Stainless Steel Recommendation

luciusx5

Well-Known Member
#1
Planning to make my daughter-in-law a set of steak knives and would like to use stainless steel. Since I don't have a heat treating oven I'll have to send them out for that. What steel would you recommend?
 

Motor City Mike

Well-Known Member
#2
I like S35vn but it's pricey

I've heard a lot of good things about aeb-l and it's quite a bit cheaper than S35vn. I have some but haven't tried it yet
 

Kev

Well-Known Member
#6
AEB-L for this guy too. I rough to shape, HT, and then grind in the bevels and details. Like mentioned above, I find it’s easier to reach my desired goal if I grind it hardened. Also I have been clamping the blade between 2 thick aluminum plates right out of the oven to help prevent warping.
 

KenH

Well-Known Member
#7
Yep, AEB-L is perhaps the best bang for the buck in SS around. Profile the blade, sent to HT, then grind post HT and you should have no problems with warping. Be sure to make 1 or 2 passes on one side, then switch to other side dipping in water every pass or so. Use fresh sharp belts to help keep heat down. You planning on something in the .060" range? While I use .040" for paring knives, it does seem like a steak knife works good in the .060" range. Using a full flat grind even a .098" thick will work just fine.
 

luciusx5

Well-Known Member
#8
Thanks for all the help guys! Looks like AEB-L it is. NJ Steel Baron has ABE-L in .070 so I'll get some on order. Thanks again!! You guys are great!!
 

John Wilson

Well-Known Member
#9
Thanks for all the help guys! Looks like AEB-L it is. NJ Steel Baron has ABE-L in .070 so I'll get some on order. Thanks again!! You guys are great!!
Good choice. I use the .070 for steak knives, parers, petties, and fillet knives.

.070 with a full flat grind will begin to get flexy at about 5 inch blade length. So if you’re doing a long slicer you may want to go thicker or leave a tad bit of flat along the spine to stiffen it up.

For chef knives I go to .110 with a distal taper.

I love the stuff.
 

luciusx5

Well-Known Member
#10
Thanks John! Most of the knives I’ve made have been hunters and skinners. Made a couple of kitchen utility knives but nothing special. Looking forward to doing these steak knives and maybe trying to do a chef’s knife. I’ll have to learn to do plungless grinds but that’s what I like about knife making. Always something new to learn.
 

John Wilson

Well-Known Member
#11
The fun thing about kitchen knives is that you get to actually use them every day and see people get enjoyment from having something you made. Your daughter in law will cherish them.
 

Nick Riggi

Well-Known Member
#12
I have exclusively been using AEB-L for a while now and love it.
It hardens to a high HRC with a Cryo treatment and and is reasonably-priced
Here is a paring knife I made. Started with .110 thick and ground down to a working thickness of .08. Blade is 3.5 inches with ioverall of 7.75 inch 2018-10-28 16.02.22.jpg
 
#14
This is what I do. This originated with Devin Thomas on another forum. Notes in parentheses are mine.

AEB-L Heat Treat

  • first ramp to 1725 (I put the blades in any time after the oven starts ramping up)
  • soak for 20 min at temp at 1725
  • plate quench. (only takes about 30 seconds to become cool enough to touch bare handed)
  • Ramp oven temp to 1950-1975, (I use 1975)
  • after temp is reached, place blade in furnace and hold for 8-10 min at temp, (again, I put the blades in any time after the oven starts ramping up)
  • plate quench.
  • Sub zero quench (I leave the blades in alcohol+dry ice for about an hour. Everything I read says there's no benefit to extended soak times, the steel just has to reach temp)
  • Temper

Hardness Temperature

Temper for 2 hours

62 HRC 175°C (345°F)
60 HRC 225°C (435°F)
58 HRC 350°C (660°F)
 
#16
This is what I do. This originated with Devin Thomas on another forum. Notes in parentheses are mine.

AEB-L Heat Treat

  • first ramp to 1725 (I put the blades in any time after the oven starts ramping up)
  • soak for 20 min at temp at 1725
  • plate quench. (only takes about 30 seconds to become cool enough to touch bare handed)
  • Ramp oven temp to 1950-1975, (I use 1975)
  • after temp is reached, place blade in furnace and hold for 8-10 min at temp, (again, I put the blades in any time after the oven starts ramping up)
  • plate quench.
  • Sub zero quench (I leave the blades in alcohol+dry ice for about an hour. Everything I read says there's no benefit to extended soak times, the steel just has to reach temp)
  • Temper

Hardness Temperature

Temper for 2 hours

62 HRC 175°C (345°F)
60 HRC 225°C (435°F)
58 HRC 350°C (660°F)
So to be clear your wrapping in foil, soaking at 1725 then quenching for stress relief? Do you change the foil for the next heat treat step of 1975?
 
#19
I've just started using AEB-L and heat treating it myself. I've been using the schedule John posted with great results. The first batch of 5 I used the alcohol and dry ice. The last 10 I used liquid nitrogen. I have been real surprised to have virtually no warping issues using .070" and .130" material.

I'm seriously considering switching to this steel for almost everything I make.
 
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