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Anyone know about Shell Alvania 7 grease?

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  • Anyone know about Shell Alvania 7 grease?

    I need to repack some precision spindle bearings and the manufacturer is specifying Shell "Alvania 7" as the appropriate grease. I can't find any information on the net of Alvania 7 even being mentioned, never mind specs, so presume it's been superseded, possibly for a while. There are other Alvania greases in Shell's range, but of course each has their own unique properties and I have no idea what "7's" were. I've emailed Shell, but not sure if they'll get back to me. Has anyone here heard of Alvania 7 and can possibly tell me more about what it was replaced with. Obviously if doesn't need to be Shell brand, but I don't want to screw up these bearings as they'll be hideously expensive to replace, so respectfully ask for no wild guesses and "she'll be right's"

    Pete

  • #2
    Originally posted by PeteF
    I need to repack some precision spindle bearings and the manufacturer is specifying Shell "Alvania 7" as the appropriate grease. I can't find any information on the net of Alvania 7 even being mentioned, never mind specs, so presume it's been superseded, possibly for a while.
    The Alvania series is Shell's standard EP bearing grease. The '7' doesn't sound right -- the number in the series is the NGLI (viscosity) rating. So Shell Avania 00 is the consistency of snot, Alvania 2 is your typical peanut butter consistency wheel bearing grease.

    I think NGLI ratings only go up to 3. 7 would be rock solid
    "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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    • #3
      I'll have to agree with what Lazlo said as well.
      I have seen typos where a 7 was used instead of the intended 2.

      What is the manufacturer currently recommending?

      What do other manufactures making similar equipment use and recommend?
      Home, down in the valley behind the Red Angus
      Bad Decisions Make Good Stories​

      Location: British Columbia

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      • #4
        Actually to my sheer amazement, Shell got straight back to me. I doubt it's a typo in the document as it's mentioned in the service manual at least twice that I can see. Shell said it's a very old grease and they don't have it any more. They asked for more information on the application so who knows, maybe they'll come up with something. At the moment they're suggesting possibly either Alvania RL or Stamina RL, the latter looks to me to be the better grease, but I have NFI about these things, and that is based purely on reading through their technical documents.

        The application is a surface grinder spindle using 4 off SKF 2X 7205BG bearings in a typical back-to-back configuration with spring pre-load. The manufacturer recommends repacking the bearings every 5000 hrs/3 years. They feel fine and the finish is good, but based on the grease I removed from the feed gearbox I suspect the spindle hasn't been done for a while (if ever?), so once I have the appropriate grease I'll make myself a little clean area and rebuild the spindle with the existing bearings. The spindle on this machine is extremely easy to remove so I will wait until everything is ready before I whip it off. I'm hoping to have the rest of the machine rebuilt by tonight and running again, but will come back to the spindle later.

        The Shell notes suggest an RL3 weight grease of the Alvania for electrical motor bearings and I presume this would be a similar application. Does RL3 sound right for grinder bearings?

        Pete

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        • #5
          Pete.

          In this day and age, I wouldn’t be trying to match what is probably a 40 year old recommendation. Kluber NBU 15 is what would be used today.

          You only need 0.85cc for a 15% fill. I know a bloke that could send you up a syringe with enough to do the job.

          Regards Phil.

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          • #6
            Ah, you're looking for spindle bearing grease, which is normally NGLI 1.5 - 2.
            The dark green Shell Alvania that was a common OEM grease pack in ballbearings had some additive that was restricted. It was replace by Alvania RL.

            But... why are you regreasing the bearings on a surface grinder? I hope you didn't pull the bearing off the spindle?

            Originally posted by Machtool
            Kluber NBU 15 is what would be used today.
            Agree with Phil -- if you're repacking a precision spindle bearing, hopefully in situ, you should use a modern ultra filtered bearing grease like Kluber.

            Phil's in Australia, by the way...
            "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Machtool
              Pete.

              In this day and age, I wouldn’t be trying to match what is probably a 40 year old recommendation. Kluber NBU 15 is what would be used today.

              You only need 0.85cc for a 15% fill. I know a bloke that could send you up a syringe with enough to do the job.

              Regards Phil.
              Two blokes in fact

              regards

              Greg

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              • #8
                Originally posted by lazlo
                But... why are you regreasing the bearings on a surface grinder?
                Because the grinder manufacturer told me to In fact he provides full instructions on how to do it, and tells me me to do it every 3 years or 5000 hours. Heck he even provides a pretty picture so even I am sorted!

                Spindles don't scare me, you guys are such ... what does Arnold say ... "nancy boys" I promise not to do it next to my sand blaster however Speaking of which, I read about a guy who reassembled his grinder's new bearings in a plastic bag to keep everything nice and clean. Very cunning!

                Oh, Shell got back to me while I was typing this, I'm amazed at the service from them that's for sure. Hats off to Shell. I sent them the full specs and they say the current equivalent, based on what the manufacturer was using and the application, is Alvania RL2. Thanks for the heads up on the local "good stuff" however. Agreed I shouldn't need much for this, and will see how I go. The manufacturer simply says " ... sufficient amount to fill the gaps between the balls is all that is required". They then go on to describe what happens if you over-pack them, and the subsequent meltdown that would have even the Japanese worried!

                Pete

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                • #9
                  Pete, earlier after my first reply I was left wondering if we were on the same page as far as grease weight rating systems.

                  In North America we take for granted the NLGI (National Lubricating Grease Institute) rating scale of 000-6 for granted as the standard system of grease weight or consistency.
                  Knowing that you get out more than I do these days, I was interested if you could enlighten me on what system is used in Australia, and elsewhere if you've run into other systems.

                  This is not a test test, you won't be awarded any prizes for the correct answer.
                  Just curious.
                  Home, down in the valley behind the Red Angus
                  Bad Decisions Make Good Stories​

                  Location: British Columbia

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Willy
                    In North America we take for granted the NLGI (National Lubricating Grease Institute) rating scale of 000-6 for granted as the standard system of grease weight or consistency.
                    Oh heck, I didn't know NGLI was a North American thing? Is the viscosity rating in ounces/cubic inch or something?

                    Wasn't Australia Imperial 40 years ago when his manual was written?
                    "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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                    • #11
                      Willy, since you're not giving out any prizes today I have to confess .... I have NFI about lubricants As far as I'm concerned, "Grease" is either the name of a really crap movie, or something "The Fonz" puts in his hair. I keep 4 types of grease here, a general purpose grease I've had since I was a teenager ... no I'm not kidding. Some slightly more recent EP stuff that promises the world, including all first-borns will be boys. Some decent grease with a lithium base I use when I need to pretend I know what I'm doing, especially since it comes complete with a very fancy looking applicator and impresses every girl who has ever entered the shop (ie none). Finally some anti-seize compound I could pretend is grease if I was BS-artist and wanted to impress the same girls in the shop. That's it around here. The times I've needed to find out about lubricants and it mattered, I simply email the manufacturers. Typically they're a bit slow to respond, but in this case they literally got back to me within minutes!!! A few emails back and forth asking for more info on the application, and here we are.

                      They sent through some spec sheets of two greases they were initially thinking of and they're also rated under NLGI, so I'll take a stab and could I lock in Answer B please? ... the same system as you use. Shell Stamina is available as NLGI 0,1 and 2, while the Alvania RL is available as NLGI 1, 2 & 3.

                      I think where the initial confusion came in was with the Alvania 7. I have no idea what that is, but presume it is nothing more than a name, like 7-Eleven; it's the name of the store, not the street address It's also possible that it was indeed something to do with the weight, but maybe under an old system. NFI to be honest and Google says the same.

                      Pete

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                      • #12
                        lazlo mentioned not removing the bearings from the spindle.

                        Im wondering, Why?

                        My first thought would be that the spindle may of been ground after being placed into the bearings, So at the very least the inner races may be 'aligned' to the spindle rotation wise. And the outer races may be aligned to the housing similarly. (Although I would think the outer races to be less critical to align as they don't rotate and hence more just determin overall alignment of the spindle, Not runout)

                        Or they might of ground it, measured for the high spot, and aligned with the bearings high spot.
                        Play Brutal Nature, Black Moons free to play highly realistic voxel sandbox game.

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                        • #13
                          I have seen most spindle manufacturers state not to screw with their spindles. I'm also not sure precisely why, perhaps the magic pixie dust will escape. NFI However given that this particular manufacturer gives specific instructions of not only how to service the spindle, but how often, they have saved me the trouble of blatantly disregarding the manufacturer's instructions not to screw with their spindle as I tore it to pieces Maybe they just know that Aussies will do it anyway, so they may as well tell us how

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                          • #14
                            I would take notice of what the likes of SKF say for the bearing. They probably say its ok for either oil or grease lube, so wash the old grease out with a thin lubricating oil then repack with the new grease. if the bearing is ok for alvania RL2 then its not a finicky wussy bearing . As always bearing temp after 20 min should be around 40c to 60c.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by lazlo
                              Oh heck, I didn't know NGLI was a North American thing? Is the viscosity rating in ounces/cubic inch or something?..........
                              The NLGI was started in the US back in the early 30's and although I believe it's standards have been widely adopted, I wouldn't think it's standards are universally used. But I must admit that I'm not really sure of how many nations have adopted their system of standards.

                              From http://www.greasedispensing.com/ref-viscosity.html

                              The NLGI grease viscosity classifications explained.

                              The ability of any particular grease to be handled by grease pumps, grease dispensers, and other components in a automated greasing system depends on the grease viscosity (thickness). Grease is a mixture consisting of a natural or synthetic oil base combined with thickeners and additives. Grease viscosity depends on the amount and type of thickener(s) used as well as the viscosity of the base oil. The NLGI (National Grease Lubricating Institute) has established a scale of 000 to 6 representing very low to very high viscosity.



                              The worked penetration values in the table are determined by the ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) testing methods. ASTM D 217 and D1403 are described as "Standard Test Methods for Cone Penetration of Lubricating Grease". To measure penetration, a cone of given material, weight, and finish is allowed to sink into a grease for 5 seconds at a standard temperature of 25°C (77°F). The depth, in tenths of a millimeter, to which the cone sinks into the grease is the penetration. The test methods provide different results for "worked" and "unworked" grease. Handling or working a grease tends to soften it a bit, resulting in a higher penetration number. Since any grease that is delivered through an automated greasing system is definately worked, we have provided only worked values here.Data sheets, available from grease manufacturers usually provide the worked and unworked penetration values, along with the NLGI grade.
                              Home, down in the valley behind the Red Angus
                              Bad Decisions Make Good Stories​

                              Location: British Columbia

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