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THIS BOOK began as a series of five educational lectures on tool steels, presented by the late James P. Gill to ASM members at the National Metal Congress in 1934, and published shortly thereafter by the Society in a volume of 136 pages. The subject matter of the lectures was subsequently revised and greatly expanded by Gill, George A. Roberts, R. Burns George, and Harry G. Johnstin, and published as a second edition in 1944. This edition was dedicated to Roy C. McKenna, who was chairman of the board of Vanadium Alloys Steel Company and who had been its executive head since prior to World War II.

Seventeen years later, in 1961, Roberts and two associates, J.C. Hamaker and A.R. Johnson, authored the third edition, which was dedicated to James P. Gill, whose death had preceded its publication by a few months. The text of that dedication is reproduced with this edition. All of the individual authors have been, at the time of their participation, employees of Teledyne VASCO or its forerunner companies, Vasco Metals Corporation and Vanadium Alloy Steel Company.

During the years since the third edition was published, the complexity of alloy steel manufacture has not been diminished. New knowledge gained in theoretical aspects of steel metallurgy, in effects of alloying elements and in manufacturing techniques, the growth of new industries requiring new types of tools, and the ever-changing economics of manufacture have altered the tool steel story. This new edition attempts to record faithfully these important changes without losing, for the reader, the essential background of the history of the subject.

The system of grouping steels more by properties and uses than by chemical composition has been found to assist the reader in understanding the many types and is amplified. Since selection by properties is the eventual goal, property ratings have been emphasized and a relative, semi-quantitative summary of properties for all tool steels has been expanded. As more specific property measurements become available, refinements in the summary are to be welcomed and expected.

All the chapters on tool steel groups have required revision to provide comprehensive coverage of up-to-date information and data, particularly the chapters on special-purpose steels, on die steels for cold work, and on high speed steels.

Finally, the authors of the current edition wish to express their appreciation to Frederick A. Kaufman and Ralph A. Nauman, respectively Chairman and President of Teledyne VASCO, for their interest, support and encouragement, which have made this edition possible.

Latrobe, Pennsylvania
April 18, 1980


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