Have you ever heard of Phil's Tenacious Oil, sold in bike shops? It's a viscous oil used by some mechanics for chains subjected to lots of wet conditions or to minimal maintenance (i.e. kids bikes). Before putting grease on my current discs, I tried the hub assembly with this Tenacious Oil. It also produced resistance that I wasn't expecting. In any case, before the weekend I'm going to pick up a bottle of Master Pro Gear Oil you recommend. Thanks for all the info!
I‘ve never used Phil’s Tenacious Oil but all the Phil Wood products are quality lubricants. I’d imagine it’s a lot like hypoid gear oil.
After reading that you tried just tenacious oil in the hub with no grease and it still produced resistance, I’m worried there may be something else going on. There will always be some drag since it’s a system that relies on friction to work and that friction can’t be completely eliminated, even while coasting but it shouldn’t be tons. Without spinning the wheel myself, it’s hard to tell if what you are experiencing is a normal amount of friction or not.
When I lift my rear tire and gently spin the wheel, it spins smoothly, but only for a single rotation or maybe two. It does not feel rough or sticky, but it doesn’t spin for hours like a super low friction bearing set, or even as long as my 1941 front WL hub.
I didn't explain well. I used bicycle grease on bearings, races, cones etc, and only used the Tenacious Oil on the rings. I understand about some drag always being present, but with the current ND hub (using either Tenacious Oil or grease on the discs, and with noticeable play in the adjustment), I can't even hold the axle in my fingers and spin the wheel. I might be able to hold for a second or two, but the axle always winds up spinning in my fingers. Pretty strong resistance. The bearings/races are in good condition, installed properly and well greased. As mentioned, the discs are a NOS set from New Departure. Let's see what happens with the Gear Oil.