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    Senior Member ewcaron's Avatar
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    Default Reserve Tank

    I'm only getting about 110 mile before hitting my reserve. About 35 miles to the gal. I've resently did the 16000 mile mantainance including tune valves and plugs. I don't feel that I ride it to hard. What do you normaly hit and do you have any ideas that could improve this? Oh by the way it sound great no missing or back firing. Do you think the cab may be running rich?
    2004 1300s GOD GAVE US THE RIGHT TO RIDE THE HIGHWAYS AND BARE ARMS.

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    Senior Member heffly's Avatar
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    What do the spark plugs say?????? 110 per tank is BAD. I can run from full to reserve=3.6 gallons of fuel=42+- mpg. 155miles MOL. Corrected blah, blah
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    In general I am about 130ish when I hit reserve. More would be nice but my spark plugs look right and there are no visible leaks with stock air and jets. It runs good and I recently added glens af tool so more choke to start it.


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    Senior Member ClevelandRocks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewcaron View Post
    I'm only getting about 110 mile before hitting my reserve. About 35 miles to the gal. I've resently did the 16000 mile mantainance including tune valves and plugs. I don't feel that I ride it to hard. What do you normaly hit and do you have any ideas that could improve this? Oh by the way it sound great no missing or back firing. Do you think the cab may be running rich?
    Yeah, trade it for a Sportster. Did 140 miles on first tank today, never hit reserve, took 2.2 gal 89 octane to top off. That's 63.6 mpg for the mathematically challenged.

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    Senior Member Jon's1800VTXC's Avatar
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    you'd still be nothing but a poser on a Sportster though

    Quote Originally Posted by ClevelandRocks View Post
    Yeah, trade it for a Sportster. Did 140 miles on first tank today, never hit reserve, took 2.2 gal 89 octane to top off. That's 63.6 mpg for the mathematically challenged.
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    Junior Member VTX M'Boro's Avatar
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    Only being able to go 110 miles before hitting reserve is not good. Like Heffley mentioned I can go 155 miles before going to reserve, if not even a little further and I'm a little agressive with the acceleration. I get between 45 to 48mpg nearly everytime.

    You used the word "about 35mpg" but is that a guess or an average? Maybe your just not topping the tank off enough in order to go further. Having to rely on my odometer to know how much fuel I have, I calculate my mileage everytime plus it makes me appricate driving my VTX 1300 verses my car.
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    Like others said, pull the plugs and check them to see what they read. It appears that you are running rich. I just filled up yesterday and I hit reserve around 142. That last tank I rode pretty aggressively and with a newly installed windshield which is said to reduce MPG...

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    Senior Member Ironhorse17's Avatar
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    Mine an 02 c, get the light around 120.

    40 miles per gallon plus,

    Got to keep in consideration small tank and internal fuel pump.

    I ride with several other vtx 1800 models and when we fill up I am the one that has the lowest fuel up.

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    03 1800C3 - Mine's averaging ~35mpg right now. I suspect/hope thats because its still cold out and the stations haven't switched to the summer mixture just yet. Plus My morning ride in has been at an average temp of 28 degrees with an afternoon riding temp of ~50, which would chew up a little more fuel that usual.

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    CHANGE GAS BRANDS US A PREMIUM BRAND LIKE SHELL,SUNOCO, AMOCO, REGULAR THEY INCREASED MY RANGE TO OVER 155+ ON A TANK ON THE ROAD.

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    Senior Member Hondabilly's Avatar
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    Default Reserve fuel line

    It's actually not a "reserve tank" but rather a reserve fuel line, which sits a couple of centimeters lower in the tank than your main fuel line. Thus, it draws the remaining fuel in the bottom of the tank, after the level of liquid fuel is below the mouth of your main fuel line.
    BTW, as I have posted several times before, and I don't know if it's due to the way my F3 is tuned? Or whether it's because of the oil I'm using or the fuel additive I spike my gasoline with? Or, maybe it's simply because I'm such a skinny little feller (just 170 lbs.)?
    But, I consistently get at least 40 miles per gallon. On some long runs last summer, when I was cruising on county roads and state highways keeping it right around 60 mph, I got 46 on a gallon.
    Nobody can convince me that the VTX1800 doesn't have an efficient and sweet-running motor.
    Nobody.
    The VTX1800 is now 10-year-old technology. But it was a way ahead of its time.

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    Last edited by Hondabilly; 04-04-2012 at 08:19 PM.

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    Senior Member wp120470's Avatar
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    Trade it in on a sportster? Why would anyone in their right mind trade a VTX in on a sportser? That would be like trading Porsche for a Yugo. Why is it everthing has to be a Harley? Went 175 miles sunday with my VTX, one Shadow areo, and 2 road kings and a superglide. One of the road kings blew 3 fuses in 175 miles. Every 50 miles pulling over to fix a harley. No thanks. I like Harley's but I will Keep my VTX any day of the week. They are good to ride with if you like to strech your legs often. We will lay off your sportster if you lay off our VTX's. Deal?

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    Senior Member MotorMark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironhorse17 View Post
    Mine an 02 c, get the light around 120.

    40 miles per gallon plus,

    Got to keep in consideration small tank and internal fuel pump.

    I ride with several other vtx 1800 models and when we fill up I am the one that has the lowest fuel up.
    This is normal for me as well. Those of us with the internal fuel pumps are definitely at a disadvantage when it comes to miles per tank. I added a Roadhouse Shorty, fuel manager, and better air filter as well. The bike really does run a lot better than it did stock, but the tradeoff is a bit worse gas mileage. Last year on the Natchez Trace Parkway, where the speed limit is 50, I got 40 mpg. If I'm blasting it around town, it's easy to drop it to 30.
    2003 1800C, "The Black Pearl" Roadhouse Shorty, 200 Metzler, L & R 5" Forwards, Kury Skull Airbox, Rivco Risers, Ultimate Big Boy Set, Iso-Wings Front & Rear, Kury Highway Pegs, Kury Convex Mirrors w/Extended Stems, Iso-Grips, Memphis Shades Black Gradient Hellcat Windshield & Lowers, & LOADS Of Chrome

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    Senior Member Philscbx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewcaron View Post
    Do you think the cab may be running rich?
    Ahh, the only clue it's a 13x.
    Was going to post my info - but 18's is a totally different VTX.
    Last edited by Philscbx; 04-04-2012 at 09:41 AM.

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    Senior Member Ironhorse17's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Philscbx View Post
    Ahh, the only clue it's a 13x.
    Was going to post my info - but 18's is a totally different VTX.
    How about the picture of his bike in his post?

    Clue # 2.

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    Senior Member russman's Avatar
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    My 03 1800 c get 35 mpg hwy 30 in city and thats fine with me.
    It,s an 1800! One of the Most powerful v twins every made.
    get a smaller bike if you want better MPG.

    ( Why do i get the feeling that CR guy has already been kicked off the HD web sites and keeps trying to ram that inferior 883cc sportster down our throats.. on a HONDA site.)

    Love my VTX!

    Ride safe
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    Senior Member Philscbx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironhorse17 View Post
    How about the picture of his bike in his post? Clue # 2.
    Feature must be shut off, or seen not signed in.

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    Senior Member race66's Avatar
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    Silly sportster guy!!

    You need to brush up on your math. Your little 883 is smaller than one cylinder of an 1800. With half the motor you shoud get closer to twice the MPG.

    At 38mpg I get 60% of your mpg with TWICE the engine and about 150 more lbs of weight!!

    They gear those little fu<kers don't they? The sporty gets a little buzzzzzzy at 70+ mph. Poor little thing.
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    Senior Member CruZnMarine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewcaron View Post
    I'm only getting about 110 mile before hitting my reserve. About 35 miles to the gal. I've resently did the 16000 mile mantainance including tune valves and plugs. I don't feel that I ride it to hard. What do you normaly hit and do you have any ideas that could improve this? Oh by the way it sound great no missing or back firing. Do you think the cab may be running rich?
    I was getting to the 130 mile mark before I had to fill up on my 1300R. I do miss those days. KINDA....

    2003 VTX 1800C

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    Senior Member Harkon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by race66 View Post
    Silly sportster guy!!

    You need to brush up on your math. Your little 883 is smaller than one cylinder of an 1800. With half the motor you shoud get closer to twice the MPG.

    At 38mpg I get 60% of your mpg with TWICE the engine and about 150 more lbs of weight!!

    They gear those little fu<kers don't they? The sporty gets a little buzzzzzzy at 70+ mph. Poor little thing.

    It is cute as a button though, the 883 that is. My wife thought she might like one for running around town. Maybe in purple

    '02 1800C, V&H Big Shots, Kury Corsair intake, DeBadged, Desmogged, PCIII Dyno Tuned, Mustang seat, NDAna
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    Senior Member leroys73's Avatar
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    Default gas mileage

    I ride at 75-80, Honda odometer showing about 5 fast, with a windshield and usually some lugage on my 1300R and get with little to no wind near 40 Honda mpg. Jap bikes run about 4% off on the miles. Fighting a strong wind I get downwards of 30 to 33 at the same speed. As far as miles per tank that depends how full I stuff it. If I am filling on a down hill slope, holding the motorcycle vertical, and fill the tank to the middle of the neck (I don't do this if I am parking it) I can get up to 145 miles before reserve traveling at 75-80. Now, I have gone 168 miles before hitting reserve but that was with twisties, up and down hills with maybe 50 max mph and mostly slower. I get better mileage now then when it was new. 48K now.

    110 mile before reserve does not sound right unless you are throttle happy. The only real way to make a statement about mileage is to keep accuare records, miles traveled / gallons used for several tank fulls under similar conditions, then average them. Miles per tank full is not very useful for consumption measures. However, it is very important to know on an LD ride. That is why I keep a mental note of the wind conditions I am riding in. Always remember, you don't travel as far "real miles" as Honda miles. The odometer is about 4% off, maybe more.


    Now for the Harley lover: I have nothing against a person owning a Harley, each to their own. I like their looks and their sound. My 80 year old Uncle who inspired me with years of riding experience and a MSF instructor owns a real Harley, not 883, but uses his Goldwing for real touring, yes at 80. I could have bought a Harley but I wanted reliablity and shaft drive. On the open road I have only had one Harley pass me on my loaded VTX 1300R and stay ahead of my pace. He was not loaded for travel so he may have only been heading to the next town for another drink.
    Last edited by leroys73; 04-04-2012 at 05:31 PM.

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    Senior Member ewcaron's Avatar
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    I also check milage on every fill. But I was hitting 130 before reverse. Order my K&n filter so lets see if that helps. Used some sea foam today to help clean lines also.
    Quote Originally Posted by leroys73 View Post
    I ride at 75-80, Honda odometer showing about 5 fast, with a windshield and usually some lugage on my 1300R and get with little to no wind near 40 Honda mpg. Jap bikes run about 4% off on the miles. Fighting a strong wind I get downwards of 30 to 33 at the same speed. As far as miles per tank that depends how full I stuff it. If I am filling on a down hill slope, holding the motorcycle vertical, and fill the tank to the middle of the neck (I don't do this if I am parking it) I can get up to 145 miles before reserve traveling at 75-80. Now, I have gone 168 miles before hitting reserve but that was with twisties, up and down hills with maybe 50 max mph and mostly slower. I get better mileage now then when it was new. 48K now.

    110 mile before reserve does not sound right unless you are throttle happy. The only real way to make a statement about mileage is to keep accuare records, miles traveled / gallons used for several tank fulls under similar conditions, then average them. Miles per tank full is not very useful for consumption measures. However, it is very important to know on an LD ride. That is why I keep a mental note of the wind conditions I am riding in. Always remember, you don't travel as far "real miles" as Honda miles. The odometer is about 4% off, maybe more.


    Now for the Harley lover: I have nothing against a person owning a Harley, each to their own. I like their looks and their sound. My 80 year old Uncle who inspired me with years of riding experience and a MSF instructor owns a real Harley, not 883, but uses his Goldwing for real touring, yes at 80. I could have bought a Harley but I wanted reliablity and shaft drive. On the open road I have only had one Harley pass me on my loaded VTX 1300R and stay ahead of my pace. He was not loaded for travel so he may have only been heading to the next town for another drink.
    2004 1300s GOD GAVE US THE RIGHT TO RIDE THE HIGHWAYS AND BARE ARMS.

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    Senior Member Hans&Feet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ClevelandRocks View Post
    Yeah, trade it for a Sportster. Did 140 miles on first tank today, never hit reserve, took 2.2 gal 89 octane to top off. That's 63.6 mpg for the mathematically challenged.
    I got a good deal on a 1200C for my son, his gets in the 60's(mpg) almost all the time.
    He is 5'2" and 110 lbs, he scoots along pretty damn good!

    VTX--only dipped into 38-39 MPG when driving sustained speeds at true 80-85 MPH.
    Usually at 140-150 miles when low fuel detected on non-interstate roads.

    VTX miles (about 5% high, no correction)
    3/30 106.9 miles/2.02G = 52.92 mpg
    4/1 93.0 miles/2.07G = 44.92 mpg
    4/1 132.8 miles/2.73G = 48.64 mpg Tellico, TN
    4/1 114.5 miles/2.20G = 52.04 mpg Hiawassee,GA
    4/2 137.0 miles/2.63G = 52.09 mpg
    4/4 140.8 miles/2.96G = 47.56 mpg

    About 49.6 mpg, about 12.4 miles per quart, 6.2 miles per pint, 3.1 miles per half pint....
    I try to fill it up about the same everytime, best to average to get more realistic figure.
    I also occasionally add about 8oz of additive(at the house) that is not documented.
    I always get better mileage in the mountains, more so when headed downhill....
    Last edited by Hans&Feet; 04-05-2012 at 10:44 AM.
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    Seasoned Member VTX1300cnME's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prkuehn View Post
    In general I am about 130ish when I hit reserve. More would be nice but my spark plugs look right and there are no visible leaks with stock air and jets. It runs good and I recently added glens af tool so more choke to start it.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    There are a few people here that say you should do this so you can avoid using choke to start the bike. This is incorrect. The system is there for a reason, if you bypass it, your just effing up other parts of the carb function (albeit very minorly, it's still not "right" )

    If you want to be running correctly, you should need choke on cold mornings to at least get the bike started. Ideally you should fire the bike with choke, then be able to immediately slowly push it back in while using the throttle to keep the bike running. By essentially editing out the enricher/choke/"whatever you want to call it" system you are making your bike run heavier (fuel wise) in other areas (like when it's warmed up, under load, etc).



    To the OP:

    110 is a little low for reserve. Do you do a lot of stop and go? Do you jackrabbit off the line every time? You ask if the carb is rich. . have you tweaked anything? Have you changed your stock setup at all?

    What about the fuel. Do you go to the same station every time? Is it maybe just the station you go to has bad fuel or additional additives the bike doesn't like?
    Last edited by VTX1300cnME; 04-05-2012 at 11:14 AM.
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    Senior Member lucky_1_chris_0613c's Avatar
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    You say you're getting 35 MPG, but hitting reserve at 110 miles. That doesn't add up. By the time you hit reserve you should be able to get close to 4 gallons in to top it off... How much fuel does it take for you to top it off when you hit reserve? Check your petcock. As the tank gets low there is less pressure at the petcock, and if the petcock is on its way out the lower pressure may not be letting fuel flow properly causing the bike to act like its running out of gas. The reserve tube is lower, so there is more pressure at the reserve tube. A switch to reserve would temporarily relieve the problem in this scenario. This is all assuming you're actually getting 35 MPG. 35 MPG isn't great, but that's about what I used to get on my 13. A failing petcock can also cause a drop in fuel mileage.
    Last edited by lucky_1_chris_0613c; 04-09-2012 at 03:29 AM.

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    Senior Member ewcaron's Avatar
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    You may be right and I thought that 8 months ago. It was stalling and acting like it was out of gas at 87 miles, I used 4 ounces of SEA Foam and it brought it up to the 110 but would get from 38 to 48 miles per gallon depending on temp and the way I was riding. I used Sea Foam again this last tank full and went to 38mpg and hit reserve at 129.5. Fill up took 3.51 gal. I rode for 5 miles before fillup. So am thinking it still hit reserve a couple of tenths early. Petcock or line from petcock clogged or bad? Sea Foam definitely helped. May do one more tank full. Do you think 87 oct. to low or go 89?
    Quote Originally Posted by lucky_1_chris_0613c View Post
    You say you're getting 35 MPG, but hitting reserve at 110 miles. That doesn't add up. By the time you hit reserve you should be able to get close to 4 gallons in to top it off... How much fuel does it take for you to top it off when you hit reserve? Check your petcock. As the tank gets low there is less pressure at the petcock, and if the petcock is on its way out the lower pressure may not be letting fuel flow properly causing the bike to act like its running out of gas. The reserve tube is lower, so there is more pressure at the reserve tube. A switch to reserve would temporarily relieve the problem in this scenario. This is all assuming you're actually getting 35 MPG. 35 MPG isn't great, but that's about what I used to get on my 13. A failing petcock can also cause a drop in fuel mileage.
    Last edited by ewcaron; 04-09-2012 at 08:26 PM.
    2004 1300s GOD GAVE US THE RIGHT TO RIDE THE HIGHWAYS AND BARE ARMS.

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    Senior Member lucky_1_chris_0613c's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewcaron View Post
    You may be right and I thought that 8 months ago. It was stalling and acting like it was out of gas at 87 miles, I used 4 ounces of SEA Foam and it brought it up to the 110 but would get from 38 to 48 miles per gallon depending on temp and the way I was riding. I used Sea Foam again this last tank full and went to 38mpg and hit reserve at 129.5. Fill up took 3.51 gal. I rode for 5 miles before fillup. So am thinking it still hit reserve a couple of tenths early. Petcock or line from petcock clogged or bad? Sea Foam definitely helped. May do one more tank full. Do you think 87 oct. to low or go 89?
    The diaphragm in the petcock wears and it starts to lose some vacuum. You can get a petcock rebuild kit online in the $25 range. They're pretty simple to rebuild...4 screws and swap out the rubber and plastic pieces. Maybe check the vac line to the petcock for cracks/leaks, too. I think the general consensus is to stick with 87 octane. Good luck hunting down the problem. I hope its something simple like this.

    '99 Valkyrie Interstate

    '06 1300C gone, but not forgotten.

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