Gas mileage stinks


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Subhunter76
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Gas mileage stinks

Postby Subhunter76 » Thu Jun 02, 2016 9:42 pm



Well I am surprised that the 1500 does not get better gas mileage in general, but pulling a hack at 80mph it just plain stinks. I took my new to me GL1500 aspencade with attached California sidecar down to New York City this past holiday weekend, filled up about 4.2 gal before I left, had almost 120 miles on it when I put another 4.2 into it. On the ride back home I stop keeping track and just watched the gauge go from F to E even quicker probably cause I was riding much faster. Not sure I will consider this my daily rider. Before you ask, I put a new air filter and fuel filter and I am running 93 gas in it.



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NVSB4
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby NVSB4 » Thu Jun 02, 2016 10:05 pm

I get about the same (32-33) with my '96 SE.
I too have changed all the filters, but reading some posts here, my next step is to try cleaning the carbs with some Seafoam.
If that doesn't do the job, a carb overhaul is probably in order.
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Aussie81Interstate
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby Aussie81Interstate » Thu Jun 02, 2016 10:37 pm

You have to have reasonable epxectations - pulling a sidecar and running at that speed - what did you optimally expect from it ?

I average 33 when on longer runs with no sidecar and running 65-70 most of the time - if I slow down to 60-65 mileage increases fair bit - more towards high 30's.

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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby WingAdmin » Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:39 pm

I get 45 running at 50-55 mph. 60 it drops to around 42, at 70 I'm down to 35. Pulling my trailer drops it much further, 70 mph with my trailer and I'm in the high 20's or low 30's.

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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby billbob » Fri Jun 03, 2016 12:21 am

I always get 37 to 42 gal. on my 98se ,now that is riding solo. :?

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Bluewaterhooker0
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby Bluewaterhooker0 » Fri Jun 03, 2016 3:49 am

WingAdmin wrote:I get 45 running at 50-55 mph. 60 it drops to around 42, at 70 I'm down to 35. Pulling my trailer drops it much further, 70 mph with my trailer and I'm in the high 20's or low 30's.


My experience exactly. Load and speed play a large factor regarding gas mileage. Also many short, repeated, starts and stops, over several days, produces my poorest mileage. In the low 30's. Ironically, my best mileage has been in the mountains, 45mpg. But my average mountain driving speed is probably only 35-45 mph. I generally run 89 non-ethenol gas. No need for high octane. Actually, you will probably get better mileage out of lower octane gas.

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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby dingdong » Fri Jun 03, 2016 7:48 am

28.6mpg at 80mph considering you are pulling a hack is actually pretty good mileage for any bike not just the 1500.
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby NVSB4 » Fri Jun 03, 2016 8:26 am

WingAdmin wrote:I get 45 running at 50-55 mph. 60 it drops to around 42, at 70 I'm down to 35. 4

In the Dallas Fort Worth area, we have city streets that are 50 mph, the highways in town are 65-70 and once you get out of town, there are some up to 85 mph.
Those are all the posted speed limits, not the "traffic flow". Around here, if you are doing less than 60 mph, you might as well have a target on your back.
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joeincalif
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby joeincalif » Fri Jun 03, 2016 8:37 am

I have owned 7 Gold Wings and I always get around 40 MPG. If I'm cursing nice and easy it can go up to 45 but 40 is about normal for me
Most people that I talk to that have trikes only get about 25 MPG, and once you go over 3000 RPM's it drops also. So your pulling a sidecar and running 80 MPH, the sidecar adds extra weight, more wind drag and another wheel on the ground so I would say your gas mileage is right for the conditions you have.
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby bstig60 » Fri Jun 03, 2016 9:02 am

I get 40+ on the average. Pulling my trailer drops it 3-4 MPG. My experience has been that if you keep the R's under 3k the mileage increases substantially. I live in the mountains and ride the twisties and high elevations a lot. Mileage is all about how you ride and the load you have on the bike. That goes for any vehicle.
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby flogger » Fri Jun 03, 2016 2:44 pm

80 MPH is the first problem, the sidecar is next... Judging by most replies it seems like you are in line with everyone else's MPG adjusting for 80 and a sidecar... if I drive like I'm in my Civic, I get in the upper 30s. If I drive like I'm in my vette it drops quickly to the lower 30s... but of course it is funner to drive like a vette...
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby salty1 » Fri Jun 03, 2016 3:43 pm

dingdong wrote:28.6mpg at 80mph considering you are pulling a hack is actually pretty good mileage for any bike not just the 1500.

DITTO! That hack not only adds additional weight that needs to be moved but also offers significant wind resistance, particularly at 80mph.

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Subhunter76
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby Subhunter76 » Fri Jun 03, 2016 6:50 pm

I also noticed In od gear it does not have a lot of power going up hill and I constantly have to downshift to 4th even when I going at a pretty good pace. Is that normal on these?

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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby Fiberthree » Fri Jun 03, 2016 7:04 pm

After reading about the 3000 RPM drop-off I decided to try to keep mine at or under that speed on my last trip to Las Vegas to visit my mom. I was really surprised when I did the calculations after the trip. 47 and 48 MPG! All I did was keep the speed down and let the impatient people pass me by. I'm now taking it a little slower on the freeways.
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby flogger » Fri Jun 03, 2016 7:46 pm

Fiberthree wrote:I'm now taking it a little slower on the freeways.

Hyper-miler, hehehehe...
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Bluewaterhooker0
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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby Bluewaterhooker0 » Fri Jun 03, 2016 9:05 pm

Subhunter76 wrote:I also noticed In od gear it does not have a lot of power going up hill and I constantly have to downshift to 4th even when I going at a pretty good pace. Is that normal on these?


I've never experienced a lack of power in any gear. But, I'm not dragging a sidecar, and the associated weight, wind resistance, and physical friction. If your bike seems to run well, in general, I would have to also point to the sidecar for the blame. Others haul trailers, and I've never read of power issues. But, a sidecar, and the geometrics of pushing/pulling a device off balance (not on center), may be a totally different load.

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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby spiralout » Fri Jun 03, 2016 11:51 pm

salty1 wrote:
dingdong wrote:28.6mpg at 80mph considering you are pulling a hack is actually pretty good mileage for any bike not just the 1500.

DITTO! That hack not only adds additional weight that needs to be moved but also offers significant wind resistance, particularly at 80mph.

+1

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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby spiralout » Sat Jun 04, 2016 12:02 am

Subhunter76 wrote:I also noticed In od gear it does not have a lot of power going up hill and I constantly have to downshift to 4th even when I going at a pretty good pace. Is that normal on these?

Nope, but like Mr. Tarpon and Snook said (sorry but that's what I think of when I think Tampa even though the name is bluewater :P ) I don't pull a sidecar. The gearing and torque of my 1500 are unlike any other bike I've owned. Hell, I roll through stop signs in 3rd gear a lot where most bikes would have needed shifting to 1st.

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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby Aussie81Interstate » Sat Jun 04, 2016 12:20 am

Torque is very enjoyable - pulling up the foot of our local blue mountains - a place called Lapstone Hill - my 1500 cruises on 90 kmph (posted limit) and pulls strongly when it downgrades to 70km/h - nearly always going over the speed limit before I realise it... :)

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Re: Gas mileage stinks

Postby FM-USA » Sat Jun 04, 2016 8:34 pm

You're getting what you are going to get.
Pushing more air, uses more fuel.
More weight, uses more fuel.
More speed, uses more fuel.
If you're using ethKRAPanol, you're going to get less fuel mileage. Regular gas has higher BTU's but it's not readily available.

Using OD [5h gear] with the 3 mentioned above you'll lucky to get 28-32 mpg.
Without changing anything try this. After topping off the tank use 4th gear only as top gear. Ride about 100 miles and top off and check your fuel use.
IF you get better mileage using 4th, think about using a lower diameter car tire on the rear.

SUGGESTION on fueling.
Set bike on the centerstand and fuel up to the air weep hole, it's just inside the filler neck right side. You'll be more consistent on mpg's.

Only other thought is, baffle the open mounting hardware... less drag.
We assume your rig is properly tuned, side car wheel is slightly toed in.

Other thoughts... At times I haul a large, heavy trailer. My mpgs are around 30 mpg doing 3,000 rpms in 5th.. In head winds it drops to 26-28 mpgs.


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