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unleaded or super unleaded

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polisher
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PostPosted: 16:10 - 22 Sep 2012    Post subject: unleaded or super unleaded Reply with quote

hi guys
is there any difference in using normal unleaded to super unleaded?
benefits and disadvantages?
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doggone
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PostPosted: 16:19 - 22 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

One has the disadvantage of being more expensive.
It's unlikely any normal motorcycle would see any better performance by using it.
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Matt-
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PostPosted: 16:27 - 22 Sep 2012    Post subject: Re: unleaded or super unleaded Reply with quote

Super unleaded has a higher octane rating than standard unleaded - but, to take advantage of the higher octane rating, you need a car / bike that is capable of adjusting its ECU to run on it accordingly. In truth, its only usually higher performance cars that will give you any benefit from it, as some cars simply cannot detect the higher octane.

You can use it in any car that takes unleaded, and it won't do any harm, but if your car / bike isn't capable of getting the benefit out of the fuel, then you are wasting your money.

To be honest it's a waist of money Thumbs Up

Matt
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janner_10
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PostPosted: 18:24 - 22 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

You wont notice any difference, aside the price.
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stevo as b4
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PostPosted: 18:35 - 22 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Either strip down your engine and fit either a set of forged high compression pistons, and or skim the head to raise the compression ratio significantly above stock.

or
Fit a turbocharger installation and once you get it set up with the right fueling and ignition to make it run safely and reliably, keep turning up the boost pressure until it detonates.

If you do either of the above then switching to 98-100RON fuel will give a performance and or reliability benefit over std 95RON unleaded. If you do neither of these things, then just keep putting in a good brand of regular 95RON unleaded, and if your bothered about all the engine cleaning properties of these fancy fuels, then just add a good qaulity fuel additive every say 4-5 tankfuls of fuel. Simples!
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Flatbadger
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PostPosted: 18:52 - 22 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

I presume then if I were to fill up with the wrong one, there would be no actual damage? This possibility has crossed my mind!
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WannaBeDude
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PostPosted: 18:56 - 22 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

SEARCH button - read - the 1000 threads on it !! Idea
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flumpy7
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PostPosted: 23:03 - 22 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Its kind of like the difference between buying a 16p pack of paracetamol or a 2 pack of max.strength cold and flu tablets that are bacially just paracetamol with a shot of caffeine.....stupid, in other words.
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Srengam
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PostPosted: 11:57 - 23 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

If your bikes running fine on 95 Octane then you should continue to use it and not waste money on the higher octane fuels.

If it's running a bit rough then the higher octane levels can sometimes make up for it. Try running two tanks of Shell V-Power through it, the higher octane levels may compensate for some small problems (slightly gummy carbs for exmple), also, V-Power has top notch cleaning additives.

If you use your bike infrequently you'd be best using any BP fuel or Esso's premium grade, as these are ethanol free.

But: ultimately, if it's not running fine on normal 95 octane, then it's a bike problem really. (I use BP 95 fuel because it's normal price and ethanol free)
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StevRS
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PostPosted: 12:54 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

A friend's neighbour works for a lab that make fuel additives. Some premium brands have cleaning additives that work very, very well indeed (and the fuel companies pay a huge amount to be able add them to their fuels).

If the bike's been sat and there's likely gumming of the carbs or crap lurking around, forget the Redex and forego the carb rebuild and just chuck a tank of branded super through it. It does work.
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MarJay
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PostPosted: 12:59 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

As others have said really.

As a slight aside, the BMW K1300R / K1300S has a knock sensor and so can use the higher octane rating of super unleaded. As does the current CBR600RR. Would not be surprised if the same was true for the S1000RR, the Panigale and the Japanese 1000cc superbikes.
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weasley
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PostPosted: 13:42 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Having a knock sensor does not necessarily equate to being able to benefit from higher RON. Simple knock sensor setups are just for protection of the engine; the ignition timing runs at a level suitable for 95 RON and the knock sensor only retards it if there's any knocking, from poor fuel, overloading etc. So the engine will never advance the ignition timing beyond the base timing, hence higher RON fuel will make no difference (other than preventing any knocks occurring).

More sophisticated ignition systems will dynamically advance the ignition to seek out the optimum timing; in these cases a higher RON fuel will be of benefit.

Let's also not confuse RON with quality. You can have highly-additised, quality fuel that is 95 RON and you can have cheap and cheerful fuel that is 97/98/99 RON.

Finally, a higher RON fuel can help an older engine out if it has, for example, any combustion chamber deposits. These deposits can get hot and act like a glow plug, setting off the air/fuel charge earlier than the spark plug. In these cases a higher RON fuel will resist this early detonation.

That said, for most bikes under most conditions, you won't get much or any benefit from higher RON fuel.
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Rogerborg
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PostPosted: 13:47 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

StevRS wrote:
[My mate says] some premium brands have cleaning additives that work very, very well indeed

Which ones do?

Which ones don't?
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WannaBeDude
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PostPosted: 14:30 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Was going to ask - but figured it's gotto be, Shell - Tax and BP - Confused Idea
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StevRS
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PostPosted: 15:35 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rogerborg wrote:
StevRS wrote:
[My mate says] some premium brands have cleaning additives that work very, very well indeed

Which ones do?

Which ones don't?


Oddly, he was reluctant to say.
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Rogerborg
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PostPosted: 15:59 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

StevRS wrote:
Oddly, he was reluctant to say.

Right, and my uncle was a nuclear spy SAS ninja, but I'm not supposed to talk about it.
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Kickstart
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PostPosted: 19:23 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Re: unleaded or super unleaded Reply with quote

polisher wrote:
hi guys
is there any difference in using normal unleaded to super unleaded?
benefits and disadvantages?


Did a big post on this a while ago:-

http://www.bikechatforums.com/viewtopic.php?p=2921369

Basics of it are that higher octane fuel on its own gives you nothing at all. It does allow other things to be changed which can give you more power, such as compression ratio, ignition timing and boost pressure. Only 2 of these can really be changed on the fly (OK, there have been the odd engine built with adjustable compression ratios but lets ignore them!), and with bikes there are virtually none with turbochargers / superchargers to adjust boost. That leaves ignition timing which possibly can be adjusted to take advantage of higher octane fuel based on the feedback from a knock sensor. But the gains from this are not going to be big. You could adjust the timing manually for higher octane fuel, but if you do this you would risk fairly major engine damage if you then used normal fuel.

Higher octane fuel might actually cost you some power. The additives to give you a higher octane rating do not provide you with much power. And one simple way to get a higher octane fuel is to just make it burn more slowly.

That said, some of the fancier fuels have other claims beyond just a higher octane rating.

All the best

Keith
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Polarbear
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PostPosted: 19:56 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rogerborg wrote:
StevRS wrote:
[My mate says] some premium brands have cleaning additives that work very, very well indeed

Which ones do?

Which ones don't?


Shell do. They have spent millions on their R&D on additives especially since the debacle when their fuels were accused of munching valve gear.
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Llama-Farmer
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PostPosted: 20:26 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the cleaning agents in the fuel, yes they're beneficial. But to increase the power, the ECU has to detect that it is a higher RON rating so it can adjust the ignition timing. Most cars and bikes don't do this, normally only "premium" ones. And turbos especially will benefit as they can increase boost without detonation.
(Fifth Gear test found 0 bhp/0% difference on a Renault Clio, 14bhp/6.4% difference on a Subaru Impreza WRX STi. More power = less throttle needed = less fuel used).
If the engine/injectors have built up contaminants and gum and stuff on them, they can reduce the efficiency of the engine, so once cleaned by the premium fuel (or fuel treatment additive) you may see a power and fuel efficiency increase, but this may be a result of the cleaned engine parts rather than the ECU changing the ignition timing.

Diesel is different though, whereas petrol RON is a measure of its resistance to detonation, diesel's Cetane is a measure of how quickly it burns, the quicker (higher Cetane rating) the better and will improve power regardless of the engine ECU. Another reason all diesels should use premium fuel is because it significantly reduces the contaminant buildups on the injectors and pumps, so can increase life and prevent failure of the parts even on old 10yr/200k mile cars.




TL/DR

- Worth using for the cleaning properties alone (but a fuel treatment/additive can be used instead for same effect)

- Will probably increase power and efficiency as engine/injectors are cleaned

- May increase power and efficiency even more if ECU can adjust ignition timing
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JoeDougieDoug...
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PostPosted: 20:51 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

See, everyone is saying 'its a waste of money' but I do actually get more miles out of a tank of super unleaded... around 40 - 50 miles infact. I dont know if its just in my head, but last time I measured it, I got 260 to a tank of unleaded regular and 305 to a tank of super unleaded... co-insidence?
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Kickstart
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PostPosted: 20:53 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi

Super unleaded, or something like V Power?

All the best

Keith
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JoeDougieDoug...
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PostPosted: 20:58 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kickstart wrote:
Hi

Super unleaded, or something like V Power?

All the best

Keith


Is V power not the same as 'super unleaded'? Sorry, i'm misinformed.

I use V Power.
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Kickstart
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PostPosted: 21:33 - 24 Sep 2012    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi

Super unleaded often just refers to unleaded with a higher octane. V power and the like tend to have the higher octane rating but also various other claims.

As mentioned, one way to get a higher octane rating from a fuel is just to make it burn more slowly, which on its own is likely to cost you power.

All the best

Keith
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