MK2 oil pressure

I recently purchased a ‘62 MK2, 3.8. It came out of a 28 yr storage. After changing the fuel and a tune up it runs and sounds fine. However the oil pressure is 0-5 lbs at idle and 20 underway. Should I be concerned? (Exhaust is clean and engine sounds perfect) Thanks, Jay Sparrow, Maine, USA

What weight Oil? Go with 20-50 this time of year.
Are you using old cartridge style filter or a spin on adapter filter?
Gauge could easily be way off; find a manual gauge to screw into the block.
Should be closer to 15-20 HOT at idle and 40 cruising along.
There is a voltage reducer behind the gauges that can give you really bad readings.
At idle does it sound smooth? When I start mine I do not rev it for 30 seconds and you can definitely hear a difference once it comes up to pressure and the cams and valves are getting pressure.

Loveland, Colorado USA


I understand the only reference measure is 30psi at 3000 rpm when hot, and if worried, best tested using a known reliable gauge.

Much can be confused between sender and gauge.

Little or no gauge pressure at idle is fine.

Does a '62 MK2 have the old style mechanical gauge or an electrical sender ?

In any case, I would wish to verify those readings with another gauge

if correct, your readings are at the lowest end of acceptable, with 30psi at 3000RM specified

if your engine does not emit oil-colored smoke, consume oil, or discolor the plugs, they would be very favorable signs.

My '63 has an electrical gauge - I took it out of circuit the way Gerard describes. Per the new Sparco mechanical gauge mine runs 20psi at hot idle and up just over 50psi at 3000rpm (70mph). The other known failure point is the pressure relief spring found in the filter head - can weaken or in the case of my boyhood Triumph Dolomite Sprint - break. Paul

Nice car by the way. Like the white walls. Paul

I appreciate all the feedback. I have forwarded all of it to my mechanic. The car is at his garage for the next couple of days to have some work done.

Same kind of thing applies to overheating. If the gauge is wonky showing high temperatures; yet you are not boiling over then the sender or the gauge are at fault. Doesn’t hurt to have that old radiator boiled out by an expert, should run about $75 USD. Buy one of those inexpensive non contact IR laser temperature guns, it will be your friend on many occasions!