An experimental and analytical study has been carried out to discover the factors which determine the friction and wear coefficients of composites consisting of a hard metal matrix and a softer filler. To be effective the filler should have a lower metallurgical compatibility than the matrix against the other sliding surface. The concentration of the filler should be at least a few percent so that it can be smeared out over the matrix surface, and there is an upper limit to filler concentration associated with loss of bulk strength of the composite. A simple calculation suggests that large particles of filler material are better than fine particles with 20 micrometer particles being the smallest that are fully effective.

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