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Old 08-12-2016, 09:46 AM   #1
Lance Workman
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Default new engine using oil

My 1930 roadster deluxe had an rebuilt engine with 19 miles on it when I bought it several months ago. The previous owner knew very little about
the engine work done on the engine because when he bought the car that
owner had just died and his widow was living in a different state. No info
on the engine is now available. I have about 300 miles on the car now.
I changed the oil at about 250 miles. It originally had straight 30 weight
oil in it. I replaced it with Mobil 1 10w40.
Now the car seems to use more oil. After driving about an hour the oil level on the dipstick is about 3/8th of an inch lower than when I started.
The car seems to run fine and there isn't any smoke in the exhaust. I have noticed though that there is always some oil on the side of the engine near the dipstick area of the car when I return from driving it. Originally there were a few oil drips beneath the car under the oil drain bolt but that was taken care off with a oil drain bolt gasket.
Shortly after I purchased the car a Model A owner had came to my place to show me how to start and drive the car. He indicated that the engine was
in extremely good shape and everything was "spot on" reference the timing
and carb adjustment.
The car has only overheated one time and only for a very short time. I pulled over and let it cool down. I changed the oil in it and added some anti freeze 50/50 to it and now it seems to run fine except for the oil usage.
Any ideas why it is using this amount of oil or is this common for the A's.
Thanks
Lance
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Old 08-12-2016, 09:55 AM   #2
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: new engine using oil

The oil WILL show lower, just after a drive. As it sits overnight, it will raise. It's best to run it halfway between "F" & "L". Mist from the oil cap is quite NORMAL, put a sock over it, a BLACK one, & change it every 500 miles.
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Old 08-12-2016, 10:03 AM   #3
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Bill is spot on. Right after a drive the dip tray is full, the inside of the engine is coated and the valve chamber is full. Let it drain back down and check.
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Old 08-12-2016, 10:13 AM   #4
Lance Workman
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Thank you for the quick replies. I did check the oil level after it sat overnight and it still was that much lower. HOWEVER -- I had previously filled the oil up to the bottom of the "F" on the dipstick. I'll try the black
sock and fill the oil half way as suggested.
Great forum site for the Model A owner - I really appreciate your help.
Lance
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Old 08-12-2016, 10:26 AM   #5
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Default Re: new engine using oil

You will have less leakage and oil burning with a conventional motor oil. A Model A is not like a modern engine, it does not have things like valve seals or sophisticated piston ring technology. Switch to a decent brand of conventional detergent motor oil, with the grade appropriate for the weather conditions.

The main advantage of synthetic oil is the ability to use it for longer periods between oil changes - in a modern engine with a filtration system. Your Model A engine needs frequent oil changes because it has no filter. As such there really is no advantage to using synthetic oil in your Model A.
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Old 08-12-2016, 10:30 AM   #6
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Using synthetic oil is ok in an A. I run synthetic and change it often (not worried about the cost)That being said losing 3/8th on the stick in 1 hour is quite significant....
Synthetic oil burns clear out the tailpipe so I wonder if you switch to a non synthetic it may turn into a crop duster... You can also look for oil deposits on the plugs...
Oil out the breather is sometimes signs of excessive blowby from ring issues
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Old 08-12-2016, 10:45 AM   #7
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Why a black sock ???? Would a green sock work ??
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Old 08-12-2016, 10:49 AM   #8
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Default Re: new engine using oil

I would run conventional, modern oil. I use 20-50. I recommend doing the following to seat the rings, oil on the side of the engine indicates a ring problem. Now would be a good time to re-torque the head nuts. Procedure: 1- Warm the engine by driving it gently for a few miles. 2- in high gear, accelerate using full throttle from 20 mph to 40 mph. 3- slow back down to 20 slowly (don't back off the throttle completely) 4- do this 10 times in reasonably quick succession. This should completely seat the rings and solve the problem. Good luck!
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Old 08-12-2016, 10:52 AM   #9
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Default Re: new engine using oil

I think with only 250 miles it might have been too soon to put a synthetic oil in it. If it's pushing oil out of the breather then the rings are not doing there job,there not seated yet. Just change the oil back to a non-synthetic and put some miles on it,let the rings seat and enjoy.
I you want to put a synthetic oil in it after everything is seated and broken in well it won't hurt anything, just more $ when you change the oil
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:35 AM   #10
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Default Re: new engine using oil

We're talking about a car with 300 miles on it! The rings are not even seated yet, Ya got some wearin' to do! I agree, there's no advantage to synthetic oil in an A, just money wasted. I use Shell Rotella 15/40, which is avaiiable from Tractor Supply Co. (TSC) and seems to be oil of choice with many model A owners. The very first thing I would do with a new engine is retorque the head. Ya can't torque the head on a Mod. A too many times! The second thing is to put a scouring pad in the breather cap! A heckuva a lot of oil goes out the breather. This will hold some of it back! NOT STEEL WOOL which is too fine. One of those coarse Scouring pads! The Next thing is to look at the rear of the engine while it's running (Under the car) and see if there is any dripping at or around the rear main bearing. There is a tube about 4 inches long, that if not installed, or installed improperly can cause much oil loss (Don't ask me how I know) This is inside the Oil pan and you can't see it, only lots of oil dripping. Good Luck with it!
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:36 AM   #11
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Default Re: new engine using oil

There was local guy here in Denver with an engine that was using oil and with oil coming out breather pipe on a fresh rebuilt engine.

He had switched to Mobil 1 on first oil change. It was still using oil at 1500 or 2000 miles.

Finally someone suggested using 30 weight NON synthetic oil and running it as is.

It got better as the miles went up over 2000.

Some where around 500 miles later at 2500 to 3000 total miles the problems went away.

The consensus here on FB was that the Mobil 1 was "too slippery" and did not allow the rings to seat. Might have been the type of rings they used or the cross hatch in bores ... who knows.

My engine uses oil if filled up to F mark on stick.

After it gets 1/2 way between the F and "E" ... the usage slows down and is much less.

"For what it is worth"

Last edited by Benson; 08-12-2016 at 01:28 PM. Reason: Corrections and additions
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:47 AM   #12
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Default Re: new engine using oil

As mentioned in previous posts, it could be the rings not seating yet. You mentioned you changed the oil at about 250 miles but no mention of the total you've driven so far. You may have to drive it for the first 500 miles after a rebuild occasionally varying the speed to try and help the rings seat well.

Is it possible the end of the dipstick that wraps around is broken or not seating in the engine block with the main portion of the dipstick? It should sit snug in the block to avoid any leakage.
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:48 AM   #13
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Brierley View Post
I would run conventional, modern oil. I use 20-50. I recommend doing the following to seat the rings, oil on the side of the engine indicates a ring problem. Now would be a good time to re-torque the head nuts. Procedure: 1- Warm the engine by driving it gently for a few miles. 2- in high gear, accelerate using full throttle from 20 mph to 40 mph. 3- slow back down to 20 slowly (don't back off the throttle completely) 4- do this 10 times in reasonably quick succession. This should completely seat the rings and solve the problem. Good luck!
plus 1
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:50 AM   #14
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Default Re: new engine using oil

In MHOP never use synthetic oil to break in a engine.
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:53 AM   #15
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Default Re: new engine using oil

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Originally Posted by George Miller View Post
In MHOP never use synthetic oil to break in a engine.
unless it's a new modern car from the factory which many have synthetic at delivery

Last edited by Mitch//pa; 08-13-2016 at 04:37 AM.
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Old 08-12-2016, 03:38 PM   #16
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by BILL WILLIAMSON View Post
The oil WILL show lower, just after a drive. As it sits overnight, it will raise. It's best to run it halfway between "F" & "L". Mist from the oil cap is quite NORMAL, put a sock over it, a BLACK one, & change it every 500 miles.
Bill W.
I had same problem of oil around the dip stick and engine side when the engine was first rebuilt. Use the black sock idea to keep oil from messing up everything. I understand it is ring blow by until the rings are "seated" in. Now I have about 2500 mile on it and have no problem-got rid of the black sock.

Yes it could be a green sock. But black tends to not show the oil as bad!
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Old 08-12-2016, 08:18 PM   #17
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Can someone explain how a new car can have factory filled synthetic and the rings seat in just fine, but when a Model A gets honed it will need dino oil to first seat in???? Crosshatch pattern different maybe? Explain to me why the rings wont ever seat in to a Model A block, but it will to a new cast iron block?
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Old 08-12-2016, 08:47 PM   #18
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Default Re: new engine using oil

I use Shell Rotella 15/40 for Diesel engines (for diesels because it has zinc in it). It's recommended by shell for older gasoline engines requiring zinc additive.
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Old 08-12-2016, 08:55 PM   #19
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Good question! Maybe you should start thread? I feel the new thread would go many pages!
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Old 08-12-2016, 09:09 PM   #20
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Default Re: new engine using oil

1. Torque the head (50#-FT) with the engine completely cold using the proper tightening sequence. Do this before each time you run the engine. At least 10 times. This is to allow the head gasket to completely compress and the head studs to stretch.
2. Do not use synthetic oil use a straight 40W oil that has an anti wear Zinc compound additive. 40W Valvoline V1 racing oil is what I use. It has the Zn additive. You can buy the Zn additive and add it to a 40W oil of your choice.
3. Do not use more than 4-1/2 quarts. The oilpan always has at least 1/2 quart remaining after the oil is removed. If you put 5 quarts in it will get pushed out somewhere usually the rear main bearing area.
4. Do not ever ever ever put anything in the fill tube and make certain your fill cap sits slightly above the tube.
5. Install a 160 degree thermostat in the hose above the pump and secure it with a clamp.oil pan
6. Lightly tighten the screws holding oil pan, the return tube, and the valve cover.

Let the engine break in. It is not like a modern engine. It will take a minimum of 1000 miles before you will see it begin to have more spunk. Keep your speed at 40 and occasionally go faster and bring it back. If you boil over that is an indication that everything is very tight or maybe your radiator is not working properly.
Good success.
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:22 PM   #21
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill in NJ View Post
Why a black sock ???? Would a green sock work ??
Not with the oil used in the Model A. The carbon in the oil from combustion combines the the carbon used in the dye on the sock allowing better adherence
to the sock and filtering of the carbon allowing cleaner oil to drip back into the engine.

A green sock will just get dirty.
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:24 PM   #22
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Default Re: new engine using oil

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Originally Posted by Dino's A View Post
Can someone explain how a new car can have factory filled synthetic and the rings seat in just fine, but when a Model A gets honed it will need dino oil to first seat in???? Crosshatch pattern different maybe? Explain to me why the rings wont ever seat in to a Model A block, but it will to a new cast iron block?
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Old 08-13-2016, 02:02 AM   #23
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dino's A View Post
Can someone explain how a new car can have factory filled synthetic and the rings seat in just fine, but when a Model A gets honed it will need dino oil to first seat in???? Crosshatch pattern different maybe? Explain to me why the rings wont ever seat in to a Model A block, but it will to a new cast iron block?
Mostly due to the design of the ring pack,nice thin rings for starters
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Old 08-13-2016, 04:31 AM   #24
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dino's A View Post
Can someone explain how a new car can have factory filled synthetic and the rings seat in just fine, but when a Model A gets honed it will need dino oil to first seat in???? Crosshatch pattern different maybe? Explain to me why the rings wont ever seat in to a Model A block, but it will to a new cast iron block?
I figured this would re- surface. That's why I brought it up in post #15..
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Old 08-13-2016, 08:54 AM   #25
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Default Re: new engine using oil

The only reason is I brought that issue up is because even service techs (and I use that term loosely) contradict themselves with this issue. The tech at the Dodge dealership was telling me that I should of left dino oil in my Challenger for about 5,000 miles so the rings could seat in.

I walked him over to the Dodge Challenger SRT's they had on the lot and told him that these cars come factory filled with synthetic so he better get them over to the service bays immediatley and get all their synthetic oil out. I just smiled at him and said good bye.

The only reason I don't run synthetic oils in my old cars is that I have been told by engine builders is that it could leak out of areas with older style gaskets such as timing covers, oil pans, side covers and the such. I change my oils regularly so I didn't consider doing it.

Maybe that is just another wives tale also.
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Old 08-13-2016, 09:41 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lance Workman View Post
My 1930 roadster deluxe had an rebuilt engine with 19 miles on it when I bought it several months ago. The previous owner knew very little about
the engine work done on the engine because when he bought the car that
owner had just died and his widow was living in a different state. No info
on the engine is now available. I have about 300 miles on the car now.
I changed the oil at about 250 miles. It originally had straight 30 weight
oil in it. I replaced it with Mobil 1 10w40.
Now the car seems to use more oil. After driving about an hour the oil level on the dipstick is about 3/8th of an inch lower than when I started.
The car seems to run fine and there isn't any smoke in the exhaust. I have noticed though that there is always some oil on the side of the engine near the dipstick area of the car when I return from driving it. Originally there were a few oil drips beneath the car under the oil drain bolt but that was taken care off with a oil drain bolt gasket.
Shortly after I purchased the car a Model A owner had came to my place to show me how to start and drive the car. He indicated that the engine was
in extremely good shape and everything was "spot on" reference the timing
and carb adjustment.
The car has only overheated one time and only for a very short time. I pulled over and let it cool down. I changed the oil in it and added some anti freeze 50/50 to it and now it seems to run fine except for the oil usage.
Any ideas why it is using this amount of oil or is this common for the A's.
Thanks
Lance
Overheated once and you changed to synthetic oil. Sounds like you solved your overheating :-) plus one for synthetic oils! Keep your oil level between L&F, the oil usage should stabilize IMHO
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Old 08-13-2016, 10:26 AM   #27
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Default Re: new engine using oil

Synthetic oils, according to a Shell Oil engineer I talked to, tend to shrink oil seals slightly. Using Shell synthetic oil in my 1949 airplane, the engine weeped oil everywhere. Going back to pure petroleum base oil I now have a dry engine.
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