Tool Steel and Through Hardening

Using our sealed quench, vacuum furnaces or neutral salt bath

The material used tells us the hardening temperature and the component size gives some guidance to the required time at the hardening temperature.

Components are typically heated to between 780°c and 1220°c for a predetermined time to transform the micro structure into austenite.

Heating in our vacuum furnaces, or sealed quench furnaces or salt pots ensures an oxygen free atmosphere so preventing any oxidization and decarburization to the component surface.

Once the micro structure has equalised at the austenite transformation temperature we allow the component to soak at temperature, which can be as short as a few minutes to maybe a couple of hours depending on the component section.

The component is now ready to be quenched as rapidly as possible to retain the austenite. We use a nitrogen gas quench in our vacuum furnaces and an oil quench when heated in our sealed quench or salt bath.


We have a selection of various capacity air circulating tempering furnaces.

Once in the hardened condition components are too hard and brittle and have to be tempered back to the desired hardness.

Some materials stipulate a double or triple temper but most hardened steels require a single temper. Tempering temperatures are usually between 150°c and 550°c and the time at temperature is again dictated by the component section with the time starting once the component has equalized at the set temperature.

Vacuum from Huyton
Vacuum from Huyton
Vacuum from Huyton