Message from Deleted User in MacGuyver - Skills & Academics #mechanics
Welcome to the Mechanics text channel! This channel is dedicated to instructing you on how to properly maintain your car, your motorcycle, or even your lawn mower. Once a week, I will post a lengthy text, with photos, on how to check/change your oil, regulate your tire pressure, change a tire correctly, replace brake pads, and generally keep your vehicles in proper working order. More complex things such as Carburetor rebuilds and tunes will come further down the line. This text channel will start with very simple, yet handy info dumps, such as how to tell the difference between 10W-40 motor oil, and 5W-30. The vehicles that will be used as examples are both of my personal modes of transport.
This is my 2016 Yamaha YZF-R3, nicknamed the R3KT R3, or “Rizzo”. This bike is basically Fisher Price Baby’s First Sports Bike. She has a inline two cylinder, 321cc, liquid cooled engine that produces 35 foot pounds of torque, and 45 horsepower. The transmission is a six-speed sequential. This bike was designed and built for commuting as well as canyon carving and small track usage. She will be used for the majority of engine related info dumps, both because of the small size and simplicity of the engine, and most of the information can be taken and applied to cars in one way or another. She’s sitting at roughly, 6,100 miles and is due for major service at the 7,000 mile milestone. I will document all services done at post them here. Some motorcycle specific information such as chain adjustments and wheel alignment will be posted occasionally. If you own a motorcycle yourself, this should come in handy. If I am traveling from Yuma to either Phoenix or San Diego by myself and not planning on bringing anything sizable back, I will take this.
And here we have my Third Generation (2012) Ford Focus SE, also known as the shitbox, or the mommy mobile. She’s a little rough around the edges visually thanks to a couple of wooden planks sitting on Interstate 8, but functional nonetheless. I clocked over 45,000 miles this last year alone, putting it just past 100,000 miles, so the wear is far more advanced than others of the same make and model on the road. This model specifically is the five door hatchback. We’ll be using this car for some basic essentials, like tire changes. She has a 2 liter Duratec engine that produces 159 horsepower and 149 foot pounds of torque. This same engine was shared with some Mazda cars such as the Mazda 3 of the same year. It has the 5-speed manual transmission, which will be surely be used in the info dump on how to drive a manual transmission. This car is designed exclusively for commuting and travel.
I will also soon have access to a project car. This isn’t an exact photo of it, but it is the same make a model. A friend purchased a 1991 NA6 Mazda Miata a while back and they are interested in building it up as a track car. The car has been nicknamed Milo (not because of THAT Milo, but jokes and bantz are appreciated). The car comes with the 1.6 Liter engine that produces 114 horsepower and 100 foot pounds of torque. Some 1.6 engines came from the factory already drilled and tapped for the oil lines required for turbocharging, at this moment I am not sure if it has that specific 1.6L poweplant. It also has the 5-speed manual transmission. This car was purchased off a local ricer who put the car in rough shape due to mechanical negligence and overall stupidity, this car will be used if and when I discuss how to spot improperly installed items as well as some more performance related topics that will come later.
I currently work an erratic schedule, as of this week and next, my work hours are 12am-8am Mountain Standard Time Wednesday through Sunday. When my work schedule is changed, I will ping this channel and let you all know immediately. I will also post my work schedule. Info dumps are scheduled for Mondays in between 9am and noon MST. A Do Not Disturb status means that I am either at work, away from my computer, or asleep, an Online status means that I am open for questions.
I will also be taking a look at other items with that involve engines and their accessories as well, such as lawn mowers, fuel systems and carburetors.
Also, any info you personally know is also appreciated. While I am here to offer some guidance and expertise, you guys can and should assist each other as well. We all know teamwork makes the dream work and I look forward to helping Identity Evropa amass an army of well maintained shitboxes.
Footnote: If you are interested in getting a motorcycle, I am also open to questions related to such. I will be more than happy to provide someone the recommended resources to help bring them into the motorcycling world. All gear related questions as well as “Is this bike a good starter bike” questions should be DM’d to me to prevent off topic clutter. As we all know, nothing shouts Activism more than ripping a fat wheelie down a city street.
Thanks, fam. 👍🏻
Also, if you are having any issues chasing some electrical gremlins around your cars wiring, we also have some in house electricians. I can help you with plugging in, unplugging, and where to route wiring, but propper ampage, voltage and insulation may be better handled by guys like @Deleted User and @Lebens
I had one of the very first Miatas, in red. 1990.
The oil filter is in an annoying location.
The oil filter on a friend's 2000 Pontiac Sunfire was worse. I still shudder when I think about it.
Footnote: Read your vehicle’s owner's manual. Do it, seriously.
Motor oil! We all know what it is, we (hopefully) all know all vehicles on the road need it. But what do those numbers on the bottle mean? What’s the difference between 10W-40 and 0W-50? Synthetic, Conventional? What’s the difference? What do you mean I should do an oil change before the winter starts? These are all pretty commonly asked questions when the topic of motor oil is discussed. All of these are going to be answered, and you will be able to impress your normie friends with your motor oil knowledge.
You should always have a few quarts of the same brand and type of motor oil currently in your car in your garage at all times, you never know if your car springs a bit of an oil leak and you need to replace the lost oil before you have the time to find and fix the leak.
To start off with, read your vehicle’s owner’s manual. No really, go read it. All of it.
There are a quite a few different kinds of motor oil. Synthetic, Synthetic blend, High-Mileage, and Conventional motor oil.
All are pretty self-explanatory, but we’ll go over them just in case. Doesn’t hurt to know the difference!
Synthetic oil is chemically engineered in a lab before being mass produced. The molecules in the motor oil are far more aligned and suited for high temperatures. If you drive a performance oriented car, synthetic motor oil is probably going to be what you’re looking for.
Synthetic Blend motor oil is a mix of both synthetic and conventional motor oils. This oil is specifically used for its anti-oxidation properties and it’s good for low temp operations. I use Blend in my lawn mower.
High Milage is pretty self explanatory. If your car has more 75,000 miles on its’ odometer, high-milage is going to be for you.
Conventional motor oil is pretty much what it says on the tin, or bottle. This is what’s typically recommended for newer cars, and for areas where there isn’t a huge difference in ambient temperatures.
So what do those fancy numbers mean on the bottle? The most commonly used motor oil in my area is 10W-40. For some background information, the climate of where I am is typically a mild winter, with an extremely hot winter. Winter’s typically don’t dip below mid 40F at night, while during the summer the highs here can reach up to 120F! Deserts are weird like that, 10W-40 can generally handle the extreme difference in outside temperatures here.
If you live in a place where it regularly gets below freezing during the winter, you have plenty of options.
The lower the first number, the better suited said motor oil is for colder temperatures, remember that.
For me, I use Pennzoil 10W-40 in both my R3 and my Focus. For my gas powered lawn mower, I just use gas station brand off the shelf blend stuff. I change the oil on the R3 every 3,000 miles, and on the Focus every 5,000. The mower gets a change every year.
So, that first number on the front there. The first number on a bottle of motor oil is always going to mean the viscosity. The lower the number, the less viscous the fluid is. While the higher the number, the more it is. To put things simply, the lower number means that the motor oil is more water like, while the higher number means the oil is far more thicker. So 20W motor oil is going to be thicker than 0W. If I ever find out anyone of you refer to higher viscous motor oil as “thicc” I will find you.
When I first started getting into mechanics, I was taught that the W after that first number stood for weight. Hey, it made sense for me at fourteen. But guess what, it doesn’t stand for weight at all. That W actually stands for winter. The first number with the W right next to it will mean that the motor oil will hold a different viscosity right after startup, or on a cold morning.
The second number coincides with that first number. While the first number refers the viscosity upon the engine starting, the second number refers to the high temperature rating for it. If you constantly bang through your gears on your way to work, or carve up the canyons on weekends a higher secondary number is going to be better for you. If you live in an area like I do, where it gets ridiculously hot outside, that secondary number is going to be beneficial to you as well.
You should always go by what your owner’s manual says. If the owner’s manual says use a Synthetic Blend 10W-30, or 0W-20, use it. If you have an older vehicle, or live in a place with odd temp fluctuations, it’s best to do your research before you do an oil change. Just because 10W-40 works for me, doesn’t mean it’s going to be an exact fit for you.
The W stands for winter because an engine is almost always going to be cold when it's first started up. It's equating cold with winter.
SAE stands for Society of Automotive Engineers. These guys are behind the rating system for motor oil.
I like my motor oil T H I C C