Jump to content
JeffM

303 Stainless Steel

Recommended Posts

Does anyone have experience using 303 stainless steel in knife making...

I have acquired close to 80 lbs of 303 stainless scrap and drop material

Wondering if it's any good for knives

Any information would be helpful

Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is not a blade steel by any means since it will not harden.  It can be used as the outer jacket in san mai blades, and for fittings, etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wouldn't even use it for san mai, as it has a lot of sulfur (generally specs list >=0.15%, but I have seen 0.4%) which you wouldn't want to leach into the center material.  Good for fittings though.  The 303 is basically 304 with sulfur for improved machine-ability.  Sulfur makes things more brittle, and since 304 is very gummy to machine, a little extra brittleness puts it more in line with machining mild steel (note, "more in line", not "just like").  Blade steel is already brittle enough, you don't want to increase brittleness at all.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As Jerrod says, it's basically a free-cutting version of 304, which is about the most common (and least-exciting) stainless steel out there.

For machinability, it's streets ahead of 304 or 316, making it great for fittings. Back when I used to play with a little Myford ML7 lathe, it was pretty much the only stainless worth putting in the chuck.

I'd keep some of it for stuff that needs machining and try to trade the rest. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks...so guards and pommels but keep it away from the blade edge since it is not a hardenable material

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...