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Machine shop addresses coolant quality

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article image The Zebra Belt Skimmer is fitted to the coolant reservoir of the new Mori Seiki NL25000 CNC lathe at Hotham Engineering.

AN increasing number of small to medium sized machine shops are expressing concern about maintaining coolant quality to ensure they obtain optimum machining results and addressing the environmental issues associated with the disposal of waste coolant materials, according to Dimac Tooling .

When Sydney based Hotham Engineering installed a new Mori Seiki NL25000 CNC lathe recently, managing director David Clapham was keen to ensure that the installation included the latest in 'clean coolant' technology.

A Zebra Disk Skimmer supplied by Dimac Tooling was recommended by the machine tool supplier and was installed. He has been quickly impressed by the results.

"Like many small machining shops we tended to hold out until the Christmas holiday shutdown before we considered disposal of used coolant materials that traditionally went to a waste disposal facility,” said Mr Clapham.

"Our swarf went to landfill via Cleanaway, but we now recycle due to the convenience of the chip conveyor on the new machine that is allowing us to separate the various materials, which are bought by a local scrap metal company.

"Our local Council also advised us and other similar businesses that they were concerned at how the machining industry was addressing its coolant disposal problem.

"About four years ago we changed over to synthetic coolants and while we are impressed by their improved machining performance, we recognised that managing and maintaining their condition would be important.”

Mr Clapham said the Zebra Disk Skimmer they installed on their new Mori Seiki machine has made a noticeable difference to the condition of the coolant, by removing tramp oil and some swarf material.

"In fact we are so impressed that we have just placed an order for a second Zebra Skimmer from Dimac Tooling,” he said.

"We intend to set this up as a portable unit, which we will rotate around the other machine tools in our shop. We now expect to double the life of the coolant.”

Dimac Tooling offers a range of Zebra disk, belt and tube skimmers in an extensive choice of sizes, with a range of installation options and accessories. These products enable even the most complex machining and machine tool installations to be equipped with a solution that will maintain coolant quality and assist in reducing the environmental and disposal costs associated with spent coolant.

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