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Homework Help: What chemicals are in generic 2 cycle motor oil?

  1. Oct 20, 2006 #1
    Does anyone have a list of the specific chemicals that are in off the shelf generic 2 cycle oils? Much appriciation if someone can give me an accurate list. Willing to compensate for an accurate list of chemicals and their chemical formulas.
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 20, 2006 #2


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    Firstly, the only place you'll get accurate information is the API or the refinery themselves. Both unlikely to give out complete compositions.

    Typically, 90% of the make-up is base oil. This is generally mineral oil; hydrocarbon fractions of crude, for bog-standard off-the-shelf variants. Some oils will use vegetable oils or synthetic compounds (esters, polyolefins, fluorocarbons) for the base oil.

    The remaining 10% is made up of additives. This is mostly where oil differs in composition depending on the designated application. Additives will include anti-oxidants, viscosity improvers, anti-wear compounds, corrosion inhibitors, anti-foaming agents, detergents, ZDDP, and emulsifiers. Ash will be added for sooty burning engines. Diesel and 2-stroke oils have a high ash content to 'mop up' the soot.

    Now, when you ask about 2 stroke oils, do you mean the sort used in little whizz-bang engines (garden strimmers, lawnmowers etc) or large power generation/marine units?
  4. Oct 20, 2006 #3

    Thanks brewnog you've actually been very helpful and pointed me in the right direction.
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