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  1. #1
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    Default Will Using 87 Octane impact performance?

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    Doing a 600 mile, many overnights, trip with our new (to us) 2013 Spyder ST/S the first of April. Wondering if using 87 Octane gas vs. 91 will change the performance during this trip. I think it was recommended either in owner manual or I picked up on the web to use 91. It will help on the money side a bit. Also this bike’s fuel gauge is off some. When it shows a half tank I put more than 3 gallons in to top off. Has anyone run into this with their gauge?

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    Very Active Member IdahoMtnSpyder's Avatar
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    May I kindly suggest you do a search here using key words like octane, regular, and premium. You'll read so many opinions and observations in every which direction you'll have just as much a question mark in your mind then as you do now. There is NO consensus as what is best, other than do what you are comfortable with yourself. I'll just say your engine can live with 87 octane.

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    Very Active Member Bfromla's Avatar
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    87 is minimum & ok; ethanol free harder to find & better. caution on topping off the tank, can kill the evap purge valve use trip meters will help let you know your average mpg gauge floats can stick ,hi or low side. Tank supposed to be 6gallon.

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    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bfromla View Post
    87 is minimum & ok; ethanol free harder to find & better. caution on topping off the tank, can kill the evap purge valve use trip meters will help let you know your average mpg gauge floats can stick ,hi or low side. Tank supposed to be 6gallon.
    about fixing the " Purge Valve " problem ..... I have pics in an Album I posted on my BIO page .... It is simple, in-expensive and it works ..... Mike

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    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IdahoMtnSpyder View Post
    May I kindly suggest you do a search here using key words like octane, regular, and premium. You'll read so many opinions and observations in every which direction you'll have just as much a question mark in your mind then as you do now. There is NO consensus as what is best, other than do what you are comfortable with yourself. I'll just say your engine can live with 87 octane.
    ... I had two V-twin engine Spyders ( like yours are ) .... I only used 87 w/ethyl , and they both ran great ..... I still use 87 w/ethyl in 1330 engine ... it works great ..... Mike

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    I run 87 octane when doing long trips on the highway and 91 for our local rides.
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    I just put in 87 last fill up as I read that it would be ok at low alt and not on hot days, we are only at about 400 feet here and was about 68 out. Went for about a 60 mile ride and stopped at a boat landing for a view. Leaving the parking lot it has a steep grade and I stopped at the top before entering the main road. On take off I got pre detonation pining for the first time since I got it. So it is back to 91 for me.
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    Very Active Member ARtraveler's Avatar
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    Bottom line...your Spyder (any year) will run just fine on 87 with or without 10% ethanol.

    The efi system adjusts and unless you are an astute mechanic, most will not notice any difference.

    I and others speak from experience. I have used it in all my machines from 2011 and up. I still do. No issues, no mechanical glitches.

    As IdahoMtnSpyder suggests, there are many posts and threads about this very subject.

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    Similar happened to me after using 91. I filled up with 87 and I experienced some pre donations on standing take-offs from stops. The computer takes a while to adjust to the change in octane. No big deal. Just don't goose it for a while after switching from 91 to 87. Not to worry, they'll both work fine in your stock 1330.

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    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shardt View Post
    I just put in 87 last fill up as I read that it would be ok at low alt and not on hot days, we are only at about 400 feet here and was about 68 out. Went for about a 60 mile ride and stopped at a boat landing for a view. Leaving the parking lot it has a steep grade and I stopped at the top before entering the main road. On take off I got pre detonation pining for the first time since I got it. So it is back to 91 for me.
    If you are having " pinging " ( and I doubt it ) ... there is something wrong with your Spyder !!!, and it needs to be fixed.... " shouldn't drive it on HOT days " ( with 87 0ct. ) Baloney ,,, I have driven my 14 RT at 115-F with no issues .... I'm sure folks in Az. do it on a regular basis. .... good luck .... Mike
    Last edited by BLUEKNIGHT911; 03-27-2022 at 05:45 PM.

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    My 10 cents worth.
    I always used 98 (Australia), sometimes 95, never had a problem.
    I decided to go to 91 after reading posts here.
    I started to get 'hesitating' and slight surging. I was riding into a head wind and put it down to that On the return journey I had the same situation with a following wind. I was low on fuel.
    I topped up with 98, within a few k's the bike smoothed out and ran well. No more problems.
    Just my experience.
    Baz

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    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BazF View Post
    My 10 cents worth.
    I always used 98 (Australia), sometimes 95, never had a problem.
    I decided to go to 91 after reading posts here.
    I started to get 'hesitating' and slight surging. I was riding into a head wind and put it down to that On the return journey I had the same situation with a following wind. I was low on fuel.
    I topped up with 98, within a few k's the bike smoothed out and ran well. No more problems.
    Just my experience.
    Baz
    You do realize , your Octane values are measured differently than in the U.S. ...... justsayin ..... Mike

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    Active Member teninospyder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLUEKNIGHT911 View Post
    If you are having " pinging " ( and I doubt it ) ... there is something wrong with your Spyder !!!, and it needs to be fixed.... " shouldn't drive it on HOT days " ( with 87 0ct. ) Baloney ,,, I have driven my 14 RT at 115-F with no issues .... I'm sure folks in Az. do it on a regular basis. .... good luck .... Mike
    I agree with BK and most others. 50000 miles+ total now on our 2014 RTL, running on nothing but regular since probably 15000 miles (when I didn't know better) . Country roads, hills and valleys, mountain peak runs, ocean salt air, No issues at all, except for more money in my pocket now to use for next ride !!
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    Active Member Schreckftw's Avatar
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    From what I notice, a lot depends on your riding style. You will not hear the knocking in a newer engine as stated in this chat. Your Spyder will adjust the timing etc. to compensate. The 1330 is high compression and if your riding style lands you in the 29-34+ MPG camp I would say you are not going to notice. If however your average MPG is around 22-24 because of an aggressive riding style then you might notice a slight performance downgrade. There is only so much spark and timing it can compensate for.
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    Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie Peter Aawen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BazF View Post
    My 10 cents worth.
    I always used 98 (Australia), sometimes 95, never had a problem.
    I decided to go to 91 after reading posts here.
    I started to get 'hesitating' and slight surging. I was riding into a head wind and put it down to that On the return journey I had the same situation with a following wind. I was low on fuel.
    I topped up with 98, within a few k's the bike smoothed out and ran well. No more problems.
    Just my experience.
    Baz
    I can certainly identify with that experience, Baz! . I've had similar experience here in South Oz, so I generally run 95 or 98 - altho I do find I get the best fuel economy on 95, especially in those instances the distance travelled will make that a significant concern... and maybe not quite to the same extent as most of WA, but we do still have a lot of those loooong gaps between servos! . Sure, I can run 91 if there's no alternative, but if I do then I REALLY hafta be careful & go lightly on the throttle or the engine'll knock like a dunny door blowing around in a Force 10 gale!

    I wonder if the clear degradation & knock issues that we see when running lower octane fuel here in Oz vs those having no issues when doing that in North America has something to do with our 'general ambient temperature' (are they that much different??) or is it for some other reason?

    And just for reference sake & the edification of those who may not be aware, our Fuel Octane rating here in Oz uses RON as opposed to the 'Average Knock Indicator = RON/MON ÷ 2 or whatever' method that's used in the States - so our 91 equates loosely to US 87; our 95 to US 91 (or is it 93??); & our 98 to US 95 - or there-abouts.
    Last edited by Peter Aawen; 04-06-2022 at 08:49 PM. Reason: Average Knock Indicator formula ;-)
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    Default Appreciate the insite all

    Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Schreckftw View Post
    From what I notice, a lot depends on your riding style. You will not hear the knocking in a newer engine as stated in this chat. Your Spyder will adjust the timing etc. to compensate. The 1330 is high compression and if your riding style lands you in the 29-34+ MPG camp I would say you are not going to notice. If however your average MPG is around 22-24 because of an aggressive riding style then you might notice a slight performance downgrade. There is only so much spark and timing it can compensate for.
    lets see if I got this right. so if I get like 20mpg on local street and 30 on freeway, I should stick to 91, correct?
    6 states down 42 states to go

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    It all comes down to the twist of the wrist. I've ridden for many years on many different machines both dirt, street, and track with a lot of different compadres. Simply put, the guys who have a gentle wrist have the highest MPG and the fewest amount of repairs, and the least injuries. The guys that are always jacking the throttle end with the most amount of injuries and repairs and the least amount of MPGs. It doesn't get any simpler than that. It's all the same whether you're running 87 or 91.

  19. #19
    Very Active Member IdahoMtnSpyder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka1004 View Post
    lets see if I got this right. so if I get like 20mpg on local street and 30 on freeway, I should stick to 91, correct?
    Not necessarily, IMO. I stick w/ 87 for city and highway ryding.

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  20. #20
    Active Member Schreckftw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka1004 View Post
    lets see if I got this right. so if I get like 20mpg on local street and 30 on freeway, I should stick to 91, correct?
    What I am saying is if the more aggressively you ride the more you will start to notice a difference. For example I normally ride very conservatively and I do not notice anything in the way of a misfire or sluggishness using 87. When however I am out with my sport bike friends trying to keep up (very very unsuccessfully) I will notice it. Those are the times my Pedal Commander is set to Sport 3 or even Sport+. I find I can feel and hear some misfire and feels a little sluggish when I rip the throttle. A higher Octane or 90 REC seems to feel better in those situations. I used the average MPG as a gage to identify aggressive vs more conservative riding is all.
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    Short answer is yes, it will affect performance. At least maximum performance. You might not notice.
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    Very Active Member bigbadbrucie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka1004 View Post
    lets see if I got this right. so if I get like 20mpg on local street and 30 on freeway, I should stick to 91, correct?
    AKA.....you have answers all over the place. From my thinking ��, I’d pay more attention to the ‘long term’ ryders....those who have been riding these units for years. For the most part, they KNOW what they’re talking about. jmho


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    I go hard to speed speed limit then easy up so it seems I should stick with 91.
    this is my 14th year with Spyder RS(2nd one now) and I know that acceleration is not the forte of Spyder but I would like to get what I can get.
    Last edited by aka1004; 04-01-2022 at 09:48 PM.
    6 states down 42 states to go

  24. #24
    SpyderLovers Ambassador Little Blue's Avatar
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    Default Octane 87 or 91? ?

    Quote Originally Posted by crtsteve55 View Post
    All
    Doing a 600 mile, many overnights, trip with our new (to us) 2013 Spyder ST/S the first of April. Wondering if using 87 Octane gas vs. 91 will change the performance during this trip. I think it was recommended either in owner manual or I picked up on the web to use 91. It will help on the money side a bit. Also this bike’s fuel gauge is off some. When it shows a half tank I put more than 3 gallons in to top off. Has anyone run into this with their gauge?
    The short answer.......NO.
    As others have already posted you get what you pay.

    Will a Spyder run on 87 octane....Yes.
    Ryde and Enjoy your Day. ......

    On the gauge thing.... most gauges are about 50% accurate.
    So just a heads up.
    ENJOY YOUR LIFE WITH A SPYDER
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    Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie Peter Aawen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Blue View Post
    ....
    On the gauge thing.... most gauges are about 50% accurate.
    So just a heads up.
    Just to expand a little on that - most of those gauges are within about 50% of accurate OR somewhat accurate 50% of the time.... But you'll never know which or when!


    This is basically due to the irregular shape of the tank & the location of the pump/sender in the tank, so while you might get a slight improvement in accuracy by installing or using a new/different/more accurate gauge, at best it's indication is only ever gonna be a somewhat vague indicator of what gas might be remaining in the tank!!


    So just like most of the rest of us, use your trip meter & fill up based on how far you've travelled since you last filled! . Just Reset a trip meter every time you fill up, do a few rough calculations to work out what your best & worst fuel economy might be so you can work out your average range on a tank of gas, then always try to fill up before you hit that worst case scenario!


    These engines & their fuel pumps/injector systems REALLY don't like running too low on gas, because the gas remaining in the tank serves as both lubricant & coolant for those fairly critical components. So ideally you'll ALWAYS keep at least a couple of quarts/litres remaining in the tank - any less gas than that remaining in the tank risks expensive damage to the pump &/or injector system, and even if you think you might've got away with it on that one time you ran your gas lower than that, you'll probably never really know until one day the fuel pump &/or engine craps out on you when you least want it to!!


    Don't rely on the gas gauge, and always aim to refill while there's still at least a couple of quarts/litres of gas remaining in the tank!
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