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topic 8834

Soft stainless steel


Is there a process that can harden a 430 stainless steel screw? This screw is cold worked and the phillips head drive is too soft to removed a tightened screw. Therefor causing damage to the soft Phillips drive.

Ken Rothrauff
Nordson Corp. - Atlanta,GA,U.S.A.


Hello Ken!

Well, 430 is a ferritic grade of stainless steel, and is not hardenable by heat treatment. Nor will it work harden readily. If you need a hardenable stainless steel, I would suggest a 440 grade, or maybe one of the PH grades like 17-4.

The nickel development institute offers a superb 'book' called Design Guidelines for Stainless Steel which describes the various grades is good detail, for free. Go to and seek out publication # 9014. Then fill out the form and they'll send it to you.

Hope this helps!

lee gearhart
Lee Gearhart
metallurgist - E. Aurora, New York


It might not be the screws hardness that is the problem. The problem might be corrosion if the screw is going into a dissimilar metal such as aluminium

Martin Trigg-Hogarth
Martin Trigg-Hogarth
surface treatment shop - Stroud, Glos, England

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