Vulcan 900 Gearing - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-29-2017, 06:59 PM Thread Starter
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Vulcan 900 Gearing

I'm new to the riding world and forum and have an odd question. Got a used 2011 Vulcan 900 Classic for my first bike last week that was well taken care of with only 2,700 miles. I've noticed that at 70mph in 5th seems to really keep the engine revved up, almost like it needs another gear. The dealer I purchased it from says it is nothing to worry about and that is normal. Just thought I'd ask those of you who have some experience if this is correct and if anyone has had any issues on long trips on the interstate. Many thanks ahead of time for your comments. Ride safe.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-29-2017, 07:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmorrellxlr8 View Post
I'm new to the riding world and forum and have an odd question. Got a used 2011 Vulcan 900 Classic for my first bike last week that was well taken care of with only 2,700 miles. I've noticed that at 70mph in 5th seems to really keep the engine revved up, almost like it needs another gear. The dealer I purchased it from says it is nothing to worry about and that is normal. Just thought I'd ask those of you who have some experience if this is correct and if anyone has had any issues on long trips on the interstate. Many thanks ahead of time for your comments. Ride safe.
lots of opinions on this,Yes to me it needs a 6th,is why I went to a nomad,but the 9 is a fantastic all around bike,there are sprocket or tire mods or both,some others will chime in,Hope this helps
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-29-2017, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by mmorrellxlr8 View Post
I'm new to the riding world and forum and have an odd question. Got a used 2011 Vulcan 900 Classic for my first bike last week that was well taken care of with only 2,700 miles. I've noticed that at 70mph in 5th seems to really keep the engine revved up, almost like it needs another gear. The dealer I purchased it from says it is nothing to worry about and that is normal. Just thought I'd ask those of you who have some experience if this is correct and if anyone has had any issues on long trips on the interstate. Many thanks ahead of time for your comments. Ride safe.
The 900 is what is called a short stroke motor. Meaning, it is designed to rev high compared to larger engines with longer strokes. This bike has a 7200 RPM redline, so it has a long range to run in. Yes, you can do things to drop the RPM's in final gear; but, I think that it takes away from the spunkiness this bike has. Don't be afraid to run up the rev's, engine has a rev limiter to keep it from over rev'ing. I run my bike at 70 MPH and it's happy there. Still room for more speed, too. I've had this bike upwards around 100 MPH. It just sings! Don't be afraid to ride like a bat outta hell, it was made for it!
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-30-2017, 06:31 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback. Much appreciated. Helps to confirm the sales guy at the dealership didn't get put in the "used car" sales guy category in my head! Stay safe out there.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-30-2017, 09:17 AM
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I think there's a bit of psychology at play here. The 900 looks like a big V-twin, so it seems like it should sound that way. It even does have a certain "potato, potato" sound at the low end of the range.

However, it's a mid-size v-twin*, with innards that look more like a sport bike engine. If the bike looked like a sport bike, I doubt anyone would be concerned about the "high" revs at highway speeds. At least, the pair of crotch rocket riders who do a red-line scream down the highway about 1/2 mile from my house every morning at 5:00AM don't seem concerned.

That said, I wouldn't be unhappy if I got on it today and discovered some mechanical wizard had added a sixth gear to the box.




* Heh. I'm old enough to remember when if I'd said a 900 cc motor was "mid-size", people would have thought I was nuts. As late as the 90's, the "heavyweight" market was 750cc and up.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 01:54 PM
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For me it was a perception change. I felt like it needed a higher gear for the first year due to the revs. The more I rode and read, I realized that it is just fine reving up that high. So I changed my ridding style. Quick out of first, ride 2nd to about 30ish, 3rd and 4th is where I will spend most of my time and then 5th after 65 or so. I have been getting used to the revs and not worrying about them.
I use 5th as the highway overdrive. 4th gear will be just fine at 50 all day. Buzzing dosen't bother me as I came from a KLR650. A single piston thumper on the freeway will teach you a lot about vibration.
One piece of advice that I have picked up from the good folks here it to ride and not worry. There is no hard set rule. This is a noisy buzzy bike, but for me I love ridding it so that is that.
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'08 Kawasaki KLR650 0 - 8,000 miles
'09 Kawasaki Vulcan Classic 900LT 16,000 - ????? miles
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 02:35 PM
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anytime I'm on the highway for any length of time, I think a 6 gear would be nice.
but i know its not a bad thing at all for the bike to ride highway speeds in 5th.

what I'd like, is a tach showing me where my redline is - but its a mental thing

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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-01-2017, 02:51 PM
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I kinda felt the same, even though I have a different bike, same idea where it felt like it needed another gear. Even my '82 LTD550 had 6 gears. Although now that I think about it, I did have to downshift on most any incline.

I was telling my brother, who is a mechanic, that on the highway I was running over 3,000 rpm most of the time. He said don't worry, it's designed that way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trainermb View Post
* Heh. I'm old enough to remember when if I'd said a 900 cc motor was "mid-size", people would have thought I was nuts. As late as the 90's, the "heavyweight" market was 750cc and up.
Me too, I remember when a 1,000cc was big. And they seemed adequate. I had to talk my way out of a speeding ticket while riding two up on my buddy's Suzuki 750. Of course I was trying to impress the girl on the back.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-20-2017, 01:10 PM
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there is a video on youtube where a guy talks about it and runs at 80 mph all day with no problem. but I do think Kawasaki will make some updates soon on the Vulcan 900 its been since 2006 with no big change. I guess that also shows how good it works.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-20-2017, 02:57 PM
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i have never looked for another gear more than i have on this bike. this winter i am doing at least one for the pulleys for sure
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