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July/August 2011

Vol. 109
No. 5

The Plating and Coating Industries’ Technology Magazine


Keep It Clean
A quality surface finish begins with a thorough parts
washing process.

Technically Speaking
FAQs About Ultrasonic Systems
Thermal Aging of Hard Gold Deposits

Cleaning Times
Aerosol-Dispensed Cleaners—Part III

Case Study
eOx Economic: A Greener,
Cleaning Chemistry
Plater's Profile:
Dixie Industrial Finishing
2011 Exhibiting & Visiting Details are now available @


%RRWK1Ri SF1A11-20 SF1E03-06 SF1B03-06 S


The 2011 NAI Coating Show gives
you what no other coating event can.


Technically Speaking
19 Thermal Aging of Technical Hard Gold

24 Key Guidelines Pertaining to Ultrasonic

Equipment and Performance

Business Spotlight
11 Short-Term U.S. Manufacturing Outlook

Plater’s Profile
14 Dixie Industrial Finishing Strives for
Operational Efficiency

Case Study
26 RPM Technology’s eOx Economic Cleaner
Works Wonders for Architectural Panel and
Aluminum Extrusion Finishing Operation
3 Tucker’s Take
The Good Doctor’s ‘Not-So-Good’ Economic Prognosis

28 Cleaning Times
Aerosol-Dispensed Cleaners and Cleaning, Part III

33 Adhesion & Bonding

The Evolution of Bio-Based Green Solvents

37 Guest Column—Robert Adams

Don’t Overestimate the China Threat

39 Quality Control—Leslie Flott

Who is Ultimately Responsible for Quality Control?

41 Sherwood on Management
To Be, Or Not to Be, In Business

4 News & Briefs
42 Product Showcase: Cleaning & Surface Prep
45 Finishers’ Directory: Architectural Specialists
46 Classifieds
47 Calendar of Events
48 Advertisers’ Index
metal finishing
July/August 2011
Volume 109 - Number 5

tuckerstake Publisher
Greg Valero

Reginald Tucker
The Good Doctor’s “Not-So-Good” re.tucker@elsevier.com
Publisher Emeritus
Economic Prognosis Eugene B. Nadel
Art Director - Production Manager
Susan Canalizo-Baruch

H unker down. We’re in for a long

period of stagnation. That was
the admonition of Dr. Ken Mayland,
luster employment numbers are
indicative of skittishness among
businesses. In truth, many compa-

Advertising Sales Managers

Midwest/West Coast
president of Pepper Pike, Ohio- nies have simply learned to do more Arnie Hoffman
based Clearview Economics, in his with less. “Employers say the cuts Ph: (847) 559-0909
closing keynote presentation deliv- they made at the height of the down- E-mail: arnie@edmancompany.com
ered at SUR/FIN 2011 in Rosemont, turn were just too painful,” Dr. Northeast/East Coast
Ill., back in June. In sharp contrast to Mayland surmised. “Companies are Dan Ramage
his more sanguine forecasts offered gun-shy about hiring due to the Ph: (847) 699-6899
at SUR/FIN 2009 swings from E-mail: danr@ix.netcom.com
and 2010, respective- 2008–09.”
ly, the renown busi- See “Business Spotlight” Dave Facinelli
ness economist in this issue for additional Stagnation in wage Ph: (727) 866-9647
sounded a more cau- perspectives. growth. Consumer E-mail: davefac@ix.netcom.com
tionary note regard- spending—about 70%
ing the state of the of GDP—got off to a Sales Operations Coordinator
recovery in general and, more specif- slow start in the second quarter, Eileen McNulty
ically, job creation in the United with the prospects for Q3 appearing e.mcnulty@elsevier.com
States. equally bleak. “It’s the worst con-
Following are a few “low-lights” sumer spending growth seen in 60 Marketing/Circulation Manager
Laure Ballu
from Dr. Mayland’s presentation: years,” Dr. Mayland said. “Stagnant L.ballu@elsevier.com
wages are having a direct impact on
Metal Finishing
Subpar employment growth. The consumer spending. At the same 360 Park Avenue South
U.S. economy generated only 54,000 time, inflation has gobbled up even New York, NY 10010-1710
jobs in May, with—for the first time nominal increases in wage growth.” (212) 633-3100
since the recovery began—manufac- FAX: (212) 462-1915
turing employment trending down- Housing: A drag on the economy. www.metalfinishing.com
ward (off by 5,000 during the With housing starts down year over Metal Finishing (ISSN 0026-0576) is published 10 times per
year in January/February, March, April/May, June,
month). May’s job report was down year in three out of four regions, July/August, September, October, November,
November/December, and December by Elsevier Inc., 360
dramatically from April, which units “under construction” off 0.9% Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10010. POSTMASTER:
showed payrolls increasing by in April, and lingering issues with Send all address changes to Metal Finishing P.O. Box 141,
Congress, NY 10920-0141. Metal Finishing is free to qualified
244,000. June’s numbers were even foreclosures, the lumbering housing metal finishers in North America. For others related to the
field the subscription rate per year, including a copy of the
worse, as the economy eked out a sector remains a major concern. “Metal Finishing Guidebook and Directory Issue” and the
“Organic Finishing Guidebook and Directory Issue” is:
mere 18,000 new positions. “I just don’t see the spark that’s 1-year subs for 2011
“We were cruising along, and then going to give the economy the boost USA $123.00
things started to slow down,” Dr. we need,” Dr. Mayland flatly told Canada/Mexico $173.00
Europe & Japan $252.00
Mayland said. “We have been pro- attendees. “The cyclical push from Rest of World $284.00
ducing private sector jobs for more inventory rebuilding has run its Metal Finishing Customer Service, P.O. Box 141, Congers, N.Y.
10920-0141. Toll free (U.S. only): (800) 765-7514. Outside
than a year—just not cyclically what course, the momentum of business the U.S. call (845) 267-3490, fax (845) 267-3478. E-mail:
we’re used to. At this juncture of the has changed, and we’re now entering Metal@Cambeywest.com. Periodicals postage paid at New
York, N.Y. and at additional mailing offices.
recovery, job growth should be in the the malaise.” Change of Address: Postmaster—send address changes
to Metal Finishing, P.O. Box 141, Congers, N.Y. 10920-0141.
vicinity of 400,000. We’re coming up No sugar on this one, folks. Toll-free (for U.S. customers) (800) 765-7514. Outside of the
way short.” U.S. call (845) 267-3490, fax: (845) 267-3478. E-mail:
Metal@Cambeywest.com, 45 days advance notice required.
Please include both new and old address.
Copyright by Elsevier, Inc. Permission for reprinting selected
Lack of overall confidence. The lack- portions will usually be granted on written application to the

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 3




APPOINTMENTS & PROMOTIONS create customer value. and CEO. He will replace Gerald
Metal Finishing magazine expands Prior to joining Enthone, Sep was Shankel, effective Oct. 1.
its “Ask the Expert” roster with the with Akzo Nobel, a worldwide “FMA has made terrific progress
addition of Bob Farrell, technical paints and specialty chemicals com- under Jerry’s leadership during the
director at Hubbard-Hall, Inc., pany, where he was responsible for past eight-and-a-half years,” said
based in Waterbury, Conn. Farrell is the direction of OEM automotive Thomas Nederpel, chair of the FMA
knowledgeable in a variety of areas approvals and related marketing board of directors. “He played a vital
related to parts cleaning, including programs. role in the development of the strate-
product development and technical Timms, meanwhile, will lead the gic plan that guides the association,
service in cleaners, mass finishing, Enthone Asia Performance Coatings and he as strengthened our gover-
metal coloring and corrosion marketing team in delivering indus- nance, our boards and staff commit-
inhibitors, with a particular focus on try-centric coating solutions. He ment to achieving FMA’s mission
the development of “greener” indus- comes to Enthone with more than 20 and goals.”
trial cleaner formulations. Submit years of surface finishing chemical Youdell has served as group pub-
your questions to Bob online at and equipment experience in both lisher of FMA’s publishing affiliate
www.metalfinishing.com. Asia and Europe. Prior to joining since early 2007. The organization
Enthone, he was the European busi- said this is the next step in a compre-
MacDermid is pleased to announce ness manager of Process Automation hensive planning process initiated
the promotion of Gary Sikora to NA International (PAL). more than a year ago by Shankel with
Product Manager, Anti-Corrosion Haskins, prior to re-joining the executive committee of the FMA
Coatings. Sikora has worked within Enthone, was the president of Isola, board to ensure a thoughtful, proac-
the metal finishing industry for 30 Asia Pacific. His career marks more tive leadership succession plan.
years, nine of which were with than two decades of electronics
MacDermid. For more information, industry expertise that has included a AWARDS & RECOGNITION
please visit www.macdermid.com. broad range of executive positions in PPG Industries recently presented
sales, marketing and general manage- Excellent Supplier Awards to eight of
Enthone recently announced several ment at Cookson Electronics’ Alpha, its partners in recognition of superi-
additions to its staff. Henri Sep has Enthone, and Polyclad businesses. or performance in 2009.
been appointed director of market- Haskins formerly worked with The winners were as follows:
ing, performance coatings–Europe; Polyclad Laminates from 1996 to
Jonathan Timms has been named 2006. In 2002, he was promoted to • Adecco USA Inc., (Melville, N.Y.), a
director of marketing, performance vice president and managing direc- supplier of temporary services to
coatings–Asia; and Robert Haskins tor, Polyclad Asia, which also includ- PPG’s automotive, architectural,
was appointed senior vice president ed the sales and service of Enthone automotive refinish and industrial
and regional managing director– PWB chemistry. During his tenure, coatings businesses in the United
Asia. annual sales increased more than 36 States.
Sep will lead the Enthone percent. In 2006, with the purchase
European marketing team in deliver- of Polyclad by Isola Group S.A.R.L, • Clariant S.A. (Sao Paulo, Brazil), a
ing industry-centric coating solu- Haskins became president of Isola producer of emulsion resin that
tions to OEMs, applicators and job Asia Pacific. A member of Enthone’s supplies products to PPG’s architec-
shops that approve, specify and use global executive management team, tural coatings business in South
Enthone wear-resistant, corrosion Haskins reports directly to Steven America.
protection, and decorative coatings Corbett, CEO of Cookson
for automotive, plumbing and build- Electronics. • Crown Coal & Coke Co.,
ing, industrial equipment, energy, (Pittsburgh, Pa.), which provides
jewelry, fashion, and general surface The Fabricators & Manufacturers coal to PPG’s chlor-alkali and deriv-
finishing applications. Working with Association, Intl. (FMA) has atives facility in Natrium, W.Va.
Enthone industry and product man- appointed Edward Youdell, group
agement, he will partner with the publisher of FMA • Fort Dearborn Co., (Fountain Inn,
company’s sales and R&D teams to Communications, Inc., as president S.C.), which provides product labels

4 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

briefs • Seppic Polychem Business,
Europe, a Paris-based provider of
services for the electronics manufac-
turing industry, was awarded “Best
polyols to PPG’s automotive and of Conference” for his presentation,
industrial coatings businesses in “Fluid Flow Mechanics: Key to Low
and related services to PPG’s archi- Europe. Standoff Cleaning” at the SMTA’s
tectural coatings business in North SE Asia Technical Conference held in
America. Steve Lampe, PPG vice president, Penang, Malaysia, May 19–20.
purchasing and distribution, praised This is the second industry recog-
• WW Grainger, (Lake Forest, Ill.), the performance of the award-win- nition ZESTRON has received with-
industrial and safety suppliers to ning suppliers. “Their products, serv- in a few weeks. At the end of May,
PPG’s North American automotive, ices, innovation and overall commer- ZESTRON North Asia’s Process
architectural, automotive refinish cial value in 2009 were outstanding,” Engineer Jerry Ji was awarded the
and industrial coatings businesses he said. “We consider them invalu- “Best Paper of Technology
as well as its chlor-alkali and deriva- able business partners who provide a Conference One (CE11)” for his pres-
tives business. significant competitive advantage to entation of the technical study titled
PPG.” “pH-Neutral vs. Alkaline Cleaning
• Industrial Distribution Group Award criteria included product Agents” at the SMTA China East
(Belmont, N.C.), which provides quality, delivery, documentation, Technical Conference during NEP-
industrial supplies and integrated innovation, responsiveness, continu- CON Shanghai.
supply services to PPG’s aerospace ous improvement and participation “This second industry award
and fiber glass businesses in the in PPG’s Supplier Added Value demonstrates that ZESTRON’s in-
United States. Effort ($AVE) program. depth focus on research and develop-
For more information, please visit ment meets current industry
• Pacific Industrial Contractors, www.ppg.com. demands,” said Dr. Harald Wack,
Inc. (Fresno, Calif.), an on-site con- president of ZESTRON worldwide.
tractor services provider to PPG’s Umut Tosun, application technolo- “As an R&D driven company, we plan
performance glazings facility in gy manager at ZESTRON, provider of to further expand our research in
Fresno. high precision cleaning products and cleaning technologies to ensure that

Throughout The Supply Chain t"EWBODFE3% QSPEVDUJOOPWBUJPOT


For more information, contact us at:

MacDermid, Inc.
245 Freight St., Waterbury, CT 06702
203.575.5719 | www.MacDermid.com


www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 5

briefs the “Top 10 Most Influential People”
in the industrial coatings industry.
Several individuals representing vari-
“We are grateful to our customers ous sectors of the surface finishing
who supported our nomination,” industry were honored for their con-
our customers always remain one said Gordon Tindle, vice president, tributions during a special ceremony
step ahead of their most intricate Enthone Asia Performance Coatings. at SUR/FIN 2011 in Rosemont, Ill..
cleaning challenges.” “This recognition demonstrates and The award recipients were as fol-
For more information, visit reinforces our commitment to creat- lows:
www.zestron.com. ing customer value by providing
applications expertise and technolo- Silvio Taormina Award
Enthone, a business of Cookson gy that meet and exceed industry John Lindstedt, Artistic Plating
Electronics, was the recipient of two requirements.” Company, Inc.
“Top Ten” awards at the 5th Annual Tsang, who was previously a
China Enterprises Awards organized Cookson Electronics President’s Presidential Award
Awards recipient for her customer Steve Smith, Process Technology
focus, operational excellence, and
technical knowledge, called being August P. Munning Award
acknowledged by Enthone’s cus- Michael Siegmund, MacDermid,
tomers and industry peers both an Inc.
honor and humbling. “It is a truly a
milestone and highlight of my career Scientific Achievement Award
which I will always cherish,” she said. Patrick Benaben, Ecole Nationale
HC360.com is one of the leading, Superieure des Mines de Saint-
Amy Tsang, Enthone Asia Technical Director– business-to-business electronics Etienne
Performance Coatings, was recently recognized commerce services in the People’s
as one of the “Top 10 Most Influential People”
in the industrial coatings industry by
Republic of China. It launched the Award of Special Recognition
HC360.com. Top 10 Enterprises Awards in 2008, a Cheryl Clark, NASF Director of
program that aims to reward the Events
by HC360.com. Specifically, Enthone people and companies that have
was recognized as a “Top 10 made significant contribution to Awards of Merit
International Electroplating Brand,” Chinese industrial development and Waasy Boddison, American Plating
and Amy Tsang, Enthone Asia have demonstrated outstanding Power, LLC
Technical Director–Performance brand influence. Nicholas Corriere, Hawkins
Coatings, was recognized as one of Surface Finishing Group
Patrick Gleason, Microfinish IPC,
James Lindsay, Editor, Plating &
Surface Finishing
Keith Legg, Rowan Technology
Dan Meyers, Master Finish
David Norwine, Norwine

Also at SUR/FIN, Enthone

announced the winner of a tablet
computer at its booth on the show
floor. The winner—Hanie Miri, vice
president of engineering, Precision
Plating Company—was drawn from
those who participated in an enGage
process monitoring and quality
assurance demonstration held at the
Enthone exhibit. enGage offers users
24/7 total process monitoring and
automatic quality assurance. The
www.metalfinishing.com/advertisers result is consistency, reliability,

6 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

briefs Instruments GmbH. “It confirms
our belief that SPECTRO MS repre-
Manufacturing Chemists
Industry Specialists
sents a breakthrough that changes
ICP mass spectrometry forever. Distributive Excellence
“With its ability to simultaneously
measure the complete elemental
spectrum, we believe the SPECTRO
MS will revolutionize the mass spec-
trometry market the same way the
introduction of optical emission
spectrometers did several years ago.”
For more information, e-mail spec-


MacDermid was recently approved
to the Ford WSS M21 P51 specifica-
tion (S-450) for its ZinKlad 1000
finishes. These high-performance
coatings are available through its
Linda Wing, Automotive Industry Manager,
Enthone, and Terry Copeland, Senior Vice
President, Americas, announce the lucky winner
of the enGage drawing at SUR/FIN 2011.

increased control, transparency and

improved quality control. Visit
www.enthone.com for more infor-
“It’s like the good
SPECTRO Analytical Instruments
was named among the winners of the MacDermid ZinKlad 1000 finish meets Ford’s old days again.
WSS M21 P51 specification.
49th Annual R&D 100 Awards by the We are saving 20 percent on
editors of R&D magazine, for the the cost of chemicals, using
development of array detection tech- global network of approved ZinKlad less and getting better results.”
nology for mass spectrometers along applicators, creating value through- Wayne Fish, Vice-President
with the technology’s co-develop- out the OEM supply chain. Southwest Plating, Inc.
ers—Pacific Northwest National For more information, call (203) Duncan, Oklahoma
Laboratory, the University of 575-5719.
Arizona, Indiana University and
iMAGERLABS. Miles Chemical, a full-line chemical
SPECTRO was cited for its role in services company with headquarters
the commercialization of the break- in Arleta, Calif., has obtained ISO
through technology with the intro- 9001:2008 certification for its
duction of the SPECTRO MS induc- Anaheim facility. The organization
tively coupled plasma (ICP) mass previously acquired ISO 14001:2004
spectrometer in March 2010. The and OHSAS 18001:2007 certifica-
instrument also was awarded a 2010 tions as well as the National
Silver Pittcon Editors’ Award for Best Association of Chemical
New Product at the 2010 Pittsburgh Distributor’s Responsible
Conference and a 2011 Annual Distribution Process (RDP) verifica- 800-456-1134
Conference of China Scientific tion, making it the only known www.HavilandUSA.com
Instruments (ACCSI) Award as one chemical distributor with all four
of the best new instruments of 2010. quality management standards in Southwest PlaPlating,
ting, Inc. made the sswitch
to Ha viland’’s Optima 200 HL Semi-Bright
Haviland’s Semi-
“We are extremely pleased to be place. Performa
and HP Performa P
HD Bright-Nickel Process
selected along with our co-develop- ISO 9001:2008 is the International story aatt
in 2010. See the rest of the story
ers for this prestigious award,” said Organization of Standardization’s www.havilandusa.com/m2m
Manfred Bergsch, managing direc- certification that verifies an organi-
tor, SPECTRO Analytical zation is utilizing an internationally www.metalfinishing.com/advertisers

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 7

(Editor’s note: The following e-mail is in response to Bert
Regulations, Unfair Competition: have created a life of their own and
have now grown beyond their initial-
A Double-Edged Sword ly needed protection of the people

recognized quality management sys- Sherwood’s column, “Environmental Regulations, Agencies R egulatory agencies are hurting
our country’s manufacturing
existence. The national and federal
11. Underground Storage Tanks
12. Dept. of Health
through controlling the environ-
ment. They are now preventing the
growth of the companies under their
regulatory umbrellas.

regulatory agencies—under the guise The list of agencies and sub-agen- The politicians. Pity the politician

Are Hurting U.S. Manufacturing,” from the January/February of preventing damage to the envi-
ronment—are promulgating and
cies could go on, but the aforemen-
tioned list more than proves the
who attempts to reduce the regula-
tory requirements for manufactur-

tem. ISO 14001:2004 is the certifica-

enforcing an overwhelming number point: Too many regulations and ing. He, or she, would be immediate-
of regulations that increase the cost too many agencies demanding ly branded by their opponents as
of producing products. Tragically, a reports. What’s more, much of it is anti-clean environment—not an easy
preponderance of these regulations unnecessary and redundant. obstacle to overcome in the political

2011 issue of Metal Finishing.) is unnecessary and expensive, and

reduces the ability of our producers
to compete against countries that
Further, compliance is both time
consuming and expensive. Finally, it
reduces the ability of our country to

What should be done about morato-

tion for Environmental

have minimal regulations. compete in the worldwide manufac- riums? All of the related agencies
In too many cases, the motivation turing competition. and their subordinate organizations
and justification for the regulations should be brought back to political
is to keep the regulator’s employees Trade associations. Instead of focus- ground zero by being forced to:
at work. Let’s name the regulatory ing on being more competitive in
agencies, reports, and rules in world manufacturing, too much 1) evaluate the necessity of exist-
California and United States: time and money is being spent on ing regulations from a functional

Management Systems, and OHSAS Stop Whining About Unfair Competition

1. Air Quality (Southern
California Air Management
2. Publicly Owned Treatment
compliance. Compare the U.S. effort
in this area to the miniscule amount
spent in China, India, and South
Lobbying government to reduce
the number of environmental regu-
standpoint. Any regulations and
administrative requirements that
are found to be unnecessary
should be eliminated.

2) halt any further introduction

18001 is the Occupational Health

3. Fire Dept. lations governing industry has of new regulations.
4. Water Board – Regional become a major part of trade associ-
Control ation work and, consequently, cost. Owner/managers. This group
5. Permit By Rule Comparatively very little time is should get technical assistance to
6. Storm Water Regional Control spent on being competitive with for- assist in challenging regulations
Board (SWRCB) eign companies by improving tech- that cannot be proven to damage
7. Cal/OSHA –Employee nology and efficiency. personnel, the public and/or the

and Safety Advisory Services’ authen-

Notification of Exposure and Using a sports analogy, we have environment. Laboratory and com-

I put this article away a few months ago because I did not Medical Records. Emission
Reports. Hazard
Communications Training.
8. Dept. of Toxic Substances and
Control. Closure Plans. Biannual
built a strong defense (against regu-
lations), but lack the offense (inno-
vation) needed to compete on a
worldwide scale. Once the world
leader in advanced technology and
puter extrapolation should not be
allowed to restrict appropriate man-
ufacturing procedures.

and Annual Reports. operating efficiency, we are falling When you are competing in horse

tication for Health and Safety want to send a nasty-gram that I would regret later. I 9. EPA – California Regional –
Form R
10. California Dept. of
Transportation-Reg. Form


Government agencies.
Environmental-related agencies
races and find that a horse that usu-
ally lags way behind has a new train-
er, enhanced food and help from
other trainers, and consequently, is

January/February 2011 I metalfinishing I 41

Management Systems. RDP verifica- pulled the column out today and find that it still concerns
tion signifies responsible distribu- me, so here comes the complaint:
tion practices.
How could you have run that idiotic “Sherwood on Management” column in the
Founded in 1996, Miles Chemical’s
January/February 2011 issue of Metal Finishing? Don’t you (and Mr. Sherwood) know
services include chemical distribu- that that kind of “wa-ah, wa-ah, the playing field isn’t level!” complaining went out
tion, environmental services, chemi- with Lee Iaccoca?
cal formulating/blending, third-
party warehousing/transportation, I deal with the environmental regulations that Mr. Sherwood whines about on behalf
technical support and laboratory of my employer. If reports and recordkeeping needed to comply with air and water
services. For more information about pollution regulations, RCRA hazardous waste rules, and any other program take 10
Miles Chemical, visit www.miles- hours a week, I would be surprised. The answer to global competition woes is not
chemical.com or call (818) 504-3355. stumbling back to the Stone Age with the opponents, but applying our technological
advantage to improve profitability within the constraints of what it takes to maintain
CMTC, a private, nonprofit corpo-
a sustainable environment and safer workplace. That is what the customers for our
ration helping Southern California advanced-technology products want.
manufacturers become more com-
petitive, assisted Miles Chemical Doug Logan
obtain all four certifications. For Rightway Fasteners, Inc.
more information about manufac-
turing certifications, please visit
www.cmtc.com. (IPA), methyl ethyl ketone (MEK), been specifically formulated as a
methyl propyl ketone (MPK), stod- tough, chip-resistant finish provid-
Petroferm, Inc. is pleased to dard solvent and other low flash ing excellent corrosion and UV pro-
announce that RE-ENTRY® Prepsolv, point, flammable and toxic solvents. tection without the need for a
a bio-based cleaning solvent, is It removes hard-to-clean soils such as primer. DuPont™ ABCITE® by
approved by Boeing Commercial in adhesive residues, buffing and pol- Thermoclad can be electrostatically
accordance to Boeing’s BAC 5750 ishing compounds, corrosion- applied or fluid bed dipped.
Solvent Cleaning Specification. inhibiting compounds (CICs), cos- ABCITE® is based on DuPont™
Formulated for manual or immer- moline, greases, hydraulic fluids, sili- Surlyn® resin, the same polymer
sion cleaning, RE-ENTRY Prepsolv is cones and waxes. used for the tough outer surface of
selected when a bio-based solvent For more information, e-mail aero- golf balls. A few end-use applications
with fast drying, excellent solvency space@petroferm.com. include park and playground equip-
and low surface residue is required. ment, fence panels, balustrades, rail-
It is also selected due to its low PARTNERSHIPS ings and light poles.
volatility or vapor pressure. This DuPont Powder Coatings, one of Thermoclad, a leading U.S. design-
helps control evaporation, which the world’s leading suppliers of tech- er and manufacturer of custom, envi-
minimizes solvent consumption and nologically sophisticated powder ronmentally friendly thermoplastic
reduces volatile organic compound coatings systems, has partnered with powder coatings, offers a full range
(VOC) emissions. Erie, Pa.–based Thermoclad of polymer systems to meet cus-
“Products like RE-ENTRY Prepsolv Company in an initiative designed tomer requirements for value and
are replacing traditional solvents, to support the delivery of top-per- performance in both fluidized bed
such as acetone, IPA and MEK, forming products, service and value and electrostatic spray applications.
because they perform as well and to its customers. The alliance will Custom color matching is
have lower environmental, health allow both companies to sell a new Thermoclad’s specialty.
and safety impact,” said Bill Breault, line of thermoplastic powder coat-
aerospace market manager at ings, DuPont™ ABCITE® by EXPANSIONS & NEW VENTURES
Petroferm. Thermoclad, to the U.S. and Nordson Corporation recently
RE-ENTRY Prepsolv is an alterna- Canadian finishing industries. announced the opening of a new
tive to acetone, isopropyl alcohol These thermoplastic powders have demo center in Dongguan, China,

8 metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

briefs to our long time existing facilities
in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou
place in the Southeast this fall. There
will be guest speakers from govern-
and Suzhou,” said Greg Wood, vice ment and industry on a variety of
president, Nordson Advanced topics. The informational brochure
that will further the company’s Technology Group, Asia. “Our busi- is available at www.nasf.org. For
ability to meet the needs of cus- ness serving customers in electron- more information, e-mail Kevin
tomers in its Advanced Technology ics and related technology end mar- Helton at crossair@bellsouth.net.
Systems operating segment. The kets in South China continues to
new center will initially be focused grow. The Dongguan center allows CALL FOR 2011 NAI COATING
on products and solutions provided us to be closer to these customers SHOW BOOTH DESCRIPTIONS!
by the Advanced Technology seg- and offer solutions to meet their In its September edition, Metal
ment’s market-leading Nordson dispensing, coating and testing Finishing magazine will feature a spe-
ASYMTEK, Nordson DAGE, and needs more rapidly.” cial NAI Coating Show Exhibitor
Nordson YESTECH brands. The For more information, please visit Preview! To be included in this
new facility will provide greater www.nordson.com. FREE new product section, NAI
access to equipment demonstra- Coating exhibitors should provide
tions, application engineering sup- ANNUAL PALMETTO CONFERENCE the following: 1) 50-75 word descrip-
port, training, sales, and service for DATE SET tion of what your company plans to
customers in South China’s The 3rd Annual Palmetto Technical showcase at the event; 2) High-reso-
expanding high-tech manufactur- Conference will be held October lution color photo depicting your
ing industry. 5–7, 2011 in Myrtle Beach, S.C. This products or services; and 3) Booth
“The new facility in Dongguan year’s theme is “Winning in an Ever- number and contact information
adds to the already high level of Changing World Economy.” Please send your materials via e-
support Nordson currently pro- Sponsored by the Palmetto branch of mail directly to Reginald Tucker, edi-
vides its customers throughout NASF/AESF Foundation, it is the tor, Metal Finishing, at re.tucker@else-
China, and is an ideal complement only technical conference taking vier.com. Deadline: Friday, Aug. 12.



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rate of inflation spikes there is an
almost instant consumer reaction,
when the inflation comes from hikes
in commodity prices,” Dr. Kuehl
said. Within days of the start of the
“Arab Spring,” the price per barrel of
Short-Term Manufacturing Outlook: oil had thrust ahead by almost $20,
and the price of gas jumped by $0.70,
Moderate Viewpoints Prevail he noted. “The consumer was fresh
off the memory of 2008 and
assumed that it was only going to get

T o hear some analysts tell it,

there’s not much upside on the
horizon for the U.S. economy—or, by
many analysts have forecast, he
believes the slowdown is only tempo-
rary and not the start of another
worse, and the talking heads rein-
forced that perception. The result
was a rapid withdrawal of consumer
extension, the manufacturing sector. breakdown in the economy. confidence, which took a big chunk
Among the challenges cited: high “Admittedly, some of this reaction out of overall demand.”
unemployment, stagnant wage is justifiable when one looks at the According to Kuehl, the price of oil
growth, lukewarm consumer confi- numbers released lately,” Dr. Kuehl may be heading down soon, with gas
dence, and an ailing housing sector explained. “The housing market is prices already easing a bit. More
(see “Editorial” in this issue). still skidding, the consumer has importantly, the inflation threat is
For others, however, the outlook retreated in the face of more infla- not yet manifesting itself in a way
isn’t as hopeless as many would have tion threats, and the jobless rate has that will shift consumer behavior
you believe. While those who view the worsened. The manufacturing sector permanently, he said. After all, only
glass as half full do acknowledge in particular seemed to lose its posi- the first of the three factors that
there are real concerns facing the tion as the engine of the recovery.” beget inflation (hikes in commodity
nation and the economy, they stress Dr. Kuehl asserts this downturn is prices, shifts in the wage structure,
the importance of keeping all that’s just a blip, citing several reasons why and an overall abundance of money
happened (and still happening) in the he believes it won’t last: in the system) has actually become a
proper perspective—particularly in The impact of inflation and com- factor. “In other words, the inflation
this fragile, post-recession economy. modity pricing. The unexpected pressure felt by the consumer is com-
ing from fuel and food, and there
may be some modest relief on the
way for both of these sectors,” Dr.
Kuehl stated. “If the consumer
thinks that the threat of much high-
er pricing is not so immediate, they
will likely relax and get back to their
old patterns.”

A quicker-than-anticipated “global
recovery” from the crisis in Japan.
While the flow of parts and supplies
from Japan was interrupted for
many weeks, Kuehl reports that
many Japanese companies that were
impacted are already starting to
recover. “Most of those parts will be
For much of 2010 and into early 2011, the manufacturing sector was one of the key drivers of job flowing soon, and by the end of the
creation. Since April, however, the momentum has stalled.
year there will be a return to some
semblance of normal,” Dr. Kuehl
On such observer is Dr. Chris surge in inflation that occurred at stated.
Kuehl, economic analyst for the the sart of the year does not repre-
Fabricators & Manufacturers sent “an increase in the all-important A return to pre-recession lending.
Association, International (FMA). core rate that motivates the Fed to Several conditions that led to the
Despite the impending “doom” make decisions, but when the real expansion of the recession—i.e.,

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 11

Industrial companies are confidently investing in their businesses—upgrading
facilities, buying technology, adding staff, etc.—as they seek to build upon a
tighter credit, aversion to capital period of sustained growth. These are the main findings of Thomas Industrial
investment—are fading, Dr. Kuehl Network’s newly released Industry Market Barometer (IMB), a survey of
noted. These improvements, he buyers and sellers of industrial products and services.
believes, will start to show up in the
months ahead. Nearly half (45%) of the companies that responded reported growth over the
“Observers are a little baffled that last six months of 2010, with 88% expressing confidence in their future
banks and corporations have more expansion. The survey reveals a set of specific strategies that fueled this
money on hand than they have had growth, from customer retention efforts to movement into new markets and
in years, but that cash is not going product development. Bolstered by the results of these strategies, respon-
anywhere,” Kuehl notes. “The banks dents—most of whom represent small and midsize businesses—are investing
are sitting on it, in part, to contend more in their companies and recruiting talent in anticipation of increased cus-
with the wave of rule changes that tomer demand.
stemmed from the Dodd Frank legis-
lation, and partly because they have “Industrial buyers and sellers are busy collaborating in a way that is feeding
returned to their old-school ways. and sustaining the sector’s growth, which bodes well for the overall econo-
Slowly but surely, the new system is my,” said Eileen Markowitz, president, Thomas Industrial Network. “Successful
getting in place, and banks are inter- companies are executing strategies that cultivate existing customer relation-
ested again in expanding their busi- ships and develop new business opportunities.”
ness through loans. Credit is still far
from loose, but it isn’t as tight as it Respondents’ priority initiatives so far this year demonstrate an expectation
has been.” of increased demand. Their top priorities include increasing production capaci-
At the same time, the business ty, adding new lines of products and services, upgrading facilities, and manag-
community is hoarding cash as well,
ing their costs. Their investments map to these strategies; for example, most
Dr. Kuehl notes, with companies
are spending on technology, such as software, for areas such as cost manage-
uncertain about what they can count
ment. To ratchet up production capacity or develop more products/services,
on from the banks and partly
they are investing in capital equipment.
because they are just more cautious.
“The need to spend that money is
The companies surveyed are also hiring in anticipation of growth. In fact, 37%
not pressing as yet, but if the compe-
of respondents expanded staff in the first half of 2011. The most common job
tition starts to move, or there
appears to be more demand, they will openings aligning with their priorities and, more importantly, included skilled
start to let loose that cash, and the trade workers (43%), line workers (36%), and engineering professionals (35%),
economy will be stimulated again.” in addition to customer service and sales/marketing staff.
As for the industrial sector, which
has been pulling the economy along “We’re excited to see continued growth and investments in the industrial sec-
on the strength of expanded exports, tor,” Markowitz said. “The information we’ve gathered from thousands of
Dr. Kuehl offers this assessment: “It businesses demonstrates that their strategies are paying off. These companies
is likely the export demand will provide affirmation of a winning formula for industry’s future success.”
return, although in fact it has not
declined all that much in the past To view and download the full results of the latest IMB Survey, please visit:
few months. The big drop has been http://www.thomasnet.com/pressroom/Industry_Market_Barometer0711.html
in inventory build, and until the con-
sumer gets more aggressive there will strong production base (historically in San Diego are seeing a modest
not be a drawdown sufficient to pro- speaking). Take Southern upturn this year, although not quite
vide much impetus for the manufac- California, for example. While the as good in the second quarter as the
turer. As in most other recoveries, the state of California as a whole has first quarter. due to normal “season-
consumer will hold the key.” had its fair share of difficulties al slowdowns.” Nash-Hoff highlight-
(11.8% unemployment, state budget ed several major (and minor) indus-
REGIONAL PULSE woes), some cities are in the midst try clusters, providing a snapshot of
While it’s tempting to paint the of a turnaround. how they are faring these days:
overall manufacturing economy Just ask manufacturing industry
with a broad brush, it’s important consultant Michelle Nash-Hoff, who Biotech/Biomedical. San Diego is
that we not overlook what’s going has a finger on the pulse of the home to more than 550 biomedical
on at the “micro” level, particularly Southern California market. She companies, and local universities
those regions of the country with a notes that the majority of companies and research institutions have spun

12 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

spotlight organizations within the maritime
sector continue to increase,” Nash-
State of San Diego has lost 90,000
manufacturing jobs in the last 10
Hoff said. years, adding that it will take years
off nearly 200 biotech firms. The The only minor industry that is still to recoup those positions. But from
state remains the player to watch in “in the tank,” she notes, is the off- her perch on the steering commit-
such fields as genomic medicine and road vehicle sector. This industry, tee of the San Diego Inventors
photosynthetic-algae technology, Nash-Hoff observes, has never really Forum, there is a bright spot. “The
which experts say could produce far recovered from the recession because good news is that the number of
more fuel than corn, soy or sugar- the primary customers for these vehi- start-up-technology-based compa-
cane can in the same space. San cles worked in the real estate and nies has greatly increased this year,”
Diego’s biotech cluster employs an building industry—markets that are she noted. “Each month the meet-
estimated 40,000 people with a $9.1 still “upside down.” ings are filled to capacity with
billion annual impact on the local Overall, Nash-Hoff reports the inventors and entrepreneurs.”

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www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 13

Operational Efficiency
Monitoring metrics in the pursuit of continuous
improvement is the model for success at
Dixie Industrial Finishing.
tweaked accord-
“If you can’t measure it, then you the plant is func- 4925 South Royal Atlanta Drive, Tucker, GA 30084
can’t manage it.” That’s the driving tioning at opti- Tel.: 800-893-6214 Atlanta Office
philosophy espoused by the folks at mum efficiency Tel: 706-342-2644 Madison Office
Dixie Industrial Finishing, the from a manufac- Fax: 770-939-8106
Tucker, Ga.–based surface finishing turing standpoint E-mail: inquiries@dixie-industrial.com
operation whose dedication to finish but also cost-effec- www.dixiefinishing.com
quality and technological innovation tively in terms of
is rivaled only by its relentless focus dollars allocated to Number of employees: 62
on operational management and materials, person- Businesses served: Aerospace, Agricultural, Automotive,
maximizing productivity. nel, handling, and Construction, Defense, Heavy Equipment, Electrical
Informally referred to by the more maintenance. Distribution, Fastener, Outdoor Power Equipment, Material
palatable acronym (“DIFCO”), the “We scrutinize Handling, Transportaion Equipment
51-year-old Dixie Industrial every aspect of
Finishing Company has a long- these machines,” Primary suppliers: Atotech, Heatbath, MacDermid,
standing reputation as one of the said Jim Jones, PAVCO
largest finishers in the Southeast DIFCO’s vice presi-
U.S. Specializing in zinc plating/elec- dent. This is made
tro-galvanizing, phosphate coating, possible, he says, via sophisticated cated software and measurements
and tin plating—among other software and programs employed in utilized, managers and supervisors
processes—DIFCO’s combination of generating the various metrics. can isolate a host of variables,
large part-size capacity tanks and (Visual Shop1 and other information including: chemical and anode
reliably automated computer con- processing systems together allow the usage per machine; direct labor
trols facilitates the production of data collection. Visual Shop pro- costs per machine cycle; mainte-
higher volumes in a shorter time vides primarily tracking information nance and technical services time
than “most metal finishing facilities related to customers’ parts, while allocation; water consumption by
in North America,” the company other systems generate additional specific piece of equipment; and
boasts. All this at competitive price operational and financial informa- electricity and gas costs per process
points not only regionally but glob- tion.) All of these systems together line. What’s more, DIFCO can run
ally as well. feed into a real-time, activity-based scenarios to see how a potential
But this is not a tale of grandeur cost accounting report system that new job might impact the bottom
and scale. (Although, at 175,000 compiles routine data on usage of line, changing variables such as
total sq. ft. DIFCO clearly holds its labor and raw materials in produc- price, volume, and which process
own.) Rather, it’s a study in the tion terms (per machine cycle, per line to utilize, etc. The various met-
uncompromising level of detailed amp hour, per sq. ft); generates daily rics can then be further represented
operational analysis that goes into production reports, i.e., surface area as a percentage of sales dollar.
virtually every aspect of Dixie’s busi- covered vs. lbs of parts finished; All this allows DIFCO—originally
ness. From incorporating just the tracks all inputs and outputs; and ISO-certified in 2002—to estimate
right mix of chemicals/additives in sends reports to key departments profitability, study performance and
the bath make-up, to the utilization and vendors. efficiencies, manage costs, and even
of water for rinsing vs. other appli- These seemingly endless reams of catch problems quickly. The minuti-
cations, to the impact of line speed, information routinely rolled out by ae of the reporting is a bit much to
etc., each and every activity, process, the systems DIFCO employs is sim- take in at first, but when you realize
system, and asset is measured and ply mind-blowing. Via the sophisti- the bottom-line impact on the busi-

Lawn mower parts, caster brackets, and electrical distribution components are just a few examples of the kinds of parts DIFCO can run through at high volumes.

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 15

High-quality, high-volume rack & barrel processing
A classic exam- (5 automatic lines; 4 manual process lines)
ple of the tangible Chromating of aluminum
results DIFCO Electro-galvanizing
achieves through Zinc and tin plating
its ongoing self- Manganese and zinc phosphate coating
examination is the Trivalent chromating of zinc (clear, yellow, black)
ongoing reduction Stainless steel passivation
in water usage. Large part size capacity tanks
Between 2007 and ISO 9001:2008 Certified
2008 DIFCO
DIFCO has the capability to mask parts for selec- reduced water consumption by 39%.
tive processing. Another eye-opening statistic: In programmable logic controls (PLC),
1998, the company used 36 million and laser positioning for hoist opera-
gallons of water in operating its tion. Boasting multiple process selec-
process lines for an average of 5 gal- tions, this line—which replaced two
lons of water per sales dollar; by older, less-flexible units—is capable
2010, consumption had been of churning out 6,000 lbs of product
reduced to 5.2 million gallons for an per hour.
average of 0.88 gallons of water per
sales dollar. Additional savings are 2009—Re-engineered plating racks
achieved by reusing water in non- on one process line (Rack #3) for
critical rinse applications. higher piece/part population, going
Again, according to Henderson, it from 60 sq. ft. of surface area to 105
all goes back to the core metrics. “We sq. ft. of surface area per cycle—a 75%
constantly monitor usage to make productivity gain.
sure we use just the right amount of
fresh vs. recycled water in our 2000–2004—Increased capacity on
processes,” he explained. “This its rod-plating line by 260%, allowing
DIFCO believes it’s very important to provide a allows you to minimize waste and DIFCO to be more competitive with
clean, safe work environment for its employees. lower costs.” And when you’re flush- imports and grow its market share.
ing through 150,000–200,000 gal-
lons per week across the operation, 2010—Re-engineered the racking
an adjustment here or there can system of the rod-plating line (Rack
make a big difference. #6) to increase productivity by 20%
DIFCO employs advanced technol- over and above the production
ogy and analytics to boost produc- increases that were implemented
tion efficiency in other areas of its between 2000–2004.
operation as well, namely its core For DIFCO, the achievements rep-
plating processes. This is due in large resent much more than a list of cele-
measure to the fact that the compa- bratory milestones. They reflect an
Using the right amount of fresh water vs. recy- ny’s in-house engineers design, fabri- operational mindset that puts the
cled water is critical to controlling consumption.
cate, and install their own lines. emphasis on consistently high
Among the production gains and acceptance rates. “Reject reduction +
ness, it all seems well worth the improvements accomplished as a cost reduction = efficiency,” declared
investment in time, resources, and consequence: Jones in one of his signature expres-
money. sions. The end result, he says, is a
“Tracking the measurables allows 2007—Modified load-unload area of reject rate of work (processed and
us to set goals and cascade them high production process (Rack #5) to shipped to the customer) totaling
down to all levels of the organiza- accommodate flexible racking sys- less than .001%.
tion,” said Chris Henderson, tem. The combination of redesigned
DIFCO’s information manager. “We fixtures and racking area more than LEAN AND GREEN
closely analyze operations, allocate doubled productivity. On its own, DIFCO’s efficient, activ-
labor, and structure shifts according- ity-based system serves a model oper-
ly. We’re always looking at the vari- 2007—Designed, constructed and ation for aligning costs with
ous facets of the operation and ask- installed an automated, high-volume resources and output. But at closer
ing the question, ‘Why?’ ” zinc barrel plating process line, with inspection, you’ll find that there’s

16 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

If there’s one thing Jim Jones is
perhaps more adamant about than
quality plating, it’s advocacy on
behalf of the surface finishing
Jones is a perennial fixture in
Washington, D.C., a function
of membership in a variety of
manufacturer-oriented groups. He
presently sits on the boards of the
NASF, the Precision Metalformers
Chris Henderson (left), Information manager, Crunching the numbers. “Tracking the measur-
and Jim Jones, vice president, review reports
Association, and the Georgia
ables allows us to set goals and cascade them
from one of Dixie Industrial Finishing’s rack down to all levels of the organization,” Association of Manufacturers. In
lines. Henderson says. 2002, Jones testified before the
House Small Business Committee,
also a symbiotic relationship Jones, ensures the water that leaves and in 2009 testified to the effect
between the company’s approach to its facilities is cleaner than what it the automotive industry had on
production and its overall environ- was when it entered the plant. other manufacturing sectors.
mental philosophy. The technologi- That “green” thought process Dixie Industrial Finishing has also
cal innovations DIFCO employs in applies to solid wastes, too. For hosted congressional tours of its
its plating and finishing methods are instance, DIFCO regularly recycles facility over the years, welcoming
the same advances utilized in facets cardboard, scrap steel, and contain- Congresswoman Denise Majette of
of the business pertaining specifical- ers such as totes and drums. the 4th District in Georgia. In
ly to environmental protection and Additionally, the company sends addition, DIFCO regularly partici-
resource conservation. solid by-product (sludge cake) to an pates in the NASF Annual
Case in point: During a severe off-site location for stabilization and Washington Forum in D.C. For its
drought situation back in 2007, the neutralization. Typically, Henderson advocacy efforts, DIFCO earned the
local governor’s office requested a notes, 70% of waste is reduced to 30% 2004 Pete Grey Award from the
“voluntary” 10% reduction in water waste after drying sludge. Georgia Industry Association.
use by commercial industries. After In recognition of DIFCO’s empha-
DIFCO reviewed its processes, it sis on green, the United States
enacted a water-reduction use pro- Environmental Protection Agency Jim Jones, DIFCO vice
gram that exceeded that amount by in 2003 identified the company as president, presents the
five-fold. This was accomplished in the model for an international trade 2004 NAM Voting
part by: using flow restrictors; pro- tour to America. As part of this Excellence Award to
Johnny Isakson (right),
gramming solenoids to open only event, DIFCO hosted a delegation former Representative
when the hoist on the equipment of Vietnamese government repre- (R—6th District). Sen.
was operating; regulating frequency sentatives studying the manage- Isakson’s NAM voting
of rinse tank dumps; and modifying ment of hazardous waste generated record was an exemplary
100% in the 110th
plumbing infrastructure. Several at small and large facilities in the Congress. In addition,
years prior, DIFCO installed a high- steel industry. The company also Sen. Isakson worked
tech micro-filtration wastewater hosted a tour for Peru’s vice presi- closely with NASF on the
treatment system that, according to dent, who is involved in manufac- Chrome PEL issue.

turing in that country.

As any finisher or chemical suppli-
er will tell you, environmental com-
pliance comes at a premium, but for
Dixie Industrial Finishing it is well
worth the expense. “We made the
investment so our customers would
have a great sense of security and so
we could sleep at night,” Jones said.
DIFCO increased capacity on its rod-plating line Dixie Industrial Finishing operates five automat-
by 260%, allowing the company to be more
“There’s also a sense of fulfillment
ed plating lines, including large part size capaci-
competitive with imports and grow its market ty tanks (13 feet long X 5 feet deep X 34 inches that you’re doing the right thing.”
share. wide) that allow efficient processing of parts. The same can be said for the

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 17

PLATER’Sprofile responsibility, economic impact, and
workforce excellence.”
In addition, Dr. Hoffman notes,
DIFCO boasts a multi-national,
multi-cultural workforce and pro-
vides company-funded English as a
Second Language (ESL) classes to
more than 20% of its employees.
The company offers in-house com-
puter software and keyboard train-
ing for its employees, encourages
them to attend job skill seminars,
and offers reimbursement for
tuition expenses. “As a local busi-
ness leader, Dixie is an advocate for
education and sees the need for
technical training provided by
DeKalb Technical College,” Dr.
Hoffman added. “Dixie Industrial
DIFCO engineers design, fabricate and install
their own equipment, including this line dedi-
Finishing Company genuinely cares
The quality is in the finish, says Jim Jones, vice
cated to processing bulk parts. president, Dixie Industrial Finishing.
about its workforce family and
Good corporate citizenship, tech-
lengths DIFCO goes through to the common areas (bathrooms, nical wizardry, green focus, and
ensure the overall safety, health, kitchen, etc.). “If you are taking care analytical prowess aside, DIFCO’s
and well being of its employees. In of those areas for your employees,” success and continuous improve-
illustration, Jones recalled the story the inspector told Jones, “then it’s ment essentially hinges on a gen-
about how an inspector toured his likely you are also taking care of the uine “team spirit” and the fact that
facilities during a routine ISO operational aspects of your busi- all employees—from production
audit. While Jones was eager to take ness.” And he was right. DIFCO’s line operators, to management, to
the visitor straight to the plant, the workman’s compensation modifi- porters—take a strong sense of
inspector first asked to see some of cation rate was 0.84 for 2010 (and pride and ownership in the compa-
falling). It’s also worth noting that ny. On one end, supervisors are con-
the average term of employment for tinually challenged to boost quality
all employees at Dixie Industrial and productivity, while perform-
Finishing is 131⁄2 years. ance-based incentives aim to moti-
Attributes such as these helped vate and reward line workers. At the
DIFCO earn the 2005 Manufacturer end of the day, everyone comes
of the Year Award (Small together to achieve a common goal:
Manufacturer Category). For those operational excellence.
who nominated the company for the Jones, in another of his parabolic
coveted honor, the justification is catch phrases, smiles and states
abundantly clear. simply: “All of us are smarter than
“Dixie Industrial Finishing is rec- one of us.”
ognized as a valued and respected
presence in DeKalb County,” stated
Dr. Robbin Hoffman, president of
DeKalb Technical College. “Its cus- REFERENCES
tomer base includes small, medium, 1. Visual Shop from Cornerstone
and large manufacturers who, in Systems, Inc. (CSI) is a customiz-
turn, supply parts to large automo- able software system that allows
tive manufacturers and other global finishers to measure a variety of
companies. Many large companies variables and perform different
use the parts plated by Dixie functions, including: production
Industrial Finishing in the produc- optimization, quality assurance,
tion of goods distributed through- cost/benefit assessment, quota-
out America. Dixie consistently tions, order invoicing and track-
www.metalfinishing.com/advertisers proves to be a leader in corporate ing, among other aspects.

18 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

*Atotech Deutschland GmbH, **Atotech U.K.
thermal aging behaviors and their
Thermal Aging of Technical effect on contact resistance proper-
ties. Testing was carried out in accor-
Hard Gold Electrodeposits dance with the EN IEC 512 Standard
[17] (Measuring parameters: I = 10
mA, U = 20 mV, F = 5 cN). For each

E lectrolytic or electroless gold

deposition is used to provide a
long life and reliable conductive and
The following studies utilized the
three commercially available types of
0.3 μm gold test deposit, the mean of
30 individual measurements was
used [17].
corrosion-resistant final coating. [1- alloy hardened acid gold processes Results show excellent contact
5]. However, even gold has its limits that have been designed for high- resistance stability over a wide cur-
when it comes to stability. The elec- speed applications and selective dep- rent density range with low “as-plat-
troplating process does not establish osition at high current densities: ed” values of 2-2.8 mOhm for all
thermal equilibrium, leaving metal deposit types. As mentioned previ-
coatings prone to the development • cobalt (Aurocor® HSC*) ously, various thermal treatments
of defects, dislocations and grain • nickel (Aurocor® HSN*) were investigated. To simulate the
boundaries. These crystalline struc- • iron (Aurocor® HSF*) thermal behavior of reflow condi-
tural defects that are mainly deter- tions, test deposits were 5x cyclic
mined by interdiffusion processes Unless indicated, a gold content of heat treated at 280°C for 2 minutes.
form the starting point of the aging 8 g/l was used for all studies. Brass Again, little significant increase of
effect [6-9]. Diffusion can occur and bronze substrates were used, and contact resistance was observed, irre-
above defects or grain boundaries the standard process sequence is
and lead to intermetallic phases. highlighted in Figure 1. Unless indi-
In addition to this, most technical cated, deposits comprised 1.5 μm
gold processes contain alloying met- nickel (with additive) with a final
als, such as cobalt, nickel or iron, coating of either 0.3 μm or 0.8 μm
together with other inorganic and gold.
organic species (e.g. cyanide and
potassium) which co-deposit within
the gold layer and subsequently alter
the crystalline structure.
Heat treatment of electrodeposit-
ed gold coatings may induce recrys-
tallization. This recrystallization
process may also cause increased
pore formation, which may signifi-
cantly influence contact resistance
This paper describes the recrystal-
lization effect resulting from heat Figure 2. Contact resistance vs. current density after
Figure 1. Process sequence: Nickel and alloy gold dep-
treatment of various types of hard osition on bronze and brass base cyclic thermal aging (280°C/ 5 x 2 minutes) for all
materials. three types of gold electrodeposit.
gold electrodeposits. Thermal
aging and its dramatic effect on
contact resistance properties will spective of hard gold type (see Figure
also be examined as well as ways to Contact resistance measurement 2).
achieve stability after severe heat as a means to monitor aging behav- A further investigation at 300°C
exposure. iors. Comprehensive measurements for 5 minutes shows a slight increase
have been carried out to test various in contact resistance for Au/Ni and

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 19

speaking Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS)
and Electron Energy Loss
Spectroscopy (EELS). Results indi-
Au/Fe (1.7 mOhm and 1.3 mOhm, cated that at a current density of 30
respectively). However, these results A/dm2, deposits from the bench-
are within error limits and, therefore, mark exhibit a significantly higher
Figure 5. 30A/dm2, 5μm Au/Co (Aurocor® HSC) /5μm
proportion of carbon, nitrogen and nickel deposit on stainless steel after thermal aging
potassium compared to that present 300°C/5 min.
in Aurocor® HSC. These results sug-
gest differences in cobalt incorpora-
tion and electrodeposition mecha-
nisms for the two gold processes. The
benchmark deposit showed an
increased incorporation of cyanide.
This incorporation mechanism is Figure 6. 30A/dm2, 5μm Au/Co (benchmark)/ 5μm
dependent on the applied current nickel deposit on stainless steel after thermal aging
density since below 30 A/dm2, no 300°C/5 min.

significant change to contact resist-

ance was observed. At low current shows a significantly higher growth
density, the benchmark product of gold crystals, particularly at the
could, for example, result in the sim- nickel-to-gold interface. Due to this
ple co-deposition of Au and Co, crystal growth, pores can be observed
while at high current density over the entire current density range,
organometallic complexes such as with emphasis at grain boundaries
potassium gold cyanide may also be (macro pores). In contrast, the
incorporated. In practice, probably Aurocor® HSC electrodeposits
Figure 3. Contact resistance vs. current density for all both mechanisms will occur at a exhibit very low porosity with larger
three types of gold electrodeposit after thermal aging varying ratio over the entire current gold crystals observed at the gold
(300°C/5 minutes).
density range. This increased materi- surface compared to those seen near
al incorporation will lead to an in- the nickel interface. The entire gold
can be interpreted as a trend. (see creased number of defects within the surface is comprised of nanopores.
Figure 3). gold deposit, resulting in a negative Pore formation has been further
Similar deposit testing at 300°C effect on porosity, diffusion behavior investigated using transmission elec-
for 5 minutes from a commercial and thermal stability. tron microscopy (TEM).
Au/Co electrolyte (hereafter referred Comprehensive studies have been TEM provides direct imaging of
to as benchmark) showed a signifi- carried out to investigate morpholo- objects by means of electron beams.
cant contact resistance increase to gy changes during the heat treat-
ment of gold electrodeposits.

Thermally induced recrystalliza-

tion and pore formation. This FIB/
SEM technique requires high thick-
ness and sample preparation consist-
ing of stainless steel coated with an
initial 5μm nickel (from a sulfamate Figure 7. TEM images of Aurocor HSC and benchmark
Au/Co deposits after thermal aging (300°C/1 h). A
electrolyte) followed by 5μm of gold palladium intermediate layer is deposited to mini-
electrodeposit using a current densi- mize or prevent diffusion from the nickel interface.
Figure 4. Significant increase of contact resistance for ty of 30A/dm2. The following inves-
benchmark test deposit (plated at 50ASD) after ther-
mal aging (300°C/ 5 min.) tigation compares 2x Au/Co process- For this technique, ultra-thin sample
es: Aurocor® HSC and a commercial specimens are required, through
equivalent (benchmark). The heat which the electrons pass.
more than 25mOhm for a sample treatment conditions used for the The 1μm palladium intermediate
plated at 50ASD [18]. electrodeposits were 300°C for 1 layer was deposited to prevent nickel
To fully understand this difference, hour. diffusion and consequently elimi-
electrodeposits from both Au/Co The following FIB/SEM section nate any potential influence on the
electrolytes Aurocor® HSC and the images depict varying magnifica- aging process of the gold coating.
benchmark were subjected to ele- tions with 10, 4 and 1μm scales. After thermal aging, pore forma-
ment analysis using X-Ray The benchmark electrodeposit tion was observed to be more pro-

20 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

speaking Pore formation is the result of
heat-induced grain growth.
Agglomeration and crystal growth
cause gaps or pores in the layer struc-
ture. There are five different restruc-
turing processes [21]:

1.Merging of point defects/blem-

ishes and their degradation
2. Decrease of dislocations and
3.Restructuring of dislocations of
high energy to ones of low energy
4. Absorption of point defects
and dislocations of grain bound-
5. Reduction of the entire grain
Figure 8. Line Scan STEM X-EDS above a gold surface with noticeable pore. Electron density clearly diminishes in boundary area
the vicinity of the pore. This image was taken using a combined STEM/X-EDS unit.

Figure 9 illustrates the STEM

the X-ray Energy Dispersive image of the coalescing of pores after
Spectrometer (XEDS). Figure 8 heat treatment.
shows a decreased electron density The overall procedure can be inter-
above the scanned pore compared to preted as dynamic recovery. Despite
the observed increase above detected their volume, large grains or crystals
Figure 9. STEM image: The left picture shows a sam- the gold atoms. possess a smaller effective surface
ple without heat treatment with individual pores in
the layer structure, while the image on the right
shows coalescing of the pores after thermal aging.

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Figure 10. Crystal structure diffraction patterns for process you will be in
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Figure 11. Crystal structure diffraction patterns for
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Aurocor HSC and benchmark after thermal aging
(1h/300°C), taken using the TEM dark field mode. The
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www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 21

speaking diffract the electron beam. However,
each random bright spot represents a
crystals is isochronous to the forma-
tion of pores. Comparative studies
small amount of crystals with a larg- with the transmission electron
compared to smaller grain size. er crystallite per unit area. microscope show significant forma-
Hence, grain growth results in a The TEM was used to further high- tion of pores (macro as well as meso
lower energy situation. Grain growth light the contrasting grain size differ- pores) for the benchmark Au/Co
is the result of interface realignment ences between the 2x deposits. Figure electrodeposits, in contrast to the
and not coalescence. [22-24]. 11 illustrates a high-resolution area Aurocor HSC Au/Co, which consist-
The results clearly show the differ- of the sample within the dark field ed of significantly smaller crystallites
ent behavior to thermal stress for mode. The different grain sizes could and nanopores (diameters below 10–
both Aurocor HSC and the bench- be determined, with <10nm for the 50nm). The Au/Fe electrodeposits
mark electrodeposits. The STEM Aurocor HSC compared to exhibited a similar trend to the latter
images illustrate the different grain 50–200nm for the benchmark with minimal observed recrystalliza-
growth. Slow moving electrons are deposit. tion and excellent thermal stability.
scattered elastically upon impact For more information, please
onto a two-dimensional periodic SUMMARY e-mail kevin.martin@atotech.com.
structural element. Diffraction peaks The detailed studies carried out out-
of constructively interfering electron line the behavior of various hard ABOUT THE AUTHORS
waves are displayed on a fluorescent gold electrodeposits after heat-treat- Dr. Olaf Kurtz obtained his Ph.D. in
screen. ment (thermal aging). Physical Chemistry, investigating the
Figure 10 displays the diffraction Contact resistance measurements growth of rhodium on rhenium [0001]
patterns for both heat treated sam- were carried out for both the cyclic surface and HOPG by means of UHV
ples. Aurocor® HSC shows concen- (five times each for 2 minutes at investigations methods. He has been work-
tric rings while the benchmark 280°C), and also at 300°C for 5 min- ing with Atotech since 2000, assuming
depicts random, bright spots. The utes of heat treatments. Only the various positions such as head of R&D for
rings correspond to varying lattices benchmark Au/Co showed a signifi- microstructure technology developments
containing many small crystals that cant increase in contact resistance and product manager. Dr. Kurtz is cur-
for the 5 minutes at 300°C heat rently the worldwide product manager for
Promote your company in treatment. XPS and EELS examina- Atotech’s Functional Electronic Coatings
tions detected high levels of carbon, (FEC) business unit, providing chemistry
nitrogen and potassium present in and process solutions to the connector and
Metal Finishing’s these test deposits. This demon- IC/Leadframe/OSD industries.
strates that at current densities as
NEW Finishers’ high as 30A/dm2 a significant David Brookes obtained his Graduate of
amount of organics can be incorpo- Royal Society of Chemistry in 1982, and
Directory! rated into the gold deposit. These co- was awarded Chartered Chemist status in
deposits strongly influence the diffu- 1984. He has been employed in the metal
Listings start at $19.99 sion processes and accumulate at the finishing industry since 1977, qualified as
deposit surface. LIMF in 1983, and has worked for
per year After increasing the aging period at Atotech since 1995. Brookes currently
300°C to 1 hour, a dramatic increase serves as research chemist for Atotech’s
The Finishers’ Directory is an
in contact resistance is observed. The Functional Electronic Coatings (FEC)
online resource that enables poten- use of a palladium barrier layer dra- and Precious Metal (PM) business unit.
matically prevents the increase in
tial customers to quickly identify
contact resistance after aging, irre- REFERENCES
surface finishers based on a range spective of the gold-alloy type. 1. H. Kaiser, Edelmetallschichten,
The study findings, together with Leuze Verlag 2002
of variables, including company
TOF-SIMS analyses confirm that 2. M. Braunovic, V.V. Konchits,
name, business served, finishing this contact resistance increase, after N.K. Myshkin, Electrical
thermal aging at 300°C for 1 hour, Contacts, CRC Press 2007
operations performed, and
to be solely as a result of the diffu- 3. Y. Okinaka, M. Hoshino, Gold
geographical location. sion and surface oxidation of nickel Bulletin, 31 (1), 3 (1998)
from the intermediate layer and not 4. I.R. Christie, B.P.Cameron, Gold
Get your company listed attributed to the gold electrodeposit. Bulletin, 27 (1) 12 (1994)
today at FIB/SEM studies illustrate strong 5. B. Gaida, K. Aßmann,
recrystallization of the Au/Ni as well Technologie der Galvanotechnik,
www.mffinishersdirectory.com as the benchmark Au/Co deposits. Eugen G. Leuze Verlag,
Thermally initiated growth of gold Saulgau/Würth, 1996

22 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

speaking Engng. Semin. On Electrical
Contacts, pp.13, Illinois Inst. Of
20. D.B. Williams, C.B. Carter,
Technology, Chicago (1979) Transmission Electron
6. D. Gupta, P.S. Ho, Thin Solid 14. K.G. Ashurst, R.W. Neale, Microscopy, Plenum Press – New
Films, 1980, 72, 399-418 Trans. Inst. Metal Finishing, 46, 81 York and London, 1996
7. Z. Marinkovic, V. Simic, Thin (1967) 21. H. Hieber, K. Pape, Aging of
Solid Films, 1981, 75, 229-335 15. F. I. Nobel, B.D. Ostrow, D.W. thin gold films, Gold Bull., 1982,
8. G.W.B. Ashwell, R. Thomson, Plating & Surface 15, (3)
Heckingbottom, J. Electrochem. Finishing, 52, 1001 (1965) 22. G. Gottstein: Physikalische
Soc., 1981, 128, 649-654 16. S.M. Garte, Plating & Surface Grundlagen der Materialkunde,
9. J.M.Poate, Gold Bull., 1981, 14, Finishing, 53, 1335 (1966). Springer, 2001
2-10 17.http://global.ihs.com/stan- 23. F.J. Humphreys und M.
10. M. Antler, Gold Plated dards.cfm?seleced_org=IEC&RI Hatherly: Recrystallization and
Contacts: Effect of Thermal D=Z56&MID=5280&s_kwcid=ie Related Annealing Phenomena,
Aging on Contact Resistance, c%20standard|3120853664&gcli Elsevier, 2004
Plating & Surface Finishing, p.85, d=CMnCuqnHmqACFSIdawodv 24.Ilschner: Werkstoffwissenschaften
1998 1r7cw und Fertigungstechnik, Springer,
11. H. Kumakura, M. Sekiguchi, 18. O. Kurtz, J. Barthelmes, 2005
IEICE Trans. Electron. Vol. E82- R.Rüther, M. Danker, F. Lagorce- 25. G. Ertl, J. Küppers, Low
C, No.1 Jan 1999 Broc, F. Bozsa, D. Brookes, Gal- Energy Electrons and Surface
12. N. Birks, G.H. Meier, vanotechnik 7/2010, 1503 Chemistry, VCH, Weinheim
“Introduction of High 19. O. Kurtz, J. Barthelmes, (1985).
Temperature Oxidation of R.Rüther, M. Danker, F. Lagorce- 26.N. Kanani, Galvanotechnik, Carl
Metals”, Edward Arnold Ltd., Broc, F. Bozsa, D. Brookes Hanser Verlag München Wien,
1983 Jahrbuch der Oberflächentechnik 2000, ISBN 3-446-21024-5
13. M.R. Pinnel, J.E. Bennet, Proc. 2010, Band 66, Eugen G. Leuze


www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 23

BY OMEGASONICS, SIMI VALLEY, CALIF. tabletop model at one or more loca-
tions. That gives them production
flexibility,” Pedeflous said. “In
other applications, feature–rich
Key Guidelines Pertaining to models with capabilities such as
‘set-and-forget’ tanks may help
Ultrasonic Cleaning Equipment boost productivity.”
In terms of applications, ultrasonic
and Process Performance cleaning systems are used to cleanse
or sanitize a wide variety of items
that are sometimes intricate, require

W hile there are few specific

rules for benchmarking the
performance of an ultrasonic sys-
of these relatively intricate valves to
clean, the man put in extensive
precision or are delicate, such as jew-
elry or surgical instruments. Of
course, the technology is also highly
tem, there are some general consid- “We brought in an ultrasonic unit effective in cleaning more robust
erations regarding the overall need and proved that the task could be items such as components used in
for a new system, or evaluating the accomplished better, much quicker automotive, marine, aerospace, and
day-to-day performance of your and with no exposure to the caustic other industrial applications.
present system. solvent,” Pedeflous explained. “It not
Following are some general guide- only made good economic sense, but Why aren’t my workpieces
lines about ultrasonic cleaning it also removed a safety issue.” getting as clean today as they
equipment and performance: did yesterday?
How do I know what size ultra- “The usual answer to that question
How do I know when it’s time to sonic cleaner is best for my oper- is: Something has changed,”
advance to ultrasonic cleaning? ation? Pedeflous said. The change, however,
If you are evaluating whether to Pedeflous advises those who are is not always found at the cleaning
switch to ultrasonic cleaning, you thinking of purchasing ultrasonic station, he adds. Once temperature,
also need to evaluate how you are systems—either for the first time, or chemical concentration and all other
cleaning the item(s) in-question an additional unit—to talk with sup- cleaning parameters have been ruled
now, and what are the results. pliers who carry a full range of equip- out, the search should proceed to
Results can be measured in terms of ment sizes consider changes in the manufac-
the labor, time and cleanliness of and turing steps.
the workpieces you are cleaning models. Common sources of
now. It can also be measured in “In many problems include
terms of safety— the risk via expo- instances, changes in lubricants,
sure to solvents and other harsh an opera- manufacturing
chemicals that may be harmful to tion can do processes, and even
workers and the environment. fine with a raw materials.
In a majority of instances, ultra-
sonic cleaning is much more effi-
cient and cost-effective than manu-
al cleaning or other methods of
degreasing. Frank Pedeflous, of
Simi Valley, Calif.–based
Omegasonics, recounts a recent
instance when his firm performed a
comparison for a bottler who had
an employee working solely on
cleaning filler valves with a power-
ful acid. This manual work required
him to suit-up and wear heavy
gloves to clean the valves with a
brush. Because there were so many

24 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

speaking required for effective cleaning.”
On the other hand, too much
time ranging from 10 to 15 minutes
minimum (depending on the size of
ultrasonic power may result in cavi- the tank and the nature and concen-
Clogged filters, misdirected coolant tation erosion occurring on delicate tration of the chemicals being used)
nozzles and improper machining or or highly polished parts that are near prior to use. When completely
finishing practices may also cause the transducer-radiating surface. degassed, small bubbles will not be
ultrasonic cleaning problems. (Cavitation is the formation and col- seen rising to the liquid surface dur-
Remember, a change that may be lapse of low-pressure bubbles that ing ultrasonic operation.
considered inconsequential to the can pit the surface of metals.)
manufacturing process might result Aluminum, copper, brass and other Will ultrasonic cleaning damage
in less effective cleaning—until the soft metals are especially susceptible electrical components?
necessary adjustments are made. to cavitation erosion. If you regularly clean electronic
parts, an ultrasonic electronics clean-
How much ultrasonic power does What is “degassing” and why is it er is the best tool for the job. The
your cleaning tank require? important? common concern is that ultrasonic
The right amount of ultrasonic ener- Degassing is the process of removing cleaners will destroy delicate compo-
gy (usually expressed in watts/gal- small, suspended gas bubbles and nents. However, advances in ultra-
lon) depends on the size of the clean- dissolved gas from a liquid prior to sonic technology have eased this con-
ing bath and the difficulty of the using it for ultrasonic cleaning. cern by replacing the single frequen-
cleaning requirement. Tanks in the “Unless you remove the dissolved cy wavelength approach—known to
1- to 2-gallon range often provide up gas, it can migrate into cavitation- harm electronic parts—with a vari-
to 90 watts per gallon of ultrasonic bubbles during their formation,” able frequency approach, called
power, plenty for most jobs, even Pedeflous stated. “This prevents the “sweeping.” This advance in ultra-
cleaning out the ultra-fine passages bubbles from imploding correctly, sonic technology has not only led to
of fuel injector nozzles. which reduces the cleaning effect. reduced production costs, but has
“Achieving the same cleaning effect Also, the gas bubbles will absorb proven to enhance reliability and
in larger tanks requires less energy ultrasonic energy, reducing the ultra- reduce warranty costs as well.
density,” Pedeflous advises. sound cleansing intensity inside the As Pedeflous explains: When elec-
“Excellent cleaning has been demon- tank.” tronic parts are immersed in an
strated in tanks having 50 gallons Liquids should be degassed by rais- ultrasonic cleaner, cleaning occurs
capacity with only 25–30 watts per ing the temperature, adding the wherever the liquid makes contact
gallon. The more difficult the appli- cleaning chemistry, and operating with the parts. Higher ultrasonic fre-
cation, the greater energy density is the ultrasonic energy for a period of quency can penetrate smaller open-
ings and remove tinier particles.
Since the liquid reaches into small
crevices and cavities that are impossi-
ble to clean manually, ultrasonic
cleaning electrical assemblies and
electronic components is an ideal
approach. Furthermore, today’s
advanced ultrasonic cleaning equip-
ment is designed to prevent “part res-
onance”—the internal agitation of
parts due to recurring harmonic
vibrations—that otherwise might
damage more sensitive items.

For more information call Frank

Pedeflous at Omegasonics at (805) 583-
0875, write at 330 E East St #A Simi
For many applications, ultrasonic cleaning can cut down on costs, while at the same time produce Valley, CA 93065-7523, e-mail:
parts that not only look and perform better but also require less frequent subsequent cleaning. frankp@omegasonics.com, or visit

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 25

Use As Directed
eOx Economic from RPM
Technology may be used in ultra-
sonic baths, parts washers, cleaning
fountains, as well as other popular
RPM Technology’s eOx Economic: industrial cleaning machines.
Aqueous-based and non-toxic, it
A Greener Cleaning Chemistry safely removes all manner of oil,
grease, and dirt from surfaces with
Powerful aqueous-based formula works wonders little effort. Following are a few
for Youngstown, Ohio-based architectural panel stipulations regarding use:

and aluminum extrusion finishing operation. eOx Economic is non-flammable

and can be safely heated. For
immersion or ultrasonic baths, RPM
J ohn Vinkler had grown weary of
the downsides associated with tra-
ditional, solvent-based cleaning
around on the part. When the thin-
ner evaporated, it would just leave
the oil or foreign substances
Technology recommends
50°C/122°F to minimize the
evaporation rate.
chemistries: irritating odors, envi- behind.”
ronmental issues and the associated That all changed when Spectrum
A highly concentrated product, eOx
compliance costs, etc. So, as shop Metal Finishing made the complete
must be sufficiently diluted accord-
foreman of Youngstown, Ohio– conversion to eOx Economic. More
ing to use. Otherwise, a white haze
based Spectrum Metal Finishing, he than four months using the new sys-
or stripes may remain after drying,
took it upon himself to seek out a tem, there’s no turning back. “I’ve
especially on very smooth or shiny
safer, more cost-effective alternative noticed that it cleans our metals a lot
surfaces. Note: This haze will disap-
for the company and its employees. better than solvents do,” Vinkler
pear when the surface is treated
An exhaustive but fortuitous noted. “Now it’s nothing but eOx
again with the correct dilution.
Internet search uncovered eOx when we clean the parts before pre-
Economic, a non-hazardous, aque- treatment.”
Simply soaking a part in a solution
ous-based cleaner manufactured by Beyond the highly touted perform-
of eOx Economic for an extended
RPM Technology of Reno, Nev. (See ance attributes of the product, period of time will not be sufficient
sidebar). Made without chlorinated Vinkler is equally impressed with its for cleaning. Some mechanical
compounds or listed chemicals, the range of uses. Whether removing action—brush, sponge, aeration,
non-toxic and non-flammable eOx tape residue leftover from poly- etc.—is still required to break the
Economic boasts numerous attrib- masking, or dissolving stubborn surface tension of the dirt.
utes: fast, intensive cleaning action; caulking from the joints of fabricat-
contains no phosphates, acids, ed metal parts, eOx Economic has Rinsing all parts is key to ensuring
butyls or silicones; and is compatible proven to be an all-around work- that no residue remains. Rinsing
with cleaning fountains, immersion horse for Spectrum. This flexibility with warm water is not necessary
or ultrasonic machines, parts wash- comes in particularly handy for a but will enhance the drying process.
ers, and high-pressure equipment. company that offers a variety of fin- If needed, use compressed air to
What’s more, the product—tested by ishes. expedite drying time.
the University of Ghent, Belgium— “We also offer a powder coating
won’t harm metals or plastics, RPM finish, and in doing so coat alu-
Technology claims. minum as well as structural steel bottom-line benefits to consider.
“After many successful trial runs materials,” Vinkler explained. “eOx With the previous thinner-type
on the wide variety of aluminum and Economic has proven to be just as cleaning products, for instance,
steel materials we processes, we useful on steel as well as aluminum. Spectrum Metal Finishing had to
found eOx Economic outperformed We use eOx Economic to strip oils treat the spent towels used to apply
our solvent-based cleaners at every from these materials prior to pre- the solvents as hazardous waste.
turn,” Vinkler explained, citing the treatment and powder coating. “Before, we had to ‘can’ everything
company’s focus on perforated archi- “We also do a lot of finishing for up,” Vinkler noted. “But with the
tectural panels and the inherent full structural handrails—it works eOx system the towels go out with
challenge in stripping away oils uti- really well there because [fabricators] the regular trash. Not only have we
lized in machining such parts. “The use wax on their grinders for cut down on the amount of haz-
thinners we were using never fully smoothing finish welds and remov- ardous waste going out, but it has
lifted the oils away, but would ing weld spatter from the railing.” helped our employees out because
instead soften up the oil and move it Then there are the more practical, they don’t have to smell the sol-

26 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com


Before and after photos illustrating the removal of oils from perforated aluminium panels with eOX Economic prior to pretreatment and painting.

Small architectural panels were treated with eOx Economic to strip away wax and sanding debris. The product easily breaks the surface tension of the wax.

vents anymore—just the fresh scent Finishing management of the goal industry), the finisher has been a major
of eOx!” there, but now that they’ve converted force in the metal coatings industry since
over they couldn’t be happier,” RPM 1993. Located just one hour from
THE NOT-SO-HARD SELL Technology’s Esposito said. “They Cleveland or Pittsburgh, the company’s
The key to Spectrum Metal don’t have any rags containing VOCs products have been shipped from its
Finishing’s successful conversion to that they need to get rid of. All that 70,000-square-foot headquarters to cus-
the eOx Economic aqueous product hazardous waste is gone.” tomers and job sites throughout the United
had as much to do with the technical Everyone at Spectrum Metal States, Eastern Canada, the Caribbean
and sales support the company Finishing is also pleased to learn and Pacific Rim. Projects range from the
received during the initial induction that—as a result of the changeover— Philadelphia Eagles Football Stadium to
phase as it did with the performance overall cleaning and compliance Bandaijima in Niigata, Japan.
of the product itself. For this Vinkler costs at the company have been Spectrum Metal Finishing offers a wet-
credits RPM Technology principal reduced as well (as much as 50%, by on-wet application service using a single
Jim Esposito, who coordinated with Vinkler’s math). bake process. A continuous-line system
the foreman very closely early on. “eOx has proven to be a big help to ensures high-quality color consistency.
“Jim worked real well with me, business,” he said. “I’m glad I ran To learn more about Spectrum Metal
going back and forth sending sam- into it.” Finishing, please call Neil Chrisman at
ples,” Vinkler said. “eOx Economic (330) 758-8358 or visit www.spectrum-
did what he said it was going to do, For more on eOx Economic, please visit metal.com.
and it’s hard to find anything that
says it does something and then it
actually does it!”


Do you have a
That was the “soft” sell. It typically FINISHING product/service success story
requires a bit more nudging to per- Spectrum Metal Finishing specializes in that might qualify as a
suade finishers to make the switch liquid paint or powder coating, with an case study?
from a process that had been in place emphasis on commercial construction
Send your ideas to
for years. “It took [Vinkler] some projects. Based in Youngstown, Ohio (the
time to convince Spectrum Metal birthplace of the aluminum extrusion re.tucker@elsevier.com or call

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 27

Aerosol-Dispensed Cleaners the OSHA as “an aerosol which is
required to be labeled flammable
and Cleaning—Part III under the Federal Hazardous
Substances Labeling Act (15 U.S.C.
1261). For the purposes of para-

I n this last installment of my three-

part series on aerosol-dispensed
cleaning, I will cover the two signifi-
mixture may well be ignitable in
some other test apparatus or in
your shop if spark sources aren’t
graph (d) of this section, such
aerosols are considered Class IA
cant hazards of using aerosol-dis- eliminated.
pensed cleaners for local site clean- In immersion cleaning with organ- HIGH FLASH POINT MATERIALS
ing applications: flammability and ic solvents, flash point determines CAN FORM AEROSOLS
inhalation toxicity. which electrical classification will Design of heat exchangers in chem-
apply. In spray cleaning, however, the ical plants requires acceptance of
THE FALLACY OF FLASH POINT flash point of the liquid does not the meaning of the title of this sec-
RELATIVE TO AEROSOL BLENDS determine which electrical classifica- tion. These heat exchangers can use
Many believe that aerosols are safe tions will apply. high boiling organic liquids which
below their flash points. Serious Use of liquid sprays in air is cov- have high flash points as coolants
fires have occurred in the chemical ered by OSHA (U.S. Occupational to remove heat. A safety problem is
process industries because of that Health and Safety Administration), that any leak of these pressurized
belief. with strong assistance from the high-flash liquids from a pipe, a
In fact, aerosols of combustible liq- NFPA (National Fire Protection weld, a seal, or a pump will form an
uids at temperatures well below their Association), in OSHA 1910.123- aerosol in the same way as does a
flash points can be as ignited as can 126, and .107. low flash material propelled from
vapor-air mixtures of flammable liq- A flammable aerosol is defined by an aerosol can.
uids. Eichhorn1 made this observa-
tion more than a half-century ago,
and introduced a conceptual ideal-
ized diagram to describe this situa-
tion. (See Figure 1.)
Many are also of the opinion that
aerosols composed of organic sol-
vents that do not have a measured
flash point cannot be ignited. Such is
unfortunately not the case, because
flash point is measured in an all-
vapor phase, not in the two-phase
vapor-liquid mixture that is an
Absence of a measured flash point,
for a single component or a mixture,
means that ignition was not noticed
when a spark of specific intensity was
applied to organic fuel(s) and air in a
specific, and not industrially rele-
vant, apparatus.
In other words, it is not that the
mixture can’t be ignited, it is that it
cannot be ignited in that specific
apparatus—in the vapor phase. The Figure 1

28 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

cleaningtimes of an aerosol.
Solvents, or solvent blends, with-
fires can and do happen.
Fortunately, in many cases the expe-
out measured LEL values used as rience is less than fatal because the
aerosols are probably but not meas- mass of flammable goods in the can
urably more safe from ignition; and (including propellant) is less than
so are somewhat preferred. one-half pound (12 volumetric
ounces capacity is common).
PREVENTION OF IGNITION OF The larger flammability hazard
AEROSOLS from use of aerosol cans is that a
Many ignore the potential for this handheld fire will lead to ignition of
outcome because aerosol cans are some larger quantity of fuel by a per-
commonly used, and shop fires with son not accustomed to managing
their use are not common. But such this hazard.

Figure 2

To summarize, organic liquids

with nearly all values of flash point
can form an aerosol by being forced
by pressure through an aperture,
thereby producing an aerosol. Some
can be ignited depending upon their
atomic composition, and some can-
not, for the same reason.


A limiting condition about ignitabil-
ity of aerosols is the vapor phase,
which is equivalent to a droplet size
of zero. That’s the condition in
which flammability tests (LEL/UEL)
are done (see Figure 1)—the vapor
phase, and not the two-phase condi-
tion of an aerosol.
A solvent blend that has no meas-
ured lower explosive limit (LEL), or
upper explosive limit (UEL), offers
no quantifiable margin of safety
when it’s emitted as an aerosol
spray. Simply because it couldn’t be
ignited in a standard vapor-phase
flammability test apparatus, that
does not model the two-phase con-
dition of an aerosol.
So LEL and UEL values don’t
specifically apply to the two-phase
condition of an aerosol. They do
speak to the effect of atomic com-
position on the ignitability of a sol-
vent mixture in the vapor phase,
but not in the two-phase condition www.metalfinishing.com/advertisers

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 29

Table 1 Preferred Solvent Blends for Aerosol Service

Products ␦d ␦p ␦h Surface Tension Molar Volume Flash Point °F LEL/UEL

dynes/cm cc/g-mole

AK-225ATE 15.5 6.2 3.6 20.2 87.7 NO

AKSOLVE AT 15.4 5.9 2.6 91.5 NO

71DE 15.8 6.2 2.7 16.6 101.5 NO

MCA 14.0 3.6 1.5 15.2 106.4 NO

X-DF 14.0 3.6 1.5 15.2 106.4 NO

AK-225AES 13.6 3.4 2.9 16.8 117.1 NO

AK-225R 13.4 2.9 1.4 128.6 NO NO

AK-225G 13.1 2.9 1.0 16.9 129.0 NO

AK-225A 13.7 2.9 1.7 129.8 NO

AK-225 13.4 2.9 1.4 16.2 130.1 NO

AK-225DH 13.4 2.9 1.4 16.3 130.1 NO

AK-225FPL 13.4 2.9 1.4 14 132.6 NO

X-H 12.0 0.0 0.0 14.4 157.7 NO

SFR 15.9 5.9 3.2 19.9 84.5 7/15.8

SMT 14.2 4.7 3.5 15.5 91.1 7/15

SDG 16.0 6.9 2.6 21.2 85.5 7/14

HDC Heavy 15.9 3.4 1.5 97.8 7.5/9
Degreaser C
XMS+ 14.3 4.1 3.0 14.9 94.3 6/15

MCA+ 14.7 4.1 1.9 16.1 98.2 6/11

72DE 15.8 6.2 2.7 19 90.9 6.7/13.7

CMS 14.9 4.2 2.8 19.2 93.2 6.3/14

SuprClean 15.8 6.7 4.7 80.6 5/14.4

AK-225T 14.2 2.9 2.7 17.6 114.1 5/10

72DA 15.8 6.3 3.1 90.4 5.9/14.5
Contact 14.4 0.9 0.6 124.0 5.5/9/0
Cleaner C
Solvokane 16.5 2.4 1.0 17.8 101.0 5.4/9.4

Solvokane X 16.5 2.4 1.0 20.6 101.0 5.4/9.4

71DA 15.3 5.3 3.1 16.4 99.4 5.1/12.7

Bromothane R/ 16.3 7.7 6.3 85.4 4/7.8
Lenium GS
71IPA 13.9 2.5 2.1 14.5 151.4 4/16

Solvokane S 16.4 2.4 1.0 18.8 101.0 4/12.5

C-HD 15.6 6.4 4.5 19.4 82.7 4.3/13.5

Bromothane E 16.3 7.5 7.6 83.4 3.8/7.5

30 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

Table 1 Preferred Solvent Blends for Aerosol Service

Products ␦d ␦p ␦h Surface Tension Molar Volume Flash Point °F LEL/UEL

dynes/cm cc/g-mole

Solvokane ELS 16.5 2.5 1.5 17.9 99.1 3.8/13.7

AXAREL 2000 15.6 4.0 5.2 140.8 111 2/12.7

Isoclean 15.8 5.9 14.2 76.5 53 2/12.7

U.S.P 7,767,635 B 16.6 7.8 3.3 77.8 NO

U.S.P 7,767,635 A 12.2 4.5 2.8 176.8 NO

U.S.P. 6,103,684 B 14.7 5.1 3.1 108.3 NO

U.S.P. 6,048,832 A 15.5 6.9 9.0 83.9 NO

U.S.P. 6,048,832 B 15.5 5.9 7.4 96.8 NO

Hubtron HDS 15.6 4.1 1.8 18.8 96.0 NO

There is only one cause of ignition companies, they are also available at pended in the air. Ventilation is nec-
of a can of aerosol cleaner—that an no charge from reputable sources, essary to carry away aerosol droplets
ignition source has been generated in such as U.S. OSHA in that air so they are not inhaled by
the zone where the aerosol has been (http://www/osha.gov), NFPA workers.
sprayed, or has been directed by ven- (http://www.nfpa.org), a local insur- The “amount” of ventilation is
tilation. ance carrier serving the site, and the sized by specifying a velocity of air in
An incomplete list of sources of Internet. The most important tactic whatever area of ductwork is used to
sparks includes: is for a responsible leader to audit carry away aerosol fumes from
compliance, over and over and over where spray cleaning work has been
• Gas or liquid-fueled open-flame again. done. That velocity must be more
equipment (naked flames), Not as a substitute for managing than sufficient to maintain solvent
• Cigarettes and associated match- elimination of ignition sources, the aerosols droplets (particles) in sus-
es/lighters (open flames), second (and perhaps more impor- pension in the exhaust air, but not
• Static electricity from mechanical tant) priority of action is to manage so much as to incur excessive energy
equipment or motion (which can area ventilation of air. loss or produce noise. Larger
be dampened by mats, as is done Aerosol material emitted from a droplets settle more rapidly (chang-
in fab shops producing spray can has two general fates. Some ing by the square of the droplet
semiconductors—though not for (hopefully most) wets the soiled sur- diameter), requiring higher veloci-
that reason), face, and remains there. The remain- ties to suspend them. OSHA ventila-
• Hot processes/hot work (welding der exists above the work area, sus- tion standard 1910.125 (dipping
by contractors or shrink and coating work with organic sol-
wrapping), vents) is a relevant reference.
• Failure of temperature-control
thermostats on hot work HAZARDS OF SOLVENT
• Heat sources (gas, electric, RESPIRATORY SYSTEMS
microwaves, radio frequency, The hazard presented by an aerosol
thermal fluids). droplet to the respiratory system
firstly depends upon the site within
Tactics for preventing experience the respiratory system where it is
of the image of Figure 2, by avoiding deposited, and secondly upon its
and quenching ignition sources, are inherent toxicity at the point of dep-
simple and proven—develop, follow, osition. And the path to that site is
and audit a program of local safety determined by its aerodynamics in
regulations. the air stream of breath, and aerody-
Figure 3
Available from for-profit training namics are all about droplet size.

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 31

cleaningtimes must be treated as if they were more
toxic, and have lower exposure limits.
ing, penetration of networks by dif-
fusion, and hand-applied mechani-
Droplets of a respirable aerosol While the exposure limit values cal force.
greater than around 30 microns promulgated by ACGIH about One selects a solvent blend for
(possibly barely visible to the eye) inhalation toxicity for solvent aerosol cleaning to avoid ignition of
aren’t well entrained in incoming air. aerosols are scarce, comparison to the solvents once they have evaporat-
It is likely many settle (because their the same data for solvent vapors is ed, and to best enable the combina-
inertia outweighs the buoyant force striking. tion of mechanisms noted above.
of the moving breath) outside TLVs for solvent aerosols are typi- And one has to recognize that the
human bodies, though some are cally two orders of magnitude below hazards of using a solvent blend
trapped in the nose and mouth on those for solvent vapors. dispensed from aerosol cans are sig-
breathing. This is called an inertial Certainly, details of the imposed nificantly more threatening to
separation mechanism. harm vary with the specific solvent, humans than is imposed by using
Droplets sized between around 10 and the existing condition of impact- that same blend in immersion
to 30 microns (not visible to the eye) ed lung tissue. Persons with asthma cleaning. Fortunately, there is a
penetrate into the curving torturous are not likely to be able to manage remedy for that increase of threat to
path that is the throat (pharynx) but inhalation of solvent aerosols. the respiratory system—wear a N95
impact on and stick to wet tissue sur- For these reasons, some prefer hospital mask.
faces. So they become deposited in aerosols which are not dispensed
the airways of the head. through expansion of a propellant, BIO
Smaller droplets (“thoracic and choose those dispensed through John Durkee is the author of the book,
aerosols”) can penetrate deeply into hand-pumped sprays. The latter pro- Management of Industrial Cleaning
the lungs. The myriad of passages duce relatively huge droplets—there- Technology and Processes, published by
within the alveoli (gas exchange by avoiding the harm described Elsevier (ISBN 0-0804-48887). He is an
region) of the lungs make them a above. independent consultant specializing in
“final” site for inertial separation of Unfortunately, the solvent clean- metal and critical cleaning. You can con-
droplets by particle size(s). Nearly all ing agents described in Table 1 aren’t tact him at PO Box 847, Hunt, TX 78024
droplets above about 1 micron are commercially packaged in suitable or 122 Ridge Road West, Hunt, TX
deposited there—sticking onto wet containers for that method of appli- 78024; 830-238-7610; Fax 612-677-
lung tissue. cation, as they are too volatile and 3170; or jdurkee@precisioncleaning.com.
Solvent in the vapor phase would expensive.
penetrate to this position as well. The hazards described above can
But the crucial difference, what be overcome, as can most involved
makes exposure limits of solvent with use of solvents. The approach is
aerosols be so low, is essentially simple: obtain and use personal pro-
density of contact. tective equipment.
The mass of liquid solvent held in a An operator applying solvents to
droplet of less than 1 micron diame- surfaces via aerosol delivery should
ter contains huge numbers of solvent at a minimum wear an N95 hospital
molecules that are all deposited breathing mask (and possibly appro-
where that droplet becomes trapped priate gloves) both during and after
on wet lung tissue, while vapor also use; at maximum, wear a self-con- REFERENCES
contains huge numbers of solvent tained respiration system. 1. Eichhorn, J. “Careful! Mists Can
molecules that condense over the The former is shown in Figure 3. Explode,” Petroleum Refiner, Vol.
more than 50 square meters of wet Proven specifications are that it will 34 No. 11, 1955, pages 194–196.
lung tissue. remove more than 95 percent of par- In Figure 1, the dew point line
The effect of inhaling aerosols is to ticles (droplets) whose sizes are above separates single-phase vapor
damage one’s lungs by administering 0.3 microns. Every hospital supply from two-phase liquid and
a large dose of whatever toxic harm store dispenses them at reasonable vapour regimes based on vapor
the solvent presents to a myriad of cost. pressure data. Both the lower
sites where oxygen transfer with the explosive limit (LEL) and upper
blood is accomplished. SUMMARY ABOUT explosive limits (UEL) are easily
Aerosols thus become an amplifier AEROSOL-DISPENSED SOLVENTS measured. The existence of the
for application of toxic damage to The nature of solvent cleaning with air/mist flammability regime has
the lungs—the applied dose is exag- aerosols is different than that of sol- been experimentally established
gerated vs. exposure to solvent vapor. vent cleaning under immersion. A and mathematically modeled for
And solvents which are less toxic, combination of mechanisms is specific systems in the last half
and have higher exposure limits, involved—surface wetting, solution- century.

32I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

The Evolution of Bio-Based rise to many exciting and innovative
technologies that otherwise might
Green Solvents never have developed.


G rowing concern over volatile

organic compounds (VOCs)
and other emissions is motivating
required for an application.
Solvents operate on the principle
of “like dissolves like.” Therefore, for
One of the most straightforward
methods of minimizing solvent in
adhesive and coating formulators to a solvent to work, it needs to have formulations is to assure that the
capture and recycle solvents, reduce similar chemical characteristics to efficiency of the conventional sol-
solvent use, or switch to solvents the substance that it is trying to dis- vent system is optimal. To obtain
with better environmental profiles. solve. Other factors that are impor- low viscosity, or alternatively high
Although environmentally suitable, tant in selecting a solvent or solvent solids content at a given viscosity,
“drop-in” replacements for conven- blend are listed in Table 1. solvents with good solvency power
tional solvents are still a distant Two of the primary applications must be employed. The solvent selec-
future vision, and a strong evolu- for solvents are for cleaning and for- tion for high solids formulations is
tionary path is developing to com- mulating. As one might expect, the not simple.
plete this quest. evolution of environmentally safe Ketones, such as methyl isobutyl
Even in “water-based” adhesives solvents has been faster in the clean- ketone (MIBK) and methyl ethyl
and coatings, solvents are sometimes ing area than in the formulating ketone (MEK), constitute solvents
used in conjunction with water to area. This is primarily due to the that combine good solvency and
dissolve or suspend components or greater technical requirements on effectiveness in reducing viscosity.
to provide a more efficient film the solvent with regard to formulat- Moreover, the relative low density of
forming function. For example, ing. But another contributing factor these solvents permits the most vol-
many water-reducible coatings con- is the shear volume of cleaning sol- ume possible per unit weight of sol-
tain small amounts of a “co-solvent” vents that are used. For an article vent—an important factor in comply-
such as a glycol ether or alcohol to focusing on greener cleaning com- ing with VOC regulations, generally
aid in coating and handling. pounds, the reader is directed to a expressed as grams/liter.
This article reviews new solvents previous Metal Finishing article,1 High solids formulations can only
that have been developed for the pur- which concentrates on the use of be achieved with the proper choice of
poses of: (1) formulating and pro- newer solvents in adhesive and coat- solvent for the specific resin in ques-
cessing adhesives, (2) cleaning equip- ing formulations. tion. Fortunately, several tools have
ment, and (3) removing contami- Solvent replacement technology is been developed to make this task eas-
nants from substrates prior to adhe- a diverse field that affects many ier, including solubility parameters.
sive bonding or coating. A leading industries. It is a field driven by regu- These are widely used to construct
technology in this pursuit is the lations implemented to protect our solubility maps, which can be used to
development of bio-based or “green” environment and health. However, select optimal solvent systems for a
organic solvents. these regulations often translate to specific resin base.
economic incentives and have given Shell Chemical Company has
Industrial solvents are vital In the Performance Properties Non-Performance Properties
adhesives and coatings industries.
• Dissolving (solvating) power • Raw material cost
They are used as component ingredi- • Viscosity • Disposal cost and cost to reduce emission
ents in formulated products or as • Evaporation rate levels
processing aids in manufacturing • Color • Conservation of resources and availability
(e.g., cleaning fluids). Different • Odor • Hazardous emissions (types and levels)
applications require specific solvat- • Toxicity • Health and safety factors
ing or other properties, and different • Flammability
solvents can be often blended to Table 1. Important Factors in Selecting a Solvent
achieve the specific properties

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 33

Property Ethyl Lactate D-Limonene Methyl Soyate
Boiling point, °C 154 179 333
Flash point, °C 47 51 140
Density 1.03 0.844 0.882
Solubility in water, % 100 Insoluble N/A
Surface tension, dynes/cm 28.9 26.7 31.6
Dielectric constant 15.4 2.36 42.2
Exposure limit, ppm 4 30 Not recommended
Table 2. Physical Properties of Green Solvents Produced from Renewable Resources

developed an even more efficient Solvent Relative Price

tool. This is a software program
called BlendPro. The program uses a Conventional solvents:
database of more than 180 solvents, Methyl ethyl ketone 1.0
including water, and contains a data-
base of more than 30 solubility maps Trichloroethylene 1.4
of commercial resins. Physical prop-
erties of a theoretical formulation Perchloroethylene 0.8
can easily be calculated via the pro- Methylene chloride 0.7
gram. BlendPro is claimed to calcu-
late which of the blended products N-Methyl pyrrolidone 3.3-4.0
best meets the technical require-
ments at the lowest costs.
There is also an excellent website, Bio-based solvents:
1/altern.cfm.htm (Solvent Ethyl lactate 1.9
Alternatives Guide - SAGE), which D-Limonene >0.9
provides a comprehensive tool for
pollution prevention information. Methyl Soyate 0.7-1.0
This is a computerized expert system
Table 3. Relative Prices of Selected Bio-Based and Conventional Solvents
that allows evaluation of specific
processes and generates a ranked list
of alternative solvents. Alternative
solvents are presented in the form of based feedstock. As such, they not resources such as corn, citrus, or soy-
case studies, economic and environ- only provide environmental benefit beans. Relative prices for these bio-
mental information, references, and from their use, but they also avoid based solvents and more traditional
so forth. The U.S. EPA Air Pollution the more costly petroleum-based solvents are shown in Table 3.
Prevention and Control Division route to production. It is hoped
developed SAGE for assistance on that bio-based solvents will avoid Ethyl Lactate. A very common clean-
parts cleaning and degreasing. the high cost (economic and envi- ing solvent is ethyl lactate. It is an
ronmental) and significant price environmentally benign solvent
BIO-BASED SOLVENTS fluctuation associated with petro- with properties superior to many
In recent years a new classification leum-derived solvents. conventional petroleum-based sol-
(“bio-based”) can be added to Several of the more common bio- vents. Unlike other solvents, which
industrial solvents. These green sol- based solvents that have recently can damage the ozone layer or pol-
vents can provide alternatives for been commercialized include ethyl lute groundwater, ethyl lactate is so
conventional solvents when regula- lactate, d-limonene, and methyl soy- benign that the U.S. Food and Drug
tory, environmental, or safety and ate. The physical properties of these Administration long ago approved
health pressures are exerted. They solvents are described in Table 2. All its use in food products.
are based on agricultural or bio- are produced from renewable Ethyl lactate is produced by the

34 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

Attribute Chlorinated Hydro-carbon Methyl Ethyl Ethyl Lactate D-Limonene Methyl Soyate
Good solvency Y N Y Y Y Y
Nonflammable Y N N N N Y
Low toxicity N N Y Y Y Y
Fast Y Y Y Y Y N
No surface Y Y Y Y Y N
Biodegradable N N N Y Y Y
Low odor N N N Y N Y
Material Y Y N Y Y Y
Competitive Y Y Y Y N Y
Table 4. Solvent Property and Performance Attributes 4

Both reactants are produced from agricultural materi-

als. Lactic acid is produced by fermentation of lactose
via specially developed bacteria, and ethanol is produced
from corn.
Ethyl lactate can also be blended with methyl soyate
(produced from soybean oil as indicated later in this arti-
Clean Parts.
cle) to create custom tailored solvents for various applica-
tions. Companies such as Vertec Biosolvents currently pro-
duce ethyl lactate in soy oil solvent blends. Applications
that are targeted include replacement of methlyene chlo-
ride, methyl ethyl ketone, and N-methyl pyrrolidone.
Until recently, the use of ethyl lactate has been limited
due to high production costs. However, advances in lactic
acid fermentation and separation and conversion tech-
nologies have driven down cost. It has been suggested by
industry experts that ethyl lactate could replace conven- I Clean Lines
tional solvents in more than 80% of the applications.
I Passivation Lines

D-Limonene. D-limonene is a solvent that is produced I Aqueous Chemistries

from citrus feedstock. The process involves squeezing the I Data Management
rind or peels of fruit (orange or lemon) in a steam extrac-
tor to produce oil. When the steam is condensed, a signif-
icant layer of oil (d-limonene) floats to the surface of the ®
water and can be collected.
In the past decade, the use of d-limonene has expanded
tremendously. The largest growth segment has been the
use of d-limonene in cleaning products. Much of the prod- Tel. 716.763.4343
uct goes into making paint, imparting orange fragrance,
and as a secondary cooling fluid.
As a straight solvent, d-limonene can replace a wide vari-
ety of products, including mineral spirits, methyl ethyl

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 35

adhesion&bonding based solvents are increasingly
becoming important as regulatory
ketone, acetone, toluene, glycol It has low toxicity relative to many pressures mount. However, perform-
ethers, and halogenated solvents. D- conventional solvents. Its high flash ance and cost factors must be the
limonene has solubility close to that point and high boiling point also first priority to the formulator when
of chlorinated fluorocarbons, indi- make it safer to store and handle seeking to replace conventional sol-
cating that it is a much better solvent than most commercial solvents. vents that have long been an integral
than typical mineral spirits. As with ethyl lactate and d- component in successful commer-
limonene, the best market opportu- cial products.
Soy-Based Solvents. As the name nities for soy-based solvents involve Table 4 lists solvent properties and
implies, soy-based solvents are pro- solvent cleaning applications. This performance requirements that are
duced from the oil in soybeans. The includes equipment cleaning as well nearly widespread across most sub-
most commercial of these is methyl as the removal and cleanup of resins. segments of the adhesives and
soyate. Methyl soyate has good sol- The use of soy-based solvents in sealants market. Conventional sol-
vency with many resins and contam- printing inks is well known and fully vents are compared to the evolving
inants and is readily biodegradable. commercial. Potential also exists in “green” solvents, and the possibility
adhesives and coatings, but further of a green solvent future can readily
product and process development be seen.
work is necessary to ensure commer-
cialization. The best market and BIO
application opportunities for methyl Edward M. Petrie is the sole proprietor of
soyate appear to include: co-solvents, EMP Solutions, a Cary, N.C.–based con-
resin removal, asphalt release agent sulting firm focused on solving problems
emulsions, and adhesive/coating in the adhesives and sealants industry. He
additives. also works as a technical expert for
Numerous formulated consumer SpecialChem. For more information, visit
products using methyl soyate are www.specialchem4adhesives.com.
already being produced and market-
ed. These range from hand cleaners
to auto care products as a replace-
ment for mineral spirits and other
solvents. Additional market oppor-
tunities are expanding utilizing
methyl soyate-based co-solvents with
ethyl lactate (Vertec Gold), D-
limonene (CITRUSoy), and other
organic solvents.

Others. The bio-based solvents

described previously are commer-
cially available. There are also many REFERENCES
products under development that 1. Durkee, J., “Cleaners from the
use proprietary technology to manu- Farm”, Cleaning Times Column,
facture solvents that mimic petrole- Metal Finishing, January 2008.
um-derived products. One example 2. BlendPro, Shell Chemical
of this activity is Gevo’s renewable Company, www.shell.com,
isobutanol, which will begin com- accessed June 2011.
mercial production in 2012. This 3. “Renewable Isobutanol for
product is claimed to result in a fully Solvents and Coatings”,
renewable and cost-competitive SpecialChem Renewable
isobutanol product that is chemical- Isobutanol Center, www.spe-
ly identical to petroleum-derived cialchem4coatings.com, accessed
isobutanol, making it a sustainable June 2011.
“drop-in” replacement for all n- 4. Wildes, S.G., Solvents:A Market
butanol and other solvents.3 Opportunity Study, Report pre-
pared by OmniTech
SUMMARY International, Ltd. for the United
Across all market applications, bio- Soybean Board, December 2007.

36 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

guestcolumn this may be a “communist plot” to
BY ROBERT B. ADAMS, CEF, ELECTROPLATING CONSULTANT, destroy America, and the rant goes
CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA on, often with no honest construc-
tive thought on success. These indi-
Dear U.S. Platers: viduals, too, have very little knowl-
edge of the Eastern mind and don’t
Don’t Overestimate China necessarily care to.
During my years in China, I have
spent little time with other
American finishers still have the advantage when it comes Americans—except for transoceanic
flights, which proved to be way more
to plating quality and consistency. educational that one would expect as
China Expert” and the “Ranting I listened to one executive or engi-

I n my 10-plus years of living in and

commuting to China, I have heard
a number of individuals who are
The Pseudo China Expert. Normally
this is an individual who has spent a
neer after another speak of their
woes about China, their millions of
dollars lost, their throwing in the
sometimes well-meaning and other protracted time, often one year con- towel, etc.
times harshly critical of China’s role, secutively in-country, or an individ- Most of my time was spent study-
intent, and potential in the global ual who has traveled there 10 to 40 ing the Chinese business model,
marketplace, as well as the impact times for a several days each trip. working directly and, more impor-
on the metal finishing industry. As These individuals have certainly tantly, indirectly, to gain their
finishing professionals, we have a been in China and eaten some understanding and strategies of
slight upper hand in this battle Chinese food—that is, if they could success, which has proven to be a
(which I will identify later in this not find a burger joint or a pizza game of tiger chess or, at the very
article) that requires a “thinking place—but they do not get to know least, black widow copulation (the
out-of-the-box” mentality to find China and its never-ending yet sub- female often eats her partner upon
that proverbial rainbow and possibly tle nuances of life and business. consummation).
“save a sinking ship.” The Ranting Conservative. As you My visit last fall to [SFCHINA],
There are two major schools of begin reading an article from one of which also entailed a consulting
thought on the United States’ view these individuals, you hear of the detour for a Chinese plating chemi-
of China and its impact on our terrible things that China is doing, cal supplier, continues to confirm to
industry and our future: the “Pseudo how they compete unfairly, and how me our upper hand in the Chinese
plating industry, with that “upper
hand” being knowledge, expertise,
and experience in quality.
I repeatedly hear the plating pro-
fessional who complains of China’s
unfair advantage. One such com-
plaint came from a U.S. plant losing
work to China because of cheaper
labor. However, as it turns out, the
Chinese plant was shortcutting the
process by buffing out the raw metal
and applying a thinner deposit to
achieve the required “look,” which
didn’t actually meet the require-
ment, but they got the work never-
theless. Chinese labor is much
cheaper than metal.
The universal complaint for inter-
national plants in China is “quality”
or, specifically, the lack thereof. The

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 37

salespeople having to make excuses for quality finishing, and that is
driving force is often price and, as we for the varying “look.” another gap not yet filled.
all know, plating is the orphan child The gold mine potential for adven- Being one of the many “first kids
of any plant or manufacturing turous platers watching their work on the block” to address China’s
process. It’s out-of-sight, out-of- go overseas is step up to the plate great need for quality finishing will
mind relevance in the scheme of and offer solutions. Of course, you help you garner the profit you are
things only hide issues, but when can’t do that from your comfy office missing today and will position you
poor finishing practices come to the chair. However, plants strategically for the next generation. So, guys,
surface (no pun intended), the world placed in China can offer quality the we’re platers, let’s go where the parts
comes to an end. ex-pat companies are clamoring for. need plating.
Based on my experience visiting Another approach would be to offer I was talking to a U.S. bottling
plants in China, the glaring truth is to run plating departments in man- middle manager a few years back
they are clueless as to how to actually ufacturing facilities on a contract about the changing times in busi-
run their plating lines and achieve basis. Lastly, talk with U.S. compa- ness. He told me, “We tell our people
normal and consistent quality. There nies that purchase plated parts from that business isn’t what it used to be,
is not enough space in this article to China and have your services built and anyone not willing to live with
expound on even one day’s trek into their purchase agreement. One constant change can hit the door or
through factories and the managers’ good U.S. tech and a handful of local get fired because it’s never going to
ignorance of the processes. You workers could maintain any plant. be the same.” This applies to our
might ask how they continue to plate You could even partner with your industry, too. We are the final stage
and sell their services! Well, you put favorite plating chemical manufac- of manufacturing, for the most part.
in the tanks and it comes out shiny. turer to use their products exclusive- And those of us with experience are a
Everyone agrees it is shiny, so we can ly for a monthly percentage. The disappearing breed, but we still have
sell it. That’s it, in a nutshell. Chinese plant would be paying a lot to have parts to plate.
I do not want to sound derogato- more for their plating, but the U.S. Bottom line: China is going to get
ry toward the Chinese, because I company would (theoretically) insist more and more of our parts and
know them to be a very capable peo- on it for quality’s sake, and it would eventually figure out how to plate—
ple. However, they are driven—just be part of their quote. I promise you just not anytime soon.
like us—to put out fires and ignore the U.S. companies are often dis-
what doesn’t seem to matter. To gusted enough with the poor quality
them, shiny is good and they only to insist on such a concept. If you are
deal with plating thickness, deposit losing parts to China, follow the
stress, etc., when it comes to light. parts and plate them there. BIO
Then they have to figure out how to I was in such a China plant where Bob Adams started in the plating industry
even check for those things. I am the U.S. quality inspector had just in the 1980s, managing and troubleshoot-
not being facetious; of course, left, and I heard stories of how much ing plating plants. He has more than 11
someone somewhere knows how to he yelled at them. They said he was years experience in systems design, plating
identify these things, but to have beside himself with anger. I have a management, system analysis, quality
technicians in every plant in China strong feeling he would love to hear control auditing, systems troubleshooting,
is an impossibility because many from a trusted U.S. plater willing to analytical lab design and operations, per-
“real plating techs” don’t yet exist. contract with that plant to run their sonnel training, and deposition technical
What this means to metal finishing plating department. A higher plat- support. He also has a working knowledge
professionals willing to think out of ing cost to the producer of the of ISO 9000, 5-S, and SixSigma systems,
their comfort zone is a very unique Chinese-manufactured part would as well as international experience.
opportunity. I have been offered jobs still be a savings, plus there would be Adams moved to China with his family
in China just to clean up plants and a usable part. in the late 1990s to research the Chinese
get them to be consistent. One west- That being said, the Chinese con- business model and do custom manufac-
ern company’s plating plant in China sumer market is growing fast and turing. Since that time he has commuted
couldn’t get the color of their zinc- quality offerings haven’t been an from the U.S. to China, primarily in a
plated parts to have even a close issue, as no one had the money to consulting capacity.
resemblance of consistency. That’s all pay for them. (“Things, they are a Adams is based in Iowa and has a net-
they were asking for—just make the changing.”) I read an article about work of Chinese professionals working
parts look the same. There were four one new white-collar professional in with him throughout China. He plans to
parts on a completed unit and they Beijing who had a small car for her relocate to China in the near future per-
looked like they were plated with dif- daily commute but a Hummer for manently.
ferent materials. The executive I was her weekend four-wheeler club. For more information on Adams,
talking with said he was tired of his Little by little there will be a demand please visit www.cjnadams.com.

38 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

Who is Ultimately Responsible also maintain a sense of decorum, or
panache, that the street vendor
for Quality Control? could never hope to emulate. The
chefs’ and managers set the style and
demand that the staff maintain it

W e have all heard the expres-

sion, “Quality is everyone’s
job.” That is a bit like saying every-
must feel obliged to conform to
those standards. When the produc-
er company has lower standards
without exception.
The fact is that company leaders
set the standard for quality for their
one is responsible for raising the than the customer, the customer subordinates regardless of what the
children. If mom or dad, or uncles, will take their business elsewhere. business is. The workforce and staff
aunts older siblings or grandparents Quality cannot be someone else’s spend a lot of time, thought, and
disagrees as to what the standards of responsibility, least of all quality of energy trying to discern what will
behavior ought to be, the children the product or service the business please (or displease) their leaders. If
will, in all likelihood, establish their offered to their customers. It is we know anything about the boss,
own. The result can be chaos, with quite simple: someone has to be we have a very good idea of what he
maybe a child or two winding up in responsible, or there is no way to or she will tolerate;. it is fundamen-
trouble with those outside the fami- assure that the customer gets what tal. The product or service reflects
ly, like the school or even the police. he/she is asking for. company management. If you are
One or more of the parents must Understand that when I mention the leader—the boss—and the prod-
establish the standards and everyone quality, I am not talking about uct have problems, it is your fault.
must agree to those standards. goodness; that is another issue There are bosses, under-bosses,
If we think about quality in this entirely. While the goodness stan- and under-under-bosses in the man-
same way, the result multiple stan- dard also flows from the boss, it is agement chain. Everybody has a boss,
dards may be that quality is no one’s not the subject of this column. I am even the CEO. The CEO reports to
job. Think about how many times not writing about whether a product the board of directors, which reports
you may have driven down the street, or service that meets one of the defi- to the stockholders. The CEO proba-
or walked along a path in the park. nitions for quality as put forth by bly has several direct subordinates
Out there on the grass is some litter. the American Society for Quality who march to his or her beat.
We all want to live in a clean envi- (ASQ): free of defects, or zero Meanwhile, John down in the
ronment, yet we pass that trash defects, or a product or service free machine shop probably knows that
because we convince ourselves that of deficiencies. there is a CEO and may even know
“someone else” will pick it up. I live his or her name. However, John’s
in a semi-rural area and not a day SETTING A STANDARD salary, working hours, and other ben-
goes by without some passing Think for a moment about the best efits come from Daniel—John’s
motorist throwing trash on my front restaurant you may have ever visited, supervisor. John does not see the
lawn: cigarette wrappers, beer cases, and think about a “greasy spoon” at CEO as his leader. Daniel is the only
soda cans, etc. the other end of the spectrum. In both leader that John thinks about and
If everyone agrees that they want a cases, the employees provide the food tries to please. Although the CEO
pristine environment, why would and services that is acceptable to the may share the responsibility for qual-
some of those people toss trash out boss. You would not go to Longman ity with Daniel and John, the CEO’s
of a car window? Quality standards & Eagle in Chicago, Bennan’s in New portion does not get any smaller.
are like that—someone must estab- Orleans or Uchiko in Austin, Texas, Actually, even though Daniel shares
lish rules and ensure that others and accept the same food or service the responsibility with John, Daniel’s
abide by them. that you might accept from a street portion does not get smaller, either.
The boss, however, cannot afford vendor on the Boardwalk in Atlanta. Responsibility is a unique con-
to think that anything be left to You would expect, and receive, some- cept that can only reside within the
others to decide what is acceptable. thing much better. individual. President Harry Truman
The customer, in most cases, estab- These famous restaurants offer said it in simple terms: “The buck
lishes standards of their own. When not only food and service well above stops here.” You may think you
management accepts an order, they that of the street vendor, but they have delegated it, but it is still with

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 39

qualitycontrol not understand that he or she is responsible for quality.
This type of manager screams, “How the hell did that get
you. You may share it with others but your portion is in out?” when the customer complains.
no way diminished. Some managers many deny it, but If a team of people produces something, whose fault is
they cannot divest themselves of it. Even if you do not it if the quality is poor? After all, a tester’s job is, ostensi-
recognize it or admit its presence, you cannot escape it. bly, to find defects in a product. A poor quality product
As the boss, the responsibility is rightfully yours—no must be the result of the testers not doing well enough,
evasion or ignorance or passing the blame can shift the right? Tests, or inspector, teams are also called “Quality
burden to someone else. Assurance” teams. (Think about that.) Is there anything
That is a powerful thought. All leaders should have that that the inspectors or testers produce which results in
message carved into their desktop. The CEO shares the making the quality low? The obvious answer is nothing.
responsibility for quality with the rest of the leaders in the Every other individual involved in the project is responsi-
organization, right on down to John’s boss. Joe, of course, ble for the quality, including designers, developers, testers
is responsible for doing his job right using the process that and managers. By discovering a defect, a tester is merely
was given to him. If the process, or John, is incapable of highlighting a risk, saying that a problem exists. This is
meeting the requirement, Tom is responsible for correct- exactly what these people are supposed to be doing.
ing the situation, or going back to those who designed and If the process is not at fault, and defective pieces are
approved the process to make it better. If Daniel does not produced, is it the fault of the inspector who finds them,
do his job correctly, and a defective product gets out, and or is it the fault of the manufacturing people who pro-
he and the CEO must share the responsibility. duce the defective parts?
Unfortunately, many members of management (at all The worst attitude a manufacturer can have is one that
levels) do not seem to understand their responsibly when says, ‘That is good enough.” The inspector’s job to present
it comes to quality. I cannot tell you the number of times the risk, rather than to be the judge of how much risk is
I have heard a plant manager blame “those people,” acceptable.
meaning the workers, for rotten quality. That type of I once turned down a very promising, and lucrative,
manager does not understand how quality happens, does position when I found thousands of products in the ware-
house with red tags, an indication of non-conformance.
There were several engineers going through the shipping
containers and signing off on the red tags. One of the
engineers told me that, this was the only way to meet their
shipping quota. In all likelihood, they knew their cus-
tomer would reject the parts, but there was a slim chance
they would not.
I believe that this company was looking for a scapegoat,
pare someone to blame for poor quality, not a quality director.
I think that one implication of this is that testers need
to document all the defects they find. Only keeping a
record the “serious” non-conforming product do they
for finishing with Aero-Green
Aero Grreen Specialty Cleaners. point out the magnitude of production’s problems. They
Manufactured by Hi-Lite Solutions, Inc. are not only presenting the risk, but making a decision
about what they perceive the risk to be. Another impor-
4110 PPaint
aint Prep Cleaner tant implication is that it’s not the tester’s fault when
AC -10 Rust Remover and Metal Prep
AC-10 everything breaks six months down the line—it was always
broken. True, more testing might have found more
4175 Ink and Coating Remover
defects, but eventually management decides to ship the
4130 High-Pressure Cleaner Degreaser product as is or not. Shipping sub-standard product is
4160 P Washer
arts W asher Degreaser always a calculated risk.

Leslie W. Flott, Ph.B., CQE, ASQ Fellow, is certified as an IDEM
Wastewater Treatment Operator and Indiana Wastewater
‡,PSURYHFRDWLQJDGKHVLRQFRVWHIIHFWLYH Treatment Operator. He received his BS in Chemistry from
Northwestern University and his Masters Degree in materials
BETTER FINISH™ engineering from Notre Dame University. Most recently, Flott
served as the environmental program director and instructor at
WWW.HI-LITESOLUTIONS.COM Ivy Tech Community College. Prior to that, he was the health,
environmental, and safety manager at Wayne Metal Protection
www.metalfinishing.com/advertisers Company.

40 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

To Be—Or Not to Be—In Business local U.S. market.
2. Sell your current product (or
process) beyond your current
• A continuing lack of profits and
To be. Arguments for staying in busi- geographical area. Specifically,
resultant late payments is causing
ness, whether an owner or manager, for a job shop, stop being stuck
a problem with suppliers.
are virtually identical: in the mud of “same old.”
• Bankruptcy of your company is
3. Invent or buy others inven-
• We are not profitable but are imminent, because a significant
tions, whether process or prod-
improving. improvement in cash flow cannot
uct. Be prepared to pay a royalty
• The transition from red to black is be realistically forecast.
if necessary.
imminent. • Competitors are not interested in
4. Still have a sizable financial
• We are not profitable but will be, mergers despite their similar lack
reserve and/or bank credit? Buy
because our competitors have of profits.
another company having a sal-
either gone out of business or are • Being close to retirement age
able technology you understand.
in the process of going out of (now reluctantly reduced)
5. Scariest of all for “stuck in the
business. provides an incentive to take cash
mud” like this author/consul-
• General economic conditions are reserves and other assets before
tant, be prepared to travel within
improving, and we should increase they are exhausted and
the growth international mar-
in volume with resultant Shudder. RETIRE!
kets, e.g., China, India, and Brazil
profitability. • If complete retirement is not
(yes, Brazil), where knowledge of
• We are just about break-even as a feasible, swallow your pride and
Portuguese is helpful, but not
result of tolerable (but find work elsewhere. (OK, so you
unpleasant) decreases in salaries, will no longer be the BOSS or CEO.)
6. For job shops: If your company
hourly wages and benefits. If • If you still have cash reserves and
has depended upon manufactur-
business doesn’t decrease further available credit, create a new
ers that have been made obsolete
we can get by indefinitely. (How business based on your
by foreign sources, become a
long is indefinitely?) management experience, technical
manufacturer of a product that is
• Business will improve–it always knowledge, hobbies and/or other
based upon specialty finishing
has. interests. Agreed, this is not an
• China has acquired most of our easy task.
7. Buy a small manufacturer, or
domestic manufacturing, reducing • Shut it down and/or let the
distributor, marketing on an
our remaining sales volume and employees buy and run it.
international basis.
profits to marginal levels. But, • Go to work for a competitor!
8. (Pardon the plug): Retain a
since their wages are increasing, it • Retire at an earlier age (58-60)
consultant to suggest and help
should cause an increase in their than anticipated: (65 or never).
build a “new” or more diversified
artificially low prices, making U.S. Utilize your full or a portion of
business. Or...
pricing more attractive. So...we your time, e.g. golf, fishing,
should get back some of the painting and/or reading. • Improve profits by developing
business. Alternatives to business termina- new processes or products.
• Some offshore competitors are tion or retirement: • Merge with other entities to
shipping an increasing amount of reduce costs by eliminating
defective parts, resulting in time- 1.Build a new business by diversi- competition.
consuming delivery delays and net fication. Guess what? Low-cost
cost increases. Consequently, U.S. commercial non-technical busi- Above all, just don’t sit there using
pricing becomes more attractive. ness has declined drastically due up all your cash reserves and credit.
to foreign competition. You will go bankrupt or broke!
Not to be. Arguments for terminat- So...grow and survive by diversify-
ing the business and initiating possi- ing into high-level technology Continued on page 44
ble personal alternatives: and market beyond your current

41 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com


PRETREATMENT SOLUTIONS rated oil from the belt.

Coral Eco-Treat pretreatment solutions provide an Visit www.eriez.com/hydroflow for more information.
ecological and economical alternative to traditional
phosphate metal pretreatments. Ideal for a variety of PARTS WASHERS
metal finishing applications, Coral Eco-Treat no- and Graymills’ new TL Series Liftkleen semi-automatic,
low-phosphate pretreatment products provide: immersion parts washer offers operating capabilities
and features commonly only found in high-end equip-
• Green solutions to pretreatment processes ment. The TL Series
• Energy cost savings features heavy-gauge
• Customized pretreatment solutions tailored to your metal construction
application with durable pow-
der-coated exteriors.
Most of the company’s low- or no-phosphate Coral For water-based
Eco-Treat products completely eliminate phosphate (aqueous) applica-
wastewater concerns during the metal treatment stage. tions, the TL Series
Plus, Coral Eco-Treat products are designed to operate adds stainless steel
at ambient temperatures, providing significant energy construction, an
savings. insulated tank and
Visit www.CoralEcoTreat.com for more information. thermostatically
adjustable heat up
Surface Oil Belt Skimmers from Eriez Hydroflow fea- Powerful electro-
ture a new oleophilic (oil-attracting) belt to strip sepa- pneumatic lift
rated oil from both sides of the belt. Using this method, mechanisms provide
there is no contact with a stationary scraper. This results 300 lbs. of weight
in excellent performance and long belt life. capacity with
Reducing tramp oil is a high priority for all metal- adjustable stroke
working shops. Excess tramp oil leads to smoke, mist and speed settings. Graymills PL36FB
and bacterial infestation of the metalworking fluids, Generous platform
which adversely affects surface finish and reduces tool and tank dimen-
and dimensional tolerance control. Installing the Eriez sions accommodate
Surface Oil Belt Skimmer extends the life of coolants large parts up to
and cleaners, improves machining and preserves valuable 47''L x 18''W x
tools. 24''H. The automat-
This low-maintenance oil skimmer is designed for fast, ic open-and-close lid
easy belt changing and can be equipped with a timer so and deluxe, filtered
the unit runs only when the machine is idle and the detail brush and
tramp oils have risen to the surface. The lower hang recirculation pump
roller will not fall off in the machine sump, even in tur- allow spot cleaning
bulent sump conditions. of those difficult to
Eriez Surface Oil Belt Skimmers come with a heavy- reach areas and add
duty, impedance-protected, fan-cooled drive motor with to the functionality
a hardened shaft and needle bearings, and accessible oil of this multi-use
collecting tray with a convenient drain connector. They equipment. An avail-
feature heavy-duty steel construction with industrial- able 3000GPH inter-
grade enamel paint. nal agitation pump
Eriez also offers a standard Surface Tramp Oil Belt for improved in-
Skimmer. These units have a similar “oil-attracting” belt tank cleaning, and
but use a more compact scraper blade to strip the sepa- filtration and oil Graymills TL-17

42 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

skimmer for fluid consistency round out the features of vents. It is also effective on concrete floors, and is ideal
the TL’s offerings. for use with pressure washers.
Also new from Graymills is the PL36-FB model (free- Mean Green Industrial Strength Cleaner and
board washer), the newest member of the durable, long- Degreaser is packaged in sizes to suit any industrial use,
established Handikleen line. This model complies with ranging from a 32-ounce trigger spray bottles to 55-gal-
the most common freeboard ratio/rule of 0.75 for those lon drums. Product is available from industrial distribu-
areas that need freeboard-compliant parts washers. tors or directly from the factory.
Heavy gauge metal construction with a durable pow- Visit www.meangreendegreaser.com for more informa-
der-coated exterior ensures long life. A removable work tion.
shelf puts parts at a convenient height. Simply remove
the shelf and you have a soak tank. Built-in filtration and ROBOTIC GRIT-BLASTING SYSTEM
a high flow pump deliver effective cleaning and rinsing Guyson Corporation has introduced a mid-size robot-
action through the flexible metal flush hose. ic grit-blasting machine for precision surface prepara-
For more information, visit www.graymills.com or call tion in coatings work cells. The seven-axis blast unit is
(888) 472-9645. capable of accurately and efficiently producing a speci-
fied surface roughness with a consistency not possible
Mean Green Industrial Strength Cleaner and
Degreaser has a unique blend of biodegradable deter-
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ingredients, grease and grime are quickly dissolved, while

using manual or multiple-gun blasting methods,

according to Guyson.
A six-axis robot arm, serving as a blast gun manipula-
tor, is attached to a 52 x 32-inch rotary blasting cabinet
with a servomotor-driven 24-inch turntable controlled
as a seventh axis of coordinated robotic motion. A part-
holding fixture securely attached to the table positively
locates the component, which can be oriented or rotated
at controlled speed during the programmed process
30 percent more solvents and 20 percent more surfac- For grit-blast preparation of components with
tants lift stubborn stains off all surfaces. Mean Green through-holes, vents or internal passageways, where
has doubled the amount of chelating agent for superior media could collect during processing, the spindle or
all-around performance. Mean Green Industrial turntable is designed with core air supplied to allow a
Strength Cleaner and Degreaser is ideal for a wide variety positive and adjustable flow of purge air through the
of manufacturing and metalworking applications, component during blasting. If exacting table run-out
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removal of grease and grime from machinery and manu- the machining in place using custom robot end-of-arm
factured parts, hydraulic cylinders and other heavily tooling.
soiled products without environmentally harmful sol- When the quality of surface preparation is considered

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 43

critical and validation or documentation of process con- product development process was to create a high-per-
trol is required, the blast machine designer and manu- formance, environmentally accepted material that would
facturer offers a SCADA controls package that can dis- be straightforward to operate and control,” said Bill
play, capture and record data on all blasting parameters Breault, aerospace market manager, Petroferm.
throughout each blast cycle, providing an audit trail to Email aerospace@petroferm.com for more information.
verify conformity to specifications or process work
For more information or free laboratory testing and Lechler, Inc. offers a complete line of products for clean-
application engineering evaluation, please visit ing tanks and vessels of all sizes. Included in that line are
www.guyson.com. Mini-Whirling nozzles, designed to clean smaller vessels
up to 3 ft. in diameter, such as kegs, drums, barrels, totes
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Petroferm, Inc. introduces CleanSafe 686 Aqueous movement for more effective cleaning. Models include:
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Aeroshell 500 Turbine Oil, Aeroshell 33 Grease, Ardrox openings
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pH adjusters to help monitor concentration or maintain visit www.lechlerusa.com.
cleaning effectiveness. “Our objective throughout the

Continued from page 41

For sales/marketing companies and Chinese, Indian and Southern USA. in international marketing. I have
their managers. I have addressed the (You have to get down and dirty on listed alternatives to your present
plight of manufacturers and job the ground in Texas). occupations and ownership. It is
shops affected by foreign competi- Start your own company dealing in quite possible that a change in either
tion, but neglected marketing/sales the import export area. could provide an improvement in
companies and their executives. It is For those unemployed or anticipat- your attitude and enjoyment of your
a toughie. ing unemployment: life despite a possible reduction in
The problem for these owners and income.
executives of financial struggling • While looking or planning for a
organizations is both profound and new job go to school and learn a
complex. They should consider a new communication technology,
move to companies with a future and management and/or marketing
be prepared to travel internationally skill. BIO
and/or relocate to a new U.S. location • Finally, reduce your income Bert J. Sherwood, M. S. in Ch.E., is a con-
or foreign office. and/or salary requirements. sultant who has provided business and
To accomplish the transition to technical counsel to surface finishing and
international marketing, learn the These are difficult times for U. S. manufacturing companies for 25 years.
language of the proposed area. companies, their owners, managers He can be reached at:
Specifically, at the top of the list, are and employees who are not involved sherwoodbj@aol.com

44 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

directoryarchitecturalfinishers Decorative Industrial Plating
Following is a sampling of U.S.-based fin- LA Metal Polishing
ishers and captive shops serving the Micron Metal Finishing NEBRASKA
architectural components market. Visit Meyer Metal Systems TMCO, Inc.
www.mffinishersdirectory.com, Metal Morgan O’Hare
Finishing’s online Finishers’ Directory, for Powder Parts NEW JERSEY
contact information and other resources. Reliable Plating Corp. Paramount Metal Finishing
Saporito Finishing Company
Alpha Tech Coatings C.H. Thompson Company, Inc.
Capitol Metal Finishing INDIANA Control Electropolishing
Beacon Industries Lawrence Ripak Company
ARKANSAS C&R Plating Company
PM Industries, Inc. Muncie Precision Hard Chrome NORTH CAROLINA
Protech Metal Finishing Allied Metal Finishing
CALIFORNIA Winona Powder Coating, Inc.
Black Oxide Industries, Inc. OHIO
California Electroplating KANSAS Advance Paint Technology, Ltd.
California Technical Plating Bontrager Powder Coating Architectural & Industrial Metal Finishing
Coast Plating, Inc. True Spec Finishes, LLC Burton Metal Finishing
Electroplating Specialties Imperial Metal Solutions, LLC
Gardena Specialized Processing KENTUCKY Medina Plating Corporation
Orange County Plating Co., Inc. Tri-State Plating, Inc. Plating Technology, Inc.
Precision Control Finishing Tusco Display Co.
Precision Powder Coating LOUISIANA
Processes by Martin, Inc. A-1 Powder Coating PENNSYLVANIA
Surface Finishing Technology Plating Martin Specialty Coating Great Lakes Metal Finishing
Tiodize Company, Inc. J.K. Metalworks
Valley Plating Works MICHIGAN
Valmont/George Industries Agritek Industries, Inc. SOUTH CAROLINA
Delta-Chem Technologies, Inc. CAPSCO, Inc.
COLORADO Depor Industries, Inc.
Industrialex DST Industries TEXAS
Plating Specialties Engineered Finishing Corp. 3D Powder Coating
GLW Finishing Aerotech Metal Finishing
FLORIDA Kalamazoo Metal Finishers Delta Specialty Coatings
Absolute Powder Coating Magnum Powder Coating, Inc. Dixie Electroplating
McNichols Polishing & Anodizing DuPont Industrial Coating Solutions
GEORGIA Peninsula Powder Coating Enhanced Powder Coating
Delong Equipment Co. Wolverine Plating Corp. Harrison Electropolishing
Frohn North America, Inc. Industrial Metal Finishing
NuTech Powder Coaters, LLC MINNESOTA Royalty Metal Finishing, Inc.
Performance Coatings, Inc. Granite Falls Coating & Manufacturing
Team Metal Finishing WASHINGTON
IDAHO Process Engineering Co., Inc.
Advanced Electrochemical Technology T&T Plating WISCONSIN
Crystal Finishing Systems, Inc.
ILLINOIS MISSOURI Engineered Finishing Corp.
Advanced Powder Technology Madison County Metal Polishing Hartford Finishing
Berteau Lowell Plating Works Superior Coating Professional Plating
Britt Industries, Inc. Profile Finishing Systems
CRW Finishing, Inc. MONTANA Quality Coatings, Inc.
Imperial Plating Bosco Powder Coating River City Powder Coating

Promote your company in

Metal Finishing’s NEW Finishers’ Directory!
Listings start at $19.99 per year
The Finishers’ Directory is an online resource that enables potential customers to quickly identify surface finishers based on
a range of variables, including company name, business served, finishing operations performed, and geographical location.
Get your company listed today at

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 45

1 Time $123.00,
- $117.00, 3 Times
3 Times - $120.00,
- $114.00, 6 Times
6 Times - $114.00,
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Ready Reference
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880-770-0021 Waste Treatment Systems
Your equipment source Used Equipment See your ad here
Call for the details
Polyproducts, Evaporators 212-633-3100
Bags, Cloth & Media
Anode Bags
Used Equipment
Call: 216-881-7900
Fax: 216-881-8950

Leading full line manufacturer of

metal finishing products is seeking
manufacturing representatives
throughout the USA. Please visit
our website at divinebrothers.com.
Please respond to 1-800-642-7456
ext. 255 or email at

Paint Masking Products www.metalfinishing.com

Sound Damping Products
Spray Booth Maintenance
www.rblproducts.com 212-633-3100

Nickel Solution Wanted Low pressure 60 hp steam

Will purchase excess boiler 3 years old.
semi/brights/watts nickel baths and 1,000,000 BTU's
nickel sulfate from IX recovery. E-mail: keizer.terry@gmail.com
Send analysis report with volumes to:
ewmetals@sbcglobal.net or call 616 575 9300

46 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com

AUGUST Vinyl Plastisols
Tapes & Waxes
Aug. 9–11 Military Vehicle Exhibition & Conference, Detroit, Mich. Visit
Stop-Off Lacquers
www.MilitaryVehiclesExpo.com for more information. Strippers & Reducers

Aug. 23–24 2011 “Old School Meets High Tech” Powder Coating TOLBER GOES
Workshops, East Windsor, Conn. Please visit www.itwgema.us/powdercoat- GREEN
ingworkshop for more information. LACQUERS
Miccroshield • Miccrostop
• Miccromask • Miccropeel
• Miccrotex XP-2000
Sept. 6 NESHAP Subpart 6H Training Program, sponsored by DeVilbiss, Miccrotape 3/4” • Miccrotape 1210
• Miccrotape 1220 • Miccrowax
Binks, and Community College, Toledo, Ohio. To register online, please visit
the website: www.owens.edu/workforce_cs/spray2011-flier.pdf or call (800) Black • Green • Orange • Red
466-9637, ext. 7320, for more information.

Sept. 7–9 Spray Finishing Training, sponsored by DeVilbiss, Binks, and TOLBER
Community College, Toledo, Ohio. To register online, please visit the follow- DIVISION
220 West 5th Street
ing website: www.owens.edu/workforce_cs/spray2011-brochure.pdf or call Hope, Arkansas
(800) 466-9637, ext. 7320, for more information. 870-777-3251 • Fax: 870-777-8056
E-mail: tolbermail@sbcglobal.net

Oct. 4–6 2011 North American Industrial Coating Show (NAI), Cincinnati, Promote your company in
Ohio. For more details, please visit www.thenaicoatingshow.com.
Metal Finishing’s NEW
Oct. 5–7 Third Annual Palmetto Technical Conference, Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Finishers’ Directory!
For more information, please visit www.nasf.org.
Listings start at
Oct. 25–27 parts2Clean, Stuttgart, Germany. For more details, please visit
$19.99 per year
The Finishers’ Directory is an online
Oct. 25–26 “Old School Meets High Tech” Powder Coating Workshops, resource that enables potential
Tampa, Fla. For more information, please visit www.itwgema.us/powdercoat-
customers to quickly identify surface
finishers based on a range of

variables, including company name,

Nov. 4 2011 New England Surface Finishing Regional, Hyannis Resort & business served, finishing
Conference Center, Hyannis, Mass. For more information, please call (413) operations performed, and
788-7375, ext. 310.
geographical location.

Nov. 14–17 CCAI Finishing Pavilion & Conference at FABTECH, Chicago,

Ill. Please visit www.fabtechexpo.com
Get your company listed
for more information.
today at
Nov. 23–25 SFCHINA 2011. For more information, please visit www.sfchi-

www.metalfinishing.com July/August 2011 I metalfinishing I 47

index July/August 2011
AmeriChem Engineering Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46
MacDermid . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5
b Matchless Metal Polish . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .36
Metalline . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46
Bass Mechanical . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29 Met-Chem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46
Miraclean Equipment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .35
c M.W. Watermark, LLC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46

Coral Chemical Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9

Cornerstone Systems, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18
NAI Coating Show . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1
Divine Brothers Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46
RBL Products . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46
e Reliant Aluminum Products . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23
Reliant Specialty Equipment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46
EW Metals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46
f SFCHINA 2011 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .IFC
Fischer Technology, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6 Shaoxing CTN Electronics Co., Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46

h t
Haviland Products Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7 Tolber/Pyramid Plastics, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .47
Hi-Lite Markings, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40
i Waste Treatment Equipment Specialties . . . . . . . . . . . .46
Industrial Waste Water Services LLC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21



On site training for management and supervision on:
• Leadership • Supervisory Responsibilities &Functions, • Discipline • Problem Solving
• Motivation • Personal Time Management • Innovation & Creativity • Training Employees

AND The above curriculum for do-it- yourself company trainers.
Bert J. Sherwood, Pres.
Sherwood Business Mgt. Corp. • Los Angeles, CA 90024
Information- email:

48 I metalfinishing I July/August 2011 www.metalfinishing.com
Metal Finishing is currently seeking technical papers and articles for the
remaining 2011 editions. Issue themes and projects are as follows:
OCTOBER 2012 Organic Finishing
(Testing & Control) Guidebook
Content ranges from troubleshooting Cleaning & Pretreatment
plating bath chemistries and processes, Coating Materials
to monitoring system controls, to Application Methods
testing for coating thickness, Paint & Powder Coating
integrity and defects. Systems/Equipment
Thickness Testing
NOVEMBER/DECEMBER Stripping Organic Coatings
(Finishing Equipment + Plant
Issue covers the many plant
upgrade/retrofit options available for
finishers offering electroplating or
coating services. Bonus Coverage:
Abrasive blasting equipment, mass
finishing media, and tumbling.

Please submit abstracts or

deadline inquiries to
Reginald Tucker, editor, at
or call (212) 633-3885.
Go on: Take it…
For more than 100 years, Metal Finishing has been keeping readers
up to date on the technical aspects of both electroplating and
organic finishing processes, while providing news and perspectives
that shape the surface finishing industry.

Subscribe today at