Took apart air hammer, nothing inside, simple

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Jan 20, 2017
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I took apart a brand new HF Chicago Pneumatic medium barrel air hammer as I was curious what was inside, how complicated it was inside to require a "special" air tool oil. There was nothing inside, nothing complicated. I unscrewed the black barrel, inside there was a flat round disk with alignment holes that pushes against a small piston 1/2" x 1 1 /2" that drops inside the barrel. The trigger allows air into the barrel of course. I used synthetic oil on the moving parts and reassembled. There's no reason to use a special oil. I don't know if a more expensive air hammer is more complicated.
 
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That's quite interesting. I've never had one apart and assumed there was much more to it. I would guess the better brands (Ingersoll-Rand, Chicago Pneumatic) have much harder grades of steel to increase their life. I believe you meant to say HF <span style="text-decoration: underline">Central</span> Pneumatic.
 
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Now you know why air tools were one of the first tools to be offshored. Most of them are very simple mechanically. I use ATF in my air tools, I'm pretty sure air tool oil is just 10-15W mineral oil.
Originally Posted by Piston_slap
I believe you meant to say HF Central Pneumatic.
Maybe it was an intentional malapropism?
 
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I was in NAPA a few years back and saw a mechanic buying a gallon of Marvel Mystery Oil.. i had to ask him what he was using it for.. hoping to get a good story.. He said his shop has about 50 air tools and thats all they use for air tool oil.. said never had an issue out of any guns in 25 years using it.
 
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Originally Posted by spasm3
If i remember, MolaKule has suggested that ATF is all you need for air tools.
Does that include smaller tools, like a brad nailer? I've been meaning to buy some "special lube" for a recently acquired tool. I've been using a very light weight "3 in 1 oil" so far.
 
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When I worked in the tire shop in 1969-70 at the end of the day we 'fogged' the air guns with Marvel.
 
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Originally Posted by ecotourist
Originally Posted by spasm3
If i remember, MolaKule has suggested that ATF is all you need for air tools.
Does that include smaller tools, like a brad nailer? I've been meaning to buy some "special lube" for a recently acquired tool. I've been using a very light weight "3 in 1 oil" so far.
I use atf on my air gun, and ratchet. Now for my nail guns, i don't use ATF. I worry that ATF will get in the the wood and affect how polyurethane adheres. I use WD-40 in my nail guns, as it will evaporate completely from wood in a short time. I apply it with every use.
 
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Originally Posted by krismoriah72
I was in NAPA a few years back and saw a mechanic buying a gallon of Marvel Mystery Oil.. i had to ask him what he was using it for.. hoping to get a good story.. He said his shop has about 50 air tools and thats all they use for air tool oil.. said never had an issue out of any guns in 25 years using it.
Marvel has a special air tool oil or conditioner or something seperate from straight up MMO. If you are a DIY you shouldn't be oiling air tools every time you use them. If I was using a nail gun five days a week, eight hours a day I would MAYBE oil it twice a week, probably just once. They get all oily and gross. The small air tool oil bottles always get lost or leak so I use a syringe filled with ATF. They are 10cc syringes I think, if you keep the cap they work really well. You should not use a premixed oil like PB blaster, 3n1 or WD40. Those have more than just oil in them and you could say the same about ATF, but I'm pretty sure ATF is simpler than those.
 
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Originally Posted by spasm3
If i remember, MolaKule has suggested that ATF is all you need for air tools.
ATF is all that I use. Many years in fact, all without any issues.
 
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I use Marvel Air Tool Oil, which FTR is not the same as MMO, if that matters. shrug Anyway I bought a quart for the cost of a quart of a synthetic ATF from a local True Value hardware store. I figure the quart should last me a very long time.
 
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If they don't say use air tool oil some dude will be using chainsaw bar lube/etc. Plus every company wants you to buy their branded oil. I can't remember if HF was selling Mabil or Bennsoil air tool oil. It's amazing how well HF was able to corrupt Chicago Pneumatic's name. I picked up a couple 75% off Chicago pneumatic impacts the other day. I asked my brother if he wanted one. "Those are HF." "No they're not." "You sure?" "Yes." "I don't think I want one."
 
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