440a Stainless Steel vs D2 – What’s the Difference

440a Stainless Steel vs D2

If you’re in the market for a knife, you already know that not all blades are created equal. Two popular types of steel are 440a stainless steel and D2 steel, but what’s the difference? It’s important to understand the properties of each type of steel before making a purchase, so we’ve compiled a guide to help you make an informed decision.

Difference Between 440a Stainless Steel and D2


440a stainless steel belongs to the 400 series of stainless steel, which contains up to 18% chromium. It also has a relatively low amount of carbon and is known for being softer than other types of steel. D2 steel, on the other hand, is a high-carbon, high-chromium tool steel known for its excellent hardness and wear resistance.


D2 steel is one of the hardest types available, with a Rockwell hardness of 60-62. This makes it ideal for heavy-duty tasks that require a durable edge, such as chopping or slicing through tough materials. 440a stainless steel, on the other hand, has a lower Rockwell hardness of 55-57, which makes it softer and more flexible.

Corrosion Resistance

440a stainless steel has good corrosion resistance but is not as resistant to rust as some other types of stainless steel. D2 steel has excellent corrosion resistance, which makes it a popular choice for outdoor, marine, and hunting knives.


Because of its high hardness, D2 steel can be more challenging to sharpen than 440a stainless steel. It requires more effort and skill to sharpen and maintain a fine edge. However, once sharpened, the edge can last longer. 440a stainless steel is much easier to sharpen and is a good choice for those who want a knife that’s easy to maintain.


D2 steel is a premium steel that comes with a higher price tag. It’s often used in high-end, custom knives or premium production knives. 440a stainless steel is more affordable and often found in budget or entry-level production knives.


In conclusion, 440a stainless steel and D2 steel have unique properties and advantages. If you prioritize hardness and wear resistance over ease of maintenance, then D2 steel is an excellent choice. However, if you’re looking for a more affordable option that’s easy to sharpen and maintain, 440a stainless steel may be the better choice. Knowing the differences between the two types of steel will help you make an informed decision when purchasing a knife.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *