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Which Oil To Use In Older Bikes?

Discussion in 'Bling and Appearance' started by rodgerdodger, Dec 8, 2005.

  1. Hey all,

    I know these 'which oil' questions are becoming tedious but I've actually searched the posts and can't find anything specifically relating to what I'm wondering.

    I've got a '83 XL600R and was wondering if the extra $30 I've seen the fully synthetic 10W 40 oil for is worth it? I've posted this new topic in the case that older single cylinder engines really don't need fully synthetic stuff and I would just be wasting my money. I also saw some BelRay stuff advertised as thumper oil - would there actually be any difference between this and alternate oils other than what's printed on the container? What do people recommend?

  2. Well i have a 75 z900 kawaka and i dont and wouldnt run synthetic oil in that from what ive been told older bikes like the thicker oils,i did put syntetic oil in it once and found engine noise increased
  3. With older engines, i think heavier oil is used so it stays on the journals and sliding surfaces more effectively. I think a semi synthetic 10W40 or 15W50 would be OK. I have no idea what difference the BelRay thumper oil would have to normal oil. I've also seen V twin oil about. Anybody know more?
  4. My bike seems happiest on Castrol 4T Motorcycle oil. It's a non-synthetic. It costs a little more than plain rock juice, but I seem to need to replace less of it between changes.

    My understanding is that synthetic oils do have different operating characteristics, and were not around when my bike was designed. I've heard stories of owners of older bikes discovering new oil leaks when changing to synthetic oil.
  5. My 77' Z650 seems to like Castrol GTX, the original stuff specified for it.
    There have been discussions about the newer rated oils (SH SJ) not containing much in the way of scuff additives(zinc mainly), due to the disappearance of cam in block engines.

    Regards, Andrew.
  6. Being an older engine, just about any mineral is fine. At the time the engine was made, synth oils were "thin on the ground" (except with Pommie-bikes, then you could wade in it :LOL: :LOL: ).
    The Valvoline Gold 20-50 is fine (6liters 15bux, Kmart special atm)

    Full synth can stuff clutch-plates, mate with a '96 Dominator did that (essentially the same motor as yours).