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What's an inline-4 like?

Posted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 9:04 pm
by Grey Thumper
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?

Posted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 11:11 pm
by flw
It just going to be a heavier bike which you will need to get use to but along as your have your wrist under control it will be fine.

Since you already know how to ride, its only a matter of coordination between the clutch, throttle and gearing. That just takes some time and a safe minded biker.

I not sure if I have your question down but if its the gearing and rpm's your concerned with, they can run fine in town and on the highway. If you do a lot of idling then you may want to be sure you get a water cooled bike.

Posted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 11:16 pm
by Flipper
I ride a 2006 Honda 599. It's my second bike.
I think it's a perfect bike for commuting.
Very well behaved in slow speed stop and go traffic, and a real blast when you want to roll on some power.
If you stay below 7000rpm, the bike is a pussycat.
(I spend most of my time under 6000).
Above 7000rpm the afterburner kicks in and the bike has a power surge.
I can't imagine anyone getting over 7000rpm by accident.
The bike is really screaming by the time you are at that range.
It's a very friendly bike. I love mine.

Unfortunately, Honda is no longer bringing the 599 to the states.
Too bad, because I think the 2009 model is hot.
Image

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 1:59 am
by Grey Thumper
Flipper wrote:Unfortunately, Honda is no longer bringing the 599 to the states. Too bad, because I think the 2009 model is hot.
I agree, that is one beautiful bike. IMHO the best looking current production Japanese bike (although the Euro only liter version looks good too).

I dropped by a used bike dealer an hour ago and sat on a 599; it felt really compact and comfortable (I'm only 5'7", maybe 5'8" in boots). Much friendlier than the FZ6 I sat on at the same dealer.

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 2:46 am
by JC Viper
Yeah, Honda bikes can be really tame when you want it to be and sporty if that need comes about. Many publications note that the Yamaha bikes are really hell to sit on for long periods of time and tend to be a bit high strung while Honda is boring but dependable.

How about trying those Kawasaki vertical twins? What I noticed is that I-4 tend to have more power than torque and V-twins have more torque than power (or at a given RPM) and parallel twins have somewhat of a middle ground.

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 4:13 am
by Grey Thumper
JC Viper wrote:How about trying those Kawasaki vertical twins? What I noticed is that I-4 tend to have more power than torque and V-twins have more torque than power (or at a given RPM) and parallel twins have somewhat of a middle ground.
Yah mean like this one?

Image

http://www.motorcycledaily.com/15july05 ... i_er6n.htm

Great idea, and a very cool looking bike, although sadly not available where I'm from.

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 5:08 am
by JC Viper
Doesn't BMW sell a parallel twin in Manila? F800 I believe it is called. How about Honda, Yamaha? Don't they sell some kind of twins? I'm in he US and we get a fraction of what some other countries get.

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 9:39 am
by slimcolo
A in line four is a motorcycle with a four cyl. motor where 1) the cyls are in straight form and not a vee or boxer. 2) The crank shaft is parallel to direction of travel. (there were also in line twos like Sunbeam, and older BMW singles like the R27 are in line singles because of crankshaft placement)

Most four cyl bikes (even though all cyl are lined up) are not in line they are sideways (perpendicular, or trans-verse) mounted. (same is true with most front wheel drive cars, but same motor can be mounted either way in different cars----in line with most rear wheel drive)

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 12:29 pm
by The Doctor
Inline 4's are..... :humm: Awesome!!!

:D

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 2:21 pm
by Ninja Geoff
Grey Thumper wrote:
JC Viper wrote:How about trying those Kawasaki vertical twins? What I noticed is that I-4 tend to have more power than torque and V-twins have more torque than power (or at a given RPM) and parallel twins have somewhat of a middle ground.
Yah mean like this one?

Image

http://www.motorcycledaily.com/15july05 ... i_er6n.htm

Great idea, and a very cool looking bike, although sadly not available where I'm from.
Look at the Er-6F aka Ninja 650R. Same bike essentially, just with plastics. FWIW they're great in traffic. 0-80 in straight up acceleration it's on par with the 600's. After that the 600's top ends walk on them though. Oh well, let's see a 600 surge ahead at 2500 RPM in 2nd gear dodging a semi the way the 650R does :mrgreen:
JC Viper wrote:Doesn't BMW sell a parallel twin in Manila? F800 I believe it is called. How about Honda, Yamaha? Don't they sell some kind of twins? I'm in he US and we get a fraction of what some other countries get.
The new F650's are twins for 08/09.

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 2:33 pm
by Lisa
slimcolo wrote:A in line four is a motorcycle with a four cyl. motor where 1) the cyls are in straight form and not a vee or boxer. 2) The crank shaft is parallel to direction of travel. (there were also in line twos like Sunbeam, and older BMW singles like the R27 are in line singles because of crankshaft placement)

Most four cyl bikes (even though all cyl are lined up) are not in line they are sideways (perpendicular, or trans-verse) mounted. (same is true with most front wheel drive cars, but same motor can be mounted either way in different cars----in line with most rear wheel drive)

Inline is only the configuration of the pistons in the engine, not the orientation of the motor in the bike.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inline_4
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straight-4
http://auto.howstuffworks.com/engine-inline.htm

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 4:22 pm
by JC Viper
Ninja Geoff wrote:
Grey Thumper wrote:
JC Viper wrote:How about trying those Kawasaki vertical twins? What I noticed is that I-4 tend to have more power than torque and V-twins have more torque than power (or at a given RPM) and parallel twins have somewhat of a middle ground.
Yah mean like this one?

Image

http://www.motorcycledaily.com/15july05 ... i_er6n.htm

Great idea, and a very cool looking bike, although sadly not available where I'm from.
Look at the Er-6F aka Ninja 650R. Same bike essentially, just with plastics. FWIW they're great in traffic. 0-80 in straight up acceleration it's on par with the 600's. After that the 600's top ends walk on them though. Oh well, let's see a 600 surge ahead at 2500 RPM in 2nd gear dodging a semi the way the 650R does :mrgreen:
JC Viper wrote:Doesn't BMW sell a parallel twin in Manila? F800 I believe it is called. How about Honda, Yamaha? Don't they sell some kind of twins? I'm in he US and we get a fraction of what some other countries get.
The new F650's are twins for 08/09.
The BMW dealer said there wasn't going to be too much of a difference between the new and old 650 because the 800cc engine will be detuned to act like a 650. Some publications noted this as well so I'm guessing the guy wasn't trying too hard to get me to buy a bigger model. I want my 650 Dakar!

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 4:27 pm
by flynrider
Thumper,

The inline 4 that you'll find on something like a 599 or FZ6 is detuned a bit from the sportbike versions. They're specifically tuned to provide more torque at lower rpms for street riding at the expense of a few horses at the top end. I've ridden both those bikes and they have excellent street manners.

If you've only ridden singles and twins, the first thing you're going to have to get used to is the lack of vibration. The I-4 is smooth as glass by comparison. You don't get nearly as much feedback from the engine vibration. It takes a bit of getting used to.

Like you, I rode singles and twins for years. The first time I rode an I-4 bike, I couldn't tell that the engine was running after I started it up :laughing:

Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 10:03 pm
by Dragon on Wheels
Wow! That honda is purrrty! Why don't we get any of those bikes here??? :cry:

Posted: Sun Sep 21, 2008 6:54 pm
by KeithB
I just traded off my ZZR600, inline 4s are smooth and powerful.

I miss my rocket, but in the spring plan to pick up a ZX-14R

Posted: Sun Sep 21, 2008 9:53 pm
by Grey Thumper
JC Viper wrote:
Ninja Geoff wrote:
JC Viper wrote:Doesn't BMW sell a parallel twin in Manila? F800 I believe it is called. How about Honda, Yamaha? Don't they sell some kind of twins? I'm in he US and we get a fraction of what some other countries get.
The new F650's are twins for 08/09.
The BMW dealer said there wasn't going to be too much of a difference between the new and old 650 because the 800cc engine will be detuned to act like a 650. Some publications noted this as well so I'm guessing the guy wasn't trying too hard to get me to buy a bigger model. I want my 650 Dakar!
I tried a used F800ST and didn't really like the riding position. The F650 twin felt great, except I'm not really willing to spend the dough on a new bike, especially one in its first year of production.

I think I'll go hunting around for a nice used SV650 first, and then a 4 if I can't find a good SV.

Posted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 7:16 am
by High_Side
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.

Posted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 2:15 pm
by Misguided Missle
I downed sized from a FJ1200, to a 650 90 degree twin.

Gas mileage went way up, new machine is lighter, and as fast, just doesnt have the top end.

Depends what you are going to do with your machine.

Posted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 4:24 pm
by Skier
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.

Posted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 7:46 pm
by High_Side
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.....