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Old 10-04-2008, 02:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Motorcycle + block heater = stupid idea?

The title pretty much says it. I was thinking about for a couple reasons: I've been advised to stay away from low viscosity oils in my bike because it uses a wet clutch, so I get more drag until the oil warms up which takes about 2 miles I'm guessing based on the hand on the oil tank test (no gauge/2.5 quarts of oil). This is about half my trip most of the time. The other reason is it runs noticeably better when it's really warm out and after it's idled for 30-60 seconds. More even rpm and less smoke. Plus, why not? It'd only take 100w heater for about an hour and I could reuse fill/check level plug. Thoughts or ideas?

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Old 10-04-2008, 03:00 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Makes total sense to me. Like you said: why not?
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Old 10-05-2008, 02:37 AM   #3 (permalink)
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what weight of oil are you currently running? this is in the Honda cm400? it should have 10W40 if I remember right, I've had good luck with the Amsoil motorcycle oil in cold weather, ran it in my Yamaha RD350 all year when I had it, and because it was only in the gear box it took a while to heat up, even longer in Wisconsin in the winter, and never had make the clutch act poorly.
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Old 10-05-2008, 10:26 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryland View Post
what weight of oil are you currently running? this is in the Honda cm400? it should have 10W40 if I remember right, I've had good luck with the Amsoil motorcycle oil in cold weather, ran it in my Yamaha RD350 all year when I had it, and because it was only in the gear box it took a while to heat up, even longer in Wisconsin in the winter, and never had make the clutch act poorly.
Yep, 10W40. I think it would run better cold if I got the carb tuned up too, but was just wondering if this would help any.
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Old 10-05-2008, 11:13 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Why not try it out? Rig up a pair of 100 watt light bulbs or something. Nestle it in some insulation and duct tape it to the block for an hour or so. (I say use a pair because the heat xfer will be poor compared to a direct contact.)

I think you'll notice the difference in the way the bike runs, shifts & coasts if you pre-heat the motor/tranny.
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Old 10-05-2008, 04:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I've been thinking about getting a glue on block heater for my Ninja. I pick up a 200watt magnet mount heater to use over the winter last year(Sits outside all year). Found out there wasn't a bit of steel I could stick it to. So I just kinda wedged it in there. I don't think it really did much good. But this year seeing as I do a lot of riding at night (been getting down to about 40's lately)and started to read Ecomodder, I went ahead and did a partial radiator block (painted cardboard). I've noticed a considerable increase in performance and my mileage has gone way up. I do a lot of short trips 3-6miles and I've found it doesn't like running low RPM's (about 3000) when it's cold.

So i'd say go for it

One thing I was wondering is if you could design one that could be battery operated 12v. It would gives the bike an extra boost of heat just before/until it's warm? That way you could use it when your out and about as well. I don't know how big a pack you would need to do something like that. But I think the increased warm up would help when it comes to mileage.
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Old 10-05-2008, 08:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
Why not try it out? Rig up a pair of 100 watt light bulbs or something. Nestle it in some insulation and duct tape it to the block for an hour or so. (I say use a pair because the heat xfer will be poor compared to a direct contact.)

I think you'll notice the difference in the way the bike runs, shifts & coasts if you pre-heat the motor/tranny.
That's quite the idea! I've got a bunch of 100w incandescents sitting around here since I switched to CFLs, but I've already got a 200w magnetic heater and was looking at getting a couple of the stick on heaters for my truck, but they probably don't like being moved, so if the magnet doesn't work I may have to try this.
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Old 10-05-2008, 08:29 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FastPlastic View Post
I've been thinking about getting a glue on block heater for my Ninja. I pick up a 200watt magnet mount heater to use over the winter last year(Sits outside all year). Found out there wasn't a bit of steel I could stick it to. So I just kinda wedged it in there. I don't think it really did much good. But this year seeing as I do a lot of riding at night (been getting down to about 40's lately)and started to read Ecomodder, I went ahead and did a partial radiator block (painted cardboard). I've noticed a considerable increase in performance and my mileage has gone way up. I do a lot of short trips 3-6miles and I've found it doesn't like running low RPM's (about 3000) when it's cold.

So i'd say go for it

One thing I was wondering is if you could design one that could be battery operated 12v. It would gives the bike an extra boost of heat just before/until it's warm? That way you could use it when your out and about as well. I don't know how big a pack you would need to do something like that. But I think the increased warm up would help when it comes to mileage.
I'd much rather have a kick start and no battery at all, but since I didn't get everything I wanted, the battery I have has enough to handle getting the bike started.
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Old 11-26-2008, 04:29 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Just found this...

Motorcycle engine heater
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Old 11-26-2008, 04:54 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I'm about to put some 0W40 shell rotella T into my ATV with a wet clutch. It's full synthetic and although its not rated for motorcycles people have been ok with using it. It would probably help mileage all the time. It would also flow better than 10W40 at lower temps but near freezing 10W40 is fine too.
If my clutch slips then I'll try to remember to post it here.
Ian

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