View Full Version : Repacking Drill & Circular Saw Gearboxes
11-01-2001, 11:58 PM
Well, I could'nt find anything on this topic in the archives so could someone please advise on the proper procedure.
What I have done is this; 1. Clean out gears and case of old grease. Compressed air helps. 2 Repack using wheel-bearing grease(from a tub). I notice that all the old tools that I have done this to only had a residue of grease around the gears and a film that was deposited on the walls of the case. I felt it best to fill the case to the brim with grease such that it oozes through the edges and screw holes on refitting.
The questions that I would apreciate an answer to are these. 1. Does common wheel-bearing grease offer enough protection to power tool gear boxes? 2. Can too much grease in the case damage the tool ( by overloading the motor)? Thanks.
Common wheel bearing grease is all that I have ever used. Like you, I usually find only a small amount was originally put in there. Sometimes I just re-spread what is in there, when there isn't enough I too pretty well fill it 'to the top'. There is really no damage that can be done (as long as the excess does not squeeze in to the inners of the motor where it will cause sawdust to stick & prevent cooling air circulation. I will say that (even though I do it) filling the gearbox is pretty much unnesessary excess. No harm though.
11-02-2001, 07:36 AM
Asking the manufacturer or a power tool repair guy wouldn't hurt.
11-02-2001, 08:50 AM
Thanks NedL and Tom. The problem with living in HK and not being fluent in Cantonese is that communication over technical matters is fleeting and superficial at best. Case in point- went to pick up an old 7 1/4 inch old Makita saw today that I had brought in for repair. ( It was one of a half dozen saws from a yard of which only 2 worked) It was fried and they just handed it back to me so I took it home and stripped it for parts. Anyway, before I leave I spot a tub of grease lying there and I pick it up and point to my saw and ask him if that was the proper grease to use. The reply I got was "No need, no need"! So there you have it, that's why I come here.
11-02-2001, 02:32 PM
Take a translator next time?
Write/email the mfg?
I should add -- unless what you have is a higher end tool (like a Skill worm drive circular saw that actually uses gear oil in the gear case). It is usually real obvious if gear oil is intended, there is a fill/drain plug and often a little sight glass to visually check the oil level.
11-02-2001, 04:02 PM
Most good tool makers have a lubrication page or comments in the how to use brochure included with a new tool other wise send a note to the manufacturer for a catalog.
There is usually a list of world wide service centers or contacts in the back.
I have made it a practice almost since I began to check the lube in new bought tools.
Lubriplate is a brand of lubricants that I have be happy with over the years.
Be careful with packing too much grease into gear cases as it just might be over kill and cause you problems. I even pack rachet wrenches with grease.
Just clean out the old stuff with kerosene or paint thinner wipe dry and fill.
For me it is about 1/2 of the space in the gear case or whatever the mfg.instructions say. I inherited a Skil 1/4 inch drill from one of my mentors and just for the hell of it I opened the gear case behind the chuck, careful with that too! You can find your self crawling around on the floor looking for a gear.
Well that gear case was just as if the tool had come off the factory floor and I know that Matt had had that drill since 1939.
But he was a bit anal about stuff like that and he attitude transferred itself over to me, I'm thinking.
11-02-2001, 10:14 PM
Lubriplate is excellent stuff for this usage if you can get it: it was developed for it. Wheel bearing grease will also do well, of course. Overpacking may be a problem, since grease will not flow into areas it is not in contact with, under normal circumstances, unlike oil. Repacking bearings is a different operation from greasing gears, by the way - are you familiar with how 2 do it?
11-03-2001, 12:47 AM
There was a little shop next door to Anthony W.K. Wong's yard in Aberdeen where I took all my stuff to be overhauled and sharpened. The upstairs area was shared one side by the tool guy and the other side by Rolly Tasker sails....Nice place .....that's where I met sweet thing # I, her dad was there having some work done........How's the abalone at the floating restaraunt these days....or is it priced out of sight?
11-03-2001, 01:26 AM
Paladin, you just HAD to mention Abalone did'nt ya???
Last good ab. was had up around Eureka in 1995 caught, pried, gotten by free diver.
11-03-2001, 11:24 AM
Well, having gone through a room full of heavily used power tools ( see my A.King yard post)here is a summary of the condition of the tools. 1.Circular saws- 6 pieces of which only 2 work (a 16 inch Makita in excellent condition and a 15 Hitachi in v. good condition). The others looked ok- turned over but would'nt fire. 2. Belt sanders- 3inch wide.Makita and Hitachi. Both unusable due to bearing falure, one with a bent axle. 3. Power planers Makita 1600- 2 pieces. Both had sticky bearings, both since unstuck. 4. 5/8ths inch drills- 2 pieces. One Hitachi in good condition. Other made-in-China had frozen bearings. 5. Finish sander- Bosch frozen bearings.
Based on the sample of aforementioned tools it would seem that, as far as circ. saws are concerned, the motor is the weak link in the unit. As for the other power tools bearing failure ( due to long storage?) was the culprit. So, (as a general conclusion) if overpacking of the gearbox causes excess friction resulting in the overloading of the motor then this practice ought to be avoided.
The cost of decent used tools here (U.S$10 - 50) is such that having an old tool repaired is not justifiable. I am capable of replacing bearings myself but am clueless and a bit scared of things electric.
Paladin, Never could afford abalone back when or now. I'm quite happy with a plate of fried rice with salt fish and a beer.
11-04-2001, 01:32 AM
One of my best recent experiences in HK was a side trip to Cheung Chau. Ya get off the ferry, look up - and there's MacDonald's looming over you. No kidding. Next door is 7-11, with Kentucky Fried down the street. After that, and the HK cop staring icily at you, it's almost heaven - there are no cars on Cheung Chau. Walk around the harbor - dinner at this funky place under a plastic-tarp tent. Rice and shrimp - big shrimp, lots of them, and TsingTao beer, right on the waterfront, with the house cat staring imploringly at you. Less than $10 US. Best meal I had in HK, best meal anywhere in a long time. Wonderful experience, right on the harbor.
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