Ranking of Steels in Categories based on Edge Retention cutting 5/8" rope

Joined
Apr 22, 2010
Messages
49
Great testing Jim. Your perserverance is most impressive and your neurotic consistency is greatly appreciated. Thank you.
 
Joined
Jan 16, 2006
Messages
386
I just wanted to comment on Jim’s work. The amount of cutting he did to glean this information is substantial. We have been comparing notes back and forth and even though I cut ¾ inch rope and he cuts 5/8 we are comparing very closely on the two knives of mine he tested. ¾ rope dulls a blade faster of course but we are seeing the same percentage difference on the comparisons. His experiments on sharpening were enlightening for me. I don’t have the equipment to do polished edges; my sharpening is with silicon carbide and diamond stones by hand. The edge off a green DMT for example is very aggressive. We both cut with the polished and with the diamond edge on my knives that he tested. I could see a very different feel between the two. The polished edge seems to slide while the diamond finish bites. Even though the polished edge is less aggressive it still cuts with about the same down force. I did see the same trend for the polished edge to start out with less force and cut longer. I don’t think I am converted yet; I still like my edge for field work, hunting and fishing but do have to say I was impressed on how sharp his edges are.
On the other knives Jim tested I like the ranking idea. it is a much better way to compare rather than to list the finite number of cuts. I think the ranking represents the potential for the different steels to perform. Things can move around based on heat treating and each different knife geometry, but I think this is a very good picture of how the blades can work compared to each other. It is an exact comparison of how the specific knives he tested work. Thanks Jim for the exceptional effort. Phil
 
Joined
Jun 24, 2009
Messages
5,040
will have to agree with phil on a toothy edge when it comes to fish. the small sharks we catch in the gulf need a real saw edge to cut that skin.
dennis
 

Ankerson

Knife and Computer Geek
Gold Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2002
Messages
21,096
I just wanted to comment on Jim’s work. The amount of cutting he did to glean this information is substantial. We have been comparing notes back and forth and even though I cut ¾ inch rope and he cuts 5/8 we are comparing very closely on the two knives of mine he tested. ¾ rope dulls a blade faster of course but we are seeing the same percentage difference on the comparisons. His experiments on sharpening were enlightening for me. I don’t have the equipment to do polished edges; my sharpening is with silicon carbide and diamond stones by hand. The edge off a green DMT for example is very aggressive. We both cut with the polished and with the diamond edge on my knives that he tested. I could see a very different feel between the two. The polished edge seems to slide while the diamond finish bites. Even though the polished edge is less aggressive it still cuts with about the same down force. I did see the same trend for the polished edge to start out with less force and cut longer. I don’t think I am converted yet; I still like my edge for field work, hunting and fishing but do have to say I was impressed on how sharp his edges are.
On the other knives Jim tested I like the ranking idea. it is a much better way to compare rather than to list the finite number of cuts. I think the ranking represents the potential for the different steels to perform. Things can move around based on heat treating and each different knife geometry, but I think this is a very good picture of how the blades can work compared to each other. It is an exact comparison of how the specific knives he tested work. Thanks Jim for the exceptional effort. Phil



Thanks Phil for ringing in. :)

I think we are really getting a lot of great information out of this and confirming each others findings, that is important also, the more information the better.

You have been doing as much or more cutting than I have so I think we need a vacation. :eek:
 

black mamba

Gold Member
Joined
Oct 21, 2009
Messages
17,650
Jim, I just found this thread and have to say thank you for the extensive and well thought out testing.
This is a thread for the ages, with many experienced and highly informative contributers. Thanks to all for their input.
 
Joined
Oct 2, 2009
Messages
727
And in the end... your average Joe will see no difference between steels of Buck's 420HC and M390 because they will be hitting bone, dinging it against other things, cutting stuff that has silicone particles in it.. lol..

Thanks for the tests, I am sure it took a lot of time. I do a simple test. I take 2 knives and cut the hell out of some hickory and then cut a lot of cardboard. In the end, in real world usage, most metals lose their extremely keen edge (mirror polished tree topping sharpness) at the same rate, from what I have experienced so far. I try not to be technical and just want to see what real world usage wear does to each steel.
 
Joined
Aug 16, 2008
Messages
5,911
Looking forward to the S90V results from Spyderco. Good work and thanks, Jim.
 
Joined
Aug 12, 2010
Messages
622
I have had good results with AUS 8 from Cold Steel, seems they have the heat treat down pretty good.

Jim, was the blade you used in AUS 8 by Cold Steel per chance?
 

Ankerson

Knife and Computer Geek
Gold Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2002
Messages
21,096
I have had good results with AUS 8 from Cold Steel, seems they have the heat treat down pretty good.

Jim, was the blade you used in AUS 8 by Cold Steel per chance?

Yes, it was a 2010 Recon 1, I used that because it's was AUS-8A and they really know how to HT it.
 
Joined
Aug 12, 2010
Messages
622
Another thing that is revealed here is that all the knives tested were able to be sharpened to a high degree. A lot of people believe that certain steels just wont get sharp.
 
Joined
Dec 9, 2005
Messages
2,341
I see that S90V has shown up in category 1, which means you work fast! From my own experience that is where I expected S90V to be, but I still like CPM M4 better from it's ease of getting extremely sharp quicker. It will be interesting to see what production blades would be able to unseat S90V, M4, and M390, as I know that CPM M4 and S90V (I haven't tried M390 yet) stay sharp for quite a while in EDC use. Both also break down cardboard until you get tired with a still useable edge.

Mike
 

Ankerson

Knife and Computer Geek
Gold Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2002
Messages
21,096
I see that S90V has shown up in category 1, which means you work fast! From my own experience that is where I expected S90V to be, but I still like CPM M4 better from it's ease of getting extremely sharp quicker. It will be interesting to see what production blades would be able to unseat S90V, M4, and M390, as I know that CPM M4 and S90V (I haven't tried M390 yet) stay sharp for quite a while in EDC use. Both also break down cardboard until you get tired with a still useable edge.

Mike

Yes that's were I expected it to be also for production knives, so far it's been predictable to me where the steels end up.
 
Top