View Full Version : Small Oil Ports on Lathe/Help

07-16-2013, 09:51 AM
Hey Guys,

I was preparing to oil my lathe via numerous “oil ports” (something I haven’t done in a long time) and several ports didn’t seem to accept oil. Thinking the small balls had gotten stuck over time, I used a small probe to depress one of the balls. The ball depressed very easily and then disappeared deep into hiding having never returned. I tried using a strong magnet to urge the ball from hiding but this was to no avail.

Taking several close-up images to demonstrate what I meant by “oil ports”, during post processing and enlargement of the image with the damaged oil port, the second image revealed the spring (and possibly the ball located on the left side of the spring) sideways in the hole. I cannot see this using strong light and strong surgical loupes but I can certainly see the spring in the macro image (and possibly the steel ball).

1. So what must I do to dislodge and reposition the ball and spring? Is there a trick to this?

The first image demonstrates a functioning “oil port” (whatever it’s called), and the second image shows the vacant hole with the spring sideways.

2. Can these oil ports be easily removed without damage to the oil port? If so, explain how this can be done.

3. If it must be removed and the oil port becomes damaged, where can another oil port be purchased in the US?

Any help rehabilitating this situation would be greatly appreciated.


http://i234.photobucket.com/albums/ee38/hwingo_2007/OilPort_zps64958411.jpg (http://s234.photobucket.com/user/hwingo_2007/media/OilPort_zps64958411.jpg.html)

07-16-2013, 10:05 AM
Same thing happened to me last week. One of the balls fell down, I can get it to come up with a magnet but it won't stay in place. I hate these oil ports. what can be done?

J Tiers
07-16-2013, 10:38 AM
Pull the oil port out, throw it away, and get a Gits oiler to replace it. McMaster or MSC should have them.

You may need to re-size the hole, it is probably metric, and the Gits oilers are, in general, not.

If a direct-in link works for McMaster, here it is....

You want the drive-in ball type, partway down the page


07-16-2013, 10:43 AM
Most likely they're toast now. You'll probably destroy them by removing them as most are pressed in and the easiest way to remove them is by inserting a screw into the hole and prying them out.
Good thing though is that they are cheap and easy to replace.
Go to a well stocked industrial supply house and ask for Gitts ball oilers. Maybe grab a few spares while you're at it.

JT types faster than me, oh and look at my link as they are available in metric.

07-16-2013, 11:03 AM
Enco (http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INPDFF?PMPAGE=966&PARTPG=INLMK3&PMITEM=891-4786) has them, too.


07-16-2013, 12:00 PM
Yea I had that happen on my lathe. I just put some clear tape overtop the hole and peel it back when I need to oil. (Tape keeps the swaff out)

07-16-2013, 12:20 PM
Try this link, it gives all the dimensions and cutaway drawings.

07-16-2013, 01:58 PM
Well, I believe we've found the "name" of the part and where to purchase prior to attempting removal. Should the part become damaged (and I am almost certain it will), having one on hand would be wise. The problem is, knowing the correct size. Outside dia of flange is easy to discern but length of gits and diameter of hole is likely to be a problem. It would be nice if I could get the gits out without distorting the gits dia or length of gits.


07-16-2013, 02:07 PM
They come out pretty easy Harold. You should be able to remove it, measure it, and reinstall it while you order or pick up the new ones.
Inserting the screw usually distorts the oil hole but the body should remain relatively untouched.

07-16-2013, 04:14 PM
Well, I got it out but not without some difficulty. The spring and ball stayed in the hole. Reclaiming the spring from within the hole was no big problem but getting that ball out of the hole took some doing.

I do not have metric instruments nor drills. The lathe is metric throughout. It's a PM1236. The following measurments were collected using inches as the standard and converted to metric.

Dia of flange is .240" which converts to 6.096mm
Overall length is .230" which converts to 5.842mm
Body Dia is .234" which converts to 5.96mm

Hole size, from whence the gits emerged is slightly larger than .228" which converts to 5.791mm. This is the closest I could come to a "slip fit" while feeling my way through the drill set. I would describe this as a slightly loose slip fit and could stand to be a couple more thousandth greater in dia before it would be a comfortable, acceptable slip fit.

So, from the chart listed at the gits manf site, nothing seems to fit! What now?


http://i234.photobucket.com/albums/ee38/hwingo_2007/OilPort2_zps6e154b0c.jpg (http://s234.photobucket.com/user/hwingo_2007/media/OilPort2_zps6e154b0c.jpg.html)

07-16-2013, 06:09 PM
Needless to say I can't measure the diameter of the holes for my oilers but it appears your oiler size is the same as what I have.
The illustration on the Gits site does not show the degree of taper that the oilers truly have. While they show just a very minor transition or bevel between the body and the bottom of the oiler, the actual taper is much greater.

The photo below is of the Gits 6127-1 oiler of which I have an additional 6 spares.
They are quite malleable and conform to the bore of the holes easily. I checked these ones at .238"-.239" just under the rim. So while at first glance it may seem tight assuming your bore is .238+", they are not solid so they do press in relatively easy. Just a light tap with a small brass hammer.

If you like, PM me your address and I'll stick one in the mail for you tomorrow.


07-16-2013, 06:47 PM
Just looking at my drill chart I see that a 15/64" drill = .2344" if your holes are indeed too small. The next non metric size is a letter B drill but that works out to .238" which would be too big.

07-16-2013, 10:08 PM

The drill I chose, which fit the existing hole best, was 0.228" dia. Having stated this, the 0.288" drill is a wee bit too small. If the drill was 0.300" dia then I think that size would be a better "guess" for the existing hole size. Sorry for the confusion.


PS: A PM is soon to follow. Have a few more things to do before writing the PM.:)

07-17-2013, 05:06 AM
kind of a side note but i found a great little oiler for these at the local hardware store.

called "Goldenrod" the tip is just right for sealing up and delivering a good pump.

the body is plastic, and it was cheap but it works really well.

07-17-2013, 07:09 AM
Sounds like you need a 1/4 Gits, pack a hand reamer with grease and use it to enlarge the hole, the grease should catch the swarf. Clean it as well as you can and tap in the gits.