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Reprap-Compatible grease

Posted by Buback 
Reprap-Compatible grease
October 06, 2010 05:33PM
I read in the wiki that I should grease up the bearing rods with silicone grease.

Is this the Dielectric grease I can get at the hardware/auto parts store? Is silicone grease all the same (generally) or do i need something specific.

What about lithium grease? will this do bad things to the repraped parts?
Re: Reprap-Compatible grease
October 06, 2010 05:58PM
http://reprap.org/wiki/Lubrication seem to favour PTFE grease, like the brand "super lube". I've acquired a tube off ebay, but have yet to test it. From the bottom of that wiki page: "Silicone grease that is often used with RepRap is actually meant to be used with rubber gaskets, o-rings and similar equipment. It is not "bad" and some users report good results with it. There is also silicone grease with PTFE that is reported to work well." So far I've used a tiny amount of silicone spray, and it helps a lot compared to nothing, but seems to wear off fast.

Lithium grease seems to be recommended for (extruder) gears, or thus plastic-on-plastic movement. (?) See the comment by nophead here: [casainho-emcrepstrap.blogspot.com]

Blog with RepRap Comic
Re: Reprap-Compatible grease
October 06, 2010 07:09PM
I have noticed on the cheap bubblejet printers they use a white grease. No idea what this is though.
Re: Reprap-Compatible grease
October 07, 2010 10:55AM
That wiki page must have been hiding!
It does mention PTFE 'oil', and i don't know if the author was just being loose with words, but i would think 'oil' means petroleum- based, which wouldn't be good, as far as I've read.

Yes I would think that most printers have the proper grease in them. the often have plastic gears and ABS shells, so they would use compatible grease. I took apart many printers when I first was thinking about building a reprap, and I noticed a couple had a pale green grease. It was probably just colored so it could be visually inspected.

anybody know a supplier for printer grease?

Edit: I found this PDF on the super-lube website with compatibility info. ABS is listed as compatible, but PLA isn't on the chart. The only place i can think where there is rubber in a mendel is the timing belts.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/07/2010 11:05AM by Buback.
Re: Reprap-Compatible grease
October 07, 2010 03:28PM
Dielectric grease is a type of silicon grease. You can usually buy it cheaper from
a home improvement store in the electrical aisle. It's often used to join aluminum conduit and lube
wires before pulling them through conduit - so you can get a good sized can of it.
It even comes in handy squeeze bottles.

Personally, I use silicon grease on plastic parts because it does not react with plastic.
Silicon grease should not be used with metal on metal load bearing parts because it
will actually wear the parts out quicker (according to the usage notes with the Novaguard
grease I use). It's great as a waterproof sealant on metal, but not meant for sliding joints.

PTFE grease and Lithium grease will react with plastic, so I use them for metal on metal joints.
PTFE grease has better performance on sliding metal parts than lithium grease, but
it usually costs more. I usually only use the PTFE grease when the part is going to be in
a wet, humid, or really hot environment - lithium grease separates when it gets hot and will
dissolve in water. Besides the slightly higher cost, the only other downside I've found with
PTFE grease is that it is a pain to wash off or out of anything it gets on.

Last thing. I've never seen PTFE or Lithium grease actually damage or even mar a plastic
part, but your results may vary. I have seen silicon grease and spray destroy bearings though.

Ok, one more last thing. About the grease used in printers mentioned above, HP, Epson, Lexmark,
and Xerox use silicon grease on their plastic gears. They are sometimes dyed to a color to aid
in visual inspection. HP, Epson, and Lexmark use PTFE grease on their sliding metal parts.
Xerox uses moly grease on their sliding metal parts and roller chains.
Re: Reprap-Compatible grease
October 09, 2010 05:06PM
cluso99 Wrote:
> I have noticed on the cheap bubblejet printers
> they use a white grease. No idea what this is
> though.

That is ceramic grease, PTFE grease may react with some plastics.
I've got access to MagnaLube (PTFE grease) at work, so I might do a reaction test with PLA to see how much the two react.

Silicon grease is easy to come by and non reactive to plastics
Ceramic grease, is a little more difrficult, though you can get this from most model shops that deal with R/C.
Re: Reprap-Compatible grease
September 05, 2011 09:22AM
Grogyan Wrote:
> I've got access to MagnaLube (PTFE grease) at
> work, so I might do a reaction test with PLA to
> see how much the two react.

Any feedback about this test?


Re: Reprap-Compatible grease
September 12, 2011 11:19AM

I use Lithium grease for smooth rod and my bushings. It works great.

When I repaired my window system, in my car, people tell me to use lithium grease for the mechanic system : and it was a piece of plastic (maybe ABS) moving inside a metal sliding.

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