what oil should i use in my seagull?

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headdownarseup
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what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby headdownarseup » Sun Sep 03, 2017 2:21 pm

There seems to be a lot of debate over 2stroke oils at the moment, so i thought i'd try and save everyone's sanity a bit and maybe explain things in a much simpler and easier way for anyone to understand.

From various documentation it's understood that many of these older designed engines didn't actually have a specific type of oil that could be mixed with fuel to provide adequate lubrication of the moving parts. It's generally understood the train of thought at that time was to use a 30 weight car engine oil. CAR ENGINE OIL i hear you say? Apparently so... but remember that's all that was available in those days, and so a lot of that "old thinking" has stuck and keeps on being repeated again and again. That's fine.
BUT these days is it still the right thing to do for our older and perhaps quite tired and worn engines today? There are 2 schools of thought here.

1 If it was good enough back then, surely it will still be good enough today. Maybe... but things have progressed hugely from the 1930's especially when it comes to the humble oil we use in pretty much any engine today.

2 Gaining experience from the old ways, and constantly looking forward to the future with science and a little bit of chemistry on its side, the modern variants of oil these days are a very far cry from the old days.


So, what's the difference between a mineral oil and modern semi synthetic and fully synthetic oil. What are the benefits to using this stuff. What can it do for my engine. Will it cause damage to my older engine?

I'm certainly not an expert here, but i have had a fair bit of first hand experience from looking at engine failures in a LOT of different engine types over the years. To help explain things a bit further i'm going to refer you to these guys for a minute. Bear with me here as most of the information he talks about is more relative to 4stroke engines, but there are a few bits that directly relate to what is relevant here.

http://www.carbibles.com/engineoil_bible_pg2.html

If you're still with me after that, well done so far.

Now then, the issue of using car engine oil in our pre-war seagulls.
Again, the camp is divided here, and another link although they talk about lawn mower engines (not too dissimilar to a seagull in many respects)

https://www.smokstak.com/forum/showthread.php?t=23278


Interesting point there in the last post.
The more oil you use in the fuel mix, you actually lean out the fuel getting through to where it's needed.
More oil in the mix isn't always the best course of action here, perhaps more relevant to our older seagull engines.

10:1 or maybe even 8:1 back in the good old days was considered to be acceptable, but remember there wasn't any specific grade of oil for 2strokes back then. Sounds a bit odd, but it's true.
Nowadays there's a whole plethora to choose from. Some of it quite confusing too if you read through the last link, especially to some of you older gents out there that refuse to step into the 21st century. (i'm trying to be kind here)
That's fine too, i'm not pushing anyone here. Just trying to re-educate is all.

These guys are getting a bit closer to the REAL QUESTION here. Is it safe for me to use a modern oil in my old seagull?

http://forums.iboats.com/forum/engine-r ... er-engines

Less is more... (oil that is)

Might help to understand why there's different grades of oil for different purposes, AND how different oil manufacturers achieve their different grades. Most of this is relevant to 4strokes though, but it's the chemistry behind it that's relevant to smaller engines and 2strokes in particular here
http://www.upmpg.com/tech_articles/motoroil_viscosity/


If you're still with me after this, well done.
It's a lot to take in i know :roll:




THE SHORT ANSWER:
In the good 'ol days when oil was simply refined a bit, cleaned a bit, poured into metal containers and called "motor oil", we took it for granted that the manufacturers had already done some research to make sure it would be compatible with different engine types with the current thinking and technology of the day.
Back then, if it worked well enough it was thought of as "acceptable".
With the benefit of hindsight we can argue that after several years of typical useage these engines might easily have some high levels of wear inside them, probably due to the type of oil used in the mix and maybe even questionable maintenance regimes. All of which will take its toll on an older designed engine with simpler designed bearings/bushes. Case in point with the dear old seagull engine.

Nowadays things have moved on. MASSIVELY. It's left that old skool thinking in the dust by comparison.
Chemistry and lab technicians take this stuff very seriously, finding new ways to improve "old thinking" and subsequently blend newer oils and ingredients to be even more competitive (or should that be more sympathetic) with older designs of engine.

For those of you that insist on using mineral oil in their seagull, great. Carry on. It's what they were designed to use in the first place.

For me though,there is a better choice. I consider conservation/preservation a bigger issue. That is to say preserving older crankshafts and reciprocating parts by better forms of lubrication. (not tree hugging :roll: )Modern oils often out-perform older oils. It's that simple. Older engines will happily run with modern equivalent oils even when their originally designed specs clearly stated otherwise. It's all in the chemistry behind the label on that bottle of oil.


As always the camp will be divided, i understand that. Some of you will never be swayed. I understand that too.


Jon

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby Keith.P » Sun Sep 03, 2017 2:45 pm

I have sitting in the shed two bottles of oil, one bottle cost me £3.99 and the other bottle cost me £8.29 for the same size bottle, they are both modern two stroke oils, is one better than the other, or are they both the same as they are modern oils.
I would happily use the first bottle at 10:1, but most are not happy to use the second bottle at 10:1, because it works out expensive and so they use less because it's (modern two stroke oil).

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby pat777 » Sun Sep 03, 2017 3:18 pm

Good work Jon, about time we go to the bottom of the oil conundrum, it's the one topic on here that there always seems to be so much disagreement on.

Which oil brand are you currently using in your seagulls, is it the same brands for all of your gulls including the really old ones?

This is the oil that I am currently using. All of my Seagulls are pre 1978 and are run on 10:1 Petrol:Oil mix. Charles has mentioned Fully synthetic tcw3 and Semi synthetic tcw3 and tcw2 in the previous discussion.

I think my tcw3 is semi synthetic, but I cannot see it written anywhere on it. This stuff is very expensive over €10 for less than a litre.

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby headdownarseup » Sun Sep 03, 2017 4:57 pm

I'm currently using ROCK MP3 (sport), a semi-synthetic marine outboard oil. I buy it in 5 litre cans which works out expensive at approx. £40-50 depending on where you buy it, but in a seagull engine that probably gets used for 10-12 hours every year it goes a long way. Pretty much all the modern semi-synths do a very similar job to the older mineral oils with the added benefit of the newfangled shear stabilisers and detergents that are blended into them. Essentially these oils still retain all the properties that you older guys seek with mineral oils, but with modern blends of additives to improve (sometimes enhance) the general performance of an older design of engine.
I use this stuff in ALL of my gulls including the really old ones, and they positively thrive on the stuff. No issues whatsoever despite all the hype currently.

As always it's the old ways of thinking that constantly crop up in these discussions. I have no problems with that. But it's still an old and outdated way of thinking with many of these older designed engines. All of the important research and development work has already been done by the folks in white lab coats. They're the boffins after all, not me.

This might help to explain and settle the nerves of you older guys out there.

Not particularly relevant to old seagull engines but explains the differences in viscosity between the 2 types
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tYkg0oDUXs8

and maybe the other side to the argument (i like to keep this debate balanced)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CMD9YWSmtPU

Proof from some of the bigger players here which might sway some folks decisions
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RpwrlWJMd40

Some of the things this guy talks about is a bit more relevant to seagulls. Boundary layer lubrication, more relevant to "high zinc content" oils often found in your older "motor oil" from way back when. Modern oils combat this with sexy additives that work really well.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LpbVDGT40Rg


I know, i know. This is mostly relevant to 4stroke engines etc. but the technology that's hidden behind that little label on that bottle of oil you want to use is where you should all be looking.


Jon

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby headdownarseup » Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:29 pm

And another side to the argument.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xILCJc2o_L8


Perhaps more relevant to that "boundary layer" lubrication i mentioned earlier. This is perhaps quite relevant to some of you older guys wanting to use a sae30 weight motor oil in your 2stroke fuel mix.

Newer oils combat the same wear rates with sexy additives that really do work.


Jon

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby headdownarseup » Sun Sep 03, 2017 6:09 pm

A bit more on what the labels actually mean.

This is maybe what Charles was worried about here.

https://www.rymax-lubricants.com/news/a ... -it-works/

Complicated isn't it when you're deciding which oil to use in your seagull.

If anyone were in any doubt i'd always say stick with what you know and use a mineral based oil. It's cheaper and more readily available from almost everywhere which is very appealing to some of us but is it still providing all the basic needs that a seagull requires. Well of course it does, it always has right from the start.

Nowadays there is a shift towards cleaner running with extended service intervals which will appeal to some of the more ecologically sensitive of you out there. I understand that, but this topic was more about trying to awaken the older generations to a new way of thinking.

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby headdownarseup » Sun Sep 03, 2017 6:32 pm

A bit more on what TCW3 means

https://www.nmma.org/certification/oil/tc-w3


The oil i use in all of my gulls is listed here as well.
Rock MP3 sport. (not that the labelling "sport" has anything to do with performance here)

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby headdownarseup » Sun Sep 03, 2017 6:37 pm

and a bit more from the same people

https://www.nmma.org/assets/cabinets/Ca ... W3%206.pdf


All of this stuff is very thoroughly tested by the professionals in white lab coats.

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby pat777 » Sun Sep 03, 2017 7:14 pm

Thanks Jon,

Good to know what others are using in their gulls.

Link to oil that Jon uses. (with some technical information)

https://www.seaware.co.uk/mp3-sport-2-s ... d-oil.html

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby headdownarseup » Sun Sep 03, 2017 7:48 pm

A bit more about different types of lubrication and their specific tasks.
Some of which directly applies to our dear old gull engines. (boundary layer)

http://www.brighthubengineering.com/man ... brication/


Jon

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby Charles uk » Sun Sep 03, 2017 7:48 pm

When I was working for Vanderval's, I was one of those men in a white coat, they had the Jaguar V 12 on the test beds during that time, that was how long ago it was, I can still remember the faces of the test bed guys walking into the canteen at lunch time, to tell us another V12 had thrown it's toys out of the pram.

I think your missing the point of the bearing clearances, Jon, somewhere I have a note book with all the crank journals & main bearings I measured on the coolie hat JM motors, when we were looking at replacing the tired main bearings & the most cost effective way to do it, lower viscosity oils might not be the best way to pamper them, I'll post a picture when I can locate my notes.
Make it idiot proof and someone will make a better idiot.

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby headdownarseup » Sun Sep 03, 2017 9:12 pm

If you're still confused over any of this here's a simpler answer.

If you've got a tired old seagull of questionable provenance and dubious service history (that'll be pretty much most seagulls nowadays then) it's fair to assume that your engine has at some point in its life had a dose of mineral oil through it. Perfect. Carry on and use this oil all the time you can find it in the shops. If you're not bothered by the smoke levels that will come from using this oil, again, carry on using it.
Your seagull was designed with this old fashioned oil in mind. Old technology and old thinking. Safe and sound. Nothing wrong with that at all.


But, is it still the right thing to be doing to an old engine like a seagull? This is where we seem to be divided.


On the other side of the argument, those of you that are more aware of what's going on in the environment and want to safely continue to use your old seagull, or any old machinery for that matter safe in the knowledge it will still survive well into its very old age, you can't go too far wrong by using a modern equivalent oil manufactured by a reputable company. All the hard work has been done for you by the boffins.

What you have to consider here is that you're mixing a quantity of oil directly into a liquid fuel. Any lubricating properties that the oil once had has now been diluted down 8 times,10 times or 25 times according to the fuel mix with your old seagull engine. You're now expecting that oil to do exactly the same job it would do in a 4stroke engine, relying entirely on its ability to be able to "cling" to the metal parts without being washed away from the bearing surfaces from the incoming charge of fuel /air from the next cycle of the engine.That in itself is a hard enough job for any oil to do. 2stroke engines (particularly those with high end bearings and fancy parts) are running almost to the point of seizure a lot of the time, a lot less in the case of the seagull as they're far less stressed than their fancier brothers and sisters and don't rev anywhere near as high as some top end engines out there. This is where all the research and development has taken place over the years with oils and additives. Old skool thinking was fairly sound back then with what was available at that time, but there was always going to be drawbacks when it came to lubrication and wear of different materials used in an engine. Seagulls date from an era when a lot of this technology wasn't understood as well as it is today. Old technology and old thinking. They are what they are, along with all their quirkiness and this is what we are fond of.
Long live the seagull. (with a helping hand from modern technology)

Bottom line here. If your old gull engine is too far gone,worn out and fit for the scrap yard, using a modern oil isn't suddenly going to give it the kiss of life again. If its that bad to begin with it's probably long overdue for a rebuild . I use modern oils simply because i know how much better this oil is over its older counterparts. Long term conservation and prevention is what it's all about. Simple as that. Cost doesn't come into it. Oil works out much cheaper in the long run compared to an expensive rebuild. Why skimp on oil? It's not worth it these days.


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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby Charles uk » Sun Sep 03, 2017 9:40 pm

Jon we've explained on a few occasions how the oil gets to where it's needed & do it's lubrication duties, perhaps a search on that might help you.
Make it idiot proof and someone will make a better idiot.

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby JERSEYMAN » Sun Sep 03, 2017 10:44 pm

I have a couple of old Ducati's, a 1977 900 Darmah and a 1978 900ss. OE engine oil spec is 50 weight, it's been well documented that they blow big ends if they are run on anything else. 40 year old engine spec....old school oil even if it does have a modern brand name.

I find it hard to believe that a low viscosity oil running at 25:1 would work well on a worn (not worn out) 50 year old motor.

Horses for Courses....

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Re: what oil should i use in my seagull?

Postby Nudge » Mon Sep 04, 2017 7:19 am

I find it hard to believe that a low viscosity oil running at 25:1 would work well on a worn (not worn out) 50 year old motor.

Horses for Courses....


Im with you on this one.... To the point where I run my engines that should be running on 25:1 on 16:1 just to be sure :roll:
Is it better to over think, than not think at all?


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