A-2 Air Hardening Steels Provide Increased Toughness


When steel stamps are made from tool steels, the inherent characteristics of the steel plus the changes that are affected from its manufacturing process and heat treatment dramatically influence its long lasting durability. The chemical composition is of the utmost importance. With the correct balance of alloy metals, marking or stamping instruments provide the service life that ensures the integrity of your final products and keeps your manufacturing costs down.

A-2 Air Hardening Steels Provide Increased Toughness

Air hardening (A-2) tool steel can be used in the same applications where water and oil hardening steels are used. Some of these include cold chisels, blacksmith tools, cold forming tools, hand  punches, scissors, shears, razors, knives, taps, trimming dies, shear blades, knurling tools, drills, woodworking chisels, embossing dies and of course, steel stamps. The difference between this and other tool steel lies in the fact it has deeper hardenability and less tendency to deform during heat treatment. It is used in applications where greater accuracy is necessary.

The toughness of A-2 steel is due to higher levels of carbon and chromium. A typical chemical composition of the type of steel is this:

  • Carbon 1.00%
  • Silicon 0.30%
  • Molybdenum 1.10%
  • Manganese 0.80%
  • Chromium 5.25%
  • Vanadium 0.21%
  • Iron – balance

Various steel alloys are combined with iron to produce the quality and toughness of A-2 steel for steel stamps. Raising the carbon content produces slightly harder steel and improves the wear resistance to a higher standard. The chromium adds value in terms of toughness and wear resistance of the steel in addition to further hardenability. The greater amount of manganese develops the hardenability, permits it to be oil quenched and decreased the distortion of the steel during quenching. The silicon is beneficial for the overall toughness and durability and makes it shock resistant. The vanadium refines the carbide structure of the steel and makes it a better metal to forge with improved hardness and resistance to wear.

Illinois Engraving Improves Your Bottom Line

The Illinois Engraving craftsmen take pride in the precise art of engraved tooling. With a dedication to designing with accuracy and using superior quality tool steels we assure the best products to suit your applications. We can suggest production techniques that reduce your overhead and increase your productivity. Please call us today at 1-800-528-2050 to order your custom steel stamps.