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Michael Chaddock

304 / 308 Stainless

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I put this question in the Beginners section because I am unfamiliar with stainless steel as far as blade making goes. How would 304 SS or 308 SS work for a stock removal blade? And, if applicable, what heat treat process would be best? I only ask because I have access to a large amount for little to no cost on my part, and although I personally prefer carbon steel, it might be fun to play with. Thanks in advance for the help!

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Posted (edited)

doesn't work at all...it's low carbon.  stainless steel groups for knife making are usually the 440C

a distant 2nd would be the semi-stainless tool steels like D2 W1 O1 etc...

When it comes to D2 tool steel I can tell you from experience you better have a lot of patience....because it is inherently abrasive resistant due to the chromium and vanadium it takes a lot of effort to get a good working profile...the upside is once you get a sharp edge it holds the edge really well

The best you could use it for would be fittings or bolsters

The stretch would be if you're really good at san mai you could use it as the exterior cladding to sandwich a piece of high carbon steel in the middle for the blade edge

Edited by JeffM

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80crv2 isnt stainless. D2 is closer to stainless than 80crv2.

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1 hour ago, Michael Chaddock said:

I put this question in the Beginners section because I am unfamiliar with stainless steel as far as blade making goes. How would 304 SS or 308 SS work for a stock removal blade? And, if applicable, what heat treat process would be best? I only ask because I have access to a large amount for little to no cost on my part, and although I personally prefer carbon steel, it might be fun to play with. Thanks in advance for the help!

It may not be impossible......but I dont think you are gonna heat treat any without an oven. Stainless is much more complicated than carbon steel.

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Jeff and Jeremy, thank you both! That confirmed my suspicions!

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2 hours ago, Kreg Whitehead said:

It may not be impossible......but I dont think you are gonna heat treat any without an oven. Stainless is much more complicated than carbon steel.

It's pretty much impossible.  The 300 series is not hardenable. ;)  And yes, for the stainless alloys used in knives you will need an oven to get the best results, or any results with some of them.  

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On 3/25/2019 at 12:10 PM, Alan Longmire said:

It's pretty much impossible.  The 300 series is not hardenable. ;)  And yes, for the stainless alloys used in knives you will need an oven to get the best results, or any results with some of them.  

I meant stainless in general......

 

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That's what I assumed you meant, I just didn't want anyone reading this to think they could maybe make a blade out of 300-series stainless if they only had an oven.  

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