Elementary question: What is your favorite brand of grease
and method for protecting steel rollers on your mill? How greasy
do you keep them? Do you wipe the grease off during the day and
re-grease at night if weather is humid. I am in a non
air-conditioned studio in humid Philadelphia. In winter, the
studio is quite dry. I just purchased a can of (solid, not spray)
multi-purpose lithium grease. Is this ok to use? Thank you.
I don’t use grease at all. Too messy. Grease is good for things
like the drive or reduction gears, and the bearings themselves, but
for the actual rolls, I prefer oil. I use either a light machine
oil, such as plain old “3-in-one”, or a light grade motor oil.
Machine oils have the advantage of often having anti corrosion
additives, which sounds reasonable to me. The reason for a light
oil instead of grease is simply that I can wipe a light oil back off
the mill before using it if I wish. Clean dry rolls will work better,
grabbing the metal more easily, and giving you a slightly better
surface, than oily or greasy ones. Think about “roll printing”.
Anything on the rolls will affect the surface of the metal. And that
includes oils. After use, a lightly oiled rag is used to again wipe
down the rolls. This cleans off any residue left by the metal, and
re-oils them so they stay clean.