1. #1
    I have a flood cooling system for my lathe and I was looking at various water free alternatives. There seems to be no thread about using cooking oil on this forum. I looked on another, but there were only stupid comments.
    .
    Rapeseed oil (Canola) is cheap, has a high flashpoint and seems to be OK. Vegetable oil based miscible coolants are on the market anyway.
    .
    Anybody got any useful info on this topic.
    .
    If you want to do the jokes, look on that other forum, they are all there.

    Cheers folks !

    Rob

  2. #2
    m_c's Avatar
    Lives in East Lothian, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 3 Hours Ago Has been a member for 9-10 years. Has a total post count of 1,833. Received thanks 192 times, giving thanks to others 5 times.
    Why do you want to go water free?
    Unless your lathe specifies pure oil, or you're machining something where pure oil is a better option (not likely given you're trying to do this on the cheap!), then there's no real reason not to run soluble coolant.

    It's worth mentioning, the vegetable based oils will still have additives to improve extreme pressure properties, and also to inihibit unwanted things growing/living in it.
    Avoiding the rubbish customer service from AluminiumWarehouse since July '13.

  3. #3
    I have just spent nearly 3k on a new lathe. The old one had a sudsoil system and I still have 2l of the undiluted stuff left. It stained the bed of the little bugger and the stuff turned green when I was machining brass (a lovely pale sage green). So I am a bit wary of water on machinery. I am using some surplus engine oil diluted with paraffin at the moment in a hand sprayer. This seems to have a good cooling effect but I don't like the idea of flood cooling with it. My reservoir tank takes about 10litres, so that is under 20 in budget engine oil terms and 8 for veg oil.

    Vegetable oil (especially rapeseed) is 8 for 2x5l at ASDA and has several advantages :-

    • It is cheap
    • It has a high flashpoint and autoignition temperature
    • It has good lubrication properties
    • It is non-corrosive
    • It is not carcinogenic
    • It won't stain the machine
    • You can buy it at most supermarkets
    • It doesn't smell that much
    • You can recycle it for bio-diesel
    • And it's cheap.



    So why does it not seem to be being used. Is the thermal transfer not good ?

    Last edited by cropwell; 11-05-2014 at 09:36 PM.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by cropwell View Post
    So why does it not seem to be being used. Is the thermal transfer not good ?
    Yep - just compare the specific heat capacity of water and your favorite oil. Oil does 'lubricate' better (i.e. lowers the co-efficient of friction between the tool and material more), so less heat is generated in the first place compared to with water, but I think that effect is only dominant for materials that are very hard to cut - i.e. the ones where people recommend using neat oil.
    Old router build log here. New router build log here. Lathe build log here.
    Electric motorbike project here.

  5. #5
    m_c's Avatar
    Lives in East Lothian, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 3 Hours Ago Has been a member for 9-10 years. Has a total post count of 1,833. Received thanks 192 times, giving thanks to others 5 times.
    I've always used soluble oil, and never had any issues with staining, however I am aware there are some that are notorius for causing residue build up.
    One big thing to be aware of is soluble oils can be pretty specific for their applications, and I'm guessing that whatever you have isn't suited for brass (some suppliers classify it as yellow metal).

    I'm currently running Gulf Cascade HD-S, as it's capable of handling most metals and processes, however the smallest quantity it's available in is 20 litres. The choice for cutting oils in small quantities is very limited, so you either have to run whatever you can find and hope it works, or buy more than you're ever likely to use.
    Avoiding the rubbish customer service from AluminiumWarehouse since July '13.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by m_c View Post
    I've always used soluble oil, and never had any issues with staining, however I am aware there are some that are notorius for causing residue build up.
    One big thing to be aware of is soluble oils can be pretty specific for their applications, and I'm guessing that whatever you have isn't suited for brass (some suppliers classify it as yellow metal).
    +1

    I use Castrol Cooledge BI, mainly because I got most of a 20L container cheaply. I've not needed to use it on brass, but it says it's suitable in the datasheet.
    Last edited by Jonathan; 11-05-2014 at 11:36 PM.
    Old router build log here. New router build log here. Lathe build log here.
    Electric motorbike project here.

  7. #7
    Hi,

    rapeseed oil works well if applied directly to the workpiece and removed afterwards. I've used it a few times for cutting stainless steel.
    But: I would never put it into a machines coolant system. Fist: it is quite thick - but most important: it will rot and become a total mess after a few months.

    Christian
    2D / 3D CAM Software and CNC controller: http://www.estlcam.com

  8. #8
    Yes - I found that out the hard way, fortunately I drained it out before it set.

  9. #9
    It's not the oil I've fancied,
    Because the bas$*rd goes all rancid.

    (you didn't know I was a poet ! )
    Last edited by EddyCurrent; 10-09-2014 at 12:14 PM.
    Spelling mistakes are not intentional, I only seem to see them some time after I've posted

  10. #10
    Not that bad an idea Rob really....BUT...you can see the advantages...now look at the disadvantages..

    The viscosity is a little on the heavy side...your pump will be straining a bit


    What a reet mess you will be in.... it'll be all up the walls.... all over you....all over the floor...the dog'll walk in it..tread it into the house...jump on the bed.....

    What about the smell? AND don't say you can bath him!!

    I feel a divorce coming on!!

    Do YOU know of any engineering companies that use it? 45 years in the Oil Business and I don't .

    It has been done though I do know


    As a lubricant...it's fat...so got to be ok..... but get it hot and you will be coat everything with gummy "Chip Fat"... smells ok though.

    Use the proper gear..see my article today on Coolants

    R

    IF you really do want to go down the neat oil avenue...I'll be glad to advise...but..... be it on your head

    ps I've just save you have HALF you own :-)

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