Hardness isn't everything. For centuries, quenching with vegetable oils, fats and other non-petrochemical materials was used for hardening swords. There was only one outlet for 9260 here in the states and they stopped carrying it a few years ago. Water is an effective medium when the goal is to have the steel to reach maximum hardness. Just to add, I also quenched a scrap blade from the same steel in water, and snapped it before tempering to see what I got- it was through hardened and brittle as glass. A moments hesitation equals a soft blade. Then you have to temper it so it is not brittle. What should I have expected from the oil quench. 26c3 is made by Voestalpine, a Bohler/Uddeholm specialty division. What is an ASTM A36 Steel equivalent? The low carbon content and the silicon in it gives it some toughness. The steel is heated to Autenitic region. Sign up for a new account in our community. Not necessarily. Hardening of a steel requires a change in structure from the body-centered cubic structure found at room temperature to the face-centered cubic structure found in the Austenitic region. Common media for quenching include special-purpose polymers, forced air convection, freshwater, saltwater, and oil. So i failed in my quest to differentially harden my en45 katana, although I did gain the right amount of sori I was hoping for. Magnet? The temp of the oil is important enough for me to test my oil each and every time with a thermometer, I use the oil at between 110 and 120f. Water quench hardening is typically used for low alloy steel grades that require a very rapid quench rate to achieve desired hardness. You may be able to tell the difference by spark testing. Many automated moisture detectors typically measure as low as 0.5 percent, which is inadequate for the moisture content levels allowed for quench … I guess I could get the blade hardness tested once life returns to normal, but in general, when quenching a steel in water, does this reduce the as quenched hardness? Quenching is the process of rapidly cooling a material (usually a metal) in order to obtain desirable mechanical properties like increased strength and hardness. I will do a couple of test and report. Then add how it hardened and the steps you used in tempering.   Your link has been automatically embedded. I spoke to a local knife maker who told me that I wouldn't get full hardness with this steel in a water quench - if anything, due to the significantly faster quench, I was expecting perhaps slightly higher hardness with an increased risk of cracking? Compared with oils, water has lower viscosity. The only way a low tech person like me can figure out whether I want to use the file or not is to run some tests..on the same file you wish to use for a blade. From folks that try and forge a blade on concrete with a claw hammer to those that I can only hope to be as talented and able to make wot they do.