Are metal flakes in filterless engines expected?

Dec 19, 2004
New Orleans La
New Champion generator with a 459cc engine, with no filter, I expected the oil to have metal flakes and changed the oil after about a minute or two. I've done this with 5 other generators and the oil always had a lot of flakes. What I've always done is run the unit a couple of minutes and change the oil a few times. One would hardly notice the flakes if not or the sunlight. Usually on the third change there is no much there and go to 50- 60 hour oil changes. Never had a problem, even running them for up to nine days only stopping for gas and oil.

Back to the 459cc engine. I've changed the oil five time in a span of 15 minutes. The 5th time there was some flakes, but not much so I think the sump is clean enough.

Predator generators manual says break in is at 20hrs and change the oil. Champion says break in is at 5 hrs and to change the oil.

The manufactures have to know about this and seem ok to go hours with metal in the oil before the first oil change. Surely metal in the oil isn't good for an engine, but it doesn't seem to hurt either.

Any thoughts, or am I over thinking this?
You're overthinking it. Every small filterless engine I've ever had sparkled. I change the oil the first time after an hour, 10 hours on the next, then at 50 thereafter. They all live long and useful lives.

You're just wasting oil for very little end-life gain.
Since an iron cylinder liner would mostly solve the metal in oil problem like some manufactures do it`s a shame that all AC engines don`t have them.
Only time I saw metal flakes was during the first oil with the break in oil. After that, never.
I have had metal flakes with the oil in a predator 212 for 3 oil changes! I have only had the engine a year and ran it less than 10 hours but a Lot metal flakes still are coming out. Not too happy but it is a cheap engine after all.
I say it’s not normal or at least didn’t used to be. I have a few gas OPE engines that have very clean used oil. Some older and some newer.

The 3 year old Honda GC on my log splitter on the other hand creates gold glitter. Took this yesterday after it’s oil change. As far as log splitters are concerned, I’m guessing this one has a pretty easy life compared to most. Yearly changes, always ran for at least 30 mins, stored inside etc. I’m pretty disappointed, but it could last for years too
Every one I've bought glittered pretty good. I run them at least 5hrs before the first oil change, then again after another 5-10. After that it's between 50-100 depending on how things look, if there's still some glitter I'll go 50 if it's clean then it's 100. Most of them clean up pretty well with around 25hrs of total run time.