Carbide Grades Explained
Carbide or tungsten carbide comes in many, many grades.
There are a couple of official naming systems that are supposed to mean something. At their best, these naming systems are merely rough guides.
The big problem with the naming systems is that the manufacturer or supplier decides what grade the carbide is. This works about as well as letting restaurants decide what a hamburger or a steak is. We have a little restaurant in Tacoma that advertises the world’s best hamburger. They buy great meat and hand form the patties which are good things to do. Then they give it to a cook who throws it on a grill that is too hot. You can stand there and watch the cook get nervous about waiting customers so she mashes the burger down and squeezes all the juice out of it. What you end up with is a really hard dry burger made out of great ingredients.
The other thing about carbide grades is that they’re constantly being improved. The C-4 grade we sold 30 years ago is only vaguely similar to the C-4 grade we sell now.
This is sort of like televisions. I remember that my grandmother’s television was a huge piece of furniture with a small screen behind a closed door. I just bought a little TV for the desk in the den that is pretty much all picture with a thin border around. When I was a kid we were constantly replacing tubes. We used to pull tubes out, go down to the Hi School Pharmacy and use their tube testing machine to see which one was bad.
My new flat screen is all solid-state and has run a couple years with absolutely no problems.
If the carbide we sold 30 years ago was “C-4” that ought to call the new carbide “C-4 that is much tougher than the old C-1 and gives 10 to 20 times the life of the old C-4 will be much harder to break it much easier to sharpen.” Or C-4 +++ with a star and and *.
Buy Carbide This link is mostly informational. To buy carbide please call 800 346-8274 or email firstname.lastname@example.org so we can get you the right grade.
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