What is CPM 154 Steel?

What is CPM 154 Steel?

CPM Steel 154 is martensitic stainless-steel made through Crucible Industries following the Crucible Particle Metallurgy process. It is not to be misunderstood with the 154 CM even though both are manufactured by Crucible industries.

CPM 154 is the CPM version of the former and thus has the advantage in fine-grained structure, increased wear resistance, machinability the resistance to corrosion, as well as toughness.

Because of its properties CPM 154 is widely used in the knife-making industry for the production of bushcraft knives as well as Every Day Carry knives. It is also used for other fields to make cutting tools, bearings and tools that can be used in extremely acidic environments.

CPM 154 Steel Composition

  • Carbon C 1.05 percent: Enhances edge retention, the tensile and hardness. It also increases resistance of steel against wear, scratching, and corrosion.
  • Chromium Cr 14.00 Percentage: Chromium improves the hardness, tensile strength, and resistance to corrosion of blades.
  • Manganese Mn 0.50 percent: enhances the hardness and strength of steel. If the steel is treated with heat and hardenability is increased due to an increase in manganese
  • Molybdenum Mo 4.00 percent: increases toughness and hot hardness. It also increases hardenability and creates carbides for wear resistance.
  • Silicon Si 0.80 percent increases strength and resistance to heat.
  • Phosphorus P 0.03 percent: Increases the machinability and toughness.
  • Sulfur S 0.03 percent: Increases the machineability.
  • Tungsten W 0.40 percent: is used as an alloying element because of the high melting temperature, thereby making steel more efficient in high temperatures.
  • Vanadium V 0.40 percent: Blocks the growth of grains during high temperature processing and heat treatment, which improves the toughness and strength of steel. It also produces carbides which improve wear resistance.

Properties of CPM 154 Steel

CPM 154 Steel Hardness

CPM A 154-grade steel is hard range of 58 to 62 HRC according to the Rockwell hardness scale which is a great level of hardness. The exact degree of hardness will vary based on the process of heat treatment utilized in the manufacturing process.

The steel is able to achieve an average toughness level of 62 HRC when treated with the appropriate heat. Because of this hardness, CPM 154 is classified as high-end and is used by trusted knife-making companies to make high-end knives.

CPM 154 Steel Toughness

CPM 154 offers decent toughness due to the fact that it is not a very tough steel. Steel will never offer both toughness and hardness. But this steel has an excellent balance between toughness and hardness. Due to its strength it is not prone to break or chip easily and because of this quality that it is the ideal choice for outdoor knives.

CPM 54 Steel Edge retention

One of the most notable areas that is a hallmark of CPM 154 is its edge retention, which is a result of the hardness that is high. The steel can hold edges for a long period of time, freeing you from the pressure of sharpening your blade every day.

CPM 150 Steel Wear resistance

CPM 154 knives are durable. They can stand up to wear and tear from sharpening and outdoor usage. Since they are high-end steel, knives are costly but are worth it since they will last for many generations.

The credit for the excellent wear resistance is due to the high amount of carbon in the composition.

CPM 154 Steel Resistance to corrosion

Another benefit for CPM 154 steel is that it has a high resistance to corrosion. The steel is composed of 14 percent Chromium which is what makes it a stainless steel. It’s not 100% corrosion-resistant however, it does put up an effective fight against the stains and rust.

To increase the resistance to corrosion for this type of steel you must invest in regular maintenance and care. This includes cleaning then drying your blades following use. This will only take about two seconds of your time.

Sharpening CPM 154 Steel.

Since it is a hard-wearing steel, you’re probably concerned about the difficulty for sharpening CPM 154. So, is it difficult to sharpen? Sharpening your edge with CPM 154 is easy; according to Crucible the grindability of CPM 154 has been improved greater than even 440C. This makes it much easier to work with and sharpen.

CPM Steel 154 vs Other steels

Which one is better, CPM 154 or 154CM? (CPM 154 vs 154CM)

CPM Steel 154 is the upgraded version of the stainless steel 154CM. The level of performance isn’t a day or night distinction however, CPM 154 stainless steel performs more efficient than the 154CM steel.

With Crucible enhanced production processes of CPM 154, it greatly increases the toughness of the product, holds sharp edges for longer and is much more easy to work with when it comes to grinding.

Crucible’s CPM 154 production process greatly improves the grain structure of the steel, creating a more uniform and smooth and enhancing the dimension stability. These characteristics positively impact the hardness and make it easy to machine and grind over 154CM or the Grade 440C.

Both steels are stainless steels, they be more resistant to corrosion and rust than the majority of non stainless steel. CPM the 154 stainless steel has an improvement in performance over the 154CM. In general, CPM 154 stainless steel is superior to 154CM stainless, but it is priced at a cost that is higher.

CPM 154 vs S30V

CPM Steel 154 and S30V stainless steelare both made by the same method. The alloy compositions of the two differ slightly and S30V having more vanadium as well as the addition of tungsten. The addition of elements helps to improved edge retention and resistance as well. Vanadium is a key ingredient in the development of vanadium carbides. Likewise, the tungsten enhances the hardness and resists corrosion, even at higher temperatures.

In accordance with the method of heat treatment according to the heat treatment S30V as well as CPM 154 are able to be hardened by the identical HRC. When they are hardened to the exact Rockwell the hardness the S30V stainless steel is superior to CPM knife steel in edge retention and resistance to corrosion.

CPM the 154 blade will on contrary, provide greater toughness and will be less prone to chipping or cracking.

CPM 154 vs 440C

CPM 154 steel is better steel than 440C; it provides better performance in toughness, resistance to corrosion edge retention, as well as the ability to machining. The higher performance in resistance to corrosion is due to the higher percentage of chrome elements in the alloy than those of stainless steel 440C.

The edge retention is improved through a higher Rockwell the hardness CPM 154 over the 440C. The Crucible CPM manufacturing process also improves its grain pattern of CPM 154, which gives it greater edge stability and greater quality. A CPM knife blade made of 154 will be resistant to chipping and cracking better than a 440C blade.

CPM stainless steel 154 has higher carbide volumes that is higher than stainless steel 440C. The only disadvantage to CPM blade steel is the fact that it may be more expensive than 440C.

Yet, you’ll be able to sharpen your edge with even the most commonly used abrasive tools available; CPM 54 Rockwell hardness doesn’t require the use of abrasives that are hard to make sharper.

CPM 154 vs D2

CPM 154 has more chromium elements in its composition than D2, making it a stainless steel. Contrary to D2, tool steel is classified as semi-stainless steel. It doesn’t have the requirements for elements containing chromium to be considered stainless steel. A CPM knife, therefore, will resist rust and corrosion better that D2 stainless steel.

Its Crucible CPM procedure has improved CPM 154’s grain pattern. CPM 154, which gives it greater durability and wear resistance. CPM 154 offers twice the toughness and wear resistance as regular D2 steel , however it does not meet the superiority of CPM steel. CPM 154 blades are more durable. CPM blade is more resistant to cracking and chipping more in difficult applications more than D2 steel.

For edge retention D2 tool steel outperforms CPM knife by a tiny margin and the increased efficiency in edge retention as well as stability could be attributed to the added vanadium elementthat allows the formation of vanadium-hard carbides, which is great for edge retention and toughness.

CPM 154 vs M390

CPM steel is manufactured by the crucible manufacturing industry, while M390 is manufactured through Bohler Uddeholm. Bohler M390 is a top stainless steel that has excellent edge retention and resistance to corrosion.

M390 stainless steel more durable than CPM 154 It is within the range of other premium steels such as CPM 20CV as well as CTS 204P. Bohler M390 steel has the potential to provide outstanding edge retention and wear resistance as well as retaining its corrosion-resistant property.

In reality, you’ll experience better performance in almost every aspect with the top and pricey M390 steel knife, than CPM 154. CPM blade of 154. The only thing that CPM 154 has a head start over M390 steel is the toughness. However, this is slightly off by a margin. M390 steel’s toughness is comparable to 440C steel discussed earlier.

M390 blade steel is more difficult in sharpening than CPM 54, and you will require diamond stones in order to polish it. However edge retention is exceptional and you don’t need be sharpening it nearly as frequently as CPM knife steel.

Is CPM 154 good blade steel?

It is true! The properties of CPM steel are perfectly balanced, which makes it a good knife steel. It is extremely resistant to wear and decent toughness. It also has good durability, corrosion resistant, and simple to use.

For the average user It will be difficult to distinguish between the 154CM model and CPM 154 for everyday use different types of tasks. But, I’d suggest to purchase CPM 154 because of the increased toughness. You never think about when you’ll require it.

About the author

Hi, my name is Jaba Ray. I'm a knife expert and researcher. I am the creator of thesandwichknife.com, 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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