What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

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paulcomi
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What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by paulcomi »

What weight oil are you folks using for your 1964 4 speed standard engine Corvairs?

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Scott H
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by Scott H »

I use Valvoline Diesel Oil 15W40 in my '65 4 speed, (the block is from a '64 if that matters to you) ::-):
Scott

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paulcomi
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by paulcomi »

diesel oil? I must be very lucky because my car doesn't leak oil and in the 2 years I've owned it I haven't even had to add any. The dipstick is still showing full. I drive it a couple times a month, but more now that I've got it all shined up with a new interior.

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Scott H
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by Scott H »

Here is more info than you could ever want about oil and your Corvair.
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Corvair_oil.pdf
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Scott

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paulcomi
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by paulcomi »

Thanks Scott. I'll check it out.

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paulcomi
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by paulcomi »

Scott Howey wrote:I use Valvoline Diesel Oil 15W40 in my '65 4 speed, (the block is from a '64 if that matters to you) ::-):
Is your engine stock or high performance? Can I just trust that you've done your homework and I'd be doing fine using the same stuff? I'm in the Los Angeles area and I think you are too so we'd have the same climate considerations.

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Scott H
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by Scott H »

It's what Mike Moreno (aka GOLDVAIR) who built my motor said to run and it's what he runs in all of his vairs. He's from So Cal as well.
My motor is a 140, bored 40 over, mild cam, forged pistons.

I've been told (but I havent bought any yet) that Rotella T from the local truck stops is just as good and can be bought much cheaper. I believe it is mentioned in that paper I attached earlier too.
Scott

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paulcomi
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by paulcomi »

I haven't done the oil yet, but I'm considering using straight 30 weight. anyone using 30 in theirs?

Also, what about the transmission fluid? Does the corvair use a filter? What kind of oil?

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Imnvegas
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by Imnvegas »

Rotella HDEO

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marvgarr
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by marvgarr »

I use straight 30 wt rotella covential oil and lucas for dry starts run it in everything for years never a problem

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emceebrooks
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by emceebrooks »

Guys, related question. When the dipstick on our 64 shows solidly on “add oil”, how much should I add? I put in a full quart and it brought it up only to halfway between “add”and “full”. Dipstick is original, fully inserted, car is level, sat for 30 minutes after adding oil and level on dipstick didn’t move further than 1/2 way. Thoughts?
Marcus Brooks
Columbus, OH / Orlando, FL

'64 Monza Convertible

dave t
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by dave t »

Basic description:
The corvair engine has flat lifters. Back in the day, oil had zinc and phosperois, also known as ZDDP additive. This gave a protective film between the flat lifter and the cam lobe. When cadilitic converters came onto the scene. Zddp clogged them up. Also, engine had roller lifters. Oil manufacturers removed add from the oil.

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dave t
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by dave t »

Corvairs need zddp to protect the lifters and cam. We can use most any oil we choose but should also use a zddp additive. I don't like to hassle with additives. I use diesel oil (crankcase, not fuel). It includes the zddp additive. Several brands come to mind. I have used chevron dello for years. Shell rotella is good and I think valvoline makes some too.
Look on the container for the round API service tag. Look for CJ4 or CI 4. That will tell you that the oil has enough zddp for your corvair. I also like to use a half a quart of Lucas to help with cold starts.

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66vairguy
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by 66vairguy »

paulcomi wrote:
Wed Oct 13, 2010 5:35 pm
diesel oil? I must be very lucky because my car doesn't leak oil and in the 2 years I've owned it I haven't even had to add any. The dipstick is still showing full. I drive it a couple times a month, but more now that I've got it all shined up with a new interior.
Paul - As you can read you'll get umpteen different engine oil opinions. A lot of mis-information out there. Richard Widmarks comments are good, but last year the NEW diesel motor oils came out and Richards warned NOT TO USE the latest revision. Problem is you can't find the older rating either. In fact Ford kicked several name brand diesel oils off there approved truck oil list when they first came out (supposedly issues have been addressed by now). So the old belief that diesel motor oils are superior for flat tappet engines isn't as valid as in years past. Also not needed.

The ZDDP hysteria started when ZDDP was REDUCED so it wouldn't negatively affect catalytic converters. So panic set in for our OLD engines. Funny thing is there WAS ALMOST NO ZDDP in motor oils until the early sixties and all those OLD flat tappet engines ran just fine. So why was ZDDP increased - well the Big Three automotive companies extended oil change intervals so they could advertise lower maintenance costs. With the then newer detergent motor oil to prevent sludge buildup, and polymers added for multi-viscosity, the theory was you didn't have to change the oil as often. One problem came up. The rate of NEW engine camshaft failures increased under warranty (1 yr or 12,000 miles). It was found increasing the ZDDP solved the issue, BUT note too much ZDDP is corrosive to engine parts - so don't use additives. Basically when the old 60's motor oil started to wear out the ZDDP acted as a lubricant if the oil film fails. If the oil does it job, then the ZDDP does little.

I exchanged notes with Richard W. and he said today's name brand 10W30 motor oils are superior to anything made in 1965 and even with the lower ZDDP the oils are fine for flat tappet camshaft engines. If you want peace of mind simply change the oil by 2,000 miles - like they did before increasing ZDDP for extended oil change intervals.

If your engine is not worn then 10W30 is good as was originally specified for the Corvair engine. Richard is much opposed to heavier weight oils as they have poor startup protection (takes longer to circulate when cold) and makes the oil pump work harder (puts more heat in the oil), etc. Hard to argue with his logic.

NOW if you are going racing (puts severe demands on engine oil) or have a worn out engine (smoking, low compression), then a different approach is needed.

Bob Roegge
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by Bob Roegge »

I am by no means an expert on these issues but, would suggest looking up and reading an article entitled Oil - What motor oil is best for my aircooled Porsche by Charles Navarro. The article was written after extensive study and lab testing. The ZDDP issue as well as many others related to aircooled engines are discussed. I found this article when I purchased my older 911 and was concerned with wear issues with a high temperature running aircooled engine. There were a few recommended oils but the #1 choice was Brad Penn Grade 1 racing oil. Interesting read with many Q&As.

66vairguy
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Re: What oil for a 1964 Corvair monza?

Post by 66vairguy »

Bob R. brings up a good point about extreme use, as some Porsche engines experience. If you are going racing, then racing oil is a good thing, but keep in mind most racing oils are lower detergent as this improves the anti-wear properties of an engine oil.

Keep in mind the Corvair engine, unlike the Porsche engine, was designed for normal operation and the camshaft practically sits in oil so for "normal" operation a lower detergent racing oil in not the best choice, unless you don't mind frequent oil changes to reduce the issue of sludge buildup.

If your Corvair has an aftermarket high lift camshaft and high tension valve springs, then a racing oil is probably needed.

To put folks minds at ease our club did a causal survey on what motor oil folks used. Most were using name brand low ZDDP 10-30 oil. Since ZDDP was reduced over a decade ago folks have been using the new lower ZDDP oils for many years. NOBODY reported a camshaft failure.

That said, new cam and lifter break-in is a critical time and an appropriate break-in additive should be used. Once the cam is broken-in a regular motor oil should not be an issue.

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