Go Back   EcoModder Forum > EcoModding > Motorcycles / Scooters
Register Now
 Register Now
 

Reply  Post New Thread
 
Submit Tools LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-23-2014, 06:27 AM   #1 (permalink)
EcoModding Apprentice
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Cookeville,TN,USA
Posts: 118
Thanks: 15
Thanked 22 Times in 11 Posts
New member here to learn!

I'm excited to find this site and to start learning the basics for improving mpg on my 2014 Honda CTX700 bike with modest adjustments in riding style and modifications, but, while I certainly have interest in major modifications, such as streamlining, I'll probably just be looking personally at making just some minor changes to my own bike while reading about the real fuel misers on here.

I actually decided to start riding PTWs in the Spring of 2012 at 47 years old to: add a little spice to my commute; to downsize (reduce our family's autos down to one); and to decrease my already-low fuel consumption for my long, rural commute even further by switching to a PTW for all the days suitable, weather wise, for riding. I decided originally on a Piaggio BV350 scooter. In stock form, I was able to achieve low 70s for mpg in the summer time running pure gasoline. I really loved the scooter, but when I heard that Honda was coming out with a bike that better fit me and my style of riding with a power train that I had fallen in love with (670 cc parallel twin), I traded the BV350 for a 2014 CTX700. Now I've got a bike that is slightly more capable, without the cost and hassle of the maintenance cost associated with CVT components that may have arisen using a scooter for almost all highway use for many thousands of miles per year.

The Honda has been very good so far. In stock form, even with this bike being a multi-cylinder and 670 ccs, I was able to achieve an average of 77.3 mpg in the summer running pure, regular gas according to the odometer and assuming a 2% trip meter error. Cold weather and a tall windscreen came around the same time, and then I dropped down to around 70 mpg per tank. As the temps have risen late winter and early this spring, I've raised my mpg per tank up to around 71.5. At this point, I don't know how much the screen I chose has hurt, but I do think it is hurting my mpg at least a little. I've also strapped a 55-liter (approximately) tail box directly behind me on the passenger's seat, and from what I can tell, it has not hurt my economy whatsoever.

I've contacted Craig Vetter and plan to enter the Challenge @ Mansfield in July just to meet and greet and to see what me and my bike can do; not to win of course, but I do want to do as well as I can in the challenge and to meet all the requirements to finish as a qualified competitor.

I've been searching and reading different threads and will probably be asking questions that I can't find the answer regarding fairing windshields, sprockets and chains.

I've attached a picture (edit--posting pic didn't work) of my bike before I put a larger box on the rear that is mounted the same way. When I get a chance, I take some updated pictures, but now, instead of a matching Bestem 2012 box strapped to the seat, I've got a Dewalt ToughSystem 08204 tool box. It holds a lot more and is a much easier-to-use box, but I'll have to add another 15 liters or so to carry the four bags of groceries required for the Vetter Challenge. At this point, I looking at possibly velcro-ing a satchel of some type to the right side of the tool box.

  Reply With Quote
Alt Today
Popular topics

Other popular topics in this forum...

   
Old 03-23-2014, 09:16 AM   #2 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,587

Volt, gas only - '12 Chevrolet Volt Premium
90 day: 38.02 mpg (US)

Volt, electric only - '12 Chevrolet Volt Premium
90 day: 132.26 mpg (US)

Yukon Denali Hybrid - '12 GMC Yukon Denali Hybrid
90 day: 21.48 mpg (US)
Thanks: 177
Thanked 358 Times in 251 Posts
Welcome! There is a good population of people here who ride.
__________________




  Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2014, 10:47 AM   #3 (permalink)
Batman Junior
 
MetroMPG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: 1000 Islands, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 22,048

Blackfly - '98 Geo Metro
Team Metro
Last 3: 70.09 mpg (US)

MPGiata - '90 Mazda Miata
90 day: 53.56 mpg (US)

Winter beater Metro - '00 Chevrolet Metro
90 day: 61.98 mpg (US)

Fancy Metro - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage top spec
90 day: 58.72 mpg (US)

Even Fancier Metro - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage top spec
90 day: 58.34 mpg (US)
Thanks: 3,691
Thanked 6,504 Times in 3,369 Posts
Welcome to the forum, gregsfc.

Going to a Vetter event is a great idea. Once you do that, it'll be hard to get back out of the rabbit hole!
__________________
Latest mods: 3-cylinder Mitsubishi Mirage. EcoMods now in progress...
Ecodriving test:
Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown



EcoModder
has launched a forum for the efficient new Mitsubishi Mirage
www.MetroMPG.com - fuel efficiency info for Geo Metro owners
www.ForkenSwift.com - electric car conversion on a beer budget
  Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 03:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Sandy, Utah
Posts: 68

Ninjette - '05 kawasaki EX250
Thanks: 2
Thanked 20 Times in 17 Posts
Welcome Greg.

Jeff (who jumped down that rabbit hole about a year ago )
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-2014, 05:34 AM   #5 (permalink)
EcoModding Apprentice
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Cookeville,TN,USA
Posts: 118
Thanks: 15
Thanked 22 Times in 11 Posts
I guess that a little more reading is required for me to understand the "rabbit hole" thing.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-2014, 06:23 AM   #6 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
mikeyjd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Posts: 838

Matchbox - '93 Ford Festiva L
Team Ford
Last 3: 70.16 mpg (US)

Salamander - '99 Chrysler Concorde LXI
Team Dodge
90 day: 30.3 mpg (US)

Urquhart - '97 Toyota Tacoma 4x4 V6 3.4L DLX
Pickups
90 day: 25.81 mpg (US)

Smudge - '98 Toyota Tacoma
90 day: 40.65 mpg (US)

Calebro - '15 Renault Trafic 1.25 dci
90 day: 39.39 mpg (US)
Thanks: 1,380
Thanked 209 Times in 155 Posts
Welcome

Quote:
Originally Posted by gregsfc View Post
I guess that a little more reading is required for me to understand the "rabbit hole" thing.
"Alice in Wonder Land" reference I believe. Welcome to the forum. This is a good thread about getting more from your bike http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...50-a-8686.html
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-2014, 12:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
Hydrogen > EV
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: NW Ohio, United States
Posts: 2,017

Snow White and the 6.2 Dwarfs - '11 Chevrolet Corvette LT2
Last 3: 26.46 mpg (US)

Silver Flea - '05 Honda Insight
90 day: 58.96 mpg (US)
Thanks: 981
Thanked 383 Times in 279 Posts
The rabbit hole means going all in, or going full force.

So right now, you are thinking about it- when you are completely set on it, only thinking about it- you're in the rabbit hole.
__________________





Best Tanks:
Mustang - 54.83 mpg (US) at the Green Grand Prix
Insight - 82.91966 mpg (US) over 818.5 miles.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-2014, 02:48 PM   #8 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 5,927
Thanks: 877
Thanked 2,020 Times in 1,303 Posts
Get comfortable in the rabbit hole and watch your wallet grow heavy.

Welcome.

Hoping my cheap GZ250 hits 90 this summer.

regards
Mech
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-2014, 06:51 PM   #9 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: West Coast, USA
Posts: 513

B2300 - '96 Mazda B2300 SE

Focus - '05 Ford Focus ST
Thanks: 6
Thanked 75 Times in 54 Posts
Gearing

Welcome!

Noodling around for taller gears for a CB500x I found that the same sprockets are used for both the 500 and the 700 Hondas. The Automatic trans version 700 has a somewhat taller sprocket combination that can swap over to the manual trans model of both the 500 and 700 bikes. I think it's one tooth larger on the countershaft. These are probably dealer only items at this point but the cost should still be fairly reasonable.

Fewer RPMs will do nothing but help the MPG and make freeways RPMs more tranquil.

Good to see such good numbers on the CTX. Do you have a repeatable number for a steady speed, like say 70 mph?
__________________
Good design is simple. Getting there isn't.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2014, 06:56 AM   #10 (permalink)
EcoModding Apprentice
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Cookeville,TN,USA
Posts: 118
Thanks: 15
Thanked 22 Times in 11 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by beatr911 View Post
Welcome!

Noodling around for taller gears for a CB500x I found that the same sprockets are used for both the 500 and the 700 Hondas. The Automatic trans version 700 has a somewhat taller sprocket combination that can swap over to the manual trans model of both the 500 and 700 bikes. I think it's one tooth larger on the countershaft. These are probably dealer only items at this point but the cost should still be fairly reasonable.

Fewer RPMs will do nothing but help the MPG and make freeways RPMs more tranquil.

Good to see such good numbers on the CTX. Do you have a repeatable number for a steady speed, like say 70 mph?
Thanks to everyone for the warm welcome!

I've got too many variables and have never really been into what a vehicle can achieve mpg wise at a steady speed, because no one really rides or drives a vehicle that way, even though I do understand the usefulness for comparison purposes. I once achieved 81 mpg on one tank when my bike was new at a pretty consistent 65 mph with stock windshield, but I've never checked my odometer against a gps, and that tank did include a few miles of just riding around. I was using pure gasoline, and it was a brand new chain and sprocket. Nowadays, it's cooler weather, I've not taken any long trips, I've got a taller windshield, and the chain/sprocket has been adjusted a couple of times. I'm averaging about 71.5 (still no trip meter verification), but I do assume a 2% trip meter error and have always included that in my calculations.

I think I'll wait until I've worn out a chain or sprocket and then look at what you've suggested. I'd like only slightly taller gearing, so using the DCT sprockets makes sense. Other than just for better mpg, there would be additional advantages to the stock system on the manual transmission. For one thing, this parallel twin revs so quickly (like for sport-bike riding, which is fatiguing when one is not in the mood for quick shifting or high-revving riding), and the way it is geared makes it nearly impossible to ride it like a cruiser during acceleration. A little taller gearing would make it a more useful bike for easy-going riders, and I would think that 1st and 2nd gear would be more useful for around-town riding for any style of riding, however, I wouldn't want to go too much taller, because @ 60 mph, it turns a relatively-slow 3200-3300 RPM, and I'd like it so that I can still use 5th and 6th gear for most of my riding along winding roads, etc, which is part of my daily commute.

Looking closer into the Vetter Challenge, I'm starting to get put a little put off and have lost some of my excitement about the event. I love what Mr. Vetter does has been doing for many, many years, and the fact that he keeps this event going, and I respect his bias towards bikes being streamlined for future transportation, but looking at the supplemental rules, I'm a little confused as why he has decided that only stream-lined bikes that are streamlined in the same way that he has done it have a chance to compete and win without extreme modification, lots of $$$ having to do with building in room for 4 upright grocery bags, which may require up to 20" of vertical height.

In the supplemental rules he discusses some of the complaints that he has encountered from other riders, and his arguments as to why all bikes must pass the 4-bag test to be certified competitors. I think that (really) neither of his assertions are defensible when it gets down to it. Reason #1--He feels that motorcycles need to be usable, and that for a motorcycle to be a first-choice ride, it needs to carry 4 upright grocery bags. I think this in incorrect for two reasons. First, I don't think that MCs need that much carrying capacity to be usable, because I've got a 55 liter tool box on mine and am using it for just about everything I would ever need except to carry very long items, and if I wanted to carry very long items, a streamlined bike like his streamlined Helix would not work for such utility no more than mine would, and secondly, even if one does buy into his assertion that a motorcycle needs to carry that many groceries, why would it need to stay in an arbitrary container such as grocery bags. I could take my tool box in a store, load it up with about three bags of groceries and mount it on my bike; or I could load up about three grocery bags; take it out to my bike; unload the bags into my box, and when I get to my house, simply carry the box into the house in one trip; easier than carrying 4 bags of groceries.

Mr. Vetter's 2nd assertion is that what would we learn by having vehicles designed differently than his streamlined bike if we had bikes of different shapes that would do better holding the groceries in a different manner? I think we could learn plenty. Fuel economy is not just about low drag and running minimal horsepower, and while I understand that a rounded, tapered front, pointed back with feet forward, seat down, and handle bars back is optimal, that does not mean that riders can't show folks what different technologies can do at improving fuel economy. For instance, Honda has shown a concept bike recently with the new 745 parallel twin with a more aerodynamic fairing. They claim 80 mph. And while I understand that it takes only so much horsepower with a streamline package to accomplish this event, and while I understand that a 745 parallel twin, spark-ignition, multicylinder will never win the event, lots of different type rides should at least be listed with other qualified finishers, so that everyone can look and say, wow, that bike will achieve 80 mpg, but as the rules are stated, just about anything else short of alot of money and ingenuity will always get an asterisk by their name and bike.

Anyway, I've still got a good attitude and will still compete and am glad there is such an event, but I'm not going to try to do the modifications it would take to carry all those groceries in the manner that they must be carried. I want to show what my only slightly-modified, on-the-cheap, usable bike can do to myself and to anyone else that might care, so I guess I'll have to do it without being a qualified competitor.

  Reply With Quote
Reply  Post New Thread


Thread Tools




Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.5.2
All content copyright EcoModder.com