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Apprentice Modder


58 Posts

Posted - 09/10/2009 :  20:14:32  Show Profile
I thought this might help others, here's how I cleaned a gearbox. It was full of sand. I didn't take before pics cause I didn't know this would work so well. I don't know if this method has been used before, but it worked great for me.

1) Disassemble your gearbox, and remove as much grease as you can by hand.

2) Get yourself a bucket and fill it with hot water and add a liberal amount of Dawn Ultra Dish detergent (scent of your choice )

3) Put in your disassembled gearbox and gears (don't put in the metal pins the gears spin on), and swish them around good and leave them for a couple days, giving them a swish every once in a while.

After a couple days the old grease floats off, take them out and clean off what little grease remains.

and you have nice clean gears:

Now I'm going to regrease with this grease I got at Autozone:

I haven't used it before, but it says lithium grease so I'm guessing it's OK if it's not please let me know (it's kind of a light red color). And with protection up to 375 degrees, I should be good to run the motors on 1000 volts

Hope this helps....

Senior Modder

Red Bank

1349 Posts

Posted - 09/12/2009 :  05:31:53  Show Profile  Visit HobbyMasters's Homepage
Most bearing greases are not plastic safe. Be cautious.

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Advanced Modder

Bloomsbury (08804)

3739 Posts

Posted - 09/12/2009 :  05:44:06  Show Profile
I have used mobil 1 synthetic grease on a set. So far so good. Alot of newwer cars use plastic bushings/sockets in the ball joints and tie rod ends. I'm experimenting with it. I would **assume** (you know what they say) that if it effected the gears in any way, they would probably swell up a little (thats probably not a bad thing for a #3 box)

I have also used Dawn. I use it with a bucket and a tooth brush. The grease smears around some, but after a few minutes it will blow right off when sprayed with a garden hose. (They actually use Dawn to clean up commercial oil spills)

Drive it like you stole it!........out of somebody's garbage!
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Apprentice Modder


58 Posts

Posted - 09/12/2009 :  07:54:04  Show Profile
I went with the wheel bearing grease based on the How do I lube my gearbox FAQ. And the fact that it's lithium I figured best of both worlds, I haven't put it back together yet, Is there a grease that you recomend??? I'm still learning as I go. Maybe I should just look for white lithium grease instead.

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Expert Modder


850 Posts

Posted - 09/13/2009 :  10:12:21  Show Profile
I use a wheel bearing grease. Has a good viscosity and doesn't turn to syrup when it gets warm. I know on model trains i use a plastic safe oil but i have not seen any issues yet using wheel bearing grease on gearboxes. The gears are not any tighter than they were when i started.

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