Does LC 200N work harden?

Discussion in 'Spyderco' started by sogflash, Dec 13, 2019.

  1. sogflash


    Aug 28, 2011
    I have a plan to do remove a lot of steel on a LC 200N blade from Spyderco. Does it work harden?

    Besides getting it to hot and not getting cut, are there anything else I should watch out for?
  2. tomhosang


    Feb 17, 2017
    I don't think it does. H1 does though.
  3. Sal Glesser

    Sal Glesser Moderator Moderator

    Dec 27, 1998
    Not to my knowledge.

    cbrstar, trackstar55 and loon#r like this.
  4. blame it on god

    blame it on god

    Feb 21, 2013
    LC200N is no maxamet or K390, but I'm quite happy with the performance of my spydiechef. I'd say it does slightly better than VG-10.
    loon#r and Officer's Match like this.
  5. Officer's Match

    Officer's Match Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 23, 2013
    I absolutely LOVE my Spydiechef.
    Striven82 and loon#r like this.
  6. bearfacedkiller

    bearfacedkiller Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 23, 2014
    Work hardening is caused by plastic deformation. Grinding will cause very little of it, especially when using a coarse abrasive. Burnishing can happen when grinding or abrading but I doubt that it would make much difference and that only happens on the surface of the steel. Internally it does not change.

    I personally don’t think that H1 work hardens either. If it does then either I am missing something or it defies the laws of physics. That is just my opinion though and many folks disagree.
    marrenmiller, insta9ves and John_0917 like this.
  7. John_0917


    Apr 15, 2014
    No it doesn’t, there has been an actual study/evaluation done by Larrin (Knife Steel Nerds) that is as “scientific” as anything out there...the gist of it was that:
    A) H1 does not work harden
    B) the edge is not any harder than the spine, some of the edges tested were actually the softest areas on the whole blade.
    C) there’s nothing special about H1 except that it’s hard enough to make a decent knife steel while being extremely corrosion resistant. Most steels that are that low on carbon and/or that corrosion resistant can’t get hard enough to make a good blade steel. H1 makes a decent one, albeit not that good.

    Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation out there, sadly Janich (who works for Spyderco) keeps repeating a story about work hardening H1 and there’s really no way it can be true.

    As for LC, it is hardened more conventionally and the nitrogen level is amped up by the PESR process to a level that is high enough for a small amount of chromium nitrides to form, this helps wear resistance (a small amount). There are other nitrogen steels that have much higher levels of nitrides, be it vanadium or chromium.
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2019
  8. Shmackey


    May 5, 2000
    I'm a big VG10 fan, and I think my Autonomy in LC200N has better edge retention.
  9. Danke42


    Feb 10, 2015
    I found I can get my Spidiechef hair whittling sharp on just a regular sharpmaker. Given the rust resistance of LC200NI'd say it's an exceptional steel.

    Contrasted to my Ladybugs in H1; while I can get them to feel as sharp they won't cut hair with the same ease.
  10. DeadboxHero

    DeadboxHero Triple B Handmade, Custom Knives Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Mar 22, 2014
    I did think it was wild that the H1 is not heat treated but is work hardened by rollingto flat bar sizes at the mill.

    Its nice to see the urban myth of work hardning plain edge H1 with special sharpening and grinding laid to rest.

    It's just a Austenitic Stainless steel.

    It looked like in order to boost the hardness a guy would have to do some redneck cold forging with a hammer and reduce/compress the metal.
    Doesn't seem like there would be any control to that and it would just be brittle if not break in the process.

    (Hold my beer :p:D)

    I like Lc200n much better.

    The CrN,Cr2N chromium nitrides are harder than the basic Cr7C3 Chromium Carbides we usually get. This is why we see such a big boost in performance.

    However Vanadium Nitrides are softer than Vanadium carbides, but much finer thanks to the process used to create them and some inherit qualities to nitrogen.

    VN is still harder than Cr2N and other softer Carbides However.

    Last edited: Dec 19, 2019
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  11. insta9ves


    Apr 3, 2007
    I always wondered the anecdotal reports of godly cutting performance of serrated H1 were just placebo effect based on some passing remarks from the forums. My personal experience with a couple of serrated tasman salt tells me that they can’t really hold edge half as well as advertised. One of the got severe edge roll from cutting small strands of copper wires.
    I’d probably trust Larrin more on this.
  12. ekastanis


    Jan 16, 2018
    during edge grinding/sharpening.
    marrenmiller and Larrin like this.
  13. Sal Glesser

    Sal Glesser Moderator Moderator

    Dec 27, 1998
    I would like to hear why H1 in serrated edges cuts more paper in a CATRA than just about any other steel?

    AF, craytab and 5-by-5 like this.
  14. James Y

    James Y

    Feb 18, 1999
    Those who say that H1 can’t hold an edge at all must be talking about PE H1. Because my SE H1 blades mostly hold their edges very well. I have rolled the serrations on my PAC Salt and Atlantic Salt, but they were easily fixed with my SM. I’ve never rolled the SE edges on any of my Tasman Salts.

    That said, I personally like LC200N better than H1. It’s good in both PE and SE, and it seems to “age” better with use than H1 does (IMO).

  15. jpm2


    Nov 19, 2014
    Good question. What other steels have been CATRA tested with serrated edges?
  16. Sal Glesser

    Sal Glesser Moderator Moderator

    Dec 27, 1998
    We test them all. The nitrogen steels with serrated edges are usually longer lasting edge retention.

  17. John_0917


    Apr 15, 2014
    He didn’t have a conclusion in that area...I’m curious how a well balanced toughness/edge retention steel like Cruwear or CPM154 performs serrated on a CATRA. Also the low toughness/high wear resistance alloys like ZDP and S110V
  18. Sal Glesser

    Sal Glesser Moderator Moderator

    Dec 27, 1998
    Hi John,

    Generally, the serrated version will cut about twice the plain edge.

  19. craytab

    craytab Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 26, 2012
    I would as well.
  20. Danke42


    Feb 10, 2015
    Well I mean not to be obvious but if the serrated one cuts better then it's the serrations.

    The why is likely because having the peaks of the serrations contact first they act like birds flying in echelon.

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