I have had many motorbikes over the years and I love riding a bike. NOTHING compares to a bike journey and the feeling of freedom it gives you, bikes really make me happy!!
Recently I have noticed that modern bikes are “strangled”. In other words, to comply with the ever rising Euro standards the bike must pass a series of tests and these involve mainly emissions and noise, so new bikes these days have very severe restrictions including catalysers and the rest. Therefore when I purchase a bike I generally change the air filter from the standard paper element to a high flow filter (BMC or K&N) and also fit an end can which allows the bike to breathe better and also saves loads of weight over the OEM can.
All big bikes today have plenty of power. In my opinion and experience, anything up to 100bhp I can handle and enjoy, anything over 100 horses is really for pub talk or for very fast, long distance travelling. My old Yamaha XJR1300 produced about 100 and I could really ride her hard, unfortunately then the fuel consumption dropped like a stone and fuel stops were required each 150 kilometers but hey such fun!! I had a fantastic trip down to the south coast of Spain on a much newer Yamaha FJR1300 and that makes 145 horses, the beauty of the FJR is that she holds a load of fuel (almost 25 litres) so fuel stops were much less frequent and the performance fantastic.
Now I am ready to make another step. I have been researching tuning with some interest. There are several ways to skin a cat (as they say) and I favour the ECU piggy back idea, in other words several companies mainly American (Power Commander) and Italian (Rapid Bike) sell ECUs which you can fit to your bike to try to eliminate some of the engine’s hesitation and low and medium revs. This hesitation is built in by the manufacturers to pass the noise tests and these “extra” ECUs enable you to dial out these glitches and make the engine run more smoothly.
NOT to have more horses but simply to improve the pull at low to medium revs which is where we generally ride a bike. I love the pull of my Honda CB1000R, she will set off in 2nd gear without needing to slip the clutch and then she will pootle along in 5th or 6th without snatching, this for me is the beauty of a large bike engine.
SO. I have recently purchased a Rapid Bike Easy for my Honda VFR1200F. I will fit this only when I have given the bike a full service so watch this space…….. STOP PRESS I just ordered a Rapid Bike Easy for the old CB1000R cos she is 2018 (out of warranty), she has 15k kms and she has a Leo Vince end can plus a BMC air filter so she is ready mmmm.