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Do you Grease your circle?

Danial Doherty

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
94
Location
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Do you guys grease your circle?? when i first started to run a grader i was told to put a dry graphite grease on your circle. I went to my shop to pick up a can and they told me that they never had any and that i should use the regular grease that is in my grease gun! So thats what i did. When i got to the job site my forman noticed that i used regular black grease and flipped out, Saying that it collects dirt and wears the gears out quicker. He then told me that you should not use anything on your circle and to just leave it dry..

What are you supposed to do??
 

TimHay

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 2, 2009
Messages
136
Location
Onoway Alberta
Occupation
Self employed
I don't use anything, and agree that plain grease would let the dirt stick to them.
 

Grader4me

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
1,792
Location
New Brunswick, Canada
Don't put nothing on the circle. I've used the dry lube (graphite) but it doesn't last very long. Grease, as said just holds the dirt causing premature wear.
 

Motor Grader

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2007
Messages
230
Location
Charlotte, NC
Occupation
Technology Solutions Expert
I think alot depends on the wear material and there have been several different designs and combinations over the last 20 years so I think this discussion could be all over the place. All of our compact graders use steel replaceable wear parts in the circle. I always reccommend something to lubricate it but leave it up to owner or operator preference. I understand the theory of grease holding in dirt but my experience is this. Metal to metal "dry" wears fater than metal to metal with gritty grease. Now I won't stick to that theory on the newer designs with synthetic wear parts. I think the trick there to long life is first starting with nice smooth surface and then keeping it adjusted and clean. I personally like the dry graphite spray just to keep things slick. Will be very interesting to hear what is working for everyone.
 

Super Roel

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2007
Messages
98
Location
The Netherlands
I think alot depends on the wear material and there have been several different designs and combinations over the last 20 years so I think this discussion could be all over the place. All of our compact graders use steel replaceable wear parts in the circle. I always reccommend something to lubricate it but leave it up to owner or operator preference. I understand the theory of grease holding in dirt but my experience is this. Metal to metal "dry" wears fater than metal to metal with gritty grease. Now I won't stick to that theory on the newer designs with synthetic wear parts. I think the trick there to long life is first starting with nice smooth surface and then keeping it adjusted and clean. I personally like the dry graphite spray just to keep things slick. Will be very interesting to hear what is working for everyone.

Yes , i greased the circel with withe grease spray , it is a wet grease and it worked very well , my later graders have a big ballbearing as circel and then you dont have any maintenance on your circel , no wear and no adjustment to do .
 

Grader4me

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
1,792
Location
New Brunswick, Canada
Good topic! We have a fleet of approx. 50 or so graders and we do not grease the circles. Very little wear is noticed. I used to use the dry lube but found that it wore off quickly. I have never had circle damage due to using no grease. I find using grease on the circle just makes a mess. Now, this is just my 2 cents for all its worth...:)
 

plowking740

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2006
Messages
207
Location
Calgary
Occupation
Equipment operator
im with Grader4me on this topic, when i started out on the grader, many moons ago, i used to get in trouble for greasing the circle, when i moved up to a newer machine (740champ) i would use dry graphite lube, that lasted about a year, once they started to get the bills for the lube they but a stop to that. they just wanted me wash it down with a little bit of diesel fuel. now i check with the service man or boss where ever i work to find what they would like. So far, they all want them dry.

Super Roel, what kind of a grader do you operate that has ballbearings in the circle?
 

surfer-joe

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2007
Messages
1,403
Location
Arizona
I've found over the years that a dry circle is best, with constant attention paid to the adjustments. A worn circle is very expensive to rebuild.
 

Super Roel

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2007
Messages
98
Location
The Netherlands
im with Grader4me on this topic, when i started out on the grader, many moons ago, i used to get in trouble for greasing the circle, when i moved up to a newer machine (740champ) i would use dry graphite lube, that lasted about a year, once they started to get the bills for the lube they but a stop to that. they just wanted me wash it down with a little bit of diesel fuel. now i check with the service man or boss where ever i work to find what they would like. So far, they all want them dry.

Super Roel, what kind of a grader do you operate that has ballbearings in the circle?
Hello Plowking 740 ,
The first one was a O&K 156 A , and the second one was a HBM 110 TA 3 , the HBM where selling in the USA as Terex , and i dont now of the are with of whitout ballbaring in te USA , in Europe you have the choise what you want .The circel with ballbaring is a very large bearing .see the pictures , first the O&K than the HBM and at last the circel of the O&K .
 

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Randy Krieg

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2007
Messages
260
Location
Arizona
Occupation
Test Pilot/Operator @ Caterpillar's Tucson Proving
The Proper Procedure is Listed in the O&MM

First of all there are two areas to define; the RING and the TEETH. I do not grease the ring, but I do grease the front 120 degrees of drive teeth and the pinion everyday. In Caterpillar’s Motor Grader O&MM under “Maintenance Interval Schedule” SMCS Code 1000; 7000, it recommends greasing the teeth “Every 10 Service hours or Daily”. It’s been printed in there nearly the same way for over 30 years! It was in the old straight frame manuals, it was in the G Series manuals, it was in the H Series manuals and it’s still printed in the M Series manuals. Depending on the machine and year the procedure is list between pages 115 to 122 and the Maintenance Intervals are generally close to page 100. The problem here is; NOBODY READS THE BOOK ! :beatsme Since 1996 Caterpillar has been using Graphite Impregnated Wear Strips (GIWS) in the circle; upper and lower wear strips, so it’s already lubricated. Champion/Volvo also has been using GIWS for several years. Before the GIWS I sprayed the ring everyday with graphite, sometimes twice a day, that's what the two holes in the drawbar were for. So you could spray the top while someone rotated the circle.
I’ve stated this in other threads on HEF; I park the machine (14H or 16H) at night with the moldboard facing the cab so the front 120 degrees of circle drive teeth are exposed. Every night before I leave the job I grab my plastic rotomill tooth bucket and my drywall spatula, I scrape all the grease off the teeth and put it in the bucket, about once every week I clean the bucket into the burning barrel. The service oilers put a little spot of grease on each tooth at night. Every 2-3 weeks I wash the front teeth with solvent. The 14H that I’m now operating is approaching the 15,000 hour mark. You can still see the flame cut marks in the front set of teeth. When I sold my 14G it had just over 10,000 on the SHM and the teeth still looked like new due to good maintenance. I have seen 14H’s and 16H’s with 4000 on the SHM and the front circle drive teeth are destroyed from lack of maintenance and poor operating techniques. There are six hydraulic functions on a motor grader, which can all be used either simultaneously or independently to keep dirt out of the circle teeth. If you’re jamming dirt in the circle you’re doing something wrong. How do I know? Because after 50,000 hours on these things I’ve done it wrong a time or two.
Are there operating procedures, which warrant longer maintenance intervals of the teeth? I believe there are. When plowing snow or during spring gravel road maintenance the circling intervals are about 10-20 percent of what they are when we're placing fill with the grader. I’ve been on highway jobs operating 16G’s and H’s where we were placing 15,000 tons day after day. At lunch break I grease the teeth because I constantly have to switch sides as I’m building/filling the shoulders first.
I’ve seen too many machines go to an early grave due to lack of maintenance and laziness. Trust me, I hate that miserable, sticking, smelly, gooey grease as much as anybody, but what I hate more is a loose sloppy DCM from lack of maintenance!
Great question Dan :)
 

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Grader4me

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
1,792
Location
New Brunswick, Canada
Great info Randy..thanks. I was referring to the top of the circle or ring so to speak that I don't grease. I agree with everything that you stated..:) Wow you are very diligent on servicing. I always prided myself on that but you have me beat lol.
I found with the graphite spray I was continually spraying as it would wear off so fast. So..I just stopped doing that. I also tried the coat of diesel oil as mentioned previously but wasn't pleased with that either, as the dust and dirt stuck to it.
 

JDOFMEMI

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2007
Messages
3,074
Location
SoCal
Great answer Randy

I always get excited when I see you have replied to a post, as I know I will get a thorough education on a subject.

Thanks.
 

plowking740

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2006
Messages
207
Location
Calgary
Occupation
Equipment operator
Thank you very much Randy, I always learn something new every time you post something.
and yes, I will start greasing the teeth on my circle, regardles what the boss and Super tell me.
 

Super Roel

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2007
Messages
98
Location
The Netherlands
First of all there are two areas to define; the RING and the TEETH. I do not grease the ring, but I do grease the front 120 degrees of drive teeth and the pinion everyday. In Caterpillar’s Motor Grader O&MM under “Maintenance Interval Schedule” SMCS Code 1000; 7000, it recommends greasing the teeth “Every 10 Service hours or Daily”. It’s been printed in there nearly the same way for over 30 years! It was in the old straight frame manuals, it was in the G Series manuals, it was in the H Series manuals and it’s still printed in the M Series manuals. Depending on the machine and year the procedure is list between pages 115 to 122 and the Maintenance Intervals are generally close to page 100. The problem here is; NOBODY READS THE BOOK ! :beatsme Since 1996 Caterpillar has been using Graphite Impregnated Wear Strips (GIWS) in the circle; upper and lower wear strips, so it’s already lubricated. Champion/Volvo also has been using GIWS for several years. Before the GIWS I sprayed the ring everyday with graphite, sometimes twice a day, that's what the two holes in the drawbar were for. So you could spray the top while someone rotated the circle.
I’ve stated this in other threads on HEF; I park the machine (14H or 16H) at night with the moldboard facing the cab so the front 120 degrees of circle drive teeth are exposed. Every night before I leave the job I grab my plastic rotomill tooth bucket and my drywall spatula, I scrape all the grease off the teeth and put it in the bucket, about once every week I clean the bucket into the burning barrel. The service oilers put a little spot of grease on each tooth at night. Every 2-3 weeks I wash the front teeth with solvent. The 14H that I’m now operating is approaching the 15,000 hour mark. You can still see the flame cut marks in the front set of teeth. When I sold my 14G it had just over 10,000 on the SHM and the teeth still looked like new due to good maintenance. I have seen 14H’s and 16H’s with 4000 on the SHM and the front circle drive teeth are destroyed from lack of maintenance and poor operating techniques. There are six hydraulic functions on a motor grader, which can all be used either simultaneously or independently to keep dirt out of the circle teeth. If you’re jamming dirt in the circle you’re doing something wrong. How do I know? Because after 50,000 hours on these things I’ve done it wrong a time or two.
Are there operating procedures, which warrant longer maintenance intervals of the teeth? I believe there are. When plowing snow or during spring gravel road maintenance the circling intervals are about 10-20 percent of what they are when we're placing fill with the grader. I’ve been on highway jobs operating 16G’s and H’s where we were placing 15,000 tons day after day. At lunch break I grease the teeth because I constantly have to switch sides as I’m building/filling the shoulders first.
I’ve seen too many machines go to an early grave due to lack of maintenance and laziness. Trust me, I hate that miserable, sticking, smelly, gooey grease as much as anybody, but what I hate more is a loose sloppy DCM from lack of maintenance!
Great question Dan :)

Thanks for your answer Randy , i have a tip so the circel keeps cleaner , i have made a steel plate onder the circel so the ground cannot reach the inner circel when you have a full load for your blade .
 

Engineer4255

Active Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2007
Messages
38
Location
Delaware
I've heard it done a lot of ways, grease, no grease, used motor oil, diesel fuel, etc. For the most part have always run a dry circle top surface, and as Randy said placed grease on the teeth on the front part of the circle. But, about 10 years ago I stumbled on something made by Lucas Oil. Its called 5th wheel lube. Its in a bottle, sticky as glue. I place a very thin bead zigging back and forth about every 18 inches on top of the circle, as the circle is being turned. It places a very thin coating on the surface, and have found that dirt, grit etc doesnt really stick to it well. Once a week, or more often in severe conditions, the circle is washed off with diesel full, then the Lucas is reapplied. Now remember this is on a G model, otherwise I would think that the product would damage the nylatron on the H's or newer machines.
 

Ross

Senior Member
Joined
May 29, 2007
Messages
357
Location
In the Rockies
Never seen grease used on CAT turn tables .. (Well not that I notice)

As long as its shimed proper it will be ok .. Throw them silly new Plastic slides and go back to the brass jobbys.
 

bigrus

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2009
Messages
323
Location
Southern Queensland Australia
Occupation
Joystick attendant
Grease for me

On my circle (Dresser A450E) there are grease nipples on the shoes, that apply lubrication to the underside & inside of the circle. I used to apply a "drylube" aswell but now only use it on the power blade guides.
In years long gone, I had 17K 12E & got slack & didn't grease the circle. Lockup in that department meant 'knuckle busting" on the control, eventually breaking a rollpin in the dog clutches (meaning downtime:eek:)
 

jwar100

Active Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2011
Messages
27
Location
Oklahoma
Occupation
Dirt contractor
Best thing i have found to use on the circle is liquid dish soap. it dries quick and leaves a slick wax on the circle. Wont collect dirt either. JW
 
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