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Old 04-09-2010, 04:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default what type of engine oil for my 68?

i did a search and not much came up. i read in a few treads that 68 289's need 15-50 engine oil weight. is that correct? what engine oil do you recommend? thanks
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Old 04-09-2010, 10:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Depends alot on bearing clearances, oil pressure, climate, intended use. Most likely you will be just fine with a 10w-30 or 10w-40 if you live in a hotter climate. Some guys use the 15w-50 Mobil 1 synthetic oil because that weight of Mobil 1 is the only one that has the proper levels of zddp for flat tappet camshafts. Hard to beat good old Valvoline VR1 racing oil...its easy to find, fairly cheap and has the proper amounts of zddp for flat tappet camshafts. Brad Penn "green oil" is another good choice. You can also use a standard oil and use a zddp additive.
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Old 04-09-2010, 10:22 PM   #3 (permalink)
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X2 on Valvoline VR1. As stated, it's cheap, easy to find, and sufficient ZDDP.
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Old 04-09-2010, 11:10 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Does your owner's manual recommend 15W-50 or any other 50-weight oil? My guess is that the recommended viscosity for most of the USA was 10W-30 year-round and 20W-40 for hot summer conditions.

ACCCC recommends the use of Heavy Duty Engine Oils for flat tappet engines. HDEOs have similar levels of ZDDP as racing oils but have better detergent additives. If you really want to use a synthetic oil, I would recommend 0W-30 Chevron Delo 400 Synthetic or Esso XD-3 Extra. If you just want the anti-wear protection, just about any 15W-40 CI-4/SL HDEO will work fine.


ACCCC Engine Oil Article
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Old 04-10-2010, 11:29 AM   #5 (permalink)
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My 69 owners manual recommended 10w-30 for cooler climates and 10w-40 for hotter climates and summer months. Still a good general rule of thumb on these motors but can change if they have excessive wear.
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Old 04-10-2010, 03:59 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Mobil 1 15w-50 has been working fine for me in my '66 289, but I've only been using it for the last 10 years & 34,000 miles. No leaks & no measurable wear.

Z. Ray
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Old 04-10-2010, 05:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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It doesn't really matter what the owners manual said 42 years ago that's history! Too much has changed in motor oils since then. Use a 10W30 or 10w40 in any brand you like and you will be fine.
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Old 04-10-2010, 09:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I used to use 20w50 in summer on my old worn out 302, but now I use 10w30 in winter and 15w40 in summer on the newer motor.
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Old 04-10-2010, 09:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6t9mach1 View Post
My 69 owners manual recommended 10w-30 for cooler climates and 10w-40 for hotter climates and summer months. Still a good general rule of thumb on these motors but can change if they have excessive wear.
+1 Valvoline VR1 10w-30 for Winter months (I don't actually drive it much because of all the salt on the roads.) and I just bought a case of Summit 10w-40 Street & Strip racing oil for the Summer months. Both brands have the proper ZDDP levels for our flat tappet cams.
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Old 04-10-2010, 09:43 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AMR66 View Post
It doesn't really matter what the owners manual said 42 years ago that's history!
Ford designed their engines to operate in a particular oil viscosity range and SAE viscosities haven't changed since sixties. If SAE 30 or 10W-30 was specified, I think it would be safe to also use 0W-30 or 5W-30. If a 50-weight was never specified, the only thing you will get from using an excessively thick oil is less power and lower fuel economy. Potentially, too-thick oils can result in higher oil consumption in an engine with good rings. See BITOG - Re: Toyota TSB On Oil Use.

I agree that oils today are better than the ones available in 1968. Oil changes could potentially be lengthened, especially if a synthetic oil were used. However, a 40+ year-old PCV system might not keep dusty air out as well as a modern PCV system so there is an increased possibility wear from silica contamination with extended oil changes. I wouldn't extend the OCI very much without used oil analysis.
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:30 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AMR66 View Post
It doesn't really matter what the owners manual said 42 years ago that's history! Too much has changed in motor oils since then. Use a 10W30 or 10w40 in any brand you like and you will be fine.
I had my engine rebuilt about 10 years ago and the guy insisted that I stay with the original weight oils, 10W30 and never more than 10W40. After about 10,000 miles, I switched to 10W30 mobil-1 and ran with that for about 5 years. When I pulled the engine apart last summer it looked like a brand new engine. But last year I started adding a 1/2 bottle of ZDDPlus to each oil change because of the new zinc/phos. standards.

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Old 04-11-2010, 11:51 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I use Rotella T 15w-40. "its good $h!t" were the exact words of my engine builder who has been building everything from 3 cylinders to blown big blocks for about 45 years. Im takin his word for it!
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Old 04-11-2010, 03:58 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I use Rotella T 15w-40. "its good $h!t" were the exact words of my engine builder who has been building everything from 3 cylinders to blown big blocks for about 45 years. Im takin his word for it!
They changed the formula for Rotella T a couple of years ago...it no longer has the levels of zddp that are needed for flat tappet camshafts.
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Old 04-11-2010, 07:16 PM   #14 (permalink)
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From a BITOG Rotella VOA, Rotella T has about 975 ppm of phosphorus, which is the anti-wear component of ZDDP The latest CJ-4/SM HDEOs typically have 1000-1200 ppm of phosphorus, which is still plenty for flat tappet valve trains.

If you have an aggressive aftermarket valve train, you can instead use a 15W-40 CI-4/SL HDEO, which typically has 1300-1400 ppm of phosphorus. Using engine oils with more than 1400 ppm of phosphorus doesn't provide any more useful protection and leads to increased engine deposits.
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Old 04-12-2010, 09:40 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zray View Post
Mobil 1 15w-50 has been working fine for me in my '66 289, but I've only been using it for the last 10 years & 34,000 miles. No leaks & no measurable wear.

Z. Ray
+1. I had a sticky lifter and Mobil 1 took care of it. Also it resists oxidizing and sludging when sitting in a warm moist environment (like Houston).
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