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Engine & Transmission oils & their chemistry’s


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On 5/1/2020 at 3:48 AM, Last Indian said:

So how do we, the guy in the backyard, figure this all out as best we can without a lab at our disposal?! 

that is my exact question Last indian! 🙄

when it comes to all the factors involved, as much as it is about the mix of additives etc in the raw oil, i would have to consider the engine its going into !

i have my old school engines, 313 poly, 389 pontiac, 400 and 350 chev, 360 magnum,  that would ,most likely take one certain oil, but i also have brand new engines ( like my supercharged hemi) that need very specific oil, or is this just a myth ?

And what about cars like mine that sit for months without being started or used? how does that impact on the oil? do i need to change it more often because its been sitting? 

Like my camaro is lucky to see 100 miles a year, some years none!, do i use a oil that is good for engines that get little use ???🙄

and here is a question for you, without giving away brand names... what tbn, zddp, tan numbers should i look for in a oil for say my 398 in the 64 ?:rolleyes:

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11 hours ago, 64 kiwi boni said:

 

 

that is my exact question Last indian! 🙄

when it comes to all the factors involved, as much as it is about the mix of additives etc in the raw oil, i would have to consider the engine its going into !

i have my old school engines, 313 poly, 389 pontiac, 400 and 350 chev, 360 magnum,  that would ,most likely take one certain oil, but i also have brand new engines ( like my supercharged hemi) that need very specific oil, or is this just a myth ?

And what about cars like mine that sit for months without being started or used? how does that impact on the oil? do i need to change it more often because its been sitting? 

Like my camaro is lucky to see 100 miles a year, some years none!, do i use a oil that is good for engines that get little use ???🙄

and here is a question for you, without giving away brand names... what tbn, zddp, tan numbers should i look for in a oil for say my 398 in the 64 ?:rolleyes:

All good questions Kiwi! You are correct that different engines have different needs! So no it’s no myth! From both a base stock oil as well as additives. Still you can narrow the field of oils you need to a degree partly because oils, like lots of things tend to be backward compatible. Such as a GF6 oil is compatible for an engine that took a GF4 oil, but certain differences might rule out a particular oil, such as the unavailability of a viscosity grade! 
Specifically you would need to look for a relative viscosity grade for an engine within a range. Example, if you have a motor that needs and uses a 20W50 Oil because of bearing tolerances, in turn it also runs no catalytic, plus you run it hard or race it! Than your not going to look for a Dexos oil because of their viscosity grades! You are additionally going to want a good anti-wear additive like ZDDP. You’ll want the range to fall somewhere between mid 700ppm which is a little low & 1200ppm, which is on the high side. This is all a lot of work so instead this is why I said you look for a fully formulated diesel oil like Chevron’s Delo 400 or Shell’s Rotella T4. Both have ample amounts of additives, including ZDDP.
Oil sitting in an engine for an extended period of time is ok! Unless the oil is nearing oil change time, than I would always change it before putting it up! Also I would change it if you have fuel dilution or a coolant leak! Even when these two items aren’t bad enough to be a detriment when driving regularly, they create oxidation and acid, so when left sitting for extended periods they tend to etch metal, which is corrosion. 
Good numbers! TBN, well back in the day you use to be able to get a 13 or 14 TBN oil, today good luck! The highest I’ve seen is Delo Multigrade or  Rotella T4 @ 10.1! Need I say more! That said in my opinion the Delo has to much zinc, @ 1500 & sulfated ash @ 14000! Where the Rotella has 1200ppm of zinc and 10000 sulfated ash, much more reasonable. TAN, that is a measurement taken as the oil is degrading and basically can only be made by drawing a sample and sending it to a lab for analysis, but! Good news! That is to be the next segment I start! How to analyze our oil at home by color! 
 

Edited by Last Indian
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Well it looks like i have been using the wrong oil!!

i was recommended amtex power 50...

https://oilintel.co.nz/product/amtex-power-50/

and i have been using it in both my stock 350 in the camaro and the hp 400 in the green ute also have been using it in the 59 plymouth with its 313 poly engine.

clearly my zddp levels are way too high

 I see we dont get Rotella t4 here but is the rimula the same oil ?

Edited by 64 kiwi boni
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so, what happens if you use oil with a high zddp ?🙄

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17 hours ago, 64 kiwi boni said:

so, what happens if you use oil with a high zddp ?🙄

Specifically if you regularly run levels of ZDDP over 1500ppm and you just drive regular, no racing and not hot rodding all the time when driving you run the risk of the following depending on oil consumption rates! 
ZDDP work by heat & pressure, but mainly heat! To explain it in layman terms! Because it’s a boundary layer chemistry it only gets activated when there is enough of each. If there isn’t enough it stays dormant in the bulk oil. When there is enough it builds a film. That film is self limiting, meaning when and if the layer builds thick enough it stops. When that film wears down enough it starts to make it again! So in racing, lots of friction, or hot rodding, the film builds up and shrinks continuously, which in turn depletes the ZDDP additive. When you drive more docile nothing much happens to the ZDDP! If you have enough blow-by or valve train leakage that allows oil to enter the combustion chamber; the results are excessive carbon deposits! Substantial more than without ZDDP, because the main byproduct of ZDDP is carbon!
So if you look at what I’ve been saying, and I might not have been saying it well enough! If you are racing or hot rodding, 1200ppm to a max 1500ppm! If you are driving street driving, more docile, getting on it hear and there, 830ppm to 1000ppm is more than enough. If you run a catalytic converter, 700ppm to 900ppm is enough. But the amount of oil that is consumed in the combustion process because of engine condition may change that!
 

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17 hours ago, Last Indian said:

Specifically if you regularly run levels of ZDDP over 1500ppm and you just drive regular, no racing and not hot rodding all the time when driving you run the risk of the following depending on oil consumption rates! 
ZDDP work by heat & pressure, but mainly heat! To explain it in layman terms! Because it’s a boundary layer chemistry it only gets activated when there is enough of each. If there isn’t enough it stays dormant in the bulk oil. When there is enough it builds a film. That film is self limiting, meaning when and if the layer builds thick enough it stops. When that film wears down enough it starts to make it again! So in racing, lots of friction, or hot rodding, the film builds up and shrinks continuously, which in turn depletes the ZDDP additive. When you drive more docile nothing much happens to the ZDDP! If you have enough blow-by or valve train leakage that allows oil to enter the combustion chamber; the results are excessive carbon deposits! Substantial more than without ZDDP, because the main byproduct of ZDDP is carbon!
So if you look at what I’ve been saying, and I might not have been saying it well enough! If you are racing or hot rodding, 1200ppm to a max 1500ppm! If you are driving street driving, more docile, getting on it hear and there, 830ppm to 1000ppm is more than enough. If you run a catalytic converter, 700ppm to 900ppm is enough. But the amount of oil that is consumed in the combustion process because of engine condition may change that!
 

Oh well that ok then!!  i dont drag race them but i certainly dont sunday drive them either !! 😄

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13 hours ago, Last Indian said:

Well! This is going to take some explaining to say the least & I have no doubt there will be skeptics! But,
this is something I’ve done since I was 14 years old! Yes I was young I know hard to believe! But I started working on cars @ 11 & racing @ 14. None the less I had done it so long it was just second nature to me. As I got more and more involved with specialty projects at work that centered around oil quality folks that I worked with were amazed at how accurate I would be about oil conditions when we would get test results back from samples we had taken and I had commented on at the time of extraction. I have always just used a white absorbent paper towel to wipe the oil on and then read the color. This is how I could judge the condition of the oil. In 1998 two colleagues that I had worked with for several years took some interest as to how I did this, so I tried to show them, but no matter how I tried they could not see what I would see! That led me to start working with black light to try to enhance the iridescent quality of the changing components of the oil. This helped some, but there were just to many irons in the fire at that time we all moved on to different projects. Than mid 2003 I approached our Vice President of research about the idea & if there was some way to take chemistry that would enhance a sample of oil when it was wiped on to a treated paper. So in early 2004 a patent was applied for to do just that. Now I’m not a chemist, I had learned much in 35 years, but not how to do that! So through some of my guidance we had arrived at a solution. It wasn’t perfect in my opinion, but I didn’t have the last word. If you what you can see that patent, just google US7754488 patent.

Since then I have found some other ways that seem to enhance color observations better that just wiping oil on a white absorbent paper, which is what I typically have always done, no chemistry on the paper So now I will try explain & show as we go forward. Some of this I will need to figure out how or where I will get samples. As of right now I have oil samples I will show, but they’re all from health engines! Meaning the oil is just aged from use. These samples run from the indian (2000 Grand Prix) @ 500 mile, 2013 Buick @ 2800 & 2012 Buick @ 3300, which is just about due for an oil change! 
So these are a good starting point, but you can also see, when present, fuel dilution, too much blow-by, coolant leaks, emulsion, excessive carbon & abnormal wear!

 

the picture below! Left drop of oil is brand new Oil from my supply. The drop on the right is from the Indian, it has 500 miles on it. It’s a perfect color for the mileage.

9E6DC739-D7DC-4B7F-BFE3-EC6AA7490728.jpeg

this picture below is the Same as above with the addition of the bottom left drop being from 2013 Buick 3.6 direct injection. This oil has 2800 miles on it. If you look close you’ll see the red hue of the oil! You’ll also notice that it has the appearance of a darker center that seem to be speckled ever so slightly! The red hue is oxidation of the oil. The red hue is a good indicator of the oxidation level.

19EE27CC-B692-4B81-BCB8-723EEBF49C70.jpeg

this picture below is again the same as above with the addition of the right lower drop of oil. This drop is from a 2012 Buick 3.6 direct injection. This oil has 3300 miles on it and needs changed soon! Notice the chocolate red color with no outer fringe of red, but if you look close again is an appearance of speckling. This indicates that carbon, varnish and heavy oxidation have taken place and the only thing that will now come from this oil is going to be more negative than the protection the oil can offer! Metal surfaces will start to varnish up & carbon will start to buildup!

E5D7EB59-02C9-451C-B7EF-B5344F076EC2.jpeg

Now thats one super intense read that Patent is Last india !!!!:stars:

but i cant completely understand your oil colour diagnosis :cheers:

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4 hours ago, 64 kiwi boni said:

Now thats one super intense read that Patent is Last india !!!!:stars:

but i cant completely understand your oil colour diagnosis :cheers:

Can you explain what you would like me to explain to try and make things more clear? I understand there might easily be a learning curve!

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Light color = NEW oil

Gets darker over the life of the oil.

Coffee color=  Change it......

BUT.......  I have bought mainly used cars over the years.  Have changed the dark oil w/specks  only to have the new oil get dark within  with in a week or two.  You can bet there is burnt sludge in the valve covers and whatever migrated to the oil pan and maybe even pluggin your pickup screen. Have tried changing the oil w/detergent oils.  Standard gas stations pushed that years ago when I worked there as a kid.  Would change once a month with no cleanout or extended time before getting dark again.  Valve covers are nothin to pop off and carefully clean out the sludge.  Alot of cars you can't pull the oil pan without lifting or pulling the motor. An old mechanic (@ the Standard station) would run a quart of fuel oil and let run down and sit in the pan.  Then run a cheap quart of oil through to clean out without starting.   After a couple weeks, change the oil again.  I was always shocked to see what the fuel oil cleaned out, but at the same time I was always wondering what was left floating around the pan.  He never had anything come back to the shop with related problems.   My point being, the oil can be brand new and still get dark in no time in older used engines that did not get the care most of us give our rides.  The visual test can't be 100% for all engines,  but I have always used your visual and smell test as a gauge.

 

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19 minutes ago, JUSTA6 said:

smell test

Ok, I'm curious. Can you explain more what smells you are looking for and what they mean?

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10 hours ago, 64 kiwi boni said:

Now thats one super intense read that Patent is Last india !!!!:stars:

but i cant completely understand your oil colour diagnosis :cheers:

sorry Last indian, it was my fault spelling error!! i ment... " but i CAN completely understand your oil colour diagnosis"😜

 i completely agree with Justa about oil in cars you bought being black and within weeks your new oil going the same colour.

 i have a van that has had oil changes under warranty for its first 100000 kms by the the dealership, and i can see build up of black muck at the oil cap, it was being changed every 10000kms as per warranty.

 now that is out of warranty i do the oil changes myself to save me $400 each time !!😡and every change,that oil is just dark brown black very dissapointing for a engine thats now only at 130000kms 

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4 hours ago, 64 kiwi boni said:

sorry Last indian, it was my fault spelling error!! i ment... " but i CAN completely understand your oil colour diagnosis"😜

 i completely agree with Justa about oil in cars you bought being black and within weeks your new oil going the same colour.

 i have a van that has had oil changes under warranty for its first 100000 kms by the the dealership, and i can see build up of black muck at the oil cap, it was being changed every 10000kms as per warranty.

 now that is out of warranty i do the oil changes myself to save me $400 each time !!😡and every change,that oil is just dark brown black very dissapointing for a engine thats now only at 130000kms 

Yup! That’s what happens & there’s no way to do it right except pull it tear it apart & rebuild it 🤭. Or leave it and just keep changing the oil every 500 miles till it stops! And I’ve never done that to a really dirty sludge up motor so I can’t say it would stop! 😳! New oil, because of the high TBN + new detergents etc. will clean varnish & sludge from that type of motor very quickly, but only till the contamination level overwhelms/depletes the TBN & additives. Which happens very quickly! So you need to remove that oil or it will simply rebuild what it removed. When we run an oil test in an engine, a clean engine, then we run a new test in that engine we do at least 2 full flushes. Depending on the oil the test and the engine it can be three and the flush times can be anywhere from an hour to 150 miles!

Edited by Last Indian
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ok, so without being a scientist whats the best way to manage your engines oil ? by colour? mileage? smell, or all the above. ?🙄

and if you have a dirty engine whats the best way to clean it up without pulling it apart?

i do like your recommendation on engines that sit for long periods having clean oil which reduces  corrosion issues , but having said that whats the best thing to do for a engine that sits and you want to preserve it over a long period, do you start it and run it for 30 mins, or does it need to be taken for a run to load it up ?

How important is oil filter brand choice ???  :cheers:

 sorry last Indian for all the questions, but i do enjoy learning from people who have " been there done that" :bowdown:

 

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14 hours ago, 64 kiwi boni said:

$400 each time !!

🤯 That's around $240 USD. Wow... (and I thought my oil changes were expensive at around $50 USD for the 5 quarts of oil & filter).

 

1 hour ago, 64 kiwi boni said:

but i do enjoy learning from people who have " been there done that"

Ditto.

Edited by Stewy
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8 hours ago, Stewy said:

🤯 That's around $240 USD. Wow... (and I thought my oil changes were expensive at around $50 USD for the 5 quarts of oil & filter).

 

Ditto.

yes Stewy, i think this is why when you buy a new van the price is cheap, as they get you with the service work !! i had no choice but to let them service it while it was under warranty and thats been 10 services over 4 years at $500 ish for each one = and extra 5 k on the price 🙄

 oh the kick in the guts was the 100k service that one was $780 😡😡

 and that was their last one !!  :o they wont see me back there again:cheers:

 

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so, last indian, what should we be looking for in our oil and how do we spot dogdie oil products?🙄

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in the rockauto news letter today.......

 

 

Diesel Oil, Flat Tappets & Gas Engines

"Zinc" or "Phosphorus" on an oil bottle label usually is referring to the additive zinc dialkyl dithiophosphate (ZDDP). ZDDP helps prevent wear, especially where the camshaft contacts the lifter in flat tappet lifter engines. Newer engines (since the late 1980s) have roller valve lifters and therefore do not benefit as much from ZDDP.

The anti-wear benefits of ZDDP were recognized in the 1950s. The oil of the 1950s had only about 300 parts per million (ppm) ZDDP. The concentration of ZDDP in motor oil gradually increased until it reached a maximum of 1200 to 1400 ppm in the 1980s. (More than 1400 ppm of ZDDP in oil actually starts to increase engine wear.)

Unfortunately, it was discovered that ZDDP makes catalytic converters for gasoline engines less effective by gradually coating the catalyst material with phosphate. To satisfy the latest API Service "SN" oil standard, oil manufacturers only put 600 to 800 ppm ZDDP in their oil.


Valvoline VR1 Racing Oil

For over a decade, car enthusiasts with flat tappet lifter engines have been debating whether the 600-800 ppm ZDDP in new "SN" oil is enough protection. Oil experts say that it is enough wear protection once the engine is broken in.

The flat tappet lifter equipped engines in my family fleet were all broken in around a half century ago. I still like to dote on my old cars by giving them a little extra ZDDP as long as it does not require too much hassle or extra money. Valvoline VR1 Racing Oil has been one convenient option. It does not qualify for the "SN" rating because it has too much ZDDP and it is "not recommended for extended use in vehicles with catalytic converters."

Another new, less expensive possibility may be the 10W-30 oil made for some of the most modern diesel engines. Some old car enthusiasts have long recommended oil for diesel engines because it frequently contained more ZDDP. Unfortunately, diesel oil was typically only available in a heavy weight such as 15W-40.


Motorcraft's 10W-30 Oil for Diesels

The label on Motorcraft's 10W-30 oil for diesels says it "contains more than 1000 ppm phosphorus for better wear protection." That is 200 to 400 more ppm at little or no additional cost compared to "SN" 10W-30 oils. The Motorcraft diesel oil label also says, "do not use in gasoline engines equipped with catalysts."

I am testing the Motorcraft 10W-30 for diesels in the 351 under the hood of my 1971 Ford LTD convertible. However, I am not recommending that anyone else use oils labeled "diesel" in any gasoline engines. Please consult your vehicle's owners manual, the appropriate authorities, legal council, etc. before choosing a new type of oil for your specific engine. (For most vehicles, simply look under "Engine" and "Oil" in the RockAuto.com catalog to see manufacturer recommended choices. Oils listed by weight (10W-30, 0W-40, etc.) are found in the "Tools & Universal Parts" tab, under "Engine" and finally "Oil.")

Tom Taylor,
RockAuto.com

 

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