Lubrication for open geared Metal Lathes

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I live in Southeastern La. We have a lot of temperature changes here with high humidity and I was constantly fighting surface rust on my lathe and milling machine. Now I run a medium sized shop fan 24-7 pointed at my machines and have been doing so for a number of years, and the rusting is no longer occurring.
I live right on the ocean and in winter I run a fan from 10pm to 8am on a timer and it stops the condensation forming on anything metal in my shed. Without it everything looked like it has sweated water.
That was what I found out in the shop, the lathe was dripping in condensate. I just happened to go out and use it early on a weekend. I figured out it had dropped below dew point at night. It was a head scratcher finding it dry but rusted.
Worse is it shows that oiled surfaces.....aren't.

The fan keeps the machinery at ambient air temperature, which generally is above dew point. It also puts kinetic energy into the air, helping keep water molecules from condensing on condensation nuclei. The light bulb did the same thing, but I always felt it a fire hazard. My friend used a light bulb in the bottom drawer of a tool cabinet, this worked very well at keeping chrome plated tools from rusting. Another frustration where the chrome plate is compromised by use of the tool.