Once again HPP was to spend a day on the dyno with Bob and Craig Wise of RaceKrafters. This time Project Pure Poncho (aka The Mule) would be used to do testing on oil instead of swapping parts or making tuning decisions. The protocol was to run a series of oil weights through the engine and see how it responds in horsepower, torque, and oil pressure.
Our 467 Mule engine prepared...
Our 467 Mule engine prepared for another round of testing.
There has been a good deal of buzz about oil the past few years with changes in chemical composition. For this reason, we were looking forward to working with Brad Penn to supply our oil needs for this test. By sticking with one manufacturer, we are able to control the test and provide accurate results. Brad Penn supplied three test weights from its extensive offerings. The Mule would have its 7-quart oil pan filled with 0W-30, 10W-40, and 20W-50 from the company’s partial synthetic line (a blend of mineral and synthetic oil). RaceKrafters uses Brad Penn oil in its high-horsepower street/strip engines. The Mule already had Brad Penn 30-weight break-in oil in it.
The protocol of the test was to baseline the engine with the original break-in oil, and then drain and refill with each product, along with a new ACDelco oil filter. Three to four runs would be made with each grade of oil and the results tabulated. Much care was taken to keep oil temperature for each test as close to identical as possible, while maintaining similar water temperature.
Brad Penn oil is formulated to eliminate the lubrication concerns of Pontiac owners. The oil has all of the necessary phosphorus (1,340 ppm) and zinc (1,500 ppm) that is required for any type of camshaft or valvespring pressure. No further additives are required.
Due to the crude stock Brad Penn uses, the oil has a tenacious ability to cling to the internal engine parts, which we witnessed first hand. In engineering parlance, this is identified as wettability, and it’s important for a Pontiac engine. Even after being idle for long periods of time, many of the parts will not go dry—a key to performance and long life.
To properly understand our test and how the Brad Penn product applies for Pontiacs, a good foundation of knowledge needs to be established.
This time it’s oil. We tested three different viscosities from Brad Penn to gauge the effect on power.
Friction is the resistance that one surface or object encounters when contacting and sliding over another. If the surfaces are rough, small irregularities will fit together at the contact area to create a mechanical lock or hindrance to motion. If the surfaces are extremely smooth, the force fields around the molecules will attract each other, and the parts will resist motion due to the molecular attraction. Friction on dry surfaces is a result of both molecular attraction and mechanical irregularities.
Friction between sliding surfaces can be reduced by the presence of a lubricant. The function of the lubricant is to displace the two surfaces and reduce both the mechanical interference and molecular attraction. The lubricant should be able to adhere to each surface by molecular attraction and yet be amenable to molecular displacement.