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Running Oil in Swivels vs Grease Q

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Hi All,

As my axle is "Well and truly apart :lol:" I was having a discussion with mate about running oil in

swivels vs grease, I have always run oil, for all the reasons discussed oftenm, BUT, he removes the

seal from the end of the swivel, where as I chop away the Dowty rubber seal etc and use no oil seals

in the Hub etc, both he does BOTH

So, pros and cons of removal of oil seal as well from swivel ?




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Well if you spring a leak anywhere in the axle, the entire axle empties eventualy- kind of. plus if you do an axle breather pipe, the entire axle takes in water. I run no seal between the wheelbearing and swivel, but keep the seal between the diff and the swivel.

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I posted about this a few weeks ago, and people suggested leaving the seals out on the rear, but when i asked about the front i was told to leave it as the factory intended.

I had planned to run without the seal between the swivel and the wheel bearings, as i figured the extra lubrication cant be a bad thing.

Also, the level plug in the swivel is above the level of the shaft, so your swivel could well be permenantly running low on oil, if you leave out the inner swivel ball seal.

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There was a long good discussion on here, On the International forun IIRC. A couple of years ago.

I think the general concensus was grease was alright except for competition work where the cleaning out was easier with the oil.

Seals were also discussed.

It made very good reading. A most enjoyable post.

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no, leave the swivel to axle seal in place. As aragorn said, the oil level in the swivel is way above the oil level in the axle shafts. So if you remove that seal your swivel will effectively empty and it'll be running very low.

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My thoughts -

  • If you have Railko bushes in your top swivel, (as seen in Series trucks and earlier 90/110 axles) you need to run oil, so it can splash lube the bush and pin. I reckon a small amount goes in the top and the tiny hole in the bottom of the bush may let some in/out. I can't see grease finding its way into the bush.
  • If you lubed a Railko with grease during assembly the grease will get squeezed out in service, and the bush will go dry and wear faster.
  • All the axles LR specified to use 'CV grease' featured taper roller bearings top and bottom. These can be lubed with grease prior to assembly, and enough grease will most likely stay in there during operation. The taper roller bearing design provides a void for the grease to be retained in. I daresay some extra may get splashed up there as the shafts spin round.
  • CV joints probably self lube well with grease.
  • UJs by virtue of their shape, would fling oil around better than a CV joint could.
  • Grease does not fling in the way oil does.
  • As already mentioned, if you have a slight leak, you can see when the oil has stopped running out :rolleyes:

My 90 has Railko bushed swivels, so I run them in oil, for the reasons I have given. I don't think the CV will mind too much as long as it has something kind of lubricant, and not nothing or muddy water.

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