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  1. #1
    Senior Member EGreen's Avatar
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    When is Grease Essential?

    I just set up my beater/utility road bike with a nice new stem and bars (aluminum alloy) with aero brakes. Looks sweet! It occurs to me that I didn't use even a dab of grease for the job.

    Should I unscrew, disassemble everything and grease it up?

    I can be sort of lazy sometimes but if I have to I will.

  2. #2
    Gone, but not forgotten Sheldon Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EGreen View Post
    I just set up my beater/utility road bike with a nice new stem and bars (aluminum alloy) with aero brakes. Looks sweet! It occurs to me that I didn't use even a dab of grease for the job.

    Should I unscrew, disassemble everything and grease it up?
    Yes!!!

    Sheldon "The Glory That Was Grease" Brown
    [COLOR=blue][CENTER][b]Harris Cyclery, West Newton, Massachusetts[/b]
    Phone 617-244-9772, FAX 617-244-1041
    [URL= http://harriscyclery.com] http://harriscyclery.com[/URL]
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  3. #3
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    If you have quill-stem, then a very thin layer of grease is pretty much required. Or else after a while, corrosion between the quill and steerer tube will pretty much weld the two together. I've also had mysterious squeaks coming from the brake-levers when putting weight on them in the hills...

  4. #4
    Senior Member fender1's Avatar
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    Grease is essential in any activy (bike building included) that requires an agent to reduce friction.

  5. #5
    Senior Member tt1106's Avatar
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    Reduces friction, helps fight corrosion. You decide.

  6. #6
    Retro-nerd georgiaboy's Avatar
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    Especially good for mixing metals. Alum screws in steel frame...etc.
    Would you like a dream with that?

  7. #7
    Senior Member EGreen's Avatar
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    Oh okay, if I have to

    Thanks guys!

  8. #8
    that bike nut BikingGrad80's Avatar
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    Whenever you work on your bike have a tub of grease right next to you. Apply it to any bolt, thread, seat post, stem wherever. The only places not to grease are the rims, obviously, and tapers on square taper bottom bracket [debatable?]. Any others?

  9. #9
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    Grease is interesting stuff. For years I thought grease was just thick oil, but it is not.
    Grease has a thickening agent called "soap", there are several agents such as lithium, urea and others.
    Fine quality thin oil is mixed with these thickeners, the oil is contained and allowed to be present at the wear areas, where plain oil would drain away.
    On precision machine tool bearings, the amount of grease is critical, generally never more then 1/3 fill, otherwise friction and heat will result.
    So, it may be wise to service items more often then completely fill up with grease and leave it for 20yrs. Grease does break down, I would say clean out and service at 5 years max and 1 year on hubs and BB.
    There is many qualities of grease, from the auto store $3 a gun tube to a $100 for 30cc such as from Barden.
    http://www.bardenbearings.com/scan%2...20brochure.pdf
    There are other less expensive precision ultra filtered grease, such as Kluber multiflex and some from Dow Corning.
    These can be had from major bearing houses, but dont say its for bicycles, say its for angular contact bearings and low speed application.
    These greases are not made for public consumption, most are toxic, use a barrier cream on your hands!
    Better Living Through Chemistry!

    Don
    Last edited by HDFACTORYCERTIF; 08-20-07 at 03:52 PM.

  10. #10
    James
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    Some may argue about greasing carbon seat posts. Whatever the case, I use tacx carbon paste for that.

  11. #11
    Your mom
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    You need grease if you ever want to move that stem again.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by EGreen View Post
    Oh okay, if I have to

    Thanks guys!
    You don't HAVE to but please don't come back in a year or two with a posting asking "how do I get my stuck (fill in the component) off of my bike?"

  13. #13
    Bill
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    Try an experiment to see if lubrication is as important as these so called experts are telling you. Drain all of the oil out of your car and drive it around but for no longer than a week to minimize possible damage. Let us know the results.

  14. #14
    Senior Member mike's Avatar
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    Grease is essential in making good frosting. Well, shortening anyway, and that's grease too.
    Mike

  15. #15
    cab horn
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    Come on. Stuck components mean you never have to worry about someone stealing them!
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

  16. #16
    Senior Member stokessd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikingGrad80 View Post
    Whenever you work on your bike have a tub of grease right next to you. Apply it to any bolt, thread, seat post, stem wherever. The only places not to grease are the rims, obviously, and tapers on square taper bottom bracket [debatable?]. Any others?
    I don't grease handlebar tape, but other than that, I super thin film of grease is your friend, with all exposed grease wiped away.

    DT (I think) used to sell a spoke thread lube as well, it was a dip that you would use and let dry before building the wheel.

    Sheldon

  17. #17
    Dr.Deltron
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikingGrad80 View Post
    Whenever you work on your bike have a tub of grease right next to you. Apply it to any bolt, thread, seat post, stem wherever.
    +1!

    Quote Originally Posted by BikingGrad80 View Post
    The only places not to grease are the rims, obviously, and tapers on square taper bottom bracket [debatable?]. Any others?
    I DO apply a very thin coat of grease to square tapers, but I DON'T grease the threads of the bolts that hold cantilever arms to the bike. I use Loc-Tite so that the bolts don't have to be tightened too much.
    But I do grease the pivots!

  18. #18
    Dr.Deltron
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    Quote Originally Posted by stokessd View Post
    DT (I think) used to sell a spoke thread lube as well, it was a dip that you would use and let dry before building the wheel.
    I think that was made by (or marketed by) Wheelsmith. It's called Spoke Prep.
    But linseed oil will work quite well too!

  19. #19
    Gone, but not forgotten Sheldon Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Deltron View Post
    I DO apply a very thin coat of grease to square tapers, but I DON'T grease the threads of the bolts that hold cantilever arms to the bike. I use Loc-Tite so that the bolts don't have to be tightened too much.
    Ooooh, I strongly disagree! I'm not an absolutist about greasing the tapers, but it is REALLY important to grease the threads and the undersides of the bolt heads. Otherwise, too much of the applied torque is wasted overcoming friction, rather than pulling the crank onto the spindle.

    Loctite has a very few uses on bicycles, and this is definitely NOT one of them!

    Sheldon "Grease!" Brown
    [COLOR=blue][CENTER][b]Harris Cyclery, West Newton, Massachusetts[/b]
    Phone 617-244-9772, FAX 617-244-1041
    [URL= http://harriscyclery.com] http://harriscyclery.com[/URL]
    Hard-to-find parts shipped Worldwide
    [URL=http://captainbike.com]http://captainbike.com[/URL]
    Useful articles about bicycles and cycling
    [URL=http://sheldonbrown.com]http://sheldonbrown.com[/URL] [/CENTER] [/COLOR]

  20. #20
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Deltron View Post
    I use Loc-Tite so that the bolts don't have to be tightened too much.
    It is VERY important that the crank fixing bolts be tightened to the proper spec during initial installation and it's NOT so the bolts don't loosen.

    This same discussion is going on in another thread here: "Grease the BB spindle/axle?" One poster referenced an article by Jobst Brandt that's reproduced on Sheldon Brown's web site detailing just why this is so critical. Here is the URL: http://sheldonbrown.com/brandt/installing-cranks.html

  21. #21
    My bike's better than me! neil0502's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fender1 View Post
    Grease is essential in any activy (bike building included) that requires an agent to reduce friction.
    Agent: "a person or business authorized to act on another's behalf"

    Uh ... this is something I'd prefer to do personally, ya' know?

  22. #22
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    I've seen a couple "grease everything but the brakes and bars" comments above, and thought I'd ask this: I've always understood that threadless stems shouldn't be greased (where they mount to the steerer tube), because they can slip while riding. Makes sense to me, and I've never seen an ungreased stem bonding to a steerer...but I've been wrong before. What's the word?

  23. #23
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    Every threaded fastener should be lubricated, but they don't need grease. Oil is fine.

    But, all bearings, quill stems, seat posts and cables need grease.
    Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

    1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
    1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
    1988 Ducati 750 F1

  24. #24
    Light Makes Right GV27's Avatar
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    Anti-Sieze

    What about anti-seize? Coming from car/moto wrenching I tend to use anti-seize on threaded fasteners. Any opinions on where/when to use anti-seize and pros/cons vs oil and grease?

    Thanks,

    C

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by GV27 View Post
    What about anti-seize? Coming from car/moto wrenching I tend to use anti-seize on threaded fasteners. Any opinions on where/when to use anti-seize and pros/cons vs oil and grease?

    Thanks,

    C
    I think its overkill on a bike. Anti seize is usually for high temp, dissimilar metals aplications which don't exist with bikes.
    Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

    1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
    1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
    1988 Ducati 750 F1

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