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View Poll Results: Do you prefer
A carburetor system 3 10.34%
EFI is the way to go 18 62.07%
Really don't care either works 8 27.59%
Voters: 29. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-11-2011, 09:24 AM   #21
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

To answer the question ... my first bike was carb. The second was FI. The third was carb and the current is FI.
I won't say that carbs are bad ... they aren't ... but I prefer FI. Fewer issues with gas and gumming and the throttle response, at least to me, seems smoother.
Plus ... have you ever heard of anyone reflashing their carb to get better performance? Sorry carbies ... rejetting doesn't give you the same thing that you can get by flashing or reprogramming your ECU.
The downside of EFI is that sometimes the manufacturer gets the map completely wrong ... case in point: Gen II FZ1's.
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Old 11-11-2011, 11:21 AM   #22
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

Quote:
Originally Posted by Desmo View Post
Could you imagine going back to carbs in cars. The Saturday rebuilds, the adjustments, the semi-functional automatic chokes? No thanks, I don't miss the good old days.
Don't have to imagine. My truck still touts a carb. 26 years old, I've only opened it once and it wasn't the problem I was trying to solve. I drive it about once/wk and it still meters pretty well as far as I can tell. Just have to prime it a few times before turning the key and it is just about as reliable as the car parked next to it in the garage that is 19 years its junior.

My bikes are one each carb and FI. The Shadow is a little grumpier about starting when it gets cold (doesn't help the 5 year old battery is showing signs of being done), but I ride the FI bike more as it gets colder anyway (more wind protection).

I do like FI for colder weather; less fast idle time and more efficient. But I won't throw the carbs out just for the sake of newer and shinier.
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Old 11-11-2011, 12:07 PM   #23
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

I have a feeling I wouldn't hate dealing with carbs as much as I do if I had a bike with less than 4 individual carbs.
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Old 11-11-2011, 12:19 PM   #24
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

I'm in the camp that street bikes are better off being FI while off road is better off being carbureted. When riding on the street you can get a lift, tow, whatever to get your bike moving on should it break down. If you're out in the middle of nowhere you want it to be as simple as possible and electronics make for more hassle.

I ride an FZ6 also and was looking for a bike with FI for the street. It's tested and works well, is efficient and has many benefits. You do have to balance or synchronize the throttle bodies just as you had to with multiple carburetors on any bike or car but it's still a fairly simple thing to do (I've done it myself on my FZ6).

It's also personal preference and I can't fault anyone for wanting to go either way.
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Old 11-11-2011, 12:29 PM   #25
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

I read Dirt Bike magazine and it seems to me that half the time they are extolling the virtues of FI and the next they are complaining about jerky throttle response and mapping issues with FI and recalling the benefits of carbs. I don't know but its appears that carbs are going away.
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Old 11-11-2011, 01:00 PM   #26
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

Eventually the government will mandate FI on all vehicles, on or off road. The EPA is a bunch of Sierra Club-types that likes to force things on folks regardless of cost, efficiency or common sense. Carb vehicles can run just as clean as FI vehicles but that doesn't matter to them. I remember the "smog" equipment mandated on California vehicles made them less efficient and ultimately added to pollution more than if it wasn't used. It's only a matter of time.
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Old 11-11-2011, 01:53 PM   #27
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

wait.....this isn't a tread about weight loss?


The only FI bike I've had was real "on/off" when at low RPMs, my carb fizzy on the other hand was butter smooth everywhere

and no you can't "flash" a carb, but you car rejet them. I'm pretty sure you can mod a carb bike just as much as any FI bike that you or I would be able to tell the difference
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Old 11-11-2011, 05:42 PM   #28
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

Carbs are a LOT easier to fix if you're stranded in the middle of nowhere with basic hand tools. Of course, with the electronic ignition systems on bikes nowadays, that stuff can fail too. I'd love to see an oldschool, carbureted, magneto-based kickstart bike these days for that reason.

Of course, if you are just staying in town and away from anywhere too remote, go for the EFI, it's great!
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Old 11-11-2011, 05:46 PM   #29
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

Carbs are mechanical. They work or they don't. You remove, you adjust, you replace a needle, float, jet or needle.
Fuel Injection, for those of use that are old enough, remember mechanical fuel injection. Sometimes, when working they were not to bad. But if you have a problem with the old GM or Bosch injection, better find a specialist and shell out some money.
Todays autos have computers that rival this PC I am typing on. When I left Cadillac in 2000, the Catera,(entry level Cadillac) had 12 computers on it. No I was not a fan, but more so because GM did not pay diag time. Our biggest problem at the time was communication between each computer. ABS to ECM to BCM to ACM ect. ect. My point is the power and fuel economy that fast electronic fuel injection provides will never be matched by any mechanical system. But are motorcycle electronics there yet. Obviously they are on BMW's, they have there stuff together. I like the FI on my 690r, you would never have been able to get me to believe I would like a 650 thumper this much. Have there been problems, not with mine, but others have reported fuel pumps, computer software problems, TPS sensor, air intake temp sensor problems. I guess my point is an electronic system can be great, but if cheaply done, it can be a mess. Try to find a motorcycle tech with an above average software mind. Many dealers are having to buy all the equipment to diag these systems, not BMW dealers, they have been rowing this boat for sometime. But all this equipment costs money and small dealers are struggling to keep up.
Just my 2 cents, sorry I took up, about $10.00 of your time.
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Old 11-13-2011, 12:39 PM   #30
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

I voted for EFI because it does a much better job of fuel delivery in all sorts of differnt conditions and different fuels.

However, from a reliability and cost perspective carbs are far superior. There is way to much to go wrong with EFI and who has a lap top in there tank bag to trouble shoot it on the side of the road/trail? Not to mention the cost! I just replaced a fuel pump in a Kawasaki Mule that the customer had gotten a little water, $600 just for the pump!!!! Thats outrageous!
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Old 11-13-2011, 02:56 PM   #31
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

Reliability?

A friend bought a FI bike a few months ago, let it sit in his garage until recently, and asked me to help him get it started. The battery was flat, and I was afraid the fuel was jelled up.

So I grab a couple bags of tools/supplies, and prepare for the worst. A few minutes on a battery charger, topping up the tank, along with one of the cleaner additives, and the bike purred to life with the press of a button.

Usually a carb'd bike will require at least a bit of fiddling.
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Old 11-14-2011, 10:55 AM   #32
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

I bought my 2002 Bandit 1200S thinking air cooled and carbs, what could be simpler. That was before ethanol was added to gasoline and I started working out of the country. No matter how much Stabil/Techron/SeaFoam you put in the gas tank the carbs required cleaning when they hadn't been started in three months. A trip to Colorado with high elevation and the bike was traded in on the FJR. No more carbs for me.
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Old 11-15-2011, 10:59 PM   #33
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tchuck View Post
I bought my 2002 Bandit 1200S thinking air cooled and carbs, what could be simpler. That was before ethanol was added to gasoline and I started working out of the country. No matter how much Stabil/Techron/SeaFoam you put in the gas tank the carbs required cleaning when they hadn't been started in three months. A trip to Colorado with high elevation and the bike was traded in on the FJR. No more carbs for me.
Aah! The corn syrup additive hmmm never thought of that affecting the carbs like that . Great point though +1
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Old 11-16-2011, 08:42 AM   #34
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

I bought my first first EFI bike in 2005. I'm on my third one now with about 130,000 miles total riding for the 3 bikes and 82,000 on one of them. I've had zero EFI failures or problems. I couldn't say that about the carbs on bikes I owned before 2005.
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Old 11-16-2011, 10:42 AM   #35
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

I prefer the EFI. Two out of my three current rides are injected. My little Yamaha meters fuel well down here below 1000 feet altitude, and metered well in Colorado this past summer. I was camped at about 9,000 feet and rode over passes higher than 13,000 feet. No adjustment on my part was needed. Fuel economy riding in the thin air went way up. (75+ MPG) Power was off just a touch, but I think it would have been worse had it been running rich up there.

To get the same results on the carbed bike would require jetting and probably needle setting changes. It would also be guesswork without access to equipment to measure exhaust gasses and a dyno to track real output changes. Can it be done?? Sure! Meeting that challenge would give great satisfaction. Not having to fool with it and just enjoy the ride is pretty nice too.
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Old 11-16-2011, 11:39 AM   #36
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Re: Carbs or no Carbs

I like them both for different reasons.
FI gives that ever so handy one-button start when you've got to get to work.
Carbs are less prone to expensive failure.

FI requires a lot of sensors and such on the bike that are expensive to replace should they fail, and we all know that electronics do fail. Many times frequently.

FI does a better job of adjusting for climate/elevation changes than carbs can, but carbs only require minimal tools to repair.

I have a FI VFR and a carb'd GL1100. Neither one are working properly right now

My FI 4Runner won't start, but my carb'd Mustang purrs like a kitten after sitting for several years
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