Lubrication System of Sling Rope | Wire Rope Lubricants


When we are in the field of lubrication & tribology, then it is essential for us as well as for our readers to know about the all the essential application lubrication process. Sling rope or Wire rope is a multiple  strands of metal wire twisted into a helix forming a composite rope & the pattern known as laid rope. Larger diameter wire rope consists of multiple strands of such laid ropes. Approximately all types of major industries generally we are talking about like Steel, Cement Product, Mining, Construction etc, we can see wire ropes used to transfer heavy loaded materials from one place to another by lifting or hoisting in cranes and elevators. Wire ropes are also used to transmission of mechanical powers. Sling ropes can be differentiate by their configuration of material, wire & strand structure. 

Different types of Wire ropes are used for different purposes in lifting applications like –

  • By means of strength, it should carry highly loaded materials & measured by tons.
  • By means of Flexibility, It should not too hard that if load came then its break down.
  • Wire ropes should be abrasion resistant means wire ropes should capable to protect actual wearing away of metal from the outer wires of the rope.
  • Crushing resistance ability is the ability to resist external forces & the term crushing resistance used to differentiate properties of different ropes.
  • Fatigue resistance is also another property required in wired ropes where it is required to bend repeatedly under stress.
  • Corrosion resistance ability is one of very important factors for wire ropes used in sea or beaches area.
  • Rotation resistance is also another importer property of sling ropes.
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By these types of abilities & properties, we can understand that every types of wire ropes are has different personality & it is a reflection of an engineer’s design. Wire rope consists of three basic components, while few in numbers, these vary in both complexity and configuration, each wire rope is made to produce a required combination of operating characteristics as per the performance requirements of the work, or the application.

The three basic components of a standard wire rope design are

  • Wires (that form the strands)
  • The core
  • Multi-wire strand: laid helically around a core.

Why it is required to lubricate the Wire Rope

Wire rope is made up of number of stands of wire. While application of load these metal stands of wire move over one another, which produces friction. Wire rope is wound around a wire drum, which is a metallic body. Wire ropes moves on the pulleys, and it is a metal body. These metal to metal contact leads to wear, and by lubrication of wire rope, we can avoid. Slow down the wear rate. In addition, extend the life of wire rope by lubrication.   

Functional requirement of a lubricant

  • It protects the rope from wear.
  • It acts as a sealing media for dust and dirt.
  • It should have a better adhesion.
  • After the application of lubricant, the rope should be ready to use.

If you are in the steel plant then Casters are the one of the vital application for steel plant.

Wire Rope Lubrication requirements

  • Lubricants should be easy to apply on the sling ropes outer surface manually or the lubricants is in liquid form then wire ropes can be dipped in the liquid form of lubricants.
  • It should not drip on the surface & surface should not look tacky.
  • The lubricant should penetrate the core to give lubricity and better functioning. As it is one of the most important criteria of wire rope lubricants selection, Lubricants should have good creeping property.
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Proper Lubricant selection for Wire Rope or Sling rope lubrication

  • One of most important quality should have in Sling rope lubricant is creeping property. So, What is creeping property? It is a property of a lubricant by which lubricant quickly penetrates to the core of the wire ropes. It is always require that for wire rope application that lubricant does not only lubricate the outer area of the rope but its penetrate the core & lubricate the core. This property ensures that the rope is lubricated throughout while providing a non-drying, non-tacky film on the outside of the rope. Wire rope lubricant protects rope outer strands from corrosion as well as lubricating the wire rope drums and sheaves.
  • Lubricant should be Stronger resistant to oxidation and should have better film stability.
  • Lubricant should have higher base oil viscosity & should have better load carrying capacity at low speed with good sealing property.
  • Both the lower and upper working temperature of the lubricant should be higher side.
  • Presence of Mox active, i.e, organic molybdenum complex compound or any types of solid lubricant will be able to provide protection to surface wear and reduces the generation of friction.
  • In some industry it is also found, that Bitumen based wire rope lubricants is used. Bitumen based lubricants works well as a wire rope lubricant but The IARC recently identified that exposure to oxidized bitumen and its emissions are probably carcinogenic to humans & having the potential to cancer.

You can also read below articles for more information.

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