How many of you have knives with 154-cm steel?

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clipiteer
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How many of you have knives with 154-cm steel?

Postby clipiteer » Fri Mar 08, 2002 1:00 am

I was just curious, because I know nothing about this steel except that Microtech and M.O.D. both seem to use it a lot. So, please let me know what you like and don't like about it. Thanks.

Blade Santa Cruz
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Postby Blade Santa Cruz » Sun Mar 10, 2002 12:45 am

Spyderholic is crrect; CM154 was developed when ATS34 was temporarily unavailable.

I love both materials. They have superb edge-holding and outstanding corrosion resistance. The down-side is that you don't want either to get really dull, although modern diamond hones make sharpening far less of a chore than it once was.

The real problem and why you hear a lot of complaints about the steels is that the ATS34 was developed to have good strength at high temperatures, a quality you don't need in knives. Unfortunately, this makes it very tricky to heat-treat correctly and a lot of small knife-makers don't have the equipment to reliably develop the potential of such steel. A poor heat-treat job means inferior reliability and/or sub-par performance, so a lot of problems arose. Since these materials are hard on belts as well, a lot of makers have gotten away from them, even if they have outstanding potential.

clipiteer
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Postby clipiteer » Sun Mar 10, 2002 12:16 pm

Oh. Technically, you don't want <b>any </b> knife to get really dull, but what you're saying is that it's a pain to sharpen? How does it hold an edge?

James Y
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Postby James Y » Sun Mar 10, 2002 1:02 pm

154CM and ATS34 hold an edge less long than CPM440V for example, but longer than most other stainless steels. For me, I find (depending on the individual blade)that ATS34 and 154CM in satin finish can pick up rust easier than some other stainlesses, such as the AUS steels, CPM440V, maybe VG10 and definitely 440C.

Also, if heat treated up high, 154CM and ATS34 can be brittle at times. Sometimes they can be harder to resharpen, but I find that also depends on how the blade is ground to begin with, plus the heat treat.
Jim

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SpyderNut
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Postby SpyderNut » Sun Mar 10, 2002 1:20 pm

Ah, this age old discussion.......

ATS-34 and 154CM are VERY close in their steel makeup. If you look at a Spyderco steel chart, you will see that these two steels have almost identical components. ATS-34 is a Japanese steel that was brought in to take over where 154CM took off. IMHO, ATS-34 was one of the best things that ever hit the knife industry. That and CPM440V. It just doesn't get any better.

Spydernut

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J Smith
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Postby J Smith » Sun Mar 10, 2002 1:21 pm

The only one I have with ATS34 is thr Wegner and I have not had it long enough to tell how well I like the steel.I would have to say that AUS 8,10 and 6 are my favs.440V holds an edge very well but it is hard to sharpen and I can't get a really fine edge on it.No matter what it seems to be a little grainy but even like this it will go through heavier cuts with ease.Cutting paper it will snag a little.

}{ Jeff

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Postby Blade Santa Cruz » Sun Mar 10, 2002 1:35 pm

My experience is that ATS34/CM154 steel holds an edge very well and has corrosion resistance that outshines most other stainless materials if manufactured with good quality control. A chromium content of 14% backs me up on this point. I do give my knives at least minimal care in that I clean them and lightly oil them after use. With such treatment, I've never developed pitting or rusting on an ATS34/CM154 blade, so my experience is different than Jim's.

The big trade-off is in toughness. These steels are not a good choice for heavy chopping blades. The edge can chip out more easily than with many other steels and the knives will be more susceptable to damage through abuse or crude handling. They are good choices as steels designed strictly for cutting instruments but they make lousy pry-bars or screwdrivers.

It is not the easiest steel to resharpen and heat-treating is tricky as I said before. This gives mixed results and anomalies in performance. I agree completely with Jim on those points. A poor heat treatment can result in a poor knife and is not a fair example of how the steel performs.

sam the man..
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Postby sam the man.. » Sun Mar 10, 2002 9:26 pm

Ummmm... the similarities are there.. I have a coupla Microtechs.. They are interesting! <img src="spyder.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle border=0><img src="smile.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle border=0><img src="spyder.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle border=0>

Sam

have surgical scars will travel..


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