Tuesday 7 February 2023

Grease to Make Onboard Jobs Easier

 On board special use grease  "Triple One" compound (111)

If there is one on board grease that I have found to be helpful time and time again it has to be triple one compound. I first got introduced to it when I was working in the desert in the 80’s, at the time we would use it for a multitude of jobs and due to the heat we needed some thing that wouldn’t vanish and run off when the sun came up the next day. Plumbing, assembly of o’ ring components, and fit ups of urethane insulated wire components, and under the bonnet of the work trucks for a variety of jobs. When my job took me offshore I would use this grease again for a multitude of jobs and we went through tubes and tubes of the stuff. We mostly used it to aid the door seals of electrical housings and navigation buoy hatch seals, aiding the assembly of electronic component housings, joining the high voltage cables that would ultimately be towed behind the vessel at various depths. We even used it to help the porthole rubber seals slide easily into place when we dogged them down so they wouldn't leak. I have used it on modern yacht hatches where the acrylic hatches seal against a rubber seal. This allows the rubber to bed onto the acrylic and when the hatch is open it helps stop salt forming in the very fine coating of grease on both surfaces. 

Here is a compound to make boating life easier, it has a dozen or more uses on board here are a few of them.

Great for a variety of assembly jobs and protection of important electrical components. 

Triple one compound, primarily it’s food grade silicone grease and can be used as a soft sealant for shipboard equipment subject to washing and harsh environmental exposure. It’s great as a chemical barrier coating for electrical connections. Good resistance to most chemicals and has a wide service temperature range -40° C to 200° C. It prevents gaskets from sticking to metal and resists weathering and water washout. It can be used as a sealant for vacuum and pressure systems and is a lubricant for rubber and plastic O-rings, gaskets and seals and due to the high melt point can be used on hot or cold systems. It’s not a lubricant for metal to metal, so don’t use it on metal threads unless you want galling.

Use sparingly to lubricate the nonmetallic components of the fresh and salt water systems. When assembling taps, ball valves, replacing tap washers, fiber washers and O-rings, works well for pump impellers, pistons, gaskets, sea strainer assembly, importantly it’s great when assembling toilet components because these are both a vacuum and pressure system. Like lanolin it won’t attack rubber or synthetic derivatives like petroleum based compounds can. Having trouble sliding a hose on a barb, a little on the barb and the two should go together easily.

It’s great for assembling electronic /electrical bits in a harsh shipboard environment, to help control corrosion lightly coat the surfaces you want protected. Use it on the seals when replacing the tops of lifebuoy lights, strobes and waterproof torches as it resists weathering and water washout. When assembling navigation lights the grommets or glands can be troublesome, a wipe of grease and the job becomes a lot easier to get the wire sliding into the gland or grommet, improve the corrosion resistance of the wire by dipping the stripped wire into the compound before assembly into the screw down clamp this will keep the moist air out and slow the wicking of water down the wire. A smear on the bulb base will help stop the corrosion between the contacts and it will also help stop tracking between the poles due to moisture, great for incandescent bulbs due to the high melt point. Use it to lubricate port hole/hatch seals, the gaskets are able to seal when the acrylic or frame doesn’t stick to the seal. Use it on battery terminals and cable lugs like you would use Vaseline, but due to a wide service temperature range it will keep its shape and not melt away due to the heat from charging, or engine room heat. If you have a screw to insert in a hard to reach place a little dab on the screw head to hold that screw on the end of the screwdriver (of course there are screw starters for this job but this is a great stand by)

Used as it is supposed to be used, mainly making rubber and plastic components slide together its worth its weight in gold. As a warning and speaking from experience keep in mind it is not for metal threads, it will almost instantly bind stainless steel screw threads together. My suggestion for stainless steel threaded components is the use of lanolin grease or a metal component anti seize

A post detailing Tef - Gel Vs Duralac is here 

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