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Tool steels represent a small, but very important, segment of the total production of steel. Their principal use is for tools and dies that are used in the manufacture of commodities. For the most part, the processes used for heat treating carbon and alloy steels are also used for heat treating tool steels, that is, annealing, austenitizing, tempering, and so forth. This chapter focuses on these heat treating processes of tool steels. Classification and approximate compositions and heating treating practices of some principal types of tool steels are provided. The steel types discussed include water-hardening; shock-resisting; oil-hardening cold-work; air-hardening, medium-alloy cold-work; high-carbon, high-chromium cold-work; low-alloy, special-purpose; mold; hot-work; and high-speed tool steels.

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