I’m going to dispense with he quotes in hopes of improving readability.
Thank you for the compliment on the C&P, I do try though clearly some of my pictures turn out better than others. I’ve been known to tell them at work if I was a professional photographer they would have to pay me more. Nonetheless I’ll keep it up as long as people find value in it.
RE: a contrarian position to the lab. I’m not sure I’m completely contrary to their position, (more on that in a minute), but whether it be a curse or a blessing (probably a curse) and my field of work - experience has conditioned me to not take data at face value.
BTW - None this is directed at anyone here specifically, and yes I’m being intentionally obscure about what exactly I do, though it doesn’t have anything to do with oil or filters.
When someone hands me data, I ask a lot of questions before I start trying to figure the data out. These questions are things like: “Who collected the data”, “Why did they collect the data”, “how did they collect the data”, “do we have any other data”, "If we have other data is it relevant”, “if there are conclusions are they valid”, "What is the population and sample size of the data”.
This kind of thinking comes from getting things like reports where the executive summary says stuff like “x improved 8% over the same period last year” but looking at the data and seeing that “x” is still a horrid result. I’mean isn’t “x” is at 38% something that should go in the executive summary? But I digress...
I also find that sometimes people reach conclusions, and while the conclusions may ultimately prove correct frequently several steps in the process are skipped.
So, if you ask me if I agree with Werner Von Braun my answer is “maybe” or “it depends”. Generally though I would say one UOA viewed in a vacuum is worthless, mainly because the sample size is too small, the population too large and the variables too great. Unit averages and Universal averages are an attempt to address this. If actions have been taken or pure circumstance have reduced these factors, then a smaller sample size may have increased value.
But see we recently learned from the Harley Street Rod UOA that not all results are added to the universal averages. So we have filtered data without full knowledge of the filter applied, do we not?
So, now that I’ve gone off on that little tyrade/tangent lets try a practical application:
RE: Blackstones positon on insolubles: https://www.blackstone-labs.com/what-is-oil-analysis.php
Says in part:
This test tells you how good a job the oil filter is doing, and to what extent the oil has oxidized.
Says in part:
Excessive insolubles can form in an engine oil if the oil: is running hot, is receiving more than a normal amount of contamination, is suffering more (or more severe) heat cycles than is normal, is being run longer than a typical use cycle, or, on the other side of the coin, if oil filtration is marginal or relatively ineffective.
and if you click on the gas/diesel explanation on: https://www.blackstone-labs.com/report-explanation.php
and hover over “insolubles” it says
Solids formed by oil oxidation and blow-by past the rings.
So, some of those pesky questions are “Who wrote that”, “Why did they write it”.
So assuming anyone is still with me, I hope this might help explain why I don’t agree with:
An insoluble number is also a good indicator of filter effectiveness.
But might agree something like:
Oil filtration is a factor to look at related to a high insolubles reading.
Or put another way. A low insolubles number could just mean that the engine isn’t really producing any insolubles (and thus has nothing to do with the filter).