Much of the Impact Fluid Lifecycle Analysis involves evaluating how fluids are mixed, applied, and disposed of. Poor fluid handling equipment or methods can be a significant contributor to fluid waste and cost. If there is fluid on the machine, the floor, and in the part bins those are signs that fluid can be reduced by focusing on equipment. Sometimes waste can be reduced by managing the existing equipment better, but often it takes an investment in better mixing and application systems to truly impact the stamping fluid usage.
For years metalworking fluids have usually been formulated as either straight oils or as a combination of water, oil, surfactants, and additives including a host of chemicals such as corrosion inhibitors, defoaming agents, surfactants, chlorinated fatty acids, and chelating agents. Mixing all this consistently and in the proper ratios is key to any metalworking operation.
Although substantial thought and science go into using the correct formulation of fluid for a particular metalworking task, its application method is often an afterthought. This can be an extremely expensive oversight. No matter how well the lubricant is designed and mixed, it will perform as intended only when it is applied properly.
To answer the question of how to apply metalworking fluid, manufacturers have come up with all sorts of clever ways to apply fluid in their specific metalworking processes. These range from a simple drip can method or oily rags to nozzles spraying on the coil or in the die and/or rolling the fluid onto the coil.
When stamping fluid drips down the press, mists in the air, or covers the floor, it is not doing anything to help carry the frictional load between your tooling and workpiece. That excess fluid represents wasted money and a messy, possibly hazardous environment for workers.