How much engine breaking is to much? - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 07:23 AM Thread Starter
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How much engine breaking is to much?

Me and my brother when out riding the other day. when we were coming down to stop sigh at the bottom of the hill, I rev match down shifted from third to second gear going around 35 to 40 mph. I hit the down shift flawlessly and began to engine break all the way down to the stop sign. during this time my engine seam to give off a high pitch hum from the high RPM ( i do not have tac on the bike so i don't know how high the rev were). apparently the hum was even loader behind me was my brother informed me after the ride. he said i did down shift at too high of a speed, and that i could damage the engine by doing that. what is your opinion?

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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Urzu 070 View Post
Me and my brother when out riding the other day. when we were coming down to stop sigh at the bottom of the hill, I rev match down shifted from third to second gear going around 35 to 40 mph. I hit the down shift flawlessly and began to engine break all the way down to the stop sign. during this time my engine seam to give off a high pitch hum from the high RPM ( i do not have tac on the bike so i don't know how high the rev were). apparently the hum was even loader behind me was my brother informed me after the ride. he said i did down shift at too high of a speed, and that i could damage the engine by doing that. what is your opinion?
damage yor engine? NOT.. yor motor is a big air pump. cept we put fuel in it and some sparks.. its bilt to handle the load going up and/or down.. you wont hurt yor motor, its capable of spinning that fast under accelerating load. deceleration is nada problem.
where you are pushing the boundaries is that the tires mite not want to slow quite that fast and you could loose some bite in the road, aka skid = not good.
So when using your engine to brake, its best to roll off the throttle and step it down one gear at a time shedding speed incrementaly. going down steep grades this is the proper method to remain in a lower gear and just let the motor w/ throttle off control the speed below posted numbers. If you need to apply brakes to slow then down shift to yet another lower gear and let the motor keep yor speed in check.. the motor can handle the rpms just fine. it will not hurt it. poncho




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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 11:25 AM
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It's not going to hurt anything, though you can over-rev it. Rev limiters are "one way". They won't protect you from over-revving during deceleration.

I call into question the necessity. Engine braking doesn't exist to help you stop better; that's a sheer misunderstanding of the bikes physics. The engine is only capable of slowing the rear wheel, and the rear brake is capable of locking the rear wheel up, so you can't "add" any more braking force then you have traction for.

You could engine brake to save wear or brakes, but the real reason people engine brake is to put the engine at an optimum RPM range for acceleration, like engine braking before a corner, holding a high RPM through the corner then powering out. If you're just coming to a stop sign spinning the engine up to redline? You might not break anything but it sounds pretty unnecessary, to me. Just my $0.02! It's not accomplishing anything your rear brake can't do better and with more control. Engine braking is just pre-empting acceleration. It's also useful for maintaining speed down a hill without needing to ride the brakes. I have a steep, long hill before my house on a 20mph road. Both car and bike are just left in a low gear, throttle at idle, and they roll down that hill at 20mph without any brakes! But again, not sure what ringing it's neck just to come to a stop at a stop sign is accomplishing.

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-27-2015, 09:55 AM
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If you let the clutch out too fast you can lock up the rear wheel temporarily on hard down shifting. Like Roman said it is more about adjusting to the correct gear for the speed than braking.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-15-2015, 09:17 PM
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Shouldn't hurt anything, I do it just to hear the awesome pops from the V&H he he!
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-19-2015, 04:44 AM
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Engine braking is really only ideal for long hill descents, where being in the right gear can make life much more pleasant.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-19-2015, 12:13 PM
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It is cheaper to replace brake pad than drive train components, just my opinion


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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-19-2015, 10:36 PM
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Engine braking by itself probably won't damage your bike, but remember that any vehicles behind you won't see brake lights and may not realize that you are slowing or stopping. Severe damage could ensue.

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2015, 02:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Romans5.8 View Post
It's not going to hurt anything, though you can over-rev it. Rev limiters are "one way". They won't protect you from over-revving during deceleration.

I call into question the necessity. Engine braking doesn't exist to help you stop better; that's a sheer misunderstanding of the bikes physics. The engine is only capable of slowing the rear wheel, and the rear brake is capable of locking the rear wheel up, so you can't "add" any more braking force then you have traction for.

You could engine brake to save wear or brakes, but the real reason people engine brake is to put the engine at an optimum RPM range for acceleration, like engine braking before a corner, holding a high RPM through the corner then powering out. If you're just coming to a stop sign spinning the engine up to redline? You might not break anything but it sounds pretty unnecessary, to me. Just my $0.02! It's not accomplishing anything your rear brake can't do better and with more control. Engine braking is just pre-empting acceleration. It's also useful for maintaining speed down a hill without needing to ride the brakes. I have a steep, long hill before my house on a 20mph road. Both car and bike are just left in a low gear, throttle at idle, and they roll down that hill at 20mph without any brakes! But again, not sure what ringing it's neck just to come to a stop at a stop sign is accomplishing.
Okay Romans I gotta call you out on this one. I have been through Missouri a half a dozen times and the biggest steepest hill I ever saw was an Interstate overpass.

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2015, 08:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TS Tinker View Post
Okay Romans I gotta call you out on this one. I have been through Missouri a half a dozen times and the biggest steepest hill I ever saw was an Interstate overpass.
Next time get off the interstate! And check out the Ozarks! It's not the rockies but there are hills!

My point in that post was more about typical stopping, not holding speed. i.e., descending a mountain road is different than coming to a stop at a red light. There's nothing wrong with engine braking, of course. I just don't think that it's all that necessary in day to day riding. Provided you are always in the appropriate gear, engine braking or not, either way I think you'll be fine.

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