View Full Version : 2-Stroke Oil - which is best?

28-09-2005, 01:45 PM
I've seen reviews on US web sites of 2-stroke oils which claim to boost performance and reduce smoke.

Does anyone have good evidence of why one 2-stroke oil is better than others?

I've recently switched from Valvoline to Castrol and probably should use Yammalube. It's got me stuffed as they all seem to look the same to me!

28-09-2005, 02:48 PM
I've used both valvoline and castrol extensively. I can't really notice any difference - they both work, get used up and cost the same money to replace.

28-09-2005, 03:04 PM
With my little motor (25 Merc) I can really tell the difference between brands when trolling due to the smoke. Best in order of preference would be Quicksilver then Shell Nautilas then BP. Don't rate Castrol and Valvoline is one of the worst.

28-09-2005, 03:11 PM
i use valvoline and after asking this question on fishnet i came to the conclusion that yamalube would be lot better even if dearer

28-09-2005, 03:16 PM
Actually, might depend on the motor. The 25 merc Smithy refers to would be using a pre-mix fuel whereas mine is oil injected and mixed at the reeds. Also, mine being oil injected, it runs a 200:1 mix at idle whereas the pre-mix is going to be full ratio all the time from start up onwards- different oils would be more noticable in this case. My recommendation is to use the engine less and drift fish.

29-09-2005, 12:18 PM
I got some FUCHS off Lucky Phil and I was impressed with it when I used it as it seemed to smoke a lot less then other brands I have used in the past. I am glad t worked well as I got a 20ltr drum from him.
BP and Yammalube is the worst for smoke I have found.

30-09-2005, 02:04 PM
I was told after my first service that I must use yammalube or void my warranty, is this legal? And how would they tell/prove this?

Only just changed from 25:1 to 50:1 and it still smokes more than I would like .
I thought 2005 model 2 strokes and oil would be a bit better than that.

30-09-2005, 02:08 PM
Yamlube has a blue dye that stains the bearings, apparently


30-09-2005, 06:10 PM
Rainbowrunner, #100% illegal, thats Mafia tactics, if they state you must use an oil then they must supply it free of charge - bottom line!!.
Do not give this stand-over business another cent of your time or money! They will happily screw you just as easily from any other direction.

>:( >:( fnq

01-10-2005, 01:47 PM
I was told after my first service that I must use yammalube or void my warranty, is this legal? #

No it is not leagle to say that.
Go back and ask for your free oil.

01-10-2005, 02:06 PM
my etec is computer programmed to run synthetic xd100 oil and supposedly will run like shizza on other oils

03-10-2005, 02:42 PM
This what was posted by an "expert" on iboats.com. These guys recommend synthetic oils which probably cost a lot more but if they do the job I'm happy to try them.

"Outboard oils with large amounts of PIB additive smoke less than regular oils. Some of these are Johnson-Evinrude XD-50, Merc Premium Plus, Yamaha 2M, and Pennzoil synthetic BLEND. These are listed in the order of least smoke (XD-50) to more smoke compared to regular TC-W3 oils."

03-10-2005, 05:15 PM
About a year ago I tried really hard to buy the Penzoil full synthetic here in Australia, but it is not imported because one of the large refinery companys now own it :'( Shame it would have been the ONLY good outboard oil in Australia with a realistic price.

After chasing this subject up before I do have a problem using tcw3 only rated oils, it's a rubbish oil - doesn't feel nice knowing that! - while pouring it for use in the outboard.

For those that would like to run a true 'quality' oil that does protect the engine, do a few searches useing the acronims/words below in combinations etc and then cross referencing the new information found.

Be warned the learning curve is steep (and boring) but worth it once it all starts to make more sense.

JASO, ISO, ISO-L-EGD, JATRE-1, ISO-L-EGD , TCW3, Bright stock,

cheers fnq

03-10-2005, 05:18 PM
Just to wet the whistle of those who are interested, It's long!!:

The need for a clean two-stroke outboard oil was recognized when piston ring groove carbonization was seen as a primary cause for engine failure and a new formula designated TC-W II was developed. While this oil was significantly better for outboard use and was phosphate free, it still was not the optimum two-stroke oil for engines operating above 8,000 rpm. The phosphate free mandate was from a concern raised by environmentalists that realized that outboard engine use could permanently pollute fresh waterways just as the soap industry was beginning to eliminate phosphates from their products for the same reasons. But, snowmobiles, motorcycles and quads do not emit their exhaust directly into the water, as outboards do. Recently, efforts to develop an even cleaner outboard oil have produced the latest NMMA TC-W3 and this oil, although containing no bright stock 150, has produced better levels of lubricity and cleanliness in piston ring groove areas, however, it is still not nearly as good as a purely 'snowmobile use' developed oil.
The BIA evolved into the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) which works closely with the outboard manufacturers. The NMMA mandated that all oils would contain non-metallic detergent additives, no phosphorus or phosphates, if they were to have the approval of the NMMA and the outboard engine manufacturers agreed to recommend only the NMMA approved oils. (Politically correct move)
Also, many marine dealers were concerned about the flammability and flash point of out board oils. Since larger engines were now consuming huge amounts of oil they had to stock several hundred cases of oil per season. This amount of oil stored in one location had alerted the fire marshals and insurance companies attention and a solution to this risk was addressed by the NMMA. Higher flash point oil with a flash point over 200 deg. F was what they needed to achieve a category 3B fluid rating, just enough to avoid the hazardous storage and shipping restrictions they were facing with all other two cycle oils. Oil manufacturers were forced to use TC-W3 additives or blends with special high flash point solvents if they were allowed to keep the NMMA license. The high flash solvents caused all sorts of unburned oil problems in engines, but the insurance carriers were happy. The combination of non-metallic detergents and high flash solvents in the new TC-W 3 oils later caused some severe ring sticking problems in many engines and Yamaha actually required owners to use a 'ring-free' fuel additive to maintain their warranty, a symptom of being forced by the NMMA to recommend the new oils! This additive actually would un-do the damage done by the TC-W3 oils!
This is almost exactly the same situation that developed with the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the Automobile Manufacturers. They were dealing with legislation that mandated exhaust emission systems to last a certain mileage under warranty and catalytic converter failure was thought, in theory only, to be linked to the zinc-phosphorus content in motor oils. The API, in response to the auto makers, soon mandated restricted levels of these additives and is slowly lowering them. (Politically correct move) The problem was that motorcyclists depended on these zinc-phosphorus additives to protect their higher reving motors from damage and they were a victim of a legislation that did not even apply to them (very few motorcycles have a catalytic converter, and remember: this is only a theory)). Now snowmobilers are victims of this exact same legislative situation, the elimination of phosphorus from two-cycle oils. But they do not need to be! Why? Because motorcyclists and snowmobilers can buy motorcycle oils and snowmobile oils and bypass the restrictions placed on automobiles and outboard boats.
Snow job.
Sea-Doo and Ski-Doo didn't go with the NMMA, they refused to allow their engines to be set up for potential destruction and recommended to their owners NOT TO EVER USE TC-W3 oils! Polaris bought the TC-W3 sales pitch at first, recognizing an inventory advantage to having only one two cycle oil to be used in their watercraft, quads and snowmobiles. But they soon discovered the same problems many had already found with the TC-W3 oils when used in a sled. Ring sticking, exhaust port blocking and low temperature flow problems. Suddenly all those advantages of the TC-W3 oils they read about from the brochures weren't working out when weighed against all the potential for engine failures! Have you noticed they have now gone back to purely snowmobile developed snowmobile oils? Currently, there are not any snowmobile OEM's recommending the use of outboard NMMA TC-W3 oil, and there is a reason for this. They are not acceptable in today's power-valve equipped snowmobiles! Only oil companies with little actual knowledge of snowmobiles and their specific needs continue to try to sell snowmobilers an outboard oil for their snowmobile...and this is because they have a vested interest in doing so...economy of scale by combining several markets into one and selling just one oil. Beware of these all-purpose oils! Do not fall for their sales pitch!
It gets better.
In Japan, engine manufacturers have developed a series of strenuous engine tests, called "M-345" that can identify poor quality oils if they donít measure up in performance. They tested over 250 samples of two-stroke oils worldwide and used the survey results to establish these engine tests. This became the JASO M-345 classification system. (Japanese automobile standards organization).
The tests include a detergency test, lubricity test, initial torque test, exhaust smoke test and exhaust blocking test. These tests have a much closer connection to actual snowmobile engine applications compared to TC-W3 tests which are all conducted on raw-water cooled outboard engines. And for the first time ever, an oil can fail the test if it smokes too much!
The detergency test evaluates the oilís ability to maintain the cleanliness of critical engine parts, including exhaust power valves. This is very important on power valve equipped Rotax, Yamaha and Polaris engines. The lubricity test measures two things. First, the engine is run with a load for 50 minutes then the cooling system is disconnected for ten minutes and the resulting drop in horsepower is recorded. This cycle is repeated several times and each drop in power is compared and it must not vary more than a specified amount or be more than a specified amount. Then the engine is run with increasingly leaner oil ratios: 60:1, 100:1 then 150:1. If no seizure occurs and power is maintained within a specified percentage, the oil passes. The initial torque test measures the engineís startability when cold, an important consideration for big displacement 3-cylinder sleds.
The exhaust blocking and smoking tests are run by mixing the test oil at an over-rich 10:1 ratio and running it in a two-stroke portable generator. The exhaust is channeled into a chamber where a photo cell measures the light that can pass through the smoke. It sounds crude but it works! Finally, a real world test to measure exhaust smoke from two-stroke engines! The exhaust blocking test simply examines the pencil sized exhaust outlet for carbon blocking. At a 10:1 ratio, these tests are very hard to pass. The highest JASO rating is "FD", which equals the ISO-L-EGD rating. Lower ratings are "FC", "FB" and "FA." Most TC-W3 oils will not pass any of these tests!