1015 Steel

AISI 1015 Steel – Properties, Application and Microstructure

AISI 1015 steel is low plain carbon steel with carbon percentage in-between 0.12%-0.18%. This steel in general case hardened for wear resistance. Application of 1015 steel covers machinery parts, & machine components which are normally cold-drawn, cold-forged or cold-headed.

Similar Steels

  • UNS G10150
  • AMS 5060
  • ASTM A510
  • A519
  • A545
  • A575
  • A576
  • A659
  • SAE J403
  • AFNOR X C 15
  • J412
  • J414


ElementContent %
Iron, Fe99.13-99.57 %
Manganese, Mn0.30-0.60 %
Sulfur, S≤0.050 %
Phosphorous, P≤0.040 %
Carbon, C0.13-0.18 %


Mechanical Properties

Mechanical PropertiesAs Rolled 1010 SteelCold Drawn 1010 Steel
Hardness, Brinell126111
Hardness, Rockwell B7164
Tensile Strength, Ultimate420 MPa385 MPa
Tensile Strength, Yield315 MPa325 MPa
Elongation at Break0.390.18
Reduction of Area0.610.4
Modulus of Elasticity200 GPa205 GPa
Bulk Modulus160 GPa160 GPa
Poissons Ratio0.290.29
Shear Modulus80.0 GPa80.0 GPa
Izod Impact 110 J

Thermal Properties

Mechanical PropertiesAs Rolled 1010 SteelCold Drawn 1010 Steel
CTE, linear
Temperature 0 - 100 °C12.4 µm/m-°C11.9 µm/m-°C
Temperature 0 - 300 °C13.5 µm/m-°C13.0 µm/m-°C
Temperature 0 - 500 °C0.590 J/g-°C14.2 µm/m-°C
Thermal Conductivity 51.9 W/m-K51.9 W/m-K
Specific Heat Capacity0.486 J/g-°C0.486 J/g-°C

Microstructure of 1015 steel

1015 steel belongs to class of hypo-eutectoid steel range. In order to study the microstructural changes with temperature, it is recommended to follow TTT diagram and Fe-FeC carbide diagram. For better visualization of microstructure, microstructure scaling is important as it exact percentage of ferrite and pearlite can play a great role in steel properties.

1015 Steel Microstructure

Because of low percentage of carbon, 1015 steel have about 81.5% of ferrite and rest of region will consist of pearlite. Black spots in above microstructure indicates region rich in pearlite, while rest of region is ferrite.

Overall, this steel grade is commonly used either in form of surface hardened steel or in form of cold formed steel.

Main heat treatments and mechanical working operations that can be performed on 1015 steel are discussed below.

Heat Treatment of 1015 steel


Annealing of low carbon steel like 1010 steel is utilized to relieve stresses during mechanical working. This process is called stress relieve annealing or process annealing. For example, low carbon cold headed bolts are formed after cold drawing steel wires.

Cold drawing generate strain resulting in stress cracking of 1015 steel heads. To overcome this, process annealing of 1015 steel is carried out to relieve stresses. Nominal temperature, in this case, is around 545 Centigrade to maintain nominal mechanical properties.

Normalizing and Quenching

Normalizing and quenching of 1015 steel is carried out to improve machinability of steel. Overall, machinability of 1015 steel is very poor because of large amount of softer ferritic phase.

In case of Normalizing, pearlitic region is distributed throughout the microstructure resulting in increased machinability.

In case of Quenching, martensite will form, making structure harder, resulting in increased machinability.

Case Hardening

Commonly 1015 steel is case hardened to increase wear resistance so it can be used in bearing applications. Optimal temperature for carbonitriding is around 565 centigrade. For carburizing, 1015 steel is treated at 930 centigrade for 1 hr.

Other than carburizing and carbonitriding, flame hardening can also be employed incase of 1015 steel.

Microstructure of case hardened 1015 steel is shown below;

1015 steel Carbo-nitriding

Mechanical Working

1015 steel is characterized by good formability, excellent forgeability & good weldability. Overall machinability of 1015 steel is poor.


Recommended forgeability temperature for 1015 steel is 1290 centigrade. Forging below 925 centigrade is not desirable. In many instances, as forged steel can be directly applied in applications.


Overall machinability of 1015 steel is poor in as cast condition. To improve machinability, normalizing, quenching, or as forged structure is utilized.


1015 steel has excellent weldability because of low percentage of carbides. All kinds of fusion welding can be employed, preferably using low carbon electrode.


1015 steel finds application in range of applications that require low strength and hard surfaces. Most notable applications are machinery parts, bolts and pins.

1015 Steel Applications