Industrial Knife Materials: Solutions Built for You

Industrial knives are essential to numerous manufacturing industries and companies. Replacing a knife or blade involves research to find the right blade for your application.

The knife’s material is a critical aspect to research before you buy a new blade. The material can impact the knife’s function and impact the price. Check out this guide to see what materials industrial knives can be made of and the benefits they can provide for your company or project.

What Materials Can My Industrial Knives Be Made Of?

Quality knife materials can help keep knives in working condition longer by preventing edge dulling or usage failure. Using a knife made from the right material will help you complete your project efficiently and save you money in the long term.

You’ll encounter a wide selection of knife materials as you complete your pre-purchase research. Each material has its own characteristics that make it perfect for some applications but not as ideal for others.

A blade made with high-quality materials can be one of the best tools you have. Whether you’re cutting food products, cutting through lumber or slicing through packaging, the knife’s material can make all the difference in your work productivity.

Knowing how steel knife properties can impact your cutting application will help in the knife purchasing process. Custom blade materials for industrial applications can include:

  • High carbon steel: High carbon steel describes steel with a carbon content of 0.55% or above.
  • 1075 and 1095 spring steel: Tempered spring steel 1075 and 1095 are both closely related materials that contain carbon.
  • Stainless steel: Stainless steel contains carbon, iron and chromium.
  • Ceramic: Ceramic is primarily composed of zirconia ceramic.
  • Solid carbide: Solid carbide is strong because it contains tungsten carbide.
  • 52100: 52100 steel contains high levels of carbon.
  • M-2 high-speed steel (HSS): M-2 steel is a high-speed steel that contains tungsten-molybdenum.
  • D-2 tool steel: D-2 steel contains a high amount of chromium and carbon.
  • CPM 10V: CPM 10V is another high-speed steel containing vanadium carbides.
  • 8670 carbon alloy: 8670 carbon alloy steel includes carbon, nickel, chromium and magnesium.

Any of these metals can create a useful and efficient industrial knife. Since knives can be a vital aspect of a project, assembly line or industry, it’s essential that your blade is reliable and durable. Each of these materials has its own benefits and characteristics that make it beneficial for certain cutting jobs.

Benefits of the Different Materials

Industrial knife materials contain distinctive elements that contribute to their unique job performance. A good knife will simply cut the materials you have, but a great knife with the right materials will make your job easier and much more efficient. A well-made knife blade will stand up to your job tasks and last longer while also withstanding repeated sharpening and maintenance.

Learn about the benefits of the various industrial knife materials to see which option is the best for your cutting application.

High Carbon Steel

The mixture of carbon and steel makes this alloy material a top contender for popular industrial knives. Check out all of the benefits of using a carbon steel knife for cutting:

  • Strength: Carbon steel is harder and lasts longer than traditional stainless steel knives. Steel is an alloy that contains numerous metals, and carbon increases the hardness of the material. Still, be sure to use caution when handling these blades, as a drop can potentially chip the material.
  • Ductility: A carbon steel knife can be frequently sharpened without breaking or losing its integrity. Once sharpened, it can also hold its edge well, even after multiple uses. This feature makes high carbon one of the best steel industrial knife options, especially in demanding applications.
  • Eco-friendliness: If your industry is concerned with green operations, you’ll appreciate the fact that carbon steel is easy to recycle. While your blade will have a long life span, you can recycle it once it’s time to upgrade to a new one.

1075 and 1095 Spring Steel

The two types of spring steel, 1075 and 1095, are both similar materials that manufacturers use to make knives. Learn about the various benefits of using a spring steel 1075 or 1095 knife:

  • Durability: Both spring steel 1075 and spring steel 1095 contain carbon, which makes the material hard and durable. 1095 steel, in particular, is a hard material that can hold its edge well once sharpened.
  • Disposable blade varieties: If your application requires disposable blades, you might consider 1075 or 1095 steel.
  • Availability in thin gauges: Both 1075 and 1095 steel are suitable to create thin blades, which you may need for precise applications.
  • Affordability: As a thinner material, 1075 and 1095 steel blades are affordable and suitable for various applications.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel knives are a fairly popular option for their benefits. Check out the advantages of stainless steel knives and how they can possibly work for your projects:

  • Rust and stain resistance: Stainless steel contains the element chromium, which helps protect the material from moisture or water damage. This quality is helpful for knives or blades that are constantly exposed to moisture or outdoor elements.
  • Strength: This material is strong and durable against falls and rough handling. Since stainless steel is not fragile, it can handle excessive use. Just note that a lower ductility may mean steel blades require extra care when sharpening.
  • Availability: Stainless steel is a widely available material because of its popularity.
  • Cost-effectiveness: Stainless steel has a higher strength-to-weight advantage over other materials. That advantage means blade manufacturers can use less material in a knife, which can potentially lower costs.


Ceramic knives can still deliver practical benefits even though they are not steel. You might find ceramic blades used in various applications from medical to electronic or film and foil industries. Check out the different benefits a ceramic blade can provide to your job:

  • Hardness: Ceramic blades are an extremely hard material. This material is harder than both high carbon steel and stainless steel. Just be sure to protect it from drops to prevent chips.
  • Corrosion resistance: Ceramic blade materials are one of the best for preventing corrosion on your knife or saw blades. If you’re looking for an industrial knife that will last long, ceramic is a suitable option.
  • Strength: Ceramic material can last a long time without you having to sharpen the blade.
  • Precision: Many choose ceramic blades for use in precise applications. Ceramic knives are known to cut materials thinner in certain uses.

Solid Carbide

Solid carbide industrial knives are perfect for precise cuts. You can also experience these benefits of using a solid carbide knife:

  • Hard structure: The hardness of carbide knives allows for frequent sharpening and will result in excellent sharp edges. Carbide can retain its sharp edge for a long time, even with multiple uses.
  • Variety of uses: A carbide knife is best for most industrial uses because of its strength and ability to cut through numerous materials. Carbide is a useful material for carving, engraving, cutting and milling.
  • Minimal binding: Carbide blades tend to cut quickly without binding on materials. That functionality improves your efficiency while reducing the stress on your machinery.

52100 Steel

52100 steel knives are commonly used in multiple industrial workplaces, though they may be best in applications exposed to minimal moisture. Check out the benefits of using a 52100 steel blade on your next project:

  • Wear resistance: The high amount of carbon in a 52100 steel knife provides the ideal level of resistance to wear and corrosion.
  • Toughness: 52100 steel offers a significant amount of toughness and hardness for a long-lasting knife, again thanks to its carbon composition.
  • Edge retention: Harder steel blades retain their edges after sharpening, and 52100 is no exception. Edge retention helps keep your blades sharp for longer, even with repeated use, which is ideal for industrial applications.

M-2 High-Speed Steel

M-2 HSS contains tungsten and vanadium to provide quality industrial cutting abilities. Check out the benefits of purchasing a new M-2 high-speed steel blade:

  • High abrasion resistance: The M-2 material has a high hardness, which makes a blade resistant to wear and great for numerous cutting applications.
  • High heat resistance: M-2 high-speed steel can withstand high temperatures without losing its toughness or hardness. Whether your blade applications experience high heat or your frequent use of a blade creates heat from friction, M-2 HSS can handle it.
  • Variety of uses: This material is commonly used in cutting tools, like milling cutters, knives, saws and twist drills.

D-2 Tool Steel

D-2 tool steel is a high carbon material that is popular for industrial knives. Check out the different benefits that this material has to offer:

  • High heat resistance: Like M-2 HSS, D-2 steel can retain its hardness in high temperatures, making it suitable for various industries.
  • Corrosion resistance: The hardness of the D-2 tool steel makes it more corrosion resistant and stronger for multiple cutting applications.
  • High wear resistance: D-2 contains chromium, which allows the material to have high wear resistance against rust and moisture.
  • Durability: D-2 tool steel is another material that creates a strong blade able to hold a sharp edge.


CPM 10V steel is a high-speed steel that can provide many years of use as an industrial tool. Learn about the other benefits of CPM 10 V steel:

  • Wear resistance: When you compare this material to other industrial materials, it ranks high for wear resistance, which can present cost savings for your operations.
  • Toughness: The vanadium and other elements in this material allow it to last long with multiple high-impact uses.
  • Versatility: This material is versatile and has a variety of treatment options that allow manufacturers to make many tools from the material, including durable industrial blades.

8670 Carbon Alloy

8670 carbon alloy is a high carbon steel that makes a great industrial knife or saw. Check out the various benefits of 8670 carbon steel:

  • Hardness: The elements in 8670 carbon alloy steel, like carbon, chromium, nickel and manganese, help make the material strong and tough.
  • Various uses and high availability: This material is highly available because of its common usage in industrial blades and circular knives.
  • Wear resistance: The amount of carbon in 8670 carbon steel allows the material to have a high wear and tear resistance.
  • Availability in thick gauges: If materials like 1075 or 1095 spring steel won’t suit your applications because you need thicker blades, consider 8670 carbon alloy knives.

Other Industrial Knife Buying Tips

Choosing a blade material for your industrial knife is important, but there are other aspects you should consider before purchasing a new industrial knife. Look into the knife manufacturer and insights into your industry before purchasing a knife.


If you’re still unsure which blade material will work for you, your industry can be a determining factor. Consider whether your applications experience high heat or moisture, for instance, to narrow down your options. You’ll also notice numerous styles of blades that are industry-specific. You may even consider looking into custom blade construction for unique applications.


You’ll find many industrial knife manufacturers as you search for a new blade. Manufacturers can vary on quality, design and user-friendliness of industrial knives. It’s helpful to do research on different manufacturers to learn about other users’ thoughts and opinions on their products. This step will help you narrow down your search and ensure you’re buying from an experienced knife manufacturer.

Blade Configuration

The material your blade is made from is an essential factor in its long-term use and longevity. Still, the blade configuration will impact the tool’s efficiency and productivity on your project. The manufacturer can create your blade to have one of various tooth profiles to help with your cutting application:

  • Standard V
  • Scalloped
  • High-low V
  • Vari-depth V
  • Slant tooth
  • L-style

Browse Industrial Knives From York Saw & Knife

Looking through different industrial knife materials is an essential part of the buying process, but it’s OK if you’re still unsure of what material will be best for your industry. If you still need expert advice on the type of material you’ll need, contact York Saw & Knife for additional information on industrial knife materials.

York Saw & Knife is one of the oldest industrial blade manufacturers in the United States. We pride ourselves on providing reliable and quality saw blades and knives to our customers. Contact us today or call 1-800-233-1969 for more information on our blade materials and other products.