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Hill Pump Service Intervals?

In a Previous post I warned about not using the Mk 5 without the air drier. I thought I could save a few bucks and go the 'pump only' route. There are some strong opinions out there weather this pump is worth the money and if the dryer is effective stopping condensation. That being said I'm ordering the drier part today in the hopes that it stops some.  I used the pump quite a bit (3 or 4 tins of pellets at least) only having lubricated the outer tube one time early on and began to notice gritty feeling and a brown substance (rusty wet vapor) around the pressure bleed. Come to find out the outer tube was rusting. I've been happy with the performance of the pump so far but obviously not with the rust. My questions to those that own one:

How often do you lubricate?

What lubricants do you use?

How far down disassembly wise do you take it each time?

Is just greasing the outer tube as it calls for in the manual enough to stop the rust?

I was going to use Pellgun for the internals and the Hill grease for the outer tube since I have it on hand. I pride myself in maintaining my equipment and do not want to have this problem again.
Mine is a MK3 but this might be interesting/helpful to you. 


I didn't mention in that post that one thing I did with the Hill (back when it was getting used often) was only fill indoors in the air conditioning when and if it was humid outside. I also live in AZ so my average humidity is pretty low which is another reason I think mine has lasted so long. 

I read through that post again and think I need to add that the pump goop I mention is usually grey in color. The Crosman pump I had before would make red goop (rust). Part of the negative ( a learning one too) experience I had with the Crosman was likely due to me not opening it up often enough. 

Finally, my MK3 does have the little moisture collector but I was really bad about replacing the molecular sieve/beads in it. For a while I kept a plastic baggy rubber banded over the intake on the dryer when the pump was not being used, argument being that that would keep the beads from being exposed and absorbing humidity when the pump was just sitting there not being used. Personally, I think establishing a maintenance routine is more help than the dryer. 
Ones more thought....

Rust has a tendency to "seed" more rust. If you've got spots of rust in the internals anywhere I'd recommend steel wool to get down to metal again. If it's pitted rust the pump might be done for, but if it's just surface you should be able to remove it with steel wool so it doesn't cause more. Carefully clean up/remove all of the little particles created by the steel wool before you light coat all the internals with silicone grease and reassemble. 
I know I am repeating myself :) :) ...but

Of the 8 Hills I owned, .......all with dry beads unit, all developed what you call that gritty outer main tube turning shortly into severe pitting, all where showing that rust colored sludge and lost of rust internally, all had to be re-built within a year most often 6 months and back then kits where 38 bucks, don't know how much they are now because once I found the 50 bucks China pump I never looked back, let the Hills I had left die of a slow death and tossed them.



Feb 5, 2021
FL, United States
    if i use my pump to fill a small gun more than once, or after a days shooting session i break it 'all' the way down, dry, and apply 30w silicone oil by hand liberally on all parts .. takes about 10 mins after you learn how to do it and break the factory set fasteners loose, then dont retighten them that hard if your smart ... thats the service interval lol .. if you let them sit with moisture in them theyre going to corrode ... and imo OIL not grease, is much better because it flows and covers surfaces better .. grease tends to get wiped off areas by seals and then .. theyre not protected ..
    I get the point AirArcher66. There is one setting in the corner of my garage right now collecting dust. The Hill performs better. Dizzums, I can see the wisdom in the oil then. My local auto parts store was no help, where do you get the oil? Like you mentioned in another thread, its easy to break down once you know how :) Thanks Franklink for the Hill insights.