SISU CHEMICAL has developed Scibond SL-23, a non-hazardous and environmentally friendly acrylic-based emulsion polymer that is proving to be a vast improvement to the current system of using zinc phosphate and reactive soap lubricant.
"We have developed the holy grail of cold forging and it’s Scibond SL-23," according to David Stark, CEO and president.
Sisu Chemical develops and supplies acrylic-based emulsion polymers and other chemical products.
"Not only does it improve tube and wire drawing performance compared to other systems, which saves money, but there's no hazardous waste material left over,” Stark continued. “We have, in fact, solved a major problem for most cold forging manufacturers."
One manufacturer estimated that using the SL-23 product over a three-year period, they would realize an average savings of $1 million a year.
"The product is more expensive than soap, but using polymer has extended the tools life up to 30%, which is saving us a lot of money in the long run,” according to another. “In addition the polymer is compatible with the cold heading oil, extending the use. The polymer does not require a thick phosphate layer, which minimizes the consumption and significantly reduces the sludge formation. These all result in a significant cost reduction. ”
The product development was funded by a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant Stark received in 2004. As part of an STTR, NC State University's Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering provided the initial evaluations of the polymers developed by Sisu. He also received a Phase II and Phase IIB from the NSF based on the reduction of the concept to practice and subsequent product sales. The result is a superior lubricant that minimizes chatter, streaks or scratching.
"There's another advantage to our product," Stark said, "and that is ‘no dust.’ Our product creates a cleaner work place over what's currently being used."
Stark said that Scibond SL-23 also provides a surface that is comparable to tubes drawn with halogenated oil. Applications that require a smoother interior diameter are drawn with oil. By using the Scibond SL-23, the resulting surface is just as smooth, and another hazardous waste stream is eliminated thus resulting in another significant cost savings. The costs associated with hazardous waste disposal have been steadily increasing, and is expected to continue at an accelerated rate.
Scibond SL-23 is available in the U.S. and Europe. Stark says the chemical is supplied in one metric ton totes.