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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I believe this was posted in a thread a few days ago here and on Bobs the oil guy. However I have not heard many thoughts on the use of Motorcycle engine oil in our classic flat tappet engines. Here is a reply from Castrol on the subject, thanks to 65convertible.

For those consumers that wish not to use a GF-4oil in these vehicles, Castrol does offer the following products that contain Zinc at a level that is typical of the Zinc level found in oils (APISG) marketed during the "muscle car" era of time:





The following Castrol products have Zinc levels thatare typical of API SG oil:



1. Castrol Syntec 20W-50 (*NEWLY FORMULATED classicoil formula – see link to website below for information on our new 20W-50 product)

2. Castrol SYNTEC 5W-40

3. Castrol Grand Prix 4T 10W-40 (product has been replaced by Castrol Motorcycle 4T 10W-40)

4. Castrol Grand Prix 4T 20W-50 (product has been replaced by Castrol Motorcycle 4T 20W-50)

5. Castrol GO! ATV 10W-40

6. Castrol GO! ATV 20W-50

7. Castrol TWS Motorsport 10W-60 (full synthetic, available @ BMW dealerships)

8. BMW Long Life 5W-30 (full synthetic,available @ BMW dealerships)

9. Castrol GO! 10W-40Motorcycle Oil

10. Castrol GO! 20W-50 Motorcycle Oil

So gang what's your thoughts on this since it is getting harder and harder to find older CI and SL rated oils? I hate the thought of having to special order oil and pay shipping and what not when i should be able to get good stuff from the local parts store.
Thanks sorry for beating a dead horse :rofl:
 

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Motorcycle engines operate at more extreme tempetures, at least the air cooled ones do.

I don't see a problem using m/c oil in a car.

Z. Ray
 

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I think other than buying supplements no one is really sure what to do. Their just doesn't seem to be any definitive answer.

I also do not like the prospect of buying any supplement for oil. There should be an answer to this oil dilemma. I, for one, just don't know where to find it!
 

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There are many answers for how to put the zddp back in your oil. All those Castrol products in the original post will do it. No reason that I'm aware of not to run "motorcycle" oil in a car. Oil is oil. It's the additive package that makes the difference.

Some kinds of diesel oil will work. But you've got to look for an API rating of CH-4 or lower.

For that matter, if you can find "Service" (gas engine) oil with an API rating of SJ, that will work.

There's also Brad Penn brand dyno juice. Joe Gibb racing oil has a "break in" blend that will work. Amsoil, I am told, will work. Red Line might work.

The additive Z dd Plus will work. Comp Cams break in additive will work. The hard to find and possibly out of production products of GM Engine Oil Supplement (aka "EOS") or STP in the red bottle will work (although I believe you need to use a lot of STP to get the proper zddp level of 1500 ppm or better).

The thing is, no one knows if the zddp issue is to blame for these flat cam failures.

One theory I like is that it's because of the old engine blocks. The lifter bores are egged out and this allows the lifter to get cocked and stop rotating. When this happens lobe wipe-age is not far behind, like within seconds. We need more reporting from the victims as to whether they bushed their lifter bores in their vintage block, or even mic'ed them, or whether the victim used a brand new block.

Another theory is a rash of bad lifters that were all you could get for awhile when Johnson/Hylift was out of business. However, Pro Topline bought their operation and is supposed to be back in production. If you want to be sure about the quality of your lifters, contact Barry at Ford specialists Survival Motorsports -- http://www.survivalmotorsports.com/

Another theory is bad cam blanks. This is the most tin-foil hat theory of all, but it has a lot of believers.

Another counter-measure, besides boosting your zddp or bushing your lifter bores, is to groove the lifter bore, to allow additional lube to acces the cam lobe. Comp Cams makes a cheap tool to do this.

Another counter-measure is to drill a tiny hole through the lifter face. I believe some lifter manufacturers do this with lasers.

Finally, there's the option to do nothing, to assume the rash of failures is unrelated to zddp and to assume that none of the other factors -- worn lifter bores, bad lifters, bad cams, or faulty cam break in -- are going to happen to you.

So there you go, lots of things to do, including doing nothing (always a favorite in my book).
 

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I'm going to use a forbidden word. I ASSUME those that are paranoid about what oil
to use have highly modified engines(motors for younger people). I've been driving
old cars as daily drivers for over 50 years. In most cases the car ends up in
the bone yard at well over 200,000 miles due to terminal rust. Never had a major
engine problem. I've always used a current name brand oil, no additives.
 

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Slim, you remind me of another set of theories for wiped cams. One is the use of high-rate springs required by the more extreme cam grinds. The other is the new extreme cam grinds themselves -- that the grinders are putting too steep an opening ramp in the lobe. However, neither of these theories accounts for the failure of milder cams.

I personally lost a lobe on a Crower cam with an "RV" level spec. This was at least four years ago, before the evil API SM had even come out. It also wasn't due to a bad break in, because the cam had 25,000 miles on it.

I also lost a lobe in a 350 Chevy about 15 years ago. I was told at the time that this was not unusual with the SBC. It also was an "RV" level cam.

Johnpro lost a cam in his '66. I do not think it was a bottom of the page cam.
 

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Bill, sorry I missed your point!
 

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slim said:
Bill, sorry I missed your point!
That's OK, it happens to me too.

When you mentioned highly modified engines, it reminded me of two other causes that people sometimes mention for wiped cams -- high rate valve springs and radical cam grinds. That set off some yammering on my part, to the effect that these theories don't apply when mild cams fail.
 

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Maybe if you PT me you could explain!
 

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I have done the same thing that Slim has done for the last 43 years. I am a bit younger than Slim. All with good luck.

I have not had an issue or a problem with any of the oil changes up to now. In fact I would not have an issue now if it wasn't for my Mustang. It is a stock 289. Not a racing engine, etc. But from my understanding it requires a certain amount of Zinc in the oil to protect the cam, etc from premature wear. According to Castrol and others this Zinc part of the oil additive formula has been reduced in most case, I believe, to a level that may not be acceptable to our/my engine. What to do? Well that is my question. I don't want to be buying additives and hoping that my recipe is correct. There must be an oil that can be used that is not $7.00 or more per quart that will fulfill this need.

Slim I agree with you but I think this change may be different than the ones in the past. Wish and hope that I am wrong.
 

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I replaced so many SBC cams with wiped lobes between '79 and '86 that I was sure one of the jobbers were going to start putting them in tune up kits...
 

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Sounds like I need to do some investigating!
 

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You cannot assume that the oil mixtures from the last 30 years will give you the same results as the oil mixtures of today ... they absolutely will not.

You could likely get by with todays formulated oils in your flat tappet engine for many years. Why? Because you probably don't drive your flat tappet cammed engines very much each year.

The engine in my '66 is mildly modified. It runs in the low 14's, but it's nothing real radical. It wiped a cam lobe at 66,000 miles.

Once you wipe the lobe and have to go to the trouble of cam swap, you definitely start re-thinking things.
 

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John, I'm way behind the times. Had no idea sliding lifters have been obsolete on
"modern engines" for some time so the current oil spec doesn't accomodate it!
It's sorta analogous to the valve seat recession issue when lead was eliminated
from gas.
You're right. I'm probably getting away with both no lead in the gas and the new
low zinc oil. My old (vintage) cars aren't driven long and hard like I did 20 years ago!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
So John what are you using now after the wiped cam lobe? I did come across some CI rated diesel oil at the auto parts place. I was thinking maybe that'd still work. I think it was Chevron Delo. Shell Rotella they had has the new CJ rating.
 
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