I will be changing the oil in my new to me 1915. I assume 30 weight non detergent oil is best where I live, near Seattle. Should ZDDP be added to the oil, or is there a preferred oil that does not need anything added?
Please disregard. I have been doing some reading and do not wish to stir up any controversy.
Keith, you will get lots of different opinions on a question that has been asked a million times here before. My best advice is to use a decent 5/30 10/30 oil, and change it at every 4-500 miles. This of course is just my opinion, but it works well for me.
Additives to the oil not necessary .
This is just my educated opinion, and that of most folks.
Use 5w30 or 10w30 and change it every 4 or 5 hundred miles.
Forget the non detergent.
The multi-grade, Which only come in detergent, will keep down the sludge build up. It will not dissolve built up sludge but it will keep more from building up.
If you are going to use super heavy valve springs and a racing high lift cam then you may add some zddp. Otherwise save your money or send it to me.
Even the rebuilders will mostly agree that about the only time you might want to add ZDDP to your oil is during the break in period. After that, its probably a waste of money. Just use a good quality detergent oil that is wet clutch compatible and you'll be fine. Get out there and drive!
Aaron hit the nail on the head.
Kevin's suggestion of " Just use a good quality detergent oil that is wet clutch compatible and you'll be fine. Get out there and drive! " ..... matches the use of 4 stroke motorcycle oil in the T powerplant .... since the same oil lubricates engine and transmission. Key words: Wet clutch compatable
When you talk about wet clutch compatible do you buy motorcycle oil? Motorcycle oil is generally pretty pricey compared to a standard quart of "car" motor oil. If the extra $$ saves the engine I suppose its irrelevant. But since it's brought up, what do T drivers typically buy when they're at the parts store?
For me a brand quality oil, esp. what is on sale
Price difference isn't that much unless you go synthetic.
As far as your request for what drivers typically purchase..... the general response may be.. the cheapest $$$$$ oil on the shelf.
I have observed most know little to nothing of the API service ratings or viscosity or what they really mean to the application..... or just plain ignorant of what is printed on the oil container.
In the day, Ford called for a quality oil of a light to medium grade.
What does that mean in today's formulated oil ?
I use synthetic 4 stroke motorcycle oil.... 10W40 viscosity, and have since engine re-build 15 years ago.
There are plenty of oils compatible with wet clutches without spending the extra $ on "motorcycle" oil. My dirt bike, my sons, and my grandsons all say any oil rated API "SE" or higher and 10-30 to 20-50 work fine. I have never bought the "motorcycle oil" argument for the T (I don't even buy if for the dirt bikes). These cars accrued millions of miles using straight mineral oil and having no ZDDP The Ford clutch is tough and with a good spring will not slip. Most T's have the original clutch. Makes you wonder if they survived all those years without Zinc additive is it really necessary? My vote is no. The valve spring pressure in a T is in the 26-28 pound range. Much ado about nothing.
Lots of people say the modern equivalent of the oil Ford recommended is 30 weight, but...
You guys should work backwards and report which oil made your engine go bad so everyone can avoid it. I think it will be a short to non- existent list.
Good point Justin.
I have NEVER bought wet clutch oil for any of my motorcycles.
I have never heard of a clutch coming apart on a motorcycle or a model T because of the oil. Buying it for a model T is ok but totally not required.
The key is oil thin enough to splash lubricate and clean enough to keep the engine clean and lubricated.
Any multi viscosity oil will do that for you.
More importantly, just change that engine oil, whatever type or brand, each 500-700 miles too...don't wait 2 years to do it
I'm with Bob Jablonski. I use full synthetic motor cycle oil. I run 20w50 as recommended by a well known SoCal. engine builder. Since moving back to real cold weather here in the midwestI have had no cold weather oil thickening problems . I by the cheaper Walmart brand.
Without an oil pump, getting the oil to where it should be fast and efficiently is the key for me. 5W-20 Wally oil does the trick. Grandpa's being running it in my 11 since the early fifties. I've tried heavier oils and have a hard time cranking.
The moral of the story is use whatever you want.
I recall the service info on my old 2004 Honda ATV advised against oils labelled "energy conserving" in the API seal. Evidently some of these brands had molybdenum compounds in the to reduce friction and that cause problems with the wet clutches. However, I see many synthetic brands labelled "energy conserving" as well. I use a high quality synthetic oil in my car but I also have a Watts clutch in it. Not sure if that's relevant or not.
There is oils you shouldn't use.
50 weight for example. Someone asked me why his T was so hard to crank. He had 50 weight in it.
Someone else asked what the best oil to use in a T was. Someone told him vegetable oil. 4 litres of cooking oil & 50 miles of driving showed that was a really bad idea.
What simply amazes me about T owners is the astounding number of things they try out on the car. Usually involving home made brews and over the counter miracle pour in junk they swear is doing wonders with absolutely no provable facts beyond what their mind and wallet tell them. Kip's post set me off. What kind of a moron would fill his engine with cooking oil in the first place? "Any multi viscosity oil will provide adaquate lubrication". Period. What part of the english language/common sense logic are you having trouble with?
He put the vegetable oil in because someone told him to. It turned gummy. I'm guessing the person who told him that was either jealous or nuts.
The guy who had 50 weight didn't know any better. After putting in 10w30 it was much much easier to start.
I use 10/30 oil for diesel engines it still has the zinc in it because diesel engines still have gear driven cams etc. works great Cheers Colin
A lot of people around me use 15w-40 diesel truck oil like Shell Rotell and swear by it. Has the zinc and higher viscosity.