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Key Machine Lube

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jacobbiljo

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Location: Toronto,Ontario

Post Sat Feb 27, 2016 4:03 am

Key Machine Lube

I just bought a great Curtis 3100 automatic/manual machine off Kijiji and cleaned it up. The slide seems to be sticky and doesn't move nicely manually. What type of lubricant do you guys use on your machines. I'd rather not use something that sticks all the chips to the insides. This machine also uses bushings throughout so there is lots of oil drips to fill as well.

I looked through the ilco manuals and they use all bearings now so this isn't of much concern.
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just1pick+open

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Location: Pennsylvania

Post Sat Feb 27, 2016 7:05 am

Re: Key Machine Lube

I have the Belsaw mode 200. I have always used regular grease in the grease fitting and 3 in 1 oil on the slider, just enough to make it slide freely. Others may have better ideas but this is the method I think works very well.
Matt :hammering:
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plugspin

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Location: Atlanta

Post Sat Feb 27, 2016 9:34 am

Re: Key Machine Lube

Firstly, any oil is better than no oil (and grease is BAD!). Getting more speciic, ideally you would use a thin oil (like lathe spindle oil) for the spindle/cutting wheel shaft. The methodology is to have a thin oil that helps transport metal chips away from spindle bearing surfaces and to apply it often (once per day for average/light use). For parts like the shaft the key vises ride on a stickier oil like lathe bed oil or the 3-in-1 would be prefered. It's a compromise because it will hold on to metal chips a little, but since it's sticker than spindle oil it will cling to the shaft rather than dripping off and not doing any good.

So why is grease bad? On any machine that generates metal chips grease should NEVER be used. It often is used though to the detriment of the machine. Grease guarantees that all the metal chips that land in it will be held in place and will grind away on your bearing surfaces. When was the last time you cleaned all the grease off of something? Guess what, all the metal chips from the last 10 years are all collecting right on the metal as you keep reapplying more grease on top of the old grease. It doesn't take very long for the metal chips grinding away on the spindle to add slop and ruin a machine. That is why oil should be used, the oil will easily flow through the parts and transport metal chips with it. You just have to keep re-applying it which is a small price to pay to keep a machine running smoothly for 30+ years.

And don't use an air-hose to blow out a machine, use a brush. Air will blow metal chips deeper into the machine and also get them into places they normally couldn't reach.

While I'm on the subject, any machine that generates metal chips may have oil cups or zerk fittings on it. Anyone that has maintained farm equipment may have used zerk fittings for applying grease, however on a machine tool these are for oil. Sometimes someone sees a zerk fitting on a lathe or mill and pumps it full of grease thinking they are doing a good thing when in actuality they are causing harm until the grease is cleaned out. Key machines are just specialty horizontal mills, all the same rules apply.

Lastly, avoid any oiler cans that have a crimped bottom. They all leak eventually (especially with a low viscosity oil like spindle oil). I only use plastic oiler cans at this point. Dinner-style ketchup bottles work well too.

Probably way more than you wanted to hear but there you go.
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jacobbiljo

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Joined: Thu Dec 26, 2013 3:34 am

Location: Toronto,Ontario

Post Sat Feb 27, 2016 7:11 pm

Re: Key Machine Lube

Wow thanks for the fantastic reply.
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just1pick+open

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Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2014 1:13 am

Location: Pennsylvania

Post Sat Feb 27, 2016 9:09 pm

Re: Key Machine Lube

plugspin wrote:Firstly, any oil is better than no oil (and grease is BAD!). Getting more speciic, ideally you would use a thin oil (like lathe spindle oil) for the spindle/cutting wheel shaft. The methodology is to have a thin oil that helps transport metal chips away from spindle bearing surfaces and to apply it often (once per day for average/light use). For parts like the shaft the key vises ride on a stickier oil like lathe bed oil or the 3-in-1 would be prefered. It's a compromise because it will hold on to metal chips a little, but since it's sticker than spindle oil it will cling to the shaft rather than dripping off and not doing any good.

So why is grease bad? On any machine that generates metal chips grease should NEVER be used. It often is used though to the detriment of the machine. Grease guarantees that all the metal chips that land in it will be held in place and will grind away on your bearing surfaces. When was the last time you cleaned all the grease off of something? Guess what, all the metal chips from the last 10 years are all collecting right on the metal as you keep reapplying more grease on top of the old grease. It doesn't take very long for the metal chips grinding away on the spindle to add slop and ruin a machine. That is why oil should be used, the oil will easily flow through the parts and transport metal chips with it. You just have to keep re-applying it which is a small price to pay to keep a machine running smoothly for 30+ years.

And don't use an air-hose to blow out a machine, use a brush. Air will blow metal chips deeper into the machine and also get them into places they normally couldn't reach.

While I'm on the subject, any machine that generates metal chips may have oil cups or zerk fittings on it. Anyone that has maintained farm equipment may have used zerk fittings for applying grease, however on a machine tool these are for oil. Sometimes someone sees a zerk fitting on a lathe or mill and pumps it full of grease thinking they are doing a good thing when in actuality they are causing harm until the grease is cleaned out. Key machines are just specialty horizontal mills, all the same rules apply.

Lastly, avoid any oiler cans that have a crimped bottom. They all leak eventually (especially with a low viscosity oil like spindle oil). I only use plastic oiler cans at this point. Dinner-style ketchup bottles work well too.

Probably way more than you wanted to hear but there you go.

no more grease then. thanks for the info. :pimpmofo:
xeo: i use an electric buzzer exclusively for my ass that gets sanitized afterwards
PhoneMan: would have freaked my friend out if hed come over
MBI: Most anything goes.
PhoneMan: way to give me nightmares
selim: ok then blow your load,, i'll take anything free now a day's
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TeamStarlet

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Posts: 26

Joined: Tue Dec 17, 2013 3:18 pm

Location: Boston, MA.

Post Sun Feb 28, 2016 12:47 am

Re: Key Machine Lube

Thanks plugspin! Great info :)
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Oldfast

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OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer
OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer

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Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2011 3:16 pm

Location: Michigan

Post Tue Mar 01, 2016 3:13 am

Re: Key Machine Lube

plugspin wrote:....While I'm on the subject, any machine that generates metal chips may have oil cups or zerk fittings on it. Anyone that has maintained farm equipment may have used zerk fittings for applying grease, however on a machine tool these are for oil. Sometimes someone sees a zerk fitting on a lathe or mill and pumps it full of grease thinking they are doing a good thing when in actuality they are causing harm until the grease is cleaned out. Key machines are just specialty horizontal mills, all the same rules apply.

That I did not know! Thanks for this info plugspin.
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."

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