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Steen's C Synthetic Oil #4614128
12/25/17 06:49 PM
12/25/17 06:49 PM
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 304
Rochester Hills, MI
harbor Offline OP
harbor  Offline OP
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 304
Rochester Hills, MI
Anyone recall this oil from a So Cal company in the 60's? I had a Steen Tacquito mini-bike as a kid, and some holiday discussions with relatives prompted me to do some research on the company. The oil was primarily for go-carts & bikes, and they claim it to be the 1st synthetic in the U.S. Here's a blurb from a lengthy article on the company relating to the oil:

"This is the history of STEENS Chemical and Lubricants Company. A So-Cal company in the 60s that (by all accounts) made and sold the first synthetic oil in America, not to mention creating one of the greatest 60s mini bike brands of all time, the .John Steen created the company in the late 50s by selling used speed equipment andthe synthetic oil formulated by his father in the 40s while working for Standard Oil as a chemist. Prior to this in the early 50s, John Steen was an off road motorcycle rider. John rode with legendary riders Ed Kretz Jr., Cliff Coleman, Dave and Bud Ekin and Steve McQueen and others. These are some of the guys who created the Motocross sport on the west cost. Around this time, Johns Dad passed away leaving him his formula for synthetic oil. (One side note: You would think that with Johns Dad working for Standard Oil, they would own the formula for synthetic oil. Well they did, but they told him that they were in the oil business not the synthetic oil business and he could have the formula. So Johns Father took it.) John talked to Union Carbide and worked out a deal to start making small amounts of this synthetic oil and asked people he knew to try it."

This is the link to the full article:

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Re: Steen's C Synthetic Oil [Re: harbor] #4614147
12/25/17 07:14 PM
12/25/17 07:14 PM
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 12,582
CT8 Offline
CT8  Offline
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 12,582
I used Steen C chemical lube in my 1968 Yamaha 125 twin untill I sold it in 1971.

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2018 Ford F350 6.2
Re: Steen's C Synthetic Oil [Re: CT8] #4614352
12/26/17 04:33 AM
12/26/17 04:33 AM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 242
Reno, Nevada
Langanobob Offline
Langanobob  Offline
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 242
Reno, Nevada
I used Steen C in my West Bend 700 powered mini-bike. Friends with karts used it in their McCulloch Mac 10 engines. Their were lots of aftermarket tuning parts available for the McCulloch chainsaw engines and McCulloch came out with special kart engines. They dominated kart racing, I dont know what RPMs they were running but they screamed. Made my West Bend sound like a lawnmower. Highly modified, even with Steen C they would seize up pretty often. McCulloch had an advanced port design that I believe he borrowedfrom Stihl when he worked with a Canadian group that reverse engineered Stihl chainsaws when they became unavailable just before WWII. Interesting history.

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