I was under the impression that we were using S2 tool steel (0.4-0.55% Carbon) but I've learned today that we are actually using a modified tool steel with 0.67-70% Carbon. Our parts are experiencing brittle failure and we've decided to temper back to 42-46HRC from our previous specification at 52-56HRC. Now I'm wondering if this increased carbon content is the reason that we are seeing brittle failure. My understanding was that S2 was known for retaining reasonable ductility in the hardened condition which gave it it's toughness and shock resistant properties. By increasing the carbon content, we may be losing these benefits?
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