Thanks to all who discussed lube methods and materials for wood to
metal bearings such as band organ pump sticks. I used the lithium
soap based teflon grease from Nye Lubricants. It seems from the
consensus of experts that several things are used with success, and
I'll add this experiment to the list. The material is nice and clean,
similar in consistency to some of the white hand soaps in pump bottles.
I was pretty sure that the grease would work ok, and was interested to
hear if the teflon had any known properties to cause any problems.
Re: the soap-base of the product, I am reminded of a friend who has
built many guitars and also plays fiddle. He told me some time ago that
soap and chalk were the two substances used for adjusting the friction
of fiddle pegs. The soap is for making them slip and the chalk for
friction. I don't know any more about the details of this from
experience, but it makes sense and sounds reasonable. And, of course
we know that grease is oil with a thickener, usually soap.
One more question on the pump sticks -- where they attach to the
bellows. This is a separate piece of wood that is wide and flat with
a flap of wood on the top and a hole through both pieces for the
bellows journal to slide in. My next question is, the hole in the
bearing that faces the side of the organ (about 3/4-1")--is this for
adding lubricant without disconnecting the rods, or just to make the
friction surface smaller?