Delta 3v Recipe exclusive or shared?

grizzle

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Hey guys, I thought I remember something about Nathan working with someone(s) to develop the delta 3V heat treat. I wasn't sure whether this was even true or who it might have been?

thanks for any input in advance too!
 

JustinFournier

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Shared between specific parties as far as I’ve seen.

I believe currently it’s Dan Keffler and CPK. There was another party involved but I don’t see them using it now. Not sure how that came to be but have my suspicions!
 

Brummie

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Yes, Survive!

I'd not heard of this change, but I see on their Instagram that the latest GSO-6s are still marked delta, but the GSO-12s are not. Whether this means they've switched over in general or just aren't using the delta heat treat on the largest knives, I have no clue.
 

grizzle

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Gotchaa, thank you guys! :thumbsup:

I didn't mean to stir the pot or anything too on CPK forums, was just looking for a little clarification.
 

ManOfSteel89

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Just got an answer from Guy. Was a QC thing on his end. Juice didn’t seem to be worth the squeeze for them maybe
 

Tim the Wizard

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This is the story of Delta 3V, quote from Nathan in 2016 when they first added the Delta symbol to field knives.

RE: https://www.bladeforums.com/threads/ten-3v-field-knives-micarta-g10-colors-delta-3v-sold.1393200/

Some thoughts about 3V and heat treat:
3V was originally developed for the tool and die industry for difficult stamping applications. The heat treat used in that application, which uses the secondary hardening hump, results in good toughness and abrasion resistance in that application and minimal part growth after heat treat, which is critical in tool and die. But, the carbon lean martensite, secondary carbides and retained austenite that decomposes in temper rather than a part of the primary quench all lead to issues with reduced edge stability in a knife edge. The thin geometry of a knife edge is not found in a stamping tool, and tiny areas of weakness become like the perforations in a postage stamp, allowing an edge to roll over, chip and generally behave "mushy". This sort of thing is so common in today's complex super steels and stainless steels that people just accept it as normal.

We have been tweaking 3V for cutlery for a while now, improving it for knives incrementally. There are a number of versions of these tweaks from me and other makers, but they can all be described as a "low temperature tweak". Basically, it involves avoiding the secondary hardening hump, and when done right reduces structures that are harmful to edge stability, but requires addressing retained austenite without a high temper. A happy side effect of leaving the carbon in the martensite is it doesn't tie up all the chromium, leaving 3V very nearly stainless.

All of my 3V over the years has been tweaked in one way or another.

Last year some of us running a tweaked 3V ran into some trouble with some that didn't respond like we expected. Those of us makers who test work from every batch noticed it. It required some re-work, but we addressed the issue, and it prompted us to try to better understand what was going on with the alloy and to pursue a fully optimized 3V. So, Guy Seiferd (Survive Knives), Dan Keffeler and I invested the time and resources to more deeply investigate variables and develop a more complete understanding of the alloy, its quirks, and develop an optimized heat treat protocol for it. This is one reason my output was low earlier in the year, because I'd spent a significant portion of the winter in R&D mode.

Our previous tweaks to 3V had already made it significantly outperform the industry standard, so the fully optimized version is not a night and day improvement over our previous work, but the difference is significant, so in order to differentiate between this optimized 3V and previous tweaks we are putting a Delta symbol with the 3V on the knife to denote change. Otherwise, it would be difficult to differentiate
...
 

Brummie

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Just got an answer from Guy. Was a QC thing on his end. Juice didn’t seem to be worth the squeeze for them maybe
So does that mean that none of the Survive! knives will have it after the GSO-6?
I’m still waiting for a 6 and 12, as well as one other knife, from the original pre-orders back in 2015. Honestly, this may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back for me - after all this time and all the fanfare that they made about the delta heat treat, to abandon it without any announcement or justification is a bit much.

Happy to to take this discussion off-line, if it’s derailing the thread, but I figured it’s still within the scope of the original question.
 

Nathan the Machinist

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Just got an answer from Guy. Was a QC thing on his end. Juice didn’t seem to be worth the squeeze for them maybe

I can't speak for Guy. I can say that there are some potential pitfalls when utilizing the Delta protocol in 3V. Since you're not able to convert retained austenite by using the secondary hardening hump it is quite sensitive to quench rate/depth and cryogenic timing which are variables that can be difficult to control depending on the section of the steel being quenched and the design and layout of the oven and it is also sensitive to heat generated during subsequent processing. I think it might not always play well with manufacturing processes that start with heat treat before grinding the primaries, substantial hard grinding and dry powered sharpening. Simply put, Delta 3V may not scale up very easily and their volumes are much bigger than mine. Outside of the heat treat itself, it almost requires certain manufacturing steps be carried out in a certain order which isn't highly compatible with the most common forms of knife production. Avoiding problems almost requires a different approach, which isn't for everyone.

A discussion stated when I saw an example of some work on IG that did not appear to me to demonstrate the edge stability that we strive for with this process (it's the whole purpose of this process) so I called Guy on the phone. In my discussion with him it sounded like they were dealing with some inconsistencies in the results and they finally made the decision to step back a bit into an older approach to their heat treat. I'm disappointed they're moving away from the Delta protocol. It offers a lot of value and in my opinion the "juice is worth the squeeze" but I'm glad they were able to recognize their manufacturing processes might not be fully compatible with the protocol and move to something that works for them. It's a lot harder to overheat something heat treated utilizing the secondary hardening hump. The last thing that I want is for work that is marked with the Delta symbol to have heat treat issues, so I'm glad they were paying attention and addressed it before it became a problem. This is one of the things I like about Guy and got us working together on 3V heat treat in the first place, we both test our work and look for problems. It's a shame he's abandoning the process because it really was a very valuable asset and I think it's insane not to utilize it, but I also understand that at some point every maker has to look at their business and decide what aspects of their operation are moving them where they want to be and what things are holding them back. Again, I can't speak for Guy, but I know that a lot of people were drowning in 2020 and I imagine that his calculus showed him that the changes needed to reliably implement the Delta protocol wasn't for him.

I haven't tested any of his recent work, but knowing Guy I'm sure he's putting out a good product.
 

Burke

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That’s a bummer. I have several Survive knives and while I steer clear of discussion about their business practices I will say the actual knives are top notch. I have several on order that they seem to be fulfilling now and I’ll be disappointed if they aren’t the Delta 3V I ordered.
 

ManOfSteel89

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I’ll be honest, I never had an issue with the previous 3V they were putting out. I completely understand the Delta is the ultimate (which I why I own a bunch of CPK ) but I think I’ll be happy either way.
 
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