CROMOVA 18 Stainless Steel: What Is It?

CROMOVA 18 Stainless Steel: What Is It?

Posted by Steven Tuckey on

CROMOVA 18 is stainless steel made exclusively by Yoshikin and has a unique composition of carbon, chromium, molybdenum, and vanadium. Combining these ingredients results in steel that is both soft enough to acquire a sharp edge with basic sharpening equipment and hard enough to maintain a sharp edge for an extended period.

There are suggestions that the symbols CRO and 18 in the name CROMOVA 18 are meant to represent the steel alloy's 18 percent chromium concentration. The other elements, Molybdenum and Vanadium, are represented by the letters MO and VA, respectively.

CROMOVA 18 stainless steel has outstanding corrosion resistance due to its 17–18% chromium concentration. Therefore, Global CROMOVA 18 stainless steel knives can tolerate corrosive situations without plaque or discoloration.

Due to CROMOVA 18 stainless steel's superior corrosion resistance, exceptional hardness, and simplicity of sharpening, it is ideally suited for the production of kitchen knives. Under its renowned Global Brand, Japanese manufacturer Yoshikin provides CROMOVA 18 stainless steel for its kitchen knives.

Chromium Cr


Chromium improves the blade's toughness, tensile strength, and hardness by forming chromium carbide.

Carbon C


Enhances tensile strength, hardness, and edge retention. Additionally, it increases the steel's resistance to rust, corrosion, and wear.

Molybdenum Mo


It enhances hardness and machinability properties.

Vanadium V


Boosts toughness, wear resistance, and corrosion resistance.

Manganese Mn


Increases the steel's strength and hardness. Increased manganese improves the steel's hardenability during heat treatment.

Nickel Ni


Increases toughness and strength. It improves hardenability, but not quite as much as similar steel alloying elements. It also significantly increases corrosion resistance.

Phosphorous P


Enhances toughness and formability.

Silicon S


Increases strength and heat resistance.


Properties of CROMOVA 18 Stainless Steel


Depending on the heat treatment applied, the Rockwell hardness of CROMOVA 18 stainless steel ranges from 56 to 58HRC. This demonstrates that the steel is soft, making it simple to process. Due to the presence of Carbon elements in CROMOVA 18, the material has low to moderate toughness.

Yoshikin hardens its knives to varying Rockwell Hardnesses based on the application. A knife used for harsher tasks like cutting through bones may typically have a lower Rockwell hardness to increase impact toughness.

Wear Resistance

The wear rate, correlated with hardness, is a marker of how well steel can survive normal wear and abrasion. CROMOVA 18 has a 58HRC hardness, which makes it medium strength steel that gives respectable wear resistance.

It has sufficient wear resistance to sustain routine usage and frequent sharpening, but it won't last as long as other steels with better Rockwell hardness and higher carbon content.

Edge Retention

The moderate quantity of carbon in CROMOVA 18 allows it to maintain a sharp edge longer than other soft steels. Knives constructed of this steel aren't good for outdoor use, though, as you won't have time to hone them constantly.

Also, knife sharpening is easier with basic equipment, including stones, but they will lose their edge quickly. Therefore, get outdoor knives made of steel with higher Carbon levels than CROMOVA 18 if you want them to stay sharp for as long as you are in the wilderness.


Tough steel is produced by reducing hardness, and CROMOVA steel excels in this application. Even though the steel is not the strongest, it is strong enough to bear pressure from demanding applications without chipping or breaking.

In addition to its low hardness, the composition's nickel and manganese are responsible for CROMOVA 18's durability. Global maintains the CROMOVA 18 steel's Rockwell hardness at a relatively low level to enable it to survive high-impact kitchen applications.

Corrosion Resistance

As a result of its high chromium content, CROMOVA 18 steel excels at preventing corrosion. After chromium interacts with carbon to form carbides, the remaining elements are sufficient to combat corrosion and discolouration. Knives made by CROMOVA 18 are perfect for outdoor use in moist climates.

But when neglected, every steel can rust. To prevent corrosion and stains, take good care of your CROMOVA 18 knives. After using knives, they should be washed, dried, and coated with oil for long-term storage as part of proper care for any steel.

Ease of Sharpening

Steel's hardness and resistance to wear determines how easily it can sharpen. CROMOVA 18 is a soft steel that is simple to sharpen. CROMOVA 18 knives' blades sharpened to a razor-sharp edge quickly and easily using only basic tools and minimal sharpening techniques.

In light of this, Global CROMOVA 18 Stainless Steel is a fantastic option for kitchen knives that may need frequent sharpening before use. Additionally, CROMOVA 18 steel tends to produce stronger thin edges; therefore, edge roll is less common than with other knife steels and only becomes dull through repeated use.


CROMOVA 18 Steel Equivalent

The equivalent of CROMOVA 18 stainless steel is 440B stainless steel. Although their chemical build is nearly identical, 440B has more carbon. As a result, it performs better in wear tolerance and edge retention.

More carbon is present in 440C than in CROMOVA 18, enhancing edge retention and wear resistance. On the other hand, CROMOVA 18 is easier to sharpen and has superior corrosion resistance due to its higher chromium content.

CROMOVA 18 vs 440C Steel

Compared to CROMOVA 18, 440C has more carbon, improving wear resistance and edge retention. On the other hand, CROMOVA 18 is easier to hone and has superior corrosion resistance due to its higher chromium content.

CROMOVA 18 vs VG10 Steel

Common knife steels having Chromium, Molybdenum, and Vanadium constituents include VG10 and CROMOVA 18. VG10 steel is less corrosion resistant than CROMOVA 18 steel because it has fewer chromium elements.

In contrast, VG10 steel has a higher Rockwell hardness than CROMOVA 18 steel due to its higher carbon content. Since VG10 steel has a greater Rockwell Hardness than CROMOVA 18 steel, it has better edge retention and wear resistance.

VG10 steel is more adaptable than CROMOVA 18 and may be used in pocket, outdoor, and kitchen knives. CROMOVA 18 is typically used only in kitchen knives due to its significantly lower Rockwell Hardness.

Is Cromova 18 A Suitable Steel for Knives?

The needs of the knife users determine the measure of quality steel. Kitchen knives made of CROMOVA 18 stainless steel perform well in terms of corrosion resistance, hardness, and ease of sharpening.

Japanese company Yoshikin uses CROMOVA 18 Stainless Steel exclusively in its Global and Globalist Brand kitchen knives, renowned for their exceptional stainless steel qualities and simplicity in sharpening.

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