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Discussion Starter #1
It amazes me how our 500lbs bike can peg 90mph with a one piston 400 cube.
A cruiser requires a 750cc to perform the same thing with the same weight.

How is the scooter engine set up different?
 

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It amazes me how our 500lbs bike can peg 90mph with a one piston 400 cube.
A cruiser requires a 750cc to perform the same thing with the same weight.

How is the scooter engine set up different?
What cruiser are you referring to? I have kept up with motorcycles pretty well over the years and even the doggie Yamaha 750 Virago would hit the other side of 100 mph. I am pretty sure all of them can go more than 90 mph. Some of them a whole lot more.

And there are plenty of 600 CC bikes than can hit 90 MPH and still have 60 MPH in reserve. Not that I would ever need it or want it to be sure! ;)
 

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Chappy it's not the engine it's the CVT that optimizes the machine.

That said a 400 thumper has lots of power and the CVT makes good use of it.

A CB400 Four will pull your eyeballs out when the Vtech kicks in.

Typically with the smaller CC you have to the thrash the tranny more....that goes away with the CVT.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Most cruisers peg around 100mph give or take... What will a 400c V Twin cruiser do?
 

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Chappy,
By the way where did you get the idea most cruisers peg around 100mph. I was riding in excess of 100, often on my ole 1971 Yamaha RD400 back in the day. Yeah it is 400cc but cruiser it was not. Dang used to set my cruise at 145 on my K1200RS when I thought I could get away with it. Even my R1200RT would do over 120mph. But I personally would not call any 400cc motorcycle a cruiser. You also ask about 400cc V Twins... Heck how many companies offer a 400cc V Twin anyway? Man just enjoy what you have.
 

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Chappy,
By the way where did you get the idea most cruisers peg around 100mph. I was riding in excess of 100, often on my ole 1971 Yamaha RD400 back in the day.
Might want to check your memory here. In 1971 Yamaha did not have the RD400 but they did make the R5 350 which would later morph into the RD 350 and then later in 1976 into the RD400. I had an R5 as well as four RD400's and what sweet machines they all were.
 

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Yeah, your right it was a 1977, Orange and Black with my first mag wheels on a motorcycle. Back then the Daytona Special is the one I always wanted. Man time flys. Where did it all go... to fun for me. Celebrated 50 years of riding this past Feb.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Men...You are talking about 4 cylinder engine bikes mostly. I'm talking about V TWIN lunker's...Suzuki maurauder, kawasaki vulcan, honda shadow etc...Yes's they hit a 100 mph (some barely) maybe a little more, but it has twice the engine capacity at 750-800cc etc...

Our's can do 90mph with a single cylinder, so there is a little magic there somehow.
 

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I get what you're going after Chappy and agree.

My 650 can flog most HDs with 1800cc engines, or at least keep up with them. And I think to myself, "are they THAT bad, or is the burg THAT good?". Some of both I would guess. I just don't see the need for those big as. Engines.

There is something to the cvt argument. A well managed power delivery system can easily add the performance of an extra 100ccs in the block on the low end and probably 200cc or more with larger engines, in comparison to traditional manual set ups. IMHO.
 

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You are talking about 4 cylinder engine bikes mostly.
RD400s which were fabulous is a twin. Number of cyclinders is not all that significant. State of tuning is very important.

A 6-660 cc can be anywhere from a tame thumper like my KLR650 to a CBR660RR which will scare the bejesus out any sane person.

The "magic" for your machine is the CVT not the motor.
 

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I would say it is partly the motor and partly the CVT. A well setup CVT can improve the apparent performance of a given engine. But any engine configuration can be tuned to produce high performance or low performance. A stock Harley V-Twin is a low-performance engine. A stock Ducati V-twin is a high performance engine.

The engines in most cruisers are tuned more like a truck engine. They are set up to produce high torque at low rpm. That allows you to put the bike in high gear and slow way down then speed back up without having to downshift. On the flip side they do not rev real high and the torque curve does not go up dramatically as rpm increases. As a result they do not produce a lot of peak horsepower relative to their size.

Horsepower is calculated as torque times RPM divided by 5252. That means to increase horsepower you have to increase either torque or RPM or both. High performance engines typically do not produce much torque at low rpm. But they spin a whole lot faster and the torque curve goes up as rpm increases. That lets them produce more peak horsepower. But you can't slow them way down and speed back up without downshifting.

If you compare the horsepower curve of the typical 1800 cc V-twin cruiser to the typical 600 cc sport bike you will see the cruiser produces more HP at low rpm and the sport bike produces more HP at high rpm. The sport bike will probably produce more peak HP than the cruiser too.

The engine in our scoots is somewhere between. It is tuned higher than the typical cruiser but not as high as the typical sport bike.
 

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It amazes me how our 500lbs bike can peg 90mph with a one piston 400 cube.
A cruiser requires a 750cc to perform the same thing with the same weight.

How is the scooter engine set up different?
The engines are designed for a very different role. The 400 has to spin fast to perform well (look at the 600 cc high performance crotch rockets that turn at 14,000 RPMs). The cruiser V-twins make a lot of torque at a low RPM level as that is what cruiser customers want. In addition to My Burgman 650, I have a V-Star 650 that I also like. I ride it very differently that I do my Burgman. I can ride around in high gear from about 30-35 MPH. The low speed torque is great on the V-twins while there is very little on the Burgman until it is spinning fast. My Burgman is my main ride but there is no substitute for the sound and feel of a V-twin occasionally. I think the V-star tops our around 85 MPH due to the gearing while the Burgman 650 will go about 30 MPH faster.
 

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In some cases it is the rider - most cruiser riders weigh more than they should and some weigh more than the bike they are on!
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Great info men... That's what I like about you boys, you can roll with the next thread even if we bucked horns on the last one!:dmage:
 

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I recall my mother's Savage (650cc thumper) tops out around 95...it isn't limited by power, but it hits redline in high gear. (Which, now that I think about it, is the same thing that limits the AN400's top end...)
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
There are many riders to tell you their bikes Top out by computer,( yes sport bikes ) most likely on a V TWIN it's topped out by the valve size and intake size!

Uh uh uh uh, she shuts off at 110... No,no no no... she don't shut off, she strangles off!! ( been there wore the T shirt)

Kawasaki Concorse 1k same engine as Ninja...Ninja has 40mm carbs, concourse has 36mm carbs. That's how they control speed. ( marketing to wanna bees?)

My buddy has a Honda VTX 1800, top speed 120mph according to Honda, they installed tiny valves and strangled intake to regulate this bike!

So if I can do 90mph with one piston at 400cc, why do I need 1800cc to go 120mph ????

Fill me in men, I'm a naive Englishman needing education.
 

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so if a 500lb 400cc scooter can do 90mph and people buy it then why not a cruiser built the same way? i would think the manual transmission would get better mpg like in a car or is that diffrent?:confused:
 

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So if I can do 90mph with one piston at 400cc, why do I need 1800cc to go 120mph ????.
The quote I've heard is, "if you have to ask the question, you won't understand the answer". To paraphrase a movie line from Mo' Better Blues, " it's a d.ck thing". There's no logic to it other than people think it cool and it sells.

Mechanically, the engine is probably limited because other parts of the bike can't handle any more speed... frame, bearings, suspension and such. They don't want one part of the bike over stressing the other parts. That's a lawsuit just waiting to happen.

In short, MCs are more than just speed and the most effective way to get there. People buy bikes for different reasons, and the manufacturers are just trying to optimize making a buck giving the people what they want.
 

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To add more mud to the disussion, the Burgman 650's engine is more like a cruiser engine, with good low-end torque, but the standard E-CVT is configured not to use any of that torque, but to gear down whenever you twist the throttle.
Only the redesigned 2013 and forward allow you to use below 3k RPM and generally ride with less RPM vs. speed. As a result, the reported MPG's are better than the previous models.
 
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