As you will probably know, the techniques used in metalworking often create a great deal of friction, as well as a lot of metallic byproducts. That is why metalworking fluids are a vital part of the working with various metals.
They are typically used to lubricate and clean metalwork pieces, as well as being used to cool the blades used to cut the metal, which tend to get very hot. Depending on what they are being used for, metalworking fluids can be made from everything from petroleum to synthetic materials with a water base. They also come in both liquid and ‘grease’ form.
What are they made from?
Metalworking fluids are most commonly made from petroleum or water, although synthetic brands are now becoming very popular too. The specific properties of any one metalworking fluid will depend on what it is being used for and what kind of metal is being worked, which is why it is always a good idea to contact the manufacturer or a good oil retail company to find out which metalworking fluids are best for your projects.
One of the best things about metalworking oils is that they can be modified with simple ingredients like soap to make them more grease-like when needed.
What are they used for?
Metalworking fluids are used for a few vital purposes, the main one being to cool down metal work pieces. A lot of metalworking processes create a white hot heat between the tools and the piece that is being created, and it is the metalworking fluid which cools down both the piece and the tool so that work can be carried out.
Of course, the fluids are also used to lubricate the cutting tools required to create metal pieces, this is for ease of use and so that their lifespan will be prolonged.
High volume metalworking
Metalworking fluids made by companies like Houghton and Mobil are also used a lot in high volume metalworking, where they help to protect against the fast pace and repeated use of cutting tools that takes place when high volumes of metal pieces are being produced at a high speed.
Using metalworking fluids
It is very important that you should handle metalworking fluids with care. You should always buy your fluids from a reputable source, ensuring that you read the instructions provided thoroughly so that you are not exposed to anything you should not be and your machinery is not damaged from incorrect usage.