If you are shopping for your first knife or simply doing some research, you will soon notice how many different blade materials are out there.
When it comes to steel alone, there are over 3,000 grades of steel on the market.
You will also soon find that n690 is a popular type of steel. Many choose this steel since it makes for a reliable blade that is highly corrosion-resistant.
While n690 steel has many pros, the material also comes with a fair share of disadvantages. If you want to learn more about this steel, you have come to the right place.
This guide will discuss n690 steel and what its pros and cons are. We will also cover its physical properties and a few maintenance tips.
Let’s get started.
Pros and Cons of N690
Before you buy an n690 blade, it is a good idea to become familiar with the pros and cons of this material.
Depending on what you intend to use this steel for, the material could be a perfect fit for you. However, every steel has its disadvantages, and the cons of n690 may be a deal-breaker for you.
It Will Stay Sharp for a Long Time
One of the main pros of n690 steel is that it has great edge retention. Edge retention refers to how resistant the blade is against chemical, thermal and mechanical factors. A blade has high edge retention when it can stay sharp for a long period and resist becoming dull quickly.
Since the steel is fine-grained, the blade can resist wearing down for a long period. Overall, n690 steel is popular for being able to hold a consistent edge. It is hard to find another steel with as good edge retention as n690 has.
Does Not Corrode Easily
Another popular pro of n690 steel is that it has high corrosion resistance. Due to the special mixture of metals, this steel can strongly resist factors that lead to rust and deterioration.
N690 steel can resist corrosion even in climates with an excess of salt, humidity, and moisture.
It Is a Versatile Steel
Certain blades are made with specific metals for certain purposes. On the other hand, n690 steel is ideal for just about anything. Many people love this steel for its versatility. Whether you are a hunter, angler, or just a general outdoors person, an n690 steel blade will not let you down.
Easy to Sharpen
Many people go with n690 steel for several reasons, an important one being that it is easy to sharpen. There are a few reasons for this. First of all, you won’t have to sharpen it that often. Since it has high edge retention, it will be able to stay sharp for a long time.
Second of all, when you have to sharpen it, it won’t take much for you to get the blade as sharp as before.
Is Resistant To Wear and Tear
Due to some added materials such as vanadium and chromium, this steel is resistant to wear and tear. You will be able to use the blade for a long time without worrying about it breaking down. If you are looking for a reliable knife that you can pass down to your kids and grandkids, n690 steel will be a good pick.
It Is Not As Tough as Other Metals
Don’t get me wrong, n690 steel is super tough and can withstand a lot of force. However, there are metals out there, such as 01 steel, that have a much higher level of toughness. If toughness is the main factor you are looking for, this may not be the perfect choice for you.
N690 steel has a lot of benefits and is in high demand. Since it is such high-end steel, this metal also comes with a high price tag. If you are looking to buy some sheets of this metal or simply buy an n690 steel blade, be prepared to pay a pretty penny for it. Quality does not come cheap!
Now that we know the main pros and cons of n690 steel let’s look at its physical properties. N690 steel has several physical properties that make it one of the highest-end steels out there. Let’s take a look.
Hardness refers to how well the metal can handle friction. You can also think of hardness as abrasion resistance.
A few metals in n690 steel contribute to the high hardness level, including carbon, manganese, and vanadium. Due to these metals, n690 steel has a high amount of durability.
Another physical property of n690 steel is toughness. While these blades won’t be as tough as others on the market, they still do a good job resisting fractures and chips while under pressure. The metal can undergo a good amount of twisting, tension, impact, and pressure without breaking.
Many knife enthusiasts love n690 steel because of its corrosion resistance.
A metal called chromium is known for its high corrosion resistance; n690 metal is 17% chromium. For this reason, the final product can resist rusting even in the harshest environments.
One of the main properties of n690 steel is its wear resistance. There are a number of metals in n690 steel that increase its resistance, such as carbon, chromium, and vanadium. All of these metals combined make for a strong blade that can last years.
Sharpness is another distinguishing property of n690 steel. The metal itself is very sharp and can hold its edge for a long time. Furthermore, the metal is not quite as hard as others are, so it is very easy to sharpen. The main ingredient that contributes to this characteristic is chromium.
After reading about all the benefits of n690 steel, you may have gone out and bought yourself an n690 knife. Before jumping in with both feet, you should quickly review how to maintain the blade properly.
N690 steel is a high-end metal. For this reason, it requires quality care. Let’s see how to maintain this kind of steel blade.
Only Sharpen It When You Need To
The first thing you should remember is to only sharpen your knife when you need to. When it comes to n690 steel, you shouldn’t be sharpening it a lot. Make sure only to sharpen it when the blade becomes dull; this will increase its lifespan.
Clean Your Knives Properly
If you use your knife often, you will be cleaning it often as well. The main rule is never to throw your knife in the dishwasher. Always hand wash it with soap and water. Make sure to use a soft cloth for both washing and drying to avoid scraping the metal.
Keep Your Knife in a Sheath
One of the easiest ways to keep your knife safe is to store it in a sheath. Never store it with the blade out; you should always protect the blade.
There are many different kinds of sheaths you can buy, including ones that strap onto your belt. Not only will they protect the blade, but they can also work as a convenient knife holder.
Store Your Knife in a Safe Place
Make sure to store your knife in a safe, climate-controlled area. Try to avoid storing it anywhere that it can drop from a high place.
If you are storing it for a short period, you can simply put the knife in a sheath and put it somewhere safe. On the other hand, if you are storing it for a long time, there is another method you can use. Wrap the knife in plain paper and then put it in a plastic bag.
To prepare it for storage, simply clean the knife with some soap and water. Most importantly, make sure the knife is completely dry before storing.
Apply Oil to Your Knife
A good way to easily maintain your knife is to oil it once in a while. Don’t worry too much about the specific oil to use; any oil-based lubricant will work fine.
The main purpose of this is to decrease the amount of friction that the blade experiences. Oiling your blade will also prevent rust and corrosion from damaging your blade.
When lubricating the blade, make sure not to apply too much. Use a thin cloth and wipe off the excess once you’re done.
N690 steel is a high-end metal that is a popular material for knives.
There are several reasons why people prefer n690 steel. The steel stays sharp for a long time, does not corrode easily and is a versatile material. Furthermore, it is easy to sharpen and is resistant to wear and tear.
However, the metal is not as tough as other materials, and it is quite expensive to buy.
This steel has a few key physical properties that make it special, including hardness, toughness, corrosion resistance, wear resistance and sharpness.
It is not hard to maintain your n690 steel blade. Make sure only to sharpen it when you need to, handwash it with soap and water, keep your knife in a sheath and store it properly. You should also oil it with an oil-based lubricant every once in a while.