ThePipingMart Blog Metals 420HC Steel vs 8CR13MOV Steel – What’s the Difference

420HC Steel vs 8CR13MOV Steel – What’s the Difference

420HC Steel vs 8CR13MOV Steel

When choosing the right type of steel for a particular job, it’s important to understand what sets different types of steel apart. Two of the most commonly compared types of steel are 420HC and 8CR13MOV. While both are popular for knives and other cutting tools, they offer different advantages and disadvantages. In this blog post, we’ll look at the differences between 420HC steel and 8CR13MOV steel so you can make the best choice for your needs.

What is 420HC Steel?

420HC steel is a high carbon stainless steel that is commonly used in knives. It is relatively easy to sharpen and holds an edge well. Its high carbon content makes it a hard steel, but it is also prone to rust and corrosion. This is why it is often paired with other materials to enhance its corrosion-resistant properties.

What is 8CR13MOV Steel?

8CR13MOV steel is a type of high-carbon, high-chromium stainless steel. It has superior corrosion resistance against rust and pitting, making it an ideal choice for cutlery and being used in manufacturing other items such as knife blades and industrial applications. Its strength and hardness make it an excellent option for many everyday tasks.

Difference Between 420HC Steel and 8CR13MOV Steel 

Composition and Hardness

One of the key differences between 420HC steel and 8CR13MOV steel lies in their composition. 420HC steel is a higher-carbon content version of 420 steel, which is also known as “cutlery grade” steel. It is highly corrosion-resistant and can be hardened to a Rockwell hardness of up to 58. However, it is not as wear-resistant as other types of steel and may lose its sharpness over time. On the other hand, 8CR13MOV steel is a slightly softer steel with less carbon and more chromium than 420HC. This makes it highly wear-resistant and provides good corrosion protection. It can be hardened to a Rockwell hardness of up to 62, making it ideal for high-stress applications.

Edge Retention

Another important factor to consider when comparing 420HC and 8CR13MOV steel is edge retention. While 420HC steel offers good corrosion resistance and a durable, sharp edge, it may hold its edge better than other types of steel. This can be an issue if you need a knife or tool to stay sharp for extended periods. 8CR13MOV steel, on the other hand, offers excellent edge retention thanks to its high hardness and wear resistance. This makes it a popular choice for knives and other cutting tools that need to stay sharp over extended periods of use.


Maintenance is also important to consider when choosing between 420HC and 8CR13MOV steel. While both offer good corrosion resistance, 420HC steel may require more maintenance to keep it in top shape. This is because it can rust if not properly cared for, whereas the higher chromium content of 8CR13MOV steel makes it more forgiving regarding maintenance requirements. However, remember that 8CR13MOV steel is more brittle than 420HC steel and can chip or break under high stress. This means that you’ll need to take care not to subject it to extreme force or abuse, as it may not hold up as well as 420HC steel in these situations.


Finally, cost is a factor to consider when choosing between 420HC and 8CR13MOV steel. While 420HC steel is more affordable and widely available, 8CR13MOV steel is a premium-priced option typically found in higher-end knives and tools. However, the increased cost may be worth it if you require the high wear resistance and edge retention properties that 8CR13MOV steel provides.


When it comes down to it, the choice between 420HC and 8CR13MOV steel depends on your needs and preferences. Both types of steel offer unique advantages and disadvantages, making it important to consider factors like composition, hardness, edge retention, maintenance, and cost when making your decision. By weighing these factors and selecting the steel that best suits your needs, you can ensure that your cutting tools and knives will perform at their best for years.

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