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Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? #5377753 03/16/20 11:31 AM
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jongies3 Offline OP
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Have a old '67 F250 HighBoy that has a 390 out of a 1968 vehicle. Far as I know it's stock, and runs on a 2 barrell carburetor so it's not making gobs of power. I've been running 15W-40 Rotella in it, but as I understand it, the zinc levels have dropped substantially in the new formula so should I run something else? Getting ready to change the oil and wanting to know if the Rotella is still safe to run or if I should go with something else. This is a flat tappet cam engine so it needs oil with lots of zinc in it I've been told and HDEO's used to be the ticket but not sure if they are anymore.

Thanks all!

67 ford.jpg

2004 Toyota Tacoma 3.4 V6: Mobil 1 AFE 0W-30, FRAM PH3614 filter
2003 Buick Park Avenue Ultra S/C 3.8 V6: PYB 5W-30, FRAM PH3387 filter
2013 Honda 400EX ATV: Mobil 1 Racing 4t 10W-40, OEM filter
Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5377758 03/16/20 11:41 AM
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skyactiv Online Content
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Look for a full saps Euro oil. Castrol 0W40 will work fine. Don't let the 0 part scare you, it'll just provide faster lubrication to the upper part of the engine which is a plus.


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Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5377775 03/16/20 12:10 PM
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JeffKeryk Online Content
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A stock engine is not so dependent on Zinc, especially if the cam springs are stock.
A good 10w30 would work well.
There are oils with elevated Zinc levels (like 1200 PPM) but those are more for higher spring pressures.
There are also ZDDP additives, if you wanna play chemist.

ZDDP Additive

If I ever pull my old Vette or Oldsey apart again I will stab a hydraulic roller and be done with it.


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Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5377777 03/16/20 12:11 PM
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379KITTY Offline
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Valvoline VR1 prob easiest to find. Brad Penn, and Mobil 1 had a 15w50 formulation also all with higher ZDDP.

Last edited by 379KITTY; 03/16/20 12:13 PM.
Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5377790 03/16/20 12:26 PM
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skyactiv Online Content
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I've seen Valvoline VR1 10W30 at every Napa store and second it if you wanna use a 10W30.


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Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5377799 03/16/20 12:31 PM
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JHZR2 Offline
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I’d get one of the many zinc additives and just done it up a bit. There are some that are SDL and some that are something else (polymer or ester as I recall). Unless it’s being heavily used, I’d not worry about it too much. There’s nome,is Simon system or whatnot so I doubt an OD is concerning...

Nice truck!

Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5377827 03/16/20 12:53 PM
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Can you still get CK-4 Rotella T5 10W-30, I'd use it but I need a 5w30 for them cold nights in my 89 5.7. I've pretty much settled on Valvoline Advanced since it still uses the upper limits of ZDDP and has moly and titanium to help. A lot of newer oils are using the lower limits of ZDDP which scares me for that engine.

Should mention the 5.7 is a crate engine with around 19k on it.

Last edited by Duffyjr; 03/16/20 01:03 PM.

89 GMC Sierra Advanced 5w30/51036 Wix
08 Lucerne CX Advanced 5w30/1040 Gold
18 Toro Super Recycler T5 10w30
Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5377841 03/16/20 01:05 PM
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cool truck, can you post more pics to share?

Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5377870 03/16/20 01:43 PM
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bullwinkle Offline
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Those FE blocks are pretty near indestructible (& really heavy, we rebuilt my brother's 360FE out of his '68 F-100 Ranger back in the day, almost couldn't lift it with the crane we had then), any 10W30 will work, I like HDEOs like Rotella Triple Protection, T5, even Delo 10W30 or 15W30 would be awesome in it. You really don't have enough spring pressure to hurt flat tappets, & CK-4 still has some ZDDP, could always add some Rislone ZDDP or similar to it if it makes you feel better.


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Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5378003 03/16/20 05:30 PM
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The diesel oils tend to be very robust and clean. That seems like the best of the easy choices in today's environment. What did the ZDDP drop to? Possibly changing brands to one that still has 1000PPM?


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Re: Oil for 1968 Ford 390FE V8 engine? [Re: jongies3] #5378025 03/16/20 06:06 PM
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Any of the diesel oils on this list will have >1000PPM of phosphorus:

https://parts.ford.com/content/dam/..._Motor_Oils_Meeting_Ford_WSSM2c171F1.pdf


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