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cruising RPM in gear

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by anomalous, Aug 11, 2010.

  1. Hey folks, im new to inline 4's, having just moved up from a vtr250 to an '08 cb600f

    after coming from the v-twin, the revviness and closely spaced gears of the cb600 have me wondering exactly what rpm i should be sitting on while cruising around in everyday traffic. ive asked a couple of people, and received quite different answers - anywhere between 2.5k and 6k. Im talking cruising at, say, 60 and 80km/hr - the two main speed zones i encounter on my way to work.

    the bike redlines at 13k, so while 6k sounds very high to me, perhaps it isnt, relatively speaking.


    i'm also finding the closely spaced gear ratios interesting - hard to tell what gear i'm in, and the cb lacks a gear indicator.

    any words of advice much appreciated


  2. On my brother's zx7r and both my zx9r and my fireblade I find that I'm usually around the 4k rpm mark when riding in normal traffic. As you start to rack up the km on your bike you will get to know what gear you are in based on speed and rpm, no need for a gear indicator.
  3. I keep mine reving around where the power starts to get reasonable so that I can speed up quickly if I need to without having to worry about changing gears. That's 5-6k on my Ninja 250, which has a redline of 14K. It starts to get quite loud and rattly at 7k if your not continuously accelerating so yeah, 5-6 for me the speeds you mentioned.
  4. Engines are most efficient and tend to feel happiest at their torque peak. Check where your bike makes peak torque and you'll generally find that that is the sweet spot.
  5. My fz1's peak torque is at 8250 rpm.

    I prefer to trundle around at about 4-5k in town.
  6. My recently departed GSXR750 was around 5-6000rpm but now I have the torquey Triumph, I sit around 3-4500. Bags of grunt and less shifting too. Love it.
    Problem I found with the GSXR was to ride in the funspace where the power was I'd be about double the speed limit!
  7. I'm finding that the cb600f seems to be happiest at 4k or above. below that, if you aren't on the throttle, it sounds a bit rough and lumpy. at 4k this roughness has smoothed out, even if you aren't accelerating.

    any other cb600f riders out there find this also?


  8. Lol, disagree :p

    My bikes max torque is around 9000rpm. But cruising revs 3000-4000.

    For your bike I'd guess 3500-5000-ish for cruising speeds, but you need to know how to sheeeeefffffttt by feeeeeeeel :tantrum: so if you go to throttle on and theres no power there/engine bogging down, you know you were in too high of a gear - learn from that.
  9. I'm kinda used to that - my previous bike was a vtr250 with no tacho - which was actually great to learn to do exactly that.

    the cb is just such a different motor tho. found a power/torque curve on the net:


    that plateau starting at 4k seems to correspond to where the bike seems happiest to cruise. below 4 and the engine sounds distinctly unhappy, and doesnt respond so well. above 5.5k and it wants to go into warp drive. tho i wonder what causes the odd dip in the torque curve at 6k...
  10. Theres your answer! Cruise at 10200 rpm :p Peak torques!
  11. This is something I've been meaning to ask for a while. Most places you find information on torque or power, they don't actually have graphs but simply type the information. For example, a VTR250:

    Power 23.9 kW (32.1 hp)@10500 rpm
    Torque 23.5 N·m (17.3 ft·lb)@8500 rpm

    Probably a silly question, but this basically means the peak of the torque graph would be 23.5 N·m at 8500 rpm, yeh?

    Now the thing is, I have to flog the crap out of my VTR250 to get close to 8500, not really practical to rev it that hard in the city. Even then I can only really do this in 2nd or 3rd gear, 8500 rpm in 4th would be way over the speed limit.

    The other question I had was, does changing gear affect torque/power at all? Are there different graphs for each gear, or does the one graph apply to all gears?
  12. It depends on what you're trying to achieve. In traffic I want my bike to be responsive so I run a gear or two lower than what I normally would when loping along. What that means for your bike is different to mine.
  13. Its generally the same in all gears, but also bear in mind thats a graph for wide open throttle accelerations. Just ride where it feels "right" on my VTR i used to cruise around at 3-4k rpm. Basically i would be sitting in top gear most of the time at anything over 50km/h, just chugging along.
  14. I've got a 250 hornet and I ride at 14,000rpm on the twisties :D Still gets me 5L/100km hehe
    Not sure if that's great for the engine...

    In normal traffic Around 8-9k...the 250cc inline 4's don't have much go:\
  15. As long as you're inside the redline most of the time and do regular oil changes (preferably at maybe half the manual's recommended interval) it won't do any immediate harm.

    Neglect of oil and coolant maintenance will kill an engine far more swiftly and comprehensively than mere thrashing will manage. Apart from cejay's SV650 IIRC :D.
  16. I've got the exact same problem as you mate. Coming from a Ninja 250R and now CBR600RR I have no clue how to ride this thing.
    in a 60 zone I do about 4500rpm in 3rd gear and 4th at 80.
    As to my fuel effeciency thread, maybe I'm not getting the kms due to cruising at the wrong gear and RPM?
  17. Most likely a combo of emissions and noise testing. They do that at half of max power rpm's... which is... yes! 6,000rpm!

    As for cruising, the 'peak torque' thing is confusing to people and totally untrue. Can the guy that posted that please modify their post? Basically you want to be running the engine fast enough so that it doesn't run roughly or lag, but not so fast that its overrevving or intrusive. This will vary from bike to bike, but for a modern inline four then expect somewhere between 4 and 6k rpm.

    My GSX1100 will sit on 3k all day, and cruising around town at 2500rpm is easily doable. Then you take it up past 6k and rocket towards the 9k redline...WOOOO-HOOO! :D

    - boingk
  18. That'd be me, and I stand by my assertion that it represents a sweet spot, although I'll admit that, if the engine is a rev-monster, it isn't necessarily practical for normal cruising.

    Otherwise just pick a point where the bike feels happy, isn't offensively noisy and, if you're in or around traffic, will give you at least some get up and go without having to drop a gear or two. It's really a feel thing.
  19. Peak torque is (probably) the most efficient spot in terms of fuel used per Nm, but it is not where the engine has the best fuel economy (fuel used per distance).

    Generally speaking, the higher the engine is revving, the faster it uses fuel. However, this is by no means a linear relationship, nor is it particularly predictable.

    The best fuel economy will be a low enough RPM such that the engine isn't gulping fuel, but high enough (lower gear) to have enough torque at the rear wheel, such that the engine can comfortably hold itself against air resistance and running friction.