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Old 9th December 2008, 17:01   #1
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Default Unleaded Petrol in Vintage and Classic Cars?

We know that the lead content in petrol in the earlier days, was harmful and was known to cause neurological problems for all especially children, when the leaded petrol exhaust, emitted by motor vehicles was inhaled.
But this lead content was the saviour for the older engine's inlet valves, that used to get some cushioning. Now the deleterious environmental impacts of lead have been eliminated by the discontinuance of leaded petrol.
In western countries, an additive for petrol is available in one or half litre cans. Sadly in India this is not availiable. Owners of old cars based on the older (side valve/ overhead valve) technology are missing this product in our markets. Valve seat recession is a common related problem in such cases, where neither leaded petrol nor the additive is used.
The Castrol branded Valvoline is extensively used in the U.K. for older cars as an additive. When I enquired with an official of Castrol, he quipped that if there is a demand we will surely introduce the product in India. I also contacted Castrol through their website.They have been acknowledged that they will conduct a market survey and introduce the product 'Valvoline', that is marketed in the U.K. and other western markets, if there is a good demand.

In an earlier query I got some well-meaning replies from friends which are reproduced here:

(1)Since I also have a petrol Jonga, I keep my ancient inline 6 alive with 1% mix of synthetic 2 stroke oil. Actually old engines can take unleaded easily except for their soft valve seats. If that can be replaced with hardened seats, the problem is all but solved.

(2)The ash less synthetic 2T like Castrol JetX is perfectly fine to use in a 1% mixture with petrol, this way the plugs don't foul and neither does carbon build up on the head and your valve seats stay intact.
Would like to hear from friends about it here.

Last edited by anjan_c2007 : 9th December 2008 at 17:06.
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Old 9th December 2008, 17:07   #2
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We know that the lead content in petrol in the earlier days, was harmful and was known to cause neurological problems for all especially children, when the leaded petrol exhaust, emitted by motor vehicles was inhaled.
---
(2)The ash less synthetic 2T like Castrol JetX is perfectly fine to use in a 1% mixture with petrol, this way the plugs don't foul and neither does carbon build up on the head and your valve seats stay intact.
Would like to hear from friends about it here.
i think this lead additive is called tetra ethyl lead or TEL, which also is an anti knock additive , this compund is also found in octane boosters such as those made by STP AND NOS ,, so i guess may be those could be added in the fuel ,, these additives i think are easily available
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Old 9th December 2008, 17:10   #3
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I was thinking about this for a long long time and the consequential harmful effects to the engine and the valves of the Vintage and Classics. Hope something positive turns out with this well thought of thread to discuss amongst gurus here.
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Old 9th December 2008, 17:34   #4
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Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs ?
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Old 9th December 2008, 17:39   #5
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What are you trying to say through this link?
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Old 9th December 2008, 18:54   #6
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Originally Posted by siddartha View Post
i think this lead additive is called tetra ethyl lead or TEL, which also is an anti knock additive , this compund is also found in octane boosters such as those made by STP AND NOS ,, so i guess may be those could be added in the fuel ,, these additives i think are easily available
Well I had bought a few bottles of this STP Petrol treatment, when I was in Singapore. I even had a bottle of "Octane booster" 'can't seem to find it in the house now!

Unleaded Petrol in Vintage and Classic Cars?-img_1940.jpg

Unleaded Petrol in Vintage and Classic Cars?-img_1943.jpg

According to what it says, it fights the build-up of gummy deposits in the fuel system (which I recently read is commonly caused due to unleaded petrol)
However, I haven't got to using this extensively because it says to pour entire contents into a FULL tank, and my cars' tanks have never been filled full so far!
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Old 9th December 2008, 18:59   #7
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Originally Posted by rjvora_2000 View Post
What are you trying to say through this link?
it had links to companies that sold additives that worked as lead substitute

TetraBOOST
Millers Oils Automotive - Classic
Lead Substitute
among others

Last edited by greenhorn : 9th December 2008 at 19:01.
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Old 9th December 2008, 19:53   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anjan_c2007 View Post
(1)Since I also have a petrol Jonga, I keep my ancient inline 6 alive with 1% mix of synthetic 2 stroke oil. Actually old engines can take unleaded easily except for their soft valve seats. If that can be replaced with hardened seats, the problem is all but solved.
That is correct


I have used 1% 2T oil in my 87 M800 to notice the engine run smoother. This is because of the increase in carbon which gives one that impression!
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Old 18th December 2008, 12:51   #9
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Originally Posted by Stanher View Post
Well I had bought a few bottles of this STP Petrol treatment, when I was in Singapore. I even had a bottle of "Octane booster" 'can't seem to find it in the house now!

Attachment 78109

Attachment 78110

According to what it says, it fights the build-up of gummy deposits in the fuel system (which I recently read is commonly caused due to unleaded petrol)
However, I haven't got to using this extensively because it says to pour entire contents into a FULL tank, and my cars' tanks have never been filled full so far!
sir these are available in most car accessories shops in bangalore
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Old 18th December 2008, 14:20   #10
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As suggested the best thing to do is to add some oil to fuel as positive lubrication
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Old 18th December 2008, 14:42   #11
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As suggested the best thing to do is to add some oil to fuel as positive lubrication
what would be the correct mixture , and any inputs regarding the emmissions, sparks plugs fouling, and also what is the lead content of oil ? and does it really solve the problem?
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Old 18th December 2008, 14:45   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siddartha View Post
what would be the correct mixture , and any inputs regarding the emmissions, sparks plugs fouling, and also what is the lead content of oil ? and does it really solve the problem?
We add about 50ml oil to a tankful which is a 100 litre tank. A visual check on not overdoing it is when you don't see white smoke

BTW this was a tip from an old genius of a mechanic who had worked on countless engines. Even in the leaded fuel days on a newly overhauled engine we used to do this, only a larger quantity for positive piston lubrication. So invariably the small quantities of oil in fuel help. I am not aware of commercially available lead substitutes here in India but I should think once we get those one can switch to that.

Last edited by DKG : 18th December 2008 at 14:54.
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Old 18th December 2008, 15:07   #13
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thanks , i will try the oil ,i guess old school stuff sure works , but theoritically the octane boosters also should deliver the same results
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Old 18th December 2008, 19:48   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siddartha View Post
what would be the correct mixture , and any inputs regarding the emmissions, sparks plugs fouling, and also what is the lead content of oil ? and does it really solve the problem?
2T oil addition is only in vehicles that do NOT have a catalytic convertor!


Quote:
Originally Posted by DKG View Post
I am not aware of commercially available lead substitutes here in India but I should think once we get those one can switch to that.
We may not get that due to environment concerns!

Quote:
Originally Posted by siddartha View Post
thanks , i will try the oil ,i guess old school stuff sure works , but theoritically the octane boosters also should deliver the same results
No Octane boosters increase the Octane rating and the 2T oil decrease the Octane rating!
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Old 18th December 2008, 20:21   #15
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Quote:
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No Octane boosters increase the Octane rating and the 2T oil decrease the Octane rating!
I remember, a Herald expert had once told me that lower octane could result in a noisier engine?
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