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In an ideal world, one grade of steel would do the job for every application. Due to the diversity of the tooling industry, this cannot be the case. The search for new or different grades of steel is dictated by the desire to further extend and enhance the tooling life of each tool steel for each application. The most common way to choose a tool steel is to know the steel presently in use, and understand what is limiting its life in its current application. Luckily for us, we have a good understanding of the basic failure mechanisms which can occur in tooling and what can be done to correct these issues.