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Old 05-06-2013, 02:41 PM   #1
c1skout OP
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This is not an oil thread.....but

My brother was telling me this weekend that he dumped the (Valvoline conventional) oil from his R75-90 frankenbike and replaced it with Harley 20-50 full synthetic, he left the filter in place because he only changes it every other oil change. He started down the road from his house on a road test and when he hit about 3500rpm his engine started cutting out and the oil light came on, so he turned around and went home. Next day he dumped the new synthetic and replaced with conventional oil and everything is back to normal. I told him he was confusing his oil and charge lights but he says no (charge light is red, oil light white). Any ideas why this would happen?
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Old 05-06-2013, 02:43 PM   #2
blaine.hale
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That's not enough test to warrant a result or reasonable conclusion. If he could replicate the issue with the same synthetic, that would be more telling. The oil light or synthetic oil is not going to make a bike cut out either. There might be something else going on that needs diagnosing.
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Old 05-06-2013, 04:16 PM   #3
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The Gods got on that one really fast. Don't use Synthetic in an Airhead. Pisses them off.
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Old 05-06-2013, 04:44 PM   #4
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I just called my brother and double checked his experience. He drove the bike about 400 yards with the synthetic, never even made it to 2nd gear! He pulled out and the bike started misfiring and the oil light came on, turned around and it repeated the misfiring and oil light on the way back to the garage, once in the garage he revved it up from an idle 2 more times with the same results so he shut it off and changed the oil again the next day. Now it runs normally, no misfiring and no oil light with the engine running.
I asked if he wanted to put some more synthetic in to try to replicate the problem in the name of science but he wasn't interested, said he's not that curious.
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:09 PM   #5
blaine.hale
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Missfiring has NOTHING to do with oil.
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disston View Post
The Gods got on that one really fast. Don't use Synthetic in an Airhead. Pisses them off.
This.
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:47 PM   #7
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:52 PM   #8
c1skout OP
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Originally Posted by blaine.hale View Post
Missfiring has NOTHING to do with oil.
Exactly, that's why it's wierd! Mabye if it had hydraulic lifters.....
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Old 05-06-2013, 06:05 PM   #9
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Do you think that the oil worked its way into the blinker fluid reservoir? I have a can of Lucas Replacement Spark ... so let me know if you need it.
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Old 05-06-2013, 06:07 PM   #10
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It was an adverse reaction to using Harley oil. Has nothing to it being synthetic.
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Old 05-06-2013, 07:02 PM   #11
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It was an adverse reaction to using Harley oil. Has nothing to it being synthetic.
+1. That's just wrong on several levels
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Old 05-06-2013, 07:11 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c1skout View Post
I just called my brother and double checked his experience. He drove the bike about 400 yards with the synthetic, never even made it to 2nd gear! He pulled out and the bike started misfiring and the oil light came on, turned around and it repeated the misfiring and oil light on the way back to the garage, once in the garage he revved it up from an idle 2 more times with the same results so he shut it off and changed the oil again the next day. Now it runs normally, no misfiring and no oil light with the engine running.
I asked if he wanted to put some more synthetic in to try to replicate the problem in the name of science but he wasn't interested, said he's not that curious.
Randall over www.xkcd.com has a topical cartoon I would like to share.

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Old 05-06-2013, 08:21 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c1skout View Post
My brother was telling me this weekend that he dumped the (Valvoline conventional) oil from his R75-90 frankenbike and replaced it with Harley 20-50 full synthetic, he left the filter in place because he only changes it every other oil change. He started down the road from his house on a road test and when he hit about 3500rpm his engine started cutting out and the oil light came on, so he turned around and went home. Next day he dumped the new synthetic and replaced with conventional oil and everything is back to normal. I told him he was confusing his oil and charge lights but he says no (charge light is red, oil light white). Any ideas why this would happen?
\
You don't generally run synthetics in the airhead engine not because they care, but because they're old. freshly rebuild engine with all now seals, go for it. 80k on original seals? Nope. It'll leak through all those old seals. Rear main leaks and trashes your clutch. Rings leak getting more oil in combustion chamber = misfiring (check plugs for oil fouling naturally). Worn oil pump doesn't develop pressure because oil is leaking around the rotor. I mean that syn. stuff is seriously slippery.


it's also costly and while you can get a tiny bit more power in a FRWANS engine, it isn't worth it. You don't get longer change intervals, it takes heat better but just changing the cheaper stuff if you fry it works too.

If you want virtue in a can; clean oil, often, is the ticket. Change it too often rather than trying for the bestest most magical stuff. And keep it well matched to the climate to avoid non-filtering of too thick oil at startup.

Anytime you change type, brand or weight of oil, you at least remove the filter and drain it and the canister. You can then put it back but you can get them for $6 so why bother?

Just because you see dino/syn blends on the shelf in the store doesn't mean you can cook up your own in your engine---and have it work.


BTW, I just put new seals in my rear drive so I'll run a syn gear oil back there. Better lubricity at lower viscosity = less power lost in the bevel gear. Not that I'll feel it. I'll also try it in the shaft and tranny just for grins, if I get transfer or leakage I'll cut it out. I use a moly additive in the engine, shaft and FD, (NEVER in the tranny and a different additive for the gear vs engine oils, all Lubromoly stuff at half strength). So that's my little be nice to the motor with good oil thing.

Plaka screwed with this post 05-06-2013 at 08:29 PM
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Old 05-06-2013, 08:44 PM   #14
ironjack63
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I have Valvoline 20w50 synthetic in my '81 R100RT, and it runs like a top. I am firm believer in synthetic in all combustion engines that have some miles on them.
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Old 05-07-2013, 03:38 AM   #15
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Better to use the Valvoline VR1 non synthetic with lots to Zddp to help our flat tappet engines. Modern oils have a different additive package that suits catalytic converter equipped vehicles, but is less effective than older oils with ZDDP on flat tappet engines.

Anyway that's what the Internet tells me and I choose to believe it.......the only way to really tell is to do proper scientific tests, measuring wear in the engines and I have not got the tools, the time or the budget!
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