Blade Steel

12C27M - Blade Steel

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Steel Composition

carbon 0.52 %
chromium 14.50 %
molybdenum 0.60 %
manganese 0.40 %
silicon 0.40 %
phosphorus 0.025 %

The 12C27M is a Swedish stainless steel from Sandvik. Known for its corrosion resistance and hardness, this alloy is often used for creating quality kitchen and outdoor knives. With a relatively lower amount of Carbon, this steel is better for those who prefer less maintenance. It’s well balanced steel with a good compromise between hardness, toughness, and edge retention.

What are the Advantages of 12C27M?

The 12C27M steel presents multiple advantages making it a suitable choice for EDC knives. Firstly, its high Chromium content provides a notable resistance to corrosion. This feature is especially handy for those using their knife in wet conditions, reducing the need for extra maintenance. Secondly, the addition of Molybdenum and Carbon in the mix allows this steel to achieve good hardness and edge retention.

Finally, despite its hardness, it is not overly so, which preserves a decent level of toughness. It won't chip easily even under stressful conditions.

Disadvantages of 12C27M for Knives

While the 12C27M blade steel exhibits many strengths, some drawbacks should be noted. Its Carbon level, although able to offer adequate hardness, is quite low comparing to other high-end steel which could have leaded to better edge retention. Moreover, this knife steel can be on the softer side according to the HRC scale, which may reduce wear resistance.

Steel Rating

Steels with good edge retention will stay sharp longer, reducing the need for frequent sharpening

Edge Retention

3/6 Points

Toughness is the steel's ability to absorb energy and deform without breaking


3/6 Points

Corrosion Resistance measures how well the steel can resist rust and oxidation

Corrosion Resistance

4/6 Points

Sharpenability refers to how easily a knife blade can be sharpened to its desired edge


4/6 Points

This is a relative measure based on typical market values. The actual price can vary widel


5/6 Points

A higher HRC number typically indicates a harder steel, which can hold a sharper edge


55 - 59 HRC
Please be aware that this rating should be understood as a comparative measure. It's simply a rough estimation in relation to other knife steels.

Is 12C27M Rust Resistant?

One of the key features of the 12C27M is its remarkable resistance to rust thanks to its high Chromium content. This makes it an excellent choice for outdoor use or in humid conditions where many other steels would be compromised.

How Hard is 12C27M?

With an HRC ranging from 55 to 59, the 12C27M can reach a decent level of hardness. This allows the steel to retain its sharpness for a good amount of time. However, its relatively lower Carbon content prevents it from achieving the super highs of the HRC scale that some users may desire.

For What is 12C27M Recognized for?

The 12C27M stainless steel is well reputed for its balance between toughness, hardness, and rust-resistance. It is widely used for kitchen knives and hunting or outdoor knives due to its great performance in different conditions.


In conclusion, the 12C27M is a reliable steel offering good value for the money. If you're looking for a knife steel that is both hard and tough with great corrosion resistance, this steel is a solid choice. And while it may not reach the peak in any specific area of performance, its balance of properties makes it a versatile steel for a variety of knives.