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Twins Technical Talk Technical Talk for Hinckley Triumph Twins: Bonneville, T100, Speedmaster, America, Thruxton, and Scrambler.

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Old 01-02-2013, 09:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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MPG going down during cold weather...

I've noticed a significant drop in my MPG during slightly colder weather here in Socal. Does everyone experience this, or is the cold weather showing how badly my bike isn't tuned properly? I've been messing with jet sizes for a while now, and while my performance and mpg has increased slightly from when I bought it (previous re-jet was a joke), I still haven't felt its been at its best. I haven't been able to bring it over to get dyno'd or analyzed, so I'm going mostly on feel and from reading threads here.

What say you?
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Old 01-02-2013, 09:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I know that if I ride infrequently and for only fairly short distances, as is often the case during winter, my MPG deteriorates.
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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My 96 Trophy 1200 would drop from 42 mpg to 35 mpg, summer vs winter. I rode more cautiously in the winter in Minnesota, so the drop in mpg from 70 degrees to 30 degrees F was the real deal. I won't take my Bonneville out in the ice and snow. My last ride on Dec 2 was in 45 degree weather. I got a few less miles on that tank, going from 180 to 165. My gas mileage always suffers due to my tendency to twist that throttle a bit aggressively.

I definitely see a drop in mileage due to cold weather. YMMV.
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Old 01-03-2013, 12:14 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Old 01-03-2013, 12:35 AM   #5 (permalink)
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It's not so much the cold weather - it's predominantly because of the winter fuel blend

On EFI bikes, they will also deliver more fuel with colder air.



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Old 01-03-2013, 09:13 AM   #6 (permalink)
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^ The winter fuel blend definately causes a drop in fuel mileage...also you probably warm your bike up for a longer period of time before jumping on to ride. I know I do when the temp's are in the 40's so that also is a contributing factor to a drop in fuel mileage...both factors are for me.

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Old 01-03-2013, 01:28 PM   #7 (permalink)
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LOL - cold weather in SoCal.


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Old 01-03-2013, 03:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I guess to folks in SoCal temp's in the upper 50's and 60's on a regular basis in the winter months is cold...dunno.

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Old 01-03-2013, 03:40 PM   #9 (permalink)
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A few excerpts taken from this article. Some you may have never thought about.

Lower average engine temperature
In the winter, an engine takes longer to reach operating temperature and cools off faster when shut off. Since the engine management system orders up a richer mixture when cold (proportionately more fuel in the air/fuel combination), more fuel is being burned overall.

Higher average lubricant viscosity
Engine oil thickens as it cools. So does transmission and differential fluids and even bearing grease. Significantly more energy is needed to overcome the added drag these cold lubricants cause. Using synthetic fluids can address this problem, since their viscosity changes less at extreme temperatures than traditional mineral fluids.

Weaker gasoline
Gasoline doesn't vaporize readily at very cold temperatures. So oil companies formulate fuel differently for cold-weather markets in the winter. Unfortunately, the changes that provide better cold vaporization characteristics also result in less available energy for combustion. You won't get as far on a liter of winter gas as you will on a liter of summer gas.

More aerodynamic drag
No, I'm not referring to the layer of snow you're too lazy to brush off the top of the car (though that would hurt mpg too).
A vehicle’s aerodynamic drag is proportional to air density, and the density increases as temperature drops. For every 10 degree F drop in temperature, aerodynamic drag increases by 2%
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Old 01-03-2013, 04:18 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I get better mpg in winter in (uk), no question.

I think it's mostly to do with me being gentler with the throttle on greasy roads, but I wondered if it also might have something to do with being able to get more oxygen into the engine for a given intake cycle (air is denser).

This may only be true for carburated engines, don't know.

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