SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL


Information and questions on GL1800 Goldwings (2001-Present)
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2008retiredplb
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by 2008retiredplb » Tue Jan 03, 2012 11:45 pm



prandlesc wrote:Using a synthetic oil in your Goldwing is a great decision; using an oil engineered for autos instead of motorcycles is not a great decision. As far as engine lubrication goes, they both will provide superior protection when compared to a mineral oil. The problem is in the clutch. The Goldwing uses a wet clutch, meaning that the clutch sits in oil - the same oil used by the engine. The design allows for better clutch performance and life when riding in the friction zone - slow speeds and a heavy bike make this important. Automotive oils have additives that decrease the friction of the oil, making their use in a wet clutch application a bad idea - not enough friction. Even more so if you buy one of the newer "fuel-saving" oils which have a higher level of friction reducing additives. The difference in cost is really comparatively negligible - about $16 per oil change difference, or about $32/year for most of us (assuming 2 changes per year). You spent $20 or $30 grand on the bike and accessories, and now you're compromising the design of your bike for $30 a year. This is not where I'm going to decide to save a few bucks.
You are absolutely correct about not getting cheap with oil on a bike that costs $20 or $30 grand. If using an premium oil that costs $8 to $10 or even $15 a quart, breaks you, than you should not be riding a GoldWing. Consider the yearly cost, riding 10k to 20k per year and changing oil two or three times, the cost savings is minimal. Cheap oil will cost $4.50 a quart and Amsoil costs me about $8.50 a quart and that amounts to $32 to $48 savings in a year. I wouldn't do it. I spend more than that on Ice cream while riding. Also if I wanted to gamble I would go to the casino, not gamble with my bike. One engine or clutch failure would eat up the savings for many years of riding. Most shops get $70 and above for one hour of their time, thats only two years of oil savings. I would pay twice what I am paying for Amsoil and still think It would be a good deal over using automotive oil.
If you go to most oil companies websites they will give you the oil that is recommended for your bike or other applications. Use the oil that is recommended if it meets at least the minimum specs of your bike. I would not be too sure that diesel oil would meet the GoldWing specs.


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jschiner
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by jschiner » Thu Jan 05, 2012 1:28 pm

I always think back to the fiasco where Mexico was mass producing knock off oil filters that were totally junk and dangerous. They were sold all over. At that time it was mostly FRAM's that were being counterfitted. Being confident that your filter actually is produced by the manufacturer whose name is on it is important. Who makes the Wally World one? Are U Sure? It's an important concern. A store brand could be made by different manufacturers at different times with quality differences. Even big name brands could be made by others who give the Brand Name a better price to produce them at the time. I guess the real question is who makes ALL of their own filters ALL the time and do they have good quality control?

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by Red Ron » Thu Jan 05, 2012 3:37 pm

jschiner wrote:I always think back to the fiasco where Mexico was mass producing knock off oil filters that were totally junk and dangerous. They were sold all over. At that time it was mostly FRAM's that were being counterfitted. Being confident that your filter actually is produced by the manufacturer whose name is on it is important. Who makes the Wally World one? Are U Sure? It's an important concern. A store brand could be made by different manufacturers at different times with quality differences. Even big name brands could be made by others who give the Brand Name a better price to produce them at the time. I guess the real question is who makes ALL of their own filters ALL the time and do they have good quality control?
Supposedly Champion (I think it is) makes Wally World filters. A while back I read info that said some of them were being made in Mexico. Since then I have looked on the filter to see country of orgin. So far all say "made in" or "product of" USA. You have to open the box and actually look on the filter itself.

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by okstay » Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:56 pm

Great discussions on oil and oil filters. I am going to stick to Honda oil filters just for the peace of mind. I bought my goldwing new and I am afraid to use inferior products on it. I am not saying any of these filters are inferior. I just don't trust them. I DO trust the Honda filters. Thanks for all the info. Knowing that there are other filters out there that will work is good to know. You never know when a filter may not be available. Thanks again, Chris 2012 ultra blue

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KenWiggers
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by KenWiggers » Thu Jan 05, 2012 9:24 pm

Anyone looking for cross reference and recommendations on oil filter should check this website:
http://calsci.com/motorcycleinfo/FilterXRef.html I've used the WalMart & Purolator filters for the last several years based filtering capabilities.

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themainviking
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by themainviking » Fri Jan 06, 2012 8:35 am

jschiner wrote:A store brand could be made by different manufacturers at different times with quality differences. Even big name brands could be made by others who give the Brand Name a better price to produce them at the time. I guess the real question is who makes ALL of their own filters ALL the time and do they have good quality control?
You are correct. Any of the filter manufacturers could be making most of the brand names at any given time. The only one I know for sure that makes all of their own filters all the time, and also most of the really quality filters for other brands, is Donaldson. Donaldson don't make no junk as far as I know. There are a limited number of actual filter manufacturers, so most of the brand names are made by someone else. Ford, Chev, Dodge, Honda, Yamaha, Kawi etc, do not make filters. They contract them out to someone to be made to their specifications, but if fram is making them, can you trust the specs are being adhered to?
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL/ filters

Post by collin » Thu Jan 19, 2012 11:13 am


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Ghostman
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by Ghostman » Fri Jan 20, 2012 8:15 am

Interesting read from the Ducati forums.
http://www.ducati.ms/forums/80-hall-wis ... cycle.html

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by themainviking » Fri Jan 20, 2012 9:08 am

It is an interesting read, but not totally accurate... The poster states that there is no evidence that synthetics reduce rebuild and repair costs in motorcycle engines. This is not factual. There are white papers printed which demonstrate wear testing on many types and brands of oils, and the synthetics always demonstrate reduced or even almost eliminated wear of metal to metal parts in all cases. The poster also states that the only way to use oil to prevent engine failure is to change it every 1500 to 2000 miles. Although this is not a totally bad idea, it is very wasteful of your lubrication product. Oil, even dino oil, is formulated to protect your engine three times that long, and it is environmentally irresponsible to dump perfectly good oil in the interest of possibly (not even probably) saving some wear. The poster states that dust from the air enters the oil to leave gritty substance which wears engine parts. If so, then why is there an Air filter, and how does the dust get from the combustion chamber into the oiling system (aside from a minimal amount from blow by). Several other inequities within the article leave me with the thought that this person may be a mechanic or otherwise a genius with motorcycles, but that he may not have researched oil as well as his article would make it appear. An old adage saves him though, and this is: "If it harms no one, do as you wish", and the article and suggestions certainly are not harmful to anything aside from the environment from over use of natural resources and waste of still functional product. In the case of synthetics, most do not use a dino oil base, so the natural resource waste becomes a non issue, but what happens to the disposed of oil, if we all followed these suggestions.
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wcmurphy
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by wcmurphy » Sun Jun 03, 2012 5:35 pm

OK, sounds like Rotella T6 is a safe alternative. I'm thinking about switching to a synthetic as I put over 750 miles on my GL1800 just this weekend.... to bad I have to work for a living... :D So if you use synthetics, what would the recommended change interval be?

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by fmcastro » Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:10 pm

I believe that 8000 miles is an adequate interval when using full synthetic. In my cars I go 9-10 K. I've read that your engine is better protected than it would be at 3 K using dyno oil. I avoid any idling cold, I don't warm up. I believe in start & go to minimize condensation. I just inspected my condensate tube on my GL 1800 for the first time in 10+ years and 28000 miles. There was no water inside (not even a drop). My old oil is only slightly discolored compared to the new oil. I believe the oil companies would love to perpetuate the 3K oil change (even with synthetic) to ensure profits. I know of traveling salesmen who change their car's oil at 25K and dispose of them at 250K with no perceived engine wear.

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by MikeB » Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:27 pm

8000 miles is what is published in the Honda Service manual as normal Oil and Filter change interval.

The recommended engine oil is:
Pro Honda GN4 or HP4 (without molybdenum additives) 4-stroke oil or equivalent motor oil API service classification SG or Higher JASO T 903 standard: MA
Viscosity: SAE 10W-40

So, just about any Synthetic oil you use is certainly good to 8,000 miles.
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by 2008retiredplb » Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:36 pm

I want to update some information on my experience with synthetic oil, mainly AmsOil.
Do not think that I am even considering switching from synthetic oil to dyno oil. I do believe that synthetic oil designed for any type of engine is the best way to go today. After saying that I have another post string on problems I had with a starter failure on my 2009 GL1800. Honda told me the 2009's should be using 10W30 oil not 10W40 (AmsOil 10W40 is what I was using) as was called for on earlier models. The AmsOil was the full synthetic motorcycle oil recommended by AmsOil for the Honda GL1800. I still did not believe that could make a difference in the starter failing to turn the engine over. It would (only on the first attempt) turn the starter motor but not engage the engine to turn it over. On the second attempt it would start like normal. After taking it to my dealer I was told to change the oil to 10W30 and see if it continued to give the same problem. I changed the oil to Honda GN4 10W30 non-synthetic oil and the problem has stopped. I will be changing the oil soon and I am going back to AmsOIl but in the 10W30 to see if the problem comes back.
I could not get a definitive answer from AmsOil of why this was happening to my bike. They told me the viscosity of the oil should not make a difference when the engine is cold, but it makes a difference when the engine is hot, or something like that. The more miles I put on the bike, with the 10W40 AmsOil, the more frequent the problem became, no matter what the air temperature was. I kind of believe this could be an oil lubrication problem, making things so slick the starter clutch would not catch.
I have seen engine failures because the oil was not changed frequently enough. Some people thing if they drive their motorcycle only a few miles each year, more specifically short trips most of the time, they do not need to change the oil as often. That is completely wrong, the more short trips the bike makes puts the class of service in a severe operating condition or service. The engine needs to be run long enough to boil the water and other contaminates out of the crankcase. That should be something like 30 to 60 minutes each time you start it.
As far as the comments on filters, I have found if you have a failure (under warranty) involving oil, and are running any other brand of filter than Honda, you may have your warranty claim denied. This may also be true with using oil other than Honda's.
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by Red Ron » Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:44 am

2008retiredplb wrote:I want to update some information on my experience with synthetic oil, mainly AmsOil.
Do not think that I am even considering switching from synthetic oil to dyno oil. I do believe that synthetic oil designed for any type of engine is the best way to go today. After saying that I have another post string on problems I had with a starter failure on my 2009 GL1800. Honda told me the 2009's should be using 10W30 oil not 10W40 (AmsOil 10W40 is what I was using) as was called for on earlier models. The AmsOil was the full synthetic motorcycle oil recommended by AmsOil for the Honda GL1800. I still did not believe that could make a difference in the starter failing to turn the engine over. It would (only on the first attempt) turn the starter motor but not engage the engine to turn it over. On the second attempt it would start like normal. After taking it to my dealer I was told to change the oil to 10W30 and see if it continued to give the same problem. I changed the oil to Honda GN4 10W30 non-synthetic oil and the problem has stopped. I will be changing the oil soon and I am going back to AmsOIl but in the 10W30 to see if the problem comes back.
I could not get a definitive answer from AmsOil of why this was happening to my bike. They told me the viscosity of the oil should not make a difference when the engine is cold, but it makes a difference when the engine is hot, or something like that. The more miles I put on the bike, with the 10W40 AmsOil, the more frequent the problem became, no matter what the air temperature was. I kind of believe this could be an oil lubrication problem, making things so slick the starter clutch would not catch.
I have seen engine failures because the oil was not changed frequently enough. Some people thing if they drive their motorcycle only a few miles each year, more specifically short trips most of the time, they do not need to change the oil as often. That is completely wrong, the more short trips the bike makes puts the class of service in a severe operating condition or service. The engine needs to be run long enough to boil the water and other contaminates out of the crankcase. That should be something like 30 to 60 minutes each time you start it.
As far as the comments on filters, I have found if you have a failure (under warranty) involving oil, and are running any other brand of filter than Honda, you may have your warranty claim denied. This may also be true with using oil other than Honda's.
That is a very interesting case concerning your starter. I believe I have read something to that effect somewhere else. If you get more specific info please keep us informed. As far as the Honda oil and filter; I think it is against the law for a manufacturer to require their brand to be used. A couple of years back I remember read an old court case that set the precedent. All of the auto manufacturer's would have a monopoly and make a fortune by jacking up the price of thier products. As long as it meets specs required by warranty you are ok. A dealer should be ashamed to say anything different. Or, I suppose, they could actually (mistakingly) believe it.

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by jschiner » Mon Jun 04, 2012 11:07 am

When I buy my AMSOIL and Honda filter I buy them from my local Honda Dealer. And yes, 10 - 40 is not recommended in the newer wings. Sure, I may pay a little more but it's worth my piece of mind knowing that no one can even think of denying a warranty claim on me due to an oil or a filter issue. I buy the grade recommended and use the OEM filter. Just not worth the worry one way or the other to save a buck. I drive about 6k a year and change once a year (or sooner after a really hot, really long trip). Never had a problem and my bike runs sweet as pie.

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by MikeB » Mon Jun 04, 2012 11:24 am

You say that 10W-40 oil is not recommended for the newer wings. Which wings are the newer wings? 2012 and newer or 2001 and newer?
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by jschiner » Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:46 pm

Per the 2012 Factory Service Manual, These are the recommendations;
ProHondaGN4 oil or equiv.
API of SG or Higher
JASO T 903 MA
VISCOSITY: SAE 10-30

The parts guy at my Dealership who's about 60 and been in the business since a kid told me that Honda now recommends the SAE 10-30. My impression was that it was was a change in Honda's thinking. I take his word to the bank and he has never steered me wrong. The dealership has been around for decades and does all the work on the police bikes, etc. I doubled checked my Factory Service Manual and right there on page 3-13 it was. I was going to put 10-40 in her until he advised me to use 10-30.

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by themainviking » Mon Jun 04, 2012 7:15 pm

MikeB wrote:You say that 10W-40 oil is not recommended for the newer wings. Which wings are the newer wings? 2012 and newer or 2001 and newer?
2009 and newer are Honda recommended for 10W30 oil. Prior to this, Honda also recommended 10W40, I think. They may have found out something that we are only just discovering, and that is that the sprague clutch on the GL1800 starters, from brand new, do not like 10W40 oil. The problems 2008retiredplb experienced at all temperatures, I only experienced when it was below 50 F. I also contacted AMSOIL about it, and they explained that 10W40 is thicker throughout its viscosity range than 10W30 is. The 10 portion of the equation is way below zero temps so it is basically 30% thicker at any temps higher than zero. Knowing what I do now, if I had any GL1800, I do not believe I would be running 10W40 oil in it. I think Honda, although denying that they have ever heard of this sprague clutch problem, limited their recommendations for GL1800s in the 2009 model year, which to me means they probably found out about it as early as 2006. As the bikes can be perfectly comfortable throughout temperature ranges that we actually ride them in, with 10W30 oil, then we should probably be running this in them. If I lived in climates consistently above 80F, I would probably continue the use of 10W40. My owners manual says:

API Service Classification SG or higher except oils labeled
as energy conserving on the circular API service label,
SAE 10W-30, JASO T 903 standard MA,
Pro Honda GN4 4-stroke oil or equivalent

With my knowledge of AMSOIL and lubricant qualities, I had thought a 10W40 would only be "better" rather than just different, so I used it. I am back on 10W30 (still Amsoil 100% synthetic motorcycle oil) which meets the exact specifications shown in my owners manual. It should be noted that the bar graph on page 165 of my owners manual, showing engine oil recommendations by external ambient temperature gradients DOES show 10W40 from 50 F to 110 F, so Honda cannot deny any warranty claim due to improper lubrication quality. I have not seen owners manuals prior to 2009, and so cannot comment on what they might show for recommendations.

Further to above, I just found a 2001-2005 Service manual which recommends 10W40, and an owners manual from 2001 for the 2002 model year which had this graph displayed, so recommendations go all the way up to 20W50 apparently

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by 2008retiredplb » Mon Jun 04, 2012 11:17 pm

jschiner wrote:When I buy my AMSOIL and Honda filter I buy them from my local Honda Dealer. And yes, 10 - 40 is not recommended in the newer wings. Sure, I may pay a little more but it's worth my piece of mind knowing that no one can even think of denying a warranty claim on me due to an oil or a filter issue. I buy the grade recommended and use the OEM filter. Just not worth the worry one way or the other to save a buck. I drive about 6k a year and change once a year (or sooner after a really hot, really long trip). Never had a problem and my bike runs sweet as pie.
When I checked the price at the dealer for the Honda oils, the GN4 was just a little less than the AmsOil and the Honda Synthetic oil was almost 1 1/2 times more expensive. If I remember correctly, GN4 was $25 + tax and the Synthetic was around $43 + tax per gallon. I have been paying around $32 per gallon (shipped to my door) for the AmsOil. So using the AmsOil is only a small price over that of the Honda dino oil and less that Honda synthetic.
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by Mike 545 » Tue Jun 05, 2012 8:47 am

I'm confused. Okay, I just got the 2012. What should I use for my first oil change. I intend to change it at 1K. After that, I will wait until 3K.

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by MikeB » Tue Jun 05, 2012 8:58 am

What does it say in your owners manual? You can not go wrong by following the owners manual.
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by jschiner » Tue Jun 05, 2012 9:18 am

themainviking wrote:
MikeB wrote:You say that 10W-40 oil is not recommended for the newer wings. Which wings are the newer wings? 2012 and newer or 2001 and newer?
2009 and newer are Honda recommended for 10W30 oil. Prior to this, Honda also recommended 10W40, I think. They may have found out something that we are only just discovering, and that is that the sprague clutch on the GL1800 starters, from brand new, do not like 10W40 oil. The problems 2008retiredplb experienced at all temperatures, I only experienced when it was below 50 F. I also contacted AMSOIL about it, and they explained that 10W40 is thicker throughout its viscosity range than 10W30 is. The 10 portion of the equation is way below zero temps so it is basically 30% thicker at any temps higher than zero. Knowing what I do now, if I had any GL1800, I do not believe I would be running 10W40 oil in it. I think Honda, although denying that they have ever heard of this sprague clutch problem, limited their recommendations for GL1800s in the 2009 model year, which to me means they probably found out about it as early as 2006. As the bikes can be perfectly comfortable throughout temperature ranges that we actually ride them in, with 10W30 oil, then we should probably be running this in them. If I lived in climates consistently above 80F, I would probably continue the use of 10W40. My owners manual says:

API Service Classification SG or higher except oils labeled
as energy conserving on the circular API service label,
SAE 10W-30, JASO T 903 standard MA,
Pro Honda GN4 4-stroke oil or equivalent

With my knowledge of AMSOIL and lubricant qualities, I had thought a 10W40 would only be "better" rather than just different, so I used it. I am back on 10W30 (still Amsoil 100% synthetic motorcycle oil) which meets the exact specifications shown in my owners manual. It should be noted that the bar graph on page 165 of my owners manual, showing engine oil recommendations by external ambient temperature gradients DOES show 10W40 from 50 F to 110 F, so Honda cannot deny any warranty claim due to improper lubrication quality. I have not seen owners manuals prior to 2009, and so cannot comment on what they might show for recommendations.

Further to above, I just found a 2001-2005 Service manual which recommends 10W40, and an owners manual from 2001 for the 2002 model year which had this graph displayed, so recommendations go all the way up to 20W50 apparently

According to the 2001-2005 graph, Honda was stating at that time that if you ride in weather that is a tad over 90 degrees that 10w-30 is not recommended and a higher viscosity oil should be used. Some jump in thinking on their part going from not recommending 10w-30 to recommending it. I would think that if a mechanical "weak link" was the reason for this dramatic change that it should have been fixed instead of dumbing down the viscosity. The graph is pretty much a typical, standard engine viscosity graph that shows to use higher viscosity for higher temperatures. It's widely accepted stuff for engines to use a higher viscosity for higher temps.

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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by detdrbuzzard » Tue Jun 05, 2012 8:43 pm

your amsoil may say that it can go up to 15,000 miles between changes but honda says chang oil on an 1100, 1200, and 1500 wing every 8000 miles. if you have a new wing and are not following hondas guide lines and have an engine failure by doing 10,000 mile oil changes honda will not replace your engine and amsoil says to follow the manufactures recomendations
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by 2008retiredplb » Wed Jun 06, 2012 8:13 am

All newer Goldwings from 2009 to present spec 10W-30 oil. What brand is up to you as long as it meets or excedes the Honda spec's.
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Re: SYNTHETIC ENGINE OIL

Post by MikeB » Wed Jun 06, 2012 8:46 am

That's the answer I was looking for. Thanks.


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