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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Troopers,

Long-time lurker, first time post...

I'm dropping into a new, '08 Wee today and want to squeeze all the value from this tremendous bike.

Along those lines, what octane rating do you chose when you fuel your v-stroms? 85? 87? 91? Those are my choices, and I'd like to understand what the sweet spot is for vehicle performance, fuel efficiency and reliability.

Sadly, I'm undereducated with respect to octane and its impact on the above, so your advice is much appreciated!
 

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The great thing about the Wee is that it runs on almost anything.
When you read your owners manual you will see a list from Suzuki that includes ethanol blends and all sorts of octanes.
Basically run it on the cheapest fuel you can get you will notice no difference in performance or reliability compared to running on higher octanes.
 

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You want to run 87 about 90% of the time, you might consider 89 when it gets REALLY HOT/humid out.
 

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If 85 is available in your area, it is the regular grade for your altitude. It will be fine unless you ride down to lower altitudes. The manual's 87 rating assumes lower altitudes. Octane ratings are often misunderstood. As long as the engine is not pinging, there is absolutely no benefit to running a higher octane fuel. If the engine starts making noises like it's shaking a tin can full of BBs, most likely when applying a lot of throttle while running fairly low rpms, then and only then will an octane boost help.
 

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Your engine is built to run on regular grade gasoline. If you are at an altitude where 85 octane is offered, that's regular in your area.

The only benefit you'll get out of running premium is that your bike may handle better in the twisties due to a lower total weight, because you won't have all that extra money in your wallet. :D

Actually, running premium in an engine designed for regular may, in fact, reduce power and lower your fuel economy slightly. There is no advantage to running a higher octane.

Always run what's recommended in your owners manual, on any bike.
 

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The thread title may be a bit misleading. What you want to know is what octane to use in your bike. All we flatlanders need a higher octane than you do. I use 87 around home but 85 when I ride in the mountains.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Very informative! Since I do live in Colorful Colorado, it sounds like 85 is the choice for me. That's a relief!

Thanks y'all. I really appreciate the prompt replies, and I look forward to learning more from this great website!
 

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I have a 650, and I tried premium two different times and noticed zero difference. So what I do is fill up w/ regular and pour a couple of ounces of lucas fuel treatment in each tank. I fell in love w/ this product after using it in my twin cyl. Kawasaki walk behind mowers. If you haven't tried this product, I don't think you'd be disappointed. It's totally different than every other product I've tried, it increases my mileage and has kept my motors amazingly clean internally. Just check out the viscosity of this stuff, it's pretty amazing for a fuel treatment. By the way, I don't work for lucas, I am merely a concerned sports fan.
 

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octane

Octane as an additive slows down the propogation of the flame front, and resists auto-ignition.
A higher octane #, is usually necessary in longer stroke engines.
Not always, as other design factors can come into play.
Choose your octane grade fuel based on being the minimum grade prior to "pinging". As you see, weather ,altitude, load , and operating habits, enter into the picture also.
It is true that higher octane #'s not needed, is a waste of money! USUALLY !
That said, most oil companies also introduce quality additives at the mid-grade levels. i.e. cleansers, upper cyl lub, anti rust, etc, that you do not get at in the low[est] grade, as part of their additive package.
Mid-grades will usually get you that "package" minus some octane.
Example:
I've got a guzzi that has "expensive tastes", a Honda ST11 that just does not care, and a BMW 1150 that runs well on puke gas only most of the time except for mid-summer..
ride safe, have fun
roadancer
 

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Hey there in Lyons. I'm down in Palmer Lake, lived in Lyons when my wife and I were first married. I have a 2003 Vee.

Living in Colorado lets us get by with the 85 octane for the most part. I run 87 every now and again, just to be different or recently when it's been so hot just as a "precaution". Never heard the bike knock or ping so 85 gets the nod most of the time.

On thing people don't realize is that 85 octane is relatively less expensive to produce than 87, 89, 91, etc. So while we pay a similar amount for each respective grade of gasoline as the rest of the country, the oil producers are making a higher profit.

The one advantage we have is the thinner air gives us a lot less wind resistance so we will get gas mileage that is as good or better than anywhere else.
 
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