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lawnmower blade steel


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LOTS of different steels are used for mower blades, some good for knifemaking, some not very good.
You need to test each one!

I have a student who works on grounds for a local university. He was thinking he was in hog heaven with all the commercial lawn mower blades he got when they were thrown out. Unfortunately they wouldn't harden even in brine!

OTOH I've seen good blades made from some lawn mower blades before.

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Welcome aboard Trevor, glad to have you.

No telling about mower blades anymore, they used to be made from something medium carbon but I think everybody has gone to low carbon due to liability involved in breaking blades and shrapnel.

If you'll click "User CP" at the top of the page and edit your profile to show your location it can make a big difference. IFI is represented by members from more than 50 countries and a lot of info is locatin specific.


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I replaced mower blades on my riding mower this year, and did some research into it first. The majority are any of case hardened, edge hardened, carbide impregnated, and/or some other modern treatment. There is a standard test involving a 1 inch steel rod being thrust into the path of an operating mower blade. They blade can do anything but fracture, so they have gone "exotic" on the manufacturing methods and materials.

Professional consumers demand a blade that can be resharpened many times, so edge treatment can run deep.

Spark test first in several places on the blade, and have happy practice.


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I wouldn't use lawnmower blades at all. Other scrap materials are just plain better to work with for knives. Coil springs and leaf springs are almost always great knife material, and come in more workable shapes and sizes than mower blades.

Just remember to always play with the heat treat on a piece of scrap steel before you make it into a blade, or anything for that matter.

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