Welcome To P8ntballer.com
The Home Of European Paintball
Sign Up & Join In

Dow 33 & dow 55


Now I originate.............
Jan 6, 2009
Crystal lake
While buying some lube for my markers i found this articale on a site selling dow corning /molykote products and thought it relevent to cut and paste it here as it may answer some questions.:)

General questions regarding paintball marker applications:

IS DOW 33 THE SAME AS MOLYKOTE® 33?In one word, YES. Now, the longer answer. The full name of the product is "Dow Corning® Molykote® 33 Extreme Low Temperature Bearing Grease" (try to say that 3 times fast with your paintball mask on!). Molykote® is a registered trademark owned by Dow Corning®. Molykote was not originally a Dow brand; Dow purchased the Alpha-Molykote Co. in 1964.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DOW 33 and DOW 55?Both are silicone based, but the additives are slightly different. Dow 33 contains a Lithium soap thickener (Lithium Stearate) which acts as a lubricant with metal surfaces and is widely used in heavy-duty industrial grade greases. DOW 33 is considered to be a bearing grease because of the excellent service it provides with metal components as well as with plastic and rubber parts. Dow Corning states: "These greases (referring to DOW 33, 41 and 44) do not soften or affect most plastics and are used to lubricate plastic gears, bearings and cams, as well as metal and rubber parts. Because of low torque requirements, Molykote® 33 Extreme Low Temperature Bearing Grease is specially effective in equipment that must start in extreme cold." DOW 55, on the other hand, while containing some Lithium Stearate, also contains a plasticizer additive and is specifically designed to swell o-rings and seals and is recommended for dynamic lubrication between rubber and metal parts in pneumatic systems in aircraft, automotive and general industrial applications. Dow Corning states about DOW 55: "A silicone-based material that helps ensure positive lubrication and sealing by slightly swelling rubber O-rings and seals." As far as physical properties, DOW 33 and DOW 55 are very similar except that DOW 33 has about half the "break-away torque" (the amount of force required to begin motion on the lubricated surface) of DOW 55, and DOW 33 has a wider service temperature range (-100ºF to 400ºF) than DOW 55 (-85ºF to 347ºF). Paintball marker manufacturers have designed their equipment to perform better using specific lubricants and DOW 33 is recommended by some while others recommend DOW 55. It is advisable to consult your equipment manufacturer or other reliable source before using a lubricant other than that originally recommended for your equipment.
There are just very minor differences between the two. The two have the same viscosity and the same temperature service range, but DOW 33 MEDIUM has a slightly thicker consistency. DOW 33 MEDIUM has a tiny bit higher "break-away torque" than DOW 33 LIGHT, although when you talk about a difference of just .034 Newton-meters (.025 foot-pounds of force) break-away torque between the two, it gets into splitting-hairs territory. Also, the break-away torque of DOW 33 MEDIUM is still about 50% less than that of DOW 55 which is also recommended by marker manufacturers. DOW 33 MEDIUM has less (about half) "oil separation" and "bleed" than DOW 33 LIGHT which esentially means DOW 33 MEDIUM stays in place better at higher temperatures. DOW 33 and DOW 55 both have a National Lubricating Grease Institute (NLGI) consistency of #2 while DOW 33 LIGHT is NLGI #1. It is difficult to say which of DOW 33 MEDIUM or DOW 33 LIGHT would perform better since it would depend on the equipment, the firing rate and outdoor temperatures. Some manufacturers recommend DOW 33 without specifying MEDIUM or LIGHT while a few do specify one or the other. Smart Parts "SL33K" brand lube (also known as SLEEK or SLEEK 33) has been reported by some online sources to be repackaged DOW 33 MEDIUM.
Last edited: