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Roscomac, a specialist subcontractor of precision-engineered components, has switched cutting fluids to Blasomill 22, supplied by Jemtech.

Following a fire in one of Roscomac’s machine tools, the company decided to take steps to address the issue, reduce manufacturing costs, improve performance and enhance process security.

Roscomac believed that the fire was caused, in part, by the low flash point of its existing neat cutting oil.

Tim Osman, Roscomac’s sliding-head supervisor, said: ‘We had been using this particular oil on our sliding-head section as it was a considerably cheaper-per-litre option than those on offer by suppliers such as Jemtech.

This particular oil had been in use for some time and had been causing a number of issues, in particular poor tool life.

He continued: ‘The issues were more noticeable on one particular stainless-steel threaded component.

‘We were only managing 300 parts per insert, with almost 100 per cent inspection being required on the threads.

‘Inserts were being changed every four hours and the lost time and potential for scrap was becoming expensive.

‘We looked at everything to solve the problems – new inserts and machine alignments – ignoring the oil completely, despite being told by Jemtech’s Mark Drummond that it was at the heart of the problem.

‘That was until the fire,’ added Osman.

The fire gave Roscomac the incentive to switch cutting fluids to Blasomill 22, which has a much higher flash point than what the company had previously used.

Jemtech’s technicians drained the coolant tank, cleaned it and refilled it with Blasomill 22 in less than two hours.

As a result, tool life has now been increased to 3,000 parts per insert and insert changes occur every 40 hours rather than every four.

The consistency of size on the threaded element of the part was also improved, resulting in a requirement to check only one in 250 parts, freeing up operator time for other jobs.

Beyond the savings that are being made on the sliding-head machines in terms of process security, product consistency and a reduction in the amount of cutting oil that is being ordered thanks to Blasomill 22’s longevity, Roscomac is also benefiting further down the line as the improved surface quality of the machined parts now requires less polishing, generating even greater cost savings.

Other benefits from switching to Blasomill 22 include the oil’s chlorine-free status, which ensures no corrosion on the machine or parts from its use.

The inclusion of anti-wear and extreme pressure additives, along with its excellent lubricating properties, delivers extended tool life and good surface quality.

With a flash point of 180C, the likelihood of another fire has been extremely reduced.

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