Tool Steel M2

Principal Design Features

M2 is a higher carbon version of the M1 tool steel (Molybdenum High Speed Tool Steel). The M2 alloy has somewhat better wear resistance than M1.


Primarily used for cutting tools.


M2 is classified as a “medium” machinability tool steel in the annealed condition. It may be shaped by grinding but is relatively poor in regard to capability of being ground. Its machinability rating is 50% as compared to the W group water hardening tool steels which are relatively easily machined.


Formed by machining or forging and then machining.


Consult the alloy supplier for information on the advisability of welding.

Heat Treatment

Preheat at 1450 F before heating for hardening. Then heat rapidly from 1450 F to 2200 F and hold for 3 to 5 minutes followed by quenching in oil, air or salt bath.


Forge at 2050 F down to 1700 F. Do Not forge below 1700 F.

Hot Working

See “Forging” and consult the supplier for information on working at lower temperatures.

Cold Working

Cold working may be accomplished with the alloy in the annealed condition.


Anneal at 1625 F and slow furnace cool at 40 F per hour, or less.


Not applicable to this alloy.


Temper at 1050 F for a hardness of Rockwell C 60 to 65.


Hardens by heat treatment and quenching. See “Heat Treatment” and “Tempering”.

Density: 0.295

Specific Gravity: 8.16

Melting Point: 2600

MoETensile: 28


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