<VV> Which OIL? Re: Doc opinion

Burkhard, James F james.f.burkhard at delphi.com
Mon May 18 09:56:00 EDT 2015

Many high end cars come from the factory with synthetic oil these days.  I think the old shade tree mechanic adage of not using synthetic oil on a new build went out long long ago.

In a highly loaded application like a mountain-climbing UltraVan, I would try to stack the deck in my favor as much as possible: oil cooler, oil temperature sensor, and certainly synthetic oil.

Good luck & Keep us posted...

Jim Burkhard

-----Original Message-----
From: frankcb at aol.com [mailto:frankcb at aol.com]
Sent: Sunday, May 17, 2015 1:17 PM
To: bgilbert at gilberts-bc.ca; corvairjack at yahoo.com; virtualvairs at corvair.org
Subject: Re: Which OIL? Re: <VV> Doc opinion

Bob et al.
     Reminds me of the time many years ago when I came out of the store I was shopping at, hopped into "Joe Cool" (1966 Corvair with A/C) and started the engine.  It ran fine but the red light on the dash told me I wasn't getting any battery charging so I shut down and prepared to replace the fan belt with the spare I carried.  Surprisingly I found that the fan belt was perfectly attached to all the pulleys so I restarted the engine.  Now the fanbelt was STATIONARY as was the fan itself and the alternator pulley!  Closely examining the driving pulley I was amazed to see the INNER section was turning just fine, but the OUTER section was completely stopped.  The rubber anti-vibration layer between the inner and outer had completely failed!!   How to get the car home so I could repair it???  Fortunately, the trip was only 7 miles and I had installed a head temp. gauge so I simply drove about 1-1/2 miles until the gauge went up to 400 deg.F. then stopped and let the engine cool down and repeated the short trip interval about 4 times.  What saved me was a BIG battery AND the synthetic engine oil I had in the car.  After arriving home, I dropped the back end of the engine a few inches and changed the vibration damper pulley out for a good one and the car ran just fine for many more years.
     "Joe Cool" (named by my little boy after the Snoopy character) had his cooling system adjusted so he blew 38 deg.F. air temp out of the cooling duct (as measured by a digital thermometer).  It was so cold when I put my fingers by the duct outlet for a few seconds they would HURT from the low temp.  Try doing that with a "modern" car!!
     Thanks for the memories!
Frank Burkhard
Boonton, NJ

-----Original Message-----
From: Bob <bgilbert at gilberts-bc.ca>
To: frankcb <frankcb at aol.com>; corvairjack <corvairjack at yahoo.com>; virtualvairs <virtualvairs at corvair.org>
Sent: Sun, May 17, 2015 12:07 pm
Subject: RE: Which OIL?  Re: <VV> Doc opinion

Hi Frank,
I only had about 500 miles on the motor at the time and I was still using dyno oil. I was planning to switch to synthetic after that very trip!


-----Original Message-----
From: frankcb at aol.com
[mailto:frankcb at aol.com]
Sent: May 16, 2015 5:46 PM
bgilbert at gilberts-bc.ca; corvairjack at yahoo.com; virtualvairs at corvair.org
Subject: Which OIL? Re: <VV> Doc opinion

Bob, were
you using a SYNTHETIC engine oil at the time the damage occurred?  Usually they're good up to 450 deg.F. which is quite a bit higher than conventional oils.
     Frank Burkhard
     Boonton, NJ

From: Bob via VirtualVairs <virtualvairs at corvair.org>
'JackPinard' <corvairjack at yahoo.com>; virtualvairs <virtualvairs at corvair.org>
Sent: Sat, May 16, 2015 8:34 pm
Subject: Re: <VV>
Doc opinion

And on a somewhat related note, I seriously damaged a freshly built 3.1 in my UltraVan about 18 months ago. I did all the required deflashing, etc.
made a huge mistake in not installing additional cooling power in the form of an external oil cooler. No problem for short trips around home but on the first long trip, up a multi-mile very steep hill in the Rockies with a full load of vacation supplies I cooked the oil and damaged all 6 pistons and cylinders beyond repair. An expensive lesson and with 20:20 hindsight totally preventable.
So cooling is VERY important when you stress Corvair engines beyond their normal "in-car" mode.
PS I am
it as we speak and adding a fan driven external oil cooler!

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