Flat tappet oils

Flat tappet oils

Postby walterclark » Tue Jul 14, 2009 9:06 pm

At Okemo Don, Ken and I were sitting around Saturday evening talking about something and the subject of motor oils without any Zinc or Phosphorus, and aftermarket makeup additives came up. When I had a minute tonite I took a look at my preferred oil and found this technical service bulletin from Amsoil: http://www.syntheticwerks.com/Feature/FlatTappett.pdf

The synopsis is several of Amsoil's products still contain zincs and phosphorus critical to minimizing cam and tappet wear on flat tappet engines. The bulletin is 2 years old now so I looked at the current product lineup and it appears the following current products still contain zinc and phosphorus:

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Last edited by walterclark on Mon Apr 12, 2010 3:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby Mopar 151 » Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:04 pm

I have switched to Shell Rotella/Valvoline AllFleet in my truck for just this reason - the aftermarket cam needs the "old" levels of zinc EP addative, and diesel-spec oils provide this.

I beleive that the Valvoline VR1(and definitely the Havoline) that I had been using in the race car have had their ZDP levels reduced to the new spec. I'll likely be changing to the new spec Valvoline for this, but will be looking at Penn Pride, Gibbs, and Lucas as well.
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby sdwarf36 » Tue Jul 14, 2009 11:26 pm

Gibbs oil is good-also Brad Penn (the old Kendall)
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby sachilles » Wed Jul 15, 2009 9:42 am

back when I was into rovers, everyone swore by the rotella stuff due to the zinc content. Though I thought it had something to do with making the seals swell a little bit. I was happy with it, and it kept the undercarriage of the truck in good condition too with its "active undercoating system". :lol:
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby Mopar 151 » Fri Apr 09, 2010 3:39 pm

I have recently done a little checking on the subject - in the Valvoline line, the VR1 "racing" oil, the All-Fleet diesel, and the "not street legal" synthetic racing oil all have similar ZDDP (zinc diphosphate) levels - which are 3-4 times what the newest spec. street oils are.
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby Mopar 151 » Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:49 pm

More checking - the problems are oils rated as SM - the newest API spec for gas engines. The CJ-4 spec for diesels allows the higher levels of ZDDP addative. Popular oils - Shell Rotella has 1200 PPM of ZDDP. Valvoline All-Fleet is 1300 PPM, VR1 is 1400 PPM. Brad Penn (fka Kendall) is 1400+ PPM. It should also be noted that Brad Penn uses an exclusive "Pennsylvania grade" base stock, which has superior lubricating properties.

Sadly, Castrol GTX, Texaco, Chevron, Pennzoil and Quaker State do not list ZDDP levels for any of their oils, even on the available product data sheets. Pennzoil motorcycle and HD 4-cycle marine oil are SJ or SL spec, not SM, so they MAY be OK.
Here's a pdf of a magazine article which helps to explain thingshttp://www.motoroilmatters.org/download/Engine%20Builder.pdf
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby KevinGale » Mon Apr 12, 2010 1:10 pm

Walmart now has Shell Rotella in 2.5 gallon containers. I picked up a couple which will about fill up my dry sump system to break in the new motor. Most people use 5 quarts for an oil change, I need 5 gallons. :shock:

Given I have a roller valve train I at least have the option to switch to synthetic after break in. I'm not looking forward to buying 5 gallons of synthetic.
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby Rabbit Farmer » Mon Apr 12, 2010 2:02 pm

I'm not looking forward to buying 5 gallons of synthetic.


Sounds like one oil change on my truck.. minus the synthectic.

Big sump you got. What is the capacity of the pan vs. the sump container?
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby KevinGale » Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:08 pm

The pan holds basically nothing. It's just slightly deeper than the clearance needed for the crankshaft. That's why they call it dry. Between the dry sump tank and all the lines (plus what is left in the motor when you shutdown) is about 5 gallons when you first fill the system. An oil change is less since probably a gallon is left in the system.

The tank I have is a big stock car style tank. The tank in the old modified was a sprint car style and it I think the whole system was only about 3.5 gallons. On the plus side I have a lot of oil to spread out heat and protect against wear. I also never have to worry about the pickup going dry during cornering, acceleration or braking.

Mostly I have no choice. The Modfied chassis just doesn't allow a wet sump setup. The pan would be the lowest point in the car and would be low enough to get destroyed quickly on our bumpy hills. I couldn't even make it to the top to turn around at Okemo. Some people try to raise the engine up but that causes lots of other problems. The chassis is just designed for a dry sump.
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Re: Flat tappet oils

Postby Rabbit Farmer » Mon Apr 12, 2010 10:28 pm

Makes sense now.
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