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Frank Turley

tallow

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The thread on sad irons turned into a lard and cookies thread. It reminded me of a use for tallow that my Mexican mentor, Victor Vera, shared with me. He said that it made a very good lubricant when making threads with taps and dies. Victor used the Spanish name, "sebo" for tallow.

Edited by Frank Turley
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Tallow was always used by machinists (and some still use it) as a lubricant on the dead center of the lathe, and in cutting and threading operations. As long as you don't overdo it, you don't get everything coated in it....!

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Yes, tallow and lard oils were once the lubricants of choice for machinists. The problem is, the oils can go rancid which is pretty nasty.  It gets really bad on machines which have a sump and recirculating coolant/lubes--when you have the wrong stuff in there it's one of the worst jobs in the world to clean out the scum and stank and blooms of nasty growing stuff.  

It can even be a problem with modern coolants and lubes---and the CNC guys have long discussions about ways to kill/avoid the stink.

Cleaning sumps is where the greenhorn pays his dues before getting to work on real stuff.

But....I really do miss the old fast food french fries which had tallow in the oil they were fried in at the factory.  MUCH better than the modern vegetable oils.  It wasn't the vegetarians who killed tallow in fry oil, it was mad cow disease:  When Japan and other foreign countries banned ALL beef products in the last mad cow scare, there were millions of pounds of tallow-fried french fries en-route to those countries that had to be sent back, most being destroyed at a huge cost to the french fry producers.  They decided it wasn't worth the risk and to just stick with veggie oils (plus some other trends that made them give in).

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Kozzy,

   I remember resembling your greenhorn remark on new years day 1988.  Nothing like cleaning out a Doall saw sump to impress on a young man that the working world doesn't care if you stayed out all night, you still have to go to work in the morning!  I would have fired me, but I think the foreman had more fun watching me almost gag to death!

 

Russell

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The thread on sad irons turned into a lard and cookies thread. It reminded me of a use for tallow that my Mexican mentor, Victor Vera, shared with me. He said that it made a very good lubricant when making threads with taps and dies. Victor used the Spanish name, "sebo" for tallow.

Or "manteca" - a word used in Texas for lard.  I used to keep vegetable shortening (Cisco) in a can for the same purpose - worked well for general hand tapping.

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Word is that the FDA is plning to faze out most hydrolized vegtable oils in the next 5 years, as the reserch evidence that it is much worse than animal fats is prety rock solid. 

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This video is about suet/tallow

www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypRsO9KdxXk&index=2&list=PL4e4wpjna1vylyk-nUSIPmHrNnPZ1ivPU

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