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Lubrication – when is anti-seize the best choice?

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The typical function of a lubricant is to protect against friction and wear but it can also be used to inhibit corrosion by displacing moisture and leaving a continuous coating on the part. When choosing a lubricant, it is important to consider the intended application as well as the environmental conditions to which the assembly will be exposed. Indeed, environmental conditions are critical to the successful selection of the right lubricant product. Factors including high temperatures, harsh chemicals and contaminants may have an adverse effect on the expected lubricant performance.

Lubrication – when is anti-seize the best choice?Generally, oils and greases are the best choice when the speed of movement is medium to high, the operating temperature is below 250degC and the load is classified as low to medium. Anti-seizes come into their own in harsh environments and operating conditions, and are particularly suited to extreme temperatures and applications exposed to chemical attack. These are premium-quality products developed to protect metal parts from corrosion, galling and seizing. And due to their special composition they are suited to static and boundary friction conditions generated by a combination of low speed and high pressure.

Traditionally anti-seizes have used metal fillers to provide lubrication when operating temperatures are high. These fillers can, however, have a detrimental effect on metals such as stainless steel and titanium, increasing the potential for stress cracking.

Henkel entered the anti-seize market when it bought the company that developed the first copper-based product which, at the time, was considered to be the gold standard of anti-seize formulation. It still manufactures anti-seize products that use copper or aluminium to provide lubrication at extreme temperatures but, thanks to continuous development of this technology, the scope of anti-seize is now even greater.

Products are now available that are suitable for universal use, in effect one product for the majority of plant maintenance applications. And the formulation development has also been complemented by advances in how the products are packaged to make their application easy and effective.

The overall benefits of the anti-seize range include ease of assembly and disassembly, equipment protection in extreme temperature conditions, corrosion protection of mated metal parts, extended lifetime of expensive fittings and reduced downtime due to seizure. There are also formulations that adhere to standards for specific industries such as PMUC approval for use in nuclear power plants and a marine-grade version with American Bureau of Shipping certification that confirms its resistance to salt water. Another is suitable for use in food processing, made possible by Henkel’s non-metal anti-seize developments that allow its use with stainless steel.

LOCTITE 8009 for heavy duty applications is a good example of this new breed of the metal-free anti-seizes now available. It replaces metal fillers with those that are mineral based. As a result, it can be used on all metals and is also able to withstand temperatures up to 1315degC, providing maintenance engineers with a high-performance anti-seize for all applications. It lubricates the surface, protects against corrosion and also resists high pressure.

It has become a popular toolbox product because it is universal in its application and also very easy to apply. Generally anti-seizes are supplied in cans or as aerosols but LOCTITE 8009 was one of the first to be available in a screw-capped can with integral brush to allow precise application. And now Henkel has also introduced LOCTITE 8009 in a brush-top tube too, which ensures a cleaner application and waste reduction.

More information about anti-seizes can be found at www.henkel.com.

 
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