Oil Recommendations: 1970 Turbo Mini

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Hi everyone, I've been a long time lurker and wanted some opinions on the oil and the OCI for my mini: Water cooled 1275cc motor, Garrett T3 Turbo (Turbo is oil cooled only, runs at 7psi) 4 speed shared sump (dry clutch) Flat tappet cam I figure the oil cooled turbo requires a high flash point, the shared sump would require an oil that is resistant to shearing, and the flat tappets would require an oil high in ZDDP. I'm in NY and drive the car year round, winters can reach single digit *F, summers are typically in the 90*F range (keeping in mind summer traffic can really torture the oil as well). Currently running Shell Rotella T Synthetic 5w40 as it is readily available. Looking to change to M1 15w50 this summer. I am typically looking for oil pressures of ~25psi at idle, and ~60psi cruising. Last summer the SRT 5w40 was giving me 18-21psi at hot idle, so I was looking to try the M1 15-50 instead. Turbo-Mini specific forums typically mention Miller's Trans-M 20w50 oil (I believe it is classic-mini specific oil). Millers is not readily available in the US. I've had the car for about a year, OCI has been about 2000mi/6mo but was considering a shorter Mileage interval due to shearing. Oil consumption has been hard to track, as everyone knows that old british cars all leak oil, although I know that more recently oil has been getting past the valve seals on hot idle after a lot of boost (the 5w40 after 2000 miles is probably Xw30 or thinner now). Or it could be that the detergents in the Diesel oil has now cleaned up all the gunk, allowing oil to seep past the seals, although it does not smoke (ever so slightly) when the oil is cool (aka no boost, just cruising). Anyways, I am open to comments on the current Rotella I am using, the M1 that I plan to use, my current OCI and whatever oil suggestions that the board may have, thank you!
 
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Hey Bud... I have a 1991 Mini with a 950CC non-turbo charged engine and I use a Dino 10w30 / 10w40 oil in it. It has a shared sump, with wet clutch. It starts fine in the winter with Single Digits! I would use a 5w50 / 5W40 Synthetic in your application and change it at 3K Miles. This should stand up to the heat and the flat tappets. Can you post a picture of the little guy?
 
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Hi Neighbor, another L.I.'er to BITOG. The valvoline racing oils might be your ticket with the higher ZDDP levels. Or you can also boost your favorite dino or synthetic with Redline Break In additive. It can be used to boost zinc levels in any oil even after an engine is broken in, and used for extended drains if so desired. I've communicated with Redline regarding the product, and it might be something worth looking into. HTH
 
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That sounds like a unique and fantastic ride. With the oil cooled turbo, you'll want something synthetic. And with the flat tappets, you want a lot of ZDDP. I would think the Rotella T syn would be a great choice for those reasons. But I think you're on the right track now looking at new things, though I wonder about the flat tappets and M1. It will have less zddp and has a [perhaps unfair] reputation for high iron wear. With a wet clutch shared sump, short oci's are a must. Based on my motorcycle history, 2000/3000 seems ok, but about it. Valvoline racing does seem like one to consider.
 
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lenn

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Thanks for the comments guys. StevieC, I originally tried the Shell Rotella 15w-40 dino oil, but found the engine to idle rough in the fall/winter (in 30*F to 45*F mornings) with lots of valve noise, I promptly changed it out to the 5w40 synthetic. Although many of the classic mini forums feel that Synthetics are made by the devil, I often take their comments with a grain of salt (I don't believe many UK classic mini owners are on BITOG, as many of them know a guy who had switched to Synthetic only to encounter engine failure within XXX miles). I'll likely stick with the synthetics. Demarpaint, I haven't heard much about the Redline Break in addative and I am typically VERY skeptical about oil addatives. Do you know if this is readily available on the island? Sounds like something only SK speed would stock (as opposed to pepboys/autozone). I'll search around the forum to see what kind of reviews it has had, but thanks for the good suggestion. I've never used any of the Valvoline oils in the past, and wasn't aware that their synthetics had notably higher ZDDP content. I didn't have any particular reason not to use their oils, maybe just lack of marketing or my lack of interest to inquire. I typically run GC (0w30) in my commuter cars and Rotella Syn in my bikes. I was a bit stumped when it came to the mini, but after some light reading saw that Rotella Syn would be up to the job, but was curious to know if there was a better alternative (higher viscosity for the summer, better additive pack for the cam) Bepperb, funny you mention motorcycles with wet clutch and shared sump, as there are a number of turbo-mini owners that recommend motorcycle oils for the same reason, but there are many others that feel that motorcycle oils are overpriced and over-rated for the mini-application. Through some reading, I also heard about the high iron wear with M1, but I believe this is really strictly limited to the 5w30 (or 10w30?) line that is marketed towards to average consumer. I heard that the 15w50, although soon to be discontinued (or discontinued already?) contains a truly excellent addative package with great UOA's in traditional engines (non-shared sump, roller cams etc.). I was hoping that the M1 15w50 would also have excellent resistance to shearing. And of course, a photo:
 
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"but there are many others that feel that motorcycle oils are overpriced and over-rated" I would be one of them. The valvoline racing oils have a higher level of zddp than something like valvoline SynPower or Platinum or M1.
 
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 Originally Posted By: lenn
Thanks for the comments guys. Demarpaint, I haven't heard much about the Redline Break in addative and I am typically VERY skeptical about oil addatives. Do you know if this is readily available on the island? Sounds like something only SK speed would stock (as opposed to pepboys/autozone). I'll search around the forum to see what kind of reviews it has had, but thanks for the good suggestion. I've never used any of the Valvoline oils in the past, and wasn't aware that their synthetics had notably higher ZDDP content. I didn't have any particular reason not to use their oils, maybe just lack of marketing or my lack of interest to inquire. I typically run GC (0w30) in my commuter cars and Rotella Syn in my bikes. I was a bit stumped when it came to the mini, but after some light reading saw that Rotella Syn would be up to the job, but was curious to know if there was a better alternative (higher viscosity for the summer, better additive pack for the cam)
Advance Auto Parts can get Redline, I had Auto Barn get it for me, they matched the web price. Redline is one of the few compaines that makes an additive I would use. I did a lot of investigating before I bought it, including some email exchanges. If you go the Valvoline route it's the racing oil you're after. I haven't used their oils in decades but there are a lot of guys on the board that are loyal Valvoline users.
 
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On Redlineoil.com you can put in your zip code and get a list of places in your area that carry Redline. Unfortunately you have to sort through a lot of chain stores that only carry one item, like Water Wetter. I just contacted my local speed shop and they had it for me the next day.
 

lenn

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I honestly didn't think they EVER went with a wet clutch. Often times the clutch oil seal ring leaks and inadvertantly turns it into a wet clutch, though! haha
 
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