16 June 2011

The foundation of the alternative refrigeration oil

We pointed out in our latest expert advice that Shell is going to discontinue the production of the Clavus 68 and G 68. Shell sold the production lines to the German company Fuchs, which means that the Shell 68 and G 68 will no longer be available for distribution. Shell now recommends the Clavus S (2V) and Clavus AB (4V) oils as alternatives.

One of our customers, a heavy user of Clavus 68 and Clavus G 68 oils requested that we compare the recommended Shell alternatives with the Clavus 68. The test was performed in the United States.

To obtain an additional reference point besides the Clavus range, another oil has been tested using the same procedure.


To view the results, please see Table 1.


Table 1: Related scores (see also Table 2 for detailed information)

1: Very Bad
2: Bad
3: Neutral
4: Good
5: Very Good

As you can see in table one the test results are surprising.

The recommended alternative for the Clavus 68 and G 68 is the Clavus 2V (Clavus S); these alternatives are comparable with the well known Shell Clavus 68. As you can see in table one, Clavus 2V (Clavus S) has the most similar properties to the Shell Clavus 68.

  • The viscosity within a temperature range (viscosity index) was more stable; a more useable viscosity was shown at 30 °C (this is important for compressor installations in order to receive the oil back to the compressor system).

  • The pour point of Clavus S performed better at -31°C than the Clavus 68, which can only handle -22°C.

  • The flash point value is slightly better than that of Clavus 68.

The results of the reference oil were interesting:

The reference oil performed better with most properties, compared to the recommended Shell Clavus S. Based on these results, the manufacturer of this oil has been contacted. The reference oil is now available in Europe at Next Lubricants. Our customer who requested the oil analyses is now using the NXT -717 in his installations.


Hence to the contact and the test results we support companies who would like to make a switch in the lubrications.


The price of the reference oil is close to the well-known Clavus 68 and G 68.


The formulation of the NXT – 717 is unique and surprisingly, it makes it possible to use NXT - 717 without flushing.


We hope that we have provided sufficient information to change your opinion of the well-known oil Clavus 68 (G 68).


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