The problem with using grease is that it'll stay where you put it, and
not only will vibrations be more likely to cause the nuts and bolts you
use it on to come loose, but dust will stick to it, potentially causing
Go to any pharmacy and buy a 3 fluid ounce bottle of glycerine for about
$3. Glycerine has all of the properties of a light oil, but it's
actually an alcohol and so it evaporates completely without leaving any
So, you can use the glycerine as a light oil for assembling part with
the knowledge that after the assembly is complete, the oil will
evaporate completely so the assembly won't be affected by vibrations
causing the nuts and bolts to loosen, or airborne dust sticking to and
remaining on the assembled parts.
For example, supposed you wanted to push a rubber handle bar grip onto a
chrome plated steel bicycle handle bar. The co-efficient of friction
between rubber and steel is high, and so pushing it on without a
lubricant is gonna be a fight. But, if you use a lubricant like grease,
the grips will slide off as easily as they slid on. So, use glycerine
as the lubricant, and then leave the grips alone for a couple of days
for the glycerine to evaporate out of the microscopic gap between the
steel and the rubber. That way, you enjoy the benefits of having used a
lubricant to get the grips to slide on easily and the benefits of not
having used a lubricant in that the grips don't slide off easily, both
at the same time.
Here's another example. If you've got an old weathered wood window
frame to repaint, do you repaint first and then caulk the joints, or do
you caulk the joints and then paint? If you caulk first, you're going
to want to tool the caulk with a soapy solution on your finger. And, if
that soapy solution gets onto the old dry wood, it'll get absorbed and
then the paint won't stick to that wood unless you spend a lot of time
washing the residual soap out of the wood. An alternative is to tool
the joint with glycerine on your fingers. Then, the glycerine will
evaporate out of the wood completely over a couple of days, and you can
proceed directly with painting.
Ya gotta know this stuff to be king.