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Stock rebuild with .030 over bore. 4bbl carb.
A little confused about break in oil after reading so many different replies.
Rotella 15-40 with additive for the first 500 miles?
Just Rotella?
Just regular 30wt and additive?
What ye say?
 

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I have used Rotella to break in my roller cam 331 strocker in my FFR Cobra replica and also the flat tappet cam 390 in my 66 Fairlane GT with great results. The Cobra engine has around 7,000 miles now and the Fairlane about 15,000 miles with no rounded off cam lobes or damaged lifters. I still use Rotella in my Fairlane because of the additional additives. It wouldn't hurt to add an additive for the initial break in. I am sure you know that to break in a flat tappet cam you need to set the idle at about 2,000 RPM when you first start the engine and let run for at least 20 minutes to break in the cam. I am a big fan of Rotella and I use it in everything I own with a flat tappet cam. About 15 or so years ago when they cut back on the Zinc and Phosphate additives without most people knowing, I ruined three camshafts and lifters from different manufactures because of it. After reading a magazine article about it I started using Rotella and haven't had any trouble since.
 

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Use an oil specifically formulated for engine break in. Follow the manufacturers directions for first oil change interval. Then use an oil specifically formulated for flat tappet cam engines for daily use.
Not a fan of additives. In my experience they end up in the bottom of the pan doing nothing.
 

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I was around the Winston Cup series in the mid 90's the first time they pulled the stunt Leefus mentioned. Flat tappet cams with 800# open pressure back then. LOTS of cams wiped out. Yes, Rotella has it's fans, and there are plenty of success stories. A few years ago I did some research into base stocks and additive packages in oils. Partly for work and partly for my own knowledge. I went with Amsoil. They have special break-in oil, oil with higher ZDDP content for the flat tappet stuff, full synthetic for my newer vehicles, stuff for my tractor, etc. No, I'm not a dealer.
 

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I was around the Winston Cup series in the mid 90's the first time they pulled the stunt Leefus mentioned. Flat tappet cams with 800# open pressure back then. LOTS of cams wiped out. Yes, Rotella has it's fans, and there are plenty of success stories. A few years ago I did some research into base stocks and additive packages in oils. Partly for work and partly for my own knowledge. I went with Amsoil. They have special break-in oil, oil with higher ZDDP content for the flat tappet stuff, full synthetic for my newer vehicles, stuff for my tractor, etc. No, I'm not a dealer.
800 open pressure on flat tappet cam WTF.......no wonder there were lots of wiped out cams.

Cheers, Bob
 

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The machine shop I frequent uses Driven BR40 break-in oil when they break-in engines for customers on their dyno.



 

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My builder recommends a good break in oil like the one from Joe Gibbs shown above and follow it up with using Valvoline VR-1 racing oil. It has the additional ZDDP that normal oils do not have due to catalytic converters / government regulations.
Thanks, Jay
 

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X3 on using Driven break in oil the use their hot rod oil after or Valvoline VR1
 

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The ZDDP levels were lowered in the diesel oils a few years ago so Rotella doesn't have the levels that it once did. I started using Lucas high zinc break in oil a few years ago with good success. I then switch to Lucas Hot Rod & Classic oil after break in for flat tappet builds since it has a 2100 PPM zinc level. I'm not a dealer.
 

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Stock rebuild with .030 over bore. 4bbl carb.
A little confused about break in oil after reading so many different replies.
Rotella 15-40 with additive for the first 500 miles?
Just Rotella?
Just regular 30wt and additive?
What ye say?
Just a couple thoughts, as in the big picture most any oil will do for long-term wear. That said, break-in with potential for scuffing is a concern that today's engines do not face, with advanced machining and materials control.

What that means to me, is that a good break-in oil should have high scuffing resistance, and fairly low wear protection, in order to allow parts to seat in a good wear pattern only for initial break-in. Oils such as Rotella T 15W40 Diesel oil have anti-scuffing additives intended for Diesel service. That's great for our special break-in use, but for long-term after break-in a low-wear oil designed for gasoline engines will do much better. Again, the wear rating of Rotella T Diesel is relatively poor, which helps initial break-in but not long-term.

For long-term after break-in and everything is meshing well together, a better wear rating is desired, and can be determined various ways. Typically (and there are always exceptions), Diesel oils are not good in this regard when used in gasoline engine designs. Their base oils and additives are intended for other purposes. Note at this point, if break-in is accomplished properly, the questionably "magic" additives of ZDP and others are now of far less concern. Virtually any oil will do, and for example the Rotella T Gasoline Truck oil is much superior to the Diesel version in this regard.

I have found in recent years, that there are certain indicators of low-wear oils that also have scuff protection. One of these I use now for flat-tappet engines are the ACEA ratings, that include both gasoline and diesel ratings in the same oils, e.g., ACEA A3/B3. Generally, these provide both excellent long-term anti-wear from their gasoline "A" spec, and anti-scuffing from their diesel "B" spec. Win-win.

While it can take years to see the effects of choices in oils, and the actual components and use of the engine play a critical part of the results; for many of us it also means that our choices are not that critical, except to get through flat-tappet break-in. Pick your poison and enjoy the journey. If you want to start another popular internet fight, just ask me how I've broken-in all of my engines for decades, using real-world data for results. :p On second thought, let's skip that.
 
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