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Sahara Travel Forum Topics specific to North Africa and the Sahara down to the 17th parallel (excludes Morocco)
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Desert Travels - Motorcycle Journeys in the Sahara and West Africa!

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Old 2 Mar 2008
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Oil for Oil Changes

I'm travelling for two months in Morroco, Mauri, Mali and Niger.... A quick question is the right oil for oil changes going to be a b*stard to get hold of and should I take some with me or is it something I'll find in most big cities with out have to look to hard?
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Old 2 Mar 2008
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Oil and other consumables...

Generally you can get oil anywhere that there are vehicles... But, if you have enough space (I'm assuming you are in a car) I'd say it's worth taking a change worth of all the oils you need - as well as filters. After all, it's not much extra weight really and it means you have an emergency supply if you manage to puncture a diff casing or your sump bolt vibrates out (I've had that happen on a trail bike once!)

I'd also really recommend putting Slik 50 into everything which takes it - engine, gearbox/transfer box & diffs. When I lost my sump bolt on the bike the engine survived running dry because of the Slik 50 - you can feel to slippery coating on parts if you strip a treated motor - and ever since I put it into everything I own. At worst you know that the engine is still getting some protection even if the oil you had to purchase was poor quality.

On another note - try to take consumable parts as well since in West Africa you want to be VERY careful of Nigerian fakes - especially Toyota parts... I've had filters which were the correct casing but just bits of paper stuffed inside, and water pumps etc made of some crappy soft alloy - you get to spot the slightly off-colour printing on the packaging after a while. Always take the original part to compare in the shop... (and stay with the vehicle if it is having work done, or your original parts might be swapped out for Nigerian bits...!)

Sorry if that sounds a bit dramatic - there are lots of very good mechanics in West Africa, but if you are just passing through you are unlikely to have a chance to find the good ones, so it's best to be prepared for the worst!

Tony
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