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Old 03-28-2013, 08:00 PM   #21
sarnali2
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I have to say Ken, the whole "only" 80 hp deal is a red herring. That's more than enough to get you down the road quickly as you pointed out. Very few people are using much more than that on any bike no matter what they think. 140 or 150 HP @ 12k RPM on a litre bike is basically useless because you're not going to get there on the street without some pretty serious risk to life and limb.

Most of the bikes I've owned have been around 100 hp or less and I've still managed to reach some pretty staggering speeds on the street, the rest is just bragging rights at Starbucks. Unless you're on the track you're just not getting into the area of the powerband that's generating that kind of power. If you are you'd better keep your life insurance up to date, your rellies will need it to plant you.
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Old 03-28-2013, 10:31 PM   #22
The_AirHawk
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Originally Posted by sarnali2 View Post
I have to say Ken, the whole "only" 80 hp deal is a red herring. That's more than enough to get you down the road quickly as you pointed out. Very few people are using much more than that on any bike no matter what they think. 140 or 150 HP @ 12k RPM on a litre bike is basically useless because you're not going to get there on the street without some pretty serious risk to life and limb.

Most of the bikes I've owned have been around 100 hp or less and I've still managed to reach some pretty staggering speeds on the street, the rest is just bragging rights at Starbucks. Unless you're on the track you're just not getting into the area of the powerband that's generating that kind of power. If you are you'd better keep your life insurance up to date, your rellies will need it to plant you.
I've never owned a bike with over 100hp, myself.

NOT that I've never RIDDEN one of those eyeball-flattening sumbiotchez (and would do it again, just offer me a ride on your open-class an' I'll be off down the highway!) - I just never really had the urge to own that much power/weight ratio available at the flick of my right wrist.

Man's gotta know his Limitations.....

HOWEVER, I have owned cars with stupid-idiotic-moronic amounts of power, that the only reason they could not get out of their own way was because they were (literally!) busy destroying sections of asphalt (gaddam but the Monett street dept. must have hated my frakkin' guts during my late teens!).
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:31 AM   #23
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Enjoy your new engine cycle!

Email a few pics to me and I'll post them for you since our strange and bizarre picture posting regimen seems to elude you.
Thanks Buzz! I sent you some shots of a few "Easter Eggs"...little unexpected features that you only find after going over the bike in detail.
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:38 AM   #24
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I have to say Ken, the whole "only" 80 hp deal is a red herring. That's more than enough to get you down the road quickly as you pointed out. Very few people are using much more than that on any bike no matter what they think. 140 or 150 HP @ 12k RPM on a litre bike is basically useless because you're not going to get there on the street without some pretty serious risk to life and limb.

Most of the bikes I've owned have been around 100 hp or less and I've still managed to reach some pretty staggering speeds on the street, the rest is just bragging rights at Starbucks. Unless you're on the track you're just not getting into the area of the powerband that's generating that kind of power. If you are you'd better keep your life insurance up to date, your rellies will need it to plant you.
So true. The VFR had 110 hp, and it didn't rake long before I got nailed at 125mph. Barely missed impounding and jail. Last night I was trying to get the CB up over 5k revs on surface streets and aside from first gear I couldn't.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:16 AM   #25
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So true. The VFR had 110 hp, and it didn't rake long before I got nailed at 125mph. Barely missed impounding and jail. Last night I was trying to get the CB up over 5k revs on surface streets and aside from first gear I couldn't.
My Ducati GT1000 only had about 90hp and it was plenty quick, especially after I changed the countershaft sprocket.

The ear-splitting Termi pipes attracted plenty of attention too.
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:22 PM   #26
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I have to say Ken, the whole "only" 80 hp deal is a red herring. That's more than enough to get you down the road quickly as you pointed out. Very few people are using much more than that on any bike no matter what they think. 140 or 150 HP @ 12k RPM on a litre bike is basically useless because you're not going to get there on the street without some pretty serious risk to life and limb.

Most of the bikes I've owned have been around 100 hp or less and I've still managed to reach some pretty staggering speeds on the street, the rest is just bragging rights at Starbucks. Unless you're on the track you're just not getting into the area of the powerband that's generating that kind of power. If you are you'd better keep your life insurance up to date, your rellies will need it to plant you.
The Zooker air/oil cooled engines were real monsters. Yeah, they got maybe 95-100 rwhp but they had power and torque everywhere. Only in the fevered dreams of squids are the race replicas any faster in an urban environment. Ken's 1100 should have comparable performance. More than enough to get in trouble but with a stonking wide torque curve.
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:41 PM   #27
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Going from a DL1000 to a CB1100 feels like trading a Suburban for a Z-4. Both are great vehicles, but they’re totally different. The CB is far more compact, it’s shorter, lower, and the center of gravity is noticeably lower. Even getting on the bike is different, which is a good thing for me as I’m still recovering from breaking my hip. I doubt I could climb on a Vee right now; I can manage boarding the CB.

Sitting on the bike my feet are flat and my knees have a bend. With the Vee I could flat foot, but barely. The CB is very easy to pick up off the kickstand and balance. Again, that’s a very good thing for me at this point. Under way the ergonomics are upright for the upper body, and a “mid-bend” (between a sport bike and a cruiser) for the knees. Very little weight is on the hands or wrists. The seat has a nifty cover the likes of which I have not seen before. It’s grainy but smooth…which makes no sense, but it is. The foam underneath is quite firm, reminiscent of the seats in a Mercedes or BMW car. The seat is comfy for an hour, but much more than that I’ll be on the AirHawk (which fits nicely).

Pulling away, the bike is crisp and quick. It’s hard to say exactly yet because it’s still in break-in mode, but it feels like the performance is equal to the Vee. That makes sense given the horsepower to weight ratios of both bikes (about 80 for the CB, about 100 for the Vee). I think once the CB is broken in, it will be faster. I haven’t opened the throttle more than 2/3 as yet. The engine is much, much smoother than the Vee. That also makes sense since it has double the cylinders for virtually the same displacement; and it’s axiomatic that the more power pulses per rotation, the smoother the engine. There are absolutely no FI issues like flat spots, hesitation, etc. It makes the infamous FI problem with the Vee even more annoying; if Honda can meet EPA requirements without leaning the engine to death, why can’t Suzuki?

The forks are adjustable as the Vee was, the (two) rear shocks for compression with a tool. I left them in the factory setting, which feels quite tight but without being harsh. The bike corners beautifully; I’m far more confident on it in the curves than I ever was with the Vee. Maybe it’s just because it’s smaller and lower to the ground; but it feels like it’s on the proverbial rails. I’m no knee-dragger, but there are no chicken strips on the CB’s rear tire. If only we had more curves in South Florida…

The CB is geared low. You can get to fifth very quickly; running about 4500 rpm at 80. If I were planning a lot of touring on the bike, I’d look for a larger rear sprocket to drop highway RPMs. Obviously with no fairing or windscreen there’s a lot of wind pressure at highway speeds. I don’t mind that for day to day riding; having spent most of my riding career on standard or naked bikes. There is no aftermarket windscreen for it yet, and the way the handlebars and instruments are located generic handlebar mounted screens probably won’t work. Hopefully someone will come up with a screen for it soon.

The fuel mileage is a big question at this point. I picked the bike up “Full,” but the reserve warning started blinking at 105 miles. It’s a 3.9 gallon tank, so that would mean it’s only getting around 25mpg. I’m hoping that either the dealer put just enough gas in it to show “Full” on the gauge, or the engine is still very tight and using more gas than normal. I remember a big change for the better in the Vee’s engine performance when it hit 1k miles; perhaps the CB will be similar.

The esthetics of the bike are amazing. In the Honda video produced by the CB design team, they kept talking about how they “really worked on the details of this bike.” It’s very true. Many parts look like they are aftermarket upgrades; everything from the case covers to the foot levers are upscale. The frame tubes are huge…at least compared to what I remember from other cradle-frame bikes. The paint is as good as or better than what I’ve seen on any bike (short of a CVO Harley or full-on custom), including “obscure” parts like the frame and swing arm. The paint on the gas tank looks like its 20 layers deep. There’s a lot of chrome, including the fenders, the exhaust, fasteners, and a other parts. What isn’t painted or chromed is polished aluminum. There is very little plastic on the bike, just the side covers and a couple of small engine covers. Already thousands of virgin carnaubas have died to preserve this bike, many thousands more have yet to make the ultimate sacrifice. But they will, because they know their death will have meaning.

I’m very pleased with the CB and have zero buyers’ remorse. As I stated at the beginning, it’s as different from the Vee as it could be and still be a liter motorcycle. But I was ready for a change; the Vee was at its best touring, which I did at most 2 – 3 times a year. I’ll still be able to tour on the CB (not as comfortably), but I think my day to day riding will be a lot more fun.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:43 PM   #28
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The engine is much, much smoother than the Vee. That also makes sense since it has double the cylinders for virtually the same displacement; and it’s axiomatic that the more power pulses per rotation, the smoother the engine.
Well, my Sporty vibrates more than my Bandit, but the Bandit's four gives a higher frequency "buzz" that's annoying and numbing. The twin's lower-frequency vibration isn't at all unpleasant. It's not the vibration itself, but the nature of the vibration that's important. Sounds like the Honda four is OK in that department, though.


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The fuel mileage is a big question at this point. I picked the bike up “Full,” but the reserve warning started blinking at 105 miles. It’s a 3.9 gallon tank, so that would mean it’s only getting around 25mpg. I’m hoping that either the dealer put just enough gas in it to show “Full” on the gauge, or the engine is still very tight and using more gas than normal.
First thing I do with any bike is fill the tank, set the tripmeter to zero, ride it until either it hits reserve or the light comes on, then fill it up again. The tripmeter reading tells me my range, then divide the reading by the gallons of gas I just put in to get the mileage. Reset the tripmeter every fill-up. The fuel light is my redundancy. And my, do I love when I hit 50 mpg, with sh!tty ethanol, no less

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Already thousands of virgin carnaubas have died to preserve this bike, many thousands more have yet to make the ultimate sacrifice. But they will, because they know their death will have meaning.
I may be wrong, but I thought that EPA-mandated sh!tty paint needs to cure for a couple of months before you first wax it. Urban myth?

Excellent report!
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:57 PM   #29
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Well, my Sporty vibrates more than my Bandit, but the Bandit's four gives a higher frequency "buzz" that's annoying and numbing. The twin's lower-frequency vibration isn't at all unpleasant. It's not the vibration itself, but the nature of the vibration that's important. Sounds like the Honda four is OK in that department, though.




First thing I do with any bike is fill the tank, set the tripmeter to zero, ride it until either it hits reserve or the light comes on, then fill it up again. The tripmeter reading tells me my range, then divide the reading by the gallons of gas I just put in to get the mileage. Reset the tripmeter every fill-up. The fuel light is my redundancy. And my, do I love when I hit 50 mpg, with sh!tty ethanol, no less



I may be wrong, but I thought that EPA-mandated sh!tty paint needs to cure for a couple of months before you first wax it. Urban myth?

Excellent report!
I understand what you mean about the type or frequency of the vibes. I'm finding the CB vibe to be virtually non-existent.

Did just that with the trip meter!

I waxed the **** out of the Mini and the Vee right after I bought them, and both still have like-new paint jobs 5+ years later. Not even swirls...of course neither has been in a machine wash.
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Old 04-01-2013, 03:37 PM   #30
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I understand what you mean about the type or frequency of the vibes. I'm finding the CB vibe to be virtually non-existent.

Did just that with the trip meter!

I waxed the **** out of the Mini and the Vee right after I bought them, and both still have like-new paint jobs 5+ years later. Not even swirls...of course neither has been in a machine wash.
Putting a larger rear sprocket would make it even busier at highway speeds.

You got that one backwards. Pedal that bike in your garage and you'll see what I mean.
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