Carpenter Maxamet Knife Steel
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Maxamet(Carpenter) - Carpenter high speed tool steel. Uses their trademark Micro-Melt® technology. Early on, circa 2014, from production knives manufacturers, only Kershaw did try to make a folder out of it, ZT888 with target hardness being 67-69HRC. However, it proved too difficult to grind the steel at 60+ HRC, and the blades had warping issues if/when heat treated after grinding. As I was informed later by one of the readers, Spyderco did produce several folders using Maxamet. The list includes Manix 2, Paramilitary 2 and 3, Mule, possibly more. As earlier forum posts indicate, Spyderco also has encountered some issues when producing the knives out of Maxamet, however as the results show, they were quite successful in resolving those issues. The number of the different models and the volume is much higher than the limited run of ZT folders using the same alloy. Overall, Maxamet is a very high performance alloy, for what it was designed for, high speed industrial cutters, however, like many similar alloy, it performs exceptionally well in the high performance knives as well.
Maxamet is a high carbide volume steel, ~22%. However, that's still lower than Crucible CPM REX 121 steel and many other alloys with comparable performance. Alloy is high on Cobalt and Vanadium. While 10% Tungsten(W) may seem a lot, but in reality it isn't, because Tungsten atoms are so heavy, in other words, very heavy elements like Tungsten, produce fewer atoms to form carbides. Maxamet has very high wear resistance, high working hardness and lots of carbides. As such, Maxamet will perform better with coarse edge, and isn't in the "easy to sharpen category", but from what I have seen, even silicon sharpening stones can cope with sharpening work just fine, let alone ceramics and diamonds.
According to various sources I've seen, Maxamet performance is similar to Crucible CPM S110V steel, which is one of the best performers in its own right. Although Maxamet isn't stainless, but at the same time Maxamet is tougher compared to Crucible CPM S110V steel, which can result in better edge holding ability, and cutting performance with the right geometry and heat treatment.
I'm still curious to see a custom knife made out of Maxamet though.

Manufacturing Technology - MM

Country - United States(US)

Known Aliases:
Carpenter - Micro-Melt Maxamet

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