A metalworking fluid manufacturer interested in (or using) MQL—isn't that a contradiction?
For Blaser Swisslube, metalworking fluid and minimum quantity lubrication go hand in hand. What may sound a little strange to some, is normal for the Swiss family business. "We are committed to providing our customers with measurable added value in the field of cutting and grinding fluid and lubricant solutions. Whether it’s with a suitable cutting and grinding fluid or with a minimum quantity lubricant matched to the process," explains Marc Blaser, CEO of Blaser Swisslube. In order to expand expertise in the field of MQL, a GROB G550 machine was purchased this year, which was specifically modified for MQL production. "We are looking to develop steadily, and better understand the fields of activity in MQL. To this end, we work closely with partners," he concludes.
Competence in minimum quantity lubrication
When using MQL, the entire process has to be taken into consideration. Significant progress has been made in the field of MQL over recent years, which also presents metalworking fluid manufacturers with the challenge of developing products specially suited for this purpose. Given the appropriate machining processes and the right implementation, Blaser Swisslube sees huge potential in MQL. Conversion to MQL requires adaptation of tools and process parameters. However, many users lack experience with MQL processes, which can be compensated for by the involvement of experts and the knowledge of tool, equipment and metalworking fluid suppliers. With the machine converted to MQL, Blaser Swisslube can compare applications and materials with MQL, cutting and grinding oils and water-miscible coolants, and build up practical process knowledge. We want to provide answers to our customers' questions – including in the field of MQL," says Tobias Mathys, Process Engineering Manager at Blaser Swisslube.
Process development with EMUGE
A project with EMUGE started in early 2019. The aim of the research was to gain knowledge in the field of thread forming in steel alloys in terms of the cutting forces in correlation with the MQL product used. For this purpose, threads were formed with a tool from EMUGE, often found in the aerospace and automotive industries.