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Oil advice for modifiers
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Old 06 Jul 2009, 02:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Oil advice for modifiers

If you are modding your car and adding BHP or using it off road then consider your oil choice carefully as the stock manufacturers recommended oil will not give you the protection that your engine requires.

A standard oil will not be thermally stable enough to cope with higher temperatures without "shearing" meaning that the oil will not give the same protection after a couple of thousand miles as it it when it was new.

Let’s start with the fundamentals. An engine is a device for converting fuel into motive power. Car enthusiasts get so deep into the details they lose sight of this!

To get more power, an engine must be modified such that it converts more fuel per minute into power than it did in standard form. To produce 6.6 million foot-pounds per minute of power (ie 200 BHP) a modern engine will burn about 0.5 litres of fuel per minute.(Equivalent to 18mpg at 120mph). So, to increase this output to 300BHP or 9.9 million foot-pounds per minute it must be modified to burn (in theory) 0.75 litres.

However, fuel efficiency often goes out of the window when power is the only consideration, so the true fuel burn will be rather more than 0.75 litres/min.

That’s the fundamental point, here’s the fundamental problem:

Less than 30% of the fuel (assuming it’s petrol) is converted to all those foot-pounds. The rest is thrown away as waste heat. True, most of it goes down the exhaust, but over 10% has to be eliminated from the engine internals, and the first line of defence is the oil.

More power means a bigger heat elimination problem. Every component runs hotter; For instance, piston crowns and rings will be running at 280-300C instead of a more normal 240-260C, so it is essential that the oil films on cylinder walls provide an efficient heat path to the block casting, and finally to the coolant.

Any breakdown or carbonisation of the oil will restrict the heat transfer area, leading to serious overheating.

A modern synthetic lubricant based on true temperature-resistant synthetics is essential for long-term reliability. At 250C+, a mineral or hydrocracked mineral oil, particularly a 5W/X or 10W/X grade, is surprisingly volatile, and an oil film around this temperature will be severely depleted by evaporation loss.

Back in the 1970s the solution was to use a thick oil, typically 20W/50; in the late 1980s even 10W/60 grades were used. But in modern very high RPM engines with efficient high-delivery oil pumps thick oils waste power, and impede heat transfer in some situations.

A light viscosity good synthetic formulated for severe competition use is the logical and intelligent choice for the 21st century.

You must seriously consider a "true" synthetic for "shear stability" and the right level of protection.

Petroleum oils tend to have low resistance to “shearing” because petroleum oils are made with light weight basestocks to begin with, they tend to burn off easily in high temperature conditions which causes deposit formation and oil consumption.
As a result of excessive oil burning and susceptibility to shearing (as well as other factors) petroleum oils must be changed more frequently than synthetics.

True synthetic oils (PAO’s and Esters) contain basically no waxy contamination to cause crystallization and oil thickening at cold temperatures. In addition, synthetic basestocks do not thin out very much as temperatures increase. So, pour point depressants are unnecessary and higher viscosity basestock fluids can be used which will still meet the "W" requirements for pumpability.

Hence, little or no VI improver additive would need to be used to meet the sae 30, 40 or 50 classification while still meeting 0W or 5W requirements.

The end result is that very little shearing occurs within true synthetic oils because they are not "propped up" with viscosity index improvers. There simply is no place to shear back to. In fact, this is easy to prove by just comparing synthetic and petroleum oils of the same grade.

Of course, the obvious result is that your oil remains "in grade" for a much longer period of time for better engine protection and longer oil life.

If you would like advice then please feel free to ask.


Cheers
Guy


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Old 06 Jul 2009, 05:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

Great read Guy
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Old 07 Jul 2009, 05:56 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

Very interesting read

My oil air cooled Motor bike BMW runs a a 'modern' 20/50 BMW recomended the swap from 10 w a few years back in a service bulletin

When I asked them why? they said long term test in 'real world' conditions had seen the lighter weight oil 'break down' and give some of the symptoms you mention above

I have a lightly moded 98 uk turbo producing about 240 It is due for an ecutek re-map so hope to get 280 ish

Im using 10w/40 at present the eng has done 76k miles and has been very well maintained with oil changes every four months (im using an oversized oil filter)

Question is.... what Oil should I look at after the new power hike? grade and brand??

Any help and advice welcomed

Dean Nobby Clark
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Old 07 Jul 2009, 09:02 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

If it's any help Dean, Use Motul 10W 40 in mine (280 bhp standard) and Guy has recently confirmed that it is spot on for my car.
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Old 07 Jul 2009, 10:48 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

Quote:
Originally Posted by rikimaru View Post
If it's any help Dean, Use Motul 10W 40 in mine (280 bhp standard) and Guy has recently confirmed that it is spot on for my car.

Cheers Wayne... tis helpfull indeed

Used 10/40 at present... so that's good matey

1240kg x 280 bhp and lots of twisty torque.... should be ok

Power at Flywheel (BHP) : 280
Weight without Driver (KG) : 1240
Power to Weight Ratio (BHP Per Ton) : 229.43
0 - 60 (Secs) : 4.43
0 - 100 (Secs) : 11.89
60 - 100 (Secs) : 7.46
Quarter Mile (Secs) : 13.15
Terminal Speed (MPH) : 105.18
Drag Strip Quarter Mile (Secs) : 12.75
Drag Strip Terminal Speed (MPH) : 108.64


Thinking of replacing rad with aluminium unit... save more weight
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Last edited by nobby248; 07 Jul 2009 at 10:51 AM. Reason: added info
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Old 07 Jul 2009, 01:49 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

Quote:
Originally Posted by nobby248 View Post
Very interesting read

My oil air cooled Motor bike BMW runs a a 'modern' 20/50 BMW recomended the swap from 10 w a few years back in a service bulletin

When I asked them why? they said long term test in 'real world' conditions had seen the lighter weight oil 'break down' and give some of the symptoms you mention above

I have a lightly moded 98 uk turbo producing about 240 It is due for an ecutek re-map so hope to get 280 ish

Im using 10w/40 at present the eng has done 76k miles and has been very well maintained with oil changes every four months (im using an oversized oil filter)

Question is.... what Oil should I look at after the new power hike? grade and brand??

Any help and advice welcomed

Dean Nobby Clark
Dean,

A 5w-40 or 10w-40 synthetic is ideal for all year round use. Ester based are the very best, have a look at these Opie Oils - Ester Synthetic

Cheers

Guy
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Old 10 Jul 2009, 06:34 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

Quote:
Originally Posted by oilman View Post
Dean,

A 5w-40 or 10w-40 synthetic is ideal for all year round use. Ester based are the very best, have a look at these Opie Oils - Ester Synthetic

Cheers

Guy
Cheers guy

Will check them out
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Old 12 Jul 2009, 04:36 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

prolong dean mutts nuts
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Old 13 Jul 2009, 06:08 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

Quote:
Originally Posted by holyfield View Post
prolong dean mutts nuts
Seen the ads... will check out
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Old 13 Jul 2009, 10:00 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

Why is it the mutts nuts?

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Old 13 Jul 2009, 02:49 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

Having read between the lines... I think they just add a PTFE type substance to thiere oils....

SLICK 50? or the like

Not sure about PTFE use... heard some stories that worry me

Prolong.... certainly have some big claims on thier web site

Life time eng warranty only applies to cars under ten years old and under 100k

But lots of small print

Jury is out on this product until I find out more

In the mean time I will continue to use a good quality 10w/40

Any info on SLICK 50 Use in Subaru's?
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Old 13 Jul 2009, 03:42 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

DONT use slick50. Just an expensive way to block your oil filter!

Cheers

Guy
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Old 13 Jul 2009, 07:17 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

I have heard good things to about prolong products,and if you check out Total impreza from a few months ago,the green scooby that they restore gets the full prolong treatment and gets good reports.I have ordered some engine tretment and gearbox treatment today. will post the results after i have had it in the car for 6 months.

On the subject of slick 50 i have used this in at least 20 of my previous motors and never had any problems,and i am sure it saved the heads on my MG montego turbo 15 years ago when i had to drive 7 miles off the motorway to get to a garage as the car had run out of oil.
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Old 13 Jul 2009, 07:20 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

I must admit though ,after scouring the internet and reading various reports i have not added any to my impreza,but my legacy gt got 2 x 750 ml top ups in 3 years,and is still up and running as sweet as ever.
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Old 14 Jul 2009, 11:51 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Oil advice for modifiers

The 'active' ingredient in that stuff seems to be Teflon Don't think I want that coursing through my engine, turbo and oil filter thank you very much.

This seems to sum up most of what I have read about this stuff pretty well;

Quote:
"Slick 50 (engine oil additives)
Slick 50 and other engine oil additives supposedly reduce engine wear and increase fuel efficiency.
You may have heard the commercial or seen the ad:
Multiple tests by independent laboratories have shown that when properly applied to an automotive engine, Slick 50 Engine Formula reduces wear on engine parts. Test results have shown that Slick 50 treated engines sustained 50 percent less wear than test engines run with premium motor oil alone.
There are about 50 other products on the market which make similar claims, many of them being just duplicate products under different names from the same company. The price for a pint or quart of these engine oil additives runs from a few dollars to more than $20. Do these products do any good? Not much. Do they do any harm. Sometimes.
What's in these miracle lubricants, anyway? If they're so wonderful, why don't car manufacturers recommend their usage? Why don't oil companies get into the additive business? Where are these studies mentioned by Petrolon (Slick 50)? Probably in the same file cabinet as the tobacco company studies proving the health benefits of smoking.
The basic ingredient is the same in most of these additives: 50 weight engine oil with standard additives. The magic ingredient in Slick 50, Liquid Ring, Matrix, QM1 and T-Plus from K-Mart is Polytetrafluoroethylene. Don't try to pronounce it: call it PTFE. But don't call it Teflon, which is what it is, because that is a registered trademark. Dupont, who invented Teflon, claims that "Teflon is not useful as an ingredient in oil additives or oils used for internal combustion engines." But what do they know? They haven't seen the secret studies done by Petrolon (Slick 50).
PTFE is a solid which is added to engine oil and coats the moving parts of the engine.
However, such solids seem even more inclined to coat non-moving parts, like oil passages and filters. After all, if it can build up under the pressures and friction exerted on a cylinder wall, then it stands to reason it should build up even better in places with low pressures and virtually no friction. 

This conclusion seems to be borne out by tests on oil additives containing PTFE conducted by the NASA Lewis Research Center, which said in their report, "In the types of bearing surface contact we have looked at, we have seen no benefit. In some cases we have seen detrimental effect. The solids in the oil tend to accumulate at inlets and act as a dam, which simply blocks the oil from entering. Instead of helping, it is actually depriving parts of lubricant" (Rau).
In defense of Slick 50, tests done on a Chevy 6 cylinder engine by the University of Utah Engineering Experiment Station found that after treatment with the PTFE additive the test engine's friction was reduced by 13.1 percent, the output horsepower increased from 5.3 percent to 8.1 percent, and fuel economy improved as well. Unfortunately, the same tests concluded that "There was a pressure drop across the oil filter resulting from possible clogging of small passageways." Oil analysis showed that iron contamination doubled after the treatment, indicating that engine wear increased (Rau).
the FTC and Slick 50
In 1997, three subsidiaries of Quaker State Corp. (the makers of Slick 50) settled Federal Trade Commission charges that ads for Quaker State's Slick 50 Engine Treatment were false and unsubstantiated. According to the FTC complaint, claims such as the following made in Slick 50 ads falsely represented that without Slick 50, auto engines generally have little or no protection from wear at start-up and commonly experience premature failure caused by wear:
"Every time you cold start your car without Slick 50 protection, metal grinds against metal in your engine."
"With each turn of the ignition you do unseen damage, because at cold start-up most of the oil is down in the pan. But Slick 50's unique chemistry bonds to engine parts. It reduces wear up to 50% for 50,000 miles."
"What makes Slick 50 Automotive Engine Formula different is an advanced chemical support package designed to bond a specially activated PTFE to the metal in your engine."
In fact, the FTC said, "most automobile engines are adequately protected from wear at start-up when they use motor oil as recommended in the owner's manual. Moreover, it is uncommon for engines to experience premature failure caused by wear, whether they have been treated with Slick 50 or not."*
zinc: good for the common cold & your car's engine
Another type of additive is zinc dialkyldithiophosphate. Zinc-d is found in Mechanics Brand Engine Tune Up, K Mart Super Oil Treatment, and STP Engine Treatment With XEP2, among others. The touting of zinc-d as a special ingredient in engine oil additives is a little like the Shell ads which touted "Platformate." (Most gasoline has similar additives but under different names.) Zinc-d is an additive in most, if not all, major oil brands. The wonder oils just put more of the stuff in a 50 weight engine oil. It would be useful if your engine were ever operated under extremely abnormal conditions where metal contacts metal: "the zinc compounds react with the metal to prevent scuffing, particularly between cylinder bores and piston rings....unless you plan on spending a couple of hours dragging your knee at Laguna Seca, adding extra zinc compounds to your oil is usually a waste.... Also, keep in mind that high zinc content can lead to deposit formation on your valves, and spark plug fouling" (Rau).
If zinc-d is so good for your engine, why haven't oil manufacturers been putting more of it in their standard mix of oil and additives? Actually, oil companies have been decreasing the amount of zinc-d because the evidence indicates that zinc-d causes deterioration of catalytic converters.
The bottom line is that outside of the testimonials of happy and satisfied customers and the guarantees of company executives about the wonderful effects that studies have shown will follow the use of their products, there isn't much support for using oil additives. Of course, there are those millions of customers who buy the stuff: aren't they proof that these things really work? Not really. They're proof that this stuff really sells!
cleansed, not coated
On the other side of the engine block are those additives which will cleanse your engine, not coat it. Stuff like Bardahl, Rislone and Marvel Mystery Oil claim they can make your engine run quieter and smoother, and reduce oil burning. These are products which contain solvents or detergents such as kerosene, naphthalene, xylene, acetone or isopropanol. If used properly, I suppose these products will strip off your Teflon and zinc protective coatings! But unless you have a really old and abused car, you probably have no need of stripping away sludge and deposits from your engine. Thus, you probably have no need for these wonder cleaners. If you overuse such products you can damage your engine by promoting metal to metal contact.
If you use a synthetic oil, such as Mobil 1, you are advised not to use any engine treatments or additives. Mobil claims that
The use of an engine oil additive is not recommended, either by Mobil or by virtually any vehicle manufacturer. In fact, it may void your new-car warranty.
Finally, you may have seen the commercial where two engines are allowed to run without any oil in them and the one which had the special oil additive keeps on ticking after the other engine has conked out. This may be appealing to the car owner who never changes his or her oil or who runs his or her car without oil, but it should be of little interest to the person who knows how to take care of their automobile.
Should you invest in something like Tufoil? It is touted as being "a super-suspension of micro-miniature PTFE particles and soluble Molybdenum, permanently suspended in oil." And, it will not clog filters or oil openings, according to the manufacturer. Or, how about Lubrilon, which contain a nylon polymer that will coat your metal parts? Or Bishop's Original Permafused Lubrication™, which also coats your metal parts with an anti-wear lubricant film? It's your money, but I think you'd be better off if you just changed your oil and oil filter regularly. And don't forget to change the fuel and air filters at the recommended intervals. We can't say for sure that these new products do no good, but what good they might do is probably not necessary or of much value for the average vehicle owner who takes proper care of the vehicle."
I'll be sticking with oil and filter changes every few months me thinks.
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