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Thread: Why did Spyderco stop using ATS-55?

  1. #1
    David Lowry
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    Wink Why did Spyderco stop using ATS-55?

    I just wondered as many of us here at the forum think it's a great steel. I wondered if anyone knows why they stopped using it?

    I know the SS Dragonfly still is sold with an ATS-55 blade but that's all I know of that is.

    My ATS-55 Delica out cuts the VG-10 Delica and also the S30V on the Native I had. It also holds an edge longer and is easier to sharpen.

    If anyone knows why Spyderco stopped using this steel or if it will ever be used again please feel free to chime in.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Spyderco Forum Registered User ASmitty's Avatar
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    I don't have any insider knowledge on this or anything, but it seems to me that they don't use it anymore because they've made VG-10 (Japan models), S30V (Golden Models), and H-1 (rust proof models) their standard fair. I mean, nearly every spydie comes in one of these steels. I know that some of the smaller models use something different but otherwise it's pretty constant. There are some models that use AUS-6 but that's going to be limited to the smaller models after the Delica/Endura 4 come out. The SS Native uses AUS-10 and there are a couple of models with AUS-8 and 440C. But generally it's the main 3 I listed above throughout the product line and Spyderco seems to be sticking with that.
    "A flute with no holes is not a flute. A donut with no hole, is a danish."

  3. #3
    Spyderco Forum Registered User
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    Availability I would guess. Same reason other companies (Benchmade) switched from ATS 34 to 154CM. It was easier/cheaper to get and affords the same performance.

  4. #4
    David Lowry
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    While I agree on those issues I still think that it makes more sense to use ATS-55 instead of AUS-6 or AUS-10 on anything.

    I mean to have used VG-10 instead of ATS-55 it would have to be better correct? It may be cheaper but I don't view VG-10 as better than ATS-55. I am however just some guy and by no means a guru of steel .

  5. #5
    Spyderco Forum Registered User ASmitty's Avatar
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    Well David, to be fair the AUS-6 on Spydercos is trending toward elimination. Looking at the 2005 catalog that I got back in March only a few models still have it. All the trainers but that's acceptable seeing that the trainers don't need the benefits of a premium steel since there's no edge to retain and what not. The stainless Endura and Delica still have it but not once the updates come out at the end of the year. That leaves the Spydersaw (which, like the trainers, is of little consequence), the FRN Dragonfly, and the Jesters and Ladybugs. Now the Dragonfly, Jester, and Ladybug I think we'll have to live with staying AUS-6. Well, maybe not the D'Fly. The little knives (Jester and L'bug) are the models most likely to be bought by and marketed to non-knife enthusiasts. So, from a business standpoint you want to keep the price at a level that your average consumer will pay for a knife of that size.

    Now, about the SS Native being AUS-10 instead of higher grade steel. I think it's the same idea that kept the SS Delica AUS-6 for so long, price. Now, they're upgrading the SS Delica and Endura to VG-10 for the updated models and I think if those perform well in the market then we may see an upgrade of the blade steel in the SS Native as well.

    And, FINALLY, as to the debate between VG-10 and ATS-55, I don't have a whole lot of comparison on edge retention, hardness, or toughness but they seem to perform equally in those departments in what experience I do have. But, I've never been able to get the kind or razor sharp edge on ATS-55 that I can get on VG-10.
    Last edited by ASmitty; 10-16-2005 at 11:53 PM.
    "A flute with no holes is not a flute. A donut with no hole, is a danish."

  6. #6
    Spyderco Forum Registered User Piet.S's Avatar
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    In old threads, I found, people were saying it tended to corrode more then other steels. ATS-55 is basicly ATS-34 without the extreme amount of Molybdene (4%). ATS-34 has that to withstand very high temperatures. A knife doesn't have to, so cutting on Moly gives you just as good a steel for a better price.
    Last edited by Piet.S; 10-18-2005 at 05:41 AM.

  7. #7
    Spyderco Forum Registered User
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    Arrow AUS-10>>not bad at all

    Now I do not like AUS-6 at all. I have long since traded both knives I had which had AUS-6 for the blade steel. But I still have 2 knives with AUS-10 and the one I use periodically does really well. As I look on my Spyderco Steel Chart I see that AUS-10 is right up there with ATS-34 as far as carbon content. So please let's not beat up AUS-10 without probable cause.

    David raises a very interesting point. I have myself wondered on many occasions as to why Spyderco quit using ATS-55. It is truly one of my personal favorite blade steels of all time. My main EDC ( Big Dyad) has ATS-55 and it cuts like a dream and needs very little sharpening in comparison to other blade steels including S30V.

    As far as I know I think Spyderco is the only commercial knife company here in the states that used ATS-55 that I know of. Correct me if I'm wrong on that one. But for the record I am keeping all of the ATS-55 knives in my collection for the long haul for that very reason. In about 5 to 10 years there will be guys & gals that will be looking to collect ATS-55 knives because of the fact there were not many of them made overall. But why did they quit using it? I would think it would be super in fixed blades?
    Long Live the SPYDEREDGE Spyderco Hawkbills RULE!!

  8. #8
    Spyderco Forum Registered User dialex's Avatar
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    I love ATS-55 too. I understand that VG-10 has better corrosion resistance and its molecular structure makes it more suitable for serrated blades. I am very pleased of my VG-10 knives, but I'd pick an ATS-55 one anytime.
    The mind commands the body and it obeys. The mind orders itself and meets resistance.

  9. #9
    Spyderco Forum Registered User
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    Question But WhY??!!!!!!!

    I agree with all 1000% that ATS-55 is one of the top 3 blade steels that Spyderco ever used. We are in agreement on that one. But let's don't deviate away from what David is trying to find out. and that is

    WHY DID SPYDERCO EVER QUIT USING ATS-55????????????

    Inquiring minds like me want to know. I think that the GENERAL needs to chime in on this one
    Long Live the SPYDEREDGE Spyderco Hawkbills RULE!!

  10. #10
    Spyderco Forum Registered User Tim8557's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=JD

    Inquiring minds like me want to know. I think that the GENERAL needs to chime in on this one [/QUOTE]

    Or better yet......Sal.
    Tim Dowling
    "Remember, Amateurs built the Ark.....but Professionals built the Titanic !"

  11. #11
    Spyderco Forum Registered User
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    We introduced ATS-55 (Goddard FRN) and VG-10 (Moran) at the same time.

    VG-10 tested better both in the lab and in the field so we dropped one and kept the other. VG-10 is more expensive than ATS-55.

    sal

  12. #12
    David Lowry
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    Thanks Sal! I appreciate you letting us know.

    You guys are the ones who know so I trust that. Like I said I am by no means an expert but ATS-55 seemed pretty good.

    Again, thanks for indulging me.

  13. #13
    Spyderco Forum Registered User chux's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sal
    VG-10 tested better both in the lab and in the field so we dropped one and kept the other. VG-10 is more expensive than ATS-55.

    sal
    I'd put up with the inconvenience of lower prices for the benefit of using ATS-55
    Byrši betri ber-at mašur brautu aš en sé manvit mikiš.

  14. #14
    Spyderco Forum Registered User
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    ATS-55 was a very good steel. VG-10 was just a little better performing especially in corrosion resistance.

    Hi Chux, We generally opt for the better performance rather than the lower price.

    sal

  15. #15
    Spyderco Forum Registered User greencobra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chux
    I'd put up with the inconvenience of lower prices for the benefit of using ATS-55
    Yeah, but how much lower would the cost be? The prices now are really not out of line. (don't get any ideas Sal. lol)

  16. #16
    Spyderco Forum Registered User Mr Blonde's Avatar
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    Yup Piet S. is on the money here (Sal too ofcourse ). The main ELU online complaint about ATS55 was that it tended to rust quite easily.

    Wouter

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  17. #17
    Spyderco Forum Registered User VWTattoo's Avatar
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    A voice from above...

    Ask and Ye shall receive...
    Isn't it nice that Mr. Glesser helped end the speculation?

    I also agree that the ATS-55 models are ones to keep your eye on, if only for the low production numbers in comparison with older or newer steels. I think ATS-55 has a nice luster to it, and it does sharpen very well, and cuts superbly. I like it a lot, but then I also like the Gin-1 and G-2 stuff, so a steel snob I am not. ( I rarely have to chop down a tree or skin a moose with my knife, so I am not as demanding of my knives as others may be. As long as it is sharp, and cuts what I want, I am good to go. )
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  18. #18
    Spyderco Forum Registered User Irish Lager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ASmitty
    Now the Dragonfly, Jester, and Ladybug I think we'll have to live with staying AUS-6.
    If i am not mistaken, isnt the FRN Dragonfly AUS8 now, i think they did away w/ the Aus6 one completely.

    If i am wrong, please correct me, this is how we learn.
    J
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  19. #19
    David Lowry
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    Yes. The FRN D'Fly I have is AUS-8 and it kicks butt.

  20. #20
    Spyderco Forum Registered User ASmitty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Irish Lager
    If i am not mistaken, isnt the FRN Dragonfly AUS8 now, i think they did away w/ the Aus6 one completely.

    If i am wrong, please correct me, this is how we learn.
    J
    Sure, yeah, could be. I don't own a D'Fly. I was just looking up this stuff online and the info I found said AUS-6.
    "A flute with no holes is not a flute. A donut with no hole, is a danish."

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