I am into hobby machining using an old beaten CNC mill in my garage. Being novice my confidence is rather low and I have genuine fear of breaking something (even ancient CNC machines like mine cost a fortune), so when I got to the part of the users manual that listed recommended lubricants for the different parts of the machine I felt out of my league completely (especially since I just basically submerged the whole machine in a bath of general purpose lubricant spray).

So I would like to know, how are lubricants usually classified/graded?

Which classification/grade matters to which kind of use?

What are the risks of using the wrong lubricants?


1 Answer 1


Lubricants are usually graded for a host of different properties, but ultimately what you are looking for is it's thermal stability, and a viscosity index related to the temperature your mills parts run at. These properties are optimized for different parts of the machine because they run at different speeds and as a consequence temperatures. I could delve into more, but I would need more specifics about the machine itself. If you wish to pursue the problem further on your own I would suggest This website as a reference. Also take a look at this cautionary article regarding accurate measurements on viscosity index as it can be a bit tricky.

The consequence of using the wrong lubricants varies based on how wrong you are... But ultimately the lubricant will thin out to the point that is does not decrease friction and or cool the parts it is lubricating if it degrades at the temperature the part runs at.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.