A11 is an amazing steel. It is tough and has excellent edge holding.
I don't understand why this steel is not more popular with knife collectors. It is tough to work because of its a wear resistance. I don't think any knifemaker will offer any finish except for a belt finish. It will also be hard to sharpen. But once it is sharp it will be sharp for a long long long time.
K390 is shown in the table above for comparison purposes.
A11 Data Sheets:
A11 Heat Treating Information:Preheat: 1500° - 1550°, equalize.
Austenitize: Heat rapidly from preheat. For optimum wear resistance, soak for 5 to 15 minutes 2150°. For balance of wear resistance and toughness, soak for 15 to 30 minute 2050°. For maximum toughness and minimum distortion in cooling, soak for 30 to 60 minutes 1975°. Quench in pressurized gas, or warm oil then cool in still air to 150-125°.
Temper: Temper immediately after quenching. Typical temperature range is 1000 - 1100°. Do not temper below 1000°. Hold at temperature for two hours then air cool to ambient temperature. Double tempering is required. Triple tempering is required when austenitized at 2100°F or higher.
Heat Treating Services:
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