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#728323 - 08/29/05 03:01 AM 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
JR Offline


Registered: 08/08/04
Posts: 920
Loc: Michigan born but my heart bel...
I have recently aquirred a 84 VW Rabbit with the 1.6 litre diesel and 4 speed stick. It has 112,500 miles, bought with 110,000 miles, has had M1 5W-30 and Parts Master filter since 110,000. It has only used less then a pint of oil since I have owned it. Added M1 T&S 5W-40 about 250 miles ago. It doesn't leak any oil. I plan on dumping it at 113,000 miles. I was wondering what syn. oil to use and how long to keep it. I would also like to know what filter is best to use.

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#728324 - 08/29/05 04:11 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
wavinwayne Offline


Registered: 01/06/05
Posts: 7519
Loc: North Alabama
Unlike some here at BITOG, I am a fan of Mobil 1 products. So, I went to Mobil's website & their recommended syn. oils for your VW diesel are M1 10w30 & M1 EP 10w30. Their recommended oil filter is M1-301.

FWIW, I run the M1-301 on my '00 GTI 1.8T, & I have nothing but praise for it. The thing is absolutely huge; Actually I have no flippin' clue if it's filtering any better than the OEM-size filter did, but it sure does make me feel good. [Smile]

In fact, the M1-301 is even bigger than the Baldwin oil filter that is on one of my Father-in-Law's Kenworth big rigs. Take that you puny OEM-sized filters. [Razz]

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#728325 - 08/29/05 04:20 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
FowVay Online   content


Registered: 06/02/02
Posts: 2165
Loc: Southeastern USA
I'd use a diesel specific oil such as Shell Rotella-T 5W-40. It's cheap and a very good quality oil.

The tiny VW diesel sips fuel and this helps to control the contaminants that are deposited in the oil.

If this were my car I'd go on-line and buy Mahle filters from any of the German car parts places and I'd buy several at a time. This little car goes 7500 - 10,000 miles nicely on oils such as the Rotella-T synthetic. You can spend much more on a gallon of oil but it really isn't necessary.

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#728326 - 09/01/05 07:07 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
Willy_G Offline


Registered: 05/25/05
Posts: 350
Loc: Indianapolis, IN
I ran M1 15w50 in my Rabbit diesels, before the hydro cracked 15w40s showed up.

Up there, I would go with a syth. 5w40 winter, conventional 15w40 summer. Any major brand will work fine...don't sweat the small stuff. Oh yea, OE filters are nice, like Mann & Mahle, but anything OTHER THAN the orange can will work fine, too.

I would LOVE to get my hands on 1 or 2 nice Rabbit diesels, now-a-days! They are efficient, easy to fix, but a bid slow...but who cares!

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#728327 - 09/01/05 08:16 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
McKittrick Offline


Registered: 06/01/05
Posts: 189
Loc: Central Texas USA
I ran Rotella T 15W-40 in my Jetta for years, but we never get cold here. Make sure your glow plug system is working well, and keep a couple extra fusible links and a phillips screwdriver in the glove compartment. You might need to replace that fusible link some cold day, because even in texas winters they do not like to start if the glow plugs are not getting juice.

I also ran stanadyne fuel treatment, 4 oz per 15 gallons rate, seems to reduce smoking some and supposedly lubricates the injection pump.

Good Luck

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#728328 - 09/02/05 02:40 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
DaveJ Offline


Registered: 11/26/03
Posts: 119
Loc: Auburn WA
[Off Topic!] I remember a large car mag like Car and Driver or another did a 80's Rabbit Diesel buildup with a turbo. They drove across the whole Canadan frontier at over 100 MPH. I too would run Rotella T 5W40. DaveJ

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#728329 - 09/07/05 06:20 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
JR Offline


Registered: 08/08/04
Posts: 920
Loc: Michigan born but my heart bel...
I hear that these engines like a heavy oil. I was told thinner oils over time (100k plus of use) can cause increase wear of a part in the timing belt area (injector pump?) and will cause the belt to wear and break without warning. If this is true is a 5W-40 to light. I had M1 EP 15W-50 pop up in my thoughts as a canadite. If I remember rite M1 EP 15W-50 carries a CF diesel rating. Would CF be suficent for these diesels.

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#728330 - 09/12/05 09:40 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
McKittrick Offline


Registered: 06/01/05
Posts: 189
Loc: Central Texas USA
There is some concern of wear in the injector pump area if the belt is too tight causing a loss of prime on the pump. If you have to crank and crank on the starter to get it to start you might have this problem. There is not a repair for this problem short of replacing the injector pump, about $400-500 for the part.

I did replace my camshaft seal when I did the timing belt, this was a cheap part and kept the engine oil from leaking out onto the timing belt.
Just used an oversize socket to drive the seal on.

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#728331 - 09/20/05 07:04 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
TexasTDI Offline


Registered: 09/16/02
Posts: 371
Loc: TYLER, TEXAS
I use Amsoil AME 15w-40 (full synthetic) in my 1991 Jetta 1.6D with 252k miles. Been using OEM Mann filters but I'm about to give Hastings (Amsoil) filters a try.

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#728332 - 09/20/05 05:04 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
ChiTDI Offline


Registered: 12/19/03
Posts: 2057
Loc: Chicago IL
Rotella T 5w40 or the more expensive M1 T&SUV 5w40 w/5000 - 7500 mi OCI would serve you well.
If there is no turbo, you could probably use HDEO 15w40 - Delvac or Chevron Delo for a lot cheaper. Tougher to crank in the winter though.
Good luck with it and enjoy the fuel mileage $$$.

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#728333 - 09/20/05 06:52 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
TexasTDI Offline


Registered: 09/16/02
Posts: 371
Loc: TYLER, TEXAS
quote:
Originally posted by ChiTDI:
Rotella T 5w40 or the more expensive M1 T&SUV 5w40 w/5000 - 7500 mi OCI would serve you well.
If there is no turbo, you could probably use HDEO 15w40 - Delvac or Chevron Delo for a lot cheaper. Tougher to crank in the winter though.
Good luck with it and enjoy the fuel mileage $$$.

VW recommeds 6 months / 7500 miles on 1.6D with dino oil, and 6 months / 5000 miles on 1.6TD with dino oil.

Using synthetic oil, you can go even longer on oil changes. I'm using a 12 month / 10,000 mile OCI in my 91 Jetta 1.6D, same as the TDI, because I'm using a full synthetic oil.

BTW - Dino oil is not cheaper than synthetic. Dino oil is more expensive. Why? Because you have to change your oil more often.

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#728334 - 11/23/05 01:52 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
JR Offline


Registered: 08/08/04
Posts: 920
Loc: Michigan born but my heart bel...
I will be doing a trip in the spring to vegas and florida from michigan. The last oil service I used Mobil Delvac 1300 Super and a Purelator Filter. I will do a oil service before the trip. I would like to choose a syn oil and filter that would allow me to go ten thousand plus miles. Could you give me a sugestions.

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#728335 - 11/23/05 06:20 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
moribundman Offline


Registered: 06/02/03
Posts: 23591
Any VW 505.00-rated oil will work. I'd stick with the M1 5W-40 anyway if consumption is acceptable. Otherwise go for a 15W-40 like Chevron DELO 400.

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#728336 - 11/23/05 06:22 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
bmwtechguy Offline


Registered: 06/15/04
Posts: 2524
Loc: South Carolina
As far as what is readily available and not too expensive, I like the 5W-40 Mobil 1 synthetic at WM for about $20 and some change for the 5 qt. jug. Great diesel or gas engine oil for year round use. Also at WM I have used the Shell Rotella 5W-40 synthetic, a less expensive (Group III), but still a quality alternative. Costs $14+ here right now for one gallon. Was only 11 or 12 dollars a gal. just a couple years ago. The Schaeffers 5W-40 or the 15W-40 are both great oils and priced right, but you have to contend with shipping and plan a little ahead. Same goes for Amsoil 15W-40 oils. I don't think you can go wrong with any of these synthetics, and you can get good value for your money if you run about 10k miles with a good filter such as Amsoil or Mobil 1. Upsize to SDF15 or M1 301 to help with the longer OCI, if you have the room. Napa Gold/ Motorcraft FL1A/ Purolator equivalents would be my second choice for an oil filter. Check out the new Amsoil EaO series filter. Would probably be great for an extended OCI. Seems like it would have great flow, and would filter very well for a long time.

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#728337 - 11/23/05 05:39 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
TexasTDI Offline


Registered: 09/16/02
Posts: 371
Loc: TYLER, TEXAS
quote:
I will be doing a trip in the spring to vegas and florida from michigan. The last oil service I used Mobil Delvac 1300 Super and a Purelator Filter. I will do a oil service before the trip. I would like to choose a syn oil and filter that would allow me to go ten thousand plus miles. Could you give me a sugestions.


I use Amsoil AME 15w-40 full synthetic oil and OEM oil filter (will be changing to Hastings oil filter at next oil change).

But any full synthetic oil should safely provide you a 12 month/10k mile OCI.

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#728338 - 11/28/05 04:52 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
JR Offline


Registered: 08/08/04
Posts: 920
Loc: Michigan born but my heart bel...
bmwtechguy I see you stated that MC FL-1A would be an ok filter. I know they had a 3/4-16 thread, and are the same size as the filter for this engine right down to a tee except for the by-pass valve psi setting. I have about two dozen Super Tech ST43's that are the same as the MC FL-300 filters. I was wondering if I was just running a good old 15W-40 dino hdeo and planning to dump at 3K would these shorter half quart filters be up to the challenge.

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#728339 - 11/28/05 07:13 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
bmwtechguy Offline


Registered: 06/15/04
Posts: 2524
Loc: South Carolina
IMHO I believe you would be fine with these filters that you have left, using your described intervals. I've never really payed too much attention to the exact bypass valve psi settings from one filter to another and have never had any problems. I'm sure that it is worth considering for some applications. As far as a value priced HDEO, you may want to consider the Castrol Tection Extra which is available right now through end of Dec. at Advance Auto Parts for 3 gallons for $15. In addition to that, 2 rebates per household of $6 each knocks it down to $3 a gallon for what seems like a really stout oil- holds viscosity well, etc. I am using it in all my old stuff and farm engines and is working well. Check the rebates/sales threads on BITOG for the link to BP/ Castrol rebate PDF. Even without the rebate, you cannot beat it.

If you plan to start and drive that car when it gets really cold, especially on dino HDEO 15W-40, I hope you have some way of warming the block or park in a garage, etc. Otherwise, I would seriously think about Synthetic Rotella 5W-40 especially during the coldest part of MI winter for at least a 5K mile OCI. You trying to use up those ST filters that you got for a buck a piece when they went on clearance?

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#728340 - 11/29/05 04:31 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
JR Offline


Registered: 08/08/04
Posts: 920
Loc: Michigan born but my heart bel...
thanks for the tip on the castrol

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#728341 - 12/01/05 09:11 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
McKittrick Offline


Registered: 06/01/05
Posts: 189
Loc: Central Texas USA
I use Mann filters bought from autohausaz.com for about $5 (free shipping with over $50 purchase), very good solid filter with the correct bypass setting. 86 Jetta continues to deliver over 46 mpg. Good stout little cars.

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#728342 - 12/06/05 05:28 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
elfperformance Offline


Registered: 12/05/05
Posts: 28
Loc: Paragould, Arkansas
Here is what I would recommend.

ELF EXCELLIUM LDX 5W40

Synthetic technology multigrade oil developed to cover the most stingent requirements of both gas and diesel engine. Particularly suited to Turbo charged, multi valved, direct injection, 8 cylinder. Can be used in most severe operating conditions and all seasons.

SPECIFICATIONS:
API: SL/CF
ACEA: A3/B3/B4
VOLKSWAGON/ AUDI: 502.00/505.00
MERCEDES-BENZ: 229.1 229.3
BMW Long Life
PORSCHE
General Motors: GM-LL-B-025

Good Luck! - Hardy

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#728343 - 01/13/06 01:32 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
Mat_31 Offline


Registered: 01/09/06
Posts: 7
Loc: Berlin
Just a normal 15w40 or 10w40 for winter.

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#728344 - 02/06/06 12:01 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
Brons2 Offline


Registered: 09/16/03
Posts: 2484
Loc: Austin, Texas
What about Esso XD-3 0w40 for Michigan winters? It's diesel rated and super cheap over the border in Canada, so I hear.

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#728345 - 02/06/06 12:14 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
JR Offline


Registered: 08/08/04
Posts: 920
Loc: Michigan born but my heart bel...
Mat_31 all I have used so far is a 15W-40. I have seen several mornings that were close to zero degrees F and even a few below the zero mark. It has fired every morning and started right up. So I know that it can and will start and run just fine with a 15W-40. But it feels better having something thinner in it. You know it just gives ya that warm feeling that your doing all you can to protect your precious little baby.
Brons2 thank you for that suggestion. I never give a thought to going over the border for a good syn. Thank you.

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#728346 - 03/10/06 03:12 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
jamesn Offline


Registered: 03/27/05
Posts: 323
Loc: iowa
great find on the VW diesel. i was bidding on a vw diesel caddy (pickup) with 140k miles. i had 1300 to spend on it at the time and thought it was mine. i was quite wrong. it went for over 2200. i should have called the bank and got that sucker. maybe next time. my family had a 1980 rabbit diesel. my dad did about 140 miles a day to work and back. we sold it in 86 with 230k miles on it. great car.

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#728347 - 03/10/06 06:44 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
John K Offline


Registered: 09/06/03
Posts: 943
Loc: Loveland, Ohio
I had 2 81 Rabbit diesels, and thought I'd drive them forever but my daughter totaled both of them! Surprisingly I found the seats very comfortable for my bad back and could tolerate long trips in them.
As far as oil filters go, I don't remember the brands, but these engines develop pretty high oil pressure. I used to get oil pressure light when I drove thru puddles, so put a 0-100 psi gauge on it, and when the engine was cold it would go well past 100! Oil light coming on was case of water splashing up on the op sender. Knew some guys that blew gaskets out of their oil filters.
Hated the 4 speed tranny, wished I had the 5. Big gap between 3-4.

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#728348 - 03/12/06 07:25 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
JR Offline


Registered: 08/08/04
Posts: 920
Loc: Michigan born but my heart bel...
Jamesn and John K I was wondering if you could tell me what brand(s) and weight of oils you used and what was your oil change intervals where.

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#728349 - 03/13/06 06:13 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
John K Offline


Registered: 09/06/03
Posts: 943
Loc: Loveland, Ohio
Well, that was a long time ago....I think I bought whatever was on sale, usually Pennzoil or Castrol, and might even have used Fram filters back then! Don't remember what kind of filters that some had trouble with blowing the gasket out, but used to make sure the filter was on really tight!
One of the cars I bought new, the other when it had 115,000 miles on it. The used one had the filter on so tight I went back and asked the guy I bought it from how he put it on, seems he machined an aluminum socket wrench at work to make sure he had it tight enough!
When I put the mechanical pressure gauge on it I had visions of black oil spraying all over me and the interior when it went past 100. Warm I think the pressure would drop to 60 or so? Usually changed oil around 3000 miles.
I used to keep some kerosene on hand for winter weather and would add a gallon or two when the temperature got below 15 or so. I think winterized diesel fuel already has it mixed in, but I was warned about some places didn't sell winterized fuel, the K would lower the mileage and doesn't have the lubrication qualities of #2 but it never failed to start, even below zero.

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#728350 - 03/13/06 06:16 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
John K Offline


Registered: 09/06/03
Posts: 943
Loc: Loveland, Ohio
Don't remember what weight oil I used, whatever the manual called for, I assume back then it was 10W-30? Could have been 10W-40 too. I checked my records, I usually save everything, but I think I finally threw that stuff away....

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#728351 - 03/21/06 09:52 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
jamesn Offline


Registered: 03/27/05
Posts: 323
Loc: iowa
i dont remember what filter we used, knowing my dad he bought a few cases of the VW filters. we had the local co-op change the oil avery 3-4k or so. we used 10-40 chevron delo diesel oil in it. it got to where it burned about a quart a week the way we drove it. the only way to get anywhere in that thing was to full throttle it ande shift about as fast as you could through the first 3-4 gears. garbage trucks and kids on bicycles would pass you. lousy car to pick up chicks in. but cheap to run.

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#728352 - 03/22/06 08:31 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
Volvohead Offline


Registered: 05/25/05
Posts: 3428
Loc: SE Pa
I owned one of these, a 1980 model. It liked a 40 weight best, especially in the summer, but did just fine on a 30 as well. One machinist who worked on them preferred them over MB diesels and recommended a straight 40, but you'd have cold cranking issues if it were really cold. In the winter, I'd run regular 10w-30 Pennzoil without any problems. The battery took up quite a bit of the tiny engine compartment if I recall.

I think it did 0-60 mph eventually (with the AC on it was a real struggle at times). But with a few tweaks it was actually a fun little car in the twisties. And 60 mpg was quite a benefit.

The bigger question is whether it was a Westmoreland Rabbit or one from the Fatherland. The former needed a lot more work to run well.

The problem I've always had with post-beetle VWs is that they are just wonderful cars until they break the first time. That seems to set off a chain reaction and you're always fixing something thereafter.

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#728353 - 03/27/06 10:31 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
John K Offline


Registered: 09/06/03
Posts: 943
Loc: Loveland, Ohio
Another thing about these cars is they had very weak bumpers! It didn't take much of a hit to do a lot of damage, as my daughter managed to prove!!! I think the 0-60 time was like 18 seconds or so? It was a strong runner though. When teaching my daughter to drive a stick I told her that she didn't have to worry about stalling it when starting out, it was almost impossible to do, but she proved me wrong. I think it could climb hills at idle, but didn't try it out. I drove from Cincinnati to Atlanta (500 miles) without having to stop to fill it up, and it only had a 10 gallon tank.

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#728354 - 04/13/06 09:12 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
Volvoist Offline


Registered: 04/12/06
Posts: 8
Loc: Claymont, Delaware
I own several Volvo D24/D24T diesels. They have a VW/Audi 6 cylinder, same internals as the rabbit. I have been using Mobil 1 5w30 for years. I have seen no wear, meaning no valve train wear, no valve adjustments and no cylinder wall wear when a head was pulled on several Volvo diesels. I am curious to know if Rotella 5w40 does that too. I'd stick with the Mobil 1 5w30, it seems to work great! Plus it cleans the rings and helps compression!

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#728355 - 04/17/06 06:53 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 33455
Loc: New Jersey
wow thats thin oil for a diesel! And not an optimized add pack either.

Glad youve had such success... its a testament to M1.

I wouldnt run it in my MB diesels though.

JMH

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#728356 - 04/17/06 04:29 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
Volvoist Offline


Registered: 04/12/06
Posts: 8
Loc: Claymont, Delaware
Though it doesn't have the additives, it works! They run better and cleaner and no wear. I have used it in many Volvo diesels for hundreds of thousands of miles as have a lot of people I know with great success.

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#728357 - 04/17/06 06:02 PM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
D Stewart Offline


Registered: 07/01/04
Posts: 76
Loc: Halifax, N.S., Canada
I just bought a totally rebuilt 1981 Rabbit pickup (AKA: Caddy)with a 1.6 turbodiesel and a 5-speed. Can anyone say "Massive fuel mileage"?. I changed the transmission to Redline MTL and will run Rotella synthetic once the engine is broken in on it's present Rotella T.

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#728358 - 07/04/06 05:00 AM Re: 1984 VW Rabbit Diesel Oil?
carock Offline


Registered: 03/05/06
Posts: 433
Loc: California
I have had a lot of experience working on the Rabbit diesels. We used to run Redline 10-40W with great results. Redline now makes a diesel specific 15-40W that will probably be even better. I did not know about bypass filters at the time, but every diesel should have one. All the real engineering research shows that they will double the life of your motor. Why not pay $200 for that? See the bypass filter section for more info. I do not sell bypass filters,but they are great.

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