Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning - SailNet Community

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post #1 of 13 Old 03-28-2012 Thread Starter
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Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

In going through the new to me boat I removed 7 snatch blocks (with a N M insignia) and they are in need of cleaning. The spring pin on the shackle is very stiff on most of them. I disassembled the sheaves and found they are in very sad shape. I plan to soak them and the roller bearings in a can of kerosene (paraffin for you folks that speak funny English) or maybe Simple Green full strength.
Question is when I reassemble them should I put a light coating of lithium grease on the roller bearings (a la Winches) or just a light oil?
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post #2 of 13 Old 03-28-2012
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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

Are they snatch blocks, or just blocks with a snap shackle on them?

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post #3 of 13 Old 03-28-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

Oh, they're snatch blocks!
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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

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Originally Posted by sailordave View Post
In going through the new to me boat I removed 7 snatch blocks (with a N M insignia) and they are in need of cleaning. The spring pin on the shackle is very stiff on most of them. I disassembled the sheaves and found they are in very sad shape. I plan to soak them and the roller bearings in a can of kerosene (paraffin for you folks that speak funny English) or maybe Simple Green full strength.
Question is when I reassemble them should I put a light coating of lithium grease on the roller bearings (a la Winches) or just a light oil?
Clean the shackle pin with WD40 or another penetrant. Squirt some in and work the pin in & out - repeat and repeat until it works smoothly. Those pins always tighten up if they aren't worked regularly.

For the rollers, if kerosene doesn't do the trick, try diesel - it cleans things very well, if you can stand the smell. A little white lithium should keep them rolling nicely - be sparing with it or you'll have it on your deck & sails.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

You may wish to polish the pistons --a fresh dollar bill works well -- and lube with McLube.
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post #6 of 13 Old 03-29-2012
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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

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You may wish to polish the pistons --a fresh dollar bill works well -- and lube with McLube.
Since when is a $1 bill good enough for ANYTHING on a sailboat?

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

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Originally Posted by sailordave View Post
In going through the new to me boat I removed 7 snatch blocks (with a N M insignia) and they are in need of cleaning. The spring pin on the shackle is very stiff on most of them. I disassembled the sheaves and found they are in very sad shape. I plan to soak them and the roller bearings in a can of kerosene (paraffin for you folks that speak funny English) or maybe Simple Green full strength.
Question is when I reassemble them should I put a light coating of lithium grease on the roller bearings (a la Winches) or just a light oil?
Roller bearings are designed to roll. Adding grease or oil will allow them to collect debris which inhibits there action. A preferred treatment is a thorough dosing with SailKote dry lubricant before reassembling the blocks. Boeing T-9 seems to be a better treatment for the shackle pins once the surface rust is removed.

FWIW...

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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

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Roller bearings are designed to roll. Adding grease or oil will allow them to collect debris which inhibits there action. A preferred treatment is a thorough dosing with SailKote dry lubricant before reassembling the blocks. Boeing T-9 seems to be a better treatment for the shackle pins once the surface rust is removed.

FWIW...

That's what I was wondering. Some of the sheaves are caked w/ gunk. Some of fairly clean and dry and seem to be working just fine. I've stripped winches a gazillion times but never had to tear down a snatch block. I'll try a dry lube and see how it works. Thanks.
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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

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Roller bearings are designed to roll. Adding grease or oil will allow them to collect debris which inhibits there action. FWIW...
That's exactly why I use white lithium - it doesn't seem to hold dirt & debris like heavier greases.

Don't those dry lubricants require frequent recoating?

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post #10 of 13 Old 03-29-2012
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Re: Snatch Blocks; In desperate need of cleaning

Crossion X from APS works really well.
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