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x39
11-24-2011, 02:40 PM
My girl friend was just at the gas station getting oil for her snowmachine. They had no generic two stroke oil, only some that was labeled for marine use which she went ahead and bought, but was a bit concerned. I figure the "marine" label is just a ploy to drive up the price, that oil is oil. Am I wrong, and if so can anyone tell me what the difference then is? Thanks in advance.

lynnl
11-24-2011, 03:21 PM
As far as I know it's all basically the same. There's nothing specific about marine use that makes it any different from land-based 2 cycle engines. The engine doesn't know whether it's turning a prop or a wheel or a sprocket with a chain attached.
However there may be, and probably are some slight differences in quality*. I know Mercury outboards, and probably Johnson and Evinrude too, insisted for their higher performance engines that their own formulations be used.
* - by quality differences, I mean brands, not because one says "marine."

What I use is an oil called "Opti-2", which permits the same mix (ratio) to be used in any 2 cycle engine. But to be on the safe side I do use Mercury's oil in my outboard.

I'm not sure if 2 cycle oil has a "service rating" like engine oil does, e.g. SG, etc., which the API or some such institute uses to designate different classes of oil, as technological advances take place. But regardless, just like engine oil, any that you buy is almost certain to meet the latest specs. ...unless you just happen to find some of the older oil during the period of transition.

cuslog
11-24-2011, 03:36 PM
I was told years ago that THERE IS a difference in 2 stroke oils between those intended for marine use (water cooled, ie; cooler running) vs air cooled, (hotter running).
I really can't say with any certainty though, 'cause out the other side of my face I'll say that I think there's an awful lot of marketing hype in the "oil business". :rolleyes:

Black_Moons
11-24-2011, 04:11 PM
Do not use 'Water cooled' marine oil in an air cooled 2 stroke. Its not rated for the MUCH higher head tempatures encountered.

Some marine oils may say its "Ok for air cooled use" but if it does not say that, don't risk it. And honestly id likey get the better oil anyway. Try going to a place that sells lawnmowers/etc, they usally have a good selection of 2 stroke oils.

aboard_epsilon
11-24-2011, 04:18 PM
All the outboard two stroke oil ends up in the water ..so perhaps thats got something to do with it ...perhaps it has something added that makes it breakdown quickly to something less harmful to the marine environment.

all the best.markj

hardtail
11-24-2011, 04:42 PM
Was looking at similar and noticed 2 stroke for snowmobiles to throw in another wrinkle........mixes properly at low temps........probably for injection not premix......

lakeside53
11-24-2011, 04:55 PM
Many oils are "multi-rated". TC3 is for air cooled, TCW3 is for water cooled; some packaging says it will meet all, and more. Believe what you want... but you get what you pay for.

I've pulled countless 2 strokes down and the differences in oils is night and day. Air cooled motors that are run on generic TCW are always coked up with a gooey gritty carbon mess.

It's 2012... just use a decent mainstream synthetic and be done with it. Mix it at the EQUIPMENT manfs ratios.. don't "add a litle more" - more is not better.

jnissen
11-24-2011, 05:19 PM
Many oils are "multi-rated". TC3 is for air cooled, TCW3 is for water cooled; some packaging says it will meet all, and more. Believe what you want... but you get what you pay for.

I've pulled countless 2 strokes down and the differences in oils is night and day. Air cooled motors that are run on generic TCW are always coked up with a gooey gritty carbon mess.

It's 2012... just use a decent mainstream synthetic and be done with it. Mix it at the EQUIPMENT manfs ratios.. don't "add a litle more" - more is not better.


More is sometimes much better. In my radio control race boats I run as high as 8 to 10 ounces of oil to a gallon of gasoline. That is 16:1 - 12.8:1. While the oil is mainly used to protect and cool it can also serve to seal the bore better and with increased compression comes increased power. Mind you that these motors see 18K RPM from 26cc's of displacement and is putting out about 6.5 horse power. If you do happen to go lean in that situation the extra oil really saves that motor.

For the majority of power equipment with mufflers and spark arrest screens then yes more oil is going to count against you in the long run. The screens plug up with carbon build up can be an issue.

What is the best oil? I personally will only use Honda HP2 synthetic.

http://www.jrcbd.com/images/jims/IMG_2275.jpg

x39
11-24-2011, 08:57 PM
Thanks guys, I'll check whether it's TC3 or TCW3. Great answers all. Hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving.

precisionmetal
11-24-2011, 09:00 PM
Just don't forget that in a premix situation, the more oil you dump on the gasoline, the leaner the engine will run (if you don't change the jetting).

Carburetors provide a given amount of fuel for a given amount of air. If you add oil, then there is actually less gasoline in that same amount of fuel -- the engine runs leaner.

I come from a gokart racing background -- castor is king. :)

PM

Willy
11-25-2011, 01:30 AM
The problem with oil, unlike a part that is actually designed to fit a certain designed dimensional requirement is that it always fits.:rolleyes:
Irregardless if it actually meets the operational design requirements.

For instance, would you use the same oil in your lawn mower as you would in a turbocharged diesel engine, or hydraulic oil in you rear differential?
After all, oil is oil right?
Oil of any kind is better than no oil, but the wrong oil can give a false sense of security if the application specific requirements are not met.

You did not state if the power plant in your girl friend's snow machine was water or air cooled. If water cooled, the marine oil would be closer to meeting the design requirements of the engine as it would be closer to the operational parameters encountered in a water cooled marine engine. If it is an air cooled motor I would be reluctant to use it at all unless it was an emergency.

Likewise do not be coerced into believing that the motor is going to explode if the manufacturer's' name brand oil is not being religiously used.
As long as the oil you are using meets the specifications of the engine manufacturer, you have little to worry about.

I have never seen a case where an OEM has taken an oil supplier to court for under performance of it's product for not meeting the SAE or API specs that it was labeled to meet. This not to say that all oils meet these specs to the the same degree, but you at least have some assurance if the oil is labeled appropriately.

EVguru
11-25-2011, 05:02 AM
Castor oil is still hard to beat for film strength. It has all sorts of disadvantages too, like going rancid, congealing when cold and restricting oil lines, etc. It's a great smell at a vintage car or bike race!

My Gilera CX is pushing out the thick end of 30bhp from 125cc and the fact that the engine still feels crisp with over 26,000Km on the clock (with no sign that its been re-built) is considered quite impressive. Water cooled 2-strokes can be very prone to cold seizure and I'm always very careful to get the water temperature well up before venturing over 8,000rpm and into power valve territory. Consumption of the full synthetic 'race' oil is impressively low.

madmec
11-25-2011, 05:20 AM
All you have to check ist the Specification. On 2-strokes the most common spec is the JASO (Japanese Automotive Standard Organization).

There are some classes, starting with "FA" up to "FD". Higher Letter, less "dirt" generation during combustion.

Everything from "JASO FC" should be ok for modern Engines.

Thomas

torchroadster
11-25-2011, 07:14 AM
My 2 cents -

Castor is great, but not in a snowmobile. It does not stay mixed with gasoline at cold temperatures.

Don't use marine oil in an air cooled motor. A long time ago I seized a piston in a chainsaw using marine oil.

More oil is indeed better - limited only by 1) Cost 2) Fouling the spark plug. However you do need to adjust the jetting accordingly - more oil equals less fuel through the same jet size.

A name brand synthetic, mixed at the manufacturer's ratio (or a bit more oil than recommended, e.g. 20:1 instead of 25:1) is a safe approach.

garagemark
11-25-2011, 07:19 AM
I'm glad you guys have enlightened us about this topic. I have a 110 HP bass boat, a 900 CC jet ski, three string trimmers, two chainsaws, and two leaf blowers. All of them drink the same oil, all but one leaf blower and the jet ski are many years old. Thank goodness I haven't roasted ANY of them by using off brand MegaMart 2 cycle oil. I do have two different mixes that I must use (40:1 and 50:1).

But now that I know all my stuff is going to die for lack of the correct oil.... I probably won't change a thing. Maybe I've just been lucky, and maybe I inadvertently buy the right stuff, but truth is the same thing goes into all my toys and tools, and it's usually whatever is on sale.

Mark

bewards
11-25-2011, 09:51 AM
I'm glad you guys have enlightened us about this topic. I have a 110 HP bass boat, a 900 CC jet ski, three string trimmers, two chainsaws, and two leaf blowers. All of them drink the same oil, all but one leaf blower and the jet ski are many years old. Thank goodness I haven't roasted ANY of them by using off brand MegaMart 2 cycle oil. I do have two different mixes that I must use (40:1 and 50:1).

But now that I know all my stuff is going to die for lack of the correct oil.... I probably won't change a thing. Maybe I've just been lucky, and maybe I inadvertently buy the right stuff, but truth is the same thing goes into all my toys and tools, and it's usually whatever is on sale.

Mark

:D Thats good! I've been doing the same for prob 32 years. Back then it was Tcw then Tcw2 now Tcw3. I repaired 2 cycle engines as a hobby for years and never saw damage from proper tcw oils. I never had to get into the engines of my stuff either though. Just other peoples. :eek:
I like you run it (the generic megastore brand) in my outboard, chainsaws, weed eaters, blowers, and even my diesel truck to improve lubricity of the fuel.
The manufacturers do want you to run different oils in the aircooled motors, I just never have. I figured it was to sell their own brands of oil.

be

Willy
11-25-2011, 10:11 AM
Mark, two questions.

What service specification is your MegaMart oil labeled for?
As I'm sure you must be aware, some oils meet several classifications...at least enough to keep most customers happy by being able to get away with being able to use one oil. Some oils are better in this respect than others.

How many hours do you put on these units annually?
Compare the hours and type of service you put on your machines to a commercial or rental fleet with a very diverse set of operators who literally push the operational envelope daily.

Not directly oil related, but I spoke to one large power equipment and marine rental operator about 8 years ago and he was quite satisfied with the service he was experiencing from his fleet. At the suggestion of one of his suppliers he was asked to switch to premium gas from regular, even though all of his equipment was rated to operate on regular. After two years he noticed a steady decline in operational and service issues with his fleet, more than enough to offset the price differential.

As in most anything, whether it's a piece of mechanical equipment, electronic, or even software for that matter, the quality of the components that make up a product play a large part in the overall level of service derived from them.
But as I eluded to earlier, one does not necessarily have to go first class all the way. The leeway or window to tolerate extremes may be a little more restricted, but sometimes good enough is good enough.;)

Black_Moons
11-25-2011, 12:03 PM
I'm glad you guys have enlightened us about this topic. I have a 110 HP bass boat, a 900 CC jet ski, three string trimmers, two chainsaws, and two leaf blowers. All of them drink the same oil, all but one leaf blower and the jet ski are many years old. Thank goodness I haven't roasted ANY of them by using off brand MegaMart 2 cycle oil. I do have two different mixes that I must use (40:1 and 50:1).

Mark

I doubt your 50:1 equipment would mind 40:1, if you wanna simplify things. (Infact, I doubt your 40:1 equipment would mind 50:1, but its usally better to go the other way around, Also, 50:1 would just be the 'target' ratio, small error in your mixing could make it anywhere from 40:1 to 60:1

lynnl
11-25-2011, 12:34 PM
I think the responses here, more than anything else, reflect the two major differences in personalities. :D
Some people will go to the ends of the earth, researching and testing and taking every imaginable precaution to insure that WHATEVER they do adheres to all the most precisely engineered practices and recommendations.
And that works for them. They sleep soundly at night, knowing they've done everything humanly possible to achieve the best outcome, and smug in their knowledge that they have risen above all the unwashed masses who know no better.

The other group takes the lower, "git'er done" road. And that works equally well for them.

Most of us probably bounce back and forth between the two extremes, depending on the circumstances and perceived risk/reward.

Take whatever course you're most comfortable with.

That's my story, and I'm sticking to it. :)

Black_Moons
11-25-2011, 01:23 PM
Technicaly, The manufacturer recommendations for my 2 stroke engine is 20:1 with *motor oil*

Slightly.. Old design :)

I run it 30:1 with real 2 stroke oil.... Thinking of going to 40:1 to be honest..

Some people run 100:1 in the same motor with some fancy full synthetics rated for 100:1 usage.

firbikrhd1
11-25-2011, 02:09 PM
Like Lynnl, I use Opti 2 in all of my air cooled equipment. Some of it the manufacturer wants 25:1, some 32:1 and some 50:1. I use the same mix of opti 2 in everything air cooled without any difficulties at all, even in South Florida's near 100 degree temperatures.
the guy at the lawnmower repair shop that repairs equipment for the commercial guys says he and many of his customers use the Opti 2 premix in their 4 cycle equipment as well. The fuel/oil mix is so lean it doesn't foul plugs and gives a little upper cylinder lubrication to boot. That way there is no need to have two different containers of fuel.
I wouldn't use in for water cooled two cycle engines and I don't believe it's recommended by Opti 2 to do so.

Racebrewer
11-26-2011, 07:40 PM
30 years of racing two strokes.

Oils for water cooled engines won't work in air cooled motors no matter how high tech or expensive they are. Different design parameters.

The more oil you run, up to the point that the plug fouls, the more power the motor will make and the longer it will last. That has been proven repeatedly over the years. Repeatedly.

If you think that 40 to 1 is better than 30 to 1, than for God's sake go to 500 to 1. I need a laugh. :p Oil is a lubricant. It keeps metal surfaces apart. If it doesn't ............

Idling a street bike around the block isn't the same as racing it at high temperatures and high RPM. Same for snowmobiles. Do you idle it around or do you push it to the max? How much are new pistons?

John

justanengineer
11-26-2011, 07:58 PM
I think the responses here, more than anything else, reflect the two major differences in personalities. :D
Some people will go to the ends of the earth, researching and testing and taking every imaginable precaution to insure that WHATEVER they do adheres to all the most precisely engineered practices and recommendations.

The other group takes the lower, "git'er done" road. And that works equally well for them.


Very well stated, and nicely maintained neutrality.

To add my personal opinion...In my day job (engine design) I have learned that you can either 1. spend a few dollars more on an engine and use quality parts, oils etc, do the necessary maintenance according to the required schedule, and follow recommended operating practices (baby your engine) or 2. you can be ignorant of the real reason why an engine failed.

Personally I would recommend the lady immediately toss the oil she bought and refill the machine with the proper oil. Ive rebuilt quite a few sleds as well as built a few for race purposes only, and I use nothing but the standard SkiDoo oil. Its a preference yes, but I can tell the difference vs generic crap both in operation and at rebuild time.

lakeside53
11-26-2011, 08:37 PM
The more oil you run, up to the point that the plug fouls, the more power the motor will make and the longer it will last. That has been proven repeatedly over the years. Repeatedly.

If you think that 40 to 1 is better than 30 to 1, than for God's sake go to 500 to 1. I need a laugh. :p Oil is a lubricant. It keeps metal surfaces apart. If it doesn't ............


John


What is your time between rebuilds on a racing bike -8, 10, 20, 50 hours? ON a commercial blower or chainsaw - 2500-4000 hours. Completely different operating conditions and expectations. Excess oil promotes carbon which will get BEHIND the rings in the later case.... and dramatically reduces lifetime. 50:1 is typical today, with movement to 80:1 (and this has little to do with emissions).

As a Stihl tech.. I've seen inside more motors than I want to remember. It's immediately obvious when someone is adding 8 oz of SAE30 to a gallon of gas ('cos that's what their grandfather's homelite has written on the side), and the guy that uses a modern synthetic at high mix ratios.

flylo
11-26-2011, 08:38 PM
http://www.ultralightnews.com/features/oiltest.htm

Good article on 2 stoke oil. I fly GA as well as ulralight & always used Penzoil air cooled than switched to Walmart with TC-3 with good luck in both air cooles 503 Rotax, 582 liuid cooled Rotax & 440 Kawasakis. I had a MZ202 I ran thier recomended synthetic. Just y opinion.

kf2qd
11-26-2011, 09:24 PM
A number of years ago a friend worked for the local marina and they recommended different oils for air cooled from Water cooled. At that timer they did see more crud, and faster if they used water cooled oil in air cooled engines. It seems that at teh time there was actually a bit more crud in the water cooled oil that did not cause a problem in water cooled engines because of lower peak temperatures.

All my 2 strokes have run whatever the multi-tank container that is available in the store and I have run that in everything. Cheap saws wore out in about 3 years when i was heating with wood. I didn't figure $30 bucks a year was bad for the saw . Spent more than that on good chains. The better saw lasted even longer...

Probably better oils today than there were 25 years ago...