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Installing Pedals for the first time - Lithium Grease Ok?

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Installing Pedals for the first time - Lithium Grease Ok?

Old 06-18-17, 11:47 AM
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Installing Pedals for the first time - Lithium Grease Ok?

Hi everyone!

I recently bought my first road bike and I have been using platform pedals for the past month on it. I like to learn to do things on my own and I will be installing my pedals as soon as I get my cycling shoes for them.

I was looking around my house for some grease to use and I found: Lubriplate AERO Multi Purpose Lithium Grease.

Looked on amazon and here is the description:
Lubriplate Aero, L0113-086, CTN 36 1 Oz Tubes LUBRIPLATE AERO LUBRIPLATE Aero is a neutral lithium base lubricant, manufactured with a light viscosity mineral oil that remains plastic down to -70F, has an ASTM Dropping Point of over 350F and is an NLGI No. 1 consistency. LUBRIPLATE Aero is recommended for a large variety of applications: Trailer landing gear cases Speedometers, odometers and tachometers Parking meters -- Change boxes Instruments -- Gaming machines Garage and door opening mechanisms Cables of various types Steering columns and gear cases TV antenna gear boxes O-Ring and seal lubrication Railway switch and signal equipment Advantages - Low Torque start-up capability - Corrosion and oxidation resistant - Long lasting film strength over a wide temperature range - Outstanding aniline point of base oil offers excellent compatibility with exotic metals, plastics and rubber materials Typical Tests Type of Base Lithium Worked Penetration @ 77F 310 to 340 NLGI No. 1 Mineral Oil Viscosity SUS @ 100F 100 cSt @ 40C 19 Aniline Point 205+ ASTM Dropping Point 381F/194C Norma Hoffman Oxidation Bomb Less than 5 psi/1000 Hours Color Off-White Return Policy Returns Our policy lasts 30 days. If 30 days have gone by since your purchase, unfortunately we can't offer you a refund or exchange. To be eligible for a return, your item must be unused and in the same condition that you received it. It must also be in the original packaging. If a seal of a tote, drum, pail, or case is damaged, you will not be eligible for a return. Re-stocking fee applies to all eligible products for return. The re-stocking fee is estimated to be 20 % of the value of the product. All food graded goods are exempt from being returned. To complete your return, we require a receipt or proof of purchase. Please do not send your purchase back without written authorization, granted by Miles Lubricants LLC.
Would this be ok to use for my pedals or should I look around to see if I have any other grease in my house or buy something else?
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Old 06-18-17, 11:48 AM
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It should work fine.
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Old 06-18-17, 11:50 AM
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Is it any worry that it is considered "low temperature grease"
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Old 06-18-17, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by bazap
Is it any worry that it is considered "low temperature grease"
No. Bikes don't operate at what the grease companies consider "high temperature."
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Old 06-18-17, 11:56 AM
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Originally Posted by corrado33
No. Bikes don't operate at what the grease companies consider "high temperature."
Ok thats great.

I also have found some White Lithium Grease, although it does appear to be a bit old (5-10 yrs maybe?) while the previous grease I mentioned is brand new. I doubt it goes bad but just thought I would mention it.

When I do apply it do I just put it on my finger and rub it on the threads on the crank and pedal?
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Old 06-18-17, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by bazap
Ok thats great.

I also have found some White Lithium Grease, although it does appear to be a bit old (5-10 yrs maybe?) while the previous grease I mentioned is brand new. I doubt it goes bad but just thought I would mention it.

When I do apply it do I just put it on my finger and rub it on the threads on the crank and pedal?
I use white lithium grease for pedals all the time. Yes, you can use your finger, as far as I'm concerned.

You say you're new to this bicycle mechanic stuff, so be sure to note that there is a left pedal and a right pedal and that you turn BOTH left and right pedals toward the Front of the bike to Fasten, and the Rear of the bike to Remove! Failure to do so will strip the pedal threads.

Have fun!
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Old 06-18-17, 12:37 PM
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You won't know you have a problem until you attempt to remove the pedals. Because of the dissimilar metals, nickel based anti-seize compound is better and will prevent corrosion. It's available at many farm supply stores and good hardware stores.
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Old 06-18-17, 04:45 PM
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I agree with the above that Lithium will work just fine but I would remove the pedals a couple of times a year to make sure they don't seize due to galvanic action.

Anklework's suggestion above for nickel-based anti-seize is good but that stuff is pretty expensive unless you buy a blister-pack size...as is the copper-based anti-seize but they do work admirably well. I have those as well as the aluminum-based anti-seize and that's what I use on my bike. I reserve the nickel and copper anti-seizes for my old sports car.
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Old 06-18-17, 05:50 PM
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I guess I should have mentioned that I have a steel mountain bike. In that case, perhaps my endorsement of white lithium grease is misguided. Sorry. My bad.
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Old 06-18-17, 05:59 PM
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Don't worry, you'll be fine.

I've been fooling with bikes for over 50 years. I dab whatever grease I have handy when I install pedals. In all that time I've never had a pedal that I couldn't get off.

FWIW, usually the left pedal has an "L" stamped somewhere on the spindle. Other pedals have a series of lines stamped into them to indicate the left hand thread.
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Old 06-18-17, 06:22 PM
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Thanks guys for all the tips.

One more question: Do i really need to go out and buy a torque wrench to get the installation right or can I just feel it out without going overly tight?
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Old 06-18-17, 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted by bazap
Thanks guys for all the tips.

One more question: Do i really need to go out and buy a torque wrench to get the installation right or can I just feel it out without going overly tight?
Now that I have a couple I use torque wrenches on bottom brackets, cranks and high dollar stems. Everything else i just guess at. Pedals you want to get pretty snug.
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Old 06-18-17, 07:00 PM
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Originally Posted by bazap
Thanks guys for all the tips.

One more question: Do i really need to go out and buy a torque wrench to get the installation right or can I just feel it out without going overly tight?
just tighten them so they are screwed in.. you don't need to tighten them down.

also I use teflon tape instead. less messy
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Old 06-19-17, 10:25 AM
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Thanks everyone, just installed my pedals. Feels good to do this on my own

Last edited by bazap; 06-19-17 at 10:36 AM.
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Old 06-19-17, 10:40 AM
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Pedals are being installed. Let's not confuse that with bearing loads for balls in races in industrial or mechanized applications. The point here is the grease is being used as an anti-seize.

I've got a high dollar dial torque wrench and I've never used it with a crow's foot to check the torque. Snug is snug. Save the torque wrench for stems, cranks, bottom brackets, top caps etc.

My favorite pedal wrenches are the Var and the old Professional yellow Pedro's, haven't used the new black one yet. I despise my Park professional pedal wrench. It's a preference thing. The angles are just "off" to me.
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Old 06-19-17, 12:18 PM
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Won't the pedals get tighter as they're used? Isn't that one of the reasons that they both tighten by turning the spindles toward the front of the bike?
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Old 06-19-17, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by philbob57
Won't the pedals get tighter as they're used? Isn't that one of the reasons that they both tighten by turning the spindles toward the front of the bike?
If you observe the pedal itself, it actually spins BACKWARDS (or rearwards) as you pedal forward. Counterclockwise on the drive side and clockwise on the non-drive side. Thus, if your pedal bearing freezes stuck, the pedal will actually loosen itself as you pedal forward (a good thing, rather than breaking your ankle). To my understanding, this is why the pedal threads are as they are.
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Old 06-21-17, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by hokiefyd
If you observe the pedal itself, it actually spins BACKWARDS (or rearwards) as you pedal forward. Counterclockwise on the drive side and clockwise on the non-drive side. Thus, if your pedal bearing freezes stuck, the pedal will actually loosen itself as you pedal forward (a good thing, rather than breaking your ankle). To my understanding, this is why the pedal threads are as they are.
That's true, but the motion and pressure cycles do actually serve to exert a tightening force on the pedal, not a loosening force. I'm afraid I'm not going to be able to explain it particularly well....but there's a Sheldon Brown article on it somewhere.
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Old 06-21-17, 11:09 AM
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Don't over tighten them, or you will have problems down the line. They tend to get a little tighter in use.
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Old 06-21-17, 11:11 AM
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The bearing balls reverse the force. Your pedal looks like it is rotating clockwise from the crank reference (DS) but the bearing reverses that force to the spindle because it is rotating the opposite direction to the pedal race.

It is all reletive.
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Old 06-21-17, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Abe_Froman
I'm afraid I'm not going to be able to explain it particularly well....but there's a Sheldon Brown article on it somewhere.
Here ya go! https://www.sheldonbrown.com/brandt/left.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precession_(mechanical)
Clif Notes version: "It's Complicated!"

BTW, the left-handed threads on the NDS pedal are generally attributed to the Wright brothers! (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wright_Cycle_Company)
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