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Collection, Preservation and Display of Old Lawn Mowers

Workshop question - Q/R Vice lubrication?

I've just finished stripping and cleaning a Woden Q/R engineers/fitters vice (around 3" jaw, 6" capacity).

The slide was a big stiff, so I've carefully filed it true, parallel and smooth, and the motion is now very nice - free with little slop.

Next step, reassemble, mount for a workmate.

But for use - what's the best lubrication for the ways, thread/half nut, and screw-to-jaw contact?

Looking around my workshop, house and garage I found the following:

  • Duckhams Keenol grease
  • Hypoid gear oil EP80/90
  • Car Engine oil SAE20/50
  • Lawnmower engine oil SAE30 (bought recently!!)
  • 3-in-1
  • GT85 (PTFE) cycle chain lubricant
  • Candle wax
  • washing up liquid
  • soap

Which would be best, and for what?


hillsider Thu, 13/04/2017

To lubricate your vice you can use either the 20/50 or the 30 grade oils (either will make a good oil can oil) but don't over do it as it will just run off. Three in one oil will do the job but it is a bit light for the task, Grease or Sae 90 will be rather heavy and make the vice stiff to operate, The spray lube is ideal for cleaning the body of the vice and preventing surface corrosion from forming on any bright parts. 

The remaining items on your list will not do any good at all on your vice so forget them as a lubricant, washing up liquid contains salt so not much help preventing rust, If you have a wooden cabinet the candle could be used to rub on the drawer runners to help them slide.