Question on Correct Gear - Honda RC51 Forum : RC51 Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 08-17-2015, 05:58 PM Thread Starter
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Question on Correct Gear

Friends, I have been riding my stock 2004 RC51 for about two months and 1200 miles. I have a question on the correct gear to use and the proper motor RPM.

I have found my RC51 runs best from 3000 RPM on up. Below that I can feel vibration and lugging. Now given I keep the speed at 65 MPH or less on my commute to work I do not get into 6th gear.

Does this sound proper? When I am in a 45 MPH speed zone I am in 4th gear at about 50 MPH.

I have also noticed the motorcycle runs better on pure 91 octane gasoline versus 93 octane with 10% ethanol. Do others have a similar experience?

One other thing, my RC51 does have a Power Commander reported to have been tuned by an expert(?).

Thank you for your comments.

Team FASTLIKEJUDY
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 08-17-2015, 08:13 PM
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Originally Posted by FASTLIKEJUDY View Post
Friends, I have been riding my stock 2004 RC51 for about two months and 1200 miles. I have a question on the correct gear to use and the proper motor RPM.

I have found my RC51 runs best from 3000 RPM on up. Below that I can feel vibration and lugging. Now given I keep the speed at 65 MPH or less on my commute to work I do not get into 6th gear.

Does this sound proper? When I am in a 45 MPH speed zone I am in 4th gear at about 50 MPH.

I have also noticed the motorcycle runs better on pure 91 octane gasoline versus 93 octane with 10% ethanol. Do others have a similar experience?

One other thing, my RC51 does have a Power Commander reported to have been tuned by an expert(?).

Thank you for your comments.

Team FASTLIKEJUDY
The RC51 likes to run above the 3,000 rpm. Do you run stock gearing? A lot of folks here run 15t in the front 42t rear (OEM 16/40)

Yes, 91 pure is better that any ethanol content. (I use a gas station close to me that sells 91 pure and run it in all of my engines. RC, Cub Cadet, Civic Si even my weed eater)



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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-23-2016, 04:06 PM
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I read on RC51.org that they mentioned a 42 in the rear without changing the front but it would probably move the rear tire too far forward with my 190/55. They also mentioned a 15T front and a 41T rear but I never saw mentioned a 15 front and 42 rear. Wouldn't that combination gear it too low for street use without it becoming a wheelie machine?? I'm thinking about going to the 15 and 41 but would like to hear from those who have already done it. I too am getting the lugging (mirrors bouncing) when at the normal cruise speed with the stock gearing on my 06. My 00 not so much though.

Thanks,

Nick

2000 RC51 - stock owned since new 5/2000
2006 RC51 - 2nd owner purchased 4/2015 with 1400 miles
1996 CBR900RR - mild resto/mod - done spring 2012
1990 Honda VFR - original stock owned since 1991
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-23-2016, 05:32 PM
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Get the revs up a bit.

-2001 Honda RC51 sp1 " Slightly Modified "
-2001 Honda 929RR Erion Edition
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-23-2016, 07:12 PM
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Get the revs up a bit.
I agree with you Matt. Not sure which would be better though. 15 front and 41 rear, 15 front 42 rear, or 42 year with a slightly longer chain so I can still run a 190/55. I just don't want it geared too low.

I've never varied from stock on gearing and I only want to do this once so I'd like some opinions from people who have already tried these combos.

2000 RC51 - stock owned since new 5/2000
2006 RC51 - 2nd owner purchased 4/2015 with 1400 miles
1996 CBR900RR - mild resto/mod - done spring 2012
1990 Honda VFR - original stock owned since 1991
1975 Kawasaki S3 - restored in 2004-5 (sold 10-17)
2003 Kawasaki ZX7R - bought 10/2018
2007 Honda Interceptor 25th Anniversary purchased 7/2014
1972 Honda Mini Trail - 1st restoration in 1992, and 2016 restored to like new condition. (sold 2/18)
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-23-2016, 07:13 PM
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I am ussually stil in first gear at 45mph
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-23-2016, 07:18 PM
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I am running a 15/40 OEM setup and am really good with it . I shift @ around +- 5K RPM and use Shell V-Power 91 with a PCIII and really have no issues . Oh yea run a 190/55 rear... Just my 2 cents

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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-23-2016, 07:29 PM
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For commuting, or just running around the city, I get better performance running around 4 to 5K rpms. Yes you use a tiny bit more fuel, but I believe it's better for the engine to get it closer to it's intended work rpm. This is no putt-putt bike, don't ride it like one.

I run 15/42 (-1/+2 ) sprockets, and ran a 190/55 for 4 years.
@Motleyfan is right about clearance issues. Although this combination does work on my SP1, it puts a new tire VERY close to the front of the swingarm. Only about 7-8 mm's clearance.



So I just added a link to my chain, that put the rear axle back in the normal range. Problem solved. Now I run a 200/55, with a Puig hugger too!

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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-23-2016, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by CapeCodderRC View Post
I am running a 15/40 OEM setup and am really good with it . I shift @ around +- 5K RPM and use Shell V-Power 91 with a PCIII and really have no issues . Oh yea run a 190/55 rear... Just my 2 cents
OEM setup is 16/40. I ran this and thought it was rather tall when I bought the bike in '04. Went 15 /40 but the chain guide suffers.
Now have a 15/42 and have yet to try it.
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-2001 Honda RC51 sp1 " Slightly Modified "
-2001 Honda 929RR Erion Edition
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-23-2016, 08:46 PM
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I'm currently running PCIII on 15/41 (-1/+1) sprockets with a 520 chain on 190/50 Michelin Pilot P3 & I love the feel of this set-up..
For me just feels like a good balance of throttle response/ torque, cruising RPM, lean in on curves, etc. allowing plenty of swingarm clearance..
Definitely better than stock set-up in my opinion.

JOE BLACK
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