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Old 03-21-2013, 09:09 PM   #16
supershaft
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Penny pinching and motorcycles? I just don't get it. To me motorcycling has always been a sport, not a means of transportation. Especially a money saving means of transportation. If I had that in mind, I would have a scooter or a Geo Metro or the like. IMO, a good, economical car is way less costly than a motorcycle no matter how you ride it. I mean, I am not going to start running $25 a quart Motul real synthetic motor oil but I am not going to worry about eight dollars a quart oil versus five dollars a quart oil when I think the eight dollars a quart oil is a lot better. I guess it is just a matter of degrees.

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Old 03-22-2013, 09:13 AM   #17
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Well, Canadian Tire sure sells Castrol "Grand Prix" Motorcycle oil. Blended in Canada with domestic and imported components. SG rated, just bought some in 10w40 for the little Honda and they do have 20w50.

Pretty sure Wally has it also.
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Old 04-14-2013, 05:52 PM   #18
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i read the benchmark zddp article that recommended 30 or 40 weight valvoline vr1, not available in canada. gtx is available in 10 30 and 10 40. i did notice that napa has the vr1 20-50 oil, i also noticed that some people are putting 20 50 in their airheads. what do i do?? i will buy what works best and lasts longest, not what is the cheapest.
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Old 04-14-2013, 06:29 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by H96669 View Post
Well, Canadian Tire sure sells Castrol "Grand Prix" Motorcycle oil. Blended in Canada with domestic and imported components. SG rated, just bought some in 10w40 for the little Honda and they do have 20w50.

Pretty sure Wally has it also.
The 20w50 Castrol Grand Prix is what I'm now using in my R100/7. I was using BelRay Mineral in a 4 litre jug for my '74 Honda, mostly because I thought it was best for the wet clutch. I had thought of using it in the airhead, but didn't think it was needed. It's more pricey than the Castrol, and I had read that the airheads can stomach the detergent packages and additives since they have a dry clutch. Not sure if that's proper thinking.
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Old 04-14-2013, 07:11 PM   #20
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As has been stated before, in many other oil threads on many forums throughout the web. Castrol 20/50 is pretty much the preferred oil for airhead BMWs throughout the world. It is relatively inexpensive and it just plain works.

If you were around back when these bikes were new, and hung out in any of the smaller BMW shops, you would have found that they routinely used Castrol oils.

BMW Canada does not recommend Castrol as they would prefer you spend twice the money on their oil. But then, they also charge more for everything else, compared to when we check prices elsewhere. Simple example are wheel bearings. I can get proper well made wheel bearings from a bearing shop for approx. 1/3 the price of the OEM bearings from BMW, which are actually manufactured and come out of the exact same factory. But the OEM ones come in that nice BMW package. Oooooh, Awwwwww.

So just put Castrol Grand Prix GTX 20/50 formulated for motorcycles with an SG rating in your Airhead and know that the oil is perfectly fine.
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:45 PM   #21
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As has been stated before, in many other oil threads on many forums throughout the web. Castrol 20/50 is pretty much the preferred oil for airhead BMWs throughout the world. It is relatively inexpensive and it just plain works.

If you were around back when these bikes were new, and hung out in any of the smaller BMW shops, you would have found that they routinely used Castrol oils.

BMW Canada does not recommend Castrol as they would prefer you spend twice the money on their oil. But then, they also charge more for everything else, compared to when we check prices elsewhere. Simple example are wheel bearings. I can get proper well made wheel bearings from a bearing shop for approx. 1/3 the price of the OEM bearings from BMW, which are actually manufactured and come out of the exact same factory. But the OEM ones come in that nice BMW package. Oooooh, Awwwwww.

So just put Castrol Grand Prix GTX 20/50 formulated for motorcycles with an SG rating in your Airhead and know that the oil is perfectly fine.

It's 20w-50 for all my air cooled 4 stroke engines, that's a no brainer.
The big conversation is whether to use motorcycle spec non synthetic oil [JASO MA, API spec SG] like Castrol Gran Prix, or Pennzoil Motorcycle,,,,,non motorcycle spec,,,,,or full synthetic motorcycle oil.

I think the fact that this particular engine is quite low stress output, quite low piston speed, etc, a full synthetic, as much as I'm a fan, would be a bit of a waste. Fact is, synthetic gets just as dirty as non synthetic. And,,,,as it's an air cooled engine, it has a higher piston/cylinder clearance compared to liquid cooled engines. So residue of combustion passes by the rings easier on air cooled engines causing acidic deposits to enter the oil easier.
As well, as we all know, this engine does not share it's lubrication with either clutch or gearbox. So while the enhanced sheer viscosity length of a motorcycle oil may not be needed, the higher ZDDP is very much needed for the old school valve train.

I've now got 115,000kms on my airhead, and I'm fully confident that the best way to enhance the life of these things is with frequent oil changes and good non synthetic API SG oil. I would not ever use a non motorcycle engine oil in any of my bikes.

IMO, on my other high output engines, Amzoil 20W-50 ester based full synthetic is the industry standard that most are trying to achieve but cannot.
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:13 PM   #22
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Yes, stay with dyno oil (non-synthetic). A lot of us have tried to change over to Synthetic oils on older bikes, and found that those with more than a few miles on them tend to leak like a sieve with synthetic. And just changing back to dyno oil stopped the leaks.

On the other hand, if you do a total rebuild on your engine, with fresh seals everywhere, then synthetic should be fine. Many have done that and been very happy.

For myself, I do not see any reason to change to synthetic on these old engines. I just change the oil and filter quite often. Usually every 3-5000 miles, depending on the type of riding. It goes in clean and comes out only a little dirty, but I change it anyway. I usually will do the oil change in the evening, after a good day of riding, and while the oil is still fairly warm. Sit back and have a few beers with buddies and let the oil drain. Then button it all up with a new filter and pour in the oil. All set to go the next morning.
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:26 PM   #23
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Valvoline VR1

I was in Walmart yesterday, they now stock Valvoline VR1 ($6.95 per quart)
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:27 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveBall View Post
If you were around back when these bikes were new, and hung out in any of the smaller BMW shops, you would have found that they routinely used Castrol oils.
What they used 20~40 years ago isn't necessarily the same thing that is currently sold as GTX.

If I had a gas-powered car I might use GTX in it. Doesn't mean it's the right product for all engines.
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Old 04-16-2013, 06:06 AM   #25
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Castrol 4T at Crappy Tire ...
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Old 04-16-2013, 06:33 PM   #26
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I stopped at a NAPA here (Edmonton) yesterday.Valvoline Racing oil 20W50, 1qt.(946ml).
On sale for 3.60 ea.
I will try a case.
You might have to ask, it was in the back, to go back to the warehouse.
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Old 04-16-2013, 06:36 PM   #27
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I will get a case I seen it on the shelf as well there
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Old 04-17-2013, 05:21 PM   #28
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No Anton, I seriously doubt that Castrol GTX from the 70s and 80s is the same formula as what we can get today. And there are a few different formulas of GTX available today. I always go with the Castrol GTX that is formulated for motorcycles with the SG rating. Never had a problem.

I am certain that there are other oils that will also do as good or even better job. But for me, I go with what is easily available just about anywhere I go, so that I don't end up mixing or changing to some unknown brand.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:20 PM   #29
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I always go with the Castrol GTX that is formulated for motorcycles with the SG rating.
What oil are you talking about? As far as I can tell, GTX does not show up anywhere in Castol's motorcycle products. At least, not by Castrol's definition.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:40 PM   #30
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What oil are you talking about? As far as I can tell, GTX does not show up anywhere in Castol's motorcycle products. At least, not by Castrol's definition.

Perhaps the product line is a little different up here in canada. I used to live in Oregon and drove a vw i bought in canada. i took my car for service to a vw shop. all of the mechanics were baffled at what the saw under the hood. Our climate begets different fuels, engines and i am sure oils.
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