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Should one seriously consider switching to HD synthetic oil vs. the regular HD oil. If yes, is the HD’s the best choice, who makes it and what is its quality vs. other brands? When is the best time to switch? My 03 V-Rod has only about 1,400 Km and will be reading for its first service at 1,600 km. I expect to bring her in in March on a good day when the weather imporves here, it is now about -20 celcus and going down to -30 tonight.
 

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It is a matter of opinion on which Synthetic is the best. I use HD Syn3 to avoid any potential hassels Re the warrenty, but I change the oil myself between service intervals to save money. It is hugely expensive compared to Dino, but well worth the price. It has quieted the engine noises, smoothed the shifting, and reduced the oil temp. The bike runs like it always should have. I was frankly shocked at the improvement. I had tried synthetics in the past in one of my cars and could not feel a difference, and was put off by the cost. In the V-Rod, you will notice the difference.
 

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I talked to the service manager at the local dealer. She said that she recommended I use HD's Syn 3 in order to not have any problems with warranty work (imagine that!) Mine is running approx 20 degrees cooler w/ the Syn 3.
 

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Show her this.

Harley-Davidson Motor Company
3700 West Juneau Ave., P.O. Box 653, Milwaukee, WI 53201 414/342-4680

January 31, 2003

Aaron Scanlon
AMSOIL Building
Superior, WI 54880

Dear Mr. Scanlon:

Thank you for your recent letter requesting information on Harley-Davidson's one-year, unlimited mileage warranty when Synthetic Lubricants are used.

Until now, the Motor Company has never supported the use of synthetic products in our vehicles because there had never been any test validations completed on the numerous formulations in HD/Buell motorcycles to determine the viability of using these products on Harley-Davidson products until now.

We have developed a specially formulated synthetic fluid called SYN3. This fluid can be used in Harley-Davidson engines, transmissions and primary chaincases. This product had been exclusively designed for Harley-Davidson and is the only synthetic product tested and certified by Harley-Davidson engineering for use on HD/Buell motorcycles.

The use of a different brand of fluid does not void the one-year, unlimited mileage warranty unless it can be confirmed that the use of such products was the cause of the failure.

Thank you, Mr. Scanlon, for taking the time to write to Harley-Davidson and allowing me to answer your questions.

Sincerely,


Lisa Sagen
Powertrain Customer Service





John
 

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For those who cant get AMSOIL such as Australians, I spoke with the AMSOIL tech people in the US, and they say SYN 3 is fine, as is Mobile 1.
I'm not going to loose too much sleep over which synthetics to use (I use SYN3), as I still change oil every 4000kms.
1000kms in the Indian, but it's a side valve, and I only use Dino oil (PENZOIL HD50).

Best wishes all.

Ken.
:thumb
 

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MrBill said:
I'm using HD syth (VROD)--not any more expensive because you change oil less.

:lamer:
Not a good idea. Even the MoCo recommends the same intervals. I change mine every 1500 miles (Amsoil).


John
 

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HMM--Really cause HD is saying like 3000-5000 miles on their synthetic. Are the dealers really that ignorant or what's up?

:wazzup:
 

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I have read that 100 % synthetic oil is not good for your cluth if it does not contain some sort of "friction" additives.
I realize this sounds redundant but I think that an article similar regarding Honda's synth. oil is in the latest American Motorcyclist magazine. It says that a rider should not use a certain synth. oil produced by Honda in his Valkerie because it causes clutch slippage. He should use an updated version with friction additives.
I do not understand it entirely , I am just repeating it.
How about our resident oil guy putting in some of his angle !!
BobT
 

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What they said! I saw a big improvement in shifting, lower valve and associated engine clatter, and it runs cooler. I pay the difference when the dealer performs my scheduled maintenance, covered under my maintenance agreement. I have never had to add any between service. 10K on the bike.
 

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Bob,

The article was referring to the original formulation of Honda Synthetic that contained a lot of moly. Their latest formulation doesn't have that problem.

There are a number of articles out there (with test results) comparing Automotive Syn to Motorcycle Syn and every one of them has not been able to tell any appreciable difference in performance, clutch or otherwise, between the oils. Some tests even compare standard automotive oils to motorcycle oils regardless of formulation (regular or synthetic) and they can't find anything special about the motorcycle formulations that justify the extra cost.

I've used everything from standard dyno juice to Redline $10/bottle racing synthetic in bikes with a wet clutch and never had a problem with slippage or excessive wear. My personal opinion, the worst synthetic oil (that meets SAE standards) is better than the best standard oil. :2cents:

BTW, The manual states 5000 miles between oil changes regardless of formulation. (don't anyone go into a rant, that's what the manual says)
 

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Hummm, I have heard all of the test results Amsoil claim come from a lab they own.

I use Mobil 1 they seem to be more straightforward and have come out on top in test done by American Iron. Switch over at 500 miles and not one problem, over 9000 miles on the bike so far.

Dave
 

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According to George Douglas the results are conducted by an independent lab although the tests are funded by Amsoil. BTW Mobil 1 15-50 can be purchased at Wal-Mart for $17.95 per 5 qt jug ($3.59 per qt) when it's on sale which is often.



John
 

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Well my dealers suck then--because they are telling me I don't need to change my oil as often! I wonder if I can Sue????

:barf:
 

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HD SYN after first 500...runs cooler, less noise,never low on the stick, 6k on bike and change every 2500. Run Royal purple in all family cages and has same effect!
 

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Alright John, your avatar is oh so appropriate for your enduring tenacity. (Owned a Rotty -- great dogs)
I'm running Mobile 1 and was really impressed at the switch, especially with the clutch operation. I think in a past post you said NAPA carries Amsoil. I take it that there will be no drawback to switching to Amsoil from Mobile. (This stuff better make my hoo-hoo's stand up) :mrgr:
 

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ok... the use of Synthetic in V-Rod should have NO ill-effects on operation of clutch or anything else.
Syn3 is the only synthetic to be tested by the Motor Company and approved... of course. Why would they test any other?
I have used MobilOne oils in most of my vehicles for many years. I have read oil test articles for over 25 years, and while there are many good oils to choose from, one thing has remained constant.... MobilOne ALWAYS comes out on top in those tests.
However, HD never had a Synthetic before, and therefore, a choice had to be made.
Now that there IS a tested and approved HD Synthetic, that is my choice for Harleys. We all may have had our outside brand favorites in the past, but it's just not really an issue anymore.
Of course, I'll still use MobilOne in my car, truck, atv and boat.
 
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