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I've heard you can buy much cheaper motorcycle oil at places like Napa and Lordco instead of buying the expensive Honda stuff.  As long as the oil matches the viscosity and weight of the Honda stuff and is synthetic motorcycle oil, can I just buy the cheaper stuff for the CRF250X?

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I've heard you can buy much cheaper motorcycle oil at places like Napa and Lordco instead of buying the expensive Honda stuff. As long as the oil matches the viscosity and weight of the Honda stuff and is synthetic motorcycle oil, can I just buy the cheaper stuff for the CRF250X?

As long as the oil is rated JASO MA it's good for motorcycle use, of course get the same viscosity that the manual suggests. You can even run some oils that don't have the JASO rating but all JASOs are safe to use. I use Rotella T 15-40 to flush out my bikes after Motor work. It's cheap, (12 bucks for 4 qts or something like that) it's safe to use in dirtbikes even though it doesn't have the JASO rating, and it's good oil in my opinion. I don't use it as main oil but I won't hesitate to run it in a bike if I'm out of motorcycle specific stuff.

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Asking about oil types is like asking about religion or politics<g>

 

As has been said, just make sure you meet the type requirements.  Also, be very sure you don't use any oil that is marked as "energy conserving" or having "friction modifiers" in the tranny.  If you do, your clutch won't like you.

 

Last, the recommended oil is not synthetic.

 

Jim.

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Wow, another oil thread, but I'm eating popcorn and drinking a beer so here goes: :goofy:

 

The engine side is a high speed, high output  engine  so the best is barely adequate.  So for me that means a high quality synthetic oil, not the Honda sh**t.  I have owned several BMWs and CAT/Cummins engines and their oil specs are very specific. BMW specs synthetic Castrol for their normal engines and a true synthetic for the M engines, which are higher speed.   Cat is very specific about oil change intervals based on oil volume, type of oil, and duty cycle.

These newer high speed engines seem to need a thin synthetic oil.

Frequent oil changes are needed to get the wearing junk out of the engine.

 

Tranny/wet clutches are another problem; the gears need lube, the clutch must not slip, and gears shear break down oil viscosity causing notchy shifting.

Newer car oils have additives that can cause clutch slip

ATF oils are gear oils for wet clutches

The trannsy/clutches in my XRs don't do well with Honda oils because of shear breakdown.

Hypoid gear oils WILL cause clutch slippage

Newer car oils can cause clutch slippage because of additives, been there.

Rekluse recomends Shell Rotalla T oil, a fleet service HD engine oil

 

My choices for an engine oil are a good synthetic in the viscosity specified by Honda

 

For the tranny an ATF that provides the clutch action you want:

 

Thinner ATF provides quicker clutch hook up and less drag. e.g. synthetic car ATF

Thicker provides slower hookup  and more drag. e.g. dino car ATF

Dextron ATF provides a smoother clutch action than standard or "F" type ATF.

Most new auto trannies are filled with syn ATF and sealed for life. My motorhome is on a 250K change interval with syn ATF vs 25k with dino ATF.

 

If you want a thicker heavy duty ATF try Allison Syntec, it has revolutionized tranny life in transit buses, garbage trucks, dump trucks, and motorhomes.

 

Beer and popcorn is done!  :cry:

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For the engine side (not clutch) Rotella T-6 is full sythetic that is JASO-MA certified. It's easily better than Honda's oil.   And, it works out to about $5.50 per quart if you buy gallon jugs.  There are even better quality oils, but they will likely cost at least twice as much.

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I think the biggest take away we always come to in these threads is "change it often".

 

Jim.

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For the engine side (not clutch) Rotella T-6 is full sythetic that is JASO-MA certified. It's easily better than Honda's oil.   And, it works out to about $5.50 per quart if you buy gallon jugs.  There are even better quality oils, but they will likely cost at least twice as much.

 

My Honda Owner's Manual says JASO-MA for both engine and tranny.  Since T6 is JASO-MA it should also be suitable for the tranny/clutch.  T6 is a 5W-40 oil and I've used it and the T version (15W-40) in XRs for years with no clutch problems, and the oil last longer than the Honda oil before the shifting gets notchy. I buy mine at Walmart.

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My Honda Owner's Manual says JASO-MA for both engine and tranny.  Since T6 is JASO-MA it should also be suitable for the tranny/clutch.  T6 is a 5W-40 oil and I've used it and the T version (15W-40) in XRs for years with no clutch problems, and the oil last longer than the Honda oil before the shifting gets notchy. I buy mine at Walmart.

 

 If you check though, T6 full synthetic also says that it is an energy conserving oil, which means it has friction modifiers in it and Honda does not recommend that for the tranny side.

 

Jim.

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Well that complicates things a bit since I've had clutch issues with other  syn oils but not Rotella T and T6 oils. To me it would seem that JASO-MA and "Energy Conserving" would be mutually exclusive.  So I checked a jug I bought last summer, maybe they changed the additive package since then.

 

T6 Label.jpg

 

 

JASO-MA on label and no "Energy Conserving" in the API logo.

T6 Label zoom.jpg

Edited by Chuck.

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 I looked right on the Shell web site:

 

http://www.shell.com/rotella/products/t6.html

 

  The second note is that it is "energy saving", but maybe what their doing in the formulation doesn't qualify for an energy saving designation on the label.

 

  it seems though that it's formulated for diesel engines.

 

Jim.

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Thanks for the link.

 

I also don't know what it means.

It says "Energy Saving" with an * (and I can't find the foot note), while the API designation is "Energy Conserving" . Maybe that is why my T6 jug doesn't have "Energy Conserving" in the API label. Maybe the energy saving claim is based on the low temp thinnest of the synthetic version compared to the dino 15W-40 T oil. All of the guidance I've read says don't use an oil that has "Energy Conserving" in the API logo for a wet clutch.  Rekluse says syn oils can cause clutch noise and recommend Rotella T 15W-40 if you have clutch noise. 

 

And yes it is a "Fleet Service" oil designed for fleet operators of both gas and Diesel engines, hence the API ratings of CJ-4 and SM.

 

I also found the chart on shear breakdown of viscosity interesting in that it supports my experience of using other oils and Rotella T & T6 in XR trannies. And as I stated no problems with the clutches.

Edited by Chuck.

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As long as the oil is rated JASO MA it's good for motorcycle use, of course get the same viscosity that the manual suggests. You can even run some oils that don't have the JASO rating but all JASOs are safe to use. I use Rotella T 15-40 to flush out my bikes after Motor work. It's cheap, (12 bucks for 4 qts or something like that) it's safe to use in dirtbikes even though it doesn't have the JASO rating, and it's good oil in my opinion. I don't use it as main oil but I won't hesitate to run it in a bike if I'm out of motorcycle specific stuff.

Ditto.  The last time I checked, I believe it says basically, "we comply with JASO MA", but strictly speaking, Rotella is NOT JASO because they didn't pay the vig.  I've used Honda GN4 on a couple of my bikes and I've used Rotella too.  Both good stuff.  I think the Rotella looks a bit funny, like cloudy . . . but what does that mean?  I can tell you I've met LOTS of guys who use Rotella full time and swear by it. 

 

Also, the original poster said he heard that "synthetic motorcycle oils" can be found at Napa etc on the cheap?  Really?  I shop at Carquest and the only stuff they have that complies are various true motorcycle oils, all costing well $10 per qrt.  All the store brand synthetic stuff has friction reduction technology.  Please advise . . .    I don't mind the GN4 and Rotella gig, but I'd really like to find a can of synthetic motorcycle compliant oil for less than $10.

 

TomJV

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I've run Rotella T6 in my Ninja for 4000 miles with flawless clutch performance. I'm putting it in my 250x when I put it back together, and I expect excellent performance there as well.

Side note: Diesel engines tend to run hotter than gas. This requires an oil that is more resistant to thermal breakdown. I can't speak for resistance to shear breakdown though.

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Ditto.  The last time I checked, I believe it says basically, "we comply with JASO MA", but strictly speaking, Rotella is NOT JASO because they didn't pay the vig.  I've used Honda GN4 on a couple of my bikes and I've used Rotella too.  Both good stuff.  I think the Rotella looks a bit funny, like cloudy . . . but what does that mean?  I can tell you I've met LOTS of guys who use Rotella full time and swear by it. 

 

Also, the original poster said he heard that "synthetic motorcycle oils" can be found at Napa etc on the cheap?  Really?  I shop at Carquest and the only stuff they have that complies are various true motorcycle oils, all costing well $10 per qrt.  All the store brand synthetic stuff has friction reduction technology.  Please advise . . .    I don't mind the GN4 and Rotella gig, but I'd really like to find a can of synthetic motorcycle compliant oil for less than $10.

 

TomJV

 

This T6 label says "Meets the requirements" and lists JASO-MA, while an old T jug that I have has no mention of JASO-MA.

 

 

JASO-MA on label and no "Energy Conserving" in the API logo.

attachicon.gifT6 Label zoom.jpg

 

However tha Rotella T spec sheet has much more info and say JASO-MA

http://www.epc.shell.com/Docs/GPCDOC_Local_TDS_United_States_Shell_Rotella_T_Triple_Protection_15W-40_%28CJ-4%29_%28en-US%29_TDS.pdf

 

So that makes it motorcycle compliant, at least to Shell for wet clutches. But my experience, as well as reports on TT and other forums say it is a very good HD oil because of its performance.  

 

Another option for tranny/clutch only is ATF; it is a gear oil designed for wet clutches, not an engine oil that works with wet clutches.  But Honda recommends an JASO-MA engine oil for both sides, probably because it works and simplifies maintenance.  Which is why I'll probably continue to use the same oil in both sides.

Edited by Chuck.

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FWIW, I use the Rotella T6 in my 2006 Cummins diesel (12 qts per change), and plan to do the same in my 2005 250X (based on recommendations here).  I buy it at Wal-Mart, but found a $5 per-gallon rebate coupon today at Advance Auto, which applies to anywhere you buy it.

Edited by jd_kidd
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Chevron Delo 15w40 can't be beat. Use it in every engine I have except for the weedeater.

 

Over many years I used Chevron Delo in my cars and boats, but Shell Rotella at Walmart is now cheaper than my Jobber so I switched.

There are three major Fleet Service oil providers in the US; Chevron Delo (who developed the fleet service oils with Detroit Diesel), Shell Rotella, and Mobil Delvac. What ever is readily available in your area is good.

 

I run Rotalla T6 on both sides in my CRF250X, and in my XR. I use Valvoline Dextron VI synthetic ATF in the tranny of my Honda Montesa Trials bike for its smooth clutch action, probably could run it in my X but Rekluse recommends a JASO-MA rated oil, so it's T6.

 

On edit: The Fleet service oils use a high quality base stock and an additive package to provide long engine life for fleet operators. The T is dino based oil. the T6 is synthetic.

Edited by Chuck.

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Yep. Delo now $12.57 a gallon, Delvac is $11.23 at WalMart. Both exceptional quality. Can't understand the ridiculous prices some still pay for "boutique" oils.

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