View Full Version : 01 steel question

gull wing
10-01-2011, 02:20 PM
I have some 3/32" thick 01 steel on the way, for folder knives.
Should I wrap them in the foil, considering I'm going to oil quinch?
I know there is no way I can unwrap before quinching.

Grinding before HT? Yes? NO?

Doug Lester
10-01-2011, 05:53 PM
Actually, this is not a yes or no as to whether ot not you grind before or after heat treating. Each has it's advantages. If you heat treat before grinding the grinding will go faster and you won't have to worry about overtempering the steel. If you heat treat before they the belts will cut more slowly and you will have to cool the blades more often, slowing things more, but you will not have to worry as much about warping.

I don't use foil for heat treatment, I prefer anti-scale compound, but you can unwrap before quenching. You would have to do it very quickly with something like pickup tongs while still in the heat treating forge or oven and then move quickly to the quenchant.


10-01-2011, 09:15 PM
Doug said it well about grind / no grind. I'd be tempted to lean toward no grind for thin blades - but dip often when grinding and do it barehand so you know before it gets too hot.

I wouldn't recommend using foil - for exactly the reason you suggest - takes too long to get into quench. A customer had me experiment on some O1 round knives. I did one in Turco, one in ATP641 and one unprotected. (I'm not a fan of the PBC powders). All came out at the same rockwell, and the customer didn't like cleaning up the Turco blade. He couldn't find any difference between the ATP641 blade and the unprotected blade, so he has me do all his round knives uncoated now. Keep in mind that these are precise kilns - and a forge heat treat may turn out entirely different. If there is any decarb, it doesn't show in Rockwell tests. We soak O1 for 15 minutes at temperature.

One of the nice things about doing your own HT is the ability to try things for yourself and develop what works for you.


gull wing
10-03-2011, 02:32 PM
Thanks! No foil then!
Of course i'm going to "test run" a couple of 01 pieces.
I would like to see a piece done unprotected before I do a real blade.