Safety on the Plant Floor

January 6, 2017 Off By Louise B. Delia

Anytime a worker is using a grinding, cutting or milling machine the parts of the machine gets hot, especially the parts of the machine that are the friction points between the steel or metal that is being worked on and the drills or cutting part of the milling machine. The friction is one of the causes of heat. How many have seen dragsters racing? At the beginning of the race, the dragsters wait idly until the green light goes on and within milliseconds the wheels start spinning and smoke starts accumulating under the tires because of the amount of excess energy built between the revolutions of the tire to the pavement.

Workshop Heat

Heat is generated causing smoke. The same cause is at work between sticks rubbed together to create fire for a campfire. When steel fabricators use milling machines to make the parts they need for their job the milling machine generates heat, especially the drill or cutting edges. If the miller doesn’t want the two pieces to weld together because of the heat he must apply some form of liquid between the milling machine and the parts being worked on and this will cool the working space. The liquid used is called  milling machine coolant.

Cutting fluids or coolant comes in many forms such as gels, oil-water, or gases. The material and chemical compositions of these kinds of coolants are various. Sometimes the coolant is made from petroleum by products, oil animal fats, or water injected liquids. Coolants of this kind are needed both for manual milling as well as laser type milling, where the machine doing the cutting is a laser arc.

The Effects of Fluids

When a fluid is applied in this way to the milling work the fluid cools the touch points as well as the proximate spaces between the heated points of the milling process, thereby making the work environment much more safe for the worker as well as the general environment of the fabricating environment. In other words, the coolants prevent hazardous accidents from occurring.


A milling machine worker in an industrial workplace will want to have a coolant that performs several key functions. First, the best coolant will keep the temperature stable, not too hot and not too cool. The second characteristic of a good milling coolant is that it will keep the cutting edges of the work environment as well as the milling machine optimally efficient for its maximum lifespan, thereby keeping the costs of the milling to a minimum. Lastly, the coolant will be free from elements that will cause explosions or fires during the milling process.

Advantages of liquids

The liquid coolant has many advantages, but one of the most significant is that the milling process doesn’t have to stop in order to keep the friction points cool, but can continue to work thru the milling process until the work being done is complete without fear of fire or explosions. This is important since the coolant keeps the surface of the work, as well as the general proximity of the workspace and surfaces.