919 - Conventional or Synthetic? - Wrist Twisters
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post #1 of 27 Old 04-16-2016, 03:40 PM Thread Starter
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919 - Conventional or Synthetic?

Before anyone hits me with a "RTFM!" response...

I just bought my 2007 919 with 3,700 miles on it. It has had probably one oil change, maybe two. It's time for some fresh juice. I asked the PO what oil was in it, and he said the manual called for full synthetic. I just read the owner's manual and it specifies Honda GN4, which, as far as I can tell, is conventional. He also told me the manual called for 93 octane fuel, but I just read 86 or higher... are we reading the same manual? Anyway, just wondering what everybody runs, as if I'm going to be switching to synthetic, now is probably the best time to do it.

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post #2 of 27 Old 04-16-2016, 04:11 PM
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Oil is your choice but 87 octane is just fine for the 9er.
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post #3 of 27 Old 04-16-2016, 04:30 PM
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I run synthetic (Rotella T6). Just be sure it has the right SAE rating.

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post #4 of 27 Old 04-16-2016, 04:39 PM
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Rotella T6, 87 non-ethanol is what I run

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post #5 of 27 Old 04-16-2016, 05:41 PM
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I run Repsol semi-synthetic.
Everyone was out of it this time so I got Honda HP4 semi-synthetic.
+1, 87 octane is just fine.

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post #6 of 27 Old 04-16-2016, 08:12 PM
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Rotella T (hey, I'm cheap and the bike doesn't seem to mind) 15-40w and always low grade gas. When it can be found, I definitely shoot for ethanol free though.

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post #7 of 27 Old 04-17-2016, 05:06 AM
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My take on oil is this, right, wrong, or whatever...... The longer it in there, the higher quality. The harder I run it, the higher quality.

How often do you hear of a motorcycle engine failing because the owner ran average oil instead of the Super Expensive Over Kill oil?

I ran Rotella in my 919. 87 octane, Marqthon or BP, where I could find it. I changed oil every 3000 miles because I run my stuff fairly hard.

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post #8 of 27 Old 04-17-2016, 06:17 AM
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Rotella T 15W-40...Bike seems to shift great and it's gluten-free. Tried the synthetic Rotella and it didn't seem to shift as well.

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post #9 of 27 Old 04-17-2016, 08:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marylandmike View Post
Rotella T 15W-40...Bike seems to shift great and it's gluten-free. Tried the synthetic Rotella and it didn't seem to shift as well.
Shifting improved when I switched to Royal Purple. That's what I've been sticking with.

Oh, and 87 Octane.

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post #10 of 27 Old 04-18-2016, 01:49 PM Thread Starter
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I thought the bike calls for 10w-30. Is it a climate thing? I live in Ohio.

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post #11 of 27 Old 04-18-2016, 01:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whelan View Post
I thought the bike calls for 10w-30. Is it a climate thing? I live in Ohio.
Since day 1, the factory manual's recommendation has been a function of ambient temperature.
Which also translates to being a function of power level, for those doing track days.

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post #12 of 27 Old 04-18-2016, 01:56 PM Thread Starter
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I don't plan on doing any track days... yet.
Bike's primary use will be commuting ~15 miles and then highway/backroad ripping on weekends.

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post #13 of 27 Old 04-18-2016, 02:34 PM
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IIRC, the manual calls for 10W40 with 10W30 showing as acceptable depending on climate/ambient temperature.

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post #14 of 27 Old 04-18-2016, 02:40 PM Thread Starter
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It seems like the Rotella is pretty popular, I think I'm going to try that. So far I've spent most of my time around 4k RPM, so I'm not exactly wringing the 9er's neck.

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post #15 of 27 Old 04-18-2016, 03:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whelan View Post
It seems like the Rotella is pretty popular, I think I'm going to try that. So far I've spent most of my time around 4k RPM, so I'm not exactly wringing the 9er's neck.
I, like many others, have been using JASO stamped 5W40 Rotella T6 and getting very good results.
It's not the only game in town though, not by any stretch.
But you can't go wrong with it.
Too bad the new 0W40 T6 is not JASO stamped.

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post #16 of 27 Old 04-18-2016, 05:56 PM
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Honda HP4 semi-synthetic in 10w-40. This last oil change I did try Motorex Semi-synthetic also in 10w-40. I had to order that online from Revzilla but compared to the local guys price on the HP4 both were comparable in price and both preform well. I use 10w-40 due to the temperature range that I know I ride in. Once I used 10w-30 in the middle of summer and I started to get a lot of false neutrals when shifting. It only happen in the middle of the day so I knew it was the oil being too light due to the ambient temperature. As soon as I switched back to 10w-40 shifting became normal again. Not haveing the manual on me I think that 10w-30 is good for 25-95f and 10w-40 is good for 25-115f Edit: I run 87 as that helped a lot with controlling the infamous 919 stink. It's still there but not nearly what it was when running 91.

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post #17 of 27 Old 04-19-2016, 08:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 07919Dave View Post
It only happen in the middle of the day so I knew it was the oil being too light due to the ambient temperature.
If your cooling system is working correctly and you're not just sitting in traffic your engine temperature (and therefore oil temperature) should be pretty much the same regardless of ambient temperature.

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post #18 of 27 Old 04-19-2016, 10:51 AM
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Amsoil 10w40.

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post #19 of 27 Old 04-19-2016, 12:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badmoon692008 View Post
If your cooling system is working correctly and you're not just sitting in traffic your engine temperature (and therefore oil temperature) should be pretty much the same regardless of ambient temperature.
It's not quite that simple.
The 919 is a large volume X low heat rejection (rad) type of cooling system. It relies more on total coolant mass than heat rejection area as compared to a full on sport bike, e.g. GSXR600s& 750s.
In high altitude thin dry air at high power levels, the system will come into equilibrium at a higher coolant temp ( as a function of the basic thermal dynamic law that heat transfer rate is a function of temperature differential).
My guess is that a 919 touring at steady state touring speeds in desert heat for hours on end, would see a coolant temp somewhat higher than on a cool day in damp air at sea level.
For sure the oil temp would be higher.
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post #20 of 27 Old 04-19-2016, 09:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
My guess is that a 919 touring at steady state touring speeds in desert heat for hours on end, would see a coolant temp somewhat higher than on a cool day in damp air at sea level. For sure the oil temp would be higher.
Surprisingly, not the case. When I ran my thru Nevada and Texas at about 40C, the temperature gauge was about the same as a cool day in Calgary or Vancouver. As long as I was moving of course. As soon as I stopped, you could watch the gauge climb. Fast! I was very surprised how low the gauge registered.

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post #21 of 27 Old 04-20-2016, 07:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickard919 View Post
Surprisingly, not the case. When I ran my thru Nevada and Texas at about 40C, the temperature gauge was about the same as a cool day in Calgary or Vancouver. As long as I was moving of course. As soon as I stopped, you could watch the gauge climb. Fast! I was very surprised how low the gauge registered.
Hmmm, I wonder if you were going unusually slow for you on those 40 C days !
I also wonder if your "about the same" would bracket the few degrees higher equilibrium temp that could easily be possible, keeping in mind that the theromstat does not control the cooling temp equilibrium point once the 'stat is fully open.
Past that, I trust all is well for you and how far along are you with that old K ?

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post #22 of 27 Old 04-20-2016, 10:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
Hmmm, I wonder if you were going unusually slow for you on those 40 C days ! I also wonder if your "about the same" would bracket the few degrees higher equilibrium temp that could easily be possible, keeping in mind that the theromstat does not control the cooling temp equilibrium point once the 'stat is fully open. Past that, I trust all is well for you and how far along are you with that old K ?
I was riding my typical speed, 85 m/hr. Even tho the air temp is high, it's still cooler than the engine temp. I was very surprised how low the needle sat on the temperature gauge.
The old K is stalled out. Engine is in, carbs installed body and everything bolted back on. All it needs is a battery, oil and gas, push magic button and have fingers crossed. It's about two miles from your place in Chapparel. One day I have to finish it. Soon! Plus meet you for a coffee.

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post #23 of 27 Old 04-21-2016, 02:32 AM
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i run castrol gtx synthetic automotive oil 10w-40 and 93 octane. i ran 87 one time and it was pinging, so since then i've been on 93.

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post #24 of 27 Old 04-21-2016, 06:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanktm View Post
i run castrol gtx synthetic automotive oil 10w-40 and 93 octane. i ran 87 one time and it was pinging, so since then i've been on 93.
unless it was bad gas or you have an ignition advancer or something there's no reason a 919 (assuming we're talking about a 919) should have issues with pinging with 87

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post #25 of 27 Old 04-21-2016, 07:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badmoon692008 View Post
unless it was bad gas or you have an ignition advancer or something there's no reason a 919 (assuming we're talking about a 919) should have issues with pinging with 87
My 2006 Honda 919 (12K miles) pings under acceleration when I run 87 octane gas. I've done nothing performance to the engine/fuel injection/exhaust and to my knowledge neither did the previous owner. I also don't live at a high elevation.

On a side note my gas tank does hold over 5 gallons.

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post #26 of 27 Old 04-21-2016, 08:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badmoon692008 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanktm View Post
i run castrol gtx synthetic automotive oil 10w-40 and 93 octane. i ran 87 one time and it was pinging, so since then i've been on 93.
unless it was bad gas or you have an ignition advancer or something there's no reason a 919 (assuming we're talking about a 919) should have issues with pinging with 87
As the guy above me said, I was pinging pretty hard on acceleration with 87. I'll try a few tanks of 87 again at different places and see what happens. I'll just keep a bottle of octane booster and give it a squirt if it happens again.

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post #27 of 27 Old 04-21-2016, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanktm View Post
As the guy above me said, I was pinging pretty hard on acceleration with 87. I'll try a few tanks of 87 again at different places and see what happens. I'll just keep a bottle of octane booster and give it a squirt if it happens again.
Wise move to try other 87s in case what you had wasn't.
Refiners get fewer gallons of gasoline per barrel of oil, when processing for higher octane gasoline.

If you still have a problem, something isn't right , as might include combustion chamber deposits.

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