[200q20v] Reprint of 4-97 Post: Piston ring seating

QSHIPQ at aol.com QSHIPQ at aol.com
Tue Oct 30 10:09:47 EST 2001

For those of you building "new" or even refreshing existing motors, thought
the post from Tom Cutter I received yesterday might spark some renewed
interest in the whole idea of non synthetic oil break-ins.  Below is the post
I recieved from TC yesterday, below that is the complete post to which he
refers (4-17-97).  Still searching for the actual CW article in my library.

Food for thought, thanks for the post Tom.



      While I was surfing the web, I came across the article reprinted below.
It caught my attention because it mentions Udo Gietl, for whom I was
searching. Udo and I worked together at Butler & Smith in the 70's, and I can
absolutely vouch that the ring seating procedure you described is the gospel
truth. In fact, I authored a Butler & Smith Service Advisory to the US
dealers entitled (if I remember) "Piston Ring Seating". If you ever encounter
the guy who says it's BS, let me at him! I was there. In fact, I assembled
many of the race motors that Udo and Tod Schuster designed and made special
parts for. I've attached a photo of us completing a trackside gearbox swap,
from Laconia 1978, if my memory serves.
      Just thought you'd like some very-overdue vindication!

Tom Cutter
Yardley, PA

TO:  quattro at audifans.com
SUBJECT:  Brake-in Smokin Out
DATE:  Apr 17 1997

I read with interest the latest Cycle World ("TDC" by Kevin Cameron -
May1997) regarding his experiences on the initial use of crappy dynosaur
basedoils for break-in periods on "new"  motors.  The summary of the article
isthat beginning with the "advancement" of oil anti wear additives, more
cyclesand cars were not bedding in their rings and pistons properly.
Theproposition is that the older "inferior" oils allowed for some rubbing
ofparts to help properly seat reciprocating assemblies.  For some time in the
80's, car manufacturers found that oil consumption inthe new cars increased
during the "break-in" period, and didn't necessarilydecrease over time.
Since that time, we have seen less importance on the"break-in" procedure
rigeur (I remember Dad being pretty retentive in the70's).  The shift to
"pre-lapping" engines made a shift from consumerbreak-in to manufacturers
break-in.  Kevin proposes that this move wasnecessary for two reasons, 1)
more protective oils, and 2)  consumers foundhigh oil consumption on new
"machines" to be unacceptable.   Kevin further proposes that this thinking
has a sound history, reciting someexperience with old motorcycle
racing/builder cronies, a most credibleargument being the "dry break-in" of
BMW bikes in the early 70's eliminatingthe grand oil consumption on new
motors (drop of oil on the cylinders then30seconds of 1/2 redline, <yea,
right!>).  He postulates that the carcompanies are now going through what
bikes did then, the need formanufacturers to bear the brunt of the break-in
process, since oil technologyis hardly a retroactive business.I find this
article to raise more questions on this theory, but it certainlyshows that
oil technology is giving great protection from wear, maybe even too much
initially.  Kevin's summary "It's facinating to see that additivetechnology
can in some cases get ahead of manufacturing, actually being togood to allow
full break-in."Makes ya think some about the use of synthetics from the get
go on a new orfreshly rebuilt engine, car OR bike.  I doubt this is without
somecontroversy, however, the article has good anecdotal and sound
engineeringpresentations in the argument.  Sounds to me like an oil company
might wantto consider a "break-in" oil formulation that is pure dynosaur, to
let usproperly "bed" our toys. Maybe the most copelling argument for buying
thebrand X stuff at Walmart before the tythe to synthetic payments.

Scott Justusson
Chicago, IL
'87 5ktqwRS2
'84 Urq'85

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