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The Toad
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It takes a certain amount of energy to push a motorcycle through the air. So a Burgman scooter is going to take a similar amount of energy to push it through the air as a Ninja. Most bikes get in the 40s on the highway. Any of my 750, 1000s and 1100s I've owned all over the years have gotten around 40 highway mpg. The best mileage bike I ever owned was a Sportster. It got 50+ regularly. You might consider a Sportster. They are handy around town too.



 

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All valid points - I previously had a Burgman 650, ALMOST a real motorcycle but suffered from the small wheel issue.

Plus side - No shifting and easy in traffic.

Minus side - Kinda a big boat for only a 650 and when driven hard low mpgs.

All depends on what you want them to do. Don't want to shift - best choice. Want in city wrist twist and go best choice.

Want a REAL motorcycle - worst choice.

 

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kwrong

kwrong don't comment on areas you have no education, training or experience. You have been so wrong so many times. Remember your wrong assumption about energy and velocity. Just cause you hack some code doesn't make you an engineer.
 

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Shouldn't you be out buying douche right now?

Yeah, because you need to be able to design a bridge in order to make an effective anecdotal observation about motorcycle fuel mileage.

If Seruzawa needs a master's degree to talk about fuel mileage, then you might want to consider buying a motorcycle so you can comment on motorcycling. Tool shed.

Can we PLEASE ban this guy? Please? He contribues as much to this site as a homeless guy does to the local property tax collector.

--The Fox
 

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Re: kwrong

God you're an ass. I think you've got a f*king null pointer in your brain.

So I've been holding off on this, but you've earned it now. In the Seattle area all software development managers know that only the losers work for Boeing. If you're a good engineer you will work for a high paying dynamic company that makes interesting stuff. 40 hours a week, 9-5 does not interest intelligent motivated engineers to do good work. This town is ripe with opportunities to build cool stuff and get rewarded for it. Most of the companies I have worked for, MS, startups, you name it, tend to be wary of resumes that have Boeing on them because they mean that the employee is rigid, probably not willing to put out the extra work, and is most likely working with ancient technology.

But you've been promoted to management right? Looks like you rose to the cream of the crap.
 

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The Toad
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: Shouldn't you be out buying douche right now?

Don't stop him. Let's see the genius's dissertation on the relationships of aerodynamics, rolling friction and the myriad other factors that are involved in determining fuel mileage.

Or he could actually go out and ride motorcycles and learn for himself.... nah.
 

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holy god. your 1500 nomad gets 50 mpg? my commuter - a suzuki bandit 600s - gets something like 40 mpg on a good day. and i just had the carbs sync'd...

B^(
 

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Have a 06 Piaggio X9 500...really a 450cc engine. Does great around town, 53 to 55 mpg. 65 mph and up becomes a workout for the engine and gas mileage drops into the mid to lower 40's. My Suzuki "Wee Strom 650" hovers around 45-50 mpg for both city and hiway but in stop and go traffic mpg drops down to the lower 40's. Of course being a fat bastard of 220lbs doesn’t help either!
 

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Yeah, Sporties get amazing fuel economy and are really easy rides around town. The rubber mount motors are smooth once you are rolling too. A 1200R costs the same as a Burgman 650 Executive and it will be cheaper to maintain too. The Sporty won't have the built in storage or full fairing protection, but you won't look like a nerd riding it either. Well, maybe not.
 

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The point of an aerodynamic small-engined scooter is to sell in an environment where small engines cost less in road tax, in insurance costs, and where it may be possible to ride them without a seperate motorcycle licence or when still too young to drive a car. In other words, Europe. The aerodynamics are there to appeal to younger riders, and to keep the rain off mature owners who have so far always driven cars and are not used to real weather. It's a cultural thing entirely: gas mileage has nothing to do with it. The point of big-engined cruisers, on the other hand, is so that the motor turns more slowly at a given speed and gives a relaxed and economical ride along with long engine life, which in a consumer society obsessed with this year's model is a point often ignored. The point of in-line fours is to provide acceleration above all other considerations, and assumes that fuel is a cheap and endlessly renewable resource. Therefore both cruisers and scooters will have a place in the future, but inline fours are approaching the end of their period of supremacy. Since you are in the US rather than Europe, stick with your Nomad and make it last.
 

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I don't know what the mileage is on the "new style" large scooters. There are numerous details that affect mileage. In stop and go situations weight plays a bigger role than aerodynamics. Also, in traffic large engines will burn more fuel than smaller engines of similar efficiency. The importance of aerodynamics increases with speed. Around town it isn't a big deal.



The crossover between big engines and small engines under acceleration conditions varies a good bit (big HP engines work less to accelerate a given mass than smaller HP engines, so you have to work smaller HP engines harder). Again, a variety of factors are at work here.



No jaw flapping can predict the outcome. Real world experience would tell the tale.



The points of small-engined scooters are good mileage, small size, easy handling in cramped quarters, performance good enough to keep up with traffic, inexpensive to buy.



Perhaps a better choice than a scooter would be something like a 250 Ninja or 500 twin something-or-other. Economical to buy, cheap to operate, fast enough to get on the interstate.
 

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It's all about revs. That monster V-Twin spins at a much lower rpm at cruise speed than a 600, and because the fuel used is a factor of volume moved in a given timeframe rather than a simple measure of displacement, those big cruisers get better mileage than one might normally think. Also, because the torque curve is so much better down low, there's no need to use a lot of fuel to accelerate from a stop, saving even more.



I'm just a leatherneck ground pounder though; I don't have a fancy engineering degree or anything. I don't know what the hell I'm talking about.



--The Fox
 

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Genius.

Awesome breakdown. You get a gold star.

(Seriously. This is the most intelligent post I've read in a long time.)

--The Fox
 

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Ditto on the fuel mileage. I thought a Burgman or Silverwing would make a great commuter, until I saw the mileage. My Buell XB12R pulls in nearly 50mpg under my normal riding conditions and almost never dips below 40mpg on the street.
 

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nice explanation. i hadn't considered the rpm/torque difference.

philosophize on bro man.
 

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Who cares? The people who ride them find them to be fun, convenient modes of transportation. Ride what you ride and let others ride what they ride.



For the life of me I can't figure out why these things have to go under the microscope every three to four months.

Maybe it's because most people riding them tend to smile and have a good time. That's simply a product of being themselves and not giving a rat's ass what anyone thinks of thier ride.





Rub
 

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thanks for the previous explanations about twins versus in-line four's, but it got me to thinking (using the explanations above as a reference)... 1500cc's at 3500rpm (the nomad's peak torque is around 3000rpm) is burning more than 600cc's at 7000rpm (my general in-town max), so i'm skeptical of the huge gap in fuel economies. i looked into the MO archives for some corroboration (anecdotal as it may be), and i found this excerpt from the classic tourer comparo 2003:

"OBSERVED FUEL MILEAGE:

BMW R 1200CL: 38.8Mpg

Harley Road King: 39.4Mpg

Kawasaki Nomad: 32.6Mpg

Victory V92 TC: 31.5Mpg

Yamaha Silverado: 37.9Mpg

*Note: Mileage was taken on a group test ride, with all bikes rotated through 5 test riders, over 300+ miles of mixed freeway, surface street, canyon and country roads. This is a very fair and accurate "Real World" situation, with all bikes measured at the same time."
 

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The Toad
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Fuel consumption also depends on throttle opening. A larger displacement engine may run at a smaller opening than a smaller engine thus evening out the fuel usage.



It's gonna take x amount of horsepower to push a bike through the air. Say it's a full sized naked cruiser. Whether that bike has a 1500cc engine or a 600cc engine it still takes x horsepower. Fuel usage will tend to be the same in comparable bikes despite displacement. This is why both 600cc and 1000cc sportbikes will run similar fuel mileage at the same speed. You gotta burn the same amount of fuel to develop the same horsepower in similarly efficient engines.



As another example I once put a larger countershaft sprocket on my KZ750 to reduce engine revs on the Interstate. My fuel mileage did not change one bit. It took the same amount of horsepower to push the bike through the air and thus used the same amount of fuel.



Having fewer cylinders, etc twins are capable of getting better fuel mileage than 4s because they have less internal friction. Just calculate the surface areas of two large pistons vs 4 small ones to see the comparison. Then you/ve got more cam bearings, rod bearing, etc. All increase internal friction.
 
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