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#4477085 - 08/02/17 03:27 AM E85 and motor oil
Spang Offline


Registered: 08/01/17
Posts: 5
Loc: Sweden
I have a general question, what motor oil do you recommend when using E85 fuel in old V8 type street/strip engines?
I am thinking of API-class or something like this, not specific brands.
Is there a good “one size fits all” oil out there?

Chevy BB 454-632ci
Flat tappet cam/Roller-cam
NA, Boost, NOS

15W/40 or 20W/50?

1250-2000 miles oil change intervals.

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#4477104 - 08/02/17 05:12 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: Spang]
DoubleWasp Offline


Registered: 05/21/12
Posts: 5236
Loc: Fort Lauderdale, FL
VR1 20-50.

Talk to the engine builder of course, but your not going to find a more appropriate oil for a nasty BBC running an alternative fuel, unless you go really exotic.
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#4477123 - 08/02/17 06:19 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: DoubleWasp]
Spang Offline


Registered: 08/01/17
Posts: 5
Loc: Sweden
I build my own engines.
I have been using E85 and "gasoline oil" a few years without any problem.
But now i have had an oil problem with a supercharged engine.
The intake gaskets were leaking into the crankcase, and some E85 got into the oil.
Many camshaft lobes show signs of bad wear now.
Maybe I can use it a few more miles, but it needs to be replaced soon.
(I wonder how the bearings are? Good oil pressure and the engine sound was good. I will check it when I replace the cam.)

So, I was thinking if there is an oil out there that will keep lubricate the engine with some E85 in it? Not much E85 of cause, but a better oil than "gasoline oil".

I believe this engine had not got so bad if i been running gasoline on it?

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#4477124 - 08/02/17 06:23 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: Spang]
Spang Offline


Registered: 08/01/17
Posts: 5
Loc: Sweden
Thank you DoubleWasp.
I missed to read your oil recommendation!
I will google it right now.

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#4477127 - 08/02/17 06:33 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: Spang]
billt460 Offline


Registered: 03/30/15
Posts: 4388
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Originally Posted By: Spang
So, I was thinking if there is an oil out there that will keep lubricate the engine with some E85 in it? Not much E85 of cause, but a better oil than "gasoline oil".


Not to go off topic. But I have the flight operation manual for the P-47 Thunderbolt WW II fighter. On one of the pages it mentioned a "Fuel Dilution Switch", for cold weather operation in Europe during Winter months. By holding this switch on for a prescribed number of seconds, it would deliberately dilute the engine oil with gasoline, to thin it in order to aid cold weather starting. Supposedly this fuel would evaporate off when the Pratt & Whitney R-2800 radial engine got up to operating temperature. It didn't damage the engine in any way. So I wonder why the same wouldn't hold true for an automotive engine with fuel diluted in the oil?

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#4477149 - 08/02/17 07:33 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: billt460]
Spang Offline


Registered: 08/01/17
Posts: 5
Loc: Sweden
Thin oil with gasoline, never heard of that before. Interesting!
But if you do this with E85 and wrong oil you may loose lubricating.

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#4477175 - 08/02/17 07:57 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: Spang]
billt460 Offline


Registered: 03/30/15
Posts: 4388
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Originally Posted By: Spang
Thin oil with gasoline, never heard of that before. Interesting!
But if you do this with E85 and wrong oil you may loose lubricating.


That may very well be true. I have no idea of the difference between 130 / 160 Av Gas, as opposed to E-85 Ethanol. As far as any lubrication value is concerned. I know that Av Gas is heavily leaded, even today. And lead has a certain amount of lubrication quality.

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#4477227 - 08/02/17 09:02 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: Spang]
MichiganMadMan Offline


Registered: 07/18/11
Posts: 250
Loc: SE Michigan
Just out of curiosity, what are you doing with a big block Chevrolet in Sweden? My memory of fuel prices there was that they were "breathtaking". A supercharged big block is going to drink fuel like a fish.
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#4477268 - 08/02/17 09:50 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: Spang]
BrocLuno Offline


Registered: 09/06/15
Posts: 5512
Loc: Kalifornia Kollective
Yeah, but the grins are epic laugh

Redline oil here is what a lot of alcohol dragster guys run. Over there, Motul 300V would be easier to find and cheaper.

E-85 cars are an unintended blessing of the green crowd. Alcohol motors on the street, yah whoo laugh

Ask the Speedway bike motor builders what they are running. They have alcohol getting in the oil all the time ...
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#4477282 - 08/02/17 10:04 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: MichiganMadMan]
Spang Offline


Registered: 08/01/17
Posts: 5
Loc: Sweden
We are many crazy gearheads here in Sweden.
Fuel price is about $5 per gallon E85 and gasoline $6,70.
Racing fuel $25.

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#4477326 - 08/02/17 11:13 AM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: billt460]
turtlevette Offline


Registered: 12/24/13
Posts: 3560
Loc: Massachusetts
Originally Posted By: billt460
Originally Posted By: Spang
So, I was thinking if there is an oil out there that will keep lubricate the engine with some E85 in it? Not much E85 of cause, but a better oil than "gasoline oil".


Not to go off topic. But I have the flight operation manual for the P-47 Thunderbolt WW II fighter. On one of the pages it mentioned a "Fuel Dilution Switch", for cold weather operation in Europe during Winter months. By holding this switch on for a prescribed number of seconds, it would deliberately dilute the engine oil with gasoline, to thin it in order to aid cold weather starting. Supposedly this fuel would evaporate off when the Pratt & Whitney R-2800 radial engine got up to operating temperature. It didn't damage the engine in any way. So I wonder why the same wouldn't hold true for an automotive engine with fuel diluted in the oil?


Thank you, info like this makes the board worth reading.
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#4477363 - 08/02/17 12:07 PM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: Spang]
mpersell Offline


Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 337
Loc: Texas
E85 ethanol likes to suck up a lot of water out of the air. The GF5 rating is said to deal with the water. I don't know that you'll get the dampening, hths requirements for the fuel dilution you're talking about from the typical GF5 rated oil.
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#4477411 - 08/02/17 12:50 PM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: billt460]
440Magnum Offline


Registered: 02/01/09
Posts: 8754
Loc: Texas
Originally Posted By: billt460
Originally Posted By: Spang
So, I was thinking if there is an oil out there that will keep lubricate the engine with some E85 in it? Not much E85 of cause, but a better oil than "gasoline oil".


Not to go off topic. But I have the flight operation manual for the P-47 Thunderbolt WW II fighter. On one of the pages it mentioned a "Fuel Dilution Switch", for cold weather operation in Europe during Winter months. By holding this switch on for a prescribed number of seconds, it would deliberately dilute the engine oil with gasoline, to thin it in order to aid cold weather starting. Supposedly this fuel would evaporate off when the Pratt & Whitney R-2800 radial engine got up to operating temperature. It didn't damage the engine in any way. So I wonder why the same wouldn't hold true for an automotive engine with fuel diluted in the oil?


Pretty much all the allied aircraft had that option. I've seen it in manuals for the P-38 (Allison V1710) also. But you gotta remember, those engines used a pretty different oil chemistry than a modern car. Virtually ZERO dispersants, and no ZDDP. Almost a straight mineral oil. The engine internals were designed to survive all that- roller cam followers, and different bearing alloys (a lot more silver) than even modern Babbit bearings, let alone the more common aluminum bearings found now. You can't really compare one to the other.
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#4477597 - 08/02/17 05:03 PM Re: E85 and motor oil [Re: Spang]
Oldmoparguy1 Offline


Registered: 01/21/05
Posts: 5612
Loc: Charlotte, NC
Prolly way OT...... In northern Michigan Back in the 30's, 40's and early 50's, our old chevys with the babbitted dipper rods called for 20 in the summer, 10 in the winter and if it got below 0f, recommended to add a quart or 2 of kerosene to the oil. That was in northern MI, and IIRC, there was no winter rated oil until the 50's.
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