s.s. kitchenware as craft stock

Does anyone know what type of stainless steel is generally used for common butterknives? They seem to have the same temper as carbon spring steel, as
I can't bend them. Looking for guidelines on heat treating, as I want to ho t-forge the handles to make jaw harps, and might have to restore the blade' s temper for springiness of the tongue.
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On Sunday, July 15, 2018 at 1:57:55 PM UTC-4, Ken Grunke wrote:

TryThey seem to have the same temper as carbon spring steel, as I can't bend them. Looking for guidelines on heat treating, as I want to hot-forge the handles to make jaw harps, and might have to restore the blade's temper for springiness of the tongue.
See if the butter knives are magnetic.
Dan
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Does anyone know what type of stainless steel is generally used for common butterknives? They seem to have the same temper as carbon spring steel, as I can't bend them. Looking for guidelines on heat treating, as I want to hot-forge the handles to make jaw harps, and might have to restore the blade's temper for springiness of the tongue.
===========================http://www.mastainless.com/faqs "The 300 series stainless steel can be hardened but only by work hardening." which means deformation, such as pressing the blank into the knife mold.
Hardness doesn't affect "springiness", the distance a force stretches the metal. Harder steel can merely be stretched further without taking a permanent set.
You can prove this to yourself by clamping the tips of two long bugle head screws in a vise and heating the shank of one red hot with a torch. They will still vibrate at the same tone and be equally difficult to bend a short distance, but the annealed one will yield if pushed further.
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On 15/07/18 18:57, Ken Grunke wrote:

Stainless cutlery is generally 18 -8, 18% Cr, 8% Nickel so 304. It can't be heat treated to harden it only by mechanical working.
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Check them with a magnet, as most cutlery knives, in my experience, were 400 series stainless and magnetic as iron.
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On Monday, July 16, 2018 at 8:43:05 AM UTC-4, Ignoramus22929 wrote:

ommon butterknives? They seem to have the same temper as carbon spring stee l, as I can't bend them. Looking for guidelines on heat treating, as I want to hot-forge the handles to make jaw harps, and might have to restore the blade's temper for springiness of the tongue.

t

400 series

That won't tell you what you think it does. This simple question actually i s, unfortunately, pretty complicated to answer.
Once 300-series stainless has been heavily cold-worked, as in forging or co ining, it's very magnetic. All of my flatware is highly magnetic and it's a ll 300-series steel.
400 series is used mostly for cutlery that needs to take and hold an edge, not for table flatware.It's less rust-resistant. Leave a 400-series knife i n lemon juice or vinegar for a day or two, and you'll probably see what I m ean.
Kitchenware manufacturers often use old steel designations, which complicat ed the issue. However, for out purposes, their 18-8 and 18-10 designations are equivalent to 300-series austenitic stainless. Almost all of your flatw are is made of these grades. But put a magnet on them -- most of them are m agnetic from the cold working. (Technically, they are "paramagnetic." They' re attracted to a magnet, but they can't be magnetized themselves to any su bstantial degree.)
The only piece of 300-series stainless in my kitchen drawer that is NOT mag netic is an ice cream scoop. My guess is that it was annealed somehow, beca use the scoop has a pretty deep draw in it and thus is quite heavily cold-w orked.
While we're at it, cutlery manufacturers sometimes use the designation 18-0 . That's 400-series stainless, which is quite magnetic. But they don't use it for flatware.
Ken may have drawn some incorrect conclusions from what we've said. For exa mple, making a simple bend isn't going to contribute much to work-hardening his stainless. Also, heating to 400 deg F won't "anneal" his steel. If you soak it at the temperature for an hour or so, you probably will get some s tress relief. But it takes a temperature over 1000 deg. F (aroun 1400, I th ink) to anneal 300-series stainless.
--
Ed Huntress


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I do not know what is more or less prevalent. Most spoons, forks and knives that I saw were made of 400 series stainless. The reason for it is that 400 series stainless is cheaper. But I am sure that I mostly see cheap stuff.

I just chedked the spoons that I have here at my work, they all jump on magnets like iron would. I am a scrapper and I can tell.

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On Monday, July 16, 2018 at 9:44:48 AM UTC-4, Ignoramus22929 wrote:

m>

r common butterknives? They seem to have the same temper as carbon spring s teel, as I can't bend them. Looking for guidelines on heat treating, as I w ant to hot-forge the handles to make jaw harps, and might have to restore t he blade's temper for springiness of the tongue.

an't

re 400 series

ly is, unfortunately, pretty complicated to answer.

r coining, it's very magnetic. All of my flatware is highly magnetic and it 's all 300-series steel.

Let's let Oneida gum up the issue further for us. Get a load of this quote from their Amazon page:
"Constructed with 18/0 stainless steel, our housewares flatware is durable and stylish?and built to last for generations. In quality gauge and finish, Oneida housewares flatware represents the best of the category. Fi ne flatware is no longer only a special occasion item in the home?y ou will see it grace the dining table for everyday use in many homes across the country. Styles range from formal to casual, but all offer the highest level of craftsmanship. All Oneida fine flatware is 18/10 or 18/8."
...Tilt.... d8-)
Checking a manufacturer of restaurant-grade flatware did NOT clarify anythi ng.
I'd love to track this down, but nobody pays me to do that anymore. Meantim e, the old metallurgy books from which I got more of my information say tha t flatware is made of 18-8. Now I'm finding sources that say 18-0 (AISI 420 ). There even is some 13-0 (AISI 410).
I quit. I can't allow this much distraction from serious...um...fishing. d8 -)
--
Ed Huntress

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haha

Take a magnet to Walmart or bed Bath or whatever.
There is nothing really wrong with 400 stainless flatware, it cleans well and you can eat soup with it just fine. But the look is not as nice as 300 series.
i
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On Jul 16, 2018, Ignoramus22929 wrote

I suspect that this clears up a mystery for me: I noticed that some spoons imparted a metallic test while eating soup or chili, a taste like that of carbon steel.
I bet I can taste the 400-series steels, but not the 300-series steels.
Joe Gwinn
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On Monday, July 16, 2018 at 10:49:33 AM UTC-4, Joseph Gwinn wrote:

Get a patent on the Joe Gwinn Lick Test. You could set yourself up as a metallurgy lab and have people send you samples for testing -- $20 a lick. d8-)
--
Ed Huntress

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Just be careful to keep the magnet away from your credit cards.
You could clamp two butter knives upright by the tips in a vise and see if heating one makes it bend more easily after cooling, and the effect of quenching it from however hot you can heat it.
Welding stores sell stainless steel wire that is stiff yet bendable enough to wind into rustproof coil springs. https://www.arc-zone.com/stainless-steel-tig-rod-er-308l
-jsw
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On Sunday, July 15, 2018 at 1:57:55 PM UTC-4, Ken Grunke wrote:

n butterknives? They seem to have the same temper as carbon spring steel, a s I can't bend them. Looking for guidelines on heat treating, as I want to hot-forge the handles to make jaw harps, and might have to restore the blad e's temper for springiness of the tongue.
It's 18-8 austenitic stainless steel -- the cheap generic, uncertified vers ion of 304 stainless.
It cannot be hardened except by cold-working. Kitchen flatware (table knive s, forks, etc.) are cold-forged, stamped, or coined, depending on their qua lity. Those are all cold-working processes that work-harden the hell out of 304 stainless.
As soon as you heat them to around 400 deg. F, they start to lose their str ength and hardness. At 900 deg. F, they become quite soft. They can't be re -hardened except by cold-working them again.
As Jim says, "springiness" has nothing to do with hardness. It's the same w hether the stainless (or any steel) is dead soft or fully hardened.
It's not quite that simple, though, as hardness DOES determine how far you can bend them before they're bent permanently. Their stiffness, or springin ess, doesn't change, but how much you can "spring" them does vary with thei r hardness.
--
Ed Huntress

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This is all good news, the fact that I can cold bend the handle until it wo rk-hardens, then anneal at a temperature low enough so as not to (hopefully ) affect the butterknife's hardness.
I'm sawing the handle down the middle for most of it's length, then bending the two halves symetrically apart, looping them back around close to the b lade. The blade will be cut narrow, tapering from about 1/4" to 1/8" at the tip. Y'all know what a jaw harp, AKA jew's harp looks like, I assume.
Thanks guys. Will post a pic or two when I get something accomplished.
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