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The 1.2003 is a simple, forgiving and robust steel. Due to the small addition of chromium, it has a slightly better hardenability compared to the unalloyed version 1.1248 / C75. As a result, with the usual knife cross-sections, it already reaches its full initial hardness when the oil is hardened (a quick hardening oil is a prerequisite). Tempered at 180-200 degrees, it has a working hardness of 59-61 hrc. The steel is forgiving and undemanding in forging and heat treatment and usually offers enough power reserves even if handled incorrectly. This is why the steel is particularly suitable for beginners who want to learn to forge and manufacture knives.
The steel is suitable for powerful work knives or machetes. The steel can also be used for kitchen knives, but I do not recommend it for thinly ground laser geometries, as the steel tends to fold or bend in the area of the thin cutting edge.
I personally use steel as a gray element in the manufacture of decorative damascus steel. Particularly in combination with the 1.5634 and the 1.8974, a fantastic silver-gray-black contrast results when properly etched. In addition, this combination can be very easily conventionally flame-welded, resulting in a spring-hard, scratch-resistant, yet easy-to-grind Damascus steel, which is particularly suitable for the side layers of San-Mai (3-layer) blades.
The steel can also be used for high performance damascus steel, especially when it comes to a robust damascus steel for work knives. In this case I recommend a combination with the 1.5634 and the 1.2510.
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Rolled, sandblasted, annealed
The strips are cut with a pair of guillotines and can therefore have minimal warpage, which can, however, be easily straightened.