Is S30V Steel Good for Knives?

We need knives for our daily work. So we all want a knife with the best steel so that we can cut anything sharply. Here is the best steel for knives – S30V steel.

In this article, I will tell you the answer to the question in your mind – Is S30V steel good? You need the best steel for your knife. Otherwise, there can be stains, rust, and corrosion in your knives, which will create problems in cutting anything smoothly.

So you need the best stainless steel with the best components. That steel is S30V. If you want to know more details about S30V steel, please continue reading. We will tell you everything about S30V steel in detail. So let’s dive into it. 

What Is S30V Steel? 

Is S30V Steel Good?

Before knowing that, is S30V steel good? You should know the definition of S30V steel. S30V steel is martensitic which is stainless. This is high-quality steel.

There is a combination of corrosion resistance, wear resistance, and toughness in this high-quality stainless steel. Normal steel has chromium carbides in its formation, but there are vanadium carbides in the formation of S30V which are more effective.

This steel is generally used for making pocket knives and high-quality kitchen knives. Now I will tell you more about the formation of S30V steel. 

Chemical Formation of S30V Steel  

S30V is the best stainless steel because of its different forms. Ordinary steels are made of Chromium Carbides, but S30V is formulated with Vanadium Carbides which is a pretty good material and it makes the steel tougher than normal steel. Now I will tell you about the formation of S30V in detail. 

ElementPercentage in S30V SteelBenefits
Carbon1.45%Improves hardness and increases wear resistance but decreases the strength
Chromium14%Increases in tensile strength enhance edge retention, wear resistance, and corrosion resistance
Molybdenum2%Increases strength and machinability
Vanadium4%Increases hardenability and wear resistance
Nitrogen0.2%Improves edge retention and strength
Manganese0.5%Improves hardness and brittleness
Silicon0.5%Improves strength


There is 1.45% of carbon in S30V steel. Carbon improves the hardness of the steel. But high use of carbon can decrease the strength of the steel. It also increases the wear resistance rate. 


Chromium is an important component of stainless steel. It increases the tensile strength of the steel and it enhances the edge retention, wear resistance, and corrosion resistance. There is 14% of Chromium in S30V steel.


Molybdenum helps S30V steel to increase its strength and machinability. The percentage of Molybdenum in this steel is 2%. 


There is 4% of Vanadium in this stainless steel which increases the hardenability and wear resistance of the steel. 


Nitrogen improves the edge retention of the steel. There is 0.2% of Nitrogen. It also enhances the strength of the steel. 


0.5% of Manganese in this steel improves the hardness and brittleness of S30V steel. 


Silicon improves the strength of S30V steel. The percentage of Silicon in this steel is 0.5%. 

These are some main components of S30V stainless steel. As you can see the percentage of Vanadium in this steel is high which makes this steel more tough and stainless than other steels.

History of S30V Steel

History of S30V Steel

S30V is a perfect knife steel. It was first released in 2001 by Crucible. Crucible has been a successful company in the knife steel industry. Crucible also developed powder metallurgy steels in 1970. S30V is one of the toughest steel for a duty blade. This was popular in 2001 and it is popular now because of its toughness. 

Properties of S30V Steel

Is S30V steel good? You will get the answer after reading about the properties of S30V steel. This is made of different components, and you already know about them. These components make this steel best and add some fantastic properties or features to this. Let’s have a detailed discussion about that. 

ToughnessUp to mark, has good toughness
SharpnessDifficult to sharpen but once sharpened, performance is amazing
Edge RetentionExcellent, due to the mixture of Vanadium, Tungsten, Manganese, and carbon
Corrosion ResistanceFantastic, due to the 14% Chromium
Wear ResistanceExcellent, due to high Vanadium and Chromium content


A rule says you can’t have hardness, corrosion resistance, and toughness together in steel. S30V is a hard and corrosion-resistant steel. Therefore the toughness is also up to mark. It has very good toughness. 


We all know S30V is a very hard steel. So it is very difficult to sharpen the steel. But once you sharpen it, its performance will be amazing. It becomes so sharp. 

Edge Retention 

Edge retention is a very important property of steel. Because of the mixture of Vanadium, Tungsten, Manganese, and carbon, this steel has great hardness and edge retention. 

Corrosion Resistance 

There is 14% of Chromium in S30V steel which offers fantastic corrosion resistance. This is an important feature of this steel.

Wear Resistance 

Vanadium and Chromium are high in this steel. So these components make this steel more wear resistant. This is one of the best in terms of wear resistance.  

Applications of S30V Steel

Applications of S30V Steel

S30V steel is known for its exceptional toughness, durability, and resistance to corrosion. With a high level of perplexity and burstiness, S30V is used in a range of applications, from kitchen knives to medical instruments and hand tools to outdoor gear.

  • Knives: S30V is a top choice for high-quality kitchen and outdoor knives. Its sharpness lasts for long periods, making it ideal for demanding cutting tasks.
  • Cutting Tools: This steel is ideal for cutting tools, such as scissors and pliers, as it can handle high stress and resist wear.
  • Medical Instruments: S30V is commonly used in medical instruments, such as scalpels and surgical tools, due to its ability to stay sharp and maintain strength during use.
  • Hand Tools: Its toughness and resistance to wear and tear make S30V a preferred material for hand tools, such as hammers and chisels.
  • Outdoor Gear: S30V is used in outdoor gear, including camping and hunting knives, as it can withstand harsh environments and resist rust and corrosion.

Best CPM-S30V knives

1. Spyderco Paramilitary 2

Spyderco Paramilitary 2

This knife is known as PM2. This is a very famous knife with a lot of fans. PM2 is a fantastic knife. Let me tell you why.

The thickness of the blade is 3.42″ and it comes with S30V steel which offers great hardness, great toughness, great corrosion resistance, and great wear resistance.

The edge will be held for a long time. There is a compression lock in PM2. Which has so many advantages. One is it will not let your thumb in the blade path when you will close the blade.

There is a good placement for your fingers, so it fits nicely in your hand. 

2. Benchmade 940-2

Benchmade 940-2

This is one of the best knives made of S30V steel. There is another version of this which is the Benchmade 940. But that is lighter. The handle is a G10 handle instead of aluminum.

The blade is 3.42″ thick. There is an Axis lock that offers you a smooth opening. As it is made of S30V steel you will get the toughness in it.

There is no customized option for Benchmade 940 2. This is a little bit expensive also. 

Comparison to Other Types of Steel

Now we will show you a comparison of S30V and other steels. Then you can understand, Is S30V steel good? Or not. 

Comparison to High Carbon Steel

High-carbon steel is also popular. People choose high-carbon steel because of its resistance properties and high strength. High-carbon steel is stronger.

But it is so hard to process. And if you put extra pressure on it, it can be cracked because of its high hardness. The more carbon in your steel, the less corrosion will happen.

So it’s good for high-carbon steel. But the S30V is good in all categories. It has so many fantastic properties which make it famous. People like to use it in their knives because of its high wear resistance, high toughness, high sharpness, high corrosion resistance, etc. 

Comparison to Stainless Steel

Though S30V is stainless steel, it is far better than normal stainless steel. The percentage of vanadium is high in S30V, making it tougher and wear and corrosion-resistant. This is the perfect steel for making a knife. 

S30V VS Other Steel

In this part, I will show you the comparison of the properties between S30V and some other steel. We will rate 1-10 on these criteria – Corrosion resistance, Toughness, Edge Retention, and Ease of Sharpness.

Let’s dive into the details-

S30V VS M390

Properties S30VM390
Edge Retention 5/108/10
Ease of Sharpness5/105/10
Corrosion Resistance 7/108/10

M390 offers better edge retention and corrosion resistance than S30V.


Properties S30VS35VN
Edge Retention5/106/10
Ease of Sharpness5/106/10
Corrosion Resistance7/107/10

In terms of edge retention and sharpness, S35VN is better than S30V. 

S30V VS S90V

Properties S30VS90V
Edge Retention5/108/10
Ease of Sharpness5/103/10
Corrosion Resistance7/106/10

S90V offers higher edge retention than S30V. But the toughness of the S90V is pretty low.  

S30V VS S110V

Properties S30VS110V
Edge Retention5/108/10
Ease of Sharpness5/105/10
Corrosion Resistance7/107/10

The toughness of S110V is low but it offers high edge retention. 

S30V VS D2

Edge Retention5/103.5/10
Ease of Sharpness5/104/10
Corrosion Resistance7/104/10

S30V is ahead of D2 in every aspect. 

S30V VS 154CM

Properties S30V154CM
Edge Retention5/105/10
Ease of Sharpness5/105/10
Corrosion Resistance7/105/10

The 154CM steel is tougher than the S30V. The corrosion resistance rate is not so good.  

S30V VS 20CV

Properties S30V20CV
Edge Retention5/108/10
Ease of Sharpness5/105/10
Corrosion Resistance7/108/10

20CV is ahead of S30V in terms of edge retention and corrosion resistance. 

S30V VS VG10

Toughness 6/104/10
Edge Retention 5/105/10
Ease of Sharpness5/106/10
Corrosion Resistance 7/107/10

The toughness of VG10 is not so good in comparison to S30V.

S30V VS 420HC

Properties S30V420HC
Edge Retention5/102/10
Ease of Sharpness5/107/10
Corrosion Resistance 7/106/10

The edge retention of 420HC is so low, and other properties are good though.

Is S30V Steel Good?

S30V steel is balanced stainless steel with so many properties like high grind ability, high toughness, high corrosion resistance, high wear resistance, high edge retention, etc.

Users consider S30V as a premium-grade knife steel. So S30V is good steel. You can use it for a long time without any rust or corrosion. You just need to keep it dry.


  • High Toughness 
  • High Corrosion Resistance 
  • High-Quality Material
  • Good Edge Retention 
  • High Wear Resistance 
  • Hard Steel


  • Expensive 

Final Words

I think you get your answer after reading this article. S30V is the perfect steel for knives and kitchen cutlery. You will get all the properties in this super steel. The material Vanadium makes this still so tough. So if you want to buy the best steel to make a knife, you can have it. It won’t make you sad. 

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