Honda MTF fluid

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bk7794

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Originally Posted By: Tegger
Originally Posted By: bk7794
I am just going to get regular motor oil. Not for cheapness sake, but it is what the manual says
The manual is outdated. Do not use motor oil. Read my other post.
One person says Honda MTF is too thin, another says to use Amsoil. I might try Amsoil maybe, just to try it. IF it doesn't work then I will just put it in bottles and just keep it. I figure oil works good because its what the manual says. They designed the tranny for oil. I am changing the fluid because its well overdue. Probably 70k on the oil. So I might aswell. It isn't like auto tranny fluid.
 
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Originally Posted By: bk7794
One person says Honda MTF is too thin
If it was "too thin", don't you think Honda would know that? Honda developed their MTF in order to address specific shortcomings of motor oil as a gear lubricant; Honda developed their MTF specifically to work with the metallurgy and polymer technology of their transmissions. Furthermore, Honda has improved and updated their MTF at least twice since its introduction. I find it unbelievable in the extreme that Honda would produce a lubricant that is "too thin" to work properly. Is "one person" on a home-grease-monkey website more knowledgeable than the Honda engineering team? Honda MTF was formulated specifically for your Honda designed-and-built transmission. It is just the right viscosity, and has just the right additives, to ensure the tranny will not fail for lack of the proper lubrication.
 
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Tegger - Remember that the new Honda fluid was not designed for that old trans. So no engineering was involved. And even the new fluid in an appropriate trans is a COMPROMISE, not the best in all conditions. Cold weather shifting complaints are high on the list of corporate decisions. Absolute longest life of the trans and best shifting are not the highest priority. I like the new Honda fluid, it is great - don't get me wrong. But there are many facets.
 
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Originally Posted By: mechtech2
Tegger - Remember that the new Honda fluid was not designed for that old trans.
But it WAS. It so very much WAS. OBD-II was in the pipeline by the early-'90s, with OBD-II-specific changes to motor oils effectively mandated by 1994. The OP's car was only 3-years old at that time. Honda had millions of cars on the road with older transmissions that were meant to take ZDDP-rich SF/SG 10W-30/40 engine oil. These cars were left with much inferior protection from the new OBD-II-compliant oils. Honda responded by issuing their MTF. Honda directly and specifically meant their new MTF for ALL Honda manual transmissions, ESPECIALLY the old ones. Here's an excerpt from Honda Service News (Honda's dealer publication) from July 1996: Using motor oil in the trans of an M/T-equipped Honda (except a Passport) may cause a moaning noise from the differential when turning left or when accelerating. To avoid this problem, use only Genuine Honda MTF (P/N 08798-9016, H/C 4928271). Not only does MTF contain special additives for smoother shifting, it extends the fluid change interval to 90,000 miles. The latest revisions of Honda MTF extend protection to the newer carbon-faced synchros without reducing protection for older transmissions. Honda MTF is the finest stuff on the market for Honda manual transmissions.
 
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bk7794

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Originally Posted By: Tegger
Originally Posted By: mechtech2
Tegger - Remember that the new Honda fluid was not designed for that old trans.
But it WAS. It so very much WAS. OBD-II was in the pipeline by the early-'90s, with OBD-II-specific changes to motor oils effectively mandated by 1994. The OP's car was only 3-years old at that time. Honda had millions of cars on the road with older transmissions that were meant to take ZDDP-rich SF/SG 10W-30/40 engine oil. These cars were left with much inferior protection from the new OBD-II-compliant oils. Honda responded by issuing their MTF. Honda directly and specifically meant their new MTF for ALL Honda manual transmissions, ESPECIALLY the old ones. Here's an excerpt from Honda Service News (Honda's dealer publication) from July 1996: Using motor oil in the trans of an M/T-equipped Honda (except a Passport) may cause a moaning noise from the differential when turning left or when accelerating. To avoid this problem, use only Genuine Honda MTF (P/N 08798-9016, H/C 4928271). Not only does MTF contain special additives for smoother shifting, it extends the fluid change interval to 90,000 miles. The latest revisions of Honda MTF extend protection to the newer carbon-faced synchros without reducing protection for older transmissions. Honda MTF is the finest stuff on the market for Honda manual transmissions.
I guess I will give it a shot to see how it shifts. If its feels like I am grinding gears then I will take it out and throw in regular oil. If I like it I will monitor it and see how it does. If I see shifting diminish over time then oil will go back in it.
 
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I'd say the Honda Genuine MTF in a 'normal' daily driver may make it 5 years or 50,000 max as 'my' preference. In a neglected app with worn synchros? You're fortunate to not have shifting quality degrade by 15,000 miles.
 
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Amsoil MTF makes my 04 Civic Si shift like butter, but my 90 Civic would grind in 1st, 2nd, and reverse when using Amsoil. I drained it and used conventional 10w-30 and no more grinds. My buddy has a 95 Integra that would grind gears using Redline MTL, so he gave me the rest of his stash. I think I'm going to try the Redline in my 90 Civic next time it is due for a change.
 
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Anybody else wonder why Honda was the only one to recommend motor oil in their trannys? And remember, it was ATF OR motor oil. Motor oil was not exclusively recommended, so ZDDP concerns are null and void.
 
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Originally Posted By: mechtech2
And remember, it was ATF OR motor oil. Motor oil was not exclusively recommended, so ZDDP concerns are null and void.
I don't know where that myth came from, but Honda has NEVER, ever specified ATF in ANY of their manual transmissions. I just went through a bunch of my factory manuals, from Civic to NSX, and I see a range of specified motor oils from SAE-30 to 20W-40, depending on model and year. Honda ALWAYS listed an SAE rating (SE, SF, SG, etc.) for the specified motor oil. Not one of the manuals mentions ATF except for automatic transmissions. Starting in 1995, Honda began specifying ONLY Genuine Honda MTF for their manual transmissions. Every Honda factory shop manual from 1995-up has this boilerplate paragraph in the tranny maintenance section: Always use Genuine Honda Manual Transmission Fluid (MTF). Using motor oil can cause stiffer shift- ing because it does not contain the proper addi- tives.
 
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Originally Posted By: teambeechstreet
Amsoil MTF makes my 04 Civic Si shift like butter, but my 90 Civic would grind in 1st, 2nd, and reverse when using Amsoil. I drained it and used conventional 10w-30 and no more grinds. My buddy has a 95 Integra that would grind gears using Redline MTL, so he gave me the rest of his stash. I think I'm going to try the Redline in my 90 Civic next time it is due for a change.
Go for it. Yeah, your 90 model may have a thing for motor oil at this point? shrug AFAIK, when the first HG MTF came out it was recommended to only use motor oil as a temporary alternative.
 
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You don't want modern motor oils in there, a MTF is more like the old school oils with ZDDP and will have the proper friction to make your syncros work. Modern friction modified oils shifted like crud in my 94s transmission before I knew better. It took a couple "flushes" of mtf to get the shift feel back. Use the redline if you want a thicker MTF but I get really good shift feel with both the amsoil and Honda type 1 and 2 MTFs. Like others have said, use with confidence.
 
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Originally Posted By: LT4 Vette
Tegger, Are you a Honda mechanic ?
Nope, just a home grease-monkey. Most of my Honda practical experience has been with my own '91 Integra (bought new), and with neighbors' and co-workers' cars thrown in. Plus I've collected quite a bit of Honda documentation during the last 22 years.
 
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