Process Matters in Solving Critical Parts Cleaning Issues

Stewart Holloway, a Senior Account Manager at Hubbard-Hall, recently worked on a project with a manufacturer of military components to resolve a critical issue with aluminum tubes used in weaponry. The manufacturer faced a potential loss of over $1 million in inventory due to a staining problem on the tubes after heat treatment and chem-filming. Hubbard-Hall’s cleaning team identified and addressed several process issues contributing to the staining problem.

The defense contractor had held over 400 tubes due to the staining issue, representing 40% of the manufacturer’s revenue. The manufacturer originally believed the issue was related to how the tubes were cleaned in an ultrasonic cleaning process. Hubbard-Hall was asked to establish a cleaning process to eliminate the staining and develop an etch process to remove stains from the 400 held parts.

The cleaning team inspected the manufacturing process and identified several process issues contributing to the staining. They discovered that the draw lube used in the extrusion process contained an amine that caused surface attacks on the tubes. To minimize exposure, they recommended wiping excess lube after each draw and moving the tubes quickly to the cleaning stage.

Download the case study to learn more about the outcome and results of the processes implemented by Hubbard-Hall in this situation. 


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Excerpt: Hubbard-Hall’s cleaning team resolved a $1 million inventory issue for a defense manufacturer by addressing process issues, not just cleaning chemistry. Despite not winning the product sale, their expertise led to the acceptance of 400 tubes, demonstrating a commitment to customer satisfaction and building confidence for future collaboration.

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