Orthodontics & craniofacial research vol:8 issue:2 pages:96-105
OBJECTIVES: To investigate the in vitro coefficient of friction of stainless steel arch wire-bracket combinations under fretting contact test conditions performed in air and in different aqueous solutions, like Ringer solution, Ringer with addition of a buffer, Ringer with addition of glucose, and Coca Cola. METHODS: The fretting test set-up used allowed to control on-line the contact configuration and the positioning of the contacting parts. A specific positioning method was used to achieve a parallel alignment of arch wire and bracket slot. The effect of arch wire size, roughness, and test environment were investigated. RESULTS: It was found that the aqueous solutions act as a lubricant compared to air. Friction was affected by the arch wire width while the roughness was found to have a limited effect. Stainless steel 0.018'' x 0.025'' arch wires exhibited higher frictional forces than stainless steel 0.017'' x 0.025'' arch wires on sliding against stainless steel 0.018'' x 0.025'' brackets in the selected test environments when tested under identical fretting test conditions. The wear damage on the arch wire after these in-vitro fretting tests was investigated. It revealed that these in-vitro tests are governed by a competition between oxidational wear and abrasive wear taking place at contact areas between brackets and arch wires. CONCLUSIONS: For all aqueous solutions a lower coefficient of friction was found compared to tests performed in ambient air.