Well surprise surprise it showed up today. Estimated delivery was 17-19th so two days early isn't bad. I went ahead and took apart, cleaned and lubed my Caribbean and unmodded Sliverax (meaning nothing inside it has been polished, however the Caribbean is mirror polished on the tang/detent path).
First impressions are actually quite good, easily better than any other liquid type lube I've used, though I still plan on doing a blind comparison vs motor oil.
On my Caribbean, I tried to adjust the pivot as close to how it felt with the grease as I could, meaning no perceivable side play even with a firm wiggling, while keeping the blade so that it will drop closed but only with a little wrist jiggle. The action is at least as smooth and perhaps a little quicker (grease tends to slow things down, even lighter weight grease). Beyond that there's not much difference vs the grease, in fact I'd say if someone did this to my knife without my knowing I wouldn't suspect a thing.
The Sliverax is a bit more interesting. I can dial in the pivot so there's no blade play at all and the blade swings like a pendulum completely free of any friction (no change vs grease and a reminder of why I love this bearing pivot) but I can feel the bearings rolling in the pivot, while the grease seemed to either smooth out those grooves better or dull the vibration felt through the handle, giving the perception that the pivot action is smoother. It's an interesting difference, as there definitely isn't any obvious difference in friction, but the feeling of the bearings does seem different to me. It may also be of note that this particular Sliverax is the newest CQI and has the smoothest bearing race of all 3 that I have.
On both knives I used a bamboo chopstick wedged into the handle to press the lock bar open so there's no chance the detent ball either slowed down the action or created any vibration feelings moving over the finish of the tang (not an issue regardless on the Caribbean since it's mirror polished anyway). I also lubed the detent balls anyway.
I feel like on the Caribbean in particular the action feels much the same as it did with grease, which is kind of a big deal as I haven't had the same success with any other liquid lube as I have with grease (being able to adjust out all the blade play without ruining the action). Nano-Oil is without a doubt better (less friction) than Tuf-Glide or Tri-Flow which are the two lubes I most recently played around with and compared to Phil Wood grease which were fairly poor compared to the grease.
Tomorrow I'll clean out both pivots and get some Mobil 1 out of the garage and see what we can find. Does anyone know if this stuff is difficult to clean off? Has it "bonded with the metal" or some other witchcraft? That might give some false comparisons if I don't completely clean the stuff off.
SHARPEN IT LIKE YOU LOVE IT, USE IT LIKE YOU HATE IT