NEW TOOL PUTS THE BUST ON GREASE.
Reprinted from Agri-Alternatives “Invention” column
written by Michael Hofferber Nov/Dec 1996
There’s hardly a farmer in the country who hasn’t
cursed at a plugged up grease fitting. Last year’s dried
grease can make this year’s fitting virtually immovable.
Custom hay baler and retired shop teacher Paul
Michener of Wayneville, Ohio, counted himself among
those perennially frustrated farm mechanics up until two
years ago when a particularly stubborn fitting on a baler
inspired the invention of a tool that’s changed his life.
“This is a tool that I’ve needed forever,” say Michener,
holding up an eight-inch cylinder with a piston at one end
and a hydraulic grease gun coupler at the other end.
Using pourable penetrating oil, Michener places his
tool on the grease fitting and forces the solvent inside by
taping on a knob at the top end of the piston. As he taps,
the solvent forces its way into the fitting and loosens it for
greasing. “Now I can grease bearings in just a few minutes,
whereas before, it took almost a half-hour per bearing,”
the inventor points out.
Michener assumes he could find a tool like the one he
needed, but after searching stores and catalogs and finding
nothing similar, he decided to build his own. Locating
a grease gun coupler and a small piston was no problem,
but he had to contract with a local tool and die maker to
make a miniature hydraulic cylinder for the tool.
Shortly after constructing ten of the tools, Michener
sold five and gave four others to friends and relatives. The
response was so encouraging that he quickly set to work
making 50 more. Patented and trademarked as the Grease
BusterTM, Michener’s tool has been displayed at Midwest
trade shows and is now available in retail shops and by
mail order directly from the inventor.
Michener recommends using a solid fluid solvent with
the Grease BusterTM not an aerosol. A good tap on the piston
will force the liquid into a stubborn fitting.