Metal Mates - Innovative Metalforming Lubricants and Fluids

Metal Mates - Innovative Metalforming Lubricants and Fluids

About Us

Metal Mates was formed in 1978 when industrial chemist August Clarence Karbum "Clarence" invented an invert emulsion lubricant, 123 Lubricant, in collaboration with General Motors to solve the problem of rusting on car roof panels. From there the company has grown in that practical, problem solving spirit and the initial technology Clarence employed to create 123 Lubricant has been expanded to address the ever changing needs of the stamping industry.

In 2005 ITW Fluids North America, a division of Fortune 200 company Illinois Tool Works, Inc. (ITW), acquired Metal Mates Inc. The company’s manufacturing was moved from Waterford, Michigan to the ITW Fluids ISO 9001:2008 certified plant in DeWitt, Iowa. Since becoming a part of ITW, Metal Mates has continued to focus on technical expertise in providing innovative products with personal service.


About ITW Fluids North America

ITW Fluids North America, a division of Illinois Tool Works Inc. (ITW), is an industry leader in the development and production of scientifically advanced fluid products for the metalworking industry. Our products include eco-friendly lubricants & tapping fluids, cutting & grinding fluids, rust preventatives, stamping lubricants, aqueous cleaners, coolant maintenance equipment and minimum quantity lubrication systems.

We endeavor to uphold the Guiding Principles of ITW through constant focus on advancements in production, safety and service.  By staying on the forefront of industrial and technical developments we can offer our customers innovative products that improve their productivity and profitability, all while maintaining the highest levels of customer support.

August Clarence Karbum

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"In the old world, a little lubricant was good and a lot was better. That isn’t the case anymore."

Tony, Engineering Manager