Process that increases the hardness of steel, i.e., the degree to which steel will resist cutting, abrasion, penetration, bending, and stretching, The increased endurance provided by hardening makes steel suitable for additional applications. Hardening can be achieved through various methods, which include: (1) heat treatment, where the properties of steel are altered by subjecting the steel to a series of temperature changes; and (2) cold working, in which changes in the structure and shape of steel are achieved through rolling, hammering, or stretching the steel at a relatively low temperature.
the process of taking a soft die, roll, or plate and making it metallurgically hard. In the process of producing engraved stamps, the design can only be worked into soft steel, but is generally only transferred from hard steel. The hardening process can be reversed. That is, a hardened die, roll or plate can be made metallurgically soft again.