Mora Knives: Carbon vs. stainless

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Dec 7, 2019
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Been looking at the Companion knives. I understand both have their places, but how are they functionally different? From what I understand, while the carbon version is more susceptible to rust, it’s also easier to sharpen. Forced patina is also possible on the carbon version.
 

Hal

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Feb 26, 1999
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Stainless for food - carbon for everything else.
They are cheap so - getting one of each is simple & cheap.

(I'm waiting for my wife to stay away from the refrigerator long enough for me to plunge my Mora carbon into the package of hamburger & leave it there overnight.....I know butcher's knives & hunter's knives get a nice dark stain from blood on them...I'm just afraid if I get caught doing it, it won't be the hamburger blood on mine! :O ) ;).
 
Joined
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Stainless for food - carbon for everything else.
They are cheap so - getting one of each is simple & cheap.

(I'm waiting for my wife to stay away from the refrigerator long enough for me to plunge my Mora carbon into the package of hamburger & leave it there overnight.....I know butcher's knives & hunter's knives get a nice dark stain from blood on them...I'm just afraid if I get caught doing it, it won't be the hamburger blood on mine! :O ) ;).
Never heard of this method though. I know of putting mustard on carbon steel or wrapping it in vinegar for a bit.
 

EngrSorenson

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I've been looking into maybe getting a Mora companion, myself.
I believe I've read that the carbon steel is in fact 1095 (or equivalent) with a decent heat treatment up to 58-60 HRC, which should make for a good knife.
The stainless is something like 12C27 or 14C28N, which is heat treated to a softer 56-58 HRC, which should still make a good knife.

Personally I enjoy carbon steel, and at those prices and specs it would be hard to pass up a carbon steel knife.
I certainly couldn't throw shade on the stainless, however.

The only reason I haven't pulled the trigger is the fact that I already have an ESEE 3 fixed blade in S35VN, which I selected after doing a lot of research thinking that this would be the fixed blade knife I would use. How foolish of me to think I wouldn't keep shopping...
 

Henry Beige

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You could get a 511 in carbon and the Bahco carpenter knife in stainless fo about the price of a Companion. You can try both steels sise-by-side and when you are ready to make the big splurge on the Companion, you will have some idea of which way to go and what you are getting. You will have about $35 tied up in Moras, but you can recoup some of that in the secondary market.
 

AdamFuzzyballs

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Mar 16, 2015
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Not to be stupid, but I have a mora that I SWORE was carbon steel. I’ve had it for years, and it has a dull gray patina, but I surprised myself yesterday when I saw that it was actually stainless. I don’t think there’s too much difference given the geometry of the blades
 

MyLegsAreOk

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Both are good, but let me tell you something about Sandvik12. I have a friend who is not too nice to knives, or anything, I doubt he cleaned or washed his Opinel ever and uses it to open boxes and cut tape etc etc. That knife keeps a sharp edge very long considering his use, has no oxidation, and is easy to whip back up in to shame. There is no shame EVER getting a Sanvik12 and 14 is even better. Carbon is much harder yes, but if you consider the resilience of the Sandvik offerings, you might just want to go with stainless. I would, because for anything that requires super hard use I have another tool for that.
 

Henry Beige

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Not to be stupid, but I have a mora that I SWORE was carbon steel. I’ve had it for years, and it has a dull gray patina, but I surprised myself yesterday when I saw that it was actually stainless. I don’t think there’s too much difference given the geometry of the blades

Somewhere here, I think I read a report of some mis-marked Mora blades.
 

Hal

Joined
Feb 26, 1999
Messages
550
Never heard of this method though. I know of putting mustard on carbon steel or wrapping it in vinegar for a bit.
The effect of blood on carbon steel came up once in conversation - about, of all things, what type of surface prep needs to be done to the steel before it can be coated with paint!
You know how some off the wall topics just never seem to end on forums? (I'm thinking Knives on my cat here)
That's pretty much how the discussion about blood/steel went. One guy doing a lot of answering questions obviously forgot more about it in the time it took for him to shave that morning, than the rest of us combined knew in our whole life.
Anyhow - the hamburger in the fridge is gone - so that idea is on hold for the moment...
 
Joined
Aug 28, 2016
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Get them and used them...carbon/stainless no much different in my normal use...just pick your best looking to u and u are done :cool:...btw ss mora also can rust...have fun
 
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Sep 3, 2012
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Some overly dramatic people would lead you believe that if you walk outside with a carbon steel knife within 10 seconds it'll have a uniform layer of red powder on it. I've been rough on a carbon steel Mora Companion here in the Ozarks for 9 years now, I don't really have a huge issue with rust in my environment. If you live in a coastal area or in a very humid place you may start to have some trouble. You will want to put a thin layer of oil on it and keep the plant gunk off of it, but I'd say a lot of us already do that with our stainless knives. Carbon takes such a razor edge on even a basic stone, it's a pleasure to use and sharpen.

I just recently picked up a Stainless and I haven't had the time to really put it through its paces, so I can't comment too much about their Sandvik, but if it's as refined as it usually is they are good to go.

When I tried to force a patina on my carbon Mora it turned into a blotchy ugly mess and I ended up sanding it off. Maybe there's an art to it, but I'll never force it again.
 

Velitrius

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Both are easy as hell to sharpen.

Functionally? I can't really tell the difference between the two.

I have no issue with the carbon version rusting on me.

They are inexpensive enough that both can be had for a song. And a dance maybe at some dealers.
 
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