VG-10: The Durable Steel Chromium Blends For Knives

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VG-10 stands for V Gold 10 (“gold” meaning quality), or sometimes V-Kin-10 (V金10号) (kin means “gold” in Japanese), and is a cutlery grade stainless steel produced in Japan.

Takefu Special Steel Co. Ltd., based in Takefu, Fukui Prefecture, Japan (former cutlery/sword-making center of Echizen) originally designed VG-10 stainless steel.

Takefu also made another version: VG10W, which contains 0.4 % tungsten (chem. Symbol = W).

Best modern construction kiritsuke knife- Yoshihiro VG-10 Knife on cutting board

VG-10’s originally was aimed at Japanese chefs, but also found its way into sports cutlery.

However, Spyderco has also produced some of its most popular models from VG-10, resulting in a larger market for this steel. Almost all VG-10 steel knife blades are manufactured in Japan.

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What is VG-10 stainless steel?

When it comes to Japanese stainless steel, nothing is more popular than VG-10.

VG-10 steel is layered to create Damascus steel.

The V stands for gold 10 which just symbolizes high-quality steel. In Japan, you might see it written out as V-Kin-10 (V金10号). The word kin means ‘gold’ in Japanese.

It is manufactured by companies such as Takefu Special Steel Co., Ltd in Japan and it’s one of the best choices for Japanese cutlery.

What are VG-10 steel blades made of?

Here’s what the VG-10 blades are made of:

  • 1% carbon
  • 15% chromium
  • 1% molybdenum
  • 1.5 % cobalt
  • 0.2% vanadium

VG-10 is part of a group of steels used for making knives known as the ‘Cobalt Steels.’ But the VG-10 also has added Vanadium.

This makes it stronger, tougher and improves the blade’s edge retention. The VG-10 steel has a hard cutting edge and a score of 61 on the Rockwell hardness scale.

As well, this stainless steel has a high carbon content.

Compared to Shirogami carbon steel with a chromium content of 0%, the VG 10 has a 15%.

Basically, knives with a VG-10 blade are known for their sharpness, durability, and resistance to rust and corrosion.

They’re also easy to care for so you can keep your knife in great condition for years to come.

How to handle your VG 10 knife

VG-10 steel knives are sharp and durable, making them the perfect choice for a variety of tasks. Here are a few tips on how to use and care for VG-10 steel knives:

  • Always be sure to handle knives with care and caution.
  • Make sure the knife is properly sharpened and honed before using it. Use a whetstone to sharpen the knife at home.
  • Use the knife for its intended purpose. Do not use it to pry or open things.
  • Be aware of your surroundings and what is around you when using a knife.
  • Keep the knife clean and dry after use. Wipe it down with a soft cloth to remove any moisture or debris.

How to care for your VG-10 steel knives

If you’re looking for a set of high-quality knives that you can count on, VG-10 steel is the way to go. But what do you do with them once you have them? Here are a few tips on how to use your new VG-10 steel knives:

  1. Keep your knives sharp. A sharp knife is a safe knife, so be sure to keep your blades sharpened regularly.
  2. Don’t put your knives in the dishwasher. Not only will this damage the blades, but it’s also a safety hazard.
  3. Use the right cutting surface. Make sure to use a cutting board that is appropriate for the type of knife you are using. For example, use a wood cutting board for knives with a wooden handle.
  4. Store your knives properly. Make sure to store your knives in a safe place where they will not get damaged.

With the right care and maintenance, your VG-10 steel knives will last for years.

How to use VG-10 steel knives

  • slicing meat
  • chopping vegetables
  • carving a roast
  • de-boning poultry
  • peeling an apple
  • cutting fruits
  • peeling garlic
  • carving a turkey
  • trimming fat from meat
  • shaping sushi rolls
  • filleting fish

What is the difference between VG-10 stainless steel and D2 high carbon steel?

VG-10 is softer stainless steel compared to high carbon steel (D2).

Therefore, the high carbon steel blade is tougher because of its higher carbon content. But, the advantage of the VG 10 steel is that it takes the top spot when it comes to corrosion resistance, edge retention, and sharpness.

VG10 vs S30V

S30V is a stainless steel that was designed for knives specifically. It contains more carbon than VG10, which gives it better edge retention. However, it is also more brittle and less corrosion resistant.

So, if you’re looking for a knife that will stay sharp for a long time, S30V is the way to go.

VG10 vs AUS-10

AUS-10 is a stainless steel that is similar to VG10.

It is also softer than high-carbon steel and doesn’t have as good of edge retention. However, it is more resistant to corrosion and easier to care for.

If you’re looking for a knife that is durable and easy to maintain, AUS-10 is a nice choice.

What are masanobu VG-10 knives?

Masanobu VG-10 knives are Japanese-made knives that are made with a VG-10 steel blade. They are known for their high quality and durability, and many people believe that they are some of the best knives on the market.

If you’re looking for a top-of-the-line knife that will last a lifetime, a Masanobu VG-10 knife is a great choice. However, this knife type is hard to buy outside of Japan.

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Joost Nusselder, the founder of Bite My Bun is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with Japanese food at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.