How many of you take apart the front end where you have the tie rod, drag link, and radius rad and grease the ball and socket joint? How often should this be done? The pitman arm, too.
The Ford lube chart has the front wheel bearings, U-joint, steering bracket, and drive shaft being greased every 500 miles. I would include those front end parts at the same time.
I do mine every spring, had them apart late summer after well over 1K miles and still had lotsa grease left in them. Gotta remember, even grease today is probably better than what they had back then.
I grease them when I assemble them. After that, I just oil them periodically.
My 11 has APCO ends on the tie rod and drag link, someone added a zerk fitting so I just give a pump now and then to lubricate.
Jerry V, you mentioned something that I have wondered about, so I'll ask. Is it better to put grease on first, knowing that you are going to be putting oil in afterwards? I thought about it because I have the rearend out of my car to rebuild it and will be putting it back in soon, I hope. The spring shackles are new but were put in dry by the previous owner. I want to lube them when I put them back together.
Tommy...FWIW when I replace spring shackles I use Lubriplate first, then oil per instructions. I think Dave's original post intention mainly pertained to the front steering ball joints/caps, that only are greased.
I take mine apart and grease them once a year.
Since all my driving is on dry, paved roads, the grease stays pretty clean - I could probably go longer between greasings, but it isn't that big a deal to do it once a year.
I assemble my drag link parts with old fashioned wheel bearing grease, which lasts a long time. When I oil the shackles I usually squirt some oil into those areas, and it seems to work fine. It's such a bitch to undo those caps for grease, cause the cotter pin holes never want to line up where I want them!
There's an intuitive part of me that is loathe to take critical things apart more often than is absolutely necessary. _The celebrated lubrication chart, compiled during the heyday of the Tin Lizzie, concerned itself with a very hard-working daily commuter that trundled over unpaved roads and pushed through all kinds of weather on a routine basis—year 'round, year after year. _And as the tired cliché goes; that was then, this is now. _With but a few eccentric exceptions, today's Flivver owner pampers his pet and doesn't inflict anywhere near the kind of wear and tear for which Henry intended the design. _My Model T, which I suppose is of the most typical variety, hibernates the winter away in a cozy attached garage and then relaxes some more, even during the driving season, with its repose only punctuated by the most exceptionally beautiful, sunny days. _And then, ever respectful of her age, I drive my mechanical pride and joy ever so gently.
The pitman, drag link and tie-rods generally move—slowly—through a fairly short range of motion, and they don't get hot from friction, so I don't really see these joints as being super critical where lubrication is concerned. _A couple of years ago, I did take them apart once, cleaned and liberally greased the mating parts, carefully reassembled, pinned and checked for play. _After that, all I've done is keep the oilers nice and juicy during the driving season and give the parts an occasional tug & shake to check for play or looseness.
When the winter ends and the buds are budding, I change the oil, clean the screen at the top of the hogshead and pack the hell out of the dope cups with red grease and do the rest of the lubrication chart. _I also jack up the front end and give the wheels a spin to make sure they're still running freely and with quiet smoothness. _Then, halfway through the driving season, I fill the grease-cups again. _The timer gets cleaned out every second or third fuel-stop, or any time the engine develops a skippy idle. _The two universal joint grease-cups do get special attention because they're critical. _Every now and then, the leaf springs get sprayed with penetrating oil.
Every two or three years, the front wheels get dismounted and I pack the ball-bearings with fresh grease. _Now, because of the way roads are crowned, the right corner of the right front tire tread tends to wear out first and mine, indeed, is showing some wear, so after repacking the front wheels, I'll rotate the right with the left.
I did the unthinkable - I added small Zerk fitting to both caps; makes it a heck of a lot easier to grease without all the hassle!
That's SMART thinking Bill! I have them too.
nice work there bill