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Discussion Starter #23
That would probably be a good idea just to give us some data.
Yeah, it would be good to see how the fluid is holding up. Shoot me a PM when you're ready and we can talk details.
 

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I think the red is a new label. The spec looks to be updated as opposed to the grey.
 

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Discussion Starter #27 (Edited)
@XtremeRevolution

I found this red label Amsoil locally...would you reccommend it in the 124? I can;t find the grey label "classic" that you linked in your OP. Here are pics of both.



The red one is the low-SAPS formula designed for emissions compatibility with diesel particulate filters and 3-way gasoline catalytic converters. It's a bit more expensive than the classic-ESP.

It helps to just refer to these oils with respect to their MB specification since that's ultimately what the MS-12991 spec is derived from. Classic ESP is MB 229.5 spec, and Improved ESP is 229.51 spec.

Based on what I'm seeing recommended from other manufacturers, both oil specs are OK to use in the Multiair 1.4 Turbo engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #28 (Edited)
Also worth noting, @sharkcohen is using AMSOIL's Preferred Customer program. If you have more than this vehicle, the account really makes sense.

The Preferred Customer program is like a costco account, for AMSOIL products. Annual registration fee is $20 USD or $30 CAD. On subsequent renewals when set to auto-renew, it's $16 USD and $20 CAD per year.

The account gives you 20-25% off on all AMSOIL products, and orders over $100 USD or $130 CAD get free shipping. With AMSOIL having oils available for a myriad of different applications, from weed whackers to boat outboards, motorcycles, and even commercial oils like hydraulics and compressors, the free freight limit is pretty easy to reach.

I personally run AMSOIL in my 2011 Honda Odyssey, 2012 Chevy Cruze, the 124 Spider Abarth (in transmission and engine for all three vehicles, including filters), my weed whacker, hedge trimmer, push mower, zero turn mower, chainsaw (2-stroke and bar/chain oil), 1959 Evinrude 35hp outboard (2-stroke oil, marine gear oil, and water-resistant grease), all of my firearms, and even my kitchen cabinets (AMSOIL MP). I undercoat the Cruze for corrosion protection with AMSOIL MPHD, I use AMSOIL's PI (PEA based top end cleaner) in all three vehicles, the water-resistant grease on my two trailers and all automotive zerk fittings, and even use AMSOIL silicone spray on some of the kid's toys to quiet the squeaks. I even use AMSOIL arctic grease in the BNR (Forge) wastegate actuator on the Cruze since it tends to be a bit slow in the winter otherwise. I use the ISO 100 compressor oil in my Eagle 2-stage 24 gallon compressor and AMSOIL air tool oil in all of my tools.

It's very convenient to get all of my lubricants for the year or season with a one-stop shop knowing I'm getting the best quality on the market. I haven't been disappointed in any of these oils, but I've been pleasantly impressed with how easily my compressor fires up even in sub-zero (F) temps and how smooth my air tools run, and the throttle response on my 2-stroke equipment at half-mix ratios on AMSOIL Saber 2-stroke oil. I can go on all day, but just wanted to point out, AMSOIL makes a lot more than just engine/trans/diff oil, and all of it is the quality you would expect from AMSOIL.

If you're interested in this, check out the link below and shoot me a PM and I can get you more details:

https://www.amsoil.com/shop/by-product/buy-wholesale/preferred-customer-registration/?code=PREG6M-EA&zo=5224266
 

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Yup, I’m servicing 3 vehicles with my preferred customer account. The small cost of the program pays itself off very quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter #30
AMSOIL's Signature Series Multi-Vehicle ATF, which is recommended for this transmission, has just been released in the Easy-Pack packaging! This makes should make drains and fills much easier as you don't need a pump. Refer to the change procedure I outlined here:
https://www.124spider.org/forum/369-oils-fluids-fuel-additives-lubrications/33184-atf-oil.html

Check out the ATF here:
https://www.amsoil.com/shop/by-product/transmission-fluid/automatic/signature-series-multi-vehicle-synthetic-automatic-transmission-fluid/?code=ATFPK-EA&zo=5224266




Also, for those of you who prefer it, the 75W-90 GL-4 MTF is also available in the Easy-Pack packaging, which eliminates the need for the fluid pump. It seems like people like AMSOIL Synchromesh more out of the two, particularly in colder conditions below ~50F, which isn't yet available in the Easy-Pack packaging, but if you prefer the 75W-90 GL-4, you'll be happy to hear it comes in this packaging as well now. Check it out here:

https://www.amsoil.com/shop/by-product/transmission-fluid/manual/manual-transmission-and-transaxle-gear-lube-75w-90/?code=MTGPK-EA&zo=5222466

 

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I just came across this video on Youtube. I have been extremely pleased with Amsoil products in my car. This video reinforces my position.

 

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I've been using the Amsoil Severe Gear 75W90 in my differential for 8,000 miles including numerous track days. I've had no issues so I plan to stay with that until @XtremeRevolution tells us something better is available.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
I ran 75w110 in my NC Miata diff based on this thread, starting at post 12: Differential Fluid Change @ 10,000 miles? ......will probably do the same in the 124.
Running a higher viscosity than needed in a rear differential will not provide any longevity benefits unless you are breaking the film, which you shouldn't be on a GL-5 gear oil. It will however generate more heat and slow down LSD engagement. Post 12 is missing some critical details; he claims hypoid gear oils haven't improved. Sure, I'd agree, if you're using conventional based cheap stuff off the Walmart shelf.

However, high end companies like AMSOIL, Torco, Redline, and Motul, just to name a few, are making MUCH, MUCH better gear oils even in the same viscosity. They are making finely tuned friction modifier packages, they are adding esters for extreme heat stability, they are using fast-burn, aggressive extreme pressure additives and even additives that increase the film strength of the oil by orders of magnitude.

Furthermore, the author of post 12 claims that an oil can be sold below the spec required by the OEM. Bull$h!t. SAE viscosity specs are clearly published. SAE-90 gear oils range from 13.5 to 18.5 cSt at 100C, and all SAE-90 viscosity oils will fall under that spec, and are published in their datasheets.

Be careful what you read on the internet. Some of that information is based on elementary understanding of tribology principles, and some of it is woefully outdated.
 

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I guess we all might read and interpret different things in that thread but what I got out of it was the same thing as another poster restating what the OP of the Miata thread mentioned:

"the old 90W had a range of 13.5-24 (average 19.5). In 2006 sae j306 changed to narrow the range of 90W to 13.5-18.5 and added 110W 18.5-24 cSt."

The OP in that old Miata thread does nothing but build differentials for a living. Amsoil lists 75w90 but also lists the 75w110 diff fluid for the old Miata NC application (2012 MAZDA MIATA (2.0L 4 -cyl Engine Code [F] L) Motor Oil, Filters and Lubricants - AMSOIL) which from the factory came with 90W......nothing is recommended for the current gen 124 or Miata on the Amsoil site so I may reach out to Amsoil technical for their thoughts. I was assuming the current gen differential was based on the NC diff since I know some have swapped ND diffs/parts into their NC but you know what they say about assumptions........we do share a variation of the NC transmission.
 

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Discussion Starter #36 (Edited)
I guess we all might read and interpret different things in that thread but what I got out of it was the same thing as another poster restating what the OP of the Miata thread mentioned:

"the old 90W had a range of 13.5-24 (average 19.5). In 2006 sae j306 changed to narrow the range of 90W to 13.5-18.5 and added 110W 18.5-24 cSt."

The OP in that old Miata thread does nothing but build differentials for a living. Amsoil lists 75w90 but also lists the 75w110 diff fluid for the old Miata NC application (2012 MAZDA MIATA (2.0L 4 -cyl Engine Code [F] L) Motor Oil, Filters and Lubricants - AMSOIL) which from the factory came with 90W......nothing is recommended for the current gen 124 or Miata on the Amsoil site so I may reach out to Amsoil technical for their thoughts. I was assuming the current gen differential was based on the NC diff since I know some have swapped ND diffs/parts into their NC but you know what they say about assumptions........we do share a variation of the NC transmission.
A quick google search yielded the following as an excerpt from 1998: SAE Viscosity Grades – viscosity table and viscosity chart :: Anton Paar Wiki . SAE-90 is showing as 13.13-18.5.

SAE doesn't just change their viscosity scale like that. I don't care what the OP in that thread does for a living; I'm telling you what the facts are. You can't just take what you read on the internet as gospel without fact checking it based on an appeal to authority. That's like going to an optometrist to get information on lens manufacturing and polycarbonate chemistry. That doctor may know more than most people about glasses but that doesn't make him a chemical engineer. Similarly, he may build differentials for a living, but I've spent the last 6 years studying tribology (lubrication engineering), because my area of expertise in this context is in the formulation, application, performance, and serviceability of lubricants.

Always remember the context of the lubricants recommended for a particular application and what drawbacks there may be that the OEM has to account for. For example, lower quality gear oils will shear in viscosity over time. You may start with an SAE-90 gear oil, but after 10,000 miles, you might have an SAE-85 gear oil due to the breakdown of that lubricant. Furthermore, you have thermal shear stability. All oils thin when heated, but some oils thin less when heated and are more thermally stable at extreme temperatures whereas cheaper lubricants will thin more. The OEM knows this, so they may recommend an SAE-110 gear oil in heavy racing applications or in towing applications for film strength and shock loading purposes where it is expected that the oil will be stressed beyond its normal use. That SAE-110 gear oil may shear down to an SAE-90 gear oil after 10,000 miles of use. The reason why this is important is because moving up to a high end gear oil like the ones I mentioned in my last post will greatly negate this issue. A high end SAE-90 gear oil will stay an SAE-90 gear oil for its entire service life, or more. A high end SAE-90 gear oil will maintain film strength and viscosity better at temperature extremes as well, negating the need for a higher viscosity fluid on that account. Furthermore, a higher end SAE-90 gear oil will include FAR better extreme pressure and film strength additives as well as friction modifiers that prevent thermal runaway you'd experience in lower quality lubricants.

Overwhelmingly, the reason I see non-truck applications running higher viscosity gear oils is to compensate for the deficiencies found in lower quality lubricants. A small number of people will run those on modified applications knowing they are over-stressing that differential.

I already talked to AMSOIL about this. They don't list a product recommendation because Mazda hasn't released the specification for the gear oil, likely so they could sell more of their own overpriced bottles during service.
 

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Based on the Amsoil reply I received, it seems they know the spec but don't have an oil that meets it:

"Subject: RE: Technical Service Contact Form CRM:0234911

We do not list a product because we do not have a product that meets the spec they are looking for.

Thank you,
AMSOIL Technical Services
Tech Line: 715-399-8324
Email: [email protected]"

That said, has anybody tested a virgin sample of the MOPAR/Fiat oil (Blackstone, etc.) to see what it is?

And thanks for your feedback on this thread, I appreciate healthy discussion to hash things out where we can all learn. I'm not sure I would discount a tradesman that looks at diffs daily and can tell performance by looking at wear patterns and catastrophic failures and know what oil they were using to draw some conclusions (where theory and reality meet), but on most of your points I agree, I have used Amsoil for the past 20 years.
 

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Discussion Starter #38 (Edited)
Based on the Amsoil reply I received, it seems they know the spec but don't have an oil that meets it:

"Subject: RE: Technical Service Contact Form CRM:0234911

We do not list a product because we do not have a product that meets the spec they are looking for.

Thank you,
AMSOIL Technical Services
Tech Line: 715-399-8324
Email: [email protected]"

That said, has anybody tested a virgin sample of the MOPAR/Fiat oil (Blackstone, etc.) to see what it is?

And thanks for your feedback on this thread, I appreciate healthy discussion to hash things out where we can all learn. I'm not sure I would discount a tradesman that looks at diffs daily and can tell performance by looking at wear patterns and catastrophic failures and know what oil they were using to draw some conclusions (where theory and reality meet), but on most of your points I agree, I have used Amsoil for the past 20 years.
I spoke to their technical staff on the phone, and was specifically told that FCA doesn't release the spec. Now obviously this is one of those "proceed at your own risk things" since I'll only tell you what I've done and what worked for me and others, not go against AMSOIL's recommendations, but when I spoke to them about running 75W-90 Severe Gear in my 124 Spider, they basically indicated that the friction modifier package was the only thing I'd have to worry about.

If the spec isn't met, it's likely because of a viscosity change. All of AMSOIL's GL-5 gear oils are SAE-90 or higher, and I know some manufacturers are going to an SAE-85 spec gear oil in RWD non-truck applications for fuel efficiency purposes. Whatever the case, AMSOIL's 75W-90 Severe Gear has been working well for me in my 124 Spider. Don't overthink it when it comes to differential oils. Run the appropriate viscosity in a high quality synthetic with the appropriate friction modifier additive package. You'll know when the additive package is incompatible or insufficient if you're getting chatter or other differential vibration while turning that would indicate the clutches (or in this case, cones) are not slipping properly. We've seen no such reports.

Blackstone won't tell you much. Beside the fact that I recommend against them as an oil analysis lab (and can explain that thoroughly), you won't get a decent idea of the additive package used. About the only good it would do is for determining viscosity.

I try not to discount tradesmen with years of experience. I do so cautiously and only when I am 100% certain I have a valid case on technical merits. However, I have met more than a handful of "seasoned tradesmen" that developed erroneous conclusions based on years of confirmation bias and through that, spread a great deal of misinformation. Such is the danger of relying on empirical evidence to draw technical conclusions. For example, I've been selling AMSOIL for 7 years and have sold over $750k of product in that time. Today, I received my first in-person sale return; two gallons of coolant. A seasoned mechanic fear mongered my customer into thinking the coolant would be incompatible with their Honda Odyssey, even after I spoke to him and to my customer directly, explained how OAT coolants are formulated, assured them it would be compatible, reminded them of AMSOIL's warranty, and reminded them that I have been using that same coolant, mixed with the OEM coolant, in my own Odyssey of the same generation. His understanding was based on issues he'd seen when mixing IAT coolant with OAT/HOAT coolant and getting sludge issues, but he didn't understand the technical side of it well enough to know when it's OK to do and as a result, insists on forcing all of his customers to overpay to get OEM coolant.

Similarly, this guy has experienced wear with low-quality SAE-90 gear oils susceptible to thermal runaway and as a result, makes a blanket recommendation to increase viscosity to compensate for it because he doens't understand the root cause of why he saw that wear in the first place.

If you want to get the OEM flud tested for viscosity, I'll meet you in the middle and will provide the oil analysis kit with a prepaid shipping label, if you want to provide the oil itself. Buy a quart of the oil and I'll send you the kit.
 

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Discussion Starter #39
I also learned yesteday that AMSOIL does recommend 75w-90 Severe Gear for the ND Miata, which has the same rear differential except for the gear ratio. So yeah, it is just a matter of FCA not releasing their spec.
 

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Yes, I saw they do now have an ND Miata recommendation so they are getting there.
I'm surprised that the NC Miata recommendations did not roll over to the Fiat- we have the NC transmission and the LSD in my NC was a cone type just like the one in the ND/Abarth.
 
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