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  #21  
Old 22nd February 2009
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I'm kinda new to riding and everything so forgive me if I sound stupid, but it also depends on the stop and go of riding on the street instead of the highway. I think it has some to do w/ taking off at a light. I tend to get to the speed limit as quickly as possible. I know it uses more fuel that way. I have new pipes but I don't have a heavy breather intake or a new EFI in my bike yet so I guess it all depends on you and what you have done to your bike!
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  #22  
Old 22nd February 2009
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Originally Posted by Kev M View Post
Gas quality (E10 vs non-E10) and ambient conditions (like thinner air at altitude vs. sea level) can lead to large swings in mileage.

We normally get around 40 mpg on E10 near sea level, but have gotten 50-55 mpg at altitude, on non-E10... with 883s AND 1200s...

Huh. Well I haven't been in Alabama long enough to check my mileage. Moving has kept me in the house doing this and that!! I start work this week so I hope to have some numbers soon.

I sure that I will have a bit more power here in Alabama. I huess it won't be so bad losing a few mpg...
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  #23  
Old 22nd February 2009
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I think this may be based on the type of fuel and the OCTANE grade consistency. For example, I have a 2006 XL1200-Low (Carb-model) with 10,000+ miles. It has the Screamin' Eagle air-filter and mufflers; otherwise, she's stock.
I haver never gotten less than 48 mpg, and typically get well over 50 mpg with mostly two-up riding! I use 93 octane Shell (hi-test); but here in Ohio, the state auditor will only certify the volume of a gallon of gasoline, but not the consistency of the octane! Last summer, while touring the Smoky Mtns., I filled up with Mobil/Exxon 93 in Tennessee. The octane grade is regulated there, and I got 55mpg on a two-up ride from Pigeon Forge to the Dragon, on to Cherokee, NC, and back to Gatlinburg. This included average speeds from 25 mph (Dragon) to 65mph, and altitudes ranging from 1,000 ft Above Mean Sea Level, and >3,000 ft AMSL.
Perhaps, some of the issue is also the richness in fuel to air mixture that the Harley EFI seems to blend, as it seeks to keep the optimum ratio for the moment. A buddy of mine who works as a mechanic for Jacksonville county, noted that he heard EFI police bikes have always gotten less than advertised mileage. Though one might expect this on chase-bikes, etc., the older carburetor-models seem to have produced better fuel economy than their newer police bikes.
I plan to move up to a big-twin for Touring with the wife, and keep the sporty for individual rides and for my son to use on short trips with the old man. I am thinking that the EFI might be nice, but I would be afraid to tackle a rebuild of the EFI-based bike. Yet I am willing and able to tear a bike apart to the crank and rebuild if a carb is present. Also makes for much easier hop-ups, no computer to program, etc.
I am also thinking that this 'Fly-By-Wire' (FBW) throttle idea is crazy. There has been a substantiated report of a death in TX from the FBW either shorting, or developing an open circuit (during a sweeping corner) resulting in the engine red-lining unexpectedly, throwing the biker to his death. One in a million is too much for this old boy. All of this EFI justification is based on the push for cleaner emissions!
When does enough become enough? Probably when we are riding caged-electric-scoots with recordings of the old Harley v-twin engines playing softly (<85dba) through handlebar-mounted speakers.
Sorry I got sidetracked there folks, I guess the past few months of riding in a cage, has put me in a funk.

THE GOOD NEWS- ONLY TWO WEEKS UNITL DAYTONA BIKE WEEK!

I'll check in after I buy a 2006 or earlier big twin....
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  #24  
Old 23rd February 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vettelover84 View Post
Huh.
?Huh?

We've toured all over the US on our bikes and seen these variances in the same day on different tankfuls. Variances that occur side-by-side effecting more than one bike at a time.


Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveSport'60 View Post
I think this may be based on the type of fuel and the OCTANE grade consistency. For example, I have a 2006 XL1200-Low (Carb-model) with 10,000+ miles. It has the Screamin' Eagle air-filter and mufflers; otherwise, she's stock.
Uh, NO, that's not how octane works - it's highly unlikely octane is going to have a noticeable effect on your mileage. We've probably gotten most of our highest mileage figures on the lowest octane we've used.
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  #25  
Old 1st March 2009
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As Kevin pointed out, the higher octane the gas, the less fuel economy due to lower btu's per gallon

Also a dirty little secrete that the gas stations don't want you to know. The Highest octane fuels will typically have much higher consentration of water per gallon.
Most stations have two tanks, A high test tank and as regular tank. *midgrade is a mixture of the two*. Because of the lower demand for higher octane fuel it sits longer allowing more water to collect because of lower turnover in inventory. All fuel will collect water over time.

Regular gas has 125000 BTU's per gallon
Ethanol has 84400 BTU's per gallon
In a 90% gas 10% ethonol mix will have 120940 btu's per gallon
Now the ethonol can almost absorb its own volume in water.
If water displaces 5 %
120940 * .05 = 6050
120940 - 6050 = ~115000btus
plus water takes ~1000 btus per pound to convert into steam.
gallon of water weighs 8 lbs times .05 = .4 lbs * 1000 btu's = 400 btu's
115000 - 400 = 114600 btu's
Now from 125000 btu's of regular gasoline
114600 is 91% of the original energy left and remember the water content could be higher. 5% water is the amount it will absorb without separating. I have seen even regularly rotated regular gas have water separating out which means 6-7 % water content. Anyone who owns old tractors with glass fuel separators or diesel trucks with water separators will attest to this.

Which brings up another point, water or running dry is hell on high pressure fuel pumps. Nothing will destroy a diesel fuel pump faster than water in the fuel, while never having a sportster pump apart to look at the design I have to imagine that water can affect them, maybe why the reports of pump failures. Water do to condensation out of the air while the bike is setting can put large amounts of water into the tank, especially in an unheated/airconditioned garage.

Third, EFI system typically adapt to the driving style. Typically the way they are programed after they learn for a period of time they stop learning and only make minor adjustments. Before you try to extract max MPG out of your sporty maybe you should unhook your battery for 10 mins to clear the computer and let it relearn your new "granny" driving habits, not your old "devil" ones, maybe that will help

As a note, my 07' 883XL has maintained a solid 51mpg for over 20000 miles so far. The conditions are typically 60 miles a day 5 days a week until they start salting roads in indiana, I have ridden down to 10 degrees F. Of that 60 miles 40 miles it two lane state road ridden at 60mph, and 20 miles is city driving.
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  #26  
Old 1st March 2009
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My fuel light typically comes on in the 95 mile range. With mostly interstate and highway driving, the bike is usually getting between 40-45 mpg. I won't push it past 120 miles before fueling up again.
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  #27  
Old 2nd March 2009
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Ive only ran 2 tanks of gas thru my 08 1200 so far All fairly spirited city riding Part way thru the 2nd tank I installed a set of homemade IED's Last tank the fuel light came on at 120 miles = 40 mpg
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  #28  
Old 2nd March 2009
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stop and vs hwy makes a world of difference,if i ride through the city i only get 35-40 mpg,on the hwy with no stops or traffic i get 55-58mpg
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  #29  
Old 2nd March 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IBEW Sparky View Post
Ive only ran 2 tanks of gas thru my 08 1200 so far All fairly spirited city riding Part way thru the 2nd tank I installed a set of homemade IED's Last tank the fuel light came on at 120 miles = 40 mpg
huh, you installed a set of improvised explosive devises...do tell.....
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