Do you want the Road Tax system to change? Do you have thoughts on the potential changes to the Road Tax system? | No thanks
Synthetic gearbox oil - jonbenj
My Seicento sporting is just about due its first service, and I am considering having the gearbox oil changed, as per HJs recommendation. Is it worthwhile going for Mobil 1 or similar? Gear change is sightly notchy, particularly 2nd. I regularly look at a forum for air-cooled BMW bikes, and general consensus is that fully synthetic transmission oil makes an enormous difference. I realise that I'm not comparing like with like, but I'd be interested to hear other folks' views. (I'm also slightly paranoid about gearboxes after the one on my partners clio diesel lunched itself!)

jonbenj
Synthetic gearbox oil - David Lacey
Personally, on a new car with perhaps a 3 year warranty, I wouldn't contemplate changing the gearbox oil whilst under the warranty. It would probably invalidate the warranty on the whole vehicle, which in my mind, is just not worth the risk

Rgds
David
Re: Synthetic gearbox oil - jonbenj
The cars only got a 1 year warranty, with 2 months left to run. The car was pre-registered, and missed out on Fiat's new 3 year warranty by 2 days, but the price was right. I've thought about extending the warranty at the dealer, but local anecdotal evidence would suggest that "our award winning highly trained technicians" couldn't be trusted to service a McLaren baby buggy, never mind something with an engine, so I think my trusted back-street garage will be getting the business.
Is there any reason, other than cost, why manufacturers don't fill gearboxes with fully synthetic from the word go?
Re: Synthetic gearbox oil - Alvin Booth
Reminds me of a mate of mine in the Army. He did an oil change on his Land Rover, This is 1957 by the way. left it to drain and forgot about it.
Couple of hours he jumps in and roars away. A few miles up the road the gearbox seizes and he is towed back into the camp.
Old Geoff being canny refilled the gearbox with oil before the REME turn up to tow it to Central workshops at Majede in South Malaya for repair.
A week later its returned with a REME (Rough Engineering Made Easy) Sergeant driving it.
"Where's the t*** who drives this"
Geoff is hurriedly pushed forward. "Do I look stupid soldier" says Sarg.
"No Sarge" says our Geoff.
"Then how the f*** do you think you can get away with sending a seized up gearbox full of brand new oil"
After another ten minutes of venting his rage on our Geoff we managed to mollify him with a couple of pints at the naafi and he let him off without reporting it.
The moral of this is that if you did have any subsequent problem with your gearbox jonbenj you would drain down your synth and replace with OLD oil.

Alvin
Nice one Alvin - David Lacey
Hmmmmm yes I like that.....
10/10 for trying though.......
Re: Nice one Alvin - Alyn Beattie
On a slightly different tack

Many years ago I drove lorries for a living. I was working for a firm driving 1960's ERFs. Real beasts. One of the other drivers had an even older ERF with a Gardner 150 fitted. (If you know what that is you are at least as old as me)
This lorry was a real bitch, so he decided to run it without topping up the engine oil, wreck the engine, and hopefully be allocated a newer unit.
In order not to get caught he carried with him a few gallons of old engine oil to pour into the old girl once it had seized.

Sure enough on a wet and cold Monday morning on his way to the Midlands the thing seized up on the Pengraig bank above Ross- on- Wye. I caugt up with him about 1/4 hour after the dirty deed. He had already poured in the dirty oil and was waiting for it to cool down. Afer a further short wait he tried the starter and the b____y thing fired into life.

To cut a long story short that old unit was still going when I left the firm about 6 months later. It burnt more oil than it used to, but otherwise no difference.

It was always said you could not break an old Gardner and after that incident I believed it.

Ahhhhhh those were the days.
Siezes I have known - Darcy Kitchin
Sorry guys but it's a Citroen one again.
In 1980 I used to run an LHD Citroen Dyane (like a 2CV but with more angular body panels). It had a 435cc flat twin air-cooled motor with no oil filter. It also had a detachable muffler like a 2CV over the grille to cut the airflow in cold weather round town, ensuring that the heater worked and the oil got up to temp. The handbook said don't use it on open roads.
One day I was given a rush job that meant a blast (?) down the M1 from Leeds to Wakefield. It was one of those October days that had started off frosty and was now bright warm sunshine.
There's an incline out of Leeds that it had taken OK before, but today it seemed slower than usual, even in third. Eventually, the note of the engine changed and I pulled over to investigate. The engine siezed as I declutched to stop.
When I lifted the bonnet, was that engine hot? It was pinging and cracking and creaking as it cooled down, and yes, I had foolishly left the muffler on. I took the opportunity to revise some notes I had for the job, and in about 30 mins, the scary noises had stopped.
More in hope than anger, I tried the starter and was astounded to hear it running again. It carried on for a couple of years after that with no discernible ill effects.
Re: Nice one Alvin - Stuart B
Alyn Beattie wrote:
>
> On a slightly different tack

Well this is a marinised Gardner story, so going on a different tack is quite appropriate.
>
> It was always said you could not break an old Gardner and
> after that incident I believed it.

I had heard a story which I had always sort of poo pooed until an ancient Scottish fisherman demonstrated it. He held a herring, admittedly a small herring, in front of the air intake of his Gardner, let it go, in went the herring, engine continued to run with nary a cough. That taught me not to bet unless I knew it was a winner, fortunately it was only for a couple of pints of heavy.
Re: Nice one Alvin - honest john
I'd change the gearbox oil for the reasons I've always given. Especially since it's a FIAT gearbox.

HJ
 

Ask Honest John Right column

Value my car