ATF for primary oil

Discussion in 'Oil' started by skydude426, Oct 21, 2010.

  1. skydude426

    skydude426 Member

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    First, let me say I have found this forum to be very interesting and informative. There is a lot of helpful information here based on years of experience. I haven't ridden for years and recently bought an Ultra Classic so my wife and I could both ride in comfort. I've wanted a bike for years but held out until I could afford a Harley. That said, I've found the topic of oil interesting because of all the different opinions. I've decided to use Mobil-1 in the engine because I use thier products in my car and van and I am happy with the performance and the availability. I'm going to use Spectro GL-1 in the transmission because of all the possative posts I've read. I'm still up in the air about the primary oil and I'm interested to know how many people use ATF and has anyone had bad results with it? I'm probably going to go with Spectro, Bel Ray or HD+ but I'd like to learn more about the results of ATF in the primary and if anyone has had problems from using it. It sounds like many aftermarket clutch packages spec it.
     
  2. skydude426

    skydude426 Member

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    The Tank,
    Thanks, I read that one earlier and a few others that make good pionts as why not to use it, but I havn't read a post from anyone that has had trouble from using it. I'm not saying I'm going to try it, I'm just interested in hearing about what experiences people have had with it. Particularly any bad experiences as I haven't read any yet to show thats its a bad primary oil choice.
     
  3. skydude426

    skydude426 Member

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    I read through those threads and see there was some heated dedate over the subject but there really wasn't much said based on experience. There are examples from cars and trucks but not much else. I wonder how few people acctually use ATF in thier primary's. Probably not many. I hope I don't dig up an old argument with this thread. I was just wondering what real experiences people have had with it, not the theory and guess work. I'm still trying to decide between Spectro, Bel Ray and HD+. I like the fact that Spectro GL-1 is green and Bel Ray primmary oil is red so I can tell the fluids apart in case of a leak.
     
  4. Iceman24

    Iceman24 Well-Known Member

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    Agree w/Smitty - why take a chance w/your $pendy $coot over a few dollars. Think of it as giving your bike a nice bottle of wine vs. $2 bottle of Ripple. Don't recommend ATF in primary - meant for auto tranny vs. bike clutch system.
     
  5. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

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    I have never thought about using atf in my primary but then i have never thought about using formula+ in an automatic gearbox however when i was in the military we did use engine oil in the automatic gearbox in the tracked armoured vehicles
    so if engine oil is good for an automatic geatbox then why does atf exist as there is no need for it therefore the question of atf in the primary would never have been asked in the first place
    now im getting confused :34:
     
  6. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

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    As i remember the tracked armourd vehicles had automatic gearboxes with gear range selection torque convertors with torque multiplication in 1st 2nd and reverse the forward gear ranges with torque multiplication were used in x country applications but for road user gear range 3 - 6 was used however the wheeled armoured vehicles used a pre select gearbox with fluid coupling to transmit the drive from engine to gearbox but oil in the gearboxes torque converters and fluid couplings were all the same as the engine oil but there may have been better oils for the specific task but for ease of resupply of mobile units if 1 oil can be used for all applications it is easier to manage

    Brian
     
  7. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Expert Member

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    IMO ATF is way too light of an oil, it is a Hydraulic fluid for building pressure in Automatic trannys and can be used in Hydraulic jacks and cylinders. Have tp agree with Smitty here it has too many additives HD does not need:s
     
  8. skydude426

    skydude426 Member

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    I agree with whats being said here and it makes sense to use a product thats made for the primary case. This is prooving my suspision that not many people use or have used ATF in thier primarys because there are no actual experience replies. ATF in the primary sounds like a big myth to me and I doubt many have done it. As sick as this sounds I love a good oil thread. It can make for a lot of interesting reading. I'm in (EDIT) Afghanistan and need something for entertainment.

    Please read this...
    [note]
    A Friendly Reminder - Harley Davidson Community
    [/note]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 22, 2010
  9. D.Bradfield

    D.Bradfield Active Member Contributor

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    If you have ever been inside an automatic transmission you would find the same stuff that you would if you took the primary cover off your motorcycle. Allison has made a tried and true automatic transmission for years that gets put in anything from school buses to 18 wheelers(HEAVY STUFF). Would you like to guess what they use to lubricate them?(ATF) All transaxles have chains and sprockets with friction plate clutches, just like the chain driven clutch assembly in a Harley. Personally I would not use ATF, just some food for thought.
     
  10. IR Rick

    IR Rick Active Member

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    I just put a new 9plat dis Barnnet clutch Kit in, they say to Ues ATF
    I tried some Red Line oil but was unable to get it -N- and was not able Shift with out grear grine switch to ATF every thing good, I have put over 5600 miles on the bike scents i put the clutch kit in pull a 700Lbs trailer most of the time
    No adjustments needed yet:D