General Information:
Material Group P - Steel
Sub-Group Low Alloy Steel
Tensile Strength 650-750 [N/mm^2]

Machining Steel 52100

SAE 52100 (DIN 100Cr6) is a chromium high carbon steel produced with about 1% carbon and 1.35–1.6% chromium content. It has excellent hardenability and wear resistance. 52100 (100Cr6) steel is used mainly on ball bearings, roller bearings, and other parts requiring high hardness (It is also nicknamed "Bearing Steel").

Hardness level:

  • 300 HB - Anealed.
  • 400 – 650 HB - After heat treatment.

The average machinability rating of 52100 (100Cr6) bearing steel is around 40% (Annealed condition).

You can find here a list of machinability Ratings for different Low Alloy Steels.


  • For turning operations on 52100 (100Cr6), it is best to use inserts with thick CVD coating over a hard substrate. For milling, a hard carbide grade is suitable.
  • For detailed carbide grades recommendations, check the Below Chart, or use the Grades Wizrad.
  • Recommended Cutting speed range for turning at stable conditions is 490 - 660 [SFM] / 150 - 200 [m/min].
  • Recommended Cutting speed range for milling with stable clamping and short overhang is 300 - 410 [SFM] / 90 - 125 [m/min]
  • For detailed cutting speed recomendations, check the Below Table, or use our Speed and Feed Calculator.
  • Equivalent International Designations for Steel 52100

    Standard Name

    Chemical Composition for Steel 52100

    Element Amount
    Chromium (Cr)1.35-1.60%
    Carbon (C).93-1.05%
    Manganese (Mn).25-.45%
    Phosphorus (P)0.025%
    Sulfur (S)0.015%

    Cutting Speeds Recomendations for Steel 52100

    * Click on the speeds below for higher precision in specific conditions!

    ApplicationVc (m/min)Vc (SFM)

    Important! The speed estimation is given for an ideal situation:

    • Most suitable carbide grade
    • Stable tool clamping
    • Stable workpiece clamping
    • Good quality raw material
    • A short overhang of the cutting tool.
    • Nominal hardness of the material.
    • etc.
    Click on the speeds in the above table to get better precision for specific parameters
    Or use our Speed and Feed Calculator

    Recommended Carbide Grades for Steel 52100

    * If you don't understand the below table? Read This Explanation to make the most out of it!

    Grade for Turning

    Grade for Parting Off

    Grade for Grooving

    Grade for Milling (Indexable)

    Recommended Insert Cutting Edge Geometry for Steel 52100

    Honing Size:0.05-0.08 mm / 0.002-0.003"
    Rake Angle:11° -13°
    Land Angle:Positive
    Land Width:0.20-0.30 mm / 0.008-0.012"

    Learn more about carbide inserts Cutting-Edge Geometry Parameters.

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