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This chapter discusses the general principles of measuring hardness and hardenability of steel. The discussion begins by defining hardness and exploring the history of hardness testing. This is followed by a discussion on the principles, applications, advantages, and disadvantages of commonly used hardness testing systems: the Brinell, Rockwell, Vickers, Scleroscope, and various microhardness testers that employ Vickers or Knoop indenters. The effect of carbon content on annealed steels and hardened steels is then discussed. A brief discussion on the concept of the ideal critical diameter and austenitic grain size of steels is also provided to understand how one can...

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