topics related to knives

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Pelagic
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Pelagic » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:46 pm

Funny, every 1095 knife over ever owned has more resistance to fracture than every s30v I've ever owned by a significant margin. I use my old hickory butcher's knife as a machete on hardwood. I chop trees down hitting the trunk as hard as I can. Keep in mind, this is a butcher's knife, with geometry akin to a kitchen knife. It has never even thought of chipping. I guarantee you I could chop a brick or a cinder block in half with it and the edge would not chip. I'll NEVER believe s30v could do that unless it is raw stock that hasn't been heat treated.
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Larrin
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Larrin » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:55 pm

Pelagic wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:46 pm
Funny, every 1095 knife over ever owned has more resistance to fracture than every s30v I've ever owned by a significant margin. I use my old hickory butcher's knife as a machete on hardwood. I chop trees down hitting the trunk as hard as I can. Keep in mind, this is a butcher's knife, with geometry akin to a kitchen knife. It has never even thought of chipping. I guarantee you I could chop a brick or a cinder block in half with it and the edge would not chip. I'll NEVER believe s30v could do that unless it is raw stock that hasn't been heat treated.
That’s why it is important to do specific tests and not rely on our intuition.
http://www.KnifeSteelNerds.com - Steel Metallurgy topics related to knives

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Albatross
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Albatross » Sun Dec 08, 2019 4:24 pm

Pelagic wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:46 pm
Funny, every 1095 knife over ever owned has more resistance to fracture than every s30v I've ever owned by a significant margin. I use my old hickory butcher's knife as a machete on hardwood. I chop trees down hitting the trunk as hard as I can. Keep in mind, this is a butcher's knife, with geometry akin to a kitchen knife. It has never even thought of chipping. I guarantee you I could chop a brick or a cinder block in half with it and the edge would not chip. I'll NEVER believe s30v could do that unless it is raw stock that hasn't been heat treated.
I think part of it is the intentional differences in heat treat, due to the intended purposes for fixed blades vs folders.
sal wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:01 pm

...But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of "deigning in the dark"...

sal

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Baron Mind » Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:18 pm

Albatross pretty much nailed it. 1095 is tougher than s30v, meaning it can endure greater lateral stress before it will experience catastrophic failure, aka snapping into pieces. It will bend further than s30v without breaking

However, in the context of knives, people often confuse toughness with strength. Strength measures how much force is required to initiate the bending in the first place, rather than how much force it takes to break. S30v is stronger than 1095.

With knives, for intended knife use, strength is more important than toughness. For example, theoretically, s30v will be able to cut a very hard zip tie with no adverse affects on the edge, while the edge on 1095 will bend, aka roll, leaving a permanent deformation and reducing cutting ability. On the other hand 1095 can chop a thick metal wire resulting in "only" in a huge, permanent roll, or bend, in the edge, while s30v will end up with a significant chip broken off the edge.

In scenario 1, s30v survives unscathed, 1095 is permanently damaged.

In scenario 2, both knives are permanently damaged, just in different ways.

Then ask yourself, do I cut more zip ties or nails?

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Larrin
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Larrin » Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:37 pm

I think the edge geometry is much more important than heat treatment if we are comparing S30V/1095 knives for chopping or prying tasks. If it’s 15 dps both 1095 and S30V would fail. 1095 can get some more toughness it’s taken down to lower hardness. But using a lower carbon steel would increase the toughness a lot more.
http://www.KnifeSteelNerds.com - Steel Metallurgy topics related to knives

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Ankerson » Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:49 pm

Larrin wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:37 pm
I think the edge geometry is much more important than heat treatment if we are comparing S30V/1095 knives for chopping or prying tasks. If it’s 15 dps both 1095 and S30V would fail. 1095 can get some more toughness it’s taken down to lower hardness. But using a lower carbon steel would increase the toughness a lot more.

If they want something to whack at trees, bricks and cinder blocks all day 1080, L6 or 5160 would be good places to start.

Or they could use the correct tools like an AXE or a Cold Chisel.
Last edited by Ankerson on Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:57 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby bearfacedkiller » Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:54 pm

Production 1095 from companies like Ontario, Esee and Ka-Bar is run at 58 or lower. Hard to compare that to S30V at 60 or higher. 1095 can be run well into the 60s but you seldom see that.
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Ankerson » Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:56 pm

bearfacedkiller wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:54 pm
Production 1095 from companies like Ontario, Esee and Ka-Bar is run at 58 or lower. Hard to compare that to S30V at 60 or higher. 1095 can be run well into the 60s but you seldom see that.

Yeah and the cheaper the knives are the lower the hardness tends to be too.

Down near 50 HRC on some of them..

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Baron Mind » Sun Dec 08, 2019 7:17 pm

Larrin wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:37 pm
I think the edge geometry is much more important than heat treatment if we are comparing S30V/1095 knives for chopping or prying tasks. If it’s 15 dps both 1095 and S30V would fail. 1095 can get some more toughness it’s taken down to lower hardness. But using a lower carbon steel would increase the toughness a lot more.
And of course Larrin comes through with some level headed perspective, correctly reframing the whole conversation.

Sometimes we forget what we've learned and get caught up in the moment. I think most things stated here are true, but there should have been an immediate caveat about how edge geometry is much more important than steel type or heat treat in determining how an edge will behave regarding rolls or chips during certain tasks.

Most steel newbies are almost assuredly new to blade geometry as well, but it must be discussed.

Essentially, if you're worried about edge "toughness", sharpen the knife at 25 degrees per side, and it won't matter what the steel is, you're safe.

If you're worried about toughness because you want to pry, find a knife with thick stock, little to no distal taper, and a low saber grind.

I could keep going on and on but I think that's enough to add for now. Thanks Larrin.

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Albatross
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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Albatross » Sun Dec 08, 2019 7:42 pm

bearfacedkiller wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:54 pm
Production 1095 from companies like Ontario, Esee and Ka-Bar is run at 58 or lower. Hard to compare that to S30V at 60 or higher. 1095 can be run well into the 60s but you seldom see that.
That's what I was referring to. ESEE rolls if you say the word, "staple", but can chop ridiculous things, without breaking. It's to limit warranty claims.
sal wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:01 pm

...But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of "deigning in the dark"...

sal

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Naperville » Sun Dec 08, 2019 7:48 pm

These conversations can go on for weeks, and page after page, hundreds of posts, but I only pay attention to what Sal, Larrin, Ankerson and Darby say.
Spyderco Collection: Military (S110V), Bob Lum Darn Dao(CPM-154), Yojimbo 2 (1 in S30V & 2 in 20CV), Sustain(20CV), Native 5(Maxamet), Jumpmaster 2(H1), Province(4V). SHORT LIST: CF Shaman(S90V), Lum Tanto, Native Chief(?), Street Beat (4V at 60+ HRC).

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Re: Newbie steel question.

Postby Ankerson » Sun Dec 08, 2019 8:08 pm

Image



Here is a pretty good example of 5 completely different knives in 5 different steels.

Top to bottom we have 440B, 4V, INFI, 3V and MAXAMET.

All different blade and edge geometries.

All harder use type knives by design except for the bottom one in MAXAMET. One can use any of the top 4 for ANYTHING that is even remotely reasonable in the field.


The thinnest one behind the edge is the top one at .020" and it's hollow ground...

One has to decide what knife they want, the steel is secondary behind the design and it's intended use.


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