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New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

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New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

Old 09-03-2018, 12:58 PM
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Car: 1984 Z28 H.O.
Engine: 305 Cubic Inch
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New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

Hello everyone,

I was not sure where to post this, but seeing as my car is a carburetor car, I figured this might be a good place to start with my questions. Just recently, I purchased a 1984 Z28 High Output car. I've been reading up on as many threads and how-tos on this site to educate myself on my new purchase. The car I now own was a 1 owner car, I am now the second owner. I've driven it around for a few days and have now garaged it until I familiarize myself on maintenance matters for a car from this time period before I do anything. It has the 305 cubic inch engine with the 5-speed manual transmission. The car has 62k original miles on it. The gentleman I purchased it from said he always ran 10w30 conventional oil in the engine. Forgive my ignorance of such things, but do I need a special type of 10w30 oil to run in this engine? The reason I ask, is I read an article on maintaining older muscle cars, and it stated that anything prior to 1990 might have a flat tappet camshaft as opposed to a roller type, which requires a Zinc additive in the engine oil to prevent damaging the components. I saw where Amsoil and a couple of other brands have Zinc additive blend oils for older cars.

I understand that this may be common knowledge to everyone here, and possibly a redundant newbie question, so I apologize in advance if I am rehashing a common topic, I just didn't see anything about this subject on my searches through the forums over the past week. The oldest vehicle that I have ever owned, and still own is a 1991 K1500 Chevy pickup, which doesn't require the additive, so I just run synthetic oil in its Throttle Body Injected 350 engine. This is my first older car with a carburetor engine, and I just want to get my information straight so I can continue to keep this nice, all original Z28 running for many years to come.

I would appreciate any specific information about this 305 engine and advice that I might need to know to keep it running well. My plans right now are to gain information, then do some basic tune-up things like replace the spark plugs, wires, oil/filter, fuel filter, air filter, and probably the brake pads and shocks just to make sure everything is up to date as I don't know when the last time these things were done to the car. 60ish thousand miles seems like a good time to do all of these things regardless, then I can begin a new logbook for the car and begin my own maintenance intervals on it.

Thank you in advance for any information you can provide.
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Old 09-03-2018, 01:58 PM
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Re: New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

It does indeed have a flat-tappet cam. No special oil is required however; just yerbasic normal 10W-30 is fine. You'll get no telling how many horror stories, repetition of myths, Fri night McDonalds parking lot monkey-spank, and no telling what all else, asking "what kind of oil"; ignore it. Just yerbasic normal 10W-30 is perfectly fine. Synthetic or dinosaur squeezins, both are OK, doesn't matter. Don't get all wound up in all the crap.

I would recommend changing ALL the fluids. Oil, transmission (75W-90 gear lube such as Mobil 1), rear end (same), brake fluid COMPLETE flush.
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Old 09-03-2018, 02:18 PM
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Car: 1984 Z28 H.O.
Engine: 305 Cubic Inch
Transmission: 5-Speed Manual
Re: New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

Thanks for the info, I just wanted to be sure (figured better safe than sorry). Yes, I'll do the transmission and rear differential too with everything else. That way, I have a date in my logbook when everything was done to reference going forward. I own four vehicles, so I keep logbooks in each of them so I can remember when I did what on each one. There are always snake oil salesmen with anything, but it was worth asking about to make sure. I just run Mobile 1 oil in all my other vehicles and stock up when it is on sale. I'll hit the store soon to grab all the fluids I need and make a weekend project out of it.
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Old 09-03-2018, 06:52 PM
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Re: New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

Mobil 1 oil is perfectly OK, if that's what you like.

For that matter, your 91 truck has a flat-tappet cam in it too; as you can no doubt tell, the synthetic oil works just fine in it. All the Internet raving lunatic horror stories notwithstanding.
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Old 09-03-2018, 07:05 PM
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Re: New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

Welcome to TGO! I almost bought an '84 L69/s speed, I have a soft spot for those... if only to have a bigger garage.
Post up some pics of your new ride.
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Old 09-03-2018, 09:24 PM
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Re: New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)



If you wanted to use the ZDDP additive, without breaking the bank, here it is.
I sleep better at night knowing it's in there.

And be sure to use the correct camshaft break-in paste when you change yours.

Last edited by NoEmissions84TA; 09-03-2018 at 09:29 PM.
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Old 10-14-2018, 09:36 PM
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Car: 1984 Z28 H.O.
Engine: 305 Cubic Inch
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Re: New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

Still haven't done anything to the car yet, had maintenance on my wife's car, and one of my pickups ahead of the Z28 in the queue to be worked on. I did make a run to Jegs to get all the fluids and stuff for the Z28 though. I purchased a Penn's Synthetic/Coventional Blend 10w30 that had the zinc additive already mixed into it just for good measure that the clerk recommended. He said he had an older El Camino that he ran the stuff in and said it would be a good oil for the Z28 as well. I also purchased transmission fluid and rear differential oil for the car, plus new spark plugs and wires. I should be all set, just need to find some time to do it all before winter sets in.
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Old 10-27-2018, 09:45 AM
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Re: New owner questions (1984 Z28 H.O.)

only need 4OZ in the engine oil .. works great in my 1978 boat engine flat tappets..

Last edited by jcat; 10-27-2018 at 09:51 AM.
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