To lube or not to lube? That's a question frequently asked of our tech expert, Tim Laflin. In this edition of Tech Talk, Tim discusses whether you should take advantage of those lube ports that Campagnolo so conveniently provides on your hubs . . .

I have gotten a lot of mail asking this question.

I have lube ports on my Campy Hubs and I want to grease them. What should I use? Campy does not call for any grease in the instructions.

Campy used to make a full line of lubricants. They have quit doing this. The hub grease that they used to sell was called Krysalis. It was a very light almost watery Vaseline looking lube. It was light enough to inject and have it flow to the bearings, but still allow the pawls to clear it out. The thick lubes just gum up the springs and pawls and it takes forever to clear out.

Campy`s current recommendation for the general public is to not injection lube the hubs. The danger here is if you use a thick viscous grease it interferes with the pawl engagement and shortens the life of the hub and pawls. It also causes increased drag from the hub. So why do we chuck out all the cash on the grease ports? The real fact of the mater is that a once a season rebuild is probably all the hubs need and injecting grease is not needed. If you are a competitive racer, and you don't mind the mess the injection ports can be used with a heavy weight gear oil to lube the bearings. It tends to get messy and need to be done often. The excess lube will run out of the hub to and down the spokes and all over the place. Once you commit to injecting you are sort of stuck. It is a little less drag friction wise, but a big drag for keeping you and the bike clean.

For John Q Public, don't inject and just repack the bearings once and season. If your favorite past time is bike cleaning you can benefit from injection lubing.

Tim Laflin

We created this page on Oct. 29, 1997

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