Splitting hairs on "synthetic" definition?

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I saw a web site that said the only four (4) true synthetic motor oils available today are: Mobil 1, Amsoil, Royal Purple and Redline. I'm guessing that they're considering a motor oil to be true synthetic if it's a Group IV - PAO (or Group V) basestock. "By the book", just for my clarification, that is the definition of true synthetic, is it not?...it must be made from Group IV PAO (or Group V) as the majority (and not just a small portion) of its basestock, correct? Curious, I thought I'd check the manufacturers websites to see if they advertise the oils they claim as being synthetic and state that their basestock is, in fact, Group IV (PAO) or Group V. I started with Amsoil, and they do not specifically refer to their synthetic oil as being made from Grp. IV or V. Oh sure, their distributors might make this claim on their personal websites...but Amsoil doesn't! Take a look at the section titled "What kind of base stocks does AMSOIL use? Are AMSOIL synthetic lubricants PAO-based?" - http://www.amsoil.com/frequent.aspx# Next, I checked Mobil 1. My search - pao group iv site:mobiloil.com - did not match any documents, however the search: pao site:mobiloil.com yielded: https://mobiloil.com/en/faq/ask-our-auto...tly-mineral-oil in which they say "Just like other companies, we do not discuss our product formulations for obvious proprietary reasons. Mobil 1™ Extended Performance is formulated using a combination of high performance fluids including PAO, along with a proprietary system of performance additives..." Hmmm...that doesn't sound like a true synthetic either, does it? ..."formulated using a combination of high performance fluids including PAO..." Next it Royal Purple. "Your search - pao group iv site:royalpurpleconsumer.com - did not match any documents." nor did "Your search - pao site:royalpurpleconsumer.com - did not match any documents.". Finally is Redline. "Your search - pao group iv site:redlineoil.com - did not match any documents." pao site:redlineoil.com yields a couple of links: https://www.google.com/search?q=pao+site%3Aredlineoil.com&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8 in which one says "What happens when you run lesser conventional oils, low-cost "synthetic" blends like Syn 3® or Royal Purple®, and PAO synthetics like Mobil® or Amsoil®? You find excessive wear in the cam journals and lifters due to shortages of antiwear additives.", and "There are many benefits to running Red Line’s ester-based motorcycle oils" but I don't see that they refer to their oils are being PAO basestock or Group IV either. Comments? Thoughts? Are there any consumer grade PAO based, synthetic motor oils and how do you positively know that??? As a side note, I've contacted the U.S. Supreme Court to get a copy of the transcript from the famous Mobil 1 .v Castrol case. I'll find that interesting, I'm sure. smile Thank you, Ed
 
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Redline is ester based.. so of course its not PAO. Others use various amounts (including 0)but no normal automotive oil can be 100% pao. Start with made or sold in Germany full synthetic oils.
 
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Here we go again... horse
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Comments? Thoughts? Are there any consumer grade PAO based, synthetic motor oils and how do you positively know that???
Who cares? PAO alone does not a great oil make.
Originally Posted By: Ed_Flecko
As a side note, I've contacted the U.S. Supreme Court to get a copy of the transcript from the famous Mobil 1 .v Castrol case. I'll find that interesting, I'm sure.
There was no court case, just a complaint filed with and dealt with by National Advertising Division of BBB.
 

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Originally Posted By: MolaKule
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As a side note, I've contacted the U.S. Supreme Court to get a copy of the transcript from the famous Mobil 1 .v Castrol case. I'll find that interesting, I'm sure.
Who said it was a Supreme court case? You need to read more historic threads here as this has been discussed ad nauseum. http://www.bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php/topics/950368/1
Thanks for the link...I'll check it out. Ed
 

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Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
Here we go again... horse
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Comments? Thoughts? Are there any consumer grade PAO based, synthetic motor oils and how do you positively know that???
Who cares? PAO alone does not a great oil make.
I do - that's why I asked. While "PAO alone does not a great oil make.", I don't think anyone would debate it's the best starting point for a quality oil. Ed
 
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I don't believe PAO is the best starting point for a "quality oil". But I'm not going to waste time debating it, so in my case, you're right.
 

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For historic accuracy, a simple Googling would have shown there was no Court Case in the Mobil/Castrol 'synthetic" issue, as the NAD does not hear court cases: The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus does not conduct "trials" and there is no adversarial proceedings.
 
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Originally Posted By: MolaKule
For historic accuracy, a simple Googling would have shown there was no Court Case in the Mobil/Castrol 'synthetic" issue, as the NAD does not hear court cases: The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus does not conduct "trials" and there is no adversarial proceedings. [size:14pt][/size]
Thank you. I saw this too, but then I wonder why so many people all over the web refer to it as Mobil suing Castrol? Ed
 
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Originally Posted By: Ed_Flecko
I do - that's why I asked. While "PAO alone does not a great oil make.", I don't think anyone would debate it's the best starting point for a quality oil. Ed
It is indeed a good base oil esp. for extreme use motor oils.. Think extremely cold or an autocross track day on a car that gets excessively hot. for most vehicles though neither is often the case and the negatives of PAO can often be a drawback. From price to poor additive solubility.. This is reduced by blending it and using it as a percentage rather than a majority basestock. In the end you want to look at the overall oil not just the basestock as that can be as silly as focusing on one part of the oil such as NOACK. And of course with modern technology there are some basestocks that dont neatly fall into normal basestock performance envelops. this whole topic has been discussed extensively.. its no longer beating a dead horse.. its more like beating a 5 year old roadkill carcass.
 

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Originally Posted By: Ed_Flecko
Originally Posted By: MolaKule
For historic accuracy, a simple Googling would have shown there was no Court Case in the Mobil/Castrol 'synthetic" issue, as the NAD does not hear court cases: The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus does not conduct "trials" and there is no adversarial proceedings. [size:14pt][/size]
Thank you. I saw this too, but then I wonder why so many people all over the web refer to it as Mobil suing Castrol? Ed
Not everyone is perpetuating the Myth, but those who do generally fall into one or more of the following categories: 1.) Lack of understanding as to what the NAD division of the BBB actually does, 2.) Lack of understanding as to what a lubricant is and how it is processed, 3.) Agendas, 4.) Self serving desire to see one's comments on the internet, 5.) General lack of education, 6.) not checking facts before putting foot-in-mouth
 
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At the end of the day, the type of base stock used to formulate the oil is inconsequential; the product’s performance is what matters.
I think this quote from Amsoils site makes the most sense. And I personally want the basestocks to be mixed to provide optimal performance rather than simply containing a certain group of stock. The total formulation is the key.
 
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Originally Posted By: Ed_Flecko
I saw a web site that said the only four (4) true synthetic motor oils available today are: Mobil 1, Amsoil, Royal Purple and Redline.
Yeah, you can find websites that say the world is flat and that there are UFOs hidden in Nevada hangars, too.
Originally Posted By: Ed_Flecko
"By the book", just for my clarification, that is the definition of true synthetic, is it not?...it must be made from Group IV PAO (or Group V) as the majority (and not just a small portion) of its basestock, correct?
I think that's overly restrictive. Group III+ oils that are formed by completely dismantling and reassembling hydrocarbon molecules from crude oil are also unquestionably synthetic. So are Group III+ stocks that are made from natural gas, such as Pennzoil Ultra Platinum. Group I and II stocks are made by distilling fractions from crude oil. They are natural components found in the crude oil that are isolated by refining, not created during a refining/synthesis process. Everything else is synthetic, because varying degrees of chemical processing are applied to create the desired molecules from raw material that doesn't contain those molecules.
 
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Originally Posted By: MolaKule
Not everyone is perpetuating the Myth, but those who do generally fall into one or more of the following categories: 1.) Lack of understanding as to what the NAD division of the BBB actually does, 2.) Lack of understanding as to what a lubricant is and how it is processed, 3.) Agendas, 4.) Self serving desire to see one's comments on the internet, 5.) General lack of education, 6.) not checking facts before putting foot-in-mouth
Geez, those last five cover about 95% of my posts here. smile Sophomoric humor usually comprises the other 5%.
 
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From the movie "War Games". [after playing out all possible outcomes for Global Thermonuclear War] (or what constitutes a synthetic oil) Joshua: Greetings, Professor Falken. Stephen Falken: Hello, Joshua. Joshua: A strange game. The only winning move is not to play. How about a nice game of chess?
 
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There was an actual court case in Germany. Now both parties involved wish they hadn't gone though it. Unfortunately for them laws in Germany are not like the USA, they stay and are difficult to get out. The court also had a lot of material to make their decision on going back decades. How do you tell an oil is a true synthetic in Germany? Easy it will Full Synthetic or Voll-Synthese on the bottle. Only oils meeting the legal standard can use the term. IIRC it was Mobil who brought the suit claiming the Mobil was real synthetic. No one at the corperate level had the forethought to think that one day conventional oil would be good enough and share similar properties to synthetics. Now Mobil wanted to claim their Visom as synthetic in Germany and the law they wanted and fought for came back to bite them, they couldn't. Their marketing dept went spent late nights wordsmithing alternative double talk terms but it didn't fly, the German consumer is not like the average American consumer. At the prices they charge for oil they know what they are buying and a well aware of the law. Mobil even went so far as telling their customer service not to discuss synthetic and the only place they cannot hide it and they must disclose it was in Germany. That document has been posted on BITOG a few times. Ironically some of the information taken into account in making the original decision was the Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis of gas to liquid which is considered a true synthetic. The next blunder. In an effort to circumvent the law someone at Shell decided to call it a group III in the hopes of labeling it "Full Synthetic" therefor opening the door for all group III to be labeled "Full synthetic". It was never heard and didn't fly. I read this in a print trade article in Germany a few years back, i don't remember all the details. As it stands the companies have to make a special formula just for Germany if they want to call it "Full synthetic" which is a real PITA for them but the demand is there for product labeled as such. So where does that leave the US consumer who really must have a synthetic oil for whatever reason. Simple, no research needed just buy Pennzoil Platinum or Ultra, its a true Fischer Tropsch derived synthetic at fire sale prices. At one time i did a lot of research on this, i had the court transcript and internal memo from companies. Today it really doesn't matter, the oils are so good. the only thing that PO's me is when they try and sell group III for full synthetic prices in Germany. We are not talking about a couple of bucks either, $100 to $125 a gallon isn't chump change.
 

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Originally Posted By: Trav
There was an actual court case in Germany. Now both parties involved wish they hadn't gone though it. Unfortunately for them laws in Germany are not like the USA, they stay and are difficult to get out. The court also had a lot of material to make their decision on going back decades. How do you tell an oil is a true synthetic in Germany? Easy it will Full Synthetic or Voll-Synthese on the bottle. Only oils meeting the legal standard can use the term. IIRC it was Mobil who brought the suit claiming the Mobil was real synthetic. No one at the corperate level had the forethought to think that one day conventional oil would be good enough and share similar properties to synthetics. Now Mobil wanted to claim their Visom as synthetic in Germany and the law they wanted and fought for came back to bite them, they couldn't. Their marketing dept went spent late nights wordsmithing alternative double talk terms but it didn't fly, the German consumer is not like the average American consumer. At the prices they charge for oil they know what they are buying and a well aware of the law. Mobil even went so far as telling their customer service not to discuss synthetic and the only place they cannot hide it and they must disclose it was in Germany. That document has been posted on BITOG a few times. Ironically some of the information taken into account in making the original decision was the Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis of gas to liquid which is considered a true synthetic. The next blunder. In an effort to circumvent the law someone at Shell decided to call it a group III in the hopes of labeling it "Full Synthetic" therefor opening the door for all group III to be labeled "Full synthetic". It was never heard and didn't fly. I read this in a print trade article in Germany a few years back, i don't remember all the details. As it stands the companies have to make a special formula just for Germany if they want to call it "Full synthetic" which is a real PITA for them but the demand is there for product labeled as such. So where does that leave the US consumer who really must have a synthetic oil for whatever reason. Simple, no research needed just buy Pennzoil Platinum or Ultra, its a true Fischer Tropsch derived synthetic at fire sale prices. At one time i did a lot of research on this, i had the court transcript and internal memo from companies. Today it really doesn't matter, the oils are so good. the only thing that PO's me is when they try and sell group III for full synthetic prices in Germany. We are not talking about a couple of bucks either, $100 to $125 a gallon isn't chump change.
Thank you Trav...I appreciate your comments and your time. Ed
 
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