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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A million years ago when I was 17 and living in England, a friend gave me a ride on his 50cc moped (anyone know what that is?). From that moment on I knew that real transportation came only on two wheels. I bought a 175cc BSA Bantam from the post office (they sold their old ones for $30), Gawd! I was king of the road! Next came a 250cc Velocette, then a 500cc BSA single, then a Norton, and then an Ariel, and then a Triumph, and on, and on...After many years I bought a BMW R80 (boxer) which I bought with me to the US when I moved here 20 years ago. I finally sold it for $500 less than I had paid for it 18 years earlier and got a new Honda CB750, which was a mechanical marvel, but had no soul. Eventually the kids left home and it was my turn to go shopping. I bought a 2005 Softail (FXSTI), I love that thing. It may not have the engineering finesse of a Honda, but it has presence and plenty of soul. It may not be my last bike, but if I do change, then it will be for another Harley. A bike without a soul, is like a prophet without a God!
I earn my living by being an R&D chemist making lubricating oils (mainly for the aerospace industry), but I do get to go to earthbound factories quite often, and I have been to HD several times, and No, they do not hammer them together,, they are serious guys who take their work seriously.
 

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:welcome: to the forum. Sounds like you've had fun on all those motorsickles!! Post up often and enjoy.
 

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Welcome to the forum. Ok yor a lube chemist and you have visited the MOCO. One question comes to mind... Who produces Harley Davidson Brand Oil???
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Who produces HD's oils?

I wish I knew, I will do my best to find out, but I have a feeling it is probably a secret guarded by marketing dept. My guess is that it is probably the one they got the best deal on, rather than the best oil in the world. My feeling about oil is that if you buy the right viscosity from a reliable company ( eg. Mobil, Quaker, Redline, Castrol etc) then you are unlikely to go wrong. As to synthetic vs Dino oil, the only real advantage (as I see it) is that the synthetic has better stability at higher temperatures because the oil it is made from (and generally it is just oil) has a more uniform molecular weight distribution. (Once the synthetic part was just that, synthetic oil (PAO), but now it tends to be simply oil that has been fractionated in such a way as to give this narrower molecular weight distribution.) So, my 2 cents (for what it is worth) is to use synthetic in conditions where the oil temp is going above 220F, or there abouts. Synthetics are OK to significantly above 300F. There is no sharp cut-off temperature, they are all ranges. The other point about oil is not so much how many miles between changes, but how often you start the engine. Short (10 -15 miles or under) journeys, then change after 3000 miles (especially in the cold months), longer joureys (> 10-15 miles) you are OK to change at 5000 miles. It is really the crap that builds up in the oils (including acidic condensation and fuel) that necessitates changing the lubes, much more so than the lubes undergoing breakdown.
 

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Giles said:
I wish I knew, I will do my best to find out, but I have a feeling it is probably a secret guarded by marketing dept. My guess is that it is probably the one they got the best deal on, rather than the best oil in the world.

Hey Giles,

I think HD is required by law to list the manufacturer on the appropriate MSD.
The MSD for HD Syn3 says it's made by Citgo. I would guess that's the source of HD dino as well.

Welcome aboard from one chemist (well biochemist) to another (you) :yes:

regards,

wyo

ps - post a pic of your scooter if you have one handy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Harley Davidson Syn3 oil

Wyo, you are absolutely correct HD Syn3 oil is made by CITGO. I find this a shame since CITGO is not a US company. In fact it is owned by Petroleos de Venezuela S.A., the national oil company of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Heck, you'd think they would have used oil from a US company.
I have a pair of HD rain pants, the label says "Harley Davidson, an American Legend, Made in China". (Don't tell me it is the only way to keep the cost down, they were a fortune!!!). I dread the day I see the label "Made in China" on an actual Harley Davidson M/c. I guess it will arrive soon enough.
Me, I'm going to use Mobil 1 15W50, at least in the engine.
I'll post a photo of my Softail when I get round to taking one..hopefully soon.

("Chemists do it in test-tubes!")
giles..
 

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Giles said:
Me, I'm going to use Mobil 1 15W50, at least in the engine.
There was an article in a recent issue of American Iron that claimed Mobil synthetic was the best.

I use Red Line products myself. 20w60HD for the motor, MTL in the primary and shockproof heavy in the tranny.

I think at the end of the day the most important thing about lubricants is to change them and the filter on a routine basis.

Time for a beer. :cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Oils

Apart from 15W50 in the Engine, I'm going with the same as you in the Primary (MTL) and in the tranny (Shockproof heavy) both by Redline.

giles..
 
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