Spyderco’s twentieth Mule Team Project instalment highlights Carpenter® CTS B70P® blade steel—a high-chromium, air-hardening steel alloyed with molybdenum, vanadium and niobium. Like conventional steels, the particle metallurgy process begins with a homogenous molten bath of high-alloy steel. However, rather than being poured into ingot molds, the molten steel is forced through a nozzle under high pressure to create a spray of small spherical droplets that quickly solidify into powder particles. The small size of the particles forms micro-ingots, drastically reducing the alloy segregation in the steel and ensuring an extremely fine, uniform carbide structure. This enhances the steel’s edge retention, as well as its grinding and polishing characteristics.
CTS B70P is a powder metallurgy derivative of Carpenter’s CRB-7 alloy, but offers improved wear resistance and hardness capability. Its corrosion resistance is very comparable to 440C stainless steel. Collectively, these qualities make it an excellent candidate for cutlery applications.