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Lead Additive or Valve Saver


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#1 chieffan ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 12:33 PM

How many of you guys & gals use a lead additive or a valve saver in the fuel for your older engines?  I for one use it in all my older engiens.  Started using it in my '50's farm tractors years ago when I started a haying service.  Later in an old cast iron 10 HP Briggs on my wood splitter.  Since then I use it in all my engines except the newer one built for the 'modern' fuel we get now days.  Just wondered how many others use it or even thought about it.


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#2 MH81 ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 12:39 PM

I use some 2 cycle gas from time to time for the same reason
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#3 EricFromPa ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 01:37 PM

You could have a Good engine shop put hardened valve seats in and regrind the valves.That's really all you need to do.Or use a lead additive.The lead additives build up a light coating on the valve seats and cushion and help seal the older valves.

 

I know that the old Gravely walk behinds don't like new gas.The valves and seats on them burn pretty easily.

 

The old Lawn Boy 2 cycle oil had a lead additive in it but it smoked pretty bad and carboned up the muffler and exhaust port.Using an additive will carbon up the internals a bit and that carbon will swell up and cause clearance problems if the engine isn't used enough to regularly burn it out. 


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#4 classic ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 04:59 PM

Another thing to think about with the older Briggs engines is adding rotaters instead of using the plain retainers on the valve springs. Briggs started with no rotaters, to using just an exhaust valve rotater, to eventually using an intake and exhaust valve rotater. The rotaters allow the valve to rotate when opening and closing, and this allows the valve face and seat to wear evenly. If you decide to add rotaters, you must also use the shorter valve springs that go along with them. I'm installing rotaters and the correct springs in a Briggs model 23R6D engine from 1956, since it has the old style retainers.
The single best thing to do is to install hardened valve seats as mentioned above. Do it once, and you don't have to worry about the lead additives. Bronze valve guide inserts are also helpful, and I finally found the obsolete tools to install them in my 23R6D.
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#5 Cvans ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 05:01 PM

Guess I've never used the stuff in any of the older farm equipment and I can't recall anyone around here having any problems. Guess we are lucky. 


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#6 Cat385B ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 05:06 PM

Pop the screen out of the gas can, drop a couple of fishing weights in there, and I'm good to go for a couple of years.

 

lead_torpedo_sinkers_large.jpg


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#7 chieffan ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 08:06 PM

I would like to think using a lead addative would extend the useful life on the original engine for several years.  If your going the route of a rebuild, by all means go the full route or just replace the engine with modern one.  If I can squeeze another 10 years out of my engines I will do it and let the next guy worry about the rebuild part.  Thanks for the input from all of you.  Very interesting in the difference of opinion on this.


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#8 Bolens 1000 ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 08:18 PM

I used to add lead additive to all my equipment until I found out years ago most manufactures from the early 60's and on already were using hardened steel valves and lead was not needed. In the older equipment you really need to be working it to the max and alot of these old machines are now show pieces and rarely see a high idle for more than an hour at a time and never get hot enough to add lead.


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#9 Bruce Dorsi ONLINE  

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Posted June 04, 2015 - 09:42 PM

I am also one who doesn't believe a lead substitute is needed.

 

When lead was first removed from gasoline, there was a lot of doom & gloom predicted, and a lot of automotive valve seats were installed unnecessarily.   ...Over time, it has been proven that in most engines, the absence of lead did not destroy valve seats as predicted.

 

I'm also a person who didn't fall for all the hype about the benefits of filling car tires with nitrogen. 


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#10 chieffan ONLINE  

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Posted June 05, 2015 - 07:38 AM

Looks like a toss up - - some do and some don't.  I don't think it hurts to use it and an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.  Have several bottle yet so will use it in all the old stuff.



#11 sodisr OFFLINE  

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Posted June 05, 2015 - 11:14 AM

Chief...    I used to use it in my older car,,,,    60s  I always thought it gave it a little more HP.. It felt like that anyway...  I now have the hardened seats..       BUT I'm still a sucker for snake oils... :D


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#12 chieffan ONLINE  

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Posted June 06, 2015 - 08:16 AM

I used to add lead additive to all my equipment until I found out years ago most manufactures from the early 60's and on already were using hardened steel valves and lead was not needed. In the older equipment you really need to be working it to the max and alot of these old machines are now show pieces and rarely see a high idle for more than an hour at a time and never get hot enough to add lead.

The engines I am talking about are from the 40's and 50's, possibly early 60's so they probably don't have the hardened valves or seats.  Anytime your running a tractor with a tiller or deck you are pushing towards the MAX as far as work load.  When the rpm starts falling it has reached MAX and these aren't show pieces, these are working tractors.  Your right , show pieces don't need the additive.  GT's were not built to be show pieces, they were built to work.  The additive is in the fuel all the time, not just when the engine gets hot.



#13 Husky OFFLINE  

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Posted June 08, 2015 - 11:17 AM

I use marvel mystery oil and lucas top end and startron. In the past 6 years on issues with sticky carbs and no issues with valves. Not saying this is the right method but it works for me and all my tube frame and large frame tractors.


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#14 Cvans ONLINE  

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Posted June 08, 2015 - 04:59 PM

I have to agree with you on using Marvel Mystery oil. I don't believe in wonder products in a can but Marvel comes about as close as you can get. I've seen some pretty incredible changes in engines ( 2 cycle, 4 cycle, and diesel engines) after running the stuff. 

Whether it would be a good substitute for lead I can't say.


Edited by Cvans, June 08, 2015 - 05:00 PM.





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