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  What brand and weight gear oil do you guys recommend for a 1919 Touring Car?  Do not know when it was when that was last changed, and does the differential take the same fluid?  Can't seem to find that info in the Book of Information.  Thanks in advance for the responses.

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     I believe the original specification was 600W but 1500W is sometimes used.  I believe it's known as "steam cylinder oil"

https://www.google.com/search?q=steam+cylinder+oil&oq=steam+cylinder+oil&aqs=chrome..69i57j0i457i512j0i512l3j0i22i30l5.7522j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

    Meyers sells some.

    The price of a "Mechanics Instruction Manual" will be money well spent.

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1919, steam cylinder oil is what should be used both places. It is still used on steam tractors and locomotives, not very hard to find. Google a local dealer. Make sure you specify steam cylinder, it is not gear oil. Old DBers say a screw driver should stand up in the oil. The thicker the better. I have known some to blend in a tube of grease to thicken the oil if necessary. 

Edited by nearchoclatetown (see edit history)
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  Found the proper 600 W oil and have ordered it.  Now,  here is the biggy!  Where is the fill hole?  I already have checked the Book of Info & the Mechanics book.  I see the drain plug, but where does the oil go to fill it?  There is a plate that says to fill to this level, but there are (5) bolts holding that plate and no reference to fill to.

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     Up to the square plug on the passenger's side?  Not much fun from below.  I took the floorboards up, the top off the transmission and poured it in. 

     It doesn't hurt to have a peek inside every 100 years or so.  

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The oil is poured in via the small plate held by two bolts on the top of the box.

 

DF5EFDEE-EE48-4410-B6DD-738038D736CE.png.de27acf7022cbe9177fc8b13ea6b3357.png


Access is gained by lifting the floor boards.

 

0F435EDD-EBA6-4828-A85F-39CB6555772C.jpeg.20d3c3b6fbc6c239f7d1e1eba6f6dc53.jpeg

 

Either one of the bolts in line with the “to this level” is to be removed temporarily.

The level is full when the oil runs out of the bolt hole, refit the bolt.

Too much oil will cause frothing (not desirable)

 

 

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     Thanks Minibago for the correction and sorry to all for posting inaccuate information.

     I also realised that "the passenger's side" isn't the same for everbody.

    Page 173 of the Mechanics'Instruction Manual says "the level of the grease should never be higher than the top of the reverse idler gear".  I never noticed the plate with the level marked on it.

     I don't know if there are other copper alloys in the transmissions but cars prior to #789400 have bronze bushingsin the countershaft gears so hypoid oils should not be used as the sulphur content is harmul to copper alloys.

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Yes, thanks for the hint about taking one of the bolts out when filling. So, the fitting with square head on other side is for checking or filling from under car with pump. I too take the top plate inspection plate off to refill. 

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Minibago;

     I'm glad to know what products are out there and wasn't suggesting that Penrite isn't suited for use in these dinosaurs.  

     I used hypoid for lots of things it probably wasn't suited for until I learned about the sulphur/copper thing.

     Once upon a time I had a Sunbeam Alpine with a crankcase almost as thirsty as the fuel tank.  Hypoid was less expensive than STP.  I got some funny looks at the filling stations.

     

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Ok 1919, here is what I have found tonight. I had the chance to see an amount of original DB gear oil in an original can tonight. Leaning the can over it took a LONG time before the "oil" moved. It is thicker then the corn head grease I use in steering boxes. The sample of original steering Lube was actually more fluid. I intend to find someone, an oilologist? that can analyze what's in it to give a modern equivalent. 

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In my (substantial) experience, 600W / steam cylinder oil thickens considerably with time, so I change it at 12-15 years.  I have seen some stuff that was in a trans for decades that was almost tar-like.  All this does not imply that the DB oil was in fact 600W or that it was not that thick when produced--but I hazard an educated guess that's the case.

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Grimy, I understand that some oils can thicken or thin over time. The mysterious cup grease had separated with a layer of oil on top of the grease. Everyone asks why it is called cup grease. I think it is because you fill the grease cups with it, nothing special about it. What I am interested in knowing about the gear oil is chemical composition, whether there are any secrets in which dinosaurs were used.  

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40 minutes ago, nearchoclatetown said:

Grimy, I understand that some oils can thicken or thin over time. The mysterious cup grease had separated with a layer of oil on top of the grease. Everyone asks why it is called cup grease. I think it is because you fill the grease cups with it, nothing special about it. What I am interested in knowing about the gear oil is chemical composition, whether there are any secrets in which dinosaurs were used.  

Agree with chemical composition issue but there have been some threads on which modern lubricants of similar consistency might be better.  Sorry I don't have those accessible.  Hope we can find better dinosaurs!  🙂

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16 hours ago, nearchoclatetown said:

Grimy, I understand that some oils can thicken or thin over time. The mysterious cup grease had separated with a layer of oil on top of the grease. Everyone asks why it is called cup grease. I think it is because you fill the grease cups with it, nothing special about it. What I am interested in knowing about the gear oil is chemical composition, whether there are any secrets in which dinosaurs were used.  

yes, the ones with green leaves on them! :)

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All oils, fuels and greases are a blend of ingredients and will degrade over time hence the recommendation for periodic changeout.

All oils, fuels and greases.

Every 12 to 15 years is simply bad maintenance however you look at it.

 

By their very nature the combination elements can (will) either separate and / or have various component parts evaporate, we are dealing with a combination of chemicals after all.

 

These lubricants and fuels also collect dirt and absorb moisture which can cause blockages (sludge) and corrosion.

 

It is not sound engineering practice to judge the correct viscosity by “standing a screwdriver up and timing the fall”

 

Steam oil is designed to function in very high temperatures but also in very wet environments so steam oil is not the correct oil for the DB gearbox.

The 600wt refers to the viscocity and the modern equivalent is SAE 250

 

Simple really.

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600wt oil is correct.

The one made / sold by Macs is fine.

600wt STEAM oil is incorrect

SAE 250 as in the Penrite is a modern oil specifically designed for older gearboxes but with the correct viscocity and no bad additives.

Yes, some modern gearbox oils (not equivalent) do have bad additives.

Temperature and speed of rotation have a bearing here (Pun intended)

Ford model T’s recommend changing the oil every 1,000 miles.

WOW!

We really like to over think these things don’t we?

 

 

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I hate to be contrary here, but 600W in steam oil never did refer to viscosity, and probably referred to the flash point in Fahrenheit. Today it is a brand of steam oil owned by Mobil. You can buy some if you like, Today they offer it in two different viscosities.

 

Steam oil was used commonly in transmissions up until the mid 1930s at least, and probably longer in older cars. It was pretty thick. SAE 250 is indeed likely the closest equivalent. I am not arguing for (or against) the use of 600W.

 

Eating brass is a separate issue. Pick one that is safe for "yellow metals". When you pick something, read the datasheet. That Penrite stuff @Minibago posted looks good. For those looking for Penrite products in the US, Restoration Supply (of California) is the place.

 

 

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      What I know about lubricants could be written on your thumb nail with room to spare.

      What I suspect is that as speeds and loads changed from horse drawn to horsepower the need to improve gear design and come up with lubricants that would stay where needed became a study and division of it's own for those in the power transmission business

     Steam Cylinder Oil is so called because it was used to lubricate the cylinders of steam engines.  Fine only for non condensing engines.  Truly nasty  to recirculate through a boiler.

      It seems to me that when the pioneers first observed rapid and extreme wear of gears the best known solution was to use the pastiest goo known at the time:  Steam Cylinder Oil.

      I'm guessing that 100 years later there are superior lower viscosity lubricants for use in these transmissions and axles.

     

     

     

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On what scale though?

 

600W most likely predates all of them because it comes from the age of steam. Somewhere I have a datasheet for current Mobil steam cylinder oil. I am on a road trip though, so can't just post it. There are four Steam Cylinder oils on the sheet. Two are branded "600W" and two are not. If I remember correctly, one of the "600W" oils is ISO 460 in viscosity and the other is unspecified. The other 2 were thicker, but not branded "600W". The ISO viscosity scale refers to a specific viscosity. The SAE scale does not. They don't line up.

 

Table_5_viscosity_comparison_chart.jpg

 

Ok, I'll stop now too...  :P

 

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
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