Is 1084 Steel Good For Knives? (Components, Plus More)

Many factors are considered when choosing a quality knife. These factors are determined by the type of material used to make the knife.

Steel is a popular metal in the knife making industry. Heard of the 1084 steel? Today we discuss the 1084 steel to determine if it’s a good pick when choosing your knife.

Is 1084 Steel Good For Knives?

The 1084 steel is good for a starter knife though there are more preferable knives. Its susceptibility to rusting makes its other qualities go unnoticed.

However, before drawing any more conclusions we will study all other aspects of the 1084 steel.

What is the 1084 steel?

The 1084 steel is a type of steel in the 10 series steels. It has a high amount of carbon though not the highest in the series. It is used for making different items including knives which we will look at.

The 1084 Steel Chemical Components

  • Carbon
  • Phosphorous
  • Sulfur
  • Silicon
  • Manganese

Roles of the 1084 Steel Chemical Components

We have seen the elements that make the 1084 steel. So, what are their specific amounts and what is their importance in the steel?

a) Manganese

The 1084 steel has a 0.9% composition of manganese. It works in improving the steel brittleness and hardness.

b) Carbon

Carbon forms 0.93% of the 1084 steel, which is the largest composition among the mentioned elements. It is responsible for its hardness and wear resistance. It works to improve the tensile strength and edge retention of the steel too.

c) Silicon

Silicon increases the strength of the steel and holds a 0.5% composition in the 1084 steel.

d) Phosphorous

It has the least composition of 0.3% in the 1084 steel. Just like silicon, it works towards improving the strength of the steel.

e) Sulfur

0.5% of the 1084 steel has sulfur components. Sulfur in the steel will increase its machinability.

Properties of the 1084 Steel

The wear resistance

The 1084 steel can slightly handle damage due to its hardness. Though it has carbon which contributes to its wear resistance, it has no chromium. Chromium serves as an added advantage for wear resistance.

The Steel Sharpness

The high carbon percentage in the 1084 steel makes it hard. Therefore, this results in difficulty in sharpening but that does not mean it cannot be sharpened.

Corrosion resistance

Chromium is responsible for corrosion resistance in steel and the 1084 steel have no chromium constituents. This contributes to its low corrosion and stain resistance. It easily corrodes or rusts when exposed to corrosive substances.

Edge retention

The 1084 steel has good edge retention. Therefore, it will maintain its sharpness for longer periods of time without going blunt.


1084 steel has great machinability therefore it can be easily cut or manipulated during usage.


An increased hardness in steel leads to a decrease in toughness. The 1084 is a hard type of steel accounting for its low toughness. Moreover, it contains no nickel which is responsible for toughness in steel.

Advantages of the 1084 Steel

  • The steel has a high edge retention thus reducing the number of times you have to sharpen it.
  • It makes a hard knife which will perform most tasks quite well.
  • It is cheap.
  • The 1084 steel is easy to handle during knife making. It can be used by beginners in the industry and also at home since it requires less equipment. It is easily available too.

Disadvantages of the 1084 Steel

  • Low stain resistance. Most of the time, knives are frequently exposed to water and other corrosive materials. The 1084 steel will easily corrode on such exposure.
  • It has a weak wear resistance therefore it can get easily damaged but this all depends on how well you take care of it.
  • Little toughness. This will require a little extra care both in using and maintaining the knife since it may fracture.

The 1084 Steel Hardness Explained

Unlike most steels, the 1084 steel does not have a specific degree of hardness. Its hardness depends on the different heating temperatures it is exposed to.

Its hardness increases as the heating temperatures are decreased. The hardness of the 1084 steel ranges from 50HRC at 343.3 degrees Celsius to 65HRC at 149 degrees Celsius. HRC is one of the units used in measuring the hardness of elements.

Rusting Precaution Measures

As discussed earlier, the 1084 steel is prone to rusting due to the no chromium content. So, what do you do when you have these knives around? The following measures will help you work around the rusting.

  • Ensure you wash your knife well each time after use and dry off the moisture.
  • Do not leave your knives soaked in water.
  • Do not wash your knives in the dishwasher. Instead, just casually hand wash and dry them.
  • Regularly oil the knife blades. Not only does oiling protect against rusting but also corrosion.

There are different types of oil in the market but what works for oiling your knives? Consider using mineral grade oil which is highly recommended.

Mineral oil is made from minerals such as petroleum. Alternatively, you can use cooking oil like olive, sunflower oil among others.

The Bottom Line

Although it does not make the perfect fit for a desirable knife, the 1084 steel can still be used for knives. Its susceptibility to rusting cancels out its good qualities.

On the other side, its hardness and good edge retention are good knife qualities it possesses. Since rusting can be controlled, consider using the 1084 steel when in search of the mentioned knife qualities.

To add to that, the 1084 steel is inexpensive and this serves as an added advantage. All knives require care and maintenance but the 1084 steel requires a little extra of these. When you choose to walk down this road, remember to take extra caution when using the knife.

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