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Thread: Benefits of synthetic oil?

  1. #1
    Hammam
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    Benefits of synthetic oil?

    I know, I know... But I swear I've been searching for this precise question for countless minutes without finding. So, please forgive me, and here goes: in what should synthetic oil be better (for a 1200 RT at least) than mineral of half-synthetic? If it is actually better for some reason or reasons, I want to make sure to know if and when I ask my dealer to change for it.

    Thank you for your patience and knowledge.

  2. #2
    TravelsWithBarley.com
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    Not sure where you are, but here in Vermont I'll ride down to the single digits above zero provided the roads are clear. Synthetic flows better at those temps.
    '07 R1200GS for solo rides
    '10 R1200GSA with Hannigan dual sport sidecar for rides with Barley

  3. #3
    Hammam
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    Quote Originally Posted by glenfiddich View Post
    Not sure where you are, but here in Vermont I'll ride down to the single digits above zero provided the roads are clear. Synthetic flows better at those temps.
    I'm in Montreal (Stowe is one my favorite riding destinations) and I usually ride until early December at around 2?? or 3?? C. Better flowing at low temperaures is already one good thing to know. Thanks.

  4. #4
    IBA #44567 Ken F's Avatar
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    An internet search will give you more information than you can absorb.

    Off the top of my head (which I myself sometimes question of late), Synthetic resists break down due to high temps, thus can be run for extended mileage.
    Flows better in cold conditions, does not evaporate as easily as dino oil, resistance to oxidation & sludge, reports of longer engine life, and more horsepower in
    certain engines.

    Ken
    IBA #44567
    "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."
    -Albert Eienstein

  5. #5
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    If you're concerned about heat or cold, synthetics hands down.

    If you're concerned about oil consumption, synthetics hands down.

    If you're concerned about the cost of motor oil, synthetics hands down (change it less often safely).

    If you care not at all about anything, dino will pour right in, too.
    Kent Christensen
    21482
    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

  6. #6
    Hammam
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    Thank you for these eloquent comments. So, synthetic it will be. Now, is 13,000 kms (8,000 miles) considered enough break-in to go to synthetic?

  7. #7
    Jeff cookie's Avatar
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    Smile

    I don't know, but I use Amsoil and change it every year or 6.000 miles. It really isn't much more than BMW oil. My 08 RT gets spoiled just like my wife.
    Jeff Anderson
    I ride a 2008 R1200RT

  8. #8
    2011 R1200RT ka5ysy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hammam View Post
    ... Now, is 13,000 kms (8,000 miles) considered enough break-in to go to synthetic?
    Yes it is. In actual fact you could have used it from zero mileage as a lot of high performance automobile engines do these days. The only consideration is that a lot of people, me included, do several full oil changes (600, 3000 and 6000 mile points) during the first 6000 miles, and dumping in synthetic when doing that is silly. After the 6K, I have always gone Amsoil and use no oil to speak of between changes. The engine cannot detect what kind of oil you are using, and as long as you meet the API requirements of the engine, you are good to go.
    Doug, 2011 R1200RT Polar Metallic
    MSF #127350 NAUI #36288

  9. #9
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    Every 5000;

    I am changing my regular oil at 5000 now, easier to remember on the odometer too. The oil comes out clean, still golden in color(GSA1200). Used to use syns and I agree they probably flow better in very cold. I don't live there. I have one beemer with 380000, never seen syns, just Castrol20/50 and still on original engine, not rebuilt. This is so OLD and personal preferences prevail always. Both work and the cheaper dino oils sure do not take away any life of engines, if using proper API rated stuff. With a real high mileage BMW in my garage(R100/7) I bought new, heck I think I cannot kill this bike if I tried! Randy

  10. #10
    K Bikes Complex by Choice cjack's Avatar
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    I notice that BMW went from 20/50 to 10/40 for viscosity recommendations on the R1200GS...and synthetic. What do y'all use?
    BMWMotorcycles, fun when they're running...
    My other bike is a BMW.
    Jack Hawley MOA and RA #224, KE9UW ("Chuck")

  11. #11
    Jeff cookie's Avatar
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    Polarbear is right. The conventional oil is so good none of us would ever experience an oil related engine issue if the oil is changed regularly.
    I went with Amsoil when I stopped using oil, about 7,500 miles. I have almost 26,000 miles on the clock and I don't use a drop between oil changes that I can see. I fill to about 3/4 on the sight glass and it just stays there.
    O8 RT. Hope to put many more miles this year starting in March.
    Jeff Anderson
    I ride a 2008 R1200RT

  12. #12
    Just me rad's Avatar
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    I guess I'm the odd man out, I stopped using syn oil in my Oil Heads. I found my Oil Heads used more oil with syn rather than dino.

  13. #13
    Jeff cookie's Avatar
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    Any body know why that would be?
    I have always heard the opposite. The only thing that makes sense is if the viscosity was thinner.
    I have heard folks say the temp guage reads a click lower when they switched to synthetic. That is what happened to me, for some reason my 08 RT runs slightly cooler with synthetic?
    Jeff Anderson
    I ride a 2008 R1200RT

  14. #14
    na1g
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    The OP mentioned "half-synthetic" oil. I haven't seen "semi-synthetic" on the market for m-c oil but it is widely sold for cars. You should know that "semi-synthetic" is a blend of petro and synthetic, as you would expect, but there is no standard for the percent of each in the blend. Oil with just 10% synthetic could be sold as "semi-synthetic".

    For what my opinion is worth (not much, my wife would tell you) I will be switching to full synth at the up-coming 12K service on my 2011 RT. Then I feel comfortable with 6K oil changes and hot and cold ambient temperatures. Been using it in my Honda car which has 10K oil changes. If I spent $20K on the vehicle, the price of motor oil is insignificant for 6 or 10K.

    pete

  15. #15
    Just me rad's Avatar
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    I can't beleive after all these years, in what must have been a moment of utter weakness, I once again posted in an oil thread......................

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