car oil vs bike oil

Discussion in 'Softail Models' started by 09 deluxe, Apr 3, 2010.

  1. 09 deluxe

    09 deluxe Member

    I was reading one guys idea on changing oil for his harley softail and he mentioned that mobil 1 car oil is cheaper than mobil 1 V twin and the only difference between the two is that the car oil has a higher MOLYBDENUM

    He doesn't mention any grade so I am assuming 20w50. He goes on to state that since harley engines don't have a wet clutch in the engine the higher MOLYBDENUM content is better anyway. Is this right?

    any thoughts on this
  2. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    Although im not an expert on oil car oil will assume that operating temperature is strictly controlled by the cooling system via liquid and fan with thermostatic control
    air cooled motorcycle gets as hot as it gets the only thing to control the temperature is the air flowing over the engine
    id want an oil designed for the correct environment

  3. Rain

    Rain Member

    Don't do it till you get a lot more research done. I think Brian is right there. Air cooled motors and water cooled motors run at different temperatures. Air cooled running through a lot more heat ranges.I used to run "Aero Shell" in my shoveleads and panhead, and it worked great! It was meant for air cooled airplane engines. (Also readily available at little airports across the country!!!) That was in the 80's. Now days, there is so much great oil on the market. I wouldn't mess with trying to save a few bucks.
  4. glider

    glider Veteran Member

    Use an oil that is made for a V Twin air cooled engine. I want the very best in protection for the engine and not something that is "good enough'' Why not use the $1.50 a quart oil and save more?:s

    BUBBIE Well-Known Member

    OILS designated for autos are not usually 20/50 wt. oils and NOT designated to be used in a V-twin, AIR COOLED engine.... The EPA really has cut down on ADDITIVES that can be added in oils of today...

    The 20/50 is one of the LAST FEW weights of oil, allowed with the additives WE need to keep our bikes working and running good.

    The BRANDs of oils are many, ALL claiming to be the best....

    When oil is said to be FOR V-TWIN AIR COOLED, it is a lot different than an automotive oil....

    PREFERRED by MOST IS A FULL SYNTHETIC OIL...... and many choices are out there......

    REDLINE engine OIL I use: API SM/SL/SJ/SH/SG/CF this is the thing to look for on your oil container to SEE IF it complies for use...

    REDLINE 20/50 syn MY particular oil uses the BEST polyol ester basestock..
    IT IS RATED at a # 5

    Comparing Redline to another GOOD syn engine oil: Mobil 1 V-twin 20/50
    IT IS RATED as a # 4

    But don't let that sell mobil 1 short as Redline is harder to find and mobil 1 V-twin easier on availability.

    SO,,,,, ON GOES THE OIL BEBATE .............

  6. wilks3

    wilks3 Junior Member

    Zinc or ZDDP was lowered because it plugged up the cats and messed up the O2 sensors if car/truck was using oil. ZDDP was put in oil to help fight wear on flat tappet camshafts that 99.99% of new cars don't have anymore, they use hydraulic roller camshafts.
    So, it makes no sense to me to use a high ZDDP oil in my catalytic, o2 sensor and hydraulic roller H-D engine. Does it???
  7. glider

    glider Veteran Member

    If any bike/engine was using enough oil to make this statement valid, the source of the oil usage should be found and repaired otherwise use a cheap oil and don't be concerned with the investment you have made in a Harley.
  8. 09 deluxe

    09 deluxe Member

    so bike oil has more zinc? What does the zinc do? I noticed a few people talk about the heat differences with an air cooled engine. I understand this as compared to a liquid cooled engine with a fan.

    what do they put in vtwin air cooled oil to deal with this, that makes it better. just zinc?

    thanks everyone
  9. 09 deluxe

    09 deluxe Member

    car oil vs bike oil 2

    My point last time was not to be cheap and save a few bucks.
    I think we have all seen how various companies try to market products as something great to demand a higher price for it.

    My question, more specifically is,

    what exactly is in vtwin air cooled oil that makes it better.

    Just trying to understand the science of oil.

  10. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Expert Member

    Re: car oil vs bike oil 2

    The additive package is way different for one