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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got my new Raider yesterday. Whoa, what a bike! Can anyone offer some advice on engine break-in? The manual says for the first 600 miles "avoid prolonged operation above 1/3 throttle." (Yes, I actually read the manual!!) So what does "prolonged operation" constitute? How much damage can be caused? This is the first new bike I have ever owned and I have never had to contend with engine break-in before. Are there any tricks to it, or do I just putter along like grandad for 600 miles? Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Wow, thank you for that information! This is totally the opposite to everything I have ever heard or read about engine break-in. It is also completely at odds with the info in the Raider manual. It does make sense, though. Only problem is that my bike already has more than 20 miles on the odometer, but I think I will apply the other principles. This really is amazing. I love people who think about things and don't just blindly follow!

You a "Star" :wave:
 

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eian31 said:
I subscribe to this theory have done it on my last 2 new bikes including the Raider!
http://www.mototuneusa.com/break_in_secrets.htm

Take a look
I'm a subscriber, as well. You don't think John Force drag races with a motor that has a few hundred miles, do you? :D Nope - the motor gets rebuilt between runs. Technically requiring a break-in.

To clarify to the OP - prolonged operation could be considered highway use or at any time where you will keep the throttle steady for longer than a few minutes.

But... it's your bike... do what you will ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes, I figure it is still sensible to avoid "prolonged operation". MotoMan's method is more about loading the engine. He says to hit it with short hard bursts in 2nd, 3rd and 4th gear, and also to use deceleration to help to seal the rings. I'm going to look like a real weirdo on the road doing this! He also makes the obvious point about warming the engine first.
 

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DogBite

My deal gave me the following advice about the break-in period. It seemed a bit more straightforward. During break-in, don't open the throttle full wide. Keep it usually within 1/3, and not more than 50%. Try to run the bike at a variety of speeds, a variety of gears, and a variety of power levels, while staying in the specified throttle range.

Those instructions are pretty practical - you can have a lot of fun with your bike under those guidelines.

distantThunder
 

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I'm going to offer my two cents worth. Please take this as an opinion and personal experience only. I don't know all the rules and I certainly am not a Honda or Yamaha mechanic.

I bought a new Honda Spirit 1100 July 1st last year. Everyone told me to take it easy on her at first (first 600 miles). Well, I hadn't owned a bike or ridden regularly for several years. Silly me - I rode her hard and went up to Mt. Rainier several times - through the twisties - sometimes solo - sometimes with the wife - probably revving too high as I really like the twisties.
We drug the footpegs repeatedly and Karen just giggles and hung on.

Almost 18,000 miles later we're getting 50 MPG and my gut feeling is that everything is working as it should. I broke all the rules and installed Cobra slip-on mufflers (I like a little noise) and also a K&N air filter. Yes - no carb adjustment. I honestly cannot attest to any performance increase. It just sounds better and Karen hasn't complained about the noise, so I'm assuming everything is OK. The plugs are neither light tan nor dark brown or black, so I can only assume that everything is working OK. I'm planning to replace the rear tire and plugs soon. I'm running Amsoil in the crank and in the rear end.

As for the Raider, I've put on over 2000 miles in the past three weeks that I've owned her. Other than a little valve rattle, everything seems OK. I have never 'taken it easy' but don't really run her as hard as wide open. OK - I've hit 130 on the speedo a couple of times, but that's not the norm. I'm averaging 42-47 MPG and can only assume that it's a direct correlation to the throttle input. It's difficult to not just open her up now and then. Sorry - that's just me.

I would like either a 6th gear or a smaller rear sprocket as I cruise at higher speeds and really enjoy cruising. Tomorrow morning - oops, it's tomorrow already, I'll ride from Tacoma to Portland - get a cup of coffee and return - just for the fun of riding. Most of this will be between 60 and 75, but I plan on hitting 120-130 at least once - probably 3-4 times during the ride.

Change your oil often during the break-in period. Crap gets in there and the oil filter can only offer so much protection.

Ride the bike during the break-in like you'll ride her later. I absolutely don't believe in 'babying' a new engine. No reason to hit redline - just ride it like you will always do. Maybe I just keep getting lucky. Maybe there's something to it. My gut feeling is that if you break her in gently, you'll be 'babying' her forever. That's just my opinion - nothing to base it on other than personal experience.

Good luck to you!

Let's ride!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you everyone for your comments about engine break-in. If you haven't had a look at the link posted by Eian, then check it out. It's quite an eye-opener and at the very least makes you think.

I figure that whatever the experts say (and I sure am not in that category), the reality is that guys get a new bike and can't resist pushing it a bit just to check it out. I guess if one is going thrash the bike during run-in, then you may end up with problems. Pink Panther's comments about just riding the bike like you normally do make sense, which is pretty much what I have been doing.

I took it for another run this morning. What a great machine this is! The balance of the bike is fantastic, unlike many that have a similar look, but are really clumsy to ride. I am amazed that such a big bike is so easy to handle.

Thanks again

DogBite :D
 
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