Rock Drill Lubrication #OilChat 65

Pneumatic tools are used extensively in the mining, quarrying and construction industries. Pneumatic tools (also known as air tools)  are power tools driven by compressed air supplied by air compressors.  Air tools come in various shapes and sizes, ranging from small hand tools to jackhammers (paving breakers) and massive rig mounted units as shown on the right.

Air tools generate more power in relation to their weight than conventional power tools and they are amongst the most indestructible power tools available. Many of them, however, fail prematurely. One of the root causes for this is the use of incorrect or substandard lubricants.

Blue Chip offers a complete range of quality lubricants to keep your air tools and rock drills where they belong – in production. Included in the range are:

Compo air compressor oils are formulated to meet the most demanding requirements of both rotary and reciprocating compressors. The outstanding oxidation stability of the synthetic variants makes them ideal for air compressors operating at very high pressures and temperatures. Compo is available in all relevant viscosity grades which makes it suitable for a wide variety of applications.

Rockdrill Oil RD-C is a range of high quality lubricants designed for use in heavy duty rotary and percussion type pneumatic tools. The product line includes all universal viscosity grades making them fit for use in a vast selection of equipment and operating conditions.

Rockdrill Grease is a high performance, semi-fluid lubricant optimised for percussion-type air tools. It is particularly suitable for use as an in-line lubricant for rock drills in applications where operating conditions are severe. Rockdrill Grease extends equipment life, even in the presence of highly corrosive underground mine water.

Rockdrill Emulsion is an environmentally friendly, water-in-oil emulsion recommended for use in heavy duty pneumatic tools – rock drills in particular. Rockdrill Emulsion reduces misting to provide cleaner, safer working  conditions and improved operator comfort.

Drill Rod Grease RD-W300 is specifically designed for the lubrication and protection of rock drill drilling rods. It is formulated to control friction between the rod and the rock strata and thereby reducing rotational torque and vibration, resulting in improved productivity.

Rock drills are designed to take lots of ‘hammering’ but without proper lubrication they simply dont last. The Blue Chip rock drill product portfolio is formulated to lubricate and protect air-operated equipment effectively for extended periods of time.

For more information phone 011 462 1829, email us at or visit Our lubricant experts are at your disposal and ready to provide you with advice and answer any questions you may have.

All About AdBlue #OilChat 64

If you own a new diesel vehicle, you are likely to have to keep it topped up with a special liquid that eliminates harmful gasses being released into the atmosphere…


AdBlue is a diesel exhaust fluid used in vehicles with Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology to reduce Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) in the exhaust gases of diesel engines. Nitrogen Oxides are a family of poisonous, highly reactive gases that is formed when fuel is burned at high temperatures.

NOx emissions form smog and acid rain and is central to the formation of fine particles (particulate matter or PM) and ground level ozone, both of which are associated with adverse health effects. NOx mainly impacts on respiratory conditions causing inflammation of the airways. Long term exposure can decrease lung function, increase the risk of respiratory conditions and escalates the response to allergens.

AdBlue is stored in a separate tank from the vehicle’s diesel fuel. When the  engine is running, tiny amounts of AdBlue are squirted into the exhaust gas to convert the NOx into harmless nitrogen and water.

Many diesel cars registered after September 2015 use AdBlue to reduce emissions. If you drive an emission-compliant diesel Audi, BMW, Citroën, Jaguar, Land Rover, M-B, Peugeot or VW, it is likely to use AdBlue technology. There is often a clue in the car’s model name, which may have ‘Blue’ or ‘SCR’ in it. Owners of light and heavy commercial vehicle equipped with SCR technology and meeting the Euro IV, V or Euro VI standards will also need AdBlue.

Most AdBlue tank fillers points are situated next to the diesel filler neck, and they usually have a blue cap. Other common places for fillers include the boot and spare wheel well. If you are not sure, the owner’s handbook should tell you the location.

Good news is that AdBlue is now available at competitive prices from your trusted oil supplier. The AdBlue supplied by Blue Chip Lubricants is a bright and clear, non-toxic mixture of the purest urea available and de-ionised water. For more details please phone 011 462 1829, email us at  or visit

UTTO vs TO-4 Fluid #OilChat 63

TO-4 Fluid should not be confused with Universal Tractor Transmission Oil (UTTO).  Although both TO-4 fluids and UTTOs are designed for wet brake applications, they are NOT interchangeable since they have different physical and chemical characteristics – frictional properties in particular.

TO-4 Fluid originates from the Caterpillar TO-4 Transmission Oil specification. TO-4 has become a standard term used within industry for this specific type of additive/fluid. Construction machinery, for which TO-4 fluids are intended, is normally much bigger and heavier than agricultural equipment. A high level of friction is therefore required to ensure that these heavy machines can stop on steep inclines, such as access roads down open cast mines. This necessitates TO-4 fluids to have a high coefficient of friction.


UTTO, also referred to as Tractor Hydraulic Fluid (THF) or Transmission, Differential and Hydraulic (TDH) fluid, is mainly used in agricultural applications. They are however sometimes recommended for construction machines, such as Bell ATDs. Tractor size and weight are limited since they need to use public roads, hence less friction is required to stop agricultural equipment. UTTOs therefore have a much lower coefficient of friction than TO-4 Fluids.

A wrong fluid in wet brake applications will affect fluid/brake surface interaction and decrease braking performance with possible catastrophic consequences. If an UTTO is used where a TO-4 fluid is specified, braking efficiency will be reduced, resulting in increased stopping time and distance. Using a TO-4 Fluid where a UTTO is recommended will cause very bad vibrations and brake chatter, leading to heavy wear and failure of components.

Acquaint yourself with the fluids recommended by your equipment manufacturer, have them on hand and pay attention to tractor and equipment service intervals. If in doubt our experts are at your disposal, ready to provide you with advice and to answer any questions you may have. For more information mail us at

Automotive Gear Oil #OilChat 62

Automotive gear lubrication is a very interesting but often rather controversial subject. We have discussed the topic in previous editions of our newsletter but there still appear to be grey areas surrounding the issue. We have therefore deemed it fit to revisit the subject with specific focus on API GL-6 gear oil.

Lubricants for automotive gear applications are classified by the American Petroleum Institute (API) by means of GL ratings. For easy reference we have summarised the API classifications as follows:

API Categories GL-1, GL-2, GL-3 and GL-6 have been declared inactive even though oils may still be marketed with these designations. Performance tests associated with these categories can no longer be run because parts or test installations are not available anymore – the API GL-6 test protocol in particular.

Raison d’etre for API GL-6 surfaced in the mid 1960’s when Ford needed better protection in their pickup trucks and GM developed the revolutionary front wheel drive Oldsmobile Toronado.

The V8 powered Toronado had a differential with a very high angle of gear contact for power transmission to the front wheels.

The abnormal angle of contact was the result of a differential with a very high pinion offset (discussed in OilChat No. 14) hence a higher gear oil category had to be developed. This category was later defined as AP GL-6 and the Toronado differential was actually used in the API GL-6 test procedure.

Interesting to note is that in addition to the higher pinion offset, the 1966 and 1967 model Toronados had sun gears instead of spider gears between the axle shafts. The power packed V8 Toronados also suffered from high temperatures in the engine compartment and very high loads and pressures in the drive train.

API GL-6 level of protection is still claimed by some oil manufacturers but can no longer be evaluated since Oldsmobile stopped producing the Toronado differentials many years ago. A shift to more modest pinion offsets and the obsolescence of API GL-6 test equipment have greatly reduced the commercial use of API GL-6 gear lubricants. Nevertheless, some manufacturers of high-performance cars still specify this level of extreme-pressure performance for their vehicles.

If you have any questions regarding gear oil or any other lubricant related issues, simply mail us at Our experts are at your disposal and ready to provide you with advice and guidance

Bicycle Service Products #OilChat 61

We all know that history has the tendency to repeat itself, although very seldom precisely. Since the first two-wheeler hit the road, way back in 1817, there had been several specific historic periods of time marked by increased bicycle enthusiasm, popularity and sales. After the invention of  pneumatic tyres in 1887, the bicycle was the ultimate must-have, with females being the most ardent supporters of cycling.

It offered swift, affordable and stylish transportation that could take you anywhere you cared to go, anytime you liked and for free. Fast forward the clock about a hundred years and we saw a renewed interest in cycling, triggered mainly by an upper-class passion for health and fitness. By 1990 mountain biking was a new sport that boosted pedal-power to the flavour of the time, even more so today.

Modern bikes are a far cry from the ‘boneshakers’ of yesteryear. Nowadays MTBs are packed with state-of-the-art technology, such as carbon fibre frames, front forks with coil springs, dropper seatposts, hydraulic disc brakes, electronic gears and more. Notwithstanding this array of cutting-edge features, maintenance still plays a critical role in the efficient and reliable operation of bicycles. Blue Chip Lubricants offers a complete range of products to assist you in doing just that. Some of the key products in the range are:


Brakz is a high-performance fluid especially designed for use in hydraulic brake systems fitted to modern mountain bikes. Due to its special formulation, Blue Chip Brakz is suitable for all cycle brake systems that require mineral or synthetic based brake fluid. Brakz is dyed green for easy identification and is available in handy resealable 125 ml plastic sachets.


Chainz is specifically formulated to lubricate the chains and sprockets of both on- and off-road bicycles. The wax-based formulation provides maximum film strength and resists throw-off, even at high speeds. Blue Chip Chainz controls oil, grease and grime build up to eliminate the  formation of detrimental ‘grinding paste’. Chainz comes in 125 ml sachets.


Degreaz is a multi-purpose water-based degreasing fluid suitable for a wide variety of cleaning applications. It is environmentally friendly, biodegradable and non-flammable. It is a cost-effective solution for stubborn greasy dirt and grime that have accumulated over extended periods of time. Blue Chip Degreaz is available in convenient 250 ml plastic sachets for quick and easy use by cycling enthusiasts.


The range also includes penetrating oil spray, grease, etc. To learn more about the complete range of Blue Chip Lubricants’ bicycle service and maintenance products, phone 011 462 1829, email us at  or visit