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What lubricant for my mill's ways and ACME screws?

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  • What lubricant for my mill's ways and ACME screws?

    I am reassembling my mill after moving it and I want to clean off the old Chinese goo and replace it with a good lube on the table's ways and threaded acme rods.

    What should I use and where?


  • #2
    I use a light "way" oil on my small surface
    grinder. The viscosity is that of 3in1 oil
    BUT don't use 3in1 oil on your machine ways.
    I bought a five gallon jug from J&L Industrial Supply for a good price. I'm
    sorry I don't remember the name of the oil
    but if you look in a supply catalog for
    "way" oil you should have several options.
    Also, if you have a oil and lubricant supplier in your area you might be able to
    compare prices. FYI never use a detergent
    oil or penetrating oil as a lubricant it
    can attack seals or so I've been told. I
    hope this is helpful.


    • #3
      Use the proper viscosity R&O Gear & bearing lubricant for the gear boxes (ISO68 is about a 20W) Mobil, or any other oil company will sell it to you. If you can't find that an Anti-Wear Hydraulic or Tractor Hydraulic can be used in a pinch - use the right viscosity.

      For your ways, dovetails, slides, screws, etc. a way lubricant is recommended. It has the proper tackifiers to stick to the ways.

      Synthetics have lower friction, higher film strengths, use less energy and have less impact on the environment. They have been proven to provide lower wear, reduce energy use, and lower maintenance costs over the life of machinery but cost quite a bit more initially than their mineral counterparts. The mineral products are inferior in all regards.

      [This message has been edited by Thrud (edited 04-18-2002).]


      • #4
        Hiya! So Thrud, I take it by your answer
        I gave half right advice? I bet you're an
        engineer by your answers; if so, what kind and what kind of work do you do? Just curious I'm just a tool and die maker or at work a "worn out die, beat up punch presses
        fixer upper" I appreciate your advice and
        hope I can be of some use to the others.
        Would the way oil be bad for a lead screw?
        I've always put 90W oil in gear boxes.


        • #5
          Thrud is the smartest guy in the chat room I have no doubt.
          What he don't know, he'll tell you where to go.



          • #6
            For the ways, use Vactra #2



            • #7
              mite, I bet you caused the poor guy to have trouble getting his hat on. Mike


              • #8
                Yes, you can use way oil on the screws - if they are ball screws make sure you use the specified viscosity to protect those expensive parts. Gear oil in gear box is bad if you are talking about a normal hypoid axle lube for rear ends as these are not R&O Gear & Bearing lubes. The R&O will not attack yellow metal parts that may be present in the gearbox or bearings, regular gearlube for hypoid axles will attack and sulphate yellow metal parts resulting in a rebuild. If any of your gear boxes are worm drives you are asking for trouble using normal EP gear lubes.

                No, I am no engineer - I tried to bring a pillow to class to protect my head when I fell asleep, but they confiscated it because the snoring annoyed the other students who brought apples for the professor.

                Metal mite
                You should check around thomas register sometime - you would be shocked at what you can find. I bought my brain there. $2.00 on sale! Russian army surplus - tube type.

                No friction here from hair, man.
                Plus, that ain't the head that swells - not like that one works anymore either...

                [This message has been edited by Thrud (edited 04-19-2002).]