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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
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a little perplexed?

I have switched to non ethanol fuel the last two fill ups. I was anxious to see the improvement in the MPG's. I recently had to make a road trip so I took the bike. I faced gusty winds and tried to maintain my usual 10 over posted. My fuel mileage was about 43 mpg, which is less than what I had been averaging the last few fill ups before the switch to non ethanol. I am thinking this was due to the high gusty winds and trying to maintain 70 plus mph. The cost difference of the non ethanol fuel compared to regular fuel is significant and I am not sure it is going to be worth cost increase. Right now it will be an additional .41 per gallon. What do you think?
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 10:22 AM
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You would need to do a run back to back using the different fuels. I know when I have been trying to maintain freeway speed into the wind I get much worse mpg.
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 10:28 AM
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You should get about 5% better MPG without the ethanol so an additional $.41 isn't worth it in your case.
I've also found this bike doesn't get good MPG at 70mph+ especially on windy days and with luggage.


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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 10:35 AM
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Since the beginning I have been getting way lower mileage than others on the forum (I average 46/39 mpg imperial/US gallon. For an experiment I tried a tank of non-ethanol also but it made no difference at all so I am still wondering why I am getting such low mileage. Not that it really matters much but more curious than anything.

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 10:52 AM
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I can average 60 mpg if i stay under 45 mph, but can count on around 43 mpg to 46 mpg with normal driveing in Texas.
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 03:23 PM
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With E10 gas, the difference in MPG is minimal. Ethanol has something like 30% less energy per unit of volume as gasoline does, but when its only 10% of the final mix going into your tank.. that works out to about 3% difference. You'd have to run an entire tank of each in exactly identical conditions to notice much of a change. At $.41 extra a gallon, which works out to a hair under 10% of what we pay around here, it means you're paying 10% more to get at best a 3% increase in mpg. If gas was $3/gal you'd just break even, and the only real advantage is you could go 3% further on a tank before you'd be calling AAA.
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-09-2012, 10:06 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by DR_ View Post
You should get about 5% better MPG without the ethanol so an additional $.41 isn't worth it in your case.
I've also found this bike doesn't get good MPG at 70mph+ especially on windy days and with luggage.
I agree, but I was surprised it got worse than when I occasionally took the express way to work. I figured the windy/gusting winds played more of a role this time. I only had a gym bag on the back like I usually do so I didn't think it was much more of a factor.

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Originally Posted by V-COASTER View Post
Since the beginning I have been getting way lower mileage than others on the forum (I average 46/39 mpg imperial/US gallon. For an experiment I tried a tank of non-ethanol also but it made no difference at all so I am still wondering why I am getting such low mileage. Not that it really matters much but more curious than anything.
I was told it takes a few tanks to make a real noticable difference since you have to get the ethanol out of the system.

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Originally Posted by jettexas View Post
I can average 60 mpg if i stay under 45 mph, but can count on around 43 mpg to 46 mpg with normal driveing in Texas.
cheers
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Maybe that is why I can't get to 50 mpg. I usually average 44/45 MPG. I have dipped as low as 38 mpg, and peaked at 48 mpg.

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Originally Posted by TwoTacoCombo View Post
With E10 gas, the difference in MPG is minimal. Ethanol has something like 30% less energy per unit of volume as gasoline does, but when its only 10% of the final mix going into your tank.. that works out to about 3% difference. You'd have to run an entire tank of each in exactly identical conditions to notice much of a change. At $.41 extra a gallon, which works out to a hair under 10% of what we pay around here, it means you're paying 10% more to get at best a 3% increase in mpg. If gas was $3/gal you'd just break even, and the only real advantage is you could go 3% further on a tank before you'd be calling AAA.
Thanks for the numbers. I was beginning to think that as far as increasing mpg's and thus saving money it was not going to happen and it appears this will be the case. So now I am debating about whether it is worth continuing to put the non-ethanol gas in for the sake of longevity on the V's magical parts that make it so fun to ride.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-09-2012, 10:13 AM
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that whole wind gusts and luggage is so true. With my case setup I actually lose about 3mpg on average. Add wind and it bumps up to a 5mpg loss.

Not to concerned as my conservative estimate on a tank is 40mpg even without cases. So on a full tank I fill up at 180-210 MPG religiously but that is based on where I am at and if I know where the next gas station is and what the traffic in front of me is doing.

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-09-2012, 11:38 AM
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High winds and temps in the 30's or 40's tends to really cut into my V's gas mileage.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-09-2012, 10:47 PM
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Warm day (76F), gusty winds, and I went 161 miles on HALF a tank (mine'll hold 5.3 gallons filled into the neck), 2.64 gallons, going to the GoodGuys Spring Nationals here in Scottsdale. My calculator calls that a 'hair' less than 61 mpg.

A bit of 70+, but mostly around 65 mph.

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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 08:13 AM Thread Starter
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Warm day (76F), gusty winds, and I went 161 miles on HALF a tank (mine'll hold 5.3 gallons filled into the neck), 2.64 gallons, going to the GoodGuys Spring Nationals here in Scottsdale. My calculator calls that a 'hair' less than 61 mpg.

A bit of 70+, but mostly around 65 mph.
I was hoping to improve to above 50 mpg, 60+ would be outstanding! . My average is only 44/45 mpg and my rpm's are usually under 6 grand as my ride to work every day is mostly 45mph to 55mph posted so i do 50 to 60 mph. Its just weird how their is such a wide range of MPG's from bike to bike.
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 12:54 PM
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What tire pressures do you run? I'm at 36F and 42R, which I also ran in my KLR with Kenda "knobbies". Got great mileage on that one too. And I'm in 6th gear MOST of the time.

Bike's been on Mobil1 synthetic since 4,500 miles (my '09 went synthetic at 1,000 miles).

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Last edited by fasteddiecopeman; 03-10-2012 at 12:58 PM.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 04:48 PM Thread Starter
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What tire pressures do you run? I'm at 36F and 42R, which I also ran in my KLR with Kenda "knobbies". Got great mileage on that one too. And I'm in 6th gear MOST of the time.

Bike's been on Mobil1 synthetic since 4,500 miles (my '09 went synthetic at 1,000 miles).
I've been running 37R 33F on the original stock tires and I am about to hit 6000 on the odometer. I was just talking to a buddy the other day and I will probably be switching to full synthetic oil the next oil change. So far I have changed the oil twice.
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
What tire pressures do you run? I'm at 36F and 42R, which I also ran in my KLR with Kenda "knobbies". Got great mileage on that one too. And I'm in 6th gear MOST of the time.

Bike's been on Mobil1 synthetic since 4,500 miles (my '09 went synthetic at 1,000 miles).
The manufacturer recommended tire pressures are

32psi (front)
36psi (rear)

More pressure may mean slightly less rolling resistance but you'll get improved tire grip and and a better quality ride with the lower recommended pressures. Most race and off road bikes run at lower than stock pressures.

Last edited by Sprocket; 03-10-2012 at 06:29 PM.
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-11-2012, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Sprocket View Post
The manufacturer recommended tire pressures are

32psi (front)
36psi (rear)

More pressure may mean slightly less rolling resistance but you'll get improved tire grip and and a better quality ride with the lower recommended pressures. Most race and off road bikes run at lower than stock pressures.
FWIW, I've 'dragged' the left footpeg feeler several times at the 36F and 42R pressures.

Ed
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post #16 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-11-2012, 09:12 PM
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Originally Posted by jagrugger View Post
I have switched to non ethanol fuel the last two fill ups. I was anxious to see the improvement in the MPG's. I recently had to make a road trip so I took the bike. I faced gusty winds and tried to maintain my usual 10 over posted. My fuel mileage was about 43 mpg, which is less than what I had been averaging the last few fill ups before the switch to non ethanol. I am thinking this was due to the high gusty winds and trying to maintain 70 plus mph. The cost difference of the non ethanol fuel compared to regular fuel is significant and I am not sure it is going to be worth cost increase. Right now it will be an additional .41 per gallon. What do you think?
Jag, what gearing are you running? If you've steepened it like many V owners have or bought a used one with the mod already done then your odometer will show 10% less miles traveled. A recalculation would be needed.
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post #17 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-12-2012, 12:40 AM Thread Starter
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Jag, what gearing are you running? If you've steepened it like many V owners have or bought a used one with the mod already done then your odometer will show 10% less miles traveled. A recalculation would be needed.
No I'm running stock sprockets. When my stock sprocket get close to being shot I will change it. I'm hoping the timing is works out to be when both the front and rear tire are due so I could just do it all at one time.
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post #18 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-12-2012, 08:17 AM
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No I'm running stock sprockets. When my stock sprocket get close to being shot I will change it. I'm hoping the timing is works out to be when both the front and rear tire are due so I could just do it all at one time.
Going up one tooth on the front is easy, no wheel removal. Your chain amd sprockets on this bike can last well over 20, 000 miles.
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post #19 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-14-2012, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by jagrugger View Post
I was hoping to improve to above 50 mpg, 60+ would be outstanding! My average is only 44/45 mpg and my rpm's are usually under 6 grand as my ride to work every day is mostly 45mph to 55mph posted so i do 50 to 60 mph. Its just weird how their is such a wide range of MPG's from bike to bike.
Last year my '09 V averaged an overall 47 mpg for a 6,733 mile cross-country tour that included interstate and high elevation mountain riding. The bike was equipped with a Givi windscreen and HT 7.5" Teton panniers. IMO...this represents what one might expect over time from a V.

FWIW...(based on what I had read on this forum) I gave very serious consideration to changing either the front or rear sproket...but didn't. After experiencing strong headwinds against my loaded bike and significant changes in elevation...I'm really glad I stayed with the stock gearing. IMO, the factory setup offers a reasonable balance for a wide range of riding conditions.

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post #20 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-10-2012, 01:49 AM
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This is very interesting as I drive 60 miles to and from work each day. I spend about half that time at 65 mph and the other half at 45. I go from 2,000 feet to sea level and back with high winds and I still average 48 to 52mpg.
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