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The carb is clean and has been rejetted. No rust in the tank. Nothing indicates issues with the engine. I also have a windshield, so that adds resistance.
windshields arent quite as bad as you might think for drag. remember, if it wasnt there it would be your upright body dragging the wind. The screen actually gives some assistance on an upright riding position.

But I must repeat, your bike is not right. Go back to basics and check all the jet sizes and needle type and position. something somewhere is wrong. Maybe valves are too tight? 800;s are weird in that almost always the valve adjustment gets tighter with wear, rather than looser. so the quieter the valves are, the more you should check them.
 

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Kawasaki VN800A (1995). Yamaha Raider (2008). Yamaha FZ1 (2006).
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I have to add my input here. I've owned my healthy and beloved vn800 since 2007. I bought it with 13,500 miles and it now has 47,000. I bought it as an upgrade to the en500. Being that I gained experience with different bikes since, I've come to realize that this bike is a slow as a snail cruiser. Sure it's great for street riding, but is sluggish and slow on the highway. I over rev the engine each time I need to switch lanes. If a car is about 30 feet behind me, I have to wait for that driver to pass before I switch lanes. Otherwise, I would risk cutting him off. The speedo reads higher in mileage than what i'm actually cruising at. Just monitor a gps. My 800 is 13 miles slower than what is actually displayed. I have reached over a 100 on my inaccurate speedo, but the engine was screaming for its life to the point where valves were about to blow. Now, I'm not saying that this bike was built with racing in mind, but it performs poorly on highway, regardless of any modification. I have vance and hines straight shots, grampsized air filter, and reduced sprocket teeth in the rear. I STILL can't catch up to my friend's 600 shadow. Just recently, I took a ride with my girlfriend around suburban roads. The bike was so slow going up minor hills that I couldn't even reach speed limit! Man, I'm sure the cars behind me were hating me. This is my advice, if you want to stay street legal and patiently let other cars pass before turning lanes while your rpms are screaming like crazy, then keep the Vulcan. If you want to take advantage of some power when you need it, then get another bike. That's what I just did. I would even recommend the vn1500 over this Fred Flintstone speed bike. My vn800 will now be my rain bike. It's too bad that when Kawasaki was imitating Harley's look, they couldn't imitate the engine with it.
I have ride 883 HD and 600 Shadow and from my experience, there is no way to compare with the VN800. VN800 will smoke both.
Check valve clearance, I just did it to mine and 6 of them were loose (they tend to go tight, but mine were loose). After clearance adjustment I felt like I have a new bike ..
What sprokets size do you have in both, front & rear? (I have 18th front and 46th rear)
Would be interesting to make a dyno test to see exactly your HP and TQ.
 

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I have jjust completed the first service (supposed to be the 800km Service) but got it done at 510kms. During the running in I had the bike up to 130kph. Not that I did 130 all the time, mostly I was running in around town at the recommended limits.

The bike should be able to do upward of 180kph, but I remind myself the legal limit around here on a fast road is 110kph more usually 100kph. Back home in the NT of Oz, 130kph

Have fun everyone and safe driving huh!

Roo

PS I just realised I have a 900 not an 800. Apologies guys.
 

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Now, I'm not saying that this bike was built with racing in mind, but it performs poorly on highway, regardless of any modification. I have vance and hines straight shots, grampsized air filter, and reduced sprocket teeth in the rear. I STILL can't catch up to my friend's 600 shadow. Just recently, I took a ride with my girlfriend around suburban roads. The bike was so slow going up minor hills that I couldn't even reach speed limit!
I've had my wife's up around 105 with no issue. Pulled nice and smooth the whole way through. Something is seriously wrong with your ride, man. Did you have any of these problems pre-mod? I discovered with my Magna that going back to stock engine parts was the key to getting the most power out of it. When I got it it had a K&N and open pipes with a DynoJet kit installed.

I ditched all of it and replaced with stock parts except for the mufflers (I couldn't get a reasonably priced set of replacements so got some universal slashcuts) and I upped the mains from 102's to 108's and added a shim under the needle. The bike runs better than ever now.

It is unfortunate to hear your bike is running so bad. While the VN800a cant touch my magna once the RPM's are up, it is still a damn quick bike.

Might be worth it to hit a shop to see if they can confirm everything is copacetic. If it is, maybe you just got a bum ride. :\
 

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I've had my vn800 for 7 years now. Prior to it, I had the en500. The en500 was much quicker, but did not have much power. I thought the vn800 was a monster until I got more experience with other machines. I have experience on the vn750 and 1500 and the 800 is just the worst. I keep reading different thoughts from many 800 owners, and most people claim that the rpms shoot far too high as if another gear is needed. You can read this on earlier posts in this thread. To try to eliminate this, I went with a 17/38 configuration of the sprockets. Now don't get me wrong, the Vulcan is a great street bike. However, I have to curse it's highway sluggishness. Anyway, the change in rpms to the new configuration is noticeable on a minor level. The engine itself is good and pulls off well. I don't know how to check for any performance problems unless I had another Vulcan 800 to compare it to. I'm simply basing my frustrations on the common consensus which is that this bike does not crack well above 70mph and its rpms rise too high way too quickly. And even that is inaccurate because the speedos are 10% higher than the actual reading.
 

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I've had my wife's up around 105 with no issue.
105 would actually be around 93 or 94 in actuality. I've had my 800 up that fast too, but the rpms would be insanely high. Most things are never meant to be pushed to the limit. Think of radio speakers. Would you turn the dial to its max? On that same sense, I would not want to push my engine that high again. Even if I do, it's too rough and loud for comfort.
 

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105 would actually be around 93 or 94 in actuality. I've had my 800 up that fast too, but the rpms would be insanely high. Most things are never meant to be pushed to the limit. Think of radio speakers. Would you turn the dial to its max? On that same sense, I would not want to push my engine that high again. Even if I do, it's too rough and loud for comfort.
I'm sure all the speedos read higher than actual speed, but your example seems a bit higher than normal. When compared to GPS mine is only off by 5mph at pretty much all speeds 40-90mph
 

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top speed on an 800

Took her up to 125 and then my brain :eek:and common sence cought up with me and I remembered what happened when I kissed the pavement doing only 60,and shut it down. Just......had to know for sure,ya know? :rolleyes:
But she'll run like a scalded cat ,for a mid size cruiser.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Well, it's been fun and summer is closer to being over than not, I don't cruise much more than 70-75 on the freeway which is okay I guess for a small bike. Anything more than that just starts to wobble so why push it. It's a great bike to enjoy learning on and great to have fun with but I think it's seriously time soon to invest in a bigger bike.
At 6ft, 250lbs. I feel like a giant on this bike and the pickup, like someone else mentioned, just stinks (or at least should be better in my opinion)
 

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I've had mine to 85 before, and I can cruise at 75 no trouble. I've had it to 75 in 3rd gear, so I know there's lots of speed available beyond what I've tried.
 

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I have to add my input here. I've owned my healthy and beloved vn800 since 2007. I bought it with 13,500 miles and it now has 47,000. I bought it as an upgrade to the en500. Being that I gained experience with different bikes since, I've come to realize that this bike is a slow as a snail cruiser. Sure it's great for street riding, but is sluggish and slow on the highway. I over rev the engine each time I need to switch lanes. If a car is about 30 feet behind me, I have to wait for that driver to pass before I switch lanes. Otherwise, I would risk cutting him off. The speedo reads higher in mileage than what i'm actually cruising at. Just monitor a gps. My 800 is 13 miles slower than what is actually displayed. I have reached over a 100 on my inaccurate speedo, but the engine was screaming for its life to the point where valves were about to blow. Now, I'm not saying that this bike was built with racing in mind, but it performs poorly on highway, regardless of any modification. I have vance and hines straight shots, grampsized air filter, and reduced sprocket teeth in the rear. I STILL can't catch up to my friend's 600 shadow. Just recently, I took a ride with my girlfriend around suburban roads. The bike was so slow going up minor hills that I couldn't even reach speed limit! Man, I'm sure the cars behind me were hating me. This is my advice, if you want to stay street legal and patiently let other cars pass before turning lanes while your rpms are screaming like crazy, then keep the Vulcan. If you want to take advantage of some power when you need it, then get another bike. That's what I just did. I would even recommend the vn1500 over this Fred Flintstone speed bike. My vn800 will now be my rain bike. It's too bad that when Kawasaki was imitating Harley's look, they couldn't imitate the engine with it.
Don't know what's wrong with your bike but I have ridden my Drifter since 2004. Made a couple of 2000+ round trip rides, and ridden with my son on his 1200 sportster. I can run almost side by side with his sporster up to 85-90 and then he starts pulling away and my bike is totally stoke except for having Harley mufflers.
 

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Stock 1999 Classic. 100 mph according to my satnav and there was some throttle left....

Oh yea... forgot to mention. The engine is a high revving type. Treat it like a dirty hore and she will be fine...lol...
This is the best thing ive read about these bikes easily. And the most truthful lol
 

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'05 800B
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140 km/h for me
 

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Gotta say. The reactions are mixed on everything ive done or have planned to do. Ive cleaned carb k&n filter no baffle stock pipes. Next is rejetting.
 

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2009 Vulcan 500
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I just recently bought a 2001 Vulcan Classic that, I've only been on the highway just a couple times. It seems as if I'm in fifth gear by the time I reach 60-65 but any more than that, it just seems like I'm over revving it. Kinda like there should have been another gear...
Is this normal, am I okay riding at 70 without worrying something is going to break? I want to ride it on a couple hundred mile trip but I just don't know if I would be okay.
I'm new to the Bike ownership and new to riding, so I was just wanting others who own this type bike, their input. Thanks.
4200 rpms at 70 mph...it will do that all day everyday.
The bike has a 2.6 inch stroke and is very comfortable at those rpms

Sent from my SM-A115U1 using Tapatalk
 

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I've had my vn800 for 7 years now. Prior to it, I had the en500. The en500 was much quicker, but did not have much power. I thought the vn800 was a monster until I got more experience with other machines. I have experience on the vn750 and 1500 and the 800 is just the worst. I keep reading different thoughts from many 800 owners, and most people claim that the rpms shoot far too high as if another gear is needed. You can read this on earlier posts in this thread. To try to eliminate this, I went with a 17/38 configuration of the sprockets. Now don't get me wrong, the Vulcan is a great street bike. However, I have to curse it's highway sluggishness. Anyway, the change in rpms to the new configuration is noticeable on a minor level. The engine itself is good and pulls off well. I don't know how to check for any performance problems unless I had another Vulcan 800 to compare it to. I'm simply basing my frustrations on the common consensus which is that this bike does not crack well above 70mph and its rpms rise too high way too quickly. And even that is inaccurate because the speedos are 10% higher than the actual reading.
Your gearing seems to be the problem from what I can tell. No wonder you can't keep up on the highway. My vn800 has the 18/40 and I can rip down the highway easy. Its damn near equal to my 75 shovel with the 3inch drive. It DEFINITELY takes off quicker than my shovel.... seriously man there is something wrong with your vn800....you still have stock emissions crap on it?
 
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