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Thread: Bearing grease

  1. #1
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    Bearing grease

    What is everyone's favorite bearing grease for bottom brackets and if you use a different one for pivots. I'm currently using Phil wood waterproof and looking for something that is easier to inject into the Chris King bottom bracket tool.

    Also, the best way to clean bearings? Blast with solvent>aerosol t-9 then repack?

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    Motorex is my go to general purpose grease. Works well in the king bb's. I clean cartrage bearings in a basic ultrasound. A dish of solvent and compressed air works almost as well.

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    for cleaning bearing si use a muffin tin and swish it around in some solvent. sometimes i throw them in the parts tank. for grease i use whatever is in the gun, right now it is lucas red n tacky. i have used finish line, slick honey

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    Rather than starting my own thread, I'll hijack this thread

    I've tried many greases over the years, such as Phil's, Finish Line synthetic etc. Right now, I've just purchased two Dualco grease guns (incidentally, amazon had them for $8 each, and Jenson price matched and shipped free as part of a >$50 order), and filled one with Super Lube for bearings and assembly grease, and the other with Slickoleum/Slick Honey which I intend to use on shock/fork seals as required.

    My question though, is can I use Slick Honey for bearings too? It looks softer than Super Lube and other greases I've used in the past.

    I find pictures help all threads

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  5. #5
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    Slick Honey works OK for bearings, it just doesn't last as long. Probably looking at 500 miles in dry conditions in the average hub. It does roll really fast though. If you're willing to take that trade off then go for it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by reptilezs View Post
    for cleaning bearing si use a muffin tin and swish it around in some solvent. sometimes i throw them in the parts tank. for grease i use whatever is in the gun, right now it is lucas red n tacky. i have used finish line, slick honey
    Lucas Red and Tacky is some really good grease and you can pick it up at most auto parts stores for a whole lot less than any "bicycle specific" grease. I assure you if it will hold up to highway speeds and water submersion for boat trailers it will hold up to anything a bike will throw at it.

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    Bearing grease

    Quote Originally Posted by Crash Gordon View Post
    Lucas Red and Tacky is some really good grease and you can pick it up at most auto parts stores for a whole lot less than any "bicycle specific" grease. I assure you if it will hold up to highway speeds and water submersion for boat trailers it will hold up to anything a bike will throw at it.
    That's what I was looking for, thanks for the advice! I guess I should have said I need something to go in a grease gun with full size zerk fitting (that's what's on the Chris King tool).

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    I have had good luck with rock n roll red devil grease for all bearing applications.

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    Im not convinced you need something very thick for bicycle bearings since they dont operate in the higher temperature or load range that cars do.. I also wonder if a thicker grease in something like a bicycle bearing would sort of get pushed aside and not move back into the bearings surface area.

    Chris King's ring drive lube is whats suggested for the their rear hubs bearings. Its very thin compared to any typical bearing grease, but works great in that application, so surely something thinner could be used in other bicycle bearings..

    Im sure some engineer could shed more light on the subject, at this point im just a shade tree mechanic.
    Put a mountain biker in a room with 2 bowling balls and we'll break one and lose the other - GelatiCruiser

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    best bearing grease is rock n roll super web
    '14 rocky mountain altitude, rally edition
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    Lucas Oil marine grease works good as well.

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    I won the state science fair in 8th grade ('83ish) with my experiment on what's the best bicycle grease. Only two of my tested greases are still out there, looks like: Pennzoil axle grease, and Phil Wood (the winner). I'd pack a bearing, put it on the test rig (powered by an Apple II+), run the tests. Then I'd hook a stand-mounted electric drill up to the axle, set the hub to spinning for hours on end, and re-test.

    On the initial test, the coefficient of friction increased as the viscosity of the grease increased -- Phil Wood looked like it was going to lose, as the most viscous it had the worst performance. Spray lube was the winner. Then came the run-in and re-test -- now, the least-viscous lubes were showing the highest coefficient of friction, with Phil Wood on top. Unlike other greases, Phil's viscosity didn't break down, so its results were the same after the run-in; other greases broke down and gave worse results.

    My conclusion was that the more viscous the grease, the better it stayed where it was supposed to, and the less it broke down with use. I'm not familiar with current products, is there anything more viscous than Phil Wood out there? If not, I'd personally keep swearing by the green goop. Scientifically proven by a 13-year-old back in the 80's...

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    Very cool bikefat!!!

    I wonder how well Red Line CV-2 grease would perform in your test 30 years later...

    Miata front wheel hubs are known to fail in short order when abused (high temp/pressure) and many have tried just about every synthetic high temp greases and the only one that seems to work is the Red Line CV-2. Repacked once a year and the hubs seem to last indefinitely.

    I couldn't find my tub of CV-2 when I repacked my bike's hubs so I did some searching and went with Lubrimatic biodegradable grease recommended by an mtbr poster.

    CV-2 may/may not be ideal for MTB use but prob would fare well on your test rig.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bikefat View Post
    My conclusion was that the more viscous the grease, the better it stayed where it was supposed to, and the less it broke down with use.
    I agree. There are a lot of good ones but I really liked the Shimano (greenish) grease, that stuff is so sticky you can hardly get it off your hands!

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    Rather than start my own thread I'm going to hijack this one. I was going to ask about greases and if there are different greases for different applications. I have some park tool polylube 1000 that I used to install pedals and put on my qr's to keep them quiet. Could I use that for anything that needs to be greased?

    Is there a good site or thread in here that says what needs to be greased and how often?

    Second question is about Lubes. I typically use white lightning clean ride for my chain which seems to work fine. I've also been given some other lubes at events and such. One of them is a wet lube. When would I want to use a wet lube? Also can I use any of them to lube cables or do i need cable specific lube?

    Thanks

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    There are some fasteners that are better with anti-seize or even loctite. But grease works on everything in a pinch.

    Dry lube never lasts that long for me when it's wet out. I live in a place that's wet this time of year, so I've switched to wet lube for my chain. I don't lube anything else regularly, but use Tri-Flow when I do. You can substitute another lube with no particular consequence. Bear in mind that wet lubes hold dirt, so when you can leave well enough alone with no negative consequences, that may be the better approach.

    Before getting too crazy with lube, look at whether the point you're lubricating is self-lubricated. For example, teflon and brass are both used for their self-lubricating properties, and teflon especially can usually be left alone for the life of the part.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    Quote Originally Posted by hankscorpio View Post
    Rather than start my own thread I'm going to hijack this one. I was going to ask about greases and if there are different greases for different applications. I have some park tool polylube 1000 that I used to install pedals and put on my qr's to keep them quiet. Could I use that for anything that needs to be greased?

    Is there a good site or thread in here that says what needs to be greased and how often?

    Second question is about Lubes. I typically use white lightning clean ride for my chain which seems to work fine. I've also been given some other lubes at events and such. One of them is a wet lube. When would I want to use a wet lube? Also can I use any of them to lube cables or do i need cable specific lube?

    Thanks
    park poly lube is fine for bearings

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I agree. There are a lot of good ones but I really liked the Shimano (greenish) grease, that stuff is so sticky you can hardly get it off your hands!
    The Shimano grease is rebranded motorex FYI. I've been using it for years, it's awesome.

    [QUOTE=SandSpur;10811634]

    Chris King's ring drive lube is whats suggested for the their rear hubs bearings. Its very thin compared to any typical bearing grease, but works great in that application, so surely something thinner could be used in other bicycle bearings..
    /QUOTE]

    Ring drive lube is for the ring drive mechanism. It was never intended to be used for the bearings itself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by customfab View Post
    The Shimano grease is rebranded motorex FYI. I've been using it for years, it's awesome.

    Quote Originally Posted by SandSpur View Post

    Chris King's ring drive lube is whats suggested for the their rear hubs bearings. Its very thin compared to any typical bearing grease, but works great in that application, so surely something thinner could be used in other bicycle bearings..
    Ring drive lube is for the ring drive mechanism. It was never intended to be used for the bearings itself.
    maybe not intended.. but suggested
    Put a mountain biker in a room with 2 bowling balls and we'll break one and lose the other - GelatiCruiser

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    The problem with thin lubes is centrifugal force, they may be better initially but how often are you repacking your bearings? Or, have you ever popped open the hub on an old bike and seen the solid used-to-be-grease ring not doing the bearings any good? These days, a temperature range would be helpful information (sure to be abused by the marketing folks, though) on the packaging for any grease. My long-ago grease test used a 50*F lab temp, and a heat gun to simulate riding in 100*F weather, because I only saw a coupla idiots trying to ride their bikes in winter in the early 80's.

    But heat's just not the question any more, is it? At least for me, the problem for fatbiking becomes how cold does any grease remain effective? I screwed around with Peltier plates on a computer build a few years back, getting an old steel hub and sucking the heat out of it makes simulating -40* in a cold lab (my uninsulated mud porch) doable. Would more viscous greases "solidify" at higher temps than oils, and lose all effectiveness? Also, cold-temp testing would be way lower RPMs than for high-temp, mitigating centrifugal force...

    But even that doesn't address the real problem, which is the freehub. Best to experiment with as few pawls as possible, I think a lube which fails a 2-pawl freehub at cold temps would be just as inappropriate for 6-pawl? Just pondering how to modernize my experiment and apply it to current lube products, get past the subjective and down to the objective for different applications, particularly regarding freehubs in subzero conditions. Suggestions welcome.

    Yeah, I'm a geek, I always loved the "Amateur Scientist" column in Scientific American. Best feedback I got at the science fair BITD, was a couple physicists debating whether my test rig was measuring static or dynamic friction, AFAIC there's a case to be made for pragmatic results vs. overthinking anything...
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    Just a cross-link to a thread about freehubs in cold conditions:

    -30, what freehub body?
    KOA radio: Broncos 97-3 since 1975 when scoring 30+ at home.

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    I've got Mobil 1 synthetic in the grease gun, because that's what I use on my vehicles. I figure it's good enough for bike bearings. For general shop grease I got a tub of Finish line teflon years ago and it's still going strong.

    Don't overthink it

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    Quote Originally Posted by briscoelab View Post
    Don't overthink it
    Where's the fun in that?
    KOA radio: Broncos 97-3 since 1975 when scoring 30+ at home.

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    Quote Originally Posted by briscoelab View Post
    I've got Mobil 1 synthetic in the grease gun, because that's what I use on my vehicles. I figure it's good enough for bike bearings. For general shop grease I got a tub of Finish line teflon years ago and it's still going strong.

    Don't overthink it
    I just recently switched from using Bel-Ray waterproof grease in Bottom Brackets to Mobil 1. So far it's good an freed up the drivetrain. Still using Bel-Ray in the suspension pivots, and packed 100% full for the pivots.

    PK
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    [QUOTE=customfab;10859341]The Shimano grease is rebranded motorex FYI. I've been using it for years, it's awesome.

    Quote Originally Posted by SandSpur View Post

    Chris King's ring drive lube is whats suggested for the their rear hubs bearings. Its very thin compared to any typical bearing grease, but works great in that application, so surely something thinner could be used in other bicycle bearings..
    /QUOTE]

    Ring drive lube is for the ring drive mechanism. It was never intended to be used for the bearings itself.
    It is precisely what Chris King spells out to use for the bearings in the front and rear hubs in the hub service tool manual. I can't knock that recommendation considering I have a 12 year old king rear hub that has been used on my primary bike that whole time and it is still on the original bearings.

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