Grease is one of the main types of industrial lubricants. It typically has a wide array of consistencies and uses. From thin, grease with the consistency of squeezed mustard to the heavy duty grease that feels almost like a solid, grease runs the gamut of texture and thickness. While greases have a wide range of uses, the focus of this article will be on sodium soap-based grease lubricate.
Why Is Sodium Base Grease So Important?
Sodium Base Grease is used in many cases to replace calcium base soap grease. The reason for this was that it was discovered to have a higher melting point that the calcium alternative. Therefore the best uses for sodium base grease is for high-temperature lubrication. It was instrumental in the early industrial revolution due to its higher melting point
Sodium soap-based grease works best on a variety of bearings and joints where the temperature may become an issue. Because of this high melting point, it was ideal for lubricating early steam engines and machinery.
It is conceivable that the industrial revolution would look wildly different had sodium soap grease not replaced calcium based grease. The low-temperature yield of the calcium-based soap would have been inadequate for many of the newer industrial machines that powered the great industrial revolution.
Sodium base grease still has many uses today and is still manufactured for use in a variety of applications and by many different manufacturers, like CNC Lubricants.
While it doesn’t have the broad usage that it did around the turn of the century.
It has since been usurped by ultra high-temperature lubricants like white lithium grease.
But there is still a place for this versatile and historic lubricant.
What Are The Weaknesses of Sodium Base Grease?
It is not all good news for Sodium Soap Based grease, however. It does have some serious flaws that can limit its usefulness in certain situations. Firstly, sodium base grease tends to harden in storage. This makes its shelf life much lower than many other types of greases. It must be used fairly quickly or you risk losing out on it. But the biggest issue with sodium-based grease is that it is water soluble. It can take the heat but water will render it useless. That means it can only be used in environments where you can guarantee there will be little to no possibility of the grease getting wet. It is a pretty big flaw, but with care one that can be avoided.
Some Closing Thoughts On Sodium Base Grease
There are many unsung heroes that helped build the world we know today. Small little discoveries that help shape the future. Sodium soap-based grease was certainly one of these hidden gems. It enabled our machines to run smoother and run hotter without the constant fear of break-down that lesser lubricants had. It has its weaknesses to be sure. But the plusses far outweigh the minuses for this useful lubrication.
It just goes to show that small things can make a huge difference in the world of industrial manufacturing.