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Thread: KaBar Becker 1095 Cro-Van vs 1095 steel what is the difference?

  1. #1

    KaBar Becker 1095 Cro-Van vs 1095 steel what is the difference?


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    Most knives are listed as 1095 steel. KaBar Beckers are listed as 1095 Cro-Van. What is the difference?

  2. #2
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    No idea if this is the true 100% story or not...but this is one of the hundreds of links I found when I Googled "1095 CroVan Steel''. Took me like 30 seconds.











    Question as answered by KA-BAR:

    I’ll give you the 50cent tour of our steel and hope that it answers your question.

    Yes, our steel is indeed, the now defunct, Sharon Steel Co. 170-06.

    Long ago (way before Mike Stewart) the knife industry did in fact call Sharon 170-06 : Cro-Van or 1095 Cro-Van or 1095CV. Not just as a marketing name but actually on POs and specs and shop documents.

    Notice that Case also calls their carbon steel: Cro-Van. A look through old turn-of-the century advertising literature and catalogs will confirm this for you. Also remember that Case, KA-BAR, Alcas (Cutco) were all related (Not to mention Platts (Western), Cattaraugus, Robeson, Kinfolks ,Champlin, Crandal, et al.) All located in South Western NY/North Western PA. So there was a lot of cross- over of personnel and knowledge between the companies. We are still on very friendly terms with Case even though the blood connection no longer exists. Also Sharon Steel was in Sharon, PA. A look on the map will show you why they supplied the turn-of-the-century knife industry.

    If you look at the Chemical composition of 170-06, it is basically AISI 1095 with the addition of small amounts of Chrome, Vanadium, and smaller amounts of Nickel and Moly so the term 1095 Cro-Van is not off base.

    For many years we called Cro-Van just 1095 in our advertising literature, but went back to calling it 1095 Cro-Van as it is a better steel than just straight 1095,

    and we felt there were advantages to making the distinction. We did that in 2005. We make no attempt to hide the fact that it is 170-06. Nor do we make extravagant claims for the steel.

    1095 Cro-Van is just the name we have always used.

    I hope this answers your question. If you have further, feel free to e-mail me directly at pault@ka-bar.com



    Best Regards,


    Paul Tsujimoto

    Sr. Engineer

    Product Development & Quality

    Ka-Bar Knives

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    Some seem to use the search function better than others.

  4. #4
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    Cro-Van = chromium vanadium.

    Kabar's particular version of 1095 is tough and can be made wickedly sharp with a subtly "toothy" edge.

    1095 is one of my favorite steels

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    Like I posted in another thread....type "RTAK II Fail" into Yoube and see the difference for yourself....

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Warrior View Post
    Some seem to use the search function better than others.
    Some also have more trouble coming up with valuable reasons for a thread than others, but still want their BH #. Truth be told, I decided I wanted my BH # about a month before I posted my first thread in here, because I just didn't have anything worth saying.

    To the OP, I don't know if we're right at what you're playing at or not, but if I might make a suggestion, posting tons of worthless threads or questions that could be easily answered by a simple google search will just annoy people. However, if you really want to become a Beckerhead, I've noticed that people around here really like pictures of Beckers. Go on a hike, take pictures of your Becker knives stuck in various places. Tell us a story. Cook something. Use some outdoors skills. Show us how you build a fire. Mod your Becker and show it off. Strip and patina, make your own scales, etc. There are plenty of things that make a thread worth reading. Is it too much to ask to read through the threads here, and make a thread similar to one that you yourself found worth reading?

    Another suggestion. Put a Becker through a serious destruction test like BRab did with his BK2. That's one of my favorite threads of all time.

    Anyways, the two responses you got here should pretty much sum it up. READ first, post second. You may find it interesting to do a google search and find out what chromium and vanadium mean with respect to blades. If you're really interested in metallurgy, you may find it pretty cool. I did.
    Beckerhead #149
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  7. #7
    Great reply and it answered much. 1095 CroVan with its small amounts of Chrome, Vanadium, and smaller amounts of Nickel and Moly might be just a tad more stainless (weather resistance)?

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    You may find this thread useful. I found this one when I was starting out here.

    http://zknives.com/knives/articles/knifesteelfaq.shtml

    "Chromium: Added for wear resistance, hardenability, and (most importantly) for corrosion resistance. A steel with at least 13% chromium is typically deemed "stainless" steel, though another definition says the steel must have at least 11.5% *free* chromium (as opposed to being tied up in carbides) to be considered "stainless". Despite the name, all steel can rust if not maintained properly. Adding chromium in high amounts decreases toughness. Chromium is a carbide-former, which is why it increases wear resistance.

    Vanadium: Contributes to wear resistance and hardenability, and as a carbide former (in fact, vanadium carbides are the hardest carbides) it contribute to wear resistance. It also refines the grain of the steel, which contributes to toughness and allows the blade to take a very sharp edge. A number of steels have vanadium, but M2, Vascowear, and CPM T440V and 420V (in order of increasing amounts) have high amounts of vanadium. BG-42's biggest difference with ATS-34 is the addition of vanadium."
    Beckerhead #149
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    Mr Becker attributes the selection of cro van to it having a toothier, more aggressive edge than plain 1095. It's slightly more rust resistant too, but the was secondary to its cutting performance. That is what I gathered from listening to him talk about the new shorts in an outdoor interview from the youtoobz.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crimsonfalcon07 View Post
    Some also have more trouble coming up with valuable reasons for a thread than others, but still want their BH #. Truth be told, I decided I wanted my BH # about a month before I posted my first thread in here, because I just didn't have anything worth saying.

    To the OP, I don't know if we're right at what you're playing at or not, but if I might make a suggestion, posting tons of worthless threads or questions that could be easily answered by a simple google search will just annoy people. However, if you really want to become a Beckerhead, I've noticed that people around here really like pictures of Beckers. Go on a hike, take pictures of your Becker knives stuck in various places. Tell us a story. Cook something. Use some outdoors skills. Show us how you build a fire. Mod your Becker and show it off. Strip and patina, make your own scales, etc. There are plenty of things that make a thread worth reading. Is it too much to ask to read through the threads here, and make a thread similar to one that you yourself found worth reading?

    Another suggestion. Put a Becker through a serious destruction test like BRab did with his BK2. That's one of my favorite threads of all time.

    Anyways, the two responses you got here should pretty much sum it up. READ first, post second. You may find it interesting to do a google search and find out what chromium and vanadium mean with respect to blades. If you're really interested in metallurgy, you may find it pretty cool. I did.
    Yeah, it's getting a little ridiculous. He sees people's responses, and still posts useless stuff. This should give a clue about serious thread starts. Some just a few minutes apart. Fun, fun:

    02-05-2012 12:17 AM
    02-05-2012 12:20 AM
    02-05-2012 06:28 PM
    02-07-2012 10:47 PM
    02-09-2012 06:32 PM
    02-09-2012 11:29 PM
    02-09-2012 11:32 PM
    Yesterday 01:10 AM
    Today 01:02 AM
    Today 01:04 AM
    Today 01:33 AM
    Today 09:28 PM

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by SoldMyHat View Post
    Mr Becker attributes the selection of cro van to it having a toothier, more aggressive edge than plain 1095. It's slightly more rust resistant too, but the was secondary to its cutting performance. That is what I gathered from listening to him talk about the new shorts in an outdoor interview from the youtoobz.
    Ethan Becker would be the expert. Thanks for the info. I would have bet on rust resistant being #1 The more aggressive edge than plain 1095 sounds even better

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    I'm in. Thanks for the chance!

    Beckerhead 65


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    Quote Originally Posted by tradewater View Post
    I'm in. Thanks for the chance!

    Damn, gonna be hard to beat that photo for the win.

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    Really it's an honor just to be nominated!

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    ..and away we go......
    Beckerhead 65


    "Are you gonna skin that smokewagon or just stand there and bleed?" Mr. Earp

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nsvens89 View Post

    Really it's an honor just to be nominated!
    Haha, that still makes me lmao.

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    Trade, that's the second time tonight you've nearly made me spew my drink on my keyboard. Sheesh!
    Beckerhead #149
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    Tax Season Sale! Khukuri, Camp knife, Large and Small Persians, all in the Exchange.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nsvens89 View Post

    Really it's an honor just to be nominated!
    You sir, are my hero. I hope you can live with giving me an aneurism.
    Beckerhead 65


    "Are you gonna skin that smokewagon or just stand there and bleed?" Mr. Earp

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