SAE Tech Paper 981444: A fascinating read!

Messages
8,937
Location
SC
I downloaded SAE 981444 about half hour ago and read it. This paper is entitled "Advanced Synthetic Passenger Vehicle Engine Oils for Extended Oil Drain Performance." I know it has been discussed on this forum before, especially for the "Aunt Minne" test, which was part of the many test results outlined in this paper. For what it's worth, here are my observations from a cursory first read:
  • 2. While all the Mobil synthetics tested showed virtually NO viscosity loss due to mechanical shearing (test CEC-L-36-A-90), the 0w30 and 0w40 OUTPERFORMED the 5w30 and 10w30, with the 0w30 having an almost immeasurable loss in viscosity of <1%.
  • 3. In the double length Sequence IIIE test, the 0w30 and 0w40 oils were outstanding, showing only a 28% increase in viscosity for the 0w30, while the 0w40 viscosity actually DROPPED 15% after 128 hours. Even at 256 hours (four times the normal length of the test), the 0w40 viscosity had only increased 17%. (For reference, the Sequence IIIE test permits up to a 375% increase in viscosity after 64 hours for an oil to "pass.")
  • 4. Using ASTM D4684, it was clearly shown that synthetic 10w30 will out flow a conventional 5w30 from -25*c to -35*c.
  • 5. The synthetic 5w30 used in the Aunt Minnie test had a particularly robust additive package with a virgin TBN of 11.8 and a sulfated ash of 1.3%. I'm not so sure how well that correlates to the Mobil 1 5w30 you can buy OTC today, but I'd be willing to bet 5w30 SuperSyn doesn't have virgin numbers this high. Nevertheless, the results of the Aunt Minnie test are nothing less than remarkable, IMO. It clearly shows that with a good PAO synthetic, once a year oil changes for short trip drivers are perfectly safe.
December 10, 2002, 08:46 PM: Message edited by: G-Man
 

Jay

Messages
1,607
Location
Idaho Falls, ID
Where's item 1? For item 2: Mobil1's oils are very shear stable, but I find it extremely hard to believe that the oils with the most VII are more shear stable than the oils with the least. For item 3: My engine consumed M1 0w-30 TS at 3 times the rate that it consumed the factory-fill 5w-20, which I think was Mobil Drive Clean. M1 0w-30 is the most volatile oil I have ever tried, bar none. These "outstanding" sequence IIIe test results for 0w-30 are even harder to believe than the shear results. Items 4 and 5 don't sound unreasonable.
 

MolaKule

Staff member
Messages
21,600
Location
Iowegia - USA
Jay, With full synthetics (PAO/esters mixes), it is not necessary that wide range viscosity oils have the most VII's. As I explained in another post, different viscosities of base oils can be blended to produce a wide range of viscosity, and some fully formulated full synth base oils have such high VI's that they can serve as 0W40's or 0W50's.
 

G-MAN

Thread starter
Messages
8,937
Location
SC
quote:
Originally posted by Jay: Where's item 1? For item 2: Mobil1's oils are very shear stable, but I find it extremely hard to believe that the oils with the most VII are more shear stable than the oils with the least. For item 3: My engine consumed M1 0w-30 TS at 3 times the rate that it consumed the factory-fill 5w-20, which I think was Mobil Drive Clean. M1 0w-30 is the most volatile oil I have ever tried, bar none. These "outstanding" sequence IIIe test results for 0w-30 are even harder to believe than the shear results. Items 4 and 5 don't sound unreasonable.
Interesting. Everytime you edit the post, you lose a list item. Must be a bug in the script. What I pointed on in #1 was that the Mobil synthetics used were all pre-Tri-Synthetic formulas with the exception of the 0w40, which was the Tri-Syn formula. These were all SJ, ACEA A3-96/B3-96, and GF-1 or GF-2 oils. Don't assume that the 0wXX oils have more VI improver. The paper states that the high VI of these weights was achieved with the proportion of Group V blended in and not with traditional polymer VI improvers. That's right, the 0w30 and 0w40 do not have ANY VI improvers in the additive package. This fits right in with Mobil's sometimes cryptic and eliptical language regarding their 0w30 and 0w40 being their most "advanced" formulations. Also, given how the 0wXX oils performed on the Noack test (9% for the 0w30 and 10.5% for the 0w40), I'd say your consumption issue with 0w30 should be attributed to something else besides volatility. I tried the Mobil 1 0w30 in my 300M once, and over the course of the 3000 miles it was in the engine the level on the dipstick never dropped off the full mark.
 
Messages
2,095
Location
IL
I also find it hard to believe and have seen analysis that in fact prove quite the opposite. Now MAYBE they could formulate them in such a way but apparently they do not. See the analysis of M1 0w40, it thinned to 30wt. Amsoil 0w30 thinned out in Toyota V6, whereas Red Line 10w30 was rock stable. And even Synpower 10w30 held viscosity better than the AMS 0w30. Red Line states that their 10w30 is more durable than the 5w30. Don't you think if they could formulate a 5w30 as stable as a 10w30 they would? At least Red Line is honest. Can't say so much about some other companies. I asked Mobil if 0w30 provides same protection as 10w30 and is as stable, why bother with the 5w and 10w? And they dodged the question basically. Because it is a load. We have also seen in many analysis Tri-syn 5w30 thinning out. Supersyn seems to be a little more shear stable. And how do you suppose that 0w30 has higher economy and that 0w40 meets ECIII! A 40wt that is energy conserving [Eek!] There isn't some magic potion that gives those oils better economy that can't be put in the 5w and 10w oils. I believe it is very simply, shear...
 

Patman

Staff member
Messages
21,989
Location
Oakville, Ontario
quote:
Originally posted by Al: That paper was issued in 1998. My understanding is that it was the basic history of the last generation (TriSynthetic). Its raining today and I think I'll reread it.
I keep that paper in my work bag so that I can read it every once in a while when we're slow here.
 

Jay

Messages
1,607
Location
Idaho Falls, ID
This is a good topic. I'm learning more about VI. I thought that the 0w-30 was fairly new and wasn't born till the Tri-Syn formulation.
quote:
The paper states that the high VI of these weights was achieved with the proportion of Group V blended in and not with traditional polymer VI improvers. That's right, the 0w30 and 0w40 do not have ANY VI improvers in the additive package.
This is at odds with what a Mobil rep told me when I called. He said all M1 30-weights used VII including 10w-30.
quote:
Also, given how the 0wXX oils performed on the Noack test (9% for the 0w30 and 10.5% for the 0w40), I'd say your consumption issue with 0w30 should be attributed to something else besides volatility.
What then? I can only relate my experience. If my consumption with 0w-30 was 3X that of dino 5w-20 and about 5X the consumption I'm getting with M1 5w-30, what else could it be?
 

Al

Messages
19,167
Location
Elizabethtown, Pa
That paper was issued in 1998. My understanding is that it was the basic history of the last generation (TriSynthetic). Its raining today and I think I'll reread it.
 

MolaKule

Staff member
Messages
21,600
Location
Iowegia - USA
I think what Jay is saying is that Manufacturers Specifications for oils do not always meet daily driving experience. WHile an oil may be speced for low volatility, a specifc engine or engines may volatize and oxidize the oil due to high combustions temps, low sump capacities, etc, irregardless of the original specs. Specs are simply guidelines and are mostly influenced by government regulations and legal beagles. The engine knows nothing of the specs, it simply follows the laws of physics. [ December 13, 2002, 12:05 AM: Message edited by: MolaKule ]
 

MolaKule

Staff member
Messages
21,600
Location
Iowegia - USA
In the paper, under the heading of Shear Stability, "...Finally, high viscosity index synthetic base fluids require lower levels of viscosity modifiers in the engine oil formulation compared to conventional mineral based oils." XVHI, I think you're reading more into the paper than it says. It never says that Mobil does not use VII's, it just says less of the VII's are used in synthetic oils. While it IS possible to produce a full synthetic oil with no VII's, it is not economical nor customer acceptible (price-wise!) at this time to do so.
 

G-MAN

Thread starter
Messages
8,937
Location
SC
quote:
Originally posted by MolaKule: In the paper, under the heading of Shear Stability, "...Finally, high viscosity index synthetic base fluids require lower levels of viscosity modifiers in the engine oil formulation compared to conventional mineral based oils." XVHI, I think you're reading more into the paper than it says. It never says that Mobil does not use VII's, it just says less of the VII's are used in synthetic oils. While it IS possible to produce a full synthetic oil with no VII's, it is not economical nor customer acceptible (price-wise!) at this time to do so.
Actually, the part of the paper I was referring to is the following passage under "Physical/Chemical Properties":
quote:
One key advantages [sic] of synthetic oils is the high level of formulation flexibility available. Synthetic base fluids have inherently high viscosity indices, low volatility, and excellent cold flow characteristics, which means that a variety of unique low viscosity and/or widely cross graded formulations are readily available. For example, the SAE 0w viscosity grade oils Syn A, Syn D, and Syn F, are achieved primarily by use of 4 cSt polyalphaolefin (PAO) synthetic hydrocarbon base fluid in combination with other unconventional (API Type V) synthetic fluids.
Granted, on a second read, I'm probably reading too much into this statement, because the key word in the paragraph is "primarily." The wide viscosity range is achieved "primarily" from the 4cSt PAO and Group V base oils. This does not rule out the use of some VI improver, albeit probably a very small amount judging from the shear stability of the test oils used. Edit: typo [ December 13, 2002, 08:05 AM: Message edited by: XHVI ]
 
Messages
47,644
Location
Duvall WA - Pacific NW USA
Interesting thread. I will download the paper from SAE...for $10 if need be...but er, um...is there a, well, "free" version? Also someone above wrote:
quote:
See the analysis of M1 0w40, it thinned to 30wt. Amsoil 0w30 thinned out in Toyota V6, whereas Red Line 10w30 was rock stable.......At least Red Line is honest. Can't say so much about some other companies.
Be careful with single data points.....at least this is what I am told.....I'm not sure you could call two fairly reputable companies "dishonest" with this type of "data" Yes I read the Amsoil analysis on the V6 sludge creator...it bothered me, OK? But I think there is also other analysis data to be weighed as well. Thank you.
 

MolaKule

Staff member
Messages
21,600
Location
Iowegia - USA
"Granted, on a second read, I'm probably reading too much into this statement, because the key word in the paragraph is "primarily." The wide viscosity range is achieved "primarily" from the 4cSt PAO and Group V base oils. This does not rule out the use of some VI improver, albeit probably a very small amount judging from the shear stability of the test oils used." edit: Having "little" or "no" VII's has been one of the selling points of Full synths for some time, since the oil hardly shears and there are fewer VII's to shear back to sludge. The oils are mostly Newtonian in characteristic. There is approx. 80% PAO and 20% polyol (TMP) esters in both Mobil 1 products and Amsoil products. Redline has a higher level of esters and their esters are PE esters, which are more stable and more expensive. [ December 13, 2002, 02:55 PM: Message edited by: MolaKule ]
 
Messages
33,976
Location
Southern NJ
Quote:
There is approx. 80% PAO and 20% polyol (TMP) esters in both Mobil 1 products and Amsoil products. Redline has a higher level of esters and their esters are PE esters, which are more stable and more expensive.
....back in the day.
 
Messages
13,132
Location
By Detroit
Quote:
  • 4. Using ASTM D4684, it was clearly shown that synthetic 10w30 will out flow a conventional 5w30 from -25*c to -35*c.
  • I have always said that if I found myself in a cold enough climate to requre a 5w30, I would instead go with a 10w30 synthetic. Woah, didn't realize how old this thread is. This one probably still true though.
     
    Last edited:
    Top