Ti threads - to lube or not to lube?

Wurkkos

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Also, based on my experience I advise against replacing the lube on titanium threads more often than absolutely necessary; the titanium granules shaved off during the break-in process seem to act as a rolling agent that improves the lube's functionality, provided the lube can keep them suspended and prevent them from re-galling to the threads again. So don't clean and relube the threads just because the lube turns dark. It's not motor oil, it doesn't have to be changed every 6 months.
 

nbp

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Angelpoise:

I got some Teflon tape today, the really thin stuff. Like $0.60 for a roll. I doubled it over as the width was too much for the short Haiku threads and I put 1.5 turn on the threads. Smoooooooth! That worked awesomely! There was still some sticking once the o-ring contacted the head as I did not lube that to prevent the gumming action, but the threads worked really nicely. Zero grinding action as ti threads typically produce. Thanks for the idea. :thumbsup:
 

precisionworks

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WOW ... three years of inactivity & this thread comes back to life :wave:

I use Krytox
Same here.

For aluminum lights, Copaslip (anti seize compound with copper) works well. But it doesn't do as nicely on Ti as does Krytox.

Not every industrial supplier carries the full line of Krytox products in the small tubes, but Medical Gas Supplies is one that does. I use the #203 grease, for no particular reason except that it works well, and a 2 oz tube will last most people for years & years.

http://www.medgassupplies.com/index.php/browse/manufacturer/id/1/dupont-krytox
 

fyrstormer

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Aluminum doesn't need anti-seize. Metal-soap grease (such as lithium grease) will work just fine, aluminum-soap grease especially so. In fact, I'd be worried that the copper flakes in the anti-seize would scratch the aluminum parts over time, as copper has a higher Mohs hardness than aluminum has.
 
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precisionworks

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copper flakes in the anti-seize
My understanding is that the copper is ground (or screened) to sub micron size. It's in a suspension with molybdenum disulphide.

Aluminum doesn't need anti-seize.
Aluminum-to-aluminum galling is a well known and extensively documented problem. It is not unlike titanium-to-titanium galling.
 

jumpstat

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I have reverted back to using Krytox since haikus came with it originally. All I can report is that just put a tad on the threads and oring. Previously I put too much which is no-no. The o-ring has stopped sticking as it used to before this.
 

fyrstormer

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My understanding is that the copper is ground (or screened) to sub micron size. It's in a suspension with molybdenum disulphide.
Copper still has a higher Mohs hardness than aluminum has, and MoS2 has an even higher Mohs hardness. Physics is physics. I do use an anti-seize compound on titanium threads, but titanium is much harder than aluminum.

Aluminum-to-aluminum galling is a well known and extensively documented problem. It is not unlike titanium-to-titanium galling.
How odd, I never noticed, maybe because aluminum is so much softer. Ah well, I never run threads dry anyway, except maybe steel-on-steel. Anyway, I've used lithium-soap grease on my original Arc AAA since 2001 and the threads are nothing if not polished mirror-smooth.
 

McGizmo

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The only real galling problem I ever encountered, personally, with a flashlight was with a prototype light assembly PK gave me. There was an adapter on the flashlight head that took it from the classic to M3 thread and the aluminum had galled to the point I could not remove the adapter from head. When it started, I could twist the adapter partially in both directions but as I tried leaching different lubes into the threads with hopes of loosening the parts it just got worse and worse until they bound up with no hope of separation. I suspect there was some foreign object or perhaps an aluminum burr that was stuck between the threads and my actions caused it to ultimately jam up in the soft aluminum. Typically with clean threads I don't believe we exert enough force or load on the threads of the lights to experience galling like we would if the components were either in a significant tension or compression load relative to each other.
 

Sparky's Magic

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Pharmacy grade Ethanol works brilliantly for cleaning-up. No Nyogel (?) here in Australia
but INOX PTFE Fully synthetic EP premium food grade - no melt, high temp., extreme
pressure machinery grease, highly resistant to moisture, salt, chemicals & drying (MX6)
is available and about Au.$7 a 30 gm. tube.

It is recommended for seals and O rings and is a pleasure to use: It does turn dark gray
over time and I am wondering about this.

The several Ti.'lights I have work well with the INOX and it provides easy one handed operation.
 

fyrstormer

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All light-colored lubricants will turn dark grey over time with metal-on-metal contact. There will always be tiny metal shavings that end up suspended in the lubricant -- provided the lubricant is good enough, that's fine, because the metal shavings will become a rolling agent to reduce further wear.
 

fyrstormer

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The only real galling problem I ever encountered, personally, with a flashlight was...an adapter on the flashlight head that took it from the classic to M3 thread and the aluminum had galled to the point I could not remove the adapter from head. When it started, I could twist the adapter partially in both directions but as I tried leaching different lubes into the threads with hopes of loosening the parts it just got worse and worse until they bound up with no hope of separation.
Yikes! I've never seen anything like that. Then again, I've never used any threaded tools without lubrication. I've always known aluminum was soft and I never saw any reason to let it grind itself to powder, so I always at least put a drop of oil on the threads.

Out of curiosity, did you try using a strap wrench to break the threads free?
 

archer6817j

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I use nano-oil on everything and I really like it. At first I didn't think it worked well on Ti because the threads didn't feel good "right away," but as I've used the light the threads have become really smooth.

The two reasons I don't like grease is that most of them "firm up" when it gets cold and they seem to attract a lot of dirt and grit.

I just got an HDS rotary and I love it except for the grease they used. Even at room temp, the rest I'd the light wants to unscrew before the rotary part wants to move. If I warm it up in my pocket it works nice though.

As far as galling, almost any kind of lubricant should control the issue since pressure in the mating faces is a major factor in galling...in my experience. If there is this much pressure in your flashlight threads you have a whole 'nother problem. Once you get past the feature of anti-seize, selecting the best lube gets a little more complicated :)
 

BarryG

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I have some of the JETBeam MG20 lubricant, you guys think it would be ok for a Hiaku or do I need to get some Krytox? Just wanted to ask before I used it?

Barry
 

nbp

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Just get rid of the stock EPDM o-ring if it's Nyogel. They don't play well. Replace with something like buna (nitrile) or Viton. Check the chart I posted earlier in the thread for chemical/o-ring compatibility.
 

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