What steel balances attributes best?

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Larrin
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby Larrin » Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:47 pm

The big surprise for me in my CATRA study is I could not tell the difference in sharpenability apart from deburring when using my 400 grit CBN stone. And deburring is more from heat treating than steel.
http://www.KnifeSteelNerds.com - Steel Metallurgy topics related to knives

JD Spydo
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby JD Spydo » Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:00 pm

For an overall, every day blade steel that I find dependable and relatively easy to sharpen I still say it's just hard to be good Ol' VG-10. I have so many different Spyderco models with that steel and most of them are in my "user arsenal".

Also it seems to take a really sweet clean edge for all types of general purpose cutting.

Now my very favorite EDC steel up till now has been M390. No it's not as easy to sharpen as VG-10 but it holds a reliable edge for at least 2 good work days.

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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby TomAiello » Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:07 pm

M390/204p/20cv for Stainless.

4v/v4e for non stainless.

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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby Cycletroll » Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:23 pm

I'm with Vivi on K390's balance of edge retention to ease off sharpening. Too bad it's not stainless :)
That being said, Albatross has hit the nail on the head with S90v. I started carrying an S90v Manix XL two weeks ago and for the life of me can't find a single thing to complain about! Great ergos, great steel, great lock, ambidextrous. Jeez, its good!
I feel much the same way about my KW s90v Mille Exclusive. I could live with either as my only large folder.

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vivi
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby vivi » Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:28 pm

Cycletroll wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:23 pm
I'm with Vivi on K390's balance of edge retention to ease off sharpening. Too bad it's not stainless :)
That being said, Albatross has hit the nail on the head with S90v. I started carrying an S90v Manix XL two weeks ago and for the life of me can't find a single thing to complain about! Great ergos, great steel, great lock, ambidextrous. Jeez, its good!
I feel much the same way about my KW s90v Mille Exclusive. I could live with either as my only large folder.
If you ever decide that S90V XL isn't for you, let me know :p
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Current favorite: S30V DLC Military

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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby Cycletroll » Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:56 pm

vivi wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:28 pm
Cycletroll wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:23 pm
I'm with Vivi on K390's balance of edge retention to ease off sharpening. Too bad it's not stainless :)
That being said, Albatross has hit the nail on the head with S90v. I started carrying an S90v Manix XL two weeks ago and for the life of me can't find a single thing to complain about! Great ergos, great steel, great lock, ambidextrous. Jeez, its good!
I feel much the same way about my KW s90v Mille Exclusive. I could live with either as my only large folder.
If you ever decide that S90V XL isn't for you, let me know :p
Nice try ;)
As I carry and use this i ask myself " now why didn't you buy one of these sooner? "
I'm looking for a backup :)

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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby jkurtz7 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 6:06 pm

I’m a big fan of VG-10, it’s popular in Japan for a reason. Easy to sharpen, takes a wicked edge, and holds it for a reasonable amount of time. I also really like 14c28n and I wish Spyderco would use it. I have one knife in BD1N but haven’t used it so
I don’t have an opinion on that steel yet.
I know lots of people really like PM steels, but for me they aren’t something I’m into.
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby Cycletroll » Sun Oct 18, 2020 6:48 pm

Since implementing diamond and CBN abrasives I've really come to find that most, if not all, steels can rapidly made "very sharp". A corse DMT Diamond and a bit of strop is easily carried and utilized.

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The Mastiff
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby The Mastiff » Sun Oct 18, 2020 6:54 pm

For me it's got to be steels starting with 3v and going through Cruwear and on to 4V. They are all pretty well balanced between wear resistance, toughness and even corrosion resistance.

Truthfully though I can get along with most steels. Some steels I just see no use for me.

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dj moonbat
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby dj moonbat » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:07 pm

steelcity16 wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:17 am
CPM-Cruwear. Tough, easy to sharpen, more than enough wear resistance, pretty close to being stainless, inexpensive relative to other super steels, made in 'merica.
This.

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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby npad69 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:27 pm

Even if LC200n and Cruwear are my favorite stainless and tool steels, I think CTS-XHP is a better all-arounder (in terms of edge retention to sharpening effort ratio, toughness and corrosion resistance for my uses) . As long as I won't be using my knives in any highly corrosive environment, I'd be happy having only this steel.

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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby JRinFL » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:36 pm

JuPaul wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 2:34 pm
Another vote for Cruwear in the non-stainless category. Although hap40 is right up there, too, if a bit less corrosion resistant.

I think spy27 is really going to give s30v a run for its money in the well-balanced stainless category, though. It is extremely easy to sharpen, and seems to have comparable edge retention.
Very much this, however I would add LC200n to the list, possibly AEB-L.
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby TomAiello » Sun Oct 18, 2020 9:59 pm

Cycletroll wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:56 pm
vivi wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:28 pm
Cycletroll wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:23 pm
I'm with Vivi on K390's balance of edge retention to ease off sharpening. Too bad it's not stainless :)
That being said, Albatross has hit the nail on the head with S90v. I started carrying an S90v Manix XL two weeks ago and for the life of me can't find a single thing to complain about! Great ergos, great steel, great lock, ambidextrous. Jeez, its good!
I feel much the same way about my KW s90v Mille Exclusive. I could live with either as my only large folder.
If you ever decide that S90V XL isn't for you, let me know :p
Nice try ;)
As I carry and use this i ask myself " now why didn't you buy one of these sooner? "
I'm looking for a backup :)
s90v is a strong second to M390 for my top stainless spot. I'd be happy to have s90v as my only blade steel if I had to.

joeldworkin307
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby joeldworkin307 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 10:32 pm

For me it's hap40. Gets sharp, stays sharp, cuts everything, and I haven't gotten it past a light gray even when I try to force a patina. Put it in a fixed blade so I can retire every other knife I own.

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Wartstein
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby Wartstein » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:50 pm

joeldworkin307 wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 10:32 pm
For me it's hap40. Gets sharp, stays sharp, cuts everything, and I haven't gotten it past a light gray even when I try to force a patina. Put it in a fixed blade so I can retire every other knife I own.

I am with you. Spydercos HAP 40 is great.

REX 45, which I believe is practically the same steel (just not cladded and run a bit harder as far as I know) in my use seems to hold an edge even longer (probably because it is a bit harder of course), but I don´t have enough experience with it yet.

What´s interesting: While my HAP 40 knives, like yours, just get a "light gray" patina (on the HAP 40 part), my REX 45 Manix has tiny black and red spots all over the place already - I don´t mind that at all (and don´t ever oil neither HAP 40 nor REX 45 blades), but it is interesting to see this difference...
Top three going by pocket-time: Endura 4 in VG 10/Micarta-scales; Stretch 1 in VG 10; Endura 4 in HAP 40

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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby Wartstein » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:57 pm

Larrin wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:47 pm
The big surprise for me in my CATRA study is I could not tell the difference in sharpenability apart from deburring when using my 400 grit CBN stone. And deburring is more from heat treating than steel.

Larrin, I am pretty sure I got you wrong on this - ?:

- You found that on a 400 grit CBN stone it takes about the same time and number of passes (or howsoever one chooses to measure this) to bring a knife from a certain "degree of dull" to a certain "degree of sharp" (again, howsoever one defines "dull" and "sharp") regardless of the steel the blade is made of ?!?
Top three going by pocket-time: Endura 4 in VG 10/Micarta-scales; Stretch 1 in VG 10; Endura 4 in HAP 40

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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby standy99 » Mon Oct 19, 2020 12:08 am

H1 as most of my attributes are corrosion resistant.

M4 stays sharp for a touch longer than most. Don't mind sharpening and don't find it that hard.

Ex butcher so don't find anything hard to sharpen. ;)

S30V is a great steal for any knife and have some great fixed blades in it.

Steel game is slowly getting silly with prices for me. Good to see them but no need to buy them as I already have 6 lifetimes of knives. ( Now if I could magically change a few knives steel to something newer . WAIT I can with a mule........ :D )
Im a vegetarian as technically cows are made of grass and water.

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Wartstein
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby Wartstein » Mon Oct 19, 2020 12:13 am

jkurtz7 wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 6:06 pm
I’m a big fan of VG-10, it’s popular in Japan for a reason. Easy to sharpen, takes a wicked edge, and holds it for a reasonable amount of time. I also really like 14c28n and I wish Spyderco would use it. I have one knife in BD1N but haven’t used it so
I don’t have an opinion on that steel yet.
I know lots of people really like PM steels, but for me they aren’t something I’m into.

Welcome to the forum! :)

Which knife in BD1N do you have?
And I hope you´ll use it soon and share your opinions on that steel! As said before, I personally was really surprised in a positive way... sharpens up very easy to a "scary" level (at least for my standards, not a master sharpener at all) and takes a lot longer to dull than I´d have expected...
Top three going by pocket-time: Endura 4 in VG 10/Micarta-scales; Stretch 1 in VG 10; Endura 4 in HAP 40

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zuludelta
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby zuludelta » Mon Oct 19, 2020 1:26 am

The attributes in a folding knife steel that I prioritize are (in no particular order): edge retention/wear resistance, corrosion resistance, ease of sharpening, and affordability. I don't particularly find exemplary toughness to be all that important for the work I do with folding knives—toughness above that of N690Co is sufficient for me.

So given all that, the most well-balanced steels for my purposes are VG-10 & S30V/S35VN. I like VG-10 because it's easy for me to get it screaming sharp and repair, it's quite corrosion resistant, holds a working edge a decent amount of time, and can be found in many of my favourite knife designs. The same thing can be said for S30V/S35VN—it keeps its edge significantly longer, of course, but the trade off is it's more expensive (strangely enough, I don't find it significantly harder to sharpen than VG-10).

I also like CTS-BD1N: it's very, very corrosion resistant (almost S110V-level, according to Larrin's Thermo-Calc modeling), and while its chemistry predicts less wear resistance than VG-10, in my experience, I find it holds an edge only a little less than VG-10 (perhaps Spyderco heat treats BD1N harder than it does VG-10?). I'm also a fan of LC200N, but I tend to think of it as more of a specialty steel than an all-rounder.

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Wartstein
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Re: What steel balances attributes best?

Postby Wartstein » Mon Oct 19, 2020 2:54 am

Albatross wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 1:39 pm
K390 hands down. I still can't believe how easily it sharpens, considering the edge retention it provides.

If stainless is necessary, then M390/204P/20CV are the most balanced overall, but S90V takes the cake for me. It's about as stainless as S30V, but has exceptional edge retention and is surprisingly easy to sharpen. S90V sharpens more like a non-stainless steel, and with a high degree of sharpness.

Since I know you also have REX45 knives (question also to all others who own both REX45 and K390)

- How does K390 compare to REX45 concerning both edge holding and "sharpenability" ?

I never tried K390, but am really impressed by REX45. In my use it seems to hold an edge longer than my HAP 40 blades (what could be expected, given that REX 45 is run a bit harder) while I have no problems to touch it up on the SM.
Is K390 even better?
Top three going by pocket-time: Endura 4 in VG 10/Micarta-scales; Stretch 1 in VG 10; Endura 4 in HAP 40


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