Blended elemental Ni-30 wt.% W powders were mechanically alloyed (MA'd) for l h, 3 h, 6 h, 12 h, 24 h, 36 h and 48 h in a Spex mixer/mill at room temperature in order to investigate the effects of MA duration on the solubility of W in Ni and the grain size, hardness and particle size. Microstructural and phase characterizations of the MA'd powders were carried out using X-ray diffractometer (XRD), scanning electron microscope (SEM) and transmission electron microscope (TEM). On the basis of achieved saturation on the solid solubility, hardness and particle size, the Ni-30 wt.% W powders MA'd for 48 h were chosen as the matrix which was reinforced with different amounts of WC and/or with 1 wt.% Y2O3 particles. The reinforced powders were further MA'd for 12 h. The MA'd powders were sintered at 1300 degrees C for 1 h under Ar and H-2 gas flowing conditions. Microstructural characterizations of the sintered samples were conducted via XRD and SEM. Sintered densities were measured by using the Archimedes' method. Vickers microhardness tests were performed on both MA'd powders and the sintered samples. Sliding wear experiments were done in order to investigate wear behaviors of the sintered samples. (C) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.