Instructables

Is titanium good for making knife blades?

I want to make an all titanium balisong.

vince 095 years ago
it would not make a great working knife. you could use it for show and good for throwing knives I have heard. I would go with high carbon steel for something useful lol
wandatroy1 year ago
Titanium was discovered in 1910 and got its name from “Titan”, a giant Greek mythology.

Supplies of pure titanium are rare, though titanium ores such as ilmenite and rutile are very common. There is more titanium in the earth’s crust than there is nickel, zinc, chromium, tin, lead, mercury, and manganese combined! The ores of these metals are concentrated in large, easily mined bodies, while titanium ores are dispersed throughout the earth’s crust.

Titanium, which weighs forty percent less than carbon steels, can be strengthened by alloying it with elements such as aluminum and vanadium. Titanium is nonmagnetic, and has fairly low electrical and thermal conductivity. The relatively high melting point (more than 1,650 °C or 3,000 °F) makes it useful as a refractory metal.

The most noted chemical property of titanium is its excellent resistance to corrosion; it is almost as resistant as platinum, capable of withstanding attack by dilute sulfuric acid and hydrochloric as well as chlorine gas, chloride solutions, and most organic acids. But titanium is actually thermodynamically a very reactive metal. Its corrosion resistance is due to a stable, protective, strongly adherent oxide film. This film forms instantly when a fresh surface is exposed to air or moisture. Then it forms a passive and protective oxide coating that protects it from further reaction.

The most widely used titanium alloy, Ti-6Al-4V, is present in forty-five percent of industrial applications. The unique combination of this alloy’s physical and mechanical properties with workability, fabricability, production experience and commercial availability allows it to be economically useful. Ti-6Al-4V has become the standard alloy against which other alloys are compared in the process of selecting a titanium alloy for a specific application.
http://www.omknives.com/technical-information/ this page has instructed the advantages for a knife made by titanium.

titanium was discovered in 1791 by William Gregor.

Mrmilitary1 year ago
A titanium core with a steel alloy edge may be the best option. I'm not a knife expert but it seems it would be strong yet sharp.
Roger4085 years ago
It wouldn't make much of a knife. It is strong & tough, but it is fairly brittle and would snap easily. You could make a show piece, but machining Ti is a problem since it is so brittle. ChromeMoly might make a good knife, and there are lots of other alloys and surface treatments that could make a good looking knife.
not sure you are thinking of titanium. titanium bends much better than any steel and resists chipping and breaking extremely well. it is very hard, but somehow still able to be bent very well. its an incredible metal. we had a ramp for the boats where i used to work, that would bend down like 6+ inches and spring right back every time.
Mr Ivan2 years ago
Sorry I could not help my self! When You have all of the information and just want to share!!

http://www.missionknives.com/why-titanium/http://www.missionknives.com/why-titanium/

Why Titanium?
Corrosion Resistance: Titanium is corrosion proof in all naturally occurring environments. The MPK SEAL knife has been soaking in seawater for years without a hint of corrosion.

Weight: Titanium is 40% lighter than steel.

Heat and Cold Stability: Titanium is 800 degrees (in Fahrenheit) more thermally stable than steel. It will not break in subzero weather, whereas steel will shatter.

Wear/Abrasion Resistance: Titanium is a self-healing metal that forms an oxide ceramic skin over itself when scratched. This gives it the ability to resist being eroded by contact with outside materials such as dirt, sand, ice, mud, nylon webbing, rope, etc.

Superior Ductility: The Navy SEALs have been unable to break titanium MPK’s in over six years of service. This is due to the 12% elongation, coupled with toughness and flexibility.

Tough: Titanium is tough at both high and low temperatures. It resists breaking, cracking or chipping under impact or stress.

Flexibility: Titanium may be flexed or bowed repeatedly without undergoing rupture. It has ½ of the modules of steel; therefore, it will bend at least twice as far before breaking.

Non-Poisonous: Titanium is no-poisonous and biologically inert.

Strength-to-Weight Ratio: Titanium has superior strength-to-weight ratios when compared to either steel or ceramic. It is the alloy of choice for aircraft.

Non Magnetic: Titanium is magnetically inert, and is used by the Navy SEALs and Explosive Ordinance Disposal units (EOD) to defuse magnetically triggered mines. Knives must be sharpened with nonmagnetic sharpeners to remain inert.
Mr Ivan2 years ago
The short answer is YES Titanium is an excellent Knife Blade Material.

With all due respect to the sofa quarterbacks that are fully represented in this forum,

I would like to point out that Titanium is one of the best durability, sharpness, non magnetic blade materials in the world i.e.

http://www.missionknives.com/titanium = tactical knives built for and by ex mil ops personnel. i.e. Field tested, used in most demanding situations not just adventure backpacking or ultra light camping!!

Check this out
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsdRo5jvnXo&feature=player_embedded

I agree with NachoMahma "One should be careful when getting info from the Net" =

Yes that is right check for your self.

Also keep in mind some of the more critical applications for Titanium =

Some of the most durable light weight road bikes in the world

http://www.litespeed.com/ or http://www.lynskeyperformance.com/ or the many implantable hip, knee prostheses made from yes you guessed it Titanium, or say the the largest nuclear powered attack submarine USSR version or the fastest airplane skin = SR71 Blackbird, or even further and harsher environment like say MARS = yep both of the Mars Lander Rovers, satellites, and space craft.

Oh yeah it is corrosion resistant, and 40% lighter than steel = but yes as others have suspected = it is more costly = you get what you pay for = it will outlast steel blades by at least a factor of 10! So amortized over the life of the blade/knife it is actually a bargain = initial cost is higher = but longevity is far superior and physical material characteristics further validate Titanium as a material as being very well suited for demanding applications.
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tmartin53 years ago
Titanium is in fact used to make the blades of some knives used in SCUBA diving that must withstand the harsh saltwater environment of the ocean, I have several and carry one as a daily use and because of the exceptionally light weight I don't even notice it in my pocket.

If resistance to corrosion and light weight are your primary concerns, then Titanium is an excellent material for knife blades and will also not become brittle at very low temperatures as many grades of steel do. However, my Titanium knives do not hold as sharp an edge as a good steel blade. It's sufficient for most utility work, but will never become razor sharp like high carbon steel. It is also important to note that although Titanium is about 40% stronger than steel BY WEIGHT, the steel is so much denser that titanium blades are BY VOLUME less strong than steel. What this means is that your Ti blade must be thicker in order to resist snapping, and a hard steel blade will notch a Ti one. It will still be much lighter than the thinner steel blade but the extra thickness makes it hard to cut through large tough materials or make fine precise cuts because it can start acting a bit like a wedge and must force aside more material.

Overall it depends on what you want the knife for. For example, Ti would make a poor fighting knife because the duller and thicker blade would make it more difficult to inflict a slashing type injury against heavy clothing. If your use is more utilitarian then it has the benefit of being incredibly light and you never need worry about cleaning it or protecting it from rust. I put mine away wet all the time without a second thought, carry it through ocean and swamps, etc. Sharpening is a little different than a steel blade but can be done with some effort, small nicks in the blade or a bent/blunted tip can be remedied by "rubbing" the metal around with a sharpening stone, effectively cold-forging it. It's not the best knife material for every purpose, but for many things it is truly outstanding.
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xarlock6673 years ago
Why does everyone want a blade made from one element? Event the ancient blade makers knew you mixed elements to get a stronger blade. They put carbon in iron to make steel! The same is the case here. Find a good titanium alloy that will flex a bit and have at it! Titanium is hard as hell and holds an edge extremely well. It is a good base metal. Just not by itself.
Well, for a balisong like you're talking about, a titanium handle would work, and for the blade... you're pretty much stuck with steel. But, hey; if you want to, you can anodize the handle and make it look real nice.
roybrox5 years ago
Not a knife expert here either, but there are a few generalities I think can be applied here. Firstly, even though a titanium blade will have the "strength" of steel, it will not have its flexibility. If your knife gets jammed in something, the blade will shatter, not bend. The other major thing is that steel is often used for knives because of its ability to hold an edge. I think that if you were to use a metal like aluminum or titanium, you would constantly have to sharpen the blade to make it effective at cutting anything.
NachoMahma5 years ago
Well, don't believe everything you google. Here's an excerpt from an article I found from your google search: "Titanium knife blanks are very good for knifemaking; in fact, the highest grade of titanium is called knife-grade titanium. Titanium is an alloy of iron, oxygen, carbon, and various other materials; titanium benefits from the strength of the material, but it is a little brittle compared to other materials. Titanium takes a good blade as well as a good surface finish." I'm not an expert knife maker, but at least I know titanium is an element. :)
. Of course! One should always be careful when getting info from the 'Net.
purduecer5 years ago
Could be somewhat expensive...