What's an inline-4 like?

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IcyHound
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#21 Unread post by IcyHound » Mon Sep 22, 2008 7:59 pm

I'm on a FZ6. I love it. The low end is mellow. Almost like a car and little torque under 4k. It is great in stop and go traffic because it just kinda drifts forward without issues.

All the power of the I4 is up top. They humm, buzz, and then scream to life. The FZ6 starts kissing its power band at 6k and at 8k its a totally different machine. I love it.
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#22 Unread post by HYPERR » Mon Sep 22, 2008 8:20 pm

IcyHound wrote:I'm on a FZ6. I love it. The low end is mellow. Almost like a car and little torque under 4k. It is great in stop and go traffic because it just kinda drifts forward without issues.

All the power of the I4 is up top. They humm, buzz, and then scream to life. The FZ6 starts kissing its power band at 6k and at 8k its a totally different machine. I love it.
I agree. The 600cc inline 4 from Japan are amazing engines. They don't put out much torque at the lower RPM but it is still smooth as butter and perfectly happy and stress free even at very low rpms.

It's funny because the L-Twin on my Ducati is a torque monster but at lower rpms, you can tell it isn't really happy. It just vibrates the wrong way and you can tell it's sorta stressed.

You would think it would be the other way around....
Last edited by HYPERR on Mon Sep 22, 2008 8:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#23 Unread post by Skier » Mon Sep 22, 2008 8:20 pm

High_Side wrote:
Skier wrote:
Dragon on Wheels wrote:Wow! That honda is purrrty! Why don't we get any of those bikes here??? :cry:
Honda did bring those bikes to North America for a couple years. Nobody bought them.
'cept one guy who bought one and rode it to Alaska....... so he can't be taken seriously :P

Just kidding of course.....
I got mine second-hand so I didn't pad Honda's numbers at all.

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#24 Unread post by Grey Thumper » Tue Sep 23, 2008 1:44 am

High_Side wrote:The new twin cylinder F650 is actually supposed to be quite a bit more powerful than the old thumper. The bugs should be worked out of it since it is almost the same bike as the F800s that have been going for a couple of years. You can't go wrong with an SV, but the new F650 looks to be a good machine.
Good point. Yeah, maybe I should give it a try, especially when used ones pop up in a coupla years. The great thing about little beemers here is that people tend to upgrade to the bigger ones quickly and not clock up a lot of ks on their "starter" F650s, or even F800s.
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#25 Unread post by Ivan M » Fri Oct 10, 2008 4:56 am

I made the transition from a two to a four and loved it. There's nothing wrong with a two of course, but riding a four is more fun for me. You shouldn't have any problems in traffic with an inline four.
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Re: What's an inline-4 like?

#26 Unread post by jk333 » Sat Oct 25, 2008 12:47 am

Grey Thumper wrote:Been looking around for another bike, something with a bit more power than my F650, but not much more. Thinking of getting a Japanese middleweight standard, like a 599 or an FZ6, as my wife will eventually be riding my thumper (cough). Bizarrely, I've never ridden an inline four, only singles (ranging from 50 to 650cc), and twins. I've read spec-wise how high I-4 torque peaks are, especially compared to my single-cylinder F650.

My concern is with commuting and slow-speed filtering through traffic, for which the F is fantastic. So anyway, how different do I-4's feel?

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#27 Unread post by gsJack » Sat Oct 25, 2008 9:41 am

Here's a Cycle World comparo that includes some of the bikes mentioned above; Ducati Monster 695, Honda 599, Hyosung GT650R, Kawasaki Ninja 650R, Suzuki SV650 and Yamaha FZ6. I keep my paper copy handy since these are bikes of some interest to me, I've owned and racked up many, many miles on 4 twins and 2 fours. I prefer twins.

http://www.cycleworld.com/article.asp?s ... cle_id=265

They had a great comparo between all two of the 800cc sport touring bikes, the F800ST and Honda's VFR800 that showed the F800 to be quite the match for the Interceptor. Can't find it online, got a paper copy somewhere in a big pile.

A friend of mine who rode a ZRX1200 when I met him traded it in on a SV1000 and was noticeably faster on the SV in the twisties. He has a 599 now but I haven't ridden with him much since he got it.
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#28 Unread post by jstark47 » Sat Oct 25, 2008 6:17 pm

HYPERR wrote:It's funny because the L-Twin on my Ducati is a torque monster but at lower rpms, you can tell it isn't really happy. It just vibrates the wrong way and you can tell it's sorta stressed.
It IS peculiar, the L-twin on my V-strom is the same way. Below 4K it's not happy. Yet my the I4 on my wife's Trophy pulls smoothly and quite contentedly from as low as 2K.
HYPERR wrote:You would think it would be the other way around....
Indeed.
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#29 Unread post by fireguzzi » Sat Oct 25, 2008 7:03 pm

jstark47 wrote:
HYPERR wrote:It's funny because the L-Twin on my Ducati is a torque monster but at lower rpms, you can tell it isn't really happy. It just vibrates the wrong way and you can tell it's sorta stressed.
It IS peculiar, the L-twin on my V-strom is the same way. Below 4K it's not happy. Yet my the I4 on my wife's Trophy pulls smoothly and quite contentedly from as low as 2K.
HYPERR wrote:You would think it would be the other way around....
Indeed.
I imagine it has a lot to do with the camshafts they use. the Duc and the vstrom are trying to be sportier then your avg. big American Vtwin with tractor like cams and uber gobs of torque. The Triumph is probably camed to be more streetable then your avg. japanese I-4 screamer.
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#30 Unread post by Johnj » Sun Oct 26, 2008 1:48 am

fireguzzi wrote:
jstark47 wrote:
HYPERR wrote:It's funny because the L-Twin on my Ducati is a torque monster but at lower rpms, you can tell it isn't really happy. It just vibrates the wrong way and you can tell it's sorta stressed.
It IS peculiar, the L-twin on my V-strom is the same way. Below 4K it's not happy. Yet my the I4 on my wife's Trophy pulls smoothly and quite contentedly from as low as 2K.
HYPERR wrote:You would think it would be the other way around....
Indeed.
I imagine it has a lot to do with the camshafts they use. the Duc and the vstrom are trying to be sportier then your avg. big American Vtwin with tractor like cams and uber gobs of torque. The Triumph is probably camed to be more streetable then your avg. japanese I-4 screamer.
The Concours is also setup more for the mid-range than the top end. :wink:
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#31 Unread post by jmillheiser » Mon Oct 27, 2008 5:03 am

I started on a twin and moved up to an inline 4 on my second bike.

The main difference I notice between the 2. Twin comes on strong at the bottom but trails off a bit at the top. An inline 4 is a little soft at the bottom (easy to manage if you dont hamfist the throttle), and gets a huge surge of power when it comes into its powerband and pulls all the way up to the top.

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#32 Unread post by Grey Thumper » Mon Oct 27, 2008 10:21 pm

IcyHound wrote:I'm on a FZ6. I love it. The low end is mellow. Almost like a car and little torque under 4k. It is great in stop and go traffic because it just kinda drifts forward without issues.

All the power of the I4 is up top. They humm, buzz, and then scream to life. The FZ6 starts kissing its power band at 6k and at 8k its a totally different machine. I love it.
How do you find the clutch/friction zone? It seems like this is the best value among middleweight standards (fairing, centerstand, etc.) but a lot of reviews note the clutch, or is that a "spoiled reviewer" kinda thing?
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#33 Unread post by jmillheiser » Wed Oct 29, 2008 3:59 am

Cant vouch for the FZ6 as I have never ridden one, but normally once you ride a bike for a little bit you get the feel for where its clutch is going to engage as no two bikes have quite the same clutch feel.

Both my Honda and my Suzuki had very smooth clutches and shifters on them, with the Suzuki having a bit wider engagement range on the clutch and a bit lighter action on the shifter.

For comparison I test rode a harley and its clutch had a rather short engagement area and was rather grabby (not a problem once you get used to it), and the shifter took a good solid shove from your foot to shift (but you KNOW it when it shifts, you get a very solid "thunk" when you shift on a harley)

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#34 Unread post by flynrider » Wed Oct 29, 2008 12:46 pm

I rode the FZ6 earlier this year and I didn't notice anything about the clutch. I expect that any bike I hop on is going to feel a little different as far as controls go. It's just something you get used to as you ride it.
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#35 Unread post by AlphaZed » Fri Nov 07, 2008 11:13 pm

Skier wrote:
Dragon on Wheels wrote:Wow! That honda is purrrty! Why don't we get any of those bikes here??? :cry:
Honda did bring those bikes to North America for a couple years. Nobody bought them.
Same was true of the Honda 919. Great bike, low sales...
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#36 Unread post by AlphaZed » Sat Nov 08, 2008 1:16 am

I think you'll find the Inline four to be much smoother. Perhaps not so much at walking speed, but definitely when in full flight...
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#37 Unread post by HYPERR » Sat Nov 08, 2008 11:39 am

fireguzzi wrote:
jstark47 wrote:
HYPERR wrote:It's funny because the L-Twin on my Ducati is a torque monster but at lower rpms, you can tell it isn't really happy. It just vibrates the wrong way and you can tell it's sorta stressed.
It IS peculiar, the L-twin on my V-strom is the same way. Below 4K it's not happy. Yet my the I4 on my wife's Trophy pulls smoothly and quite contentedly from as low as 2K.
HYPERR wrote:You would think it would be the other way around....
Indeed.
I imagine it has a lot to do with the camshafts they use. the Duc and the vstrom are trying to be sportier then your avg. big American Vtwin with tractor like cams and uber gobs of torque. The Triumph is probably camed to be more streetable then your avg. japanese I-4 screamer.
That's the thing that is so amazing about the Japanese 600 4cyl. It is cammed for max HP at the upper rpms. Despite that and it's 15,000 rpm redline, it feels totally smooth and un-stressed putting around in 6th gear at rpms that would make the Ducati protest.
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#38 Unread post by jmillheiser » Sat Nov 08, 2008 3:48 pm

My suzuki only had a 12,000 rpm redline, but still pulled strong above 7k rpm. It was also very easy to ride at low speeds too, even at a walking speed it was smooth and easy to control.

Not all sporty twins protest at low speed either. I have ridden an SV650 before and it was actually very smooth and easy to ride at low speeds, definately comparable to my bandit. Its powerband was completely different from my bandit despite the similar power numbers, the bandit was much stronger up top, the SV was noticably stronger at the low end and mid range.

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