Cryogenic treating

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ashley_phil

Phil Ashley
Corporate Member
it works for industrial applications, if you decide to freeze your chisel, you better be sure you can shave w/it first.
 

Mike Callihan

New User
Mike
Hock and Lie-Nielsen have been using "Cryo" treated A2 tool steel in their plane blades for years and IMHO it is the only way to go. It should be noted however that cryogenic tempering only works on high-speed tool steel and not on regular high-carbon steel. Also because of the extreme temperatures involved highly specialized equipment is required so it isn't a DIY project.

Mike
 

junquecol

Bruce
User
Mike Callihan; Also because of the extreme temperatures involved highly specialized equipment is required so it isn't a DIY project. Mike[/quote said:
Does that mean I can't just leave my cutting edges out in a snow storm and expect the same results?:rotflm:
 

Gofor

Mark
Corporate Member
As I understand it, the cryo A2 blades will last longer, but the average woodworker will not be able to get as keen an edge on it as HT carbon tool steel. The A2 steel is harder than most of the commonly available honing media. Not having used the A2 blades, tho, I am cannot give an objective comparison.

Go
 

Mike Callihan

New User
Mike
The A2 steel is harder than most of the commonly available honing media.

Mark
I don't believe that is true. I think you would find that most any of the commonly used sharpening medias are significantly harder than the tempered A2 tool steel. The problem has to do with the steel's increased resistance to wear and the patience of the average woodworker when it comes to sharpening.

By definition the sharpening process is one where you wear the steel away by abrading it on the sharpening media. The Cryo tempered steel's improved wear characteristics resist this abrasion process. While there is no question that conventional carbon steel cutting edges are quicker an easier to bring to a truly sharp cutting edge the same can be done to A2 with enough patience.

I do however recommend starting on diamond and then finishing on water-stones. On the other hand I never touch my Japanese bench chisels or any other high-carbon steel cutting edges with diamond. IMHO the diamond has a tendency to fracture the relatively fragile cutting edge resulting in a quick break down of the cutting edge in use.For high-carbon steel I use water-stones all the way.

My $.02

Mike
 

Gofor

Mark
Corporate Member
Thanks for the clarification and info, Mike. I rarely use the diamond on the cutting edge, but I do use it when I need to significantly change the primary bevel angle, or to get back past major nicks in the edge. I am still experimenting with different bevels on some of my chisels and irons, and occasionally find I haven't enough beef to the edge, ergo the nicks and chips. All an on-going process of learning for me.

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