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Graphite Lubricant VS Bearing Grease on Wood

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Forum topic by LoyalAppleGeek posted 04-05-2016 05:07 AM 937 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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LoyalAppleGeek

122 posts in 361 days


04-05-2016 05:07 AM

Topic tags/keywords: jig question slide lubricant lubricate grease graphite plywood tool binding

Hi everyone!

I’m working on a jig build with a wood slide (3/4 ply) and use graphite lubricant since its dry. While this works very well, when the jig is under load with the slide fully extended, it tends to bind. I need a more heavy duty lubricant, so I was wondering if bearing grease would have any negative effect on plywood, or if it would be like construction adhesive and not effect the moisture content of the wood, since like construction adhesive, It doesn’t contain any water. I can protect it from sawdust since the slide is in an inclosure. It seems like it may dampen the plywood, but it also seems like it won’t.

If anyone has tried this method or simply knows more about bearing grease than I do, I sure would appreciate help.

Thanks!


13 replies so far

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

3927 posts in 2710 days


#1 posted 04-05-2016 04:22 PM

You might try a teflon PSA tape instead of grease.

View dday's profile

dday

48 posts in 896 days


#2 posted 04-05-2016 04:33 PM

A good coating of paste wax wasn’t enough “slide”?

View wood2woodknot's profile

wood2woodknot

49 posts in 1440 days


#3 posted 04-05-2016 05:33 PM

+1 – beeswax, paraffin, or even scraps from bar soap

-- ajh

View pintodeluxe's profile

pintodeluxe

4859 posts in 2280 days


#4 posted 04-05-2016 05:57 PM

I switched to metal runners for all my jigs and fixtures years ago, and it seemed to fix the friction issues. The tracks get sprayed with Bostik Glide Cote once in a while, but beyond that they don’t require and maintenance.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View LoyalAppleGeek's profile

LoyalAppleGeek

122 posts in 361 days


#5 posted 04-05-2016 06:33 PM

Good tips guys! All I have in the shop right now was the grease and graphite lubricant, so was wondering if they would work. I’ll be picking up some paste wax on the next town trip, but that’s not for a while. I usually use lacqueres and homemade stains, so I don’t keep much in the way of waxes, polishes and lubricants around. So is the grease a no then?

View JBrow's profile

JBrow

819 posts in 387 days


#6 posted 04-05-2016 06:40 PM

LoyalAppleGeek,

I would imagine grease would make the jig slide nicely, but I personally would avoid it. Introducing grease into the wood shop worries me, even when greasing up machine bearings. The thought of grease on project stock could leave me with a lot of extra sanding/scraping and could mean a contaminated work piece ends up as scrap. Also I do not like grease on my clothes or hands (which then touch project parts). I just cannot seem to use or work around grease and not get it all over me and everything near me.

I would think that grease on plywood or wood is little different from a non-hardening oil finish (like mineral oil). Periodic cleaning and re-application of grease would be required, especially as wood dust mixes with the grease. Also I am not sure whether an additive in the grease could break down the glue in the plywood (though I doubt it would).

In addition to the metal jig runner suggested, Peachtree Woodworking Supply (and I am sure there are other suppliers) offer UHMW Sheets and Strips including strips sized for mitre slots. This too would reduce friction in the mitre slot.

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

4244 posts in 1666 days


#7 posted 04-05-2016 06:51 PM

Grease is a dust magnet. If you don’t have paste wax or paraffin, you should… if for nothing else than to coat all your bare cast iron machine tops to prevent rusting and easier wood movement across them.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View LoyalAppleGeek's profile

LoyalAppleGeek

122 posts in 361 days


#8 posted 04-05-2016 07:11 PM



Grease is a dust magnet. If you don t have paste wax or paraffin, you should… if for nothing else than to coat all your bare cast iron machine tops to prevent rusting and easier wood movement across them.

Cheers,
Brad

- MrUnix

I know it’s bad for dust, but like I said in my original post this is an inclosed assembly, so the dust might not be as much of an issue. I’ll add the wax to my hardware store list and pick some up next time I go into town.

View woodworkerguyca's profile

woodworkerguyca

27 posts in 511 days


#9 posted 04-05-2016 08:25 PM

After trying graphite on a ply-in-metal-track jig, I found talcum (baby) powder worked really good. Cheap as anything and about as non-reactive as I can think of. It does however make your shop smell like a baby.

View WadeHolloway's profile

WadeHolloway

85 posts in 1561 days


#10 posted 04-05-2016 09:35 PM



After trying graphite on a ply-in-metal-track jig, I found talcum (baby) powder worked really good. Cheap as anything and about as non-reactive as I can think of. It does however make your shop smell like a baby.

- woodworkerguyca


I like the smell of babies. :)

View LoyalAppleGeek's profile

LoyalAppleGeek

122 posts in 361 days


#11 posted 04-09-2016 11:59 PM



LoyalAppleGeek,

I would imagine grease would make the jig slide nicely, but I personally would avoid it. Introducing grease into the wood shop worries me, even when greasing up machine bearings. The thought of grease on project stock could leave me with a lot of extra sanding/scraping and could mean a contaminated work piece ends up as scrap. Also I do not like grease on my clothes or hands (which then touch project parts). I just cannot seem to use or work around grease and not get it all over me and everything near me.

I would think that grease on plywood or wood is little different from a non-hardening oil finish (like mineral oil). Periodic cleaning and re-application of grease would be required, especially as wood dust mixes with the grease. Also I am not sure whether an additive in the grease could break down the glue in the plywood (though I doubt it would).

In addition to the metal jig runner suggested, Peachtree Woodworking Supply (and I am sure there are other suppliers) offer UHMW Sheets and Strips including strips sized for mitre slots. This too would reduce friction in the mitre slot.

- JBrow

JBrow,

Thanks for all the information! For some reason your replay didn’t show, I logged on today and saw it. Alright, I’ll probably keep grease out of it, as I don’t want to risk anything after taking so much time on this jig. I’ll look into the said options.

Thanks again!

View MadMark's profile

MadMark

978 posts in 920 days


#12 posted 04-10-2016 12:14 AM

For gawds sake do not use a silicon lube anywhere near wood!

M

-- Madmark - Madmark2150@yahoo.com Wiretreefarm.com

View NormG's profile

NormG

5507 posts in 2471 days


#13 posted 04-10-2016 04:39 AM

Talcum baby powder works very well

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

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