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How to Use Cutting Oil for Cutting Metal



A viewer asked Kevin to do a video about cutting oil. He's going to compare 4 kinds of oil. Kevin has just been experimenting with different lubricants over the years.

The first is in a well-used spray can - it's the one he uses the most. Made by CRC Cutting Oil, it's in a pressurized can, so you can just squirt it where you need it. The cutting oil foams up, which helps it stick and fill the volume where you're cutting. Kevin has had a lot of good luck with it.

The next oil is also from CRC. It's TrueTap Aqua Cutting Fluid, which is water soluble as opposed to the other, foaming type, for which you pretty well need break cleaner to get it off. This is a lot more liquidy.

Kevin takes a moment to explain that he is not being paid to mention these products. They are just solutions he has used before and something new that he just picked up to do this free how-to video.

Next Kevin shows some leftover fork oil he had from working on a motorcycle that he has used before as a cutting fluid.

He explains that cutting fluid helps keep the tool cooler and helps reduce some friction which helps it cut at the same time. It also helps keep the tool from wearing out from heat and getting dull, so you can cut better with it.

Next Kevin shows some 20 / 50 motor oil. He keeps it in a "squirt gun" for oiling the lathe and the mill. It's much, much thicker. Kevin has a piece of cold rolled 1/2" plate steel clamped down on his drill press table. On it is a brand new 1" hole saw without the guide drill in it.

He first drills with the 20 / 50 motor oil using a medium pressure on the handle. He's not trying to force it. When he pushes too hard it smokes. He stops the drill for a moment to add another dab of motor oil in the cut groove. When Kevin finishes drilling the hole he says, "It actually provides too much lubricant. Well it's motor oil. That's its job!"

Next is the fork oil, the pretty green stuff. Kevin puts a little coating on the metal where he is going to cut. As he cuts there's a lot of smoke, but it sure seems to cut better. It also was a lot quicker.

Now it's time for the old cutting oil in the spray can. There's lots of smoke. Kevin adds a little more oil as he cuts.

Finally he's ready to try the new cutting fluid. Even though the hole saw has been used to cut the other three holes, it's still cutting nicely. He finally gets a little smoke from it, but there had been almost no smoke up until then. Kevin looks at the cut and says, "That's nice!"

Next Kevin shows the results. The most dramatic results were on the back side of the metal. In the cuts where he used the motor oil and fork oil some of the metal was basically forced through the hole to the other side.

Can you use just any oil? Kevin is not sure. He has used transmission fluid when he didn't have anything else available. He also has used WD 40 - "Smoky, smoky!" But it does work, according to Kevin.

He thinks it's all about testing, about finding what works the best for you, what you have on hand, what can get the job done. Kevin appreciates his viewers and asks the to "like" this free how to video if they enjoy it.

He's ready to go back to work, but you might want to stick around for another moment to see 1 kind of oil you definitely SHOULDN'T use ....


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