Help me pick my oil.

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Sep 19, 2002
I have a '70 Chevy Malibu with the original small block engine (85,000 original miles). Given the fact that the new SL oils are optimized for modern engines with emission controls, I need a recommendation on a good dino oil. The engine runs well for its age, but does use a bit of oil (approx. 1 qt per 800 miles). This useage is not an issue as the car it driven for pleasure only. I had been using Valvoline Maxlife, SJ formulation, but with the comments about the new SL formulation, I don't think it would be a good choice. Your comments are appreciated.
Just a follow-up. I have been using 10W-40, historically recommended weight for old V-8's in my area. Should I be using some other weight?
I think 15w40 Pennzoil would be a great dino oil to run in that car. But I do believe Auto-rx would be beneficial before switching over. Or Schaeffer's Neutra.
I have considered Auto-Rx, but I am concerned about the effects of the product on the 30-year-old seals in this engine. If it were newer, I probably would not hesitate. My understanding is that the materials used in seals from 30 years ago are different from seals in a more modern engine, hence my concern. Am I correct on this line of thinking? I had been thinking of using a diesel rated motor oil like Chevron Delo or Mystik JT-8 to clean up things, although the engine does not seem to be too sludged up. I agree that 15W-40 would be a good idea.
I had a green '74 Nova with 350 and three-speed manual, Hurst Shifter, and modified induction system. Ran Pennzoil 10W40 in it before selling it to brother-in-law. Never had a problem with it, ever. You might consider the Schaeffer's Moly Bond 15W40 for a bit of extra protection.
tgharch Considering where you live and availability you might try the Phillips HDII 15/40 Diesel oil. It might not be the best diesel oil available but it will certainly clean your gas engine " I can attest to that from experience with it" and has less sulphated ash than other HD oils.The way the oiling system is designed in that motor you could use this year round if wanted and some carefull warm up in dead of winter.
Quote: "So many choices so few engines." Although we have many cars in the Family I have caught my self looking to buy a new one to use to test other oils. Is that a sickness or what [Smile] I resorted to using the Lawn Tractor to test one oil,the HD Phillips 15/40. Two more oil analysis in their line will be coming in the next couple of months. FWIW that is the only brand OTC Dino oil I am currently using. Glad you found the forum Bob has set up to discuss oil and other lubes, ect. Please come back and post often.
Dragboat, I hoped you would comment since we are from the same neck of the woods. I have used Trop-Arctic in the past and have been very satisfied. I would think Phillips'HD oil would be of the same high quality. I may try your recommendation. So many choices so few engines. By the way for those interested Frank Miller responded to my email very quickly and informed me that Auto-Rx would be safe for the old seal materials.
The auto RX or neutra might be right from what i've read here to work on seals and clean things a bit. Then I would run Delo 15w40. The ash content will not bother anything.
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