Running out of gas is never fun and I would imagine less so on a motorcycle, especially if you find yourself in inclement weather. What could possibly be the reasoning/oversight behind this design flaw? Are you saying the gas gauge is faulty on all units of the same model number or that you were lucky enough to get a lemon?
My understanding is that all the fuel sending units in this model bike for several years have this problem and are virtually guaranteed to fail at some point. This bike came out in 2001. I have a 2005 with the same syle sending unit. My sending unit failed in 2008 and is still bad. I'm not sure what year they went to a new type of sending unit, perhaps when they went to the 5.2 gallon fuel tank around 2007?
I'm not sure I made it clear. My understanding is that the new style sending unit is improved and does NOT have this problem, BUT the new style sending unit is not compatible with the bikes frrom before the change. Are people with the preceeding model years just expected to have a non-functional gas gauge or scrap-out the otherwise beautiful bike?
This might not be such an issue if I didn't need to stop every 70 to 80 miles to make sure I don't run out of gas. That's a lot of short hops. (Even electric cars, that have been criticized for a short range, have more range than that.)
That's difficult, Dave. I live in a state (NM) that has long patches between gas stations. There are stretches when you can't even find a radio station, AM or FM for many miles at a time. You could easily find yourself stranded with such a short travel capacity.
I hear you. In 2006, I rode that motorcycle to my uncle's ranch at DeHaven, New Mexico (65 miles southwest of Clayton). With the nearest gas station 65 miles from that ranch, I didn't have the range to go from the gas station to the house and back to the gas station. For that trip, I had a 5 gallon jerry jug of gas in addition to my pack of clothes. (I'll send a photo.) I needed that extra fuel in New Mexico and on the Oklahoma Turnpike.
I also carried several quarts of H-D Synthetic 20W-50 Oil. Most service stations do not cover that need. At higher speeds out west, with higher RPM, I guess the oil blows by the rings to where it consumed about 1/2 quart every 700 miles or so.
On a positive note, the fuel injection did a wonderful job of compensating for the altitude changes. The horsepower of that bike was helpful merging into high speed traffic after short or inclined entrance ramps, or getting away from that one pack of wolves in Tennessee!
Wow. That's terrible you have to carry a spare tank of gas to get across those long rural patches. Interesting that the fuel injection is sophisticated while something as simple as a reasonably large fuel tank slipped through the cracks. Wolves in Tennessee, huh?
Yeah, who'd a thunk it! Just about 3 miles north of Piperton, TN near Shelby County (where you find Memphis), I had three big wolves making the pack move on me. I was doing about 35 mph on a 2 lane road through a marshy area. The 1st wolf ran in front of me causing me to hit the brakes to avoid hitting him. The 2nd wolf ran across behind me and nipped y rear tire (as if the bike had hamstrings I guess). The 3rd wolf was coming right at my side. A handful of throttle, with 120 horsepower on a bike, put them all behind me!!
My buddy, that I rode with when I lived in Collierville, TN, lives in Piperton, TN. He explained that the development in Shelby county was flushing the wildlife to the less desired real estate such as that marshy area. The wolves, a cougar, and a ferrel dog pack were being hunted to make the area safe again for the local residents (and their pets).
Cross-country motorcycle trips can offer all sorts of adventure. I also earned three "Iron Butt" endurance riding certifications, and helped my cousins branding cattle on that trip.
That's very surprising. Not a good time to run out of gas or have a chain problem. Must have been an unforgettable experience. I didn't know there were sill wolf populations in the wild in the United States.
I agree. Reliability is one thing when it sends you back to the shop for minor fixes, but it's another altogether when it puts you in a position where you're trying to calculate in your head how much fuel you have left. I've had cars that didn't have working fuel gauges, but the entire cars were worth about $100. In a $26K bike, that's not acceptable.
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