Purity of knife steel

Non-metallic inclusions, shown in picture below, are always weak points in the steel. They are starting points for corrosion and crack initiation points that reduces toughness.

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Sandvik chromium knife steels have been used for decades all over the world in the food and health care industries because of their high level of purity considering non-metallic inclusions.

Steel of 440C type

Sandvik 12C27 knife steel

The yellow arrow in the picture at the left shows one example of a non-metallic inclusion that may act as a starting point for corrosion and cracks. The Sandvik steel to the right has much lower impurity content and is free from primary carbides, enabling a very high toughness and good corrosion resistance.