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Maho MH400 P lubricants?

Epicycloid

Plastic
Joined
Oct 17, 2004
Location
Shady Cove, OR
Can someone offer suggestions for currently available lubricants they are using in their 40+ year old manual Maho's? I'm slowly working on making mine into a manual mill.

What is a good alternative to the CL 46 / ARAL-Sumurol CM 46 for the drive gear oil bath?

Is there any acceptable / readily available equivalent to the Klüber - F 23 A workspindle grease?

What are others using for the central lubrication / way oil pump?

Thanks for any hints!

--Jon
 
.What is a good alternative to the CL 46 / ARAL-Sumurol CM 46 for the drive gear oil bath?
I would say, any industrial gear oil, ISO 46, synthetic or mineral. All will be invariably labelled Exteme Pressure with an indecipherable long list of industry standards and certifications. Also I think that ISO 68 will work equally well as long there are no hight load plain bearing involved.
 
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For the gearbox suggest any good quality "AW" ( anti wear) Hydraulic oil ISO 46.
Better choice if you can get it would be "Mobil DTE Oil Medium"
Difference is that the Oil Medium is made for systems that use settlement to remove dirt from the oil. Hydraulic oils are designed for systems that have filters and have additives to
keep dirt in suspension where the filter can remove it......

For the spindle i would go with Kluber "Super LDS 18 if spindle runs below 3000 rpm.

As to way lube I use Mobil "Vacuoline 1419" which is the current replacement to the original "Vactra #4" (ISO 220)
It is somewhat hard to find.
Some here are running Mobil "Vactra #4" and deem it good enough.....

Cheers Ross
 
Thank you both.

Does Vactra #4 get tacky over time, like Vactra #2 does?

I use Vactra #2 on my lathe bed, and if I have't moved the tailstock in say a month or two, I have to squirt some new oil on the bed just to be able to get it sliding again. Maybe pilot error or rookie mistake?

Off to try to source the options,

--Jon
 
I use Vactra #2 on my lathe bed, and if I have't moved the tailstock in say a month or two,
My opinion is that specialized guideways oils are meant to help on production or daily use machines, but give advantages on these only. There the tackiness, or extra adhesion as one want to call it is a plus as it supposedly reduces the amount of lubricant.
If one doesn't use a machine very often that it becomes a disadvantages as you noted. Common EP oil is then better together with visual and finger checks.
 
Totally disagree!
Waylubes have “tackafiers” that among other things helps keep the oil in place.
Most machine ways have vertical components.
Way oil is made to help it stay in place on those surfaces.
Without this the surface tends to become dry with “ normal” oils running down and leaving the surface “ under lubricated”
Most ways require motion to spread the lube , using an oil that does not cling and stay in place will result in initial slide movement with little or no oil between the moving elements.
It’s like starting your car with no oil in the sump.
Way oil is a purpose designed and blended product. The result of real world development not speculation.
Cheers Ross
 
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On lathe there are no vertical surfaces, and I found that EP ISO 68 doesn't dries fast, and stays in place over a day of use.

On the mill, the most used slides are also horizontal, plus there are oil reservoirs and wicks that keeps the surfaces always lubricated, all you have to do is to take a full range of motion to spread it around. Back in 1962, the manufacturer did not bother more than recommend one single viscosity grade oil, without brand or name for everything. 60 years later, upon inspection, the guides are nearly as good as when new, and I suspect that over all these decades they have seen more automotive oil than else.

I follow the good old habit with of wiping and applying a bit of oil daily before use, as necessity and hand feeling dictates. These are no CNC machines of course, and I learned to use "direct handwheel feeling" quite a bit on both using and adjusting the machine.
The "initial dry movement", which is very very small, slow, and short in time, doesn't bother me a bit, and the hardened surfaces that occasionally have to suffer it, do agree with me. That's very different that running an engine with no oil.

I also like to the machine to ride on new fresh oil rather than used tacky one, and take this chance also to check around and adjust plays as needed. Speaking of which, I like to keep them a split hair loser than tight, while well tight is out of discussion for me. To my good surprise, I found that when confirming plays with a DTI, by rocking the slide at the better leverage point, it confirms the setting made by hand were very close to ideal.

Generally speaking I try to use my intellect and comprehension, based on my direct experience (which is something different that speculation) in what I do. Which means I strive to do things sensibly, and accept compromise in order to reach results, not adherence to a firm line of thinking or proving a point.

Again, and then I will be done with this discussion, it's important to start from the premise that what I, and who knows how many others in their home shops do is very different from having a floor lot of expensive, precise machines that run all day and night under somebody else supervision. They would be wrong doing things like me, and vice-versa.
 
Good points from both perspectives. Thanks for the comments and insights.

Like many here, I'm not a production machinist, so I need to apply some judgment to almost all the guidelines vs. daily-use machines. I asked the above since there is a big difference to me between my saddle, used frequently, and my tailstock, used much less often. Squirting fresh oil is the only way to loosen it up. That's what made me ponder the Vactra characteristics.

--Jon
 
It’s your machine and hence your choice.
As to the OP questions on lubricants my belief is that the original builder is your best resource. Don’t think I have ever seen any lubricant specification where different oils were specified due to different operating frequencies.
Have seen different specifications braised on temperature however.
Cheers Ross
 
It’s your machine and hence your choice.
As to the OP questions on lubricants my belief is that the original builder is your best resource. Don’t think I have ever seen any lubricant specification where different oils were specified due to different operating frequencies.
Have seen different specifications braised on temperature however.
Cheers Ross
Original builders picked their oil 60 years ago on the machines we are discussing here
So some things might have changed in the field of lubrication
ANY OIL IS BETTER AS NO OIL

Peter
 
Have seen different specifications braised on temperature however.
Good point. While researching on the matter of which oil to use for my machine spindles (plain bronze taper journals), I used an improvised viscosity cup to base off some comprovable data about what is what. The cup measured very close to the published times for a given ISO viscosity, which is to be taken at 40 C.
I was surprised about how much thinner oil becomes when just going from 20 to 40 C. These temperatures, or a bit below that, are seasonally typical in my home shop, without even warming up the machines.
In short, I found that machine gear oil, EP ISO 68 is a bit too thick for my liking, 46 seems about right for anything lightly loaded, but if you want something that really gets in between close sliding surfaces even when cold, it should be 32. However, it won't stay there for a long time.
 
Be careful.
Some EP GEAR oils do not play well with bronze.
Modern gearboxes that require EP protection are designed to eliminate any bronze bushings.
I Would not be using an EP oil
In a plain bearing spindle.
If gears are present then an “AW” hydraulic or “Turbine” oil of the appropriate weight.
My guess is that an ISO 46 is good unless the machine is in a hot environment.
Cheers Ross
 
Ross, do you have any source supporting a possible detrimental effects of current EP oils (of which one can get both mineral and fully synthetic types) to bronze bushing? The fact that they are certified for today's machinery is not, in itself, sufficient to exclude them on older machines.
Personally I will not be using hydraulic oil as I do not see any similarity between my application and the one on a machine which uses a fluid mainly to transmit force with significant temperatures. And even less turbine oil formulated for the extreme conditions found on something that continuously spins 50 - 100 time faster than my old humble milling machine.
 
Most if not all hydraulic pressure systems have pumps with close tollerences, dither gear or piston.
Hydraulic oils are formulated to prevent wear in these demanding mechanical devices. Gears pushing 3000psi oil are subjected to higher wear potential than any geared milling spindle.
“Turbine” oils denote a highly refined oil which might well be what one would wish for close running plain bushing spindles.

Cheers Ross
 
Ross, do you have any source supporting a possible detrimental effects of current EP oils (of which one can get both mineral and fully synthetic types) to bronze bushing? The fact that they are certified for today's machinery is not, in itself, sufficient to exclude them on older machines.
Personally I will not be using hydraulic oil as I do not see any similarity between my application and the one on a machine which uses a fluid mainly to transmit force with significant temperatures. And even less turbine oil formulated for the extreme conditions found on something that continuously spins 50 - 100 time faster than my old humble milling machine.
Have a look at the section on GL5 oils......(EP)

Cheers Ross
 
Wow, re Ross' Castrol link, talk about reading the "fine print"... if someone just glossed over the specs, and didn't realize the "...EP additives can be corrosive to yellow metals found in..." that could be a problem.

And as Peter said above...
Original builders picked their oil 60 years ago on the machines we are discussing here
So some things might have changed in the field of lubrication
...and Ross' link confirms, specs, additives and applications have changed in the last 60 years.

I'm comparing a few available AW hydraulic and Turbine oil options in ISO 46.

On the way oil, I always keep a pump oiler at each machine, and apply it in addition to the lube system. I'd rather clean up any extra oil at the end of a project, than run anything dry. The Vactra just seems to tack up too much between some uses, and a squirt or two from the oil can gets things moving again.

Thanks again for all the insights and the education!

--Jon
 
Have a look at the section on GL5 oils......(EP)
I did with interest. I found that this American Petroleum Institute Gear Lubricant "Service Designation" is meant to be applied to automotive not machinery, as it says in their document:

This publication describes API automotive gear lubricant service designations. It is designed to assist manufacturers and users of automotive equipment in the selection of transmission, transaxle, and axle lubricants based on gear design and operating conditions

Incidentally I would not use automotive oil on machinery unless in a contingency with no other options, but let's move ahead of the subject of Extreme Pressure oils.
Surely what Castrol says for their GL-5 (but not GL-4) product regarding yellow (copper based) metals should not be disregarded. We knew since a long time that fuel and oils for old vehicles should be different from the ones sold today.
And I really don't think that the generically defined "EP additives" present in automotive GL-5 are the same as in machinery oil labelled EP, which just defines the application need, not the chemical means by which it is satisfied. In other words, these two letters on the can of a machinery oil do not make me worry the littlest bit.

Moving on about machinery oil, below an example performance level list from a small manufacturer (in my country) of special lubricants from which I intend to purchase in the future. There are no automotive designations in there.
Not a petrol giant name here, fortunately our domestic industry is still present on this market

GEAR EP 32 - 46 - 68 - 100 - 150 - 220 - 320 - 460 - 680 - 1000 - 1500 - 2000 – 2500
MINERAL OIL LUBRICANTS FOR GEARS, GEARBOXES, AXES
  • ISO 12925-1 / ISO 6743-6 CKD/CKC/CKB
    DIN 51517 Part 3 - CLP
  • AGMA 9005-EP
  • CINCINNATI EP GEAR OIL
  • DAVID BROWN S1.53.101
  • NATO CODE O–253 (GEAR EP 68)
  • NATO CODE O–252 (GEAR EP 680)
  • NATO CODE O–258 (GEAR EP 100)
  • SEB 181 226
  • US STEEL 224
This is for the mineral version, I didn't even looked at the synthetic one. Attached the technical sheet in English also.
Toward the bottom the test results about copper corrosion, which is 1b, a pass.

With all that I feel reassured using (EP) machinery oil on my machines.
 

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