Grease Your Oilers?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2017: Grease Your Oilers?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 10:53 am:

The shop that restored Betsy for her previous owner back in 2008 installed aftermarket spring shackles with zerk fittings on the end, see the picture below. One thing about these shackles is that you have to make sure that the oiling hole in the bushing DOES NOT line up with the oiling hole in the spring or perch, or you'll pump all the grease right out of the oiling hole instead of having it go where it needs to go.

When I installed the Ruckstell in Betsy last week, I decided that I wanted to go back to the stock Ford oilers to get the right look. So, I had to drive out the bushings in both the perches and the spring and drive in new bushings with the oiler holes lined up.

When I removed the aftermarket shackles, I was impressed with the near-negligable wear that I saw after nine years of use. :-) I also saw oil leaking onto the floor almost immediately out of my new shackles with oilers. :-(

So, how to get the best of both worlds? I went to Auto Zone and bought a fat grease needle and a pack of rubber vacuum caps. I drilled a 1/16 inch hole in the end of one of the caps and stuck it onto the end of the grease needle.

Now, I can cram the rubber tip onto the top of the open oiler and pump in grease until it oozes out of both ends of the shackle.

The needle works great on the perch oilers as-is, but I'm going to have to jack the car up by the frame to get the spring to relax enough to have access to the oilers on the spring eyes.

I should be able to get away with only one or two greasings per season instead of much more frequent oilings, we'll see! :-)

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Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 11:29 am:

Follow-up:

It is easy to get access to the spring-eye oilers, no need to jack up the frame.

I just put a jack under the spring eye and jacked that eye up, one side at a time until I could fully open that eye's oiler cap. No need to jack the frame. Then just cram the rubber tipped needle onto the oiler and pump away! :-)

(Message edited by cudaman on May 16, 2017)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Philip Berg on Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 12:04 pm:

While grease fittings aren't standard on our Fords my 11 touring has them installed from a previous owner. Not sure how many years ago they were installed but my suspension is still tight. Carl cruises down the road easily with no odd suspension related issues. I've decided to leave them on and give a squirt every so often.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Duey_C on Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 05:42 pm:

That's really a neat idea!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith, Lomita, California on Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 10:48 am:

Mark, I'm surprised you are talking like that. The original Ford method is just fine. If the bushings that were in the perches and spring eyes were ok, then all you should have had to do is drill the hole, and clean out the shavings, and you're done! When installing the oilers, you have to pay attention the cap on top. For instance, the oilers on the springs must be installed so you can get an oil can in there, because when installed, they are located under the perch, and can only be put in one way.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 01:20 pm:

Thanks for that, Larry. I think I installed the caps on my rear spring oilers in the correct orientation, can you confirm?

Now that I have a way to pump grease into my oilers, I'm going to swap out the aftermarket front shackles with zerks currently on Betsy to OEM ones with oilers. Shouldn't that be seen as another step forward towards originality?



Regarding oil vs. grease - IMO, both will do a fine job of lubricating the shackles and the choice of which to use should be a personal one.

Personally, am I going to continue to pump grease into my OEM shackle oilers instead of oil?


Ah, Yup. :-)



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Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Duey_C on Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 07:38 pm:

Mark, may I ask? What kind of a jack do you use to get under the spring eyes to lift it out into the open?
I don't think my Handy-Man would do it.
Hah! Your caps open farther than mine do! Mine are faced to the rear. Barely able to open at all.

(Message edited by Duey_C on May 18, 2017)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 07:47 pm:

I used my stock Model T jack, sitting on a 4x4 block of wood for some extra height. I just jack that end of the spring enough to get clearance for the grease needle.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Duey_C on Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 08:27 pm:

Sounds good. Thank you!

(Message edited by Duey_C on May 18, 2017)


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