Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Synthetic oil??

Discussions of MG Sports Cars

  1. #1
    Freshman Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Austin, TX USA
    Posts
    23
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    2
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts

    Synthetic oil??

    In college, I worked the lube rack at Houston's BMC dealer, and we used only 30W Valvoline non-detergent oil. Old-timer mechanics said the carbon "sealed" the engine and detergent would clean it off and make 'em smoke. I'm assuming that synthetic oil would be a bad thing in a rebuilt MGA, not the least reason being the leaks would probably be worse. Anyone have experience or thoughts?

  2. #2
    Moderator Mickey Richaud's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Townsend, Tennessee
    Posts
    14,915
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    1
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    26
    Thanked in
    26 Posts

    Re: Synthetic oil??

    Old-timer mechanics... guess that would be US now!

    Only thought I have is that the factory spec'd 20W50 and that's what I use. And the detergent (what little I suspect there is) helps keep buildup (sludge) from forming on the innards. And as for synthetic oil, I'm on the fence, but leery as to whether the seals in our LBCs can handle it effectively. I'm sticking with conventional.


    Mickey
    "There are three kinds of men. One who learns by readin'. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on that electric fence for themselves." Will Rogers
    Mickey Richaud - '73 MGB, '69 MGB GT/V6 (both SOLD! ); Victor TF 1800; '03 Jaguar XK8
    ------------------------------------------------------------

  3. The Following User Says Thank You to Mickey Richaud For This Useful Post:

    Bob Branson (09-29-2018)

  4. #3
    Yoda Gliderman8's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    8,527
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    11
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    38
    Thanked in
    38 Posts

    Re: Synthetic oil??

    I bought 10 quarts of synthetic VR1 20-50. Like Mickey I’ve been reluctant to put in my car. I’m still hooked on Brad Penn conventional oil. In fact I found a home for the synthetic oil that I have and will be giving it away this week.
    Elliot
    Central PA
    1973 TR6 Damson Plum / Biscuit interior, HVDA 5-speed, Good Parts Hubs
    1976 TR6 White/Biscuit interior SOLD
    Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.

  5. #4
    Senior Member blueosprey90's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    New Milford, CT
    Posts
    65
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts

    Re: Synthetic oil??

    I run Valvoline VR-1 Racing Oil for its ZDDP levels in my MGA. I try to run 30 weight, but will use 20-50 in a pinch. The engine builders say that one should break in on conventional (dyno) oil, but it is then OK to switch to synthetic. Of course, one has to consider whether the synthetic is good for our engines, because they most likely are low on ZDDP. The VR-1 Racing oil is a conventional oil.
    See https://www.valvoline.com/about-us/faq/racing-oil-faq

  6. #5
    Freshman Member barneymg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Location
    North America at large (previously Naperville, Ilinois)
    Posts
    8
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    2
    Thanked in
    2 Posts

    Re: Synthetic oil??

    I have never used synthetic oil in anything. "Synthetic Blend" advertised as 50% synthetic is kind of a hoax, as normal motor oils these days are about 25% synthetic anyway.

    I have a theory that lack of ZDDP is irrelevant, because when they remove ZDDP they add something else to serve the same purpose. It is almost impossible to buy a bad motor oil these days, since the quality is mandated by the auto manufacturers.

    I also like to put my money where my mouth is, so about 20 years ago I started using the cheapest oil available at Walmart. It is their house brand "Super Tech" 20W50, and I have good results with it for hundreds of thousands of miles. A while back someone else decided to give it a try, and they looked up the spec's for it, and reported that, "It has plenty of ZDDP". Say what?

    So I looked up the spec's, and sure enough it has 1300 PPM ZDDP. So now I have egg on my face, because I didn't prove that you don't need ZDDP. But I did show that you don't need to spend big money an anything special to get good serviceable motor oil.

    As so happens, much of the ZDDP was removed from SOME oil to protect catalytic converters. Catalytic converters were introduced for the 1975 model year. Any car built after 1974 (with a CC) uses oil no heavier than 10W40. So they didn't have to remove the ZDDP from heavier oils. So it turns out the heavier oils, 15W40 and 20W50 never had the ZDDP removed, and it is apparently an industry wide standard. So when I buy the cheap oil at Walmart it has the full dose of ZDDP.

    The engine currently in my MGA has over 300,000 miles on the crankshaft and main bearings and rocker shaft and rocker bushings. Only reason the rod bearing were changed is because of loss of oil from a failed oil cooler hose last Spring. Cylinder walls and camshaft and tappets have over 200,000 miles and still doing well. Pistons were changed again last Summer (after 200,000 miles) due to a broken top ring, but the cylinder walls are still okay, so I just honed it lightly and dropped in the new pistons and rings. I had to change the cylinder head four years ago, but the old one had been on three different engines in 20 years, something like 300,000 miles.

    Cheap oil is good? Food for thought.
    Barney Gaylord - 1958 MGA with an attitude
    http://MGAguru.com - barneymg@mgaguru.com

    Please do not leave a PM for me on the forum server (expect long delays).
    If you want to contact me privately, please use my personal email link above.

  7. #6
    Luke Skywalker
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Giswil, CH & Fallbrook the Avo Capital, USA
    Posts
    1,590
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    8
    Thanked in
    8 Posts

    Re: Synthetic oil??

    It’s like beer! Everyone has their fav.
    Cheers,
    D.
    "If it's got t*ts or tyres, you've got problems"
    www.englishmotorsatfairbrook.org
    TVR Car Club North America Southwest Regional Organiser

  8. #7
    Great Pumpkin DrEntropy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Elsinore, DK
    Posts
    33,198
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    36
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    73
    Thanked in
    72 Posts

    Re: Synthetic oil??

    Quote Originally Posted by barneymg
    I have a theory that lack of ZDDP is irrelevant, because when they remove ZDDP they add something else to serve the same purpose. It is almost impossible to buy a bad motor oil these days, since the quality is mandated by the auto manufacturers.

    I also like to put my money where my mouth is, so about 20 years ago I started using the cheapest oil available at Walmart. It is their house brand "Super Tech" 20W50, and I have good results with it for hundreds of thousands of miles. A while back someone else decided to give it a try, and they looked up the spec's for it, and reported that, "It has plenty of ZDDP". Say what?

    So I looked up the spec's, and sure enough it has 1300 PPM ZDDP. So now I have egg on my face, because I didn't prove that you don't need ZDDP. But I did show that you don't need to spend big money an anything special to get good serviceable motor oil.


    Been saying similar for years. The spec's the S.
    A.E. & ASTM set HAVE to be met, otherwise it can't be on the shelf. Refineries make the product, sell it bulk to a lot of the brand-name retailers. The packaging is from the brand.

    The 10w30 goes in the Toyota (converter). The rest run 20w50 of whatever's on sale.
    '64 MGB, '67 Lotus Elan S-3 DHC,'69 Lotus Elan +2
    '78 Alfa Romeo Spider-undergoing surgery: O=\*/=O
    '84 300D Turbo-"Diesela"-Now my Daily: Oo|≣|oO
    '02 Toyota Camry- SWMBO's 'new-to-her' Daily. <sigh>
    Chaos & Mayhem PTY, LTD..C.I.O. & Floor Sweepervisor

  9. #8
    Jedi Warrior
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Palatine, illinois
    Posts
    530
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    1
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    8
    Thanked in
    5 Posts

    Re: Synthetic oil??

    Barney

    Good to see . you on the forum. Missed at the club meetings.

    You state: Any car built after 1974 (with a CC) uses oil no heavier than 10W40. My 78 B and my 94 XJS (both of which came with CCs) call for 20W50. Can you clarify?
    Maynard
    94 Jaguar XJS 6.0 V12
    91 Jaguar XJS (RIP)
    86 Jaguar XJ6
    78MGB
    67MGB

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •