Proper Oil - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 12:11 AM Thread Starter
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Proper Oil

Thought I had better post the results of a bad choice of oil. Not knowing any better I thought I would be doing my VN better by using a synthetic oil. The sales person also said it would be good for my VN as well. So I proudly purchased the oil, went home and changed oil & filter. Rode a few times and started to notice some clutch slippage. Thought it was quite strange as I had not had one moments problem with this bike. Only had 5900 miles. So I went to the group and post the problem on the VN mail group. Got almost immediate response that I had put the wrong oil in it. First off I used 10W/30 instead of the 10W/40 as manufacturer recommended. By using the 10W/30 it was discovered it is "Energy Savings" as well. That's not good in our VN's. Wet clutches do not like the friction reducers found in the "Energy Savings" oils. So I dumped the oil, changed filters and added 10W/40 that was specifically made for wet clutch applications. I used a Valvoline product. Went out and rode about 160 miles varying speed and rpm. Noticed more soild clutch engagement within the first 4 -5 blocks. I was lucky this time and owe it to the great VN750 group. Don't make my mistake. All synthetics are not better for the VN750. Read the contents carefully first and save yourself some serious heartburn.
Ride safe!!

Jim Bowers
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 12:17 AM
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Thanks for this post. I will avoid the synthetic oils. Didn't realize about the wet clutches requiring a bit more friction than the synthetics provide.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 12:24 AM
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Good post. When in doubt check the manual or ask this group. The salesperson may be legitimately trying to help you and just not know any better, or worse, he or she may be trying to upsell you to the more expensive synthetic without concern for how it will affect your bike.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 12:31 AM Thread Starter
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I truly think the salesperson was trying to make the higher $$ sales and really didn't know what is or is not good for wet clutch bikes. Thank God we have this group to make life better for us and our VN's

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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 05:51 AM
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Non-synthetic 10w30 Energy Conserving oil will do the same thing. We want to stay away from "Energy Conserving" oils, and it will say on the bottle, if it is. I think all or most 10w30 is EC. On the back of the oil bottle is a round symbol with some lettering in it, and the bottom half of this circle will say energy conserving in it if it is.

That's why you see so many people use/suggest 10w40, 15w40 etc.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 08:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rubyrick View Post
I will avoid the synthetic oils.
I think the problem was with with the 10w-30 Energy Conserving not the synthetic... A good bit of folks here including myself use synthetic oils...
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 09:50 AM
 
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I have been using synthetic oil for years. The lighter weight oils are usually the energy conserving ones. I use a 15w50. It does not say energy conserving. That being said I have used different oils for different bikes. I used John Deere torque guard supreme 30w in my BMW airhead. Thats what it ran best on, got over 100k miles on that bike and as far as I know it's still running. My old aircooled bikes get the 20w50 synthetic because they run hotter. My VN gets 15w40 Shell Rotella heavy duty oil. Also not energy conserving. I just started using the Shell oil because the oil that the dealer put in was horrible. I guess it was a cost item. The Shell oil improved things right away. I guess oil is a matter of opinion but the oil that we have today is light years better than the oil my cb350f was introduced on. Also our drain intervals have increased. My 350 needed its oil changed every 1500 miles and it held four quarts. The V-Strom is every 7500 miles (I usually change it sooner) as recommended by the manuf.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 10:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by instructorpilot View Post
My VN gets 15w40 Shell Rotella heavy duty oil. Also not energy conserving. I just started using the Shell oil because the oil that the dealer put in was horrible. I guess it was a cost item. The Shell oil improved things right away.
I think you will be happy with the Shell Rotella T 15w-40... It ran great and kept my 426 Hemi alive well forever... When it was rebuilt for a 1/8 mi dragster the builder stated that it was in the best shape and the cleanest one he had ever torn down... I can confim that it had been abused and mistreated except for the lubrication...
Have a good one...Old Dog...

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MicroTach +, Higher wider H-bars, GPS Mt., Mustach bar Hwy. pegs...
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 10:48 AM
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I agree that it wasn't the synthetic oil, but the energy conserving oil that caused troubles for you.
I've used syth in my bike since I got it. Over 30k miles and never any slip in the clutch.
Same with my dirtbikes.


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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2008, 01:43 PM
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I went to the Shell Rotella T 15w40 on my bike (used it in semi-trucks all the time), and it has been running great! Never any clutch problems. I only have 7k Miles, though.

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