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Why Does Gear Oil Smell So Bad?

Discussion in 'The Greasy Spoon' started by oldmodman, Aug 8, 2012.

  1. oldmodman

    oldmodman Well-Known Member Established Member

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    Gear oil smells terrible.
    Regular and synthetic oil smell great (or at least they don't stink)
    What is the component, or components, in gear oil that have such a terrible and impossible to get off you hands reek.
     
  2. UnleashedBeast

    UnleashedBeast Engine Lubrication Guru Established Member

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    If I recall correctly, you are smelling the extreme pressure modifiers in the formulation.

    They reek of sulfur.

     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2012
  3. Jimmysidecarr

    Jimmysidecarr Semi user friendly Established Member

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    Yep it's the sulfur component in the extreme pressure additive.

    Not sure I agree with this though..:dw::shrug:
    Quote:
    Its a bit like flat tappet cams where you have a sliding motion and high pressure at the same time, although not quite as extreme as the tappets.

    If flat tappet cams were more extreme than a ring and pinion they would need an extreme pressure additive. Yet they don't they just need a bit more of the standard zinc and phosphorous (ZDDP) type anti wear additives.
    ____________________________________
     
  4. '03snkbt

    '03snkbt Call it like I see it.... Established Member

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    thought it was more the modifiers rather than the oil itself? friction modifiers smell like ass!!!
     
  5. Jimmysidecarr

    Jimmysidecarr Semi user friendly Established Member

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    That they do!
    But the extreme pressure additive in a GL5 gear lube is going to be the source of the sulfur smell.

    The older blue Ford friction modifier smell was particularly hideous.
    The newer clear stuff is still bad but not nearly as bad as that blue stuff.

    Almost like dead fish!:dw::nonono::xpl:
     
  6. oldmodman

    oldmodman Well-Known Member Established Member

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    That is PRECISELY what I got all over my hands last weekend. I knew I should have worn gloves, but I was just too damn lazy to walk over and get them.
    Been three days and I can still smell it on my hands. I was taking apart an old (at least twenty years) 9" Ford diff that a friend gave me.
     
  7. Jimmysidecarr

    Jimmysidecarr Semi user friendly Established Member

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    You are going to have to wait until the skin wears off.... LOL!:dw::-D:
     
  8. 03dsgdreams

    03dsgdreams Active Member Established Member

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    Lol I know the smell as well.. put a 4.10 in my old 99 cobra and had to use that blue ford friction modifyer. I did the work in my parents garage and they were not happy about it, the garage smelled horrible for months.
     
  9. oldmodman

    oldmodman Well-Known Member Established Member

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    The smell is finally gone.:banana: Took 8 days!:eek:

    But I threw out the shirt. No way was I going to make the washer stink forever.
     
  10. UnleashedBeast

    UnleashedBeast Engine Lubrication Guru Established Member

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    The shirt would never be right again. It would always have the stain and the smell would never go away.
     

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