14C28N Steel Review: What To Expect From This Popular Steel?

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Are you searching for a top-notch yet affordable knife? This 14C28N steel review will give you the answer: Sandvik 14C28N is an ideal pick. 

This steel is one of the most cost-effective steels and achieves hardness without sacrificing the integrity of its microstructure. All upmarket knife makers, including custom knife makers, use this Sandvik steel. Let’s see how excellent this steel choice can be for you in this post.

What Is 14C28N Steel?

14C28N steel is one of the most sought-after stainless steel from the Sandvik group, a Swedish company. Because of its high-quality metallic products, this brand receives admiration from all knife aficionados worldwide. Its 14C28N steel is specifically designed for knife blades.

Sandvik Company

14C28N resulted from Sandvik’s ambition to develop an upgrade for 13C26, a type of stainless steel used in shaving blades. They wanted its successor to be more corrosion-resistant. As a result, this steel appeared with additional chromium.

Unlike most steels with a certain amount of carbon to increase hardness, 14C28N uses nitrogen to achieve the same goal as well as prevent corrosion and rusting.

Chemical Composition

Image credit: @zknives

The Sandvik 14C28N steel has a high chromium content. In fact, chromium accounts for the greatest percentage of the whole composition and gives the steel the “stainless” characteristic. 

Carbon is the second most abundant component. This substance distinguishes this steel from other steels. It was designed with only one purpose: rust and corrosion resistance. The 14C28N steel is made up of the following elements:

  • 14% Cr (Chromium): improved edge retention, excellent corrosion resistance, enhanced tensile strength, and wear resistance
  • 0.62% C (Carbon): enhanced hardness and resistance to wear and corrosion
  • 0.6% Mn (Manganese): increased brittleness and hardness
  • 0.2% Si (Silicon): increased strength
  • 0.11% N (Nitrogen): added strength and edge retention
  • 0.025% P (Phosphorus): increased strength
  • 0.01% S (Sulfur): better machinability

14C28N Steel Properties

The 14C28N steel has the following characteristics based on its chemical composition and HRC:

High hardness

This steel has a higher hardness than other steel counterparts. It isn’t the toughest steel, but it isn’t weak by any means.

Excellent corrosion and rust resistance

It’s not surprising because of its very high chromium amount of nearly 10%. This is why this steel is utilized to make blades that can withstand damp and humid areas. 

Try soaking a 14C28N knife in salt liquid for four days, and you will see the magnificence of steel’s corrosion or rust resistance.

Edge retention

This steel is tougher than other stainless steel because it has a higher proportion of carbon and chromium. Thus, you can rest assured that 14C28N will maintain its edge well. The edge of your blade will stay sharp for a very long time.

Decent wear resistance

The great hardness of 14CN28N is attributed to the combination of manganese and carbon. Hence, you can look forward to above-average wear and tear resistance.

Exceptional flexibility

Despite its hardness, steel is remarkably flexible and not very fragile. This steel will not chip or roll whether you stab or smash it, albeit the tip may get slightly blunt.


All low-mid steels mainly provide adequate hardness and toughness, or prime corrosion resistance and hardness. Similarly, 14C28N provides superb toughness and corrosion resistance to come at the price of medium toughness.

Is 14C28N A Good Knife Steel?

Generally speaking, 14C28N is definitely excellent stainless steel for knives. However, it also depends on the purpose of the knife. If you consider knives for chef or kitchen usage, 14C28N is an ideal choice because of its high corrosion resistance and edge retention. An EDC knife also performs well with regular use. 

On the other hand, if you are after a robust steel knife for hunting, camping, or trekking, the 14C28N is a fine but not the most promising option. There are other steels with more hardness that meet your needs, such as carbon steels.

14C28N Vs Other Steels

In this part of our 14C28N steel review, we will compare 14C28N steel to other steels. The comparison table is based on four criteria: edge retention, ease of sharpness, corrosion resistance, and toughness. The scale is from 1 to 10.

14C28N VS D2

Edge Retention47
Ease Of Sharpness63
Corrosion Resistance44

The two sheets of steel are comparable in terms of toughness and corrosion resistance. However, D2 steel has better edge retention, while 14C28N offers a better sharpening experience.

14C28N VS S30V

Edge Retention48
Ease Of Sharpness65
Corrosion Resistance47

S30V steel provides improved corrosion resistance, sharpening ease, and edge retention. The 14C28N, on the other hand, is tougher.

14C28N VS VG10

Edge Retention45
Ease Of Sharpness66
Corrosion Resistance47

VG-10 steel has better corrosion resistance and edge retention. Meanwhile, 14C28N steel has better toughness. The two steels are equivalent regarding the ease of sharpening.

14C28N VS 8CR13MOV

Edge Retention31
Ease Of Sharpness68
Corrosion Resistance76

14C28N and 8CR13MOV share the same toughness level. However, the latter has poorer edge retention and lower corrosion resistance.

14C28N VS AUS 8

14C28NAUS 8
Edge Retention43
Ease Of Sharpness68
Corrosion Resistance44

The two steels feature a similar corrosion resistance level. However, 14C28N steel has better edge retention and hardness, whereas AUS-8 has better sharpening ease.

14C28N VS 420HC

Edge Retention32
Ease Of Sharpness67
Corrosion Resistance76

Regarding toughness, 14C28N and 420HC have the same point. Yet, the former has higher ratings of edge retention and corrosion resistance. 

Final Words

In conclusion, 14C28N material is a fantastic choice for forging knives for its affordability, excellent edge retention, corrosion resistance, and sufficient toughness. 14C28N is undoubtedly a game-changer for your cutting experience in the kitchen.

Hopefully, this 14C28N steel review will give you helpful information about this type of knife. Share with us your thoughts about the 14C28N steel!


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