Oil rip off or not? - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-06-2010, 03:33 AM Thread Starter
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Oil rip off or not?

So here's the deal. Like many of you, I use a "blended" oil. Part synthetic and part mineral mainly because full synthetic oil here in the Philippines is so expensive!! One litre of Mobil 1 is around 20 bucks US!!!
I found out that I'm not alone cause the biggest selling oil in bike shops in the States is a semi or blended oil from what I have read.

The other day, while changing the oil in one of my bikes, I started thinking how much synthetic oil is in this "blend"? Is it 50%? Is it 25%? Is it 10%?

Is there any law that says how much the blend must be or is this just another rip off so we will buy the product in good faith?

I have asked this question to probably 100 people and get no response other than a dumb look. I even wrote to the Guru's at Cycle World and still no response!!

For my own peace of mind, I would really like to know the answer.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-06-2010, 03:44 AM
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how many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie pop??? same answer man, the world will never know...
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-06-2010, 05:08 AM
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Al, scroll down and read my post from another forum titled "A Very Good Oil Read--IMHO", you may even go back to the full Dino oil to save a bit of cash, I fully believe this guy knows his oil and gives an honest report...
Have a good one...Old Dog...

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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-06-2010, 10:01 AM
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"Blends" can contain any percentage of synthetic oil the maker feels works. So it can be anywhere from 10% to ( likely only) 50%.

Here in the states, regular oil is the hottest seller amoung bikers, not synthetic or blended.

If I were you I would buy the cheaper full dino oil and just change it every 3000 miles. There is no real advantage to using synthetic oil unless you live where it is horribly hot, or are hard on your bikes motor.

I ride my bike (a Yamaha FJR1300) like I stole it and only use Rottella NON-synthetic oil.

Save yourself some money dude.

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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-06-2010, 03:24 PM
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Got to agree with KM again here. The 2 most important things about oil is using the right weight, and changing it often. If it meets the warranty requirements of new car manufacturers, it is safe to use. Synthetic oil will "last" longer than non synthetic oil, but it gets contaminated just as fast, so the fact that it does not break down as fast is really a moot point. It needs to be changed when it gets contaminated.

IMO, and this is my opinion, there are only 2 different weights of oil that should be used in any street motorcycle, 10w40, and 20w50. In the Philippines, I would definitely recommend 20w50. I would recommend 10w40 only in places where the temperature rarely gets above 32 degrees F.


As for changing it, the simple answer is as often as you can. Every 3,000 miles would be the max. Every 2,000 miles would be better, and every 1,000 miles would be great.

I live in AZ, which has the most extreme heat in the U.S., I use Mobile 1 synthetic 20w50 motorcycle specific oil in the Vulcan, and change it every 3,000 miles. That is a compromise. I use the synthetic only because of the extreme heat (115-120 degrees F), and because my bike tends to run very hot in city traffic in the summer. Any little bit of added protection will help. And even though it is a LOT cheaper here, I still can't afford to change it every 1,000 miles. If I lived in a place with more reasonable temperatures, I would use 20w50 Castrol GTX car oil, and change it every 1,000 miles. Jerry.

I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.


1997 Vulcan 750, purchased about a week ago
2006 Sportster 1200 Low
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 01:48 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VN750Rider/Jerry View Post
Got to agree with KM again here. The 2 most important things about oil is using the right weight, and changing it often. If it meets the warranty requirements of new car manufacturers, it is safe to use. Synthetic oil will "last" longer than non synthetic oil, but it gets contaminated just as fast, so the fact that it does not break down as fast is really a moot point. It needs to be changed when it gets contaminated.

IMO, and this is my opinion, there are only 2 different weights of oil that should be used in any street motorcycle, 10w40, and 20w50. In the Philippines, I would definitely recommend 20w50. I would recommend 10w40 only in places where the temperature rarely gets above 32 degrees F.


As for changing it, the simple answer is as often as you can. Every 3,000 miles would be the max. Every 2,000 miles would be better, and every 1,000 miles would be great.

I live in AZ, which has the most extreme heat in the U.S., I use Mobile 1 synthetic 20w50 motorcycle specific oil in the Vulcan, and change it every 3,000 miles. That is a compromise. I use the synthetic only because of the extreme heat (115-120 degrees F), and because my bike tends to run very hot in city traffic in the summer. Any little bit of added protection will help. And even though it is a LOT cheaper here, I still can't afford to change it every 1,000 miles. If I lived in a place with more reasonable temperatures, I would use 20w50 Castrol GTX car oil, and change it every 1,000 miles. Jerry.
Very quick story about Castrol GTX (the most overlooked oil in motorcycling).
In 1999 I built a 650 Yamaha twin to ride the mile flat track at Sacramento California. The thing was a tank so I cut everything that I could find to get it somewhat lighter. I buddy of mine talked me into some oil that he was running in his racers.
I rode two events before the mile to get the thing sorted out and won both of them. The only problem was that I had to adjust the valves after every ride.
Before the mile, I replaced all the rockers and their shafts because they were shot.
Changed back to Castrol GTX which is the stuff I ran in the 500's that I also rode.
I rode one practice on the mile (8 laps) and a heat race (8 laps)and the main event (10). You are doing really close to 120mph on the straights. The clutch was terrible grabby so when I got home I took the clutch cover off to repair the clutch and almost has a heart attack! When I was throwing stuff away to become lighter, I threw the OIL PUMP away!!!! I thought it was a tach drive!!!!
26 miles wide open with NO OIL PUMP!!!!
Do you think Castro GTX works?
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 02:08 AM
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wow... great story... I have heard lots of good stuff about Castro GTX, run it in my jeep, bike, and would run it in my truck if i still had it.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 07:57 AM
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Castrol, hmmm I think it must be good stuff, mom used to give it to me as a kid back in the 40s, sure made me run fast for that old cold outhouse and the Sears catalog...lol...
Really though, I had a bad cold weather experience with it (auto) and don't use it anymore...
Have a good one...Old Dog...

Southern Central Tennessee.......
Now on the Dark Side......
Girl's Bike 09 Sporty xl 1200 Custom...33k + & clickin......
Sportster Owner/Rider since age 72...lol... Rider since Simplex...???
09-xl1200 "C" Vivid Black, Cast wheels w/19" Frt., SE-Stage 1+, X14iEDs...
MicroTach +, Higher wider H-bars, GPS Mt., Mustach bar Hwy. pegs...
Viking Shock cutout Saddlebags, Rear Mt. Signal Lt. Kit, Fork Brace...
RoadKing Air Shocks, Mustang Seat, Progressive Fork Springs...
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 11:42 AM
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I use the gtx high mileage in my cavalier, run it for about 5k or longer. Use the 20/50 in the bikes, I don't run it as long in the bike. I think that it is good oil.

Old Dog, I want to hear more details on your bad experience with the oil.

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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 01:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by niterider View Post
Old Dog, I want to hear more details on your bad experience with the oil.
Really probably had more to do with the weight choice and cold weather than anything...
I bought a new 83 Toyota Supra and was told to use the Castrol 20w-50 in it, and that winter on a very cold morning for here in southern Tenn. I went out to crank it and let it warm a bit before the 75 mi. trip to work, well it started and just as I started to get out and go back into the house I caught the oil pressure guage on its way back down to zero, I shut it off and waited a minute or so and restarted, pressure came up to normal for a few seconds and then fell back to zero, same one more time and I didn't go to work that day...
It had to be the pump pulling a hole in the oil in the pan, or it was not making it back down from the valve train, I went back to the oil I had always used, Texaco Havoline 10w-40 and never had another problem, as I said it was more the thick weigh to blame, I think...
So 2 things I haven't bought since, Castrol and Toyotas, that thing was a piece of crap, they didn't put enough paint on it to hold the metal togather, but they don't care, Toyotas are moving pretty fast now as I understand...lol...
Have a good one...Old Dog...

Southern Central Tennessee.......
Now on the Dark Side......
Girl's Bike 09 Sporty xl 1200 Custom...33k + & clickin......
Sportster Owner/Rider since age 72...lol... Rider since Simplex...???
09-xl1200 "C" Vivid Black, Cast wheels w/19" Frt., SE-Stage 1+, X14iEDs...
MicroTach +, Higher wider H-bars, GPS Mt., Mustach bar Hwy. pegs...
Viking Shock cutout Saddlebags, Rear Mt. Signal Lt. Kit, Fork Brace...
RoadKing Air Shocks, Mustang Seat, Progressive Fork Springs...
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