What Engine Oil to use? - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old Nov 30th, 2005, 10:31 pm Thread Starter
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What Engine Oil to use?

Well,
It is near the time when I need the first oil/filter change. I recken I need 20W/50. that much I got it figure out.
However, I need some help on the grade.
I read that you are not suppose to use SJ oil, but SH, and SG is OK. What happen when the bottle reads it pass all the test for SJ, SH, SG ...is that OK?
I was at Costco and was planning to buy a case of Castrol 20w/50 that said that.

any help would be appreciated.

Plastics
99 K1200RS silver/blue
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old Nov 30th, 2005, 11:39 pm
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plastics
Well,
What happen when the bottle reads it pass all the test for SJ, SH, SG ...is that OK?
Nothing happens. That's OK.
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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old Dec 1st, 2005, 1:11 am
 
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Cool oil

If you are able to get to your BMW dealer (or order it online), just use the BMW oil. Sure, it's not cheap, but you plunked down the cash for a beemer so don't skimp on the oil. Again, bike-specific oils are different than car oils. Additives, etc. Castrol is good oil, but I wouldn't use it in my beloved KRS. 20W50 is ok for most of the year, until it gets really cold. If you're using synth, the BMW 15W50 is good for the whole year.
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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old Dec 1st, 2005, 1:50 am
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Can't go wrong with BMW oil. That covers all the bases. However, what's the important factor with which oil you use in a motorcycle with respect to what's available generally for cars? The clutch. Most motorcycles use a wet clutch, and using oils with friction modifiers can affect the clutch if you have a wet clutch. The motor is, well, a 4 cycle piston engine. No different than a car. Your .sig says 1999 K1200RS. Dry clutch, no problem. First service? If you're talking about a K1200S or K1200R, yeah, better pay attention to the service qualities of the oil. Brick motor with low miles? Go for 10w-40 for the winter, or even 5w-30. Why? The worst time for wear is when starting up the engine, as the oil has sucumbed to gravity, and flowed away. The lighter the weight, the easier it is to pump to all the nooks and crannies that need oil. 5w-30 starts off as 5w oil, and the additives bring it to 30w as it gets hot. If you can run 5w-30 and not use oil in the summer, stick with that year 'round.

That's my nickels worth.



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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old Dec 1st, 2005, 4:25 am
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Razel, you posted more or less what I thought and do. I agree with using the wide range oil, but if I experienced big temperature extremes I might look at oils for Summer /Winter. Since many of us may lay up bikes for the winter one oil type would probably still be ok. Although I read a lot about synth. and non synth oils. My older K has got about 30K miles on it and I now I feed it semi synth. Oil consumption at the sight glass still seems low and hasn't changed.

It's difficult to discuss merits of oils unless you strip a lot of motors down, know what to look for or have components fail that point towards oil. I tend to take a pragmatic view that changing my oil more frequently than recommended, makes the oil brand pretty agnostic unless there are exceptional reasons - say long hard track triding or race tuning. I did notice that some oils are sold 'for older engines' and tend to be the mineral non-synth types maybe with less additives, but by 'older' they mean't pre-1960. There's also an issue with some oil additives damaging catalysts, but I don't think this applies to modern engine formulations.



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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old Dec 1st, 2005, 8:39 am
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Asked several BMW shops and all have said that nothing more than dyno is needed in the KGT.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old Dec 1st, 2005, 10:29 am
 
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What Engine Oil

The cost of oil when compared to your investment is too small to even calculate, I have used only BMW oil in my 88K75s, 1996K1200rs, and now my 2003K1200rs. I am at one with the dealer on this one. I do however us Gold Spectro in my Triumphs and Ducati. A very good BMW mechanic from way back when indicated that he seldom saw oil leaks on BMW's that used the BMW's natural oil. He could not make the same statement with synthetics.
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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old Dec 1st, 2005, 10:49 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plastics
Well,
It is near the time when I need the first oil/filter change. I recken I need 20W/50. that much I got it figure out.
However, I need some help on the grade.
I read that you are not suppose to use SJ oil, but SH, and SG is OK. What happen when the bottle reads it pass all the test for SJ, SH, SG ...is that OK?
I was at Costco and was planning to buy a case of Castrol 20w/50 that said that.

any help would be appreciated.

Plastics
99 K1200RS silver/blue
I've been running Castrol 20/50 in my K-bikes since 1985. Every since Syntec-Blend came out (late 80's ?) I've used it. (I used ful synthetic for a while, but contrary to published reports, it weeps out when nothing else does.) No problems with the Castrol, much to the dismay of the SJ only crowd. If it's a concern while you are under warranty, you can always just buy the BMW oil.

'85 K100RS - 19k (two valves adjusted)
'87 K75s - 101k (one valve adjusted)
'95 R1100RSL - 16k (all the valves, all the time)
'94 K1100RS - 76k (zero valve adjusted)
'02 K1200RS - 50k + (one valve adjusted)
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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old Dec 1st, 2005, 11:04 am
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I used dino oil for 10,000 miles and switched to full synthetic. Here are some brands I have used, all 20W/50 viscosity. BMW (dino), Golden Spectro (synth blend), Mobil 1 V-Twin (full synth), Castrol Syntec (full synth), Valvoline SynPower (full synth). Can't go wrong with BMW oil, but any major brand will suffice. I worry more about the viscosity I use than the brand. My bike uses no oil between changes, and is not leaking or seeping oil anywhere.

Last edited by rickd; Dec 1st, 2005 at 11:31 am.
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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old Dec 1st, 2005, 11:23 am
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leaking

Quote:
Originally Posted by FrisbeeTiger
A very good BMW mechanic from way back when indicated that he seldom saw oil leaks on BMW's that used the BMW's natural oil. He could not make the same statement with synthetics.
Very interesting comment. Leads me to believe that syn will penetrate all those little areas IN the engine better. But that does not mean that dyno will also not do the job just fine. That comment fits in line with others I have heard.

I use syn now on my Buell and noticed a marked diff in foaming. The syn does not foam as much as my Castrol dyno did. Not getting any leaks from either at this time. So, Moble syn will be my Buell and BMW dyno or any motorcycle 20/50 will be my bike oil. I say MC oil because it has been mentioned many times that there is more Zinc(I think it was) in MC oil. A protective factor against wear.
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