Oil for 1967 Alfa Romeo Spdr.

Joined
Jul 26, 2004
Messages
13,186
Location
Middlesex County CT
Posting this on behalf of a coworker's husband. Here is the info he sent me.
 Quote:
I have been using Mobil1 15 w 50. The original spec for oil in the Alfa calls for 20 w 50, which I believe is due to the DOHC with buckets and shims. It was a pretty hi-performance engine for the time (1967) with an all aluminum block and head, removable steel cylinder liners (makes rebuilds easy), forged 5 bearing crank, hemi head with a center spark plug, twin cams with chain drive, and two twin barrel side draught Webers (all 4 barrels open all the time, no secondaries like a domestic 4 barrel). It also has a 5 speed and 4 wheel discs, kind of unusual in 67. On the other hand it’s only 1600cc’s (about 100 ci) and is rated at 125 SAE HP ( which I think gives higher ratings that the current and more accurate DIN system). It’s a high revving engine, with the red line at about 6700, but most people will rev the 1600 to around 7500 with no problems. I rebuilt the engine about 25k ago, total mileage is about 2k to 2.5k a year.
He is looking for alternatives to the 2year OCI of M1 15W50; each OC is >$50 I suggested an OTC diesel once a year (before I knew the mfg rec weight was 20W-50) This seems to be the type of engine I would be wary of using oil with reduced anti-wear. Anybody have any out of the box ideas on this one? I suppose sticking with his regimen isn't out of the question.
 
Joined
Sep 8, 2005
Messages
15,217
Location
Canada
Guy has a really nice Alpha Romeo, and he's complaining about $25/year in oil costs? If he's THAT cheap, tell him to sell the car! Anyway, Valvoline VR1 20W-50 would be a cheaper option, with good protection for a much older, high-revving engine.
 
Joined
May 7, 2005
Messages
336
Location
Texas
I used to have a '67 Alfa Duetto (spider) with Dell'ortos instead of Webers. The owner's manual calls for 20W-40, NOT 20W-50. The manual also advises that for "steady temperatures below 0 degrees C (32 degrees F.) we advise the use of" 10W-40. Since 20W-40 is an obsolete spec, everyone uses something else. Most people I know change the oil annually and use a 20W-50 such as Castrol. Some opt for a 15W-40 HDEO. (That's what I would use). But there's nothing at all wrong with using a synthetic 15W-50. The owner might want to consider a synthetic 5W- or 10W-40 as well. I now have a '71 Alfa GTV with Spica mechanical fuel injection. Its engine is slightly larger at 1.8L but otherwise much the same. The oil I favor is Chevron Delo 15W-40 with an annual change, even though I only put about 2000 miles per year on the car. I think you've given your co-worker's husband good advice.
 
Joined
May 30, 2003
Messages
5,117
Location
Airlie Beach Australia
Hi, simple_gifts - I know these engines very well. I have owned and serviced many of these cars - mainly GTVs - great driver's cars. As an earlier Poster has alluded to you are best to stick with an SAE40 lubricant - either 5w-40 or 10W-40 At the very least a 15W-40 HDEO will work very well. Anything over SAE40 is probably counter productive in these engines When new and in Scandinavia we always fed them 10W-30 all year round Leave any valve adjustments to somebody who knows what they are doing and has a good supply of shims............
 

simple_gifts

Thread starter
Joined
Jul 26, 2004
Messages
13,186
Location
Middlesex County CT
Thanks for the responses. He ended up checking his O.M and 20W-40 is the recommendation; I think I got him going on the HDEO route; Do I have to worry about CJ, CI etc rating or is any modern HDEO sufficient?
 
Joined
May 7, 2005
Messages
336
Location
Texas
The newer (and more easily found) formulations are most likely all going to be API rated CJ-4/SM. They'll do just fine.
 
Top