The aim of the current study was to develop an artificial neural network (ANN) model to predict the hardness drop of the water-quenched and tempered AISI 1045 steel specimens, as a function of tempering temperature and time parameters. In the first stage, the effects of selected tempering parameters on the hardness drop value were investigated. In the second stage, a group of data, which have been obtained from experiments, was used for training of the ANN model. Likewise, another group of experimental data was utilized for the ANN model validation. Ultimately, maximum error of the ANN prediction was determined. The agreement between the predicted values of the ANN model with the experimental data was found to be reasonably good. (c) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.