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Hawg

Do Grease Zerts Even Work?

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Time to grease the pivots and replace cables on the house for next year. I was thinking of 4 more zerts on each side around the pivot but then started to wonder if they even work. It's a Miltona trailer so construction is great but there's always a lot of corrosion every 3 years when I clean out the pivots. I've always thought they were a false sense of security, what do you guys think. I just don't think the grease travels around inside well enough. I'm also curious what you use for grease, I'm thinking thinner is better.

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I believe most folks would wholeheartedly support grease ZERKS and their purpose.  It is likely many folks overlook them and of course that will create problems.   Keep them clean and hit 'em with a squeeze or two of the right grease for the purpose and odds are you will not have a problem in that area. I suspect too many ZERKS are neglected.

Others will help advise you on this as I am not familiar with the use you are considering, but there is no question grease ZERKS serve a purpose.

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Synthetic! I haven't lost a trailer bearing in almost 20 years since switching. I've been using Mobil1, easily sourced from fleet farm. Asmoil has some interesting industrial greases too. One especially tenacious grease resists "pound out" very well. 

 

If there is an area not getting grease, another zerk wouldn't hurt. I would consider working the pivots in between a few greasings to really work it in and flush out junk. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Get some Low Temp bearing grease and shoot some in as you bring it up and down in different spots to work it around like 1968 suggested.

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They work really well, but need to be use frequently.  Mobil 1 is my grease of choice.  What you may look at doing, if you haven't already, is grinding a groove in the shaft for the grease to have a place to set.  

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Also make sure the zerk is clean before you grease or you will force dirt into it and even plug the zerk. 

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When I get my frames one of the first things I do is pull the Pivot tube off the stub shaft and grind grooves in the stub shafts and apply Permatex Anti seize grease. Its not effected by temperature and every other yr when I take them apart, the grease isnt just a black solid mess. I just clean with a little bit of brake cleaner and reapply the anti seize.

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Posted (edited)

LRG & 1lessdog, the different greases are usually for spinning bearings or friction applications. I’m wondering What extra good do the grooves do? Our application is more for anti seizing / rusting prevention right? Seems the Permatex Anti Seize makes as much sense as any and avoids the black glob mess too. Is it thick enough to stay in pivot without leeching out? I do mine every 2-3 years and I hate doing it, super   messy. I usually use a wire brush and drill get corrosion cleaned up also. 

Edited by Hawg

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1 hour ago, Hawg said:

 Is it thick enough to stay in pivot without leeching out?

 

Hey, watch it there Pal! :angry:  It's migrate, without migrating out! ;) 

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Shaft groves allow grease to migrate entire axel shaft & sleeve. Weight of house prevents migration. Ice Castle had a big issue with this a few years back. Mine also rusted ttogether & i needed to cut the sleve off the axel shaft. No issurs in 2 years with groved shaft. Groves look like a level wind reel shaft. 

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Papa, how many years did you have it before it rusted tight? Just curious, i do it every 2-3 years and it never got that bad 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, papadarv said:

Shaft groves allow grease to migrate entire axel shaft & sleeve. Weight of house prevents migration. Ice Castle had a big issue with this a few years back. Mine also rusted ttogether & i needed to cut the sleve off the axel shaft. No issurs in 2 years with groved shaft. Groves look like a level wind reel shaft. 

 The grooves I think helps alot. Keeps 75% of the grease on the shaft. But I think the anti seize grease helps more.

 

 

I had a frame about 6 yrs ago that the  pivot point seized up and I had a hell of a time getting them apart. It took me about 6 hr to get them both a part. I used my 4 wheeler and winch and hooked a nylon sling to the pivot point and tightened the winch real tight and then would move the axle system up and down. You only let that happen once. Trust me

Edited by 1lessdog

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5 hours ago, Hawg said:

Papa, how many years did you have it before it rusted tight? Just curious, i do it every 2-3 years and it never got that bad 

Rust froze about 60% of the shaft to sleeve at start of second season. I thought greasing annually was enough. Bad thought. Steel on steel squeezes grease out permitting rust. Grease has one function in this application, prevent rust as sleeve only does ¼ turn. I now grease before &after season and once mid summer no issues in past 3 years. Groves holds grease and applies to lands on each ¼ turn. My house outside all time & not used off season. LRG righo on, grease often. 

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Friend of mine learned the expensive way this season that grease is really cheap and easy maintenance compared to frame/axle repairs. At minimum grease after season to push out water, salt, etc that's made its way in throughout the winter.

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Posted (edited)

It’s todays project. I have to think Something is built wrong if it takes 3 teardowns a year. Grease zerts yes but not 3 complete teardowns. 

Edited by Hawg

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On ‎3‎/‎16‎/‎2018 at 8:56 AM, Hawg said:

It’s todays project. I have to think Something is built wrong if it takes 3 teardowns a year. Grease zerts yes but not 3 complete teardowns. 

 

Not sure what you mean by 3 complete teardowns per year. Grease Zert applications do not require tear downs. At the end of the video is a pic of the sleeve with groves. I do not have tools to cut groves inside a sleeve so I cut them on the shaft. Total grease process take about 5 min. and never have a rust fuse problem on my axel pivot shaft/sleeve with frequent greasing.

 Grease ZertHB.mp4

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Finally somebody tumbled to my note wherein I spell the word correctly.  I've been using zerks since way back in 1926 when they were invented.  Nope,  the guy who invented them was not named  Zerk.

Most modern cars have few or none.

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1 hour ago, Ufatz said:

Finally somebody tumbled to my note wherein I spell the word correctly.  I've been using zerks since way back in 1926 when they were invented.  Nope,  the guy who invented them was not named  Zerk.

Most modern cars have few or none.

Wow, someone on this site thats about 106 yeare old. 1926 is 92 years ago i am guessing he was about 14 years old when he started using them in 1926. 

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Ha Ha Ha!   I can spell pretty well and am very familiar with grease ZERKS but my mathematics  skills are pretty shabby. And  I was less than honest when I said I had been using them all those years. Actually I'm just old enough to not be able to remember  the last time I greased a ZERK.

Or baited a hook. Or missed a pheasant.

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Posted (edited)

The cable that steers my outboard has zerks, as does my riding lawn mower  and snow blower.     Your memory must be worse than mine or you are not doing your maintenance properly/

Edited by delcecchi

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Papadarv, sorry, I misread your post. I thought when you posted before you were taking the pivot apart 3 times a year. That’s what I do every other year and grease it up good. As far as zert vs zerk, I know it’s wrong to say zert but that’s what I’ve ( and many others) always called them. I still question how much good they do in this application. Each side of my house now has 3 on top and 3 on the bottom of the pivot. I’ll let you know if it was worth the time to Install them in 2 years. 

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I only row now, in a little13 foot boat. There may be a zerk in my oarlocks but I have not found it.

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