Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.
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  1. #1
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    Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Hi everyone ,

    Question on what to use as a good oil for my Lathe. Ive heard different opinions on what is a good lubricant for using to oil down my machine and keep lubed up.Question is (Is one better than the other) I used some air tool oil I had laying around on the ways and spindle and genetally whipped down the hole machine with it she had been sitting for awhile before I bought her.Should I invest in some machine oil or is the air tool oil ok for the job. Also what does everyone else use as a cutting oil and for lube when machining general I was at harbor freight and came across a couple different oils .

    1. Air tool oil.

    2. Hydrolic Oil.

    3. Compressor Oil.

    Any thoughts , Suggestions, Advice, on which would be best as an all purpose oil for my Lathe .
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  2. #2
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Follow the makers recommendation for the spindle and apron lube (usually a very pure non-detergent similar to air compressor oil).

    For the way oils Vactra #2 (mobile) or equivalent is used (these lube have anti-stick/slip properties and are heavy enough for way wipers to work correctly).

    Matt

  3. #3
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    I don't know about using any of the oils you listed. I'd look up the recommendation in your manual.

    I use Mobil VACTRA OIL NO. 2 Way Oil on three of my machines which is very common. It's SAE Grade 30, ISO Viscosity Grade 68. I have one lathe that specified a Shell Tonna V (I think) which appears stickier than the Vactra 2.

    Your likely looking for an ISO 68 way oil, Shell is Tonna, Mobile is Vactra, Cheveron is Vistac.

  4. #4
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Thanks guys weres the best place to pick some of that up at?

  5. #5
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Heres the machine I bought its a 1946 Logan 700A.
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  6. #6
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Quote Originally Posted by bullgod6998 View Post
    Thanks guys wheres the best place to pick some of that up at?
    I order mine from MSC, a gallon should last a few years.
    http://www1.mscdirect.com/CGI/NNSRIT...MT4NO=96421171

    Quote Originally Posted by bullgod6998 View Post
    Heres the machine I bought its a 1946 Logan 700A.
    Nice, looks very clean and well cared for.

  7. #7
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Thanks I will order some this weekend. Anything I could use until it gets here to keep it lubed up ? It was VERY well maintained was sitting in a basement for the last 25 years looks like brand new cant believe I got it for $500

  8. #8
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    I used to have a Logan 820, made in 1946 also, that took SAE 20(I think) oil at all the service points. Can't tell from your picture what type of long/cross feed mechanism is on the apron. Mine had a clutch that engaged a worm/wormgear that drew power off lead screw for the feeds. This assembly needed to be bathed in oil always or you'd be looking to buy $600 of parts.

    Your's might be the miter gear set up, check it out though.

  9. #9
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Logan FAQ: http://www.lathe.com/faq/index.html

    Oil instructions (copied from above site):
    http://www.lathe.com/faq/index.html#_Toc95180285
    2.14. What should I use for oiling the lathe? Oil level in reservoir?

    2.14 There are many places on your lathe that require frequent lubrication. Check your Logan manual for a listing of oil points. Logan manuals can be bought from Logan Actuator.

    The ways (bed) of the lathe should be lubricated with a heavy, sticky oil called way lube. This is available in a few different viscosities (thicknesses). The right oil for Logan lathes is ISO VG-68 oil such as Mobil Vactra No. 2, Exxon Febis K68, Shell Tonna T68, Sun Way Lubricant 1180, Texaco Way Lubricant 68, Gulf Gulfway 68, or Chevron Vistac Oil 68X. These oils are available from most industrial suppliers like MSC and cost under $15 per gallon. Don’t substitute. Use true way lube and apply it with a clean cloth every time you use the lathe.

    All other oil spots on the Logan Lathe can be oiled with ISO 22 grade spindle oil or SAE 10-weight non-detergent motor oil. Don’t use common “detergent” motor oil. You can get SAE 10-weight non-detergent motor oil from large automotive parts dealers for under $2 per quart. You can get ISO 22 grade spindle oil from industrial suppliers like MSC for under $10 per gallon.

  10. #10
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Went and talked to a local machine shop and I got a gallon of SAE 10 weight non-detergent oil for the ways and counter shaft and half nut spindle bearing etc and a quart of 15-50 SAE detegent free oil for the gearbox.

  11. #11
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    I've got a South Bend 10K. SB specifies FOUR different types of oils (A, B, C and Bed Way Lube) and ONE special purpose teflon grease. Then there's the spindle oil for the mill...different from the others. Real PITA. At least now I'll never run out of oil cans.

    See link....

    http://www.wswells.com/partslist/lub...chart_6503.pdf
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  12. #12
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    I use Mobil 1 gear oil on my SB 9.
    GL-5 gear oil (synthetic or not) contains sulfur additives that help prevent erosion in metal to metal sliding surfaces such as in your spindle, the ends of your leadscrew, etc., by forming a strong film. Unfortunately, the smell is awful.
    Gear oils without the sulfur (typically GL-4), don't have the smell, but don't form as good a film, however, the sulfur additives can corrode brass, so if you have brass bushings, then be careful what you use (and 50W ND engine oil might be good for that then).

    Way oil is pretty much the same stuff, but includes additives to make it tackier (which is really designed for chain drive stuff, to keep it from flying off). It'll require less frequent application (since it sticks around better), but won't work any better, and isn't something you can likely pick up locally.

    Air tool oil is very lightweight, and is not designed to stay in a tool (it's constantly being replenished). Very bad choice.

    Jack oil is specially designed for hydraulic applications (prevent foaming, additives to protect rubber seals, etc). Lubricity is not critical for its intended use, so it is also a bad choice.

    Compressor oil is just ND-30 API SA oil (just about the cheapest and worst lubricating oil you can buy), marked up 3000%. Synthetic compressor oil's markup is even worse.
    I actually use Mobil 1 5W-30 in my compressor, and a number of compressor manufacturers actually recommend that particular oil for continuous duty service.

  13. #13
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Anyone got a suggestion for a good 30wt non-detergent oil for my lathe? Manufacturer says 30wt non-detergent motor oil would work, but I'd like to get some other opinions as to what you all use as well. Machine is a Smithy Midas 1220 LTD.
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  14. #14
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    SAE 30 is equivalent to ISO 100, so you might consider Mobil DTE Heavy. McMaster also sells gallons of ISO 100 hydraulic oil for $25.

  15. #15
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Thanks, I'm pretty sure my Grainger can order that Mobil and I can just pick it up.

    Hmm, I just remembered. The air compressor oil that I order from Amsoil is ISO 100/ SAE 30/40wt. Do I hear any objections?

    Last edited by Oscar; 04-17-2018 at 05:34 PM.

  16. #16
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    None. That sounds perfect.

  17. #17
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    There's always confusion when it comes to machine oils.

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    The marketing guys sell the fancy stuff, or you can simply use a good quality AW Hydraulic Oil in the proper ISO viscosity.

    Hydraulic oil has excellent demulsability in most cases. They're designed to be used in potentially water contaminated conditions (condensation in supply tanks, etc). Agricultural type oils excel at this. That fancy "way oil" touts the same capability.

    Most spindle bearings on the older lathes spec a 20W oil, which is the same as ISO 46 hydraulic oil.....which is non detergent.

    Oil detergents...................it simply means that the oil TRAPS particles so a filter can remove them. YOU DON'T WANT THIS IN A MACHINE TOOL. Last thing you want is your oil carrying chips.

    You also need to determine the operating temperatures in your shop. If the machine is to be run at lower ambient temps, it should be lubed with a lighter oil. I lube the ways on my milling machine with ISO 32 during the Winter, then shift to ISO 46 when the shop temp climbs to 115 degrees in the Summer.
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  18. #18
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    The main thing with oil IS TO KEEP IT OILED. Doesn't hurt to oil it more, if it's in heavy use for extended periods. Daily oiling isn't always the best, do it during the day a few times if you're using it a lot.

    If you're using coolant, excessive oiling can shorten the life of the coolant (tramp oil contamination), but replacing coolant occasionally, is cheaper than having a machine rebuilt when the ways go to Hell.
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  19. #19
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    The non detergent is for the gearbox on SMITHY. I think you have a side cover to remove the used oil on a SMITHY.

    I would use the AMSOIL in the apron and service points but way oil was recommended. SMITHY said they use transmission fluid mixed with WD-40 in service zirks. I'm currently using straight tranny fluid.
    Last edited by Insaneride; 04-18-2018 at 11:16 AM.
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  20. #20
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Quote Originally Posted by farmersamm View Post
    There's always confusion when it comes to machine oils.


    The marketing guys sell the fancy stuff, or you can simply use a good quality AW Hydraulic Oil in the proper ISO viscosity.

    Hydraulic oil has excellent demulsability in most cases. They're designed to be used in potentially water contaminated conditions (condensation in supply tanks, etc). Agricultural type oils excel at this. That fancy "way oil" touts the same capability.

    Most spindle bearings on the older lathes spec a 20W oil, which is the same as ISO 46 hydraulic oil.....which is non detergent.

    Oil detergents...................it simply means that the oil TRAPS particles so a filter can remove them. YOU DON'T WANT THIS IN A MACHINE TOOL. Last thing you want is your oil carrying chips.

    You also need to determine the operating temperatures in your shop. If the machine is to be run at lower ambient temps, it should be lubed with a lighter oil. I lube the ways on my milling machine with ISO 32 during the Winter, then shift to ISO 46 when the shop temp climbs to 115 degrees in the Summer.
    Thank you for that chart, I can understand things a lot more clearly now. The "shop" is just an empty unused room in my house, so it will always be climate controlled to about 74-76°F. It's interesting to see that 30wt SAE motor oil is approximately equal to 85wt sae gear oil. Would that imply that I could perhaps use Amsoil 75w-90 Synthetic gear lube oil as well, in place of the 30wt sae engine oil?

    Quote Originally Posted by Insaneride View Post
    The non detergent is for the gearbox on SMITHY. I think you have a side cover to remove the used oil on a SMITHY.

    I would use the AMSOIL in the apron and service points but way oil was recommended. SMITHY said they use transmission fluid mixed with WD-40 in service zirks. I'm currently using straight tranny fluid.
    I had bought Mobil Vactra #2 for the ways when I bought the machine since Smithy service tech it was the way to go if available, so I'm definitely using that. Real sticky stuff. A gallon cost me $25 so it was a no brainer there. Got it from High Quality Tools Inc now that I think about it. Right now I used a very light oil like WD-40 in the service zerks so they could let it drip out to sort of "clean them out". I think it's a gallon of Liquid Wrench, so it's thin but not too thin like actual wd40. Gonna keep pressuring it out and then I'll pump in some Amsoil ISO46/SAE20 wt oil for regular use. I'll just keep an extra quart of the 30/40wt compressor oil for when I need to change out the gear box.
    Last edited by Oscar; 04-19-2018 at 03:21 PM.
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  21. #21
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    How would bar and chain oil work on the ways? Certainly sticky enough and available in different viscosity.

  22. #22
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Bar oil ? Bad to the bone, I bet ! I may be wrong but I can't imagine most machine tools have to deal with forces on par with this.
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  23. #23
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Quote Originally Posted by M J D View Post
    How would bar and chain oil work on the ways? Certainly sticky enough and available in different viscosity.
    Good quality bar oil is fine. The main requirements for bar oil and way oil are the viscosity and "tackifiers" to make it sticky. The cheap bar oil I have seen recently is gray in color (instead of amber), thin, and smells like 90 wt. gear lube. Pretty sure it's recycled waste oil. I'm using reclaimed way oil (Vactra #2) for bar oil. Hard to tell the difference.
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  24. #24
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    The brand name bar oils sold now remind me of the original STP.. You might end up with a shellac like layer on down the road. I'm liking the newer bar oil but keep in mind it's going to thicken & stiffen up with time setting in an open air environment.
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  25. #25
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    Re: Machine, Lathe, Tool Oil.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mrwhoopee View Post
    Good quality bar oil is fine. The main requirements for bar oil and way oil are the viscosity and "tackifiers" to make it sticky. The cheap bar oil I have seen recently is gray in color (instead of amber), thin, and smells like 90 wt. gear lube. Pretty sure it's recycled waste oil. I'm using reclaimed way oil (Vactra #2) for bar oil. Hard to tell the difference.
    As you mentioned there are some very poor bar oils on the market these days. Bar oil should be pretty tacky to stay in place at speed. Modern Vactra #2 doesn't have the tackifiers it once did. For way oil on my manually oiled machines I switched to Mobil Vacuoline 1409. It is tacky as expected. I run Vactra #2 (or Tonna S3) on the CNC machines as it separates from the coolant well and these machines all have auto lube systems.

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