Leadership

MISCELLANY

Issue 29 and Volume 1887 1.

MISCELLANY TALLOW AS A LUBRICANT. REMARKING upon the fact that some engineers still use tallow as a cylinder lubricant, a writer in a mechanical journal asserts that they do so at the risk of destroying the surfaces of valve seats, piston rings and even the cylinder itself; this follows from the nature of the tallow, which is a compound of several fatty acids, oleic, stearic, margaric. It is erroneously supposed that pure grease is the base of all tallow and that the acids, so-called, are in some way incorporated in the process of rendering, but the fact is that no system of refining can eliminate the acid without destroying or neutralizing the grease itself, in a measure saponifying or turning it into soap. Again, clear suet is often used, but this does not remedy the evil, the danger to surfaces still remaining ; the steam heat decomposes the tallow or…

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