Grease is the Word…. If You Want Your Leg, Wagon or Face Vise to Operate Smoothly!Len Hovarter
The clamp shaft of the vises does not require any lubrication to operate smoothly. The internal mechanism however, does need grease for smooth operation. Our vises are built using an NLGI #2 extreme pressure grease. This same high-quality grease is now available for you to purchase in a convenient 0.5-ounce container that you can keep near your vise. Grease is widely available at home centers and auto parts stores but you typically have to purchase a tube (used in grease guns) or a large tub of grease. For those woodworkers who are not also farmers or auto mechanics, that is way more grease than you need.
All of our vises have a blue plug (shown below) that allows you to easily grease the internal mechanism.
Remove the blue plug by grasping the built-in pull handles of the plug. You can see the cam on the left side of the hole in the picture below. You just apply a pea size dab of grease onto the cam face as shown in the pictures below. I like to use a small blade screwdriver for the application. Re-install the plug and you are done. How often you apply grease depends on how much you use your vise. If you are using your vise all day long and every day then a monthly schedule might be appropriate. For the casual hobbyist then once a year will do the job.
If you own a face vise don’t forget to grease your rack and rack bar where it enters the housing. This grease is also excellent for this application. I like to use a small acid brush (found in home centers in the plumbing department) to apply a small amount of grease. Once a year is fine for the rack bar as it is not under as much pressure as the internal mechanism.