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There’s something about iconic products that make them all the more trustworthy, especially the kinds of materials they use. This is the case for the Swiss Army knives and their 1.4116 steel. Over the years, both prove to be a convenient pick for those who are looking for a reliable everyday carry tool.
What does this popularity mean for the type of steel used, you might be wondering? Should you opt for a 1.4116 steel for knife products? This quick guide will help you find the answers you need.
What is 1.4116 Steel?
The 1.4116 steel is a relatively high-carbon, martensitic stainless steel that’s nicely resistant to corrosion and wear. It’s quite hard and has good strength. It’s best noted for its use in Swiss Army knives.
Also referred to by some as the X50CrMov steel, this particular grade is commonly manufactured in Germany. Some also refer to it as the “German steel”.
Surprisingly, the 1.4116 steel isn’t one of the most popular varieties out there even if it’s used in one of the most famous knife products in the world. One possible reason for this is the fact that most Swiss Army knives started out with the 1.4110 steel and also uses 1.4021 and 1.4031 varieties. This can be a bit confusing for some users.
However, the latest offerings of Victorinox, a famous Swiss Army knife manufacturer, their fixed blade varieties are noted to use 1.4116 steel. This is a solid indication that the brand is now using the said material for their blades.
Common Uses of 1.4116 Steel
The 1.4116 steel is commonly used for the following purposes:
- High-end cutlery
- Surgical instruments
- Manufacturing of various cutting instruments
Unlike other steel grades, the 1.4116 is primarily used for cutting implements. It’s widely used for kitchen knives and scalpels.
1.4116 Steel Chemical Composition
The chemical composition of the 1.4116 steel is quite similar to a lot of stainless steel grades in the market. It has 0.45-0.55% Carbon, 14.0-15.0% Chromium, 1.00% Silicon, 1.00% Manganese, 0.040% Phosphorous, 0.50-0.80% Molybdenum, .10-0.20% Vanadium, and 0.015% Sulfur.
Even with very little Molybdenum and Vanadium content, the 1.4116 is still able to benefit from the addition. This amps up its corrosion resistance and hardness. It also refines its grain during the thermal processing. With these components, it becomes suitable for high wear and tear usage like for kitchen knives.
1.4116 Steel Hardness
With its low Molybdenum and Vanadium content, it can be assumed that the 1.4116 isn’t one of the hardest steel grades out there. It’s actually rated at 55-57 HRc putting it somewhere in the lower end of the hardness scale.
Does 1.4116 Steel Rust?
Classified as a stainless steel and with its relatively high Chromium content, the 1.4116 steel is definitely corrosion resistant. It also got a PRE Pitting Resistant Equivalent rating of 16 which measures its corrosion potential from chloride. It also has a CPT or Critical Pitting Temperature rating of <10, promising that it can hold up nicely to seawater exposure.
Properties of 1.4116 Steel
The 1.4116 steel may not have the most unique set of features but it still makes for a reliable composition. Here are its key properties.
As noted above, the 1.4116 is a stainless steel with a decent level of corrosion resistance. Its chromium levels help keep rusting at bay. It can also hold up against seawater, chloride, and general humidity.
This feature also makes the 1.4116 easy to maintain. It doesn’t require a lot of special care, especially if you live near the water or in a region with high humidity. This might explain why it’s a pick for survival products like Swiss Army knives and for items that are often exposed to water like kitchen knives.
Toughness and hardness
The 1.4116 also has a decent level of both toughness and hardness, making it pretty reliable for normal use. It won’t easily fracture when great amounts of force is applied and it can handle a good deal of abrasion without breaking. As a result, it promises to hold up to regular use.
With some level of hardness, the 1.4116 steel is also relatively wear resistant. It won’t easily deteriorate even with heavy use. However, since it’s not very hard, it can’t hold its edge for too long. This means that frequent sharpening might be required.
The 1.4116 can also get quite sharp when handled correctly. While it won’t hold its edge for very long, especially with constant use, it’s still very easy to sharpen. This is a good trade-off for a lot of users, making it a nice choice for those who enjoy the process of sharpening their knives.
1.4116 Equivalent Steels or Alternative
With its composition and kind of use, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the 1.4116 steel is compared to and likened with other steel grades. Some resemble its make while others have slightly different features but are still somewhat similar to it. Here are some that are often pitted against the 1.4116.
1.4116 Steel vs 440C
The 440C is noted for having the highest carbon content in the 400 series of the stainless steel grade family. It gained a lot of popularity through the release of the Buck 110 which helped create a following for the aforementioned steel grade.
With a 1.1% carbon and 17% chromium, this steel grade promises to be more wear and corrosion resistant as well as hold a better edge. While it’s widely used as a bearing steel, it’s also commonly used as a material for chef’s knives. This is where the 440C and the 1.4116 steel cross paths.
For serious cooks, a 440C knife will mean easy maintenance. They tend to hold their edge better with their hardness so they don’t require frequent sharpening. They’re also very rust-resistant so they don’t require special care.
The 1.4116, on the other hand, is a workhorse in the kitchen. It’s friendly price tag and durability makes it a dependable day to day tool in the kitchen.
1.4116 Steel vs 7CR17MOV Steel
A steel grade that’s making quite a buzz as of late is the 7CR17MOV steel. This high-carbon stainless steel is becoming known as an underrated material for knives as it promises versatility and affordability.
This is pretty much where the 7CR17MOV and the 1.4116 intersect. They’re both solid budget picks for those who want something that can rough it out without having to spend a lot of money. With the 7CR17MOV’s higher chromium and carbon content, however, it promises to be a bit tougher and hold its edge a bit better than the other.
Like the 1.4116, the 7CR17MOV is also used in survival and tactical knives as well as chef’s knives. It’s also deemed as a copy of the 440A steel as they have nearly identical composition.
1.4116 Steel vs AUS 8
When it comes to Japanese steel, the AUS 8 is among the most popular varieties. In fact, it’s possibly what many refer to when talking about Japanese steel.
What makes the AUS 8 interesting is that it has a small difference to the 1.4116 but it’s still considered to be a notch higher in the hierarchy of steel grades. It’s considered to be a mid-range steel since it has higher carbon content with .75% carbon compared to the .45-.55% of 1.4116.
This carbon level gives the AUS 8 a more balanced profile, increasing its hardness and wear resistance. It promises better edge-retention, too, so it doesn’t require frequent sharpenings like the 1.4116.
Is 1.4116 Steel Good for Knives?
Is it good to opt for the 1.4116 steel for knife products? The long list knives using this particular material will tell you that the said steel grade makes a good blade. They may not be the most spectacular or fanciest out there but they deliver good results.
This is particularly true for those who are looking for good, budget-friendly options that they won’t feel bad about using heavily and maybe even abusing. With its friendly price and hardiness, the 1.4116 already proved itself to be capable of handling regular use quite well.
Pros & Cons of 1.4116 Steel
Best 1.4116 Steel Knives
Interested enough to look for the best 1.4116 steel knives in the market today? With everything said above, this shouldn’t be surprising. Here are some of the most popular picks that are worth looking into:
#1: Kitchen Knife Set With Block: 8 Piece German Knives
- Package Dimensions: 17.5 x 15.4 x 4.5 inches
- Item Weight: 12.03 pounds
- Includes: Chef Knife 8″, Kiritsuke Knife 8″, Bread Knife 8″,
Santoku Knife 7″, Nakiri Knife 6.5″, Boning Knife 6″
Utility Knife 5.5″, Paring Knife 3.5″
Even without a homecook in residence, getting good kitchen knives is necessary for homeowners. Unfortunately, the process can be quite tricky as there are tons of options available. Those who are clueless about what they need will surely find the task overwhelming.
This is where knife sets made with 1.4116 steel like the Oxford Chef Teutonic Series Kitchen Knife Set with Block: 8 Piece German Knives come in handy. This set can be a quick solution for those who are not sure about what to get but still don’t want to end up with crap.
For starters, its material offers a nice balance between hardness and ease of sharpening. And since it’s made of stainless steel, maintenance is fuss-free.
What makes it a solid choice, however, is its design and build. Its sandalwood handle and the acacia wood knife block adds more charm to the package. It might not necessarily be the finest or most expensive kitchen knife set out there but it also won’t look cheap.
#2: Kitchen Knife Sets 7 Pieces Knife Set
- Blade Material: Stainless Steel
- Blade Edge: Serrated
- Handle: G10
- Style: Knife Block set
- Includes: 8-inch Chef s Knife set , 8-inch Bread Knife, 8-inch Slicing Knife, 7-inch Santoku Knife, 6-inch Boning Knife , 5-inch Utility knife, 3.5-inch Paring Knife Stainless steel,
Those who are on a budget will find the Best.Buy.Damascus1 German Stainless Steel Kitchen Knife Sets 7 Pieces Knife Set an attractive option for its friendly price tag. With 19 pieces of knives made with 1.4116 steel, it’s a practical choice for those who want great value for their money.
This knife set may not look as stylish as the previous pick but for its price, it’s still a pretty solid option. It looks nondescript and utilitarian with its black wooden handle. Its base is also pretty generic with its light wooden varnish and blocky shape so it will easily blend in with any contemporary kitchen. However, as it comes with a sharpener, it offers more functionality, giving this set a stronger boost for those who want the most practical pick.
Nicely balanced and ergonomically designed, the knives in this set are also made for easy and effective handling. It’s also equipped with a non-stick coating making it easier to maintain.
#3: WALLOP Utility Knife
- Overall Length: 9.5inch
- Blade Length: 5 inch
- Blade Material: German 1.4116 High Carbon Stainless Steel
- Handle Material: Pakkawood
- Construction Type: Forged
- Number of Pieces: 4
Hailed by many experts as one of the best kitchen knives in the market today, the Wallop Utility Knife can be a great option for those who want to build their kitchen knife range by piece. Sets may be convenient but they can also be quite generic. Those who are more particular about the feel and performance of their kitchen knives would be better off to curate their own set.
What makes this item notable is its nice balance. Its 14-16 degree edges promise good handling and performance. Combined with its ergonomic design, it promises great versatility, allowing it to be an all-around tool in the kitchen.
As a part of the Jane Series, this particular knife can also be paired with a few other pieces from the same brand. It can also be purchased with a matching block to achieve its full aesthetic potential. Just take note of its size, however, as it can be quite tall and might take up a lot of vertical space under kitchen cabinets.
#4: KEEMAKE Utility Kitchen Knife
- Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 0.96 x 0.08 inch
- Item Weight: 6.4 ounces
- Overall Length: 9.5 inch
- Blade Length: 5 inch
- Handle Length: 4.5 inch
- Blade Angle: 12-15° double side
- Handle Material: Pakkawood
- Blade Edge: German 1.4116 High Carbon Stainless Steel
Completing the 1.4116 steel review list is the Keemake Utility Kitchen Knife. Like the Wallop Utility Knife, this is a budget-friendly, versatile, all-around kitchen knife. It’s a good place to start when building a solid set of kitchen knives piece by piece.
A part of the D2 series, this item is said to be manufactured through a very careful process that takes up to 95 days. It’s paired with a charming pakkawood handle with rivets, promising sturdiness, durability, and comfortable handling.
Weighing 111g, this versatile knife has enough heft for all sorts of cutting and slicing movements but not too heavy to tire out the user right away. It has a solid build as well, guaranteeing that it can handle regular wear and tear.
The 1.4116 steel may not be the fanciest steel grade available but with its wide use, it has proven itself to be more than capable of delivering good results. As a hardy stainless steel, it promises convenience, practicality, and reliability for various purposes.
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