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Damasteel vs Damascus...close to ATS-34 ..?

Oct 31, 2000
Just wondering if anyone has had any experience lately with Damasteel?
Wondering how it holds up vs Damascus?

I hear it acts/feels very similar to an ATS-34 but doesn't rust as much as regular Damascus? (apparently even stainless Damascus rusts.. ?)

Feedback appreciated guys


I have one Damasteel knife- Jens Anso's naked DamaClaw model. Used only for mundane cutting chores it has held up very well. Regular passes across ceramic sticks keep it very sharp, and minimal maintenance has kept it stain and rust free. And folks who don't care about knives comment on the beauty of the material, mine is the Odin's eye pattern.
All steel can rust. Stain resistant steels have have very high concentration of free chromium (more than 12%) which makes them more or less 'stainless' compared to low chromium steels. As for damasteel being 'similar' to ATS34, I dunno. Any steel is a compromise of physical and functional properties.

You may enjoy reading this thread from a couple of months ago on this very topic Is Damasteel a user friendly Damascus?

Be sure to follow the links in that thread for much more detailed answers to your questions.


[This message has been edited by Paracelsus (edited 02-01-2001).]
Damesteel is a mix of powdersteel copies of ATS-34 and 12C27. It basically feels like ATS-34, but it should rust less and take a sharpen edge, but that difference is like the difference between ATS-34 and 154-CM... minimal.

Compared to damascus... What damascus?
Damascus can be made with nickel sheeths, even beercaps. Those won't cut good, probably even worse then 18/8. But you can call them damascus. If you consider damascus with like .9 % carbon(52100 and L-6 for example), and well forged, well then damasteel will cut worse, but rust much less.
Overall, damasteel is like ATS-34, while damascus steels are like carbon steels.

greetz, bart.

"If the world wouldn't SUCK, we'd all fall off !"

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Thanks guys on the info. Good point about what kind of Damascus Bart

I'll also check out those links Para,
'preciate it

My Lamprey folder has an RWL34/PMC27 Odinseye blade. He claims that the material was so abrasive that it would wear down the stainless bearings he was using for ball detents, and he had to go to a tungsten carbide bullet instead. It's been a very nice performer for me.
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Bart student:
Damesteel is a mix of powdersteel copies of ATS-34 and 12C27. It basically feels like ATS-34, but it should rust less and take a sharper edge, but that difference is like the difference between ATS-34 and 154-CM... minimal.

Damasteel is described as a powdered yet layered version of ATS-34 and 12C27.

Problem is, 12C27 has a low (0.6%) carbon level compared to 1.05% for ATS-34. That means during heat treat, carbon will migrate (decarburization) from the ATS-34 to the 12C27, resulting in, at the boundaries and in general, a soup that is somewhere in between the two steels.

So, that means that the BEST a damascus steel can perform is going to be similar to the best steel in the mix, only degraded by some amount. I.e., Damasteel should perform somewhere between ATS-34 and 12C27. And that, my friends, is back to just "ok" performance, something like GIN-1 or say AUS-8 or AUS-10. But it sure looks great.

I realize this might pop a lot of people's damascus bubble, but it's true, just like "heat treat matters most" is true. Might as well cut through the smoke and hype sooner rather than later.

The damascus cutting effect, i.e. that supposed extra cutting effect from the layers in a ladder pattern acting like tiny serrations, is mostly undetectable, mostly lore. After all, your cutting edge is pretty smooth typically. You can achieve a more pronounced effect by using a diamond stone to get a biting/toothy edge.

I have a Damasteel blade by Darrel Ralph, and in fact, it takes a pretty good edge IF I use a diamond stone, but nothing like a 440V or 420V edge. And in fact, if I tested the blade, I'm pretty confident it would underperform a well heat treated ATS-34 blade.

So, what gives. If you want both looks and performance, you must eventually see that Mike Norris is the current king of stainless performance damascus: he makes a stainless damascus sandwich (San Mai) with 440V and 420V as the core. This looks great, and should perform a notch below 440V or 420V with a good heat treat.

[This message has been edited by rdangerer (edited 02-03-2001).]