View Full Version : Tantung, a material for custom knives?


Marion David Poff
01-30-2001, 06:12 PM
Good Day,

I was contacted by a representative of Fansteel/VRWesson. He is interested in introducing Tantung, with it's improved
performance to knifemakers. Following are quotes from his emails.....

"I have been working with a material called Tantung for the past year and have improved upon it greatly. It is a cast cobalt
alloy that has primarily been used for cutting tools and woodworking, but our improved production techniques have made it
suitable (I think) for knifemakers. In some ways it is a similar material to Talonite and Stellite except that it is a casting and contains more carbon, making it harder (~Rc 60). For cutting tools it is valuable in that it can cut very hot and not anneal, keep a sharp edge and is very wear and corrosion resistant. Our new processing improves the toughness and so it could be a good potential knife blade."

"I checked some standard blanks, say 1-1/8x3/16x6 and it's around $40-$50 depending upon quantity. There are some stock
items and delivery is usually a couple of weeks if not in stock. Custom blanks and even shapes are possible as well."

www.fansteelvrwesson.com/...antung.htm (http://www.fansteelvrwesson.com/products/tantung.htm)

Any makers interested, any makers you can think of that I should contact?

Any thoughts?

Marion David Poff

primos
01-30-2001, 07:00 PM
First off, welcome to the forums. We're real glad to have you and hope that you will be a regular visitor/contributor. I hope that there will be some interest generated here with respesct to this new prospective blade material. It sounds interesting.

I kept looking at the name, Marion David Poff. The name looked so familiar. It finally dawned on me. I had visited your website some time ago, primarily the section relating to Talonite, 6BH (Stellite), Boye Dendritic Cobalt, and similar cobalt alloys.

Mr. Poff, who formerly was known primarily as "David", but now thinks "Marion" is perfectly cool has a very interesting website. There is lots of information, and lots of links. I would recommend checking it out. The URL is: www.geocities.com/mdpoff/index.html (http://www.geocities.com/mdpoff/index.html)

dogman
01-31-2001, 12:15 AM
Hey, MDP.
I received a piece from them. I have my design scribed on it and I am going to send it to Neil Blackwood to use his industrial equipment to cut it out, since Tantung is springy like Stellite and won't take to a regular bandsaw.

The topic came up on BF, pub42.ezboard.com/fcustomknifedirectoryforumfrm12.showMessage?topicI D=27.topic (http://pub42.ezboard.com/fcustomknifedirectoryforumfrm12.showMessage?topicI D=27.topic) and the concensus was that it was too brittle and would not survive the concrete floor test (drop it on a concrete floor and see if the blade chips). The guy I talked to said they have refined the steel so it would not do that anymore. As soon as I finish the knife, the first thing I am going to do is drop it on the floor;)

Even though it is different that Talonite and Stellite, it has the same characteristics...impervious to corrosion...long cutting life...hard to work...expensive. One difference is that is Rockwells out to 60RC as opposed to Stellite, which sits in the 40s, I believe. Not sure what Talonite Rockwells out to.

If they solved the brittleness problem, I see it becoming the flavor of the month for blade steel, if it catches on with the "name" makers.

Marion David Poff
01-31-2001, 03:09 PM
Terry,

"First off, welcome to the forums. We're real glad to have you and hope that you will be a regular visitor/contributor."

Thank you, I drop by every now and again, but BladeForums is my main hangout. Too much on the web to fit into every day.

"I hope that there will be some interest generated here with respesct to this new prospective blade material. It sounds interesting."

I think if the stuff pans out, it will take, knife enthusiasts tend to go for anything that works.

"I kept looking at the name, Marion David Poff. The name looked so familiar. It finally dawned on me. I had visited your website some time ago, primarily the section relating to Talonite, 6BH (Stellite), Boye Dendritic Cobalt, and similar cobalt alloys.

Mr. Poff, who formerly was known primarily as "David", but now thinks "Marion" is perfectly cool has a very interesting website. There is lots of information, and lots of links. I would recommend checking it out. The URL is: www.geocities.com/mdpoff/index.html"

Thanks Terry, I have dropped by your little corner of the web, and you have a gem of a site, good info, well presented.

dogman,

"I received a piece from them. I have my design scribed on it and I am going to send it to Neil Blackwood to use his industrial equipment to cut it out, since Tantung is springy like Stellite and won't take to a regular bandsaw."

Neil told me that he had some of that stuff on the way to be cut, please let me know how it goes.

"The topic came up on BF, pub42.ezboard.com/fcustomknifedirectoryforumfrm12.showMessage?topicI D=27.topic and the concensus was that it was too brittle and would not survive the concrete floor test (drop it on a concrete floor and see if the blade chips). The guy I talked to said they have refined the steel so it would not do that anymore. As soon as I finish the knife, the first thing I am going to do is drop it on the floor."

Excellent.

"Even though it is different that Talonite and Stellite, it has the same characteristics...impervious to corrosion...long cutting life...hard to work...expensive. One difference is that is Rockwells out to 60RC as opposed to Stellite, which sits in the 40s, I believe. Not sure what Talonite Rockwells out to. If they solved the brittleness problem, I see it becoming the flavor of the month for blade steel, if it catches on with the "name" makers."

With you on that.

Marion David Poff
www.geocities.com/mdpoff (http://www.geocities.com/mdpoff)

Neil Blackwood
02-09-2001, 07:30 PM
MDP, Bob,
In addition to cutting the Tantung, I'll also Rc test it along with Stellite and Talonite.
Neil

Don Cowles
02-09-2001, 10:24 PM
Talonite is Rc 46-47. I am using it on a couple of knives right now, and so far I like it very much. Just have to remember its limitations: no prying or chopping. Magnificent for cutting, though, and holds an edge forever. Also, because of the low hardness, it's easy for a user to touch up the edge.

Marion David Poff
02-27-2001, 01:57 AM
From Larry Kramer(lkramer@erols.com ), the representative of VR Wesson/Fansteel that prompted my posts about Tantung.

"I have trouble accessing your links sometimes, but I recall someone on the forum stating they had received some bars and were performing tests. I am almost sure that they must have the older product and their results will not be representative of the new stuff. Since I can't seem to get back to that forum, perhaps you could step in.

- Steve Harvey, has an interesting point about carbon level. The fact is that during the processing of this alloy, very few carbides actually form and those that do are extremely fine. Surprisingly, most of the carbon and transition metals in the alloy (Mn, Fe, Nb, Cr, W) are in solution in the cobalt matrix, and so squeezing more of them in does make a difference."

He is referring to a thread at Tactical Forums?.

64.177.53.248/ubb/Forum8/...00155.html (http://64.177.53.248/ubb/Forum8/HTML/000155.html)

Considering the samples, he has contacted some who have posted and replied by email, after that he is awaiting more samples. His email is lkramer@erols.com.

Marion David Poff

s mcfall
03-16-2001, 11:26 AM
I have used tangtung here in our machine shop for lathe tool bits..Tough stuff, Cuts stainless without the resharpening as in regular high speed tool bits...The only thing, The box say's "Do not quench when grinding"


Stan McFall