Is N690Co steel good knife steel? Details N690Co steel review

What is N690Co steel?

Bohler, an Austrian company that produces N690Co steel, is high-end stainless steel. This steel is high in carbon and has Cobalt for structural stability. This steel is an incarnation of Bohler steel.

Knifemakers love N690Co stainless steel for its affordability and ease of use. This means that they can make affordable knives and other products. It is used for making sharp knives and surgical instruments.

BohlerN690Co steel is used by the knife industry to make tactical knives, bushcraft knives, and camping knives, just to name a few. Because it has high levels of Carbon and Cobalt, it is ideal for outdoor knives.

Bohler N690Co-Steel Chemical Composition

  • Carbon 1.07%: Enhances edge retention, hardness, and tensile strengths. It increases steel resistance to wear, corrosion, and abrasion.
  • Chromium Cro 17.30%: Chromium carbide is formed. This increases the hardness, tensile and corrosion resistance of the blade.
  • MolybdenumMo 1.0%: This improves corrosion resistance and machinability.
  • VanadiumV 0.1%: This inhibits grain growth in high-temperature processing and heat treatments, which increases the steel’s strength and toughness. It forms carbides, which increase wear resistance.
  • ManganeseMn 0.4%: Increases steel’s strength and hardness. The steel’s hardenability can be improved by heating it.
  • SiliconSi 0.4% : Increases strength, heat resistance.
  • CobaltCo 1.65% : Combines hard carbide with other elements.

Steel N690Co properties

N690Co Steel Hardness

Bohler N690Co steel is very hard because of the carbon and cobalt. The heat treatment is controlled by the manufacturer to ensure that it doesn’t become very hard or brittle.

N690Co’s Rockwell hardness is 61 HRC. This steel is a great choice for outdoor knives because it has excellent edge retention and wear resistance.

Retention of N690Co Steel Edge

Because of its hard nature, N690Co steel has excellent edge retention. For long-term use, you can trust N690Co Stainless Steel knives without frequent sharpening.

This steel has a consistent fine edge because of the addition Cobalt. It is able to stay sharper longer. Cobalt elements increase the steel’s strength and thus enhance edge holding abilities.

N690Co Steel Toughness

N690Co’s hardness means that it is not the most tough. It is strong enough to withstand most outdoor knife applications, including batoning.

Although it may not be as tough as other high-end steels in terms of toughness, it is not likely to crack or chip under stress.

N690Co Steel Wear resistance

The Vanadium, Chromium and Co-incorporation of N690Co steel provide excellent wear resistance. This steel is also harder than any other knife steels available because it contains Cobalt, a hard metal.

Knives made of N690Co will last a lifetime, even with regular use and sharpening.

N690Co steel Corrosion resistance

The high level of chromium content in N690Co Stainless Steel makes it a great choice for corrosion resistance. This steel is resistant to rust, even in salty, humid or wet environments.

This feature makes N690Co bladesteel ideal for outdoor and surgical knives.

Sharpening N690Co steel

N690Co steel, as mentioned above, maintains a sharp edge for a very long time. It does get dull with time, so it needs to be sharpened.

N690Co blade steel can be sharpened easily, unlike other hard steels. Convectional sharpening tools can be used at home and in the field to achieve a sharp edge.

Machinability of N690Co

Molybdenum is a component of N690Co Knife Steel. This helps with machinability. This steel is loved by knife makers because it is simple to use and easy on the tools.

N690Co steel equivalents

N690Co VS. S30V

Both N690Co and S30V knife steels have the same corrosion resistance and hardness. While S30V is more durable and harder to sharpen, it has a better edge retention.

N690Co vs. D2

D2 steel is a high end tool steel that has a higher Rockwell hardness than N690Co Stainless Steel and better edge retention. D2 steel edge retention can be found in the Magnacut Steel range.

N690Co, on the other hand is more corrosion resistant than D2, because D2 isn’t stainless steel and N690Co a stainless steel. D2 steel is easier to sharpen because of its increased wear resistance.

N690Co vs. 154CM

Steel 154CM is hardened and corrosion resistant. It can also be sharpened easily. N690Co Stainless Steel offers greater edge retention and corrosion resistance than 154CM.

N690Co vs. VG10

Bohler N690Co is very similar to VG10 because of the addition cobalt in their alloy composition. N690Co has a greater amount of chromium than VG 10, and is therefore more resistant to corrosion.

N690Co steel and VG10 steel have identical Rockwell hardness levels, so they offer the same degree of edge retention as well as wear resistance. Edge retention will vary depending on heat treatment and blade geometry.

What is the best N690Co steel for knives?

Yes! Yes! N690Co stainless steel is a good knife steel. It is hardened to a high degree, which makes it more resistant to wear and edge retention. It is more durable than its brothers Bohler and Steel.

About the author

Hi, my name is Jaba Ray. I'm a knife expert and researcher. I am the creator of, your one-stop site for everything related to knives. I love people who need suitable steel or knife for their cook because I'm also a food lover. I work with a team of people who've always had a passion for knives and blades on this site.

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