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Does Mobil 1 Contain the Additive for Flat Tappet Cams?
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Does Mobil 1 Contain the Additive for Flat Tappet Cams?
I build a few engines a year as I do muscle car repairs and I have been having a lot of camshaft failures.  I just read that it is because the oil no longer has the additive for flat tappet cams. Can I use Mobil 1 to break in fresh rebuilt engines of '60s and '70s tech? Is it too slippery for new ring break-in? Will it give protection on new cam and lifters?
-- Frederick Neidlinger, Dover/Dover AFB, DE
For older, flat tappet engines where wear may be more of a concern, we offer a number of synthetic oils which are higher in phosphorus than API SN/ILSAC GF-5 oils.  These include Mobil 1 15W-50 (1,200 ppm), Mobil 1 0W-40 (1,000 ppm) and Mobil 1 High Mileage 5W-30, 10W-30 and 10W-40 (900 ppm). For all newer engines and flat tappet engines in normal service, API SN/ISLAC GF-5 oils are preferred for better fuel economy and for the protection of catalytic systems with lower phosphorous (800 ppm).
Answer updated April 2012
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