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Oils and Lubricants

Hi everyone.

Despite the problematic search for a radiator... a friend and myself are going to start the Durant up this weekend after a lengthy rest. We are trying to determine how our waterpump rebuild fared. We are going to use a large garbage container full if water and run hoses to and from it... then just run it for a few minutes to see if it is cycling the water properly.

Question is however about oil. I have been reading about oils for vintage cars in a number of forums. Many suggest using 15w40 diesel oil. Does that sound right for this car?

Also, I would greatly appreciate if there is someone who can go over the lube and greasing in a youtube video. There are close to 50 different parts shown in the video that require regular greasing with no guide to show how or exactly where.

See mention of Steam cylinder oil and cup grease. Are these still readily available?


Where Are You From? Langley BC

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1928 Model M2

Re: Oils and Lubricants

Hi Gerald;
There are many more Experts and I do mean Experts on this forum than me, but I'll offer my two cents worth and we will see what the other opinions are. First I have never heard of using Diesel oil for our cars. I have heard many use straight 30 weight non-detergent oil for them. I've even heard of some that have had rebuilt engines using the synthetic oil, but only for newly rebuild engines. The 600 weight oil for transmissions and differentials or rear ends is available, form several sources. I think Frank sell it as well as other Model A & T dealers. Durant/Stars have many lubrication points on them and I guess the best way is to get a diagram if you can find one for your car and start from the front and work back. Just my thoughts.

Where Are You From? Oviedo, Florida

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1928 Durant Model 65

Re: Oils and Lubricants

The original steam cylinder oil was made from whale blubber and is no longer available. However, there are lots of steam engines still running so an equivalent is available. (fat-based). For Durant transmissions, GL-1 oil can be used since it is kind to brass parts. It is also known as Worm Gear oil. Some say not to worry too much if you use the modern 70-90 transmission greases, since they claim the brass has to be quite hot before the undesirable chemical reactions take place.

Diesel engine oil has some anti-wear chemicals that aren't allowed in oils for cars with catalytic convertors. Almost anything is better than what was available when these engines were designed. Oil changes every 1000 miles was still common practice in the early 1960s. Oil lubricates, cools, cleans, and prevents corrosion. It has a lot to do, so don't skimp with changes.

In the bigger cities, there are lubricant stores. Most any small town tractor dealership has various lubricants. Outboard motor shops also have some of them. Cup grease is the same as gun grease. Axle or wheel bearing grease is also available.

Water pump grease is something like Steam cylinder oil that is soluble in water. If it were not, your radiator could get clogged with grease.

Do You own a car built by Durant? Yes


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