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jpmxer

Opinions on synthetic oil for '10-'12 YZ450f's

3 posts in this topic

I just purchased a new '12 450. First Yamaha in many years. I know the older 450's didn't like synthetic oil. I heard complaints about the clutch while using it. I previously rode KTM's and ran nothing but synthetic. Just want to know what others are running and how it seems to be working. I tried searching but didn't find anything on this.

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I just purchased a new '12 450. First Yamaha in many years. I know the older 450's didn't like synthetic oil. I heard complaints about the clutch while using it. I previously rode KTM's and ran nothing but synthetic. Just want to know what others are running and how it seems to be working. I tried searching but didn't find anything on this.

Where did you hear that older bikes didn't like synthetic oil? Maybe some synthetics don't work but not all oils are the same. I have ran Redline polyol ester groupV oil in my Yamahas for years and won't run anything else. One 09 has well over 300 hrs on it with Redoine oil. Have not touched the motor. We do plan on tearing it down before winter though. Have a Rekluse Pro and it still has the original clutch and is ridden hard. These bikes hold one quart of oil, rev to 11,000 rpms and share the engine oil with the tranny. I think people are crazy NOT run a true synthetic if they ride moderatley hard at all.

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...I know the older 450's didn't like synthetic oil. I heard complaints about the clutch while using it. ...

Balderdash. There's absolutely no truth to that. I've run nothing but synthetics or synthetic blends since the '80's and never had any trouble. Last time I heard that it was from somebody who used a cheap clutch kit and runs a different oil every time they change it. Their bargain clutch failed after they used a bargain automotive oil from Walmart, so they blamed the oil.

The facts are that the only oils that MIGHT cause clutch trouble (assuming your clutch is healthy in the first place) are those marked "API ECII". The thing is that these are almost never made in any heavier grade than Xw-30 weight anyway, so you're not apt to run into one by mistake. The only other thing to watch out for is oils for motorcycle engines only marked JASO MB, as these contain high levels of friction modifiers that could also lead to trouble with a clutch.

Any high quality motorcycle specific synthetic marked as compliant with JASO MA is completely safe for your clutch. That's half of what the MA rating means. Most good automotive oils graded Xw-40 or higher are also safe, but generally don't last as long for reasons having to do with viscosity loss when used as transmission lubes, something that the better MC oils are blended to deal with.

It's just one of a number of myths surrounding engine oil that's gone on as long as I can remember. Totally false.

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