Martensitic stainless steels were the first stainless steels commercially developed (as cutlery) and have relatively high carbon content (0.1 - 1.2%) compared to other stainless steels. They are plain chromium steels containing between 12 and 18% chromium.
- moderate corrosion resistance
- can be hardened by heat treatment and therefore high strength and hardness levels can be achieved
- poor weldability
- knife blades
- surgical instruments