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lyosha

What do you lubricate your yellow cables with?

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peter.draper

food grade silicone is recommended by most manufacturers (available at Ace hardware stores I think) but it's almost impossible to find here in Qatar so I usually use a light (very light) coat of sewing machine oil



I've found food grade silicone spray in SCUBA diving shops.
"It's amazing what you can learn while you're not talking." - Skydivesg

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BrianM

***food grade silicone is recommended by most manufacturers (available at Ace hardware stores I think) but it's almost impossible to find here in Qatar so I usually use a light (very light) coat of sewing machine oil



I've found food grade silicone spray in SCUBA diving shops.

This stuff?

http://www.leisurepro.com/p-AQU5SP2/500-psi-silicone-spray?gclid=CNqqvu_X78cCFVNufgod7dINtw&kwid=productads-plaid^18283950120-sku^AQU5SP2@ADL4LP-adType^PLA-device^c-adid^56051352613

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I always understood the problem with the silicone spray was that it tended to dry out and didn't lube the cables very well. I think John Sherman may have written an article about it at one point. I called UPT a number of years ago and they suggested 3 in 1 oil or sewing machine oil so I've been using that ever since.

-Michael

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hackish

I always understood the problem with the silicone spray was that it tended to dry out and didn't lube the cables very well. I think John Sherman may have written an article about it at one point. I called UPT a number of years ago and they suggested 3 in 1 oil or sewing machine oil so I've been using that ever since.

-Michael




Every time this comes up someone states that John Sherman does not like Silicon and prefers 3 in 1 oil. Most riggers have been trained to use food grade silicon. Followers of Sherman shake their heads at the rest of us and use the oil. Bottom line is keep your cables clean and lubricated. And understand that Parachute Labs uses a different material to coat the cable than everyone else does.
Always remember the brave children who died defending your right to bear arms. Freedom is not free.

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From Bill Booth:

" The best stuff I've found for cleaning and lubricating 3 ring cables is Silicone Spray Lubricant. We use Ace Hardware Store brand. Just spray onto a clean rag or paper towel, and wipe down the cable a few times. Only a thin invisible film should remain. A light mineral oil, such as 3-in-1 is also fine. Do this every month, or more often if you jump at a very dusty dropzone. "

http://www.dropzone.com/cgi-bin/forum/gforum.cgi?post=231561;search_string=ace;#231561

Derek V

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I always understood the problem with the silicone spray was that it tended to dry out and didn't lube the cables very well.



The aerosol propellant dries quickly, leaving a film of dry silicone behind. This is perfect, it lubricates without attracting dirt that increases cutaway pull forces. It doesn't need to be wet to lubricate.

Derek V

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lyosha

***I've found food grade silicone spray in SCUBA diving shops.



This stuff?

http://www.leisurepro.com/p-AQU5SP2/500-psi-silicone-spray?gclid=CNqqvu_X78cCFVNufgod7dINtw&kwid=productads-plaid^18283950120-sku^AQU5SP2@ADL4LP-adType^PLA-device^c-adid^56051352613

I'm not familiar with that brand, but it looks similar to what I have.
"It's amazing what you can learn while you're not talking." - Skydivesg

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hackish

I called UPT a number of years ago and they suggested 3 in 1 oil or sewing machine oil so I've been using that ever since.



As another data point, I saw a 2005 thread where Bill Booth said a good silicone lube like ACE's is what they use. I don't know if opinions changed or whether which choice one makes it isn't set in stone at UPT. (I haven't mined the threads for more recent info.)

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Hooknswoop

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I always understood the problem with the silicone spray was that it tended to dry out and didn't lube the cables very well.



The aerosol propellant dries quickly, leaving a film of dry silicone behind. This is perfect, it lubricates without attracting dirt that increases cutaway pull forces. It doesn't need to be wet to lubricate.

Derek V



I put a bit on a squeaky door hinge and a squeaky office chair several years ago and they've been completely silent ever since.
"It's amazing what you can learn while you're not talking." - Skydivesg

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Hooknswoop

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I always understood the problem with the silicone spray was that it tended to dry out and didn't lube the cables very well.



The aerosol propellant dries quickly, leaving a film of dry silicone behind. This is perfect, it lubricates without attracting dirt that increases cutaway pull forces. It doesn't need to be wet to lubricate.

Derek V



^This. The liquid is just a carrier. The idea that the lube "dries out" or that the cables "absorb it" is flat out wrong.
"There are NO situations which do not call for a French Maid outfit." Lucky McSwervy

"~ya don't GET old by being weak & stupid!" - Airtwardo

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Every time this comes up someone states that John Sherman does not like Silicon and prefers 3 in 1 oil. Most riggers have been trained to use food grade silicon. Followers of Sherman shake their heads at the rest of us and use the oil. Bottom line is keep your cables clean and lubricated. And understand that Parachute Labs uses a different material to coat the cable than everyone else does.




It has been my experience that John is correct on this one.

The yellow coating on the cable (Lolon) is hydroscopic which means that it will absorb the oil.

When you use 3 in 1 the cables will become more flexible and pliable than if you simply use a silicon spray. Just shake the cables before oiling and again afterward and you can see and fell the difference.

A simple test is to pull test the cables with a scale. Test cables with silicon and ones with 3 in 1 and you will note the difference.

I still teach my students to use 3 in 1 and to let it soak in. I also teach them that oil does not attract dirt, it may hold it place, but it does not attract it.

Jump shack did not start using the red cables (Teflon) until maybe 1997 or somewhere about there, so before that they did use the standard use yellow cables. So they did have some previous experience with Lolon.

I remember when the silicone started to be used. IFIRC, it started with a group of SCUBA divers that were also skydivers. They used the silicone on their SCUBA gear on a regular basis, started using it for the 3 ring cables, told their friends that is was the cat's meow and a trend was started.

Afterward, hard housings started coming to market to offset hard pulls. Some of these hard pulls were due to twisted risers but not all.

BTW, you are very much correct on the need to clean and oil regularly no matter what lubricate you use.


MEL
Skyworks Parachute Service, LLC
www.Skyworksparachuteservice.com

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masterrigger1

A simple test is to pull test the cables with a scale. Test cables with silicon and ones with 3 in 1 and you will note the difference.



Have you repeated this same test after the cables have been installed for a month or longer? Is there still a noticeable difference?

Is this the version that you use?

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What Hookenswoop said; that's why it's called a "dry lubricant".
(Cypres loops are pulled thru the silicone pad, and the lube is considered fine for 6 months.)
When a yellow cable is pulled at repack time it is still slick to the touch. Silicone works. Spraying it with the Ace Hardware silicone or pull it thru the Cypres lube pad. I much prefer the spray now.

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Good news is that after the SB from vector just about every rigger around has a can of silicone lube. Since I do all the rigs at the DZ every 6 weeks it would be trivial and interesting to do some repeated pull tests for a season on rigs lubed with oil and lubed with silicone.

-Michael

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How are you guys applying the 3-in-1 oil? I just finished repacking my reserve today, so perfect time to experiment. Went to Home Depot to get 3-in-1, applied several drops to a paper towel, wiped down both cables. After that, used a dry paper towel to remove excess. The cable didn't feel particularly slick to the touch and I had to continue feeding the left side at the Collin's lanyard because it kept getting stuck.

Pulled it out, wiped off any remaining oil as best as I could, and went back to CYPRES silicone. I apply some silicone to the pad that comes with the CYPRES rigger kit, run the cable through it a few times, then wipe the excess with a dry paper towel. After guiding the cable into the left housing, I could easily push it through at the handle. There is also noticeably less friction when pulling the cable back out.

I've never tried the spray, but between 3-in-1 and silicone gel, the latter seems to work better. I don't know about long-term performance.

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I just have a rag that I use to lube and clean the cables all in 1 shot. I soak a spot on the rag, a lot more than a few drops...

I tried last night to get a good accurate measure of the pull force but I need a smaller more sensitive scale. I think too the force required to cutaway is much less than the force required to pop the reserve.

-Michael

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How are you guys applying the 3-in-1 oil?



Good question.

I use a paper towel and wet an area with the oil. I repeatedly wipe and clean the cables with this full length.
I then let it stand a 3-4 minutes and then use another clean area of the paper towel and more oil. This time leaving a trace film of oil the entire length of the cables.

I have never tried the silicone gel. Who knows it may be a better idea.

MEL
Skyworks Parachute Service, LLC
www.Skyworksparachuteservice.com

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