ApexUltra - exceptional knife steel
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ApexUltra - now in Australia!
This is truly an exceptional steel - made in Austria and invented by Dr Larrin Thomas (the man behind Knifesteelnerds.com), Tobias Hangler (Austrian metallurgist and knife maker) and Marco Guldimann (knife maker from Switzerland).
What is unique is the high hardness AND high toughness, bridging the "impossible" gap where normal steels are forced to compromise for either toughness or high hardness.
Result = high hardness (66 - 69 HRC) in a thin, flexible blade for a truly exceptional result.
Very high carbon at 1.25%, very high purity from double processing, high vanadium at 2.6% this truly is an incredible steel.
ApexUltra has much higher edge retention than both 52100 and Blue Super, steels it shares history with but surpasses by a long shot (Graph below).
ApexUltra can be forge welded, usually in a san mai configuration, can be forged to shape as monosteel blades, and is relatively easy to shape and sharpen due to very fine carbide sizes.
Due to small batch size, additional processing and import costs this is an expensive carbon steel - but the results speaks for themselves.
How to heat treat ApexUltra:
- Hold at 830 C / 1525 F for 10 mins
- Quench in fast or medium speed oil
- Fast oil not required but gives higher final hardness
This is a specialty steel - there is much more to the discussion on heat treatment - see this link for more details: LINK
From the designers at https://www.apexultrasteel.com/:
"A new steel developed specifically for handmade knives.
ApexUltra is a steel truly worth of handcrafted knives.
It is a low alloy design that is forgeable, forge-weldable, and its fine carbides make the steel relatively easy to finish and sharpen.
With its high purity and well-balanced alloy composition it has the highest toughness of all knife steels tested so far in the 66+ HRC range along with excellent edge retention."