Amongst other applications, it has been widely used to make such things as punches, engravers, screwdrivers. Sheffield silver steel is used in France as a blade steel for straight razors. In Finland, German silver steel was and still is widely used for Puukko knives.
The composition is defined by UK specification BS-1407, and is as follows: carbon 0.95–1.25, manganese 0.25–0.45, chromium 0.35–0.45, silicon 0.40 max. In the annealed state it has a hardness of 27 HRC. It can be hardened to 64 HRC.
The European/Werkstoff equivalent grades are 1.2210 / 115CrV3 with a composition of: carbon 1.10–1.25, manganese 0.20–0.40, chromium 0.50–0.80, silicon 0.15–0.30, vanadium 0.07–0.12