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COmpensator Grease
#1
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Bowman Davis
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I want to add grease to my 56 pat compensator. I don't know what or how much is in it now, but it looks and feels like never seize or something like it that is grey/silver in color. Some of the grease manufacturers say not to mix with other types of grease so, what is a guy to put it when you don't know what is in it currently? The Packard manual just says they use a special lube and should never require additional lubrication unless it is disassembled or whatever.

Posted on: 2008/3/4 13:59
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Re: COmpensator Grease
#2
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Owen_Dyneto
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You need a non-channeling grease. I highly recommend Sta-Lube SL-3303, a moly disulfide grease fortified with graphite. It's a CRC product. I'd clean all the old grease out of the unit first before replacing with a different lubricant. You may also want to replace the filler plug at the base with an alemite fitting; just add grease on occasion until you feel it coming out of the vent on the top of the case.

Posted on: 2008/3/4 14:16
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Re: Compensator Grease
#3
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BH
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Owen -

Although I didn't ask this question here, let me thank you for recommending a specific product.

I'd asked that same basic question of someone almost two decades ago, and it ended up being printed as a "Letter to the Editor" in one of the club's publications. A newcomer to Packard circles sent me a copy of the SEA paper on the T-L system, which noted the use of molybdenum-disulfide, but I never got an answer as to an acceptible modern substitute. Even when I asked about this, years later, online in other forums, I never got a qualified opinon that recommended a specific product.

That StaLube product sounds very similar to a CRC "Synthetic Caliper Grease" that I purchased a few years ago, which contained (IIRC) MoS2, graphite, and Teflon. I wasn't working on brakes, but the product seemed very similar in appearance to the original graphite grease used in the recess of the inner race of the throwout bearing in another (non-Packard) car that I was working. The cable operated clutch in that car was unduly stiff, but replacing the old grease in the bearing and smearing a thin coat of this new stuff over the snout of the (input shaft) bearing retainer returned it to like-new operation.

I'm curious to see how it compares to what I find when I tear into the compensator, in readying one of my Patricians for use as a daily, fair-weather, driver.

Posted on: 2008/3/8 17:54
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Re: Compensator Grease
#4
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Owen_Dyneto
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Hi Brian - yes, I do remember that original SEA publication and it's what lead me to find what appeared to be a modern replacement, thus the CRC product I recommended. I also use it in the mechanical brake conduit cables of my 34 Packard as a replacement for the originally recommended "Gredag 213-1/2"; there was a very small amount of the Gredag in a tube under the seat of my Packard when I bought it and for whatever it means, they are quite similar in appearance and feel.

Posted on: 2008/3/8 18:18
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Re: Compensator Grease
#5
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BH
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Oops, "SEA" was an error on my part. I meant to type "SAE" - for Society of Automotive Engineers. (I am a lousy typist.)

I'm a big fan of Lubriplate. Though that's a brand name applied to a wider variety of products today, I'm referring to the original product that used to come in a silver/gray tin can. I use it on brake backing plates and parking brake cables, but especially like it for the star-wheel adjusters. I also use it to lube speedo cables - by hand, after a thorough cleaning.

Lubriplate was just one of those thing my dad always had on hand - at home and work. Though I initially felt it was too thin for use on drum brake backing plates, time seems to have borne out my dad's faith in it. I may even use it to rehabilitate a record changer in an old console stereo that my folks still have.

While some people consider Lubriplate as just another "white grease", it seems to be much more than that. Perhaps the key is its "thixotropic" nature. However, as much as I like Lubriplate, I never felt that it had the "stuff" (like EP additives) to properly lubricate the compensator planetary.

Meanwhile, several answers I got online regarding compensator grease suggested that "any old" chassis grease with MoS2 would do. I'm certainly no lubricant engineer, but answers like that just didn't sit well with my gut - especially when you're dealing with a unique system and a highly limited supply of replacement parts.

While "look and feel" is not at all scientific, in the absence of a complete OE recipe, that at least gives me some confidence that I'm on the right track. It was just "dumb luck" that I found the CRC caliper grease sitting on a shelf at AutoZone (as I prefer traditional parts stores), but it worked so well for me in that clutch bearing application that I'm going to try it on some old disc brake calipers that have been giving me some trouble.

However, I'll purchase a fresh tub of the SL3303 for use in the compensator.

Posted on: 2008/3/9 10:34
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Re: COmpensator Grease
#6
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Bowman Davis
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I haven't found any of the Sta-Lube SL 3303 at any of the Auto stores or "Dealers" but I still have some CRC Sta-Lube 3144 which is a Moly-Graph grease and wondering if that is about the same thing. Even the SL-3144 is very difficult to find around here in tidewater VA. You can find it on the web but S/H adds a lot to the price.

Posted on: 2008/3/9 16:36
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Re: Compensator Grease
#7
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I looked for Sta-Lube SL3303 at "NAPA Online", but had to search for "caliper grease" to find it. It is listed as only available at your local NAPA store.

The Sta-Lube SL3303 comes in a 12 oz. tub - just like the CRC caliper grease (#05353). It makes me wonder if CRC is migrating from the Sta-Lube brand name to their own )or vice-versa), but I have no hard evidence to support that notion.

I've no experience with SL3144 except to say that it is listed as an EP grease, but only comes in a 3-pack of 3-oz. cartidges. Will that be enough to fill the compensator gear case?

I'm curious what Owen can add about SL3144.

Posted on: 2008/3/9 18:41
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Re: Compensator Grease
#8
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Owen_Dyneto
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CRC has a very extensive line of products, lubricants, solvents, blended solvent cleaners, etc. and they are available thru a number of outlets including NAPA. I have no experience with their SL 3144. Nor do I know for a fact that CRC actually makes these lubricants -- I just know it's a good product for TL boxes, mechanical brake conduits and cams, etc.

Posted on: 2008/3/9 22:23
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Re: COmpensator Grease
#9
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Bowman Davis
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I really appreciate the input fromall you guys and it's great to kick all of this stuff around. Actually none of the NAPA stores around here (at least 5 or 6) carry the sta-lube grease, but they do have the lubriplate which packard recommende for the backing plates at the brakes shoes/drums. I did find some more (1 package of 3 tubes) of the SL-3144 at Harbor Freight. I am sure I bought some at the local napa store a couple of years ago but no one remembers having had it in stock and it is no londer in their listed items. But, the good news is I have 4 tubes and I'm pretty sure it will be enough to fill the compensator housing. I'm pretty sure never seize would also work very well in the T/L compensator, but it is a bit moe pricey. What is your opinion on the never seize. We use to use it in pump casings, turbine drives,valves gear boxes, etc.and it never seemed to fail before the next scheduled PM, which was about 2 years on a lot of that equipment.

Posted on: 2008/3/11 21:28
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Re: COmpensator Grease
#10
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Owen_Dyneto
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I think using Never Sieze as a lubricant would be a very unwise move, I'd use a moly disulfide chassis grease first if I didn't want to chase down the 3303 lube or some equivalent, which Never Sieze surely isn't.

Posted on: 2008/3/11 22:22
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