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Here I will try to answer many of the questions that are asked in regards to these pages:
Why are you doing this (are you crazy, etc.)?
Who are you and what are your qualifications?
When are you going to look at filter "X"?
Are you going to look at filters for other cars (Honda's, Motorcycles, RVs, etc)?
Why was this page taken off the web for a while?
Why are the pictures so lousy?
Can I see the "original" page?
What is the future of this study?
The primary motivation behind this study was to provide information about what oil filter brands are made by which manufacturers. The secondary motivation was to uncover some of the obvious internal construction issues of these manufacturers. This "study" is not a "test". The SAE J806 and J1858 tests were designed to test the filtration capability of these filters, but unfortunately they have several short comings. These include issues such as anti-drainback valve functionality (valve train noise, etc.), filter element containment capability (how long before it blocks and bypasses--related to surface area), and many testimonials that appear to point in the direction of certain manufacturers. Also, the tests tend to be run by the manufacturers themselves, which are going to be biased as much as possible in their favor. It has been my hope to shed some light in the direction of these issues. While my perhaps unpopular "two eyes and common sense" approach may not be the most scientific, it is the best I could do considering there was little personal return on the investment of time and money I put into it.
Quite frankly, I am just a concerned automotive enthusiast that is tired of being toyed with by these manufacturers. In reality, I am an Electrical Engineer with no qualifications in the area of filtration analysis. However, I have eyes and some common sense, which has proven to be enough to accomplish what I set out to do.
If the filter is not listed at the top of the main page as an upcoming filter, then it probably won't be. New brands will always be coming on the market, but I really want this whole project to come to a conclusion. Obscure filters, such as toilet-paper or wire-mesh filters, cannot be fairly compared to mainstream filters using the means at my disposal. This also includes bypass filters, which are in a league of their own.
Again, if the filter is not listed at the top of the main page as an upcoming filter, then it probably won't be. Filters of the same brand but for different vehicles will not be looked at, nor will OEM filters for other vehicles. Such filters are beyond the scope of this project. If you want to see the results for a different vehicle, then you can always repeat a similar study of you own.
On 8/11/99, I received a rather threatening letter from a corporate lawyer for an automotive parts retailer (not an oil filter manufacturer) threatening legal action if I did not take the page down within 7 day (they cannot make such a demand via unregistered mail and have it mean anything). Surprisingly, this was not in regards to Allied-Signal manufactured oil filters. It was in regards to Champion Laboratories manufactured filters. I requested that the retailer send me the information from the manufacturer that caused them to *demand* that the page be removed from my site. Since the lawyer had no apparent knowledge on the subject, I did not try to reason with her. I do not have the resources to take the battle to court, even though I am well within my rights, so I opted to take it down in that form in good faith. I have since updated the page so that it now only carries the hard data that I acquired, and what I saw while doing it (which is backed up by the pictures). I removed most of my opinionated comments as well as any data that came from the manufacturer (SAE numbers). Thanks to all those that sympathized with my problems.
I received the document from the oil filter retailer on 8/16/99, which was originally from a quality engineer at Champion Laboratories. It was obviously in response to a query the retailer had made to Champion Labs in regards to my web page. The document made some very valid points, which I took to heart. They were concerned because even though they sell several brands of oil filters, they are almost all made by Champion Labs. What really annoys me is that rather than work with me on the issues presented in the letter, they simply chose to demand I take the entire thing down (typical behavior from corporate lawyers in this country). I am always open to input, but I don't respond favorably to blind threats. I will not reveal the name of the company that threatened me unless they decide to do it again. This is for their own sake and not mine.
They were taken with a 35mm camera that is not good at close-ups and scanned-in with a junky scanner. 'Nuff said. I have a better scanner now, but the box containing the filter parts were destroyed in a flood a few years ago. I may rescan the original photos back in at some point, but don't expect the quality to improve much.
Contrary to what you may think, the opinionated and entertaining content that was part of these pages is still here. I have simply moved it to a separate page to avoid any confusion. This page is now called the Opinions and Recommendations page. If you REALLY REALLY want to see the old page, with all of its inaccuracies, rumor has it that a few folks mirrored the page right before it went down. I don't have any links, though.
After I finally get the remaining filters measured and written-up, this study will come to an end. I have no doubt that these filters will change, particularly the clones, however I never intended for this to become a perpetual project. New brands (probably more clones) will undoubtedly come on the market. I challenge anyone out there to continue this effort.
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Copyright © 1996-2003 Russ W. Knize.