Nitro-V Stainless Steel
We have chosen this type of steel for all our stainless knives and tools, primarily due to its boosted strength and toughness with alloying elements such as Nitrogen and Vanadium, but also due to its very high Chromium content which makes it one of the most corrosion resistant steels available. We purchase our Nitro-V stainless steel from Canadian Knifemaker Supply in Sundre, AB and it is acquired from New Jersey Steel Baron in the US. Below is a description of the steel followed by a chemistry analysis:
“The Baron’s Nitro-V is NJSB’s latest effort to provide premium cutlery grade steels and materials in an ever expanding, evolving craft that is custom tailored to our customers’ wants and needs. As a martensitic stainless steel with a chromium based chemistry, we have optimized the best qualities of AEB-L by enriching the formula using Nitrogen and Vanadium to create a new ferroalloy that provides exceptional edge performance, high hardness and extreme corrosion resistance especially in marine and wet environments. As leaders in the knife steel supply world, we recognize the ever-present demand not only for steel specifically formulated to suit the cutlery industry, but our customers’ desires to stay on the cutting edge of steel that is tough and versatile enough for pocket, kitchen, hunting, fishing; and tactical knives. We also understand that, with the wide range of boutique “super steels” already available, that the utmost concern of the hard working people we supply is to have a reasonably priced, high performance option that can match their needs, regardless their styles, niches, and patrons. This is just one small step in The Baron’s ever growing efforts as a part of this industry and its community–with Nitro-V, you can be assured that it is every bit the poster child for NJSB’s commitment to quality, integrity, and ingenuity. Welcome to the next level.”
O-1 Tool Steel
We have chosen to use the full flat grind in conjunction with 3/16” thick stock as it pertains to our camp/ bushcraft specific tools such as the Orion MK2 & the Arcadian primarily because, O-1 tool steel is not particularly prone to chipping such as D2 tool steel is for example. This allows for a finer edge that (when properly heat treated) will hold up to heavy work such as batoning through wood, making feather sticks for kindling, field dressing game, etc. and still retain an edge that is sharp enough for finer precision work such as food preparation and cutting paracord for camp and shelter preparation. Below is a description of the steel followed by a chemistry analysis:
“The chemical composition of all Precision Marshall ground flat stock falls within ranges that are rigidly controlled and, in many cases, much tighter than those widely accepted under industry specifications. This ensures maximum predictability and consistency in service. All Precision Marshall Ground Flat Stock is 100% free of decarburization. Thickness and width are horizontally ground to a maximum finish of 40 Ra. All tool steel and stainless analyses (O-1, A-2, D-2, S-7 and H13) are supplied in the annealed condition. Close control assures complete spheroidization throughout. The low-carbon analysis (C-1018) is supplied with pearlitic microstructure. All Precision Marshall Ground Flat Stock is produced from cross-rolled sheet or plate, insuring a more homogeneous structure and finer grain size than other types. Furthermore, the cross-rolling process significantly enhances toughness of the product and increases tensile strength in the transverse direction. All ends of Precision Marshall Ground Flat Stock are precisely cut and deburred to insure excellent yields and handling safety. Thicknesses 3/16” and up are cold-sawn, while lighter sections are sheared. Ground Flat Stock is mechanically straightened with a flatness aim of approximately .005” per foot.”
Phosphorous: 0.020 (max)
Sulphur: 0.020 (max)
Full Flat Grind
We have chosen to use the full flat grind in conjunction with 3/16” thick stock as it pertains to our camp/ bushcraft specific tools such as the Orion MK2 & the Arcadian primarily because, O-1 tool steel is not particularly prone to chipping such as D2 tool steel is for example. This allows for a finer edge that (when properly heat treated) will hold up to heavy work such as batoning through wood, making feather sticks for kindling, field dressing game, etc. and still retain an edge that is sharp enough for finer precision work such as food preparation and cutting paracord for camp and shelter preparation.
Forging vs. Stock Removal Process
We make our knives and tools primarily using the stock removal process. This means that we use files, belt grinders, and many other means to shape the bevels on our blades, plunge lines, thumb jimping etc rather than hammer and forge methods. The ‘Forged in Fire’ television show is a fantastic thing for our industry and has brought a lot of exposure to knifemakers and bladesmiths, but it has an unfortunate side effect in that it leads a lot of people to believe that forging is a superior process, which is entirely false. Forging and Stock Removal are simply two different ways of moving and shaping steel, and it is a simple fact that anyone who is forging a blade will inevitably carry out at least some (if not a lot of) stock removal before completing their work, and at the end of the day- the heat treatment process (when speaking of same steel to same steel) is the same, and it has to be. Making a knife with the quality and fit / finish level appropriate for selling the product to a customer is simply not possible to do in under 3 hours. Most of our knives spend between 8-12 hours in the maker’s hands and every detail is closely overseen throughout the entire process.