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Debbie Saville
Posted on Sunday, 18 March, 2001 - 14:13:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Could anyone please tell me how to lubricate the bottom wishbone joint next to the brake drum as I am unable to see any grease nipples etc.
Appreciate your response.
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Bill Vatter
Posted on Sunday, 18 March, 2001 - 14:18:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

The Cloud I suspension is lubricated by a central oiling system called the Bijur. This was used on pre-war cars and continued through the Cloud I, which was the last RR to use it. The Cloud II has grease fittings and different suspension parts.

The Bijur is operated by pressing a foot pedal beneath the dashboard. On the down stroke you are cocking a spring that forces oil to all of the suspension pivots under uniform pressure when you take your foot off the pedal.

A system in good condition should take several seconds for the pedal to come back up as the oil flows to the suspension pivots. Pedal comming up very slowly indicates clogged oil pipes, or most likely a plugged filter that is integral with the pump. Pedal comming up very quickly indicates worn pump components (probably the leather seal), broken oil line somewhere, or (hopefully) an empty Bijur tank. The tank is under the bonnet on the fire wall the pump is inside the tank. There is a screw cap on the top. I use SAE 30 oil in my Silver Wraith that has the same system.

Use the Bijur every day when starting out and every 100 miles thereafter. It is better to pump the Bijur when the car is moving on the road because (1) the pivots take the oil better when they are moving a bit, and (2) less mess on your garage floor from the oil comming out. If your tank has been run dry, you should pump the pedal several strokes to get the lines going everywhere filled back up. On the older cars with manual gearbox, the Bijur also lubricated the clutch release bearing and over use of the Bijur could result in an oily clutch.

Pre-war cars also had brake parts lubricated by the Bijur, and over use could result in oil on the brake linings. However, for your car there is no significant harm in over use of the Bijur....just mess on the garage floor and an increase of the oily mud on the chassis, an attribute the early cars are known for. This oily mess under the car is also a reasonably effective rust preventative for the places it gets to, which is most everything after awhile.

After using the Bijur for a few days you should take a look under there and see the evidence in oil on the suspension parts that has leaked out where it was Bijured. Look at every place, since a clogged Bijur fitting could cause a particular part to be starved for oil. Evidence of oil is what you should see.

Some unenlightened owners have taken the Bijur fittings off and replaced them with grease nipples. That is definitely the wrong thing to d for two reasons: (1) It destroys the originality of this aspect of your car, lowering its value. (2) The parts are designed to be oiled (brass against steel) which is not very suitable for grease that should use a steel against steel interface. Also, the steering pivots have roller bearings in them that won't work right with grease. If your Bijur has troubles, fix it or get it fixed by an experienced RR mechanic who understands the Bijur system.

Good luck getting your Cloud oiled.
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Bill Coburn
Posted on Sunday, 18 March, 2001 - 14:20:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

From the ageing pedant. Having suffered this fool of an arrangement on my Silver Dawn and an R Type I am much relieved that the S2 is not so fitted. The early days of Mk VI's in this country where they were used by farmers in the bulldust (extremely fine dust inches thick on the road) the late Bert Ward found a number of cases where the dust, mixing easily with the oil, literally worked as grinding paste and on two occasions whilst pulling himself up under a car actually pulled the tie rods clean off their joint! The brass seating for the ball pin had been ground clean through.

Notwithstanding, I would not replace the system with grease since although an embuggerance in my opinion it is still part of the 'charm' of the car.

As to comparing grease and oil lubrication I have heard many wise words on why the change over should not occur and don't believe any of them. Bill, you mention the roller bearings in the pivot pins. They are the same in the Cloud II and III which happily run on grease! The Cloud I with the oil system however has a metering pin stuck in it which is supposed to drag oil up to the top bearing of the stub axle by capillary attraction. Given the price of these parts I would not worry about mess.

Step I is to pump as much oil through the sytem as your leg will allow without precipitating RSI. Lay plenty of newspaper on the floor and let the thing sit for a while then have a look at the spots! Low supply spells dollars, replace the metering valves, check for kinked pipes or straight out punctures.

Personally I have always used OEP 90 in the system as it clings better leaks less and seems to be more resistant to water etc. Forget the 100 miles bit. Pump as often as you like but not less than once per hundred.
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Martin Cutler
Posted on Sunday, 18 March, 2001 - 14:21:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

"Character" is what we classify it as! English motor cars have lots of "character" when it comes to oil and mechanical matters. Italian motorcycles has heaps of "character" when it comes to electrics (and you thought Lucas "Prince of Darkness" was bad news!)

If you didn't like character, you would be driving a Hyundai!
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Bill Coburn
Posted on Sunday, 18 March, 2001 - 14:22:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Very true Martin. Reminds me of a report on a young officer "His men follow him out of sheer curiosity as to what he may do next!" One of the more interesting parts of the mantra we all chant is when a fail to proceed situation occurs and the guru gazes at the destruction and says "I've never seen that before"; but we still keep at it. They have got to develop a pill for the condition soon!
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Bill Vatter
Posted on Sunday, 18 March, 2001 - 14:23:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

You guys!

When these cars were built they were the best you could get. Now you say that since modern developments have made 1950s technology obsolete, embracing history suggests mental deficiency. I know that 1950s technology is obsolete. I also know that the old stuff will work fine if it is maintained properly. I personally think the Lucas parts on my car are with few exceptions pretty good parts.

This hobby is about history. Therefore, old is good even when it isn't.
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bruce m burnham (
Posted on Saturday, 15 June, 2002 - 04:56:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP


on the Silver Cloud 1 there is the bijur system, but there are also grease fittings on the outer steering and tie rod ends. the fittings are a shallow flat fitting that look like a nut, with a central opening or tiny ball, similar to the common grease zirc fitting on more modern cars. the grease gun adaptor is available at some auto parts stores, I will find the name or number of the grease gun adaptor and email it in the next week. definitely do not remove the bijur system....
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Bill Coburn (
Posted on Sunday, 16 June, 2002 - 12:01:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP


Bruce's remarks sent me scurrying to the workshop manual, a copy of which you no doubt have. In chapter 'D' is explained the four stages of evolution the chassis lubrication system experienced. Initially up to the 'F' series chassis full one shot oiling was employed using I note SAE or EP90 oil!

Then the button grease nipples Bruce refers to were fitted to the track-rod ends later all the steering joints used grease through button nipples. The suspension changed to grease with the S2/Cloud II.

For owners of the latter cars be very sure that grease is getting to the ends of the lower suspension pins.

Some time ago I pulled the whole front suspension out of the S2 mainly to clean it but also to renew the rubber dust seals that had to be perished after 40 odd years. In fact most of them weren’t. Having removed the coil springs, always a task to raise the blood pressure and tension levels, I loosened the very large threaded bushes that screw into the lower control arms; no small task given that they are tightened to 250 foot pounds tension. When I came to loosen the lower, outer rear bush, the whole assembly came away in my hand. The thread on the main suspension pins had almost completely worn away obviously through lack of lubricant.

I had for the past 15 years pumped grease more or less blindly into the appropriate nipple but it had obviously gone everywhere but where it should be. An expensive result I can confirm.

Later greasing a Cloud III I paid very careful attention to what and how much oozed out of the various joints as I pumped. I noticed the apparent lack of ooze from the lower outer joints. Removal of the grease nipple showed no fresh grease inside so a blockage was right there. But a new nipple produced no better result. The problem turned out to be a plug of grease that had gone quite hard with age. This was cleared and grease flowed as it was intended. Hopefully little damage has been done.

Assuming you do your own greasing, the procedure I followed to clear ‘the plug’ was as follows. I removed the tie rod from the steering arm, which allowed a socket, and breakbar to be put on the rear screwed bush. It was very tight as expected put with the aid of a length of water pipe it came unscrewed. This was screwed out about ¼ of an inch. The same procedure was followed with the front bush, which was easily accessible. These bushes screw simultaneously into the control arms (wishbones?) and onto the suspension lower bearing pin pressed into the yoke connecting the upper control arms with the lower ones.

The grease nipple on the underside of the yoke feeds through a drilling in this pin into its centre, which has quite a large hole right through it. The grease oozes out of the ends of the pins and forces its way past the threads of the bush screwed onto it and emerges into daylight where the bush ends. There is only a small clearance between the end of the pivot pin and the inside end of the bush and it is here that I suspect the dried plug had formed preventing grease getting through to the threads in the bush. By screwing the bushes out say ¼ inch the plug could be pushed out and the newly available space filled with grease. Hopefully oozing out at the end of the bush. Screwing the bush back into the control arm and onto the suspension pin also forces the reservoir of grease out through the threads.

Notes for the unwary

There would be few owners that would have the size sockets, tension wrench etc needed for this task but I will list them below. If there is the slightest doubt that the grease is getting through liaise with your friendly garage man who will have a hoist and he can follow the above procedure.

Tools needed
Tie rod end splitter
1¼” AF socket
6” ¾” drive socket extension
Tension wrench of at least 250 ft lbs capacity
Grease gun
Button Nipple adapter
II/I6” set spanner
Side cutters to remove the split pins
Split pins

Data Tighten both screwed bushes to 250ft lbs

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