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Old 03-20-2017, 06:36 AM
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Zinc based oil

I used zinc based oil in the startup of my Chevy build to break in the flat tappet cam. After break in, do I need to continue using the zinc based oil for all my oil changes? Thanks for your advice.

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Old 03-20-2017, 07:39 AM
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In 1986, my 1962 Chevrolet 327/300 was started and has run for more than 60k miles on Valvoline 10w-30 All Season from Wal Mart. It has a GM "151" L79 camshaft and Pioneer RV943x valve springs, that were set up with 130 lb seat at 1.700" and 304 lb open pressure at 1.253" (.447" valve lift) and coil bind is 1.15". Those springs will lose about 10% load in the first 500 miles. No machine work necessary.

Your engine may be different.

Last edited by MouseFink; 03-20-2017 at 08:02 AM.
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Old 03-20-2017, 07:42 AM
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A lot of people use rotella from shell its big truck oil and some of them still have the zinc in them and are not too much money like break in oil. can save you a bit on the oil changes.
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Old 03-20-2017, 07:56 AM
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I really wish people would stop recommending the diesel oils. The EPA has cracked down on diesel oils, new diesels have equipment that is sensitive to the amount of ZDDP in the oils, just like our gasoline hotrod engines.

Your best bet, is to use a proven product that is DESIGNED for the purpose. Saving a dollar or 2 a quart sounds awesome untill your engine craps the bed, and the cam manufacturer says "what oil did you use?"

To me, its not worth it.

On a personal note, Ive never been sold by the 'dump in this concentrate' method. Better than nothing? For sure! But, even if you mix it in 2 quarts of the oil during your change; how long does it have to run before its mixed homogeneously throughout the entire 5+ quarts? What about extended downtime? If I park my car for a month, will it settle out and need to be re-mixed into the oil?

For those reasons, I recommend either Brad Penn or (Joe Gibbs) Driven oils, that are designed to do the job.

Just my two cents. Maybe CStraub will chime in; as a custom cam designer, he probably sees more of this in a week, than I will in a lifetime.
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Old 03-20-2017, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AutoGear View Post
I really wish people would stop recommending the diesel oils. The EPA has cracked down on diesel oils, new diesels have equipment that is sensitive to the amount of ZDDP in the oils, just like our gasoline hotrod engines.

Your best bet, is to use a proven product that is DESIGNED for the purpose. Saving a dollar or 2 a quart sounds awesome untill your engine craps the bed, and the cam manufacturer says "what oil did you use?"

To me, its not worth it.

On a personal note, Ive never been sold by the 'dump in this concentrate' method. Better than nothing? For sure! But, even if you mix it in 2 quarts of the oil during your change; how long does it have to run before its mixed homogeneously throughout the entire 5+ quarts? What about extended downtime? If I park my car for a month, will it settle out and need to be re-mixed into the oil?

For those reasons, I recommend either Brad Penn or (Joe Gibbs) Driven oils, that are designed to do the job.

Just my two cents. Maybe CStraub will chime in; as a custom cam designer, he probably sees more of this in a week, than I will in a lifetime.
I agree. Diesel oils belong in Diesels and only some of those need to go into diesels. Ford has stated with the latest formula from the API that your warranty is voided if you use the new oil. Here is the tech bulletin:


CK-4 Diesel Update
Recently Diesel engine oils changed from the decade old CJ-4 formulation to the new CK-4 formulation. While intended to be an upgrade, the new CK-4 formulation has been met with resistance and even an outright “do not use” warning from Ford Motor Co.
The new CK-4 specification went into effect in December of 2016, and just before the launch of this new specification, Ford Motor Company issued a service bulletin stating that Ford 6.7 Litre diesel engines should not use the new CK-4 oil. In fact, Ford issued a new oil specification closely aligned with the previous CJ-4 specification and called for the use CJ-4 oils meeting the new Ford specification for their 6.7 Litre diesel engines.
The reason for all of this? Ford identified wear issues as the reason for abandoning the new CK-4 oil specification.
What is the underlying issue with the CK-4 oil? Previous API diesel oil specifications, like the decade old CJ-4 specification, had to pass the ASTM Sequence IIIG valve train wear and oxidation test. This is no longer true of the new CK-4 specification. The Sequence IIIG test measures flat tappet cam and lifter wear as well as other parameters. The significance to both Ford and other users of diesel engine oils is directly tied to the absence of the Sequence IIIG test.
Diesel engine oils have historically contained higher levels of the anti-wear additive ZDDP. With more oil marketers wishing to supply “universal” oils that meet both API SN requirements for gasoline engines as well as API CK-4 requirements for diesel engines, the levels of ZDDP have dropped in some CK-4 oils. Without the Sequence IIIG flat tappet cam wear test, it appears some of these lower ZDDP diesel oils are causing increased wear in Diesel engines. This should be a word of caution for all users of diesel engine oil – regardless if you own a 6.7 Ford or not.
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Old 03-20-2017, 08:38 AM
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I am curious about EDM lifter oiling. Flat tappet lifters so equipped have a oil hole drilled in the face of the lifter, offset to the lifter centerline. Those may or may not be beneficial if the valve spring pressure is more than 130 lb / 320 lb open. Crower offers mechanical lifters with the optional EDM oil hole. Those look like the ones I will use with a solid lifter cam the next time the opportunity arises.

I wonder how long it would take for the little EDM hole to stop up with debris in the oil or stop up due to normal wear.

Last edited by MouseFink; 03-20-2017 at 08:44 AM.
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Old 03-20-2017, 08:48 AM
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I had a tappet engineer in 2006 tell me that at that time if the stars were aligned properly and you crossed your fingers that at flat tapped cam and lifter had the life expectancy of 10 to 15K miles before it failed. This was due to several factors.

I don't have anyone calling me with failed rollers wanting to go to flat tappet. I do have several a year with failed flat tappets now wanting to go roller.
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Old 03-20-2017, 09:38 AM
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As an engineer my self I want to see real facts....Not just one that are made up based on what the internet says.

Some issues I have are:

Can all the FT cams in existence currently from all forms of racing and street are doomed to fail in very short order? really? How do you explain the millions that haven't yet? How many FT cams fail because of improper set up or spring set up or other mechanical set up issues blamed on bad oils cause humans like having a reason to blame something on something else. How many FT cams are running around with no issues but never get mentioned?

If FT's are doomed and truck loads of bad cams are being returned for failure why hasn't the free market responded with ceasing production? Why hasn't the price or RC come WAY down with the flood of RC's because FT fail near every time?

Oil technology is changing rapidly. By the time news hits the market and it publicized the tech is already old in my opinion. Oil has always been a factor in engine life expectancy so I would have to assume it still is. If a cam failes because someone didn't use an oil proper for the design is that really the cams fault of user error instead?

I have a lot of other questions prolly without easy answers as well. I don't doubt RC's are superior in most ways except pricing but I thing it's a little narrow minded to say all FT cams are doomed from the start when the facts or production and profit support the FT still lives on. I'm just trying to fair and objectionable as some one that has ran both for years and the only failure I've had was because of poor manufacturing and tolerances.

Flame on...I can take it.


How many
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Old 03-20-2017, 09:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MouseFink View Post
I am curious about EDM lifter oiling. Flat tappet lifters so equipped have a oil hole drilled in the face of the lifter, offset to the lifter centerline. Those may or may not be beneficial if the valve spring pressure is more than 130 lb / 320 lb open. Crower offers mechanical lifters with the optional EDM oil hole. Those look like the ones I will use with a solid lifter cam the next time the opportunity arises.

I wonder how long it would take for the little EDM hole to stop up with debris in the oil or stop up due to normal wear.

Only works on solids. Yes it works, Ford did this on the original Indy engine just for this reason.


Probably half this problem is from misaligned lifter bores on GM blocks. They don't have to be off much to cause unusual lobe and tappet wear on flat tappet engines; where rollers are much more tolerant of these slight production misalignments of lifter center line to camshaft centerline.


Bogie
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MouseFink View Post
I am curious about EDM lifter oiling. Flat tappet lifters so equipped have a oil hole drilled in the face of the lifter, offset to the lifter centerline. Those may or may not be beneficial if the valve spring pressure is more than 130 lb / 320 lb open. Crower offers mechanical lifters with the optional EDM oil hole. Those look like the ones I will use with a solid lifter cam the next time the opportunity arises.

I wonder how long it would take for the little EDM hole to stop up with debris in the oil or stop up due to normal wear.
Mouse to me the longer lasting flat cam is one with better core.

To get one to survives break in Parkerized is a good bet. This covers the cam with heavy layer of additive so the cam has as much help as it can get with the coating that holds oil. Its not the best but on a good core its a good first step.

There are several other coatings and core upgrades that can help. Often its the cheapest flat hydraulic cams that go south 100 miles after install. Now i cant afford all the best but got a decent cam with options above that may help it last. They also say there rockwell checked of course i would assume this is needed on all cores but im sure its not done.

I got one of these for my latest build hoping it last with minimal zddp additives. Of course i will be trying all i can to make it last.

Assault Superior Torque Solid Camshaft SBC .562/.584 Lift Small Block Chevy | eBay

Im hoping the cam above will last with some strong enough springs to make it last and still hit its redline marks. I also got a couple of springs and scale to test there ratings and setups. Should be able to get the springs in the under 400 lbs range. Just hope thats enough to hit the 7200+ rpm redline.

To the OP

You just need to get the right rotella blend they make them for modern engines and they make them for older motors with the zddp in tacked. You have to figure hundreds of industrial equipment need the right oil. So it on the shelf some where. Not like the entire country has written off its tractors and 18 wheeler and all the farm equipment. Some of this stuff last for 40 years of hard service. Some has been operating for the last hundred years.

You can also get the comp and other manufacturers cam lube on ebay pretty cheap. it does mix with the oil quickly and embeds into the metal and stays there until its wiped away buy metal to metal contact.

I do agree the break in oil is the best bet. Jor gibbs and others are great stuff. But 100 dollar oil changes suck. If you can run it for the first 5K miles it should help the motor last with only minimal zddp in the future. It does help to keep the zddp level high enough to keep the cam alive.

Hope this helps.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:21 AM
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Zinc based oil

I sincerely thank all of you for your advice. That's why I love this site! I guess what I'm asking is do I need to continue using zinc based oil in my future oil changes.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Forty2door View Post
I sincerely thank all of you for your advice. That's why I love this site! I guess what I'm asking is do I need to continue using zinc based oil in my future oil changes.
I would use it for the first 5K miles then at least every 3 oil changes. But does not have to be the heavy break in type loaded with zddp just the normal oil blend that was commonly used for these motors.

I think the real answer is no if your cam has gone threw its break in and is working well it should be fine. But for safety sake i would suggest the best you can do to make it work.

It makes no since to use 15 dollar a quart oil on every oil change if that was the case a good roller would be cheaper than the flat cam in the long run.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:30 AM
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OProbably 80% of FT cam failures is due to excessive valve spring pressure.

I have never had a FT cam failure. I have always used FT camshafts that required valve springs with less than 125 lb seat / 320 lb open pressure. Chevy engineers recognized the problem as far back as 1962 and did not offer a valve springs for Chevrolet engines with more than 120 lb closed / 320 lb open pressure and the cars had a 50k mile drive line warranty. That includes the Chevrolet L88 engine option. Cam failures then were and still are due to "More's Law"

The reason is that Motor oils have less ZDDP today compared to 1960 -1970, when high performance engines with FT camshafts were offered to the public by automakers. The EPA forced automakers to eliminate the camshaft oil hole in the rod cap in 1972, which caused camshaft failures in 1973-1985. The EPA said the oil spray on the cam lobes and cylinder walls caused excessive pollution. Automakers reduced valve spring pressures on the FT camshafts but the final solution to the problem was roller camshafts.

Last edited by MouseFink; 03-20-2017 at 10:55 AM.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:50 AM
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Zinc based oil

Thanks HC. That's exactly what I was looking for.
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Old 03-20-2017, 11:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forty2door View Post
Thanks HC. That's exactly what I was looking for.
This is what I use and sell, this is basically the same as the old Kendall GT1 oil made before Conoco bought the Kendall brand name.

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/b...4-12/overview/
Brad Penn Grade 1 motor oil is desirable for their anti-wear additives, making them highly suitable for flat tappet camshaft engines. These high-quality race lubricants are 100 percent made in the USA for racers, engine builders, and enthusiasts. Brad Penn Grade 1 motor oils have a unique base oil that causes them to cling to your engine's parts, minimizing wear during high-torque, high-stress competition. They contain highly effective detergent and dispersant additives to keep your engine clean and running at the peak of performance. These motor oils are available in synthetic blends and straight grades. They are designed for the higher lubrication of competition engines with superior alcohol separation to ensure continual lubricating of the engine.
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