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1951 Vincent Rapide - Part 87 - Grease Is The Word

Robert Watson

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Hi Mike.
I once bought a B Rapide that had been off the road from 1958 until 2000. Every year the conscientious owner started it up and rode it around his property and lubricated everything. First time I drove it down the road it had only what I could describe as Flintstone brakes: ie. to stop one applied liberal force from the bottom of ones boots to the tarmac, as Fred did to stop his vehicle. Upon inspection all four brake drum were packed pretty much solid with more than 40 years of service!

The next one I had fun with was the one on the steering head which basically just goes into a large cavity well above the head race lower bearings. I had a consistent oil leak onto my front head and of course discovered when the whole plot got nice and warm the grease turned liquid and ran out of some holes conveniently drilled in the UFM to allow such a thing.

I also find it a bit silly that Messers Vincent and Irving would design those front forks with bushings and spindles and basically no provision for lubrication. All mine, Girdraulic or Brampton equipped have the spindles drilled and cross drilled to allow full lubrication of all those moving parts. I think especially important in climates like the we(s)t coast of Canada and pretty much all of the UK, and many other damp climates around the planet.

Cheers and keep up the good work.

Peter Holmes

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
For wheel bearings I use Penrite wheel bearing grease, for everything else I use a grease that has graphite or moly added to it, CV grease works well, my Son works on heavy plant machinery and I find his supply of free Kubuto Moly grease works well also, I just feel that if the grease does dry out or disappear it leaves a little grey stuff behind to continue lubrication.

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