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Messages - hppants

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Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: Pictures of my bike
« on: October 13, 2017, 04:02:18 PM »
Good on ya, Dind.  The 700s was one of Honda's best, for sure.  In many respects, it was way ahead of its time. 

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Looking through the curve
« on: October 10, 2017, 06:46:24 PM »
I agree with your instructor. You will go where you look. I've known more than one rider gone down because he target fixed on debris.  When I'm riding curves, I am always focused on the vanishing point of the curve.  I can thank a wonderful lady that used to frequent this website, who is arguably the best rider I have ever met, for that jewel of advice.

If you notice the debris or other object far enough in advance (hopefully by screening well ahead at the vanishing point), then you will hopefully have time to counter steer and avoid it.   Even If you hit the debris while leaning, the bike will slide a little but very likely will not result in a loss of control if you hold your line and ride through it.

I'm also a big subscriber to the theory of lane position in a curve (outside/inside/outside).  If you put yourself on the inside of the lane at the apex of the curve (where the highest probability of running out of lean occurs - regardless of the reason), then you have the full 10 foot width of the lane to use for recovery.  At that point, even if you panic and grab a handful of brake, the bike will stand up and naturally drift you toward the outside of the lane and likely away from whatever it is you panicked on .  Now, if the hazard runs completely across the entire lane, then you only hope is to ride it out.  To do so successfully takes a combination of skill, confidence in your tires, hope that length along the road of the hazard is not so long that you will find grip before you lose control, and quite frankly, a decent amount of luck.  But if the road hazard is that large, I would think that you would see it far enough ahead that you could slow down to a safer speed before you get to it.

One known exception to this is diesel/fuel/oil on a wet road.  In my experience, I do not think that a rider can actually see this before it's too late.  And if the spill is more than 1/2 the width of the lane, you are going down.  This is why we dress for the crash (ATGATT).

Often when I'm riding, I ask myself the "can I avoid the deer in time" question.  What I mean is I'm asking "If a deer appears at the vanishing point of the curve, at my current speed and skill level, under the current conditions, will I have enough pavement to stop?"  If I'm being honest, sometimes that answer is a resounding "NO".  Most times I slow down a few MPH, but admittedly, sometimes I'm having so much fun, I do not.

I know - better written than done, and I can't honestly say that I've practiced what I preach 100% of the time. But this is what I think we should try to do.

Your Ride Reports / Re: Sliimey Crud Run - Fall 2017
« on: October 04, 2017, 06:37:11 AM »
Looks like a nice time was had by all.  Thanks for sharing your pictures.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: First start after 15 years
« on: September 28, 2017, 06:07:54 AM »
Honda really did that one right.  They are so reliable, you almost feel guilty for not paying more attention to them.

I loved everyday I owned my CB750. 

Well done.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: What are those ODOMETERS up to?
« on: September 22, 2017, 04:12:44 PM »
It's good to read about nighthawks being ridden.  One of my good riding buddies put well over 120K on a late model 750.  And when I tell you he rode the PISS out of that bike, believe it.

I bought another late model nighthawk for parting out for $100.00.  The owner bought a gold wing and let it sit.  95K miles.  Sill had hone marks on the cylinder walls.  I made almost $3,000.00 on the parts for that bike, sold most of them on this forum.

Honda did this one right.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Scariest ride ever
« on: September 18, 2017, 06:24:13 AM »
Alan - you and I fish in the same hole.

During the summer here in south Louisiana, I'll take a chance w/out the rain gear.  Shoot - it's practically raining 24 hours a day anyway with 80-plus % humidity and 90-plus degrees.  Getting wetter (if that's even possible) is kind of refreshing.

However everywhere else, I don't care if the sky is cloudless, I won't leave camp (or hotel) without my frog togs.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: More Fun with Fuel....
« on: September 14, 2017, 10:49:08 AM »
DD - that is great.  If I got your results, I'd run Unicorn Gravy through my bike.  When I had a '96 750, I would usually get 45-47 mpg, on RARE occasion, 49-50 (55 mph stroll through the back country).

Where are you located?  If high altitude, was your bike re-jetted for that?

Stablemates / Re: The 650's Get a Peculiar Friend
« on: September 13, 2017, 06:06:04 AM »
Those crash test videos are impressive.  For such a small car, it holds up very well under the crash tests.

We pay about $0.10 per KW for electricity, including taxes and fees.  That means I could charge the battery for that vehicle for $1.70, and get 80 miles of use out of it.  The cheapest regular grade gasoline here is $2.27 a gallon today.  In today's dollars, that equates to 1.34 charges, or a gasoline equivalent "fuel mileage" of 106.8 mpg!!!!

^^^^^ THAT has got my attention.

It looks like you can buy that car for about $17,500 after the federal tax incentive, and before sales tax/title/license.  That compares fairly close to the cost of a sub-compact/mini gasoline car.

In 6-8 years, you have to buy about $4,000 in batteries, but I wonder how that offsets to the cost of gas engine maintenance?

It would appear that the electric vehicle is becoming more affordable and competitive to the conventional drivetrain.  Without the tax incentive, I don't think so.  But the numbers are much closer than even 2-3 years ago.

Stablemates / Re: The 650's Get a Peculiar Friend
« on: September 12, 2017, 03:55:40 PM »
The hood space is next to nothing.  Leaves much more room inside, I imagine.

Are those vehicles crash tested, and if so, how do they fare compared to a comparable sized petro vehicle?

What about insurance cost, again comparably speaking?

Did you have to make any modifications to your home electrical in order to house the charger?  If you wanted to take a short over night trip, is there a portable charger you can bring?  Or does it always carry the charger with it?

Finally, how many kilowatts of electricity does it take to charge the batteries fully from dead?  IOW - what is the effective fuel cost for your 80-100 miles of range?

I like the green - it looks like a fun car to drive.  I was never in the market for an electric car, but unlike MA, Louisiana offers little to no tax incentives for these.  Go figure - we dig holes for oil....

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: More Fun with Fuel....
« on: September 11, 2017, 07:08:54 AM »
I've heard that water cooled motorcycle engines run hotter than air-cooled.  Nearly all are now water cooled in order for them to run hot enough to meet current emission standards.  I've never been able to substantiate that, as I don't know how hot air cooled engines run.  I suppose in the absence of any air flow, they will continue to heat up until they overheat.

Can anyone fathom a guess as to what in premium fuel (higher octane rating or additive) might cause a NH engine to warm up faster (less total choke required)?  Has the idle speed (or choke rpm at comparable positions) thought to be higher?

I would think that the higher octane rating (slower rate of burn) would lead to more exhaust popping, rather than less.  With a slower rate of burn, all other things equal in the motor, one would think that the possibility of some unburnt air/fuel getting past the open exhaust valve on the exhaust stroke, where it would be ignited with the hot exhaust.

FWIW - I tried a tank full of premium in my FJR on my recent Arkansas trip.  As much as I could, I tried to duplicate conditions, even though I know I did not.  Regardless, there was no difference in fuel mileage.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: New Bike Hauler
« on: September 06, 2017, 11:13:16 AM »
Baja - congrats on your new vehicle.  It's a fine truck, and I'm lusting after that exact model (double cab v/s crew) because the bed is slightly longer and the truck is slightly less expensive.  However, I suppose my current 15 year old Silverado may never crap out on me.  There's something about an old chevy truck.  They just don't quit.  I hope you have good luck and enjoyment with yours.

I would suggest you move quickly toward getting the sprayed on bed liner (professionally done, not DIY).  That would be a great enhancement to your new vehicle.

As for the bike, I'm from the "truck" side of the debate.  Towing a trailer (especially long distances) is a PITA.  Since trailers aren't used often, the tires are always questionable.  Your fuel mileage is lower, and you should tow at a much slower speed than without the trailer.  Just about anywhere, you can back into a swale or similar and greatly reduce the load/unload angle for the bike.  Regardless, just make sure you tie the bike down with no less than 4 good racheting straps.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Placebo or Real? 87 or 92 octane
« on: August 30, 2017, 06:17:12 PM »
FWIW, I'm subscribed.

A spreadsheet of data that DD is proposing would be worth reading.  Furthermore, I'm not too stubborn to learn something new.  I'm leaving tomorrow for a 5 day, 1500 mile trip.  I'll try at least one tank of premium and see if any difference are observed/felt, including mileage.  Remember, I ride an FJR, so any input to your project would be worthless.  None the less, I'm curious...

I still stand by my comments, but am not at all proud of my tone.  That is not who I am.  Granted, I am sensitive to the issue, but all here (and everywhere) are entitled to their opinion.  My apologies to anyone (especially DD) for any offense offered.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Placebo or Real? 87 or 92 octane
« on: August 27, 2017, 06:04:08 PM »
 Fair enough. Agree to disagree. Thanks for reading my post.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Placebo or Real? 87 or 92 octane
« on: August 27, 2017, 02:38:40 PM »
I think we are getting closer to common ground.  Additives could do something, but since I don't know what they are, or what they do, it would be impossible to refute it.

As for the "50% less choke", compared to .... what?  What was the temperature both day?  Barometric pressure?  How long had it been since the bike was run for both instances?  If you are comparing how the throttle performs when the bike is fully warmed, did you somehow apply EXACTLY the same throttle on the same road for exactly the same comparison?

it's an air cooled motor with a manual choke.  At least my bike uses a CPU that is sensing the MAF, O2, coolant temp, and other parameters before deciding that the bike is "warmed up" and therefore, requires no "choke" (which is really an enrichment of the injectors).

I'm sure you weren't hallucinating.  But that doesn't mean that the feelings you got were attributed to the premium fuel.

If we could agree that you simply cannot duplicate two tanks of gas the exact same way under the exact same conditions to make a true comparison, and I'm not sure we can agree at this point, then perhaps a "blind test" might be a good idea.  Get a buddy to help you - go through 10 tanks of fuel (burn at least 90% of the tank) and ask your buddy to fill up the bike when you are not looking.  5 tanks of regular, 5 tanks of premium.  Take notes and declare to your buddy which you think is which.

If you get 7 out of 10 right, then I'll eat crow.  It won't change the science, but at least it will lend credence to your feelings.

I guess by now you have realized that this kind of hits a nerve with me.  For decades, I have felt like oil companies have been misleading the public with their "buy my premium snake oil for 25% more and your engine will run better, get better fuel mileage, etc" baloney (IMO).  There's a Racetrac (independent) fuel station near my house.  It's directly next to a Texaco and a Shell.  On many occasions, I've seen the SAME tanker truck fill up the underground tanks at all 3 locations.  Same exact fuel.  $0.20 difference in price.  Pisses me off....

Your Ride Reports / Re: Hurricane Mountain Road or an Ode to Design Flaw
« on: August 27, 2017, 09:57:45 AM »
I did enjoy the ride!!  Thanks for that.

Wifey and I were up there last September for leaf peeping.  Mass, Maine, NH, and Vermont - wonderful trip.  While in NH, we drove through all of that (except Hurricane Mountain road) - it was really nice.

In my neck of the woods, I know a few roads like H/M Rd, real low speed tight ribbons that usually parallel a bayou where you can get away from all crowds and just be intimately part of the geography.  I like those type of places a lot.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Placebo or Real? 87 or 92 octane
« on: August 27, 2017, 09:26:27 AM »
it's undebatable because science (specifically physics and thermodynamics) don't lie.  And science doesn't care how it makes anyone feel.

If we can all agree that all other things being equal (for the sake of this discussion), the only way for a given engine to make more power is make either burn more fuel or make it burn the same fuel more efficiently.  That is it - plain and simple.

Hopefully we can all agree that just changing the grade of fuel doesn't cause the NH engine to burn MORE fuel, although it might be interesting to learn if the specific gravity of premium fuel is different than regular fuel, and if so, with CV carbs, it MIGHT make a minute difference in the amount of fuel it burns.  Might be more, might be less.  Regardless, the difference would likely be immeasurable.

Now - if we are discussing using premium fuel for the purpose of making more power (and we are), then the only choice we have is to attempt to burn the same amount of fuel more efficiently.  Using science as a basis for our reasoning, since the rate of burn for premium fuel is slower, there are ONLY two possible ways to achieve our goal.  First, we can compress our fuel mixture tighter, making it a more potent "bomb" for the explosion, which in turn will push the top of the piston down harder and thereby make more power.  Notice I use the term "bomb", which is accurate.  The "fire" doesn't make the power, it's the shock wave produced by the mixture of gases.  Regardless, to do this, we have to increase the compression ratio of the combustion chamber.  And we are obviously not doing that by simply switching grades at the pump.

Secondly, we can change our ignition profile to allow the new fuel to burn more evenly.  We will advance the timing to allow the spark to start earlier, and the duration of the burn will be greater and stronger, and thereby produce a better bomb.  But again, we are not doing this by simply switching which pump we put in our tank.

So, using premium fuel as the ONLY variable to make more power is mule fritters, period.

Switching to the second concern - using premium fuel to get better fuel mileage.  Once again, better fuel mileage would mean that the motor is running more efficiently.  For an equal volume of fuel and air mixture placed in the combustion chamber each cycle, somehow a higher octane fuel would burn it more efficiently.  This is not possible solely from the increased octane rating.

Finally, considering the third concern - using premium fuel makes the motor run better, and again, using science as a basis for the discussion, THIS one has the most credibility.  But not from the increased octane.  It would be from the additives, namely any detergents, cleaning agents, and more specifically, any de-carbonizing agents that the premium fuel has v/s the regular fuel.  Using the fuel to remove these deposits, especially around the ring grooves, the piston grooves, the valve seats, valve stems, and the tops of the pistons - this could make the combustion chamber and the exhaust profile more efficient than it was before, and thereby might make the motor run a bit better.  These additives may also do a little bit of a cleaning through the carb jets, passages, etc.

But those kind of changes would not be realized after burning one tank of fuel.  And they probably wouldn't be realized anywhere near the numbers indicated above.  This part is subjective, though.  We don't know what the additives are.

And certainly, proving it empirically would be nearly impossible.  Proving (or disproving) a power increase would be simple - use a dyno or even a day at the drag strip (although less accurate than the dyno) should settle that one easily.  But running a test over a long enough period to cancel out even the most extraneous factors in order to prove (or disprove) fuel efficiency - IMO, that one is nearly impossible.

I'm not trying to piss anyone off.  If burning more expensive gas makes you feel better, than it's a small price to pay (until the motor carbons up).  But don't make assumptions for matters of science with a feeling.  There's plenty of snake oil out there without fanning the flames (pun intended).


(Important disclaimer) - in making this comparison, I am only considering the change in octane rating, which is really the only thing I know.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: Placebo or Real? 87 or 92 octane
« on: August 26, 2017, 09:18:17 AM »
MrF and I are fishing in the same hole.  Scientifically and chemically, the higher octane (which is defined as the fuel's rate of burn) in of itself is useless for an internal combustion motor with compression and timing fixed to factory specifications to run on a lower octane fuel.  If we all assume that no one has altered the compression ratio of their nighthawk motor (shaving the head, using different pistons, and/or using a thinner head gasket), then the only way the change in octane (by itself) could be actually realized (conceived or not) would be if some extraneous factor was altering the timing on the motor, and thereby causing pre-ignition ping (knocking).  Understanding the concepts of the NH's ignition system - it's hard for me to fathom how that could happen.

That is it, and it's not debatable.

Now - do the additives make a difference?  I'm not sure.  Detergents, de-carbonizing agents, stabilizers, etc.????  There are way too many variables to make an educated opinion.  But my gut tells me that it's doubtful.

On the other hand, there is science that suggest that running higher octane fuel (which has a slower rate of burn) for extended periods of time on a motor that is NOT designed to run on that fuel, could INDEED cause motor damage.  If the fuel burns slower, it doesn't burn completely (or less completely) before it's pushed out of the exhaust valve.  Unburned fuel that is heated and cooled over and over again turns into a carbon deposit.  Heat treating that carbon deposit thousands (or millions) of times heat treats it and it becomes harder than the surrounding metal.  When those deposits form on the valve seats, over time, bad things can happen.

Now - fuel manufacturers use additives to counter the effect described above.  Techron is an excellent detergent to try and dissolve or dislodge those carbon deposits and send them to the catalytic converter or just out the pipe.  But either way, you are wasting money, IMO.

IMNSHO, running high octane fuel in a nighthawk is buying snake oil, plain and simple.

Your Ride Reports / Re: 2017 Black Hills Rally - Sturgis without Sturgis
« on: August 20, 2017, 10:17:31 AM »
Well done, Tim.  That tour is on my bucket list, but I can't tell when I will get that way.

Who's got the 2005 FJR?  Brings back memories.....

Your Ride Reports / Re: Mississippi River Run
« on: August 14, 2017, 11:06:56 AM »
I'm really thinking that my 2018 big bike tour is going to be a Huck Finn Ole Man River adventure.  This lends credence to that idea!!

Thanks for sharing.

Stablemates / Re: After 11 years, I got a new bike.
« on: August 14, 2017, 11:02:56 AM »
That's developing new muscle memory to fuel injection v/s carbs.  Your brain was conditioned to actually apply throttle a split instant before you actually want it because it knows that with carbs, there will be a slight delay.  No you have to untrain your brain.

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My '96 CB750 "Dragon Bike"
« on: August 14, 2017, 11:00:32 AM »
That's a beautiful bike.  I had one just like it with many of the same modifications you have done.  I don't really miss it, though.  I didn't have too much sentimental feeling for the '96.

On the other hand, I miss my '84 RWB 700s a LOT.

Your Ride Reports / Re: I Went To The Edge
« on: August 09, 2017, 06:35:03 AM »
That would be an affirmative H/D, my friend.

At my age, my football humping days are long gone....

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: CB750 page at Wikipedia
« on: August 08, 2017, 06:23:53 AM »
I would agree with the Dragon, the '91-'03 is so reliable, any miniscule differences in power (if there are any, and I don't think there are) are hardly worth debating.  The suspension on the US version of the late model was a bit lacking, but with a set of aftermarket progressive springs, a fork brace, fork oil to match the rider's taste, and a set of progressive shocks, that problem is totally solved.  You could do the washer mod on the slides to address the low throttle lean condition.  There's not much you can do about the drum brake, although it is pretty effective for what it is.

A 12 year run with only color and engine finish changes, even for a Japanese bike, is very telling.  Honda did it right, they slam dunked the marketing strategy, and the price point, and it paid off in spades.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: CB750 page at Wikipedia
« on: August 06, 2017, 02:20:59 PM »
Yes - the '91-'03 750

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: CB750 page at Wikipedia
« on: August 06, 2017, 12:38:20 PM »
Although not exactly what you have asked, I can comment on the 700s v/s the late model DOHC 750.  I've had both and put plenty of miles on each.  I've also found a way back country road with a mile of so of clean straight pavement, and I may (or may not) have hooked up with a friend on the other bike.  I may (or may not) have done this with my 700s v/s the late model and with my late model v/s the 700s.

The two bikes are so close in power, it's hardly worth mentioning.  The 700s has hotter cams, and revs a bit higher than the late model 750.  At about 6,000 rpm, she really wakes up and pulls hard to the redline.  But the 750 has better low end torque, and it's chain drive eliminates two power robbing 90 degree turns in route to the rear wheel.

I can tell you unequivocally that these bikes are equal in power on the street.

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