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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

VG-10 stainless steel used in knife blade.

Knife blades made of VG-10 stainless steel, means very little to many of us and the very mention of VG-10 or any other type of stainless steel type to the average consumer can cause confusion and misunderstanding, essentially you might as well be speaking a foreign language all together.   Compare it to talking car engines with someone who just wants he car to get them to point A to point B safely and reliably.  They don't want to know about the engine, or they will pretend to understand but in reality have no clue what you just said or what it meant.  Same goes for types of steel, except that there are even fewer people that understand, even the basics, of the different types of steels used in knife manufacturing. 

VG-10 stainless steel is produced by Japanese steelmaker Takefu Special Steel CO., LTD and is considered a high carbon stainless steel.  VG-10 contains 1.0% carbon, which according to the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) qualifies it as a high carbon steel and it contains 15% Chromium meeting the minimum AISI standards of 10% to qualify VG-10 as a stainless steel. 

VG-10 is often clad with 400 series stainless steel in such a way as to produce a Damascus appearance on knives as seen on the Mcusta folding knife, model 13D as seen below.
Not only is VG-10 common in folding cutlery, many people have had experience with it in the kitchen, with the introduction of the Al Mar Ultra Chef line and Kai's Shun line.

VG-10 is best known for it's edge retention, being a harder steel often HRc of >60, it will retain a sharper edge for a longer period of time than a softer steel.  VG-10 not only stays sharper longer, when sharpened it can be honed to an incredibly sharp edge.  It also offers great corrosion resistance and is a relatively tough steel being a more resistant to tip breakage and edge chipping which can and does occur with harder steels.

The next time you purchase a knife, consider a knife blade made of VG-10 stainless steel.  A great introduction to higher end knife steels and a world away from to dime store folders and gas station specials. 

Take a look at the Spyderco Centofante III, sweet knife for only $53.99 + shipping.

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