Tool steel refers to a variety of carbon and alloy steel that is well-matched for tool manufacturing, such as hand tools or cutting machines. Tool steel contains tungsten, molybdenum, cobalt and vanadium in different quantities to increase heat resistance, durability and stability making them perfect for cutting and drilling equipment.
Tool steels are generally used in heat-treated states. With carbon content between 0.7% and 1.4%, tool steel is manufactured under carefully controlled conditions to produce the required quality. Proper heat treatment of these steel are important for proper performance. The suitability of tool steel comes from its characteristic hardness, resistance to wear-n-tear, and its resistance to deformation at high temperature. They also possess their own special properties such as red hardness, impact resistance, dimensional stability, resistance to thermal exhaustion and good mechanical properties. In order to meet these different requirements tool steel with different compositions are used in production and their requirements are achieved by proper heat treatment process. Choice of steel-grade depends on other things, whether a keen cutting edge is necessary, as in stamping dies, or whether the tool has to withstand force pressure and service conditions encountered with such hand tools as axes, pickaxes, and quarrying implements.
Tool Steel Products can also be categorized by their shapes and related applications:
• Bars, rods, rails, wires, angles, pipes which are long and tubular in shape, are commonly used in the automotive and construction sectors.
• Flat tools like plates, sheets, coils, and strips are mainly used in automotive parts, appliances, cutting equipment, packaging, shipbuilding and construction.
• Other steel strip products include valves, fittings, and flanges and are mainly used as piping materials.