The Story of Stellite

The Kennametal Stellite brand has a long, illustrious history dating back more than 155 years. What started out as an idea to improve the hardness and luster of cutlery and medical tools has grown to a family of 300+ alloys that have transformed entire industries around the world.

1868: Deloro, Ontario, Canada — Hastings County gold rush begins at M.J. O’Brien’s Gatling Gold and Silver Mining Company. O’Brien’s gold mines also contain very clean cobalt.

1887: Kokomo, Indiana, United States - Elwood Haynes began experimenting with various alloys of cobalt and nickel to create cutlery that would be virtually indestructible and non-tarnishing. Haynes would call these alloys “Stellite”.

1907: Haynes is granted patent number 873,745 for Stellite, “…a novel metal alloy…to be substituted for mild tempered steel in the manufacturing of edge tools…”

Elwood Haynes

1910: Elwood Haynes grants license of his cobalt based alloys to the Deloro Mining & Reduction Company (later renamed to the Deloro Stellite Company) in return for supplies of Cobalt metal.

1912: Elwood Haynes forms Haynes-Stellite Works in Kokomo, IN.

Haynes Stellite Logo

1914–1918: Stellite’s first machine tools revolutionize the metalworking industry and are especially popular with manufacturers of engines for vehicles and aircraft used during World War I.

1922: The hard-facing process is invented. This revolutionary process involves welding a surface layer of STELLITE® alloys over parts of tools and machinery that are subject to wear and abrasion.

1938: Philip M. McKenna founds Kennametal. He develops a tungsten-titanium carbide for cutting tools that lasts longer than current offerings and cuts faster, providing a productivity breakthrough in the machining of steel.

1941: Deloro Stellite begins investment casting at its Deloro, Ontario facility.

1941–1945: The demand for Stellite alloys grows rapidly during World War II to help meet the demand to produce munitions and engine components.

Historic Stellite Alloys production photograph
Stellite Not Steel, But Its Master Logo

1956: Deloro Stellite builds a plant in Belleville, Ontario, Canada and relocates its headquarters here from Deloro, Ontario.

1960: Stellite is used as cage material for the first-ever implanted artificial heart valve.

1970s: Stellite begins producing the first IGT structural parts with nickel and cobalt superalloys.

1956 Newspaper Headline "Deloro Stellite Officially Opens Modern Plant in City"

1979: After 69 years partnership, the Deloro Stellite Company and the Haynes Stellite Company are merged under the same entity, The Deloro Stellite Group.

1983-1991: The Deloro Stellite Group expands manufacturing capabilities in Belleville, ON to include: wrought alloys, powder metal parts, centrifugal castings and vacuum castings.


  • The Deloro Stellite Group expands to Goshen, Indiana, United States. This plant becomes the center of excellence for thermal spray and hardfacing equipment and materials.
  • Shanghai Stellite Co., Ltd is established. A joint-venture majority-shareholded by Deloro Stellite Group, was established in May, 1985.
1990s Deloro Stellite with Star logo

2012: Kennametal purchases The Deloro Stellite Group and rebrands as Kennametal Stellite, the Kennametal brand is the genuine Stellite product.

2019: Kennametal launches their Additive Manufacturing business unit and is the first company successfully commercialize the 3D printing of Stellite materials.

Today: Kennametal Stellite manufactures high-performing cobalt, nickel, and iron alloys in the forms of castings, powders, coatings, welding consumables, 3D printed and machined parts. They possess outstanding metallurgical and physical properties that resist mechanical wear, corrosion, abrasion, and high-temperature challenges.

Kennametal Stellite Logo
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