We’re two days through the work week, and that means it’s time for another #techtiptuesday! This week we want to talk about a handy little tool that is rather helpful when…..well really all the time. Having a bottle of Assembly Lube within reach in your shop can help save you time, energy, and prevent damage. Assembly lube is typically a thick tacky oil that is designed to stick to metal surfaces to both aid in putting parts together, and to provide protection post assembly. There are many uses for an assembly lube but we are going to highlight a few of the key ones today, and if you have any uses of your own we would love to see them in the comments!
Since it is quite literally in the name, the first use we want to talk about is for assembly. Have you ever battled those little parts that are supposed to slide together and they just resist going easily? Often times during an engine build, or reassembly parts are cleaned with solvents or other similar materials. This removes all lubrication from the parts and when trying to put them back together the rough metal surfaces with zero lubrication can become stubborn. Pins, dowels, slides, and the like all benefit from a small sampling of this fluid on them.
The final assembly of a motor, transmission, or other machine can be a long process. Between taking your time to make sure everything is in it’s place and you aren’t missing anything the minutes add up. This is where the thick tackiness of an assembly lube come in big as it will hang in place for a decent amount of time giving you the time needed to complete assembly. Using an assembly lube to coat any components that will see metal to metal wear such as cam lobes can help prevent wear on the initial startup. This is a job normally performed by the engine oil, however on the very first startup after a rebuild it can take a few seconds for the engine oil to get dispersed throughout the motor. by having assembly lube in the friction areas of the motor it can help to protect those components until the engine oil can take over permanently.
Another nice benefit of an assembly lube is as a rust preventative. Use it on nuts and bolts as a light coating to help prevent oxidation of the metals. A little coating of the assembly lube can help delay rust, so it can be especially useful on parts that you will need to take back apart at some point and would prefer not to fight with. A little extra work the first time can save you a fair bit the next time you have to take it apart.