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Technical Concept – Wire Rope and it’s Lubrication


Understanding Wire Rope and it's Lubrication

Wire Rope is a critical component in so many industrial applications across the world. Wire ropes simply comprise of continuous wire strands wound around a central core & are commonly used in crane, tower crane, surface and underground mining, excavation, logging of any type of terrain, tramway, elevator, oil and gas, drilling, marine and electrical constructions etc.

Components Of Wire Ropes


Wires are the smallest component of wire rope and they make up the individual strands in the rope. Wires can be made from a variety of metal materials including steel, iron, stainless steel and bronze. The wires can be manufactured in a variety of grades that relate to the strength, resistance to wear, fatigue resistance, corrosion resistance, and curve of the wire rope.


Strands of wire rope consist of two or more wires arranged and twisted in a specific arrangement. The individual strands are then laid in a helical pattern around the core of the rope.


The core of a wire rope runs through the centre of the rope and supports the strands and helps to maintain their relative position under loading and bending stresses. Cores can be made from a number of different materials including natural or synthetic fibres and steel.

Designation Of Wire Rope

A typical strand and wire designation is 6×19. This denotes a rope made up of six strands with 19 wires in each strand.

Wire ropes faces two types of the working conditions in its life span:

1. Static

Static ropes are employed to support structures like buildings, bridges etc. As there is no movement, wire strands don’t offer friction to each other. So there is little need for re-lubrication for this type of wire ropes.

2. Dynamic

Dynamic ropes are utilized in heavy equipment applications for lifting or hauling purposes. In this type of applications wire ropes witnesses critical working conditions like a heavy load, temperatures etc.
Hence it is required to monitor & lubricate these type of wire ropes properly with frequent intervals with the right quantity.

Lubrication Of Wire Ropes

Wire rope lubricants have two principle functions:

  1. To reduce friction as the individual wires move over each other.
  2. To provide corrosion protection and lubrication in the core and inside wires and on the exterior surfaces

Desired Properties Of Wire Rope Lubricants

  1. Should penetrate easily to the core of the wire rope
  2. Should not contain grit, sand, other abrasives, water, chlorine, or similar impurities.
  3. Must be water-resistant and non-emulsifying.
  4. Should be free of additives and compounds which result in corrosive reactions or degeneration.
  5. Should ensure flexibility of wire rope is maintained over a longer period

Lubrication Methods to be adopted

1. Penetrating Type

Penetrating lubricants contain an evaporative solvent that facilitates migration of the lubricant into the core of the wire rope, then evaporates, leaving behind a heavy lubricating film that protects and lubricates each strand.

2. Coating Type

Coating lubricants penetrate slightly and seal the outside of the cable from moisture, reducing wear, rust and corrosion.

3. Combination Of Penetrating & Coating Type

Depends upon requirements we can adopt a combination of both to get required results

Mosil's Solution

Penetrating Type Wire Rope Lubricants

WR – 100 : Lubricant fortified with high-quality Molybdenum Disulfide for excellent lubrication effect
WR – 101 : Quick & efficient way to lubricate wire rope
WR – 100P : Heavy-duty adhesive type wire rope fluid (finished film)

Key Benefits

1. Penetrates into inner strands providing effective lubrication
2. Ensures long lasting thin water & corrosion resistant film on the rope
3. Extends re – lubrication interval
4. Withstands heavy load


To sustain the life of wire rope, it is necessary to adequately re-lubricate them at regular intervals.
Rope tests show that the service life of a regularly re-lubricated wire rope is two to three times longer than that of a dry rope.
MOSIL offers new generation wire rope lubricants that provide efficient re-lubrication of the wire ropes thus ensuring longer life of the wire ropes.


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