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Thread: Semi-Synthetic Oil in a new RT?

  1. #1
    TourNut
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    Semi-Synthetic Oil in a new RT?

    I am hearing people saying no full Synthetic oil in a BMW until 6-12K miles, just dino oil. Would it be OK or does anyone have experience in using just Semi-synthetic ?
    I am hoping the engine (700 miles) would still break-in the cylinders properly because of the dino oil but be a little better with the synthetic extra to protect the other engine mechanicals better?

  2. #2
    rglassma
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    Quote Originally Posted by TourNut View Post
    I am hearing people saying no full Synthetic oil in a BMW until 6-12K miles, just dino oil. Would it be OK or does anyone have experience in using just Semi-synthetic ?
    I am hoping the engine (700 miles) would still break-in the cylinders properly because of the dino oil but be a little better with the synthetic extra to protect the other engine mechanicals better?
    As per factory recommendation, use the viscosity recommended. I will only use dino oil in my RT... If it is good enough for BMW, it is good enough for me.

    Had seal leakage problems on my LT when I went to Amsoil syn.. No problems with dino oil on RT.. BMW says 6K oil changes with dino, Castrol 4T at PepBoys is 13.00 a gallon. No really cost savings going to syn or blend..

    Use dino oil for at least 6K if you must switch. My local dealers her in CO recommend 18K before switching to syn...

  3. #3
    Registered User westhautianplen's Avatar
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    Synthetic Oil ---

    Quote Originally Posted by TourNut View Post
    I am hearing people saying no full Synthetic oil in a BMW until 6-12K miles, just dino oil. Would it be OK or does anyone have experience in using just Semi-synthetic ?
    I am hoping the engine (700 miles) would still break-in the cylinders properly because of the dino oil but be a little better with the synthetic extra to protect the other engine mechanicals better?
    TourNut,
    If you are in the mood to read, do a search for postings on Synthetic oil. I think it said there were 19 pages of threads. I had the same question a few weeks ago right before my 12K service. Hope this helps.
    Plen Smith
    07 R1200RT

  4. #4
    Registered User Rinty's Avatar
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    break in oil

    Rinty

  5. #5
    Registered User
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    Also..........

    Here is a thread I started a while back on that very question. It might save you some time getting the answer you want. If you visit here often, you will see that an oil question will commonly end up as "The Great Oil Debate".

    Ultimately I have made the decision to run Dino for now. 7K on the clock.

    http://forums.bmwmoa.org/showthread.php?t=27979
    Jim Mock
    2008 R1200RT (The Blue Mule), R90/6 (New to me)
    MSF RiderCoach
    "Spring loaded to the riding position!"

  6. #6
    Honey Badger Semper_Fi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rglassma View Post
    As per factory recommendation, use the viscosity recommended. I will only use dino oil in my RT... If it is good enough for BMW, it is good enough for me.
    ...
    +1 Sticking with BMW recommendation, and to boot will use the OEM filter.
    2011 R1200 GSA Smoke Grey Metallic Matt
    2009 G450X White
    IBA #35651
    Rogue Moderator

  7. #7
    Unless you want a flat out warranty denial for an 8K engine run the FACTORY oil and filter until such time as you deem the warranty not important or it has expired.
    Jason
    Give a hand. http://www.akitas.org

  8. #8
    Rally Rat
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    All Multigrade oils are semi synthetic

    The viscosity improver is a synthetic oil. The Semi-Synthetic is mostly so they can charge more for the oil, there is not a requirement that a specific percentage of the oil must be synthetic to get the label. One could "assume" a semi-synthetic" oil has a higher percentage of synthetic than regular multiviscosity oil, and maybe it does, or not, it is a crap shoot.

    Company A synthetic might be mostly one type of base oil, while company B uses another type of base oils, and different additive packages. Maybe one synthetic base will allow break in and another will not. How will you know which is which.
    Just don't obsess over it. Use a motorcycle specific oil in the correct grade, that is not labeled full synthetic, with the correct API rating nd it will work. If you break the engine in like they say, with larger throttle openings at moderate RPM to load the rings, you should get a ring seal.

    There also seems to be confusion about the bypass valve in the filter. Only with the pressure drop across the element exceeds the value will this bypass valve open. It is not directly related to the oil pressure of the engine. Unless the filter is plugged with something, the only time the bypass should open is when the oil is cold and thick, and the engine is revved. Normally a filter for oil in the 20W-50 range has a higher filter bypass rating than one for 5W30. Looking at specification, the popular M1-102 filter has about a 12 PSI range bypass, and the Mann or BMW filter is about 20 some PSI. The only time this would really be significant is in winter when you ride off like you stole it with a cold engine. Even in bypass, most oil is going to be filtered, only some oil will bypass the filter. If the filter is really plugged more will bypass, which is not going to happen if you are maintaining the bike.

    Some people seem to assume all the oil in the sump is really dirty. It is not, it is filtered all the time. Only any additional particles introduced into the oil while the oil is cold could possibly get past the bypass. It really is a pretty failsafe system. With a good air filter, and good oil filter, and not worn out oil, there is very little particles in the oil ever.

    My $.02

    Rod

  9. #9
    TourNut
    Guest
    Thanks for all the replies, I have decided to just buy the best "non-synthetic" BMW oil the dealer is selling, which is the same they put in at the 600 mile service, and their filters. That way, I should have no worries, the price - I'll just have to "suck it up and forget it" When I get up to 12-15K miles, I'll re-evaluate and maybe then can use the Synthetic Rotella - T diesel oil my GoldWing and Shadow thrive on.

  10. #10
    Registered User MLS2GO's Avatar
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    Have your oil tested

    I did at my 6000 mile oil change on my 07 R1200RT. I use BMW Dino Oil and it was in great shape and would have been good for at least another 1500 miles according to Blackstone Labs. The additives were a 7 and only need to be a 1. I use synthetic in my HD Ultra Classic because of how much cooler it runs with it. No heat problems on the BMW so I use Dino, especially after getting it tested. Unless you get it tested you will never know.
    Bob Rippy
    IBA #451
    Tour of Honor Missouri State Sponsor
    14 R1200RT 11 R1200RT

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by rglassma View Post
    As per factory recommendation, use the viscosity recommended. I will only use dino oil in my RT... If it is good enough for BMW, it is good enough for me.

    Had seal leakage problems on my LT when I went to Amsoil syn.. No problems with dino oil on RT.. BMW says 6K oil changes with dino, Castrol 4T at PepBoys is 13.00 a gallon. No really cost savings going to syn or blend..

    Use dino oil for at least 6K if you must switch. My local dealers her in CO recommend 18K before switching to syn...
    I don't understand. The manufacturers of most premium vehicles put synthetic in them form the get go. What's so special about BMW motorcycle cylinders? A lot of other brand bikes and autos use plated cylinders. Most put the synthetic in because it holds up better under heat. Better fuel economy plus tighter emission standards equate to leaner mixtures and higher cylinder head temps. For years, surging and bad shifting on oilheads was attributed to rider error. Time has shown that it was spline failures and TBS setup. It's easy to pass off high oil consumption on the customers choice of motor oil. There's even been a theory floated that incorrect oil viscosity could contribute to final drive failure. In general dino oil is less costly than syn. What about a certain Milwalkee motorcycle manufacturer that ships bikes with dino and recommends the switch to syn at the 600 mile service. Oil as a profit center on new vehicles. There's a novel concept.
    robert

  12. #12
    2011 R1200RT ka5ysy's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Freebie legal advise

    Since the issue has come up locally, and is of interest to many people here goes a freebie (ouch!):

    DEALERSHIP/MANUFACTURER WEENIE SAYS: "you have to use a specific manufacturers brand of product in order to maintain the validity of your warranty" or "You cannot do your own work" or "You must use a specific oil/lube/part or your warranty is void".

    It is a violation of Federal Law to require a consumer to use a specific brand or type of product unless that product is provided FREE OF CHARGE by the dealer or manufacturer.

    The claim is usually made by a dealership service center that any other brand of product, but what they are selling, will "void the warranty", with the statement or implication that only the original equipment brand of product may be used.

    Such statements are blatantly false. If the consumer asks for that statement in writing, he will not receive it. Nevertheless, the consumer may feel uneasy about using replacement parts that are not original equipment. With the large number of do-it-yourselfers who prefer to install many of their own service and maintenance parts, such as oil and filters, this misleading claim IS A FLAT LIE.

    Under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, 15 U.S.C. SS 2301-2312 (1982), and general principles of the Federal Trade Commission Act, a manufacturer may not require the use of any brand of part unless the manufacturer provides the item FREE OF CHARGE under the terms of the warranty.

    So if you are told that only the original equipment part will not void the warranty, you should ask that the part be supplied free of charge. If you are charged for the part, the manufacturer or dealership will be violating the terms of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. This applies to any consumer product, not just cars and trucks or motorcycles in our case.

    This applies to parts, oils or lube of any kind, etc.


    And I can make some good legal fees ! (More Toys!)


    Engines have no way to know whether you are using petrochemical oil or full synthetic.

    Full synthetic has been used for years in turbine engines because it has a quality that dinosaur oil cannot match: full synthetic will not coke if overheated. In other words is takes high temperatures much better than dino juice. Practical example- in automotive use, one of the most common failures of turbocharged engines is having to replace the turbocharger due to bearing failures. Why? Because drivers will run at high speeds spooling up the turbo for long periods of time then pull off the road and shut down the engine without a cooldown period and to let the turbos spool down from very high rpm's. Without the engine running, oil flow through the bearing stops and the oil in the bearing cooks and then forms coke or carbon which is very abrasive and eats the bearings up over time, leading to the failure. This is why you see aftermarket oil circulation pumps that keep the oil flowing for a time after an engine shutdown to allow the bearings to cool and the turbo to spool down to a stop with lubrication.

    Air cooled engines are perfect platforms for use of synthetic for these reasons.

    The only real reason the not use full synthetic anytime in an engine is during the run-in period because you would usually be dumping the run-in oil several times in the first few thousand miles to get rid of metal particles. Using synthetic is a very expensive way to do a run-in.

  13. #13
    TourNut
    Guest
    Something I noticed at my local G.R. Michigan dealer, he had some sort of oil comparison posted of Mobil 1 oil analysis and it almost sounded like the dealer was promoting use of it , based on the analysis , after a long bike trip to Alaska.
    But the mechanic and others there were saying to only use the dino oil until 12-15K miles because of the cylinder break-in deal. Anyway , seemed surprising about them promoting Mobil 1 !

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