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Tool steels are prepared for metallographic examination in the same way as carbon steels with a few variations owing to hardness and alloying differences. This article explains what makes tool steels different and how to compensate for it when sectioning, mounting, grinding, polishing, and etching. It provides information and data on composition, hot working, austenitizing, tempering, and powder metal manufacturing and explains how it affects tool steel microstructure, using more than 100 detailed images.

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