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Glenn Premium Member
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 11:55 am    Post subject: Official "What oil / additives should I use" topic Reply with quote

There's been too many topics on the same oil subject.
This will be a ongoing topic to discuss what oil works.
Any similar topics in other forums will be pointed to this one and then locked.

Let's keep to the facts and not get into any heated debates.

Basically "clean" oil is best with frequent changes. Organic vs synthetic, single grade vs multi grade, diesel vs gasoline, does it really matter?

Any BS will be deleted, so stay on topic.

Let the debate begin.

===============================================
Summary
(for those that don't want to read the entire thread):
Quote:
"The most important thing is to change your oil, no matter what the type or grade. Apart from that, the overall consensus is to use 10/30 Oil for most climates worldwide and a lot of people in this thread recommend Brad Penn oil or your favorite oil plus a ZDDP additive."

ZDDP levels should be between 1200 - 1500 ppm, more is not better.

When in doubt, experts recommend having 10 psi per 1000 rpms. For example, if you are running at 3000 rpms on the freeway, you should have around 30 psi when at full operating temperature.


Also see
Importance of choosing the correct oil weight


Last edited by Glenn on Fri Aug 08, 2014 6:53 pm; edited 6 times in total
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CarreraRS2.7
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know it's been posted before, but it's still a good article and should go in this section:

From Aircooled.Net technical articles
Quote:
Synthetic Oil Explained

Whether it's evil stuff or good stuff depends on who you talk to. And a lot of what you hear from backyard mechanics is rumor and myth. Myth # 1 is the claim that you don't have to change Synthetic oil as often as regular motor oil. Remember when Mobil 1 said you could go 25,000 miles between oil changes with synthetic oil? Notice they haven't said that for a good number of years? Keep that thought on the back burner for now... Myth #2 is that synthetic oil causes oil leaks. In this article I'm going to try to dispell these myths for you with the cold hard facts about the differences and similarities between dino vs. synthetic oil.

Let's talk first about what "dino" oil is (Dino is short for Dinosaur, which is when it started forming). Dino oil is created from something called "Base Stock". Base stock what the oil companies get after they have processed the crude oil that comes from the ground. From there, additives are combined with the Base Stock, to create our motor oil. There are 7 main additives which include anti-foaming agents, anti-corrosion, etc, etc. At the molecular level, dino oil contains molecules of varying sizes. Imagine the floor of a gymnasium covered with basketballs, baseballs, volleyballs, and beach balls. Now imagine that all those different size "balls" are moving around, flowing past the floor. Every time a ball surface contacts the floor surface, the ball absorbs heat from the floor. That is how oil removes heat from your engine components, from surface to surface contact.

Now imagine the same gymnasium floor covered in uniformly sized golf balls. Smaller, more uniform molecules can absorb more heat from a surface, because there are more of them AND they have a larger surface to volume ratio which means they have more surface area contact. That's what synthetic oil is. A man-made "Base Stock", where all the molecules are the same size, and smaller than those in dino oil. Better heat transfer, better lubricating properties, and a lot wider temperature range without breakdown, are now obtained.

Myth #1 debunked

Oil does not break down under normal use. This is true of both dino and synth oil and is also the reason why you take oil to the Recycling Center and not the trash dump. So if oil itself doesn't ever degrade, why do we have to change it? The answer is twofold: additives and contamination. It will probably surprise you to learn that synthetic oil has all the same additives that dino oil has! The additives in oil DO break down, which is part of what necessitates oil changes. The other reason for regular oil changes is that with use, motor oil becomes contaminated (dirt, water, acids, etc). Using synthetic oil does not protect against either of these problems, which is why you CANNOT go further between oil changes when running a synthetic. You should still change your synthetic oil at the same intervals as you do with dino oil. Anyone want to guess how many claims Mobil 1 had to pay to people that were going 25,000 miles between changes?

Myth #2 debunked

Synthetic oil causing oil leaks is another commonly spread myth. The truth of the matter is that if all your engine seals and gaskets are in good condition, synthetic oil will NOT leak in your engine. The myth started because on occasion, an engine will leak with synthetic oil, but not dino oil. The reason for this is that the smaller molecules of the synthetic are able to get past very small crevices, where the larger molecules of dino oil cannot. But this does not mean that the synthetic oil has caused the leak, it simply has "discovered" an infant leak, and regardless of what oil you are running, this infant leak will eventually grow to a size that will allow dino oil to occupy and pass also. Synthetic oil has not been shown to deteriorate engine seals or gaskets. It is not some evil solvent that will break down sealant, or anything like that. Like was said earlier, it is just a man-made base stock, that is uniform and smaller in molecule size than dino oil. Nothing more, nothing less.

ADVANTAGES OF RUNNING SYNTHETIC OIL in AIRCOOLED ENGINES
So if you are asking yourself "What's the point of running synthetic oil, if you can't change it less often?" Here's your answer in a nutshell.

Since synthetic oil has better heat transfer qualities than dino oil, your internal engine temperatures will be lower. Things like bearings, especially, will not operate at as high of a temperature as a result. The wider range of temperatures that synthetic oil can withstand is well suited for the air-cooled VW engine. With head temperatures normally between 300-350 degrees, synthetic will not breakdown while lubricating the valvetrain components at the heads. The better lubricating properties of synthetic in general will lead to a longer engine life as well. On average, when synthetic oil is run in an air-cooled VW engine, head temperatures stay the same, but engine oil temps reduce by anywhere from 10 to 15 degrees. This is in engines that have all the correct cooling tin in place, and are not suffering from overheating to begin with. Important note: Do not run synthetic to fix a hot running engine. Find the real reason it's running hot, and fix it!

Another benefit is that since synthetic oil is man-made, it can be tailored to suit a wider range of needs. Synthetic oil is now being made is such weights as 5w50, and 0w30, weights that are not possible to achieve with dino oils.

At Aircooled.Net we recommend that you run synthetic oils in all cases, with one exception: you should continue to run dino oil (and change it every 1k miles) if your car still has the stock oiling system.

In transmissions we can not praise synthetics enough; RUN IT, especially if you live somewhere that gets cold (under 30F/0C).

There is one thing I need to clarify though -- if you are not running an oil filter, there really is no point to using synthetic since your oil is going to become contaminated very quickly. Your engine will still benefit somewhat from it, but due to the higher cost of synthetic oil, the gain of running it before it becomes contaminated is negligible. Oil change intervals range from 1000-3000 miles in the VW engine with a strainer (not a filter). VWoM (Mexico) recommends 1k mile intervals on non-filtered engines; keep this in mind for your pride and joy! But on the flip side, the stock VW engine only takes 2.5 qts anyways, it's not going to break you if you do want to run synthetic!



Eric Allred, Aircooled.Net Guest Writer


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 3:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Glenn for starting the sticky.

The article from Eric Allred via Aircooled.net is an excellent post here (thanks CarreraRS2.7).

The article by Charles L Navarro at LN Engineering, home of the Nickies, is also informative and a good read. http://www.lnengineering.com/oil.html

Both give the ACVW crowd solid and interesting perspective and information that the can be used to make an intelligent choice of which oil run with.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is some additional information from the American Petroleum Institute (API). There the folks who set the standards for oil in the USofA. This is pretty basic but provides a good foundation to understanding what all the lingo is about... engine oil 101.

API sticker/quality marks
http://new.api.org/aboutoilgas/motoroil/api-quality-marks.cfm

API Engine Oil Service Categories
http://new.api.org/certifications/engineoil/categories/upload/EngineOilGuide2006.pdf
API Engine Oil Service Categories (in spanish)
http://new.api.org/certifications/engineoil/categories/upload/ShelfCard(Spanish).pdf
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2007 12:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm a newby to the performance VW scene, but not a newby to the performance engine scene.
Just a couple of things to throw out based upon my experiences with oil(s) in high-perf diesel applications and extreme performance V-8's.

1) If you are running methonal fuel in a HP situation, most synthetics will not be compatible. Methonal draws mositure, and the dino stuff will"vaporize" it off as the engine builds heat. Also, if your fuel system is a bit rich and you contaminate the oil with methonal, dino oil will be a bit forgiving and will vaporize it, too.
My experience with Mobil One and Royal Purple was that the synthetic base does not lend itself to seperating the methonal from the oil, so if you contaminate it with fuel the oil is instantly and permanently destroyed, no, "coooking off" either fuel or moisture will take place.

2) Nitrous Systems are extremely hard on oil. My experience with the brands of synthetic I mentioned above was that they are very stout stuff and either would be my choice if running Nitrous on a gasoline system. One hard 1/4 mile pull on the bottle will turn fresh dino based oil black, you get about 10 times that out of the synthetics.

3)Playing with chips, oversize turbos, modified injectors and other stuff on light truck diesel engines making 30-40PSI of manifold pressure led me to become a real fan of Oil analysis. If you really want to know what is going on with your oil, and how your moving parts and friction producing surfaces are doing, and how your fuel system is functioning, get ahold of a lab, like Blackstone for instance, and follow their process for sending a sample of your oil for analysis.
It can be a real education.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2007 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rotella 15/40. That is the only oil i run. In my beetles and buses, Chevy v-8"s, Everything. All year long.I have 120,000 miles on my GM 250 six-cylinder i rebuilt with NO Engine work at all.Texaco URSA is comparable.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2007 8:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

for me it will be rotella every 2000 miles with a filter.

hmmm, rotella is made in a 30W and a 15W/40. so with all the recent talk around here about the importance of zinc to the cam, will it be possible to any longer defend the 20W/50 choice? or will talk about zinc additives begin soon?
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2007 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dansvans wrote:
for me it will be rotella every 2000 miles with a filter.

hmmm, rotella is made in a 30W and a 15W/40. so with all the recent talk around here about the importance of zinc to the cam, will it be possible to any longer defend the 20W/50 choice? or will talk about zinc additives begin soon?


Rotella is also made in 10W30 and 5W40 form. Lots of choices for this stuff.

For those of you that want to really geek out about oil contents, check out the Used and Virgin Oil Analysis subforums of the Bob Is The Oil Guy site. There you will find endless debate on oil additives, history, and evidence on how well the various brands of oil are doing in people's engines.

For a forum "just" about oil, they have 16,000 members! Shocked
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2007 7:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Rotella is also made in 10W30 and 5W40 form. Lots of choices for this stuff.


yes but i dont think they make a 20W-50
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2007 7:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My understanding was that the 15W-40 had the highest zinc content compared to the other grades.

I also add a 1/2 bottle of GM EOS (Engine Oil Supplement) with each oil change.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2007 7:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used Mobil 1 15/50 in my 1800 stroker. At 63,000 miles I pulled the heads due to 2 head studs pulling. The pistons and liners looked as new. I re rang it and off I went. I always noticed what I would call MISTING when using the Mobil 1, but I also drive it at 3600 to 3800 rpm's. As soon as I drive the oil would start looking DIRTY, this would be in 100 miles or so. I would change the oil every 5000 miles and the filter every 2500 miles and then add oil as needed. So far so good.
At 70,000 miles I switched to Castrol SYNTEC in the same engine 15/40,
I found that my misting all but went away and the oil appeared to stay cleaner looking longer and oil consumption went down. This seat of the pants testing proved that SYN oils work and that Castrol is a better product (for me) then Mobil 1.
I use SYN oils in all my personal engines and recomend the same to who ever I build an engine 4.
I will find the site where a V8 guy did Mobil one testing and had it labbed every 1000 miles. I believe he went over 80,000 miles on the same oil with only adding oil every filter change. He would lab the oil before and after the filter change and found the oil with 1 quart added would bring it almost back to original specs. This was done by an individual with-out backing by any oil company.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2007 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe the Mobil-1 was keeping the rings from breaking in?
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2007 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The mobile was thinner than the castrol. Despite even being the same advertised weight.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2007 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a good primer on how oil is refined/made, what goes into the additive packages, viscosity breakdown, and what is best suited for air-cooled motorcycles (arguably tougher on oil than our ACVWs):

All About Motor Oil
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2007 4:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote,"Myth #1 debunked

Oil does not break down under normal use. This is true of both dino and synth oil and is also the reason why you take oil to the Recycling Center and not the trash dump. So if oil itself doesn't ever degrade, why do we have to change it? The answer is twofold: additives and contamination. It will probably surprise you to learn that synthetic oil has all the same additives that dino oil has! The additives in oil DO break down, which is part of what necessitates oil changes. The other reason for regular oil changes is that with use, motor oil becomes contaminated (dirt, water, acids, etc). Using synthetic oil does not protect against either of these problems, which is why you CANNOT go further between oil changes when running a synthetic. You should still change your synthetic oil at the same intervals as you do with dino oil. Anyone want to guess how many claims Mobil 1 had to pay to people that were going 25,000 miles between changes? end quote".


Not true. Synthetics were designed partly with extended oil change intervals in mind. Check out out LN engineerings site as well as Jake Rabys and others and you will see the results.

Also as everyone knows 'oil' comes from the earth, in worse shape prior to being run in an engine. So why not pour it back in the earth? It has nothing to do with the water table either...remember there is oil in the ground now as we speak as is water.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2007 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just did a huge update to my oil page, now have 119 voa results posted.

http://www.LNengineering.com/oil.html

Charles Navarro
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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 12:34 pm    Post subject: Oil Reply with quote

Read the new version of Charles Navarro's article and I have a question; does the newer 15W-40 Shell Rotella (complying with CJ-4 as opposed to the earlier CI-4) still have the recommended amounts of Zinc and Phosporus?
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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 2:01 pm    Post subject: Re: Oil Reply with quote

Vayabroder wrote:
Read the new version of Charles Navarro's article and I have a question; does the newer 15W-40 Shell Rotella (complying with CJ-4 as opposed to the earlier CI-4) still have the recommended amounts of Zinc and Phosporus?


The answer to your question is no.
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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 3:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

so what would be the best to run in a fresh street strip motor and i live in the vally of calif
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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 4:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Oil Reply with quote

Vayabroder wrote:
Read the new version of Charles Navarro's article and I have a question; does the newer 15W-40 Shell Rotella (complying with CJ-4 as opposed to the earlier CI-4) still have the recommended amounts of Zinc and Phosporus?


btw, are they going to discontinue the CI-4 version?
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