Holder B12: SAE 20 and modern oil equivalents


New User
As a newbie tractor owner, I'm really starting from scratch. I checked out the (German) manual for the Holder B 12, and it mentions using SAE 20 oil. This type can be a bit tricky to find, but not impossible. For example, there's "Östol Oldtimer Oil SAE 20," so it's not that hard to get. The question is, do I play safe buying the mentioned oil, or is there more to it?

But I'm equally wondering, is this over the top? Can I use a more modern alternative instead? Is there any risk in doing that, or does it not really matter? I won’t be using the tractor heavily, and I definitely don’t want to damage it.

I don't want to spark a big debate about the many different opinions out there. I'm just looking for a safe and practical solution for changing and topping up the oil in the tractor.
Probably when that manual was printed multiviscosity oil didn't exist. I remember that there was a Texaco station at the end of our street and mother would use Havoline 20w in the winter here in Tx. and Havoline 30w in the summer, both non-detergent. Oil changes were 1800 miles back then, and if you had to do any engine work it took a day or two to scrape off all the caked oil on the parts to get to them (been there done that)....since non-detergent didn't put contaminants into suspension and could be drained out with the used oil, like today's oils. Most of my tractors over the 45+ years I have been using them are/were old and used and on what oil to use I threw the book in the trash.

Gas tractors got 10w-30 HD and diesels 15w-40 HD. Never in my life have I ever lost an engine in any kind of equipment and I have had a lot of various types!!!!!!!!!!!
Any of the newer oils available today are better than what was then. I use 15-40 in everything saves monkeying around with a bunch of different oils for each thing. Car pickup and equipment. Only time I had a problem was in winter and the wife's escort would push the filter away enough to leak oil with 15-40 in it so had to get a lighter oil for it.

We sell tractor parts! We have the parts you need to repair your tractor - the right parts. Our low prices and years of research make us your best choice when you need parts. Shop Online Today.