Coolant Reclamation

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June 10, 2020

Coolant Reclamation

In today’s ultra competitive environment modern CNC shops have to utilize every technique possible to maintain profitability and still be competitive. Additionally another area of major concern for all businesses is the environmental impact a company makes. As more focus is put on the environment, rightly so, companies are always looking for ways to improve the bottom line while at the same time being mindful stewards of the environment.

Throughout most CNC company’s evolution and growth the main driver of improvement has been driven by improved technology. Additionally, when competing against low cost countries technology becomes even more important to maximize labor utilization and protect the jobs of the employees the company has on site.

With that in mind when Fermer Precision wanted to take the step of reclaiming and renewing cutting fluids or coolants we knew the equipment had to be sophisticated yet simple to operate. The system we purchased had the following attributes:

  • Dual compartment processing tank for the storage of dirty coolant and a constant supply of immediately available clean recycled coolant
  • Our patented floating pivot‐arm skimmer for the most efficient skimming of the floating tramp oils
  • Our patented oil separator for the most efficient separation of non‐emulsified oils from your valuable water soluble coolant solution
  • Various filters for the removal of particulates from the dirty coolant; filtration includes reusable filters for larger particulates and magnetic separators for ferrous finest
  • Ozone generation via a corona discharge technology and micro‐bubbles dispersion stones for the most efficient removal of bacteria activity
  • Air operated diaphragm pumps that provide for ease of maintenance and minimal air consumption
  • The unit had to be affordable and require little or no significant maintenance.

Fermer actually purchased two units to reclaim cutting fluids for each building at our site. The units are connected to a central distribution system in each building and have been continuously operating for over three years. The systems are ingeniously simple. They rely on tried and true technologies which make them reliable and robust. We have enjoyed a plethora of savings both readily visible and some not apparent but true savings none the less.

Another area the system truly helps with is respect to peace of mind. Any company in the US must be cognizant and focused on environmental issues. However, regardless of the effort put forth in area there is still concern of having an issue. In today’s litigious society there is always the possibility of coming under scrutiny with respect to actions that could possibly hurt the environment. If you’re reclaiming the gutting fluids and cleaners you use you significantly reduce that concern of managing waste fluids.

The tangible savings again were very apparent. The list below is easily apparent savings that we are enjoying every day. We are not at the point we couldn’t imagine using cutting fluids without a reclamation system available.

Fluid Purchase Cost Savings
  • Fermer had reduced new fluid purchase costs by 72 percent on an annual basis
  • We have mitigated the impact of continually rising coolant and cleaner prices
  • Because our system coolant is controlled at a higher level than previous we purchase far less concentrate and truly extend the life of coolant and cutters.
Disposal Cost Savings
  • Fermer has reduced fluid disposal costs by 83 percent
  • We have effectively mitigated the impact of increasing disposal costs
Extended Tool Life
  • Because we are able to manage the entire coolant system from concentrate to reclamation we are able to control concentration and coolant life. We have seen increases in tool life of up to 110 percent
  • We have significantly reduced the amount of tramp oil we allow in our coolant. The reduction of tramp oil at high levels has improved tool life as well.
Labor Cost Savings and Increased Uptime
  • Increase parts washer bath life (by 2 to 10 times) and reduce time spent "pumping and dumping" washers
  • Reduce time required to clean out a machine tool sump from several hours to 15 to 20 minutes
  • Increase tool life and time between wheel dressing
  • Reduce time required to clean critical servo valves, coolant and cleaner nozzles
  • Reduce overall coolant maintenance cost

The days of coming to work on a Monday after a hot weekend and smelling coolant gone bad is a thing of the past. Since the coolant is cleaned and controlled outside contaminants that would historically “kill” the coolant or would allow bacteria to grow. This makes for a much more hygienic and pleasant work environment.

In summary coolant reclamation works. It allows CNC shops to control what wasn’t able to be controlled. Shops can save significant dollars with little capital investment relatively speaking. The use of this technology represents just another way Fermer is embracing technology and continuing to grow and evolve as a whole. If you have parts needs give Fermer a try. You will see how technology and inovation coupled with a strong work ethic and exceptional know how make Fermer elite in a time when good enough is not good enough. We look forward to helping you.

Fermer Precision Casting Machining Specialist