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Sorting High Carbon Steel by Carbon Content


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I am getting information regarding the various steels used to make files...1095 and a higher carbon steel having a carbon content of about 1.25% C. I would like to be able to tell these apart before using them. The only method I am considering is cooling two samples ( after a long soak) together to make pearlite and look at the grain boundaries assuming they will be quite different ( more cementite in the higher carbon sample, maybe a grain size difference).

 

Is there a simpler method I am missing? Spark tests seems very similar. I would like to avoid an elaborate heating and cooling process for each file.

Thanks

Jan

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If you have a known piece of steel to compare the others to you could see if they spark the same on a grinding wheel. The higher carbon steels tend to have a thicker but shorter spark pattern.

 

Doug

HELP...I'm a twenty year old trapped in the body of an old man!!!

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Nicholson and simmonds are made from 1.22% steel, if I remember right, most modern files are most likely this, anything old is most likely 1095 or equivalent steel. Without a getting a sample tested, it will be very difficult to determine what its from exactly. I've suggested to aldo on another thread about supplying the 1.22% steel so those who like using file steels will jave the steel at a known composition, but I suspect we will need more to want the steel as well.

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If you have a known piece of steel to compare the others to you could see if they spark the same on a grinding wheel. The higher carbon steels tend to have a thicker but shorter spark pattern.

 

Doug

 

Doug,

I have some Admiral 1095 and some files I know are very high carbon ..the spark test on a non quenched area is very similar.

 

Steven,

There is a specification for 1095 which states a carbon content of 1.22 ..that be may be what is still in use. Here is an article on file steel which will clarify the record unless the 1095 the author mentions is actually 1.22 %C.

 

 

Jan

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Sorry, Jan,

I do not have any other information on how to differ a higher level of carbon in highcarb steels (UHC) other than sending it to the lab, which is quite expensive.

Here in Germany we have some good old files (by Pferd, Dick and others and french Grobet or swiss Vallorbe) mostly made from :

1.2008 - 140Cr3 / 140Cr2

C 1,35 - 1,50

Si 0,15 - 0,30

Mn 0,25 - 0,40

P max. 0,035

S max. 0,035

Cr 0,40 - 0,70

 

or

1.2002 - 125Cr1

C 1,20 - 1,30

Si 0,15 - 0,30

Mn 0,25 - 0,40

P max. 0,030

S max. 0,030

Cr 0,30 - 0,40

 

it is said that the longer ones >30cm where made from a 0.7%C-steel

 

and the spark-test is not very distinquishing with UHC's, which is too bad...

best whishes for the NEw Year

Edited by Jokke

Jokke

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Sorry, Jan,

I do not have any other information on how to differ a higher level of carbon in highcarb steels (UHC) other than sending it to the lab, which is quite expensive.

Here in Germany we have some good old files (by Pferd, Dick and others and french Grobet or swiss Vallorbe) mostly made from :

1.2008 - 140Cr3 / 140Cr2

C 1,35 - 1,50

Si 0,15 - 0,30

Mn 0,25 - 0,40

P max. 0,035

S max. 0,035

Cr 0,40 - 0,70

 

or

1.2002 - 125Cr1

C 1,20 - 1,30

Si 0,15 - 0,30

Mn 0,25 - 0,40

P max. 0,030

S max. 0,030

Cr 0,30 - 0,40

 

it is said that the longer ones >30cm where made from a 0.7%C-steel

 

and the spark-test is not very distinquishing with UHC's, which is too bad...

best whishes for the NEw Year

 

Jokke,

Thank you for the information and a very good year to you.

Jan

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