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Wire Drawing Process

Wire Drawing A to Z - Bonderite®

Wire drawing and manufacturing is a complex, multi-step industry requiring a range of chemical and mechanical processes.  The Bonderite® product family has engineered solutions for many of the chemical needs throughout the process — pre-cleaning, lubricating and more.  This application article will help highlight how and why Bonderite® products are the ideal solution for wire drawing.

Pre-Treatment and Cleaning

Alkaline Cleaning
To prepare rod surfaces for drawing, an immersion or spray cleaning process step is critical in optimizing efficiency and consistency in final production. Bonderite® has a range of alkaline cleaners to remove a variety of soils and lubricants prior to drawing the metal.

Acid Pickling

There are a variety of mechanical and chemical processes to remove scale and rust from the rod surface.  There are several powerful Bonderite® Acid Inhibitors that can be used in a pickling process step.  These products minimize attacks on base metal, minimize pitting and reduce the fuming experienced in pickle baths.


It is common to see a phosphate treatment step to provide additional surface protection and adhered coating to protect tool & die life.  There are several Bonderite® grades with targeted solutions for a range of phosphating operational requirements.   A proper phosphate coating is a powerful solution that can provide:
  • Increased Overall Metal Flow 
  • Reduced Metal-on-Metal Friction
  • Improved Secondary Corrosion Protection 
  • Extended Tool/Die Life 
  • Faster Drawing Speeds & Deeper Surface Draws
*Operating time will vary by particular application process (Bath, Strand, Tubing, Extrusion, etc.) Inquire for more information


Following a phosphate treatment, it is recommended to run the metal through a neutralization process.  Not only does this operation neutralize any leftover acidic phosphate, it also raises the metal temperature for the drawing step, provides additional corrosion protection & prevents drag-in for acidic metal. The specialty solutions for Bonderite® for neutralization are below.

Lubrication - Reactive & Non-Reactive

When it comes to wire drawing operations there are two types of lubricants, reactive & non-reactive. Both provide surface protection from metal-on-metal contact and extend the die life cycle. Reactive lubricants are high-purity stearate soaps that react with the formed crystals to absorb into phosphated surface and delivers excellent adhesion and film strength. Non-reactive lubricants provide easier use, control and longer bath life but do not adhere as strongly. The recommended Bonderite® lubricants are listed below.

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