Chris McKitterick (mckitterick) wrote,
Chris McKitterick

Aprilia update

In this post from the weekend, I detailed the newest steps toward hot-rodding my land-speed-record Aprilia "scooter." When I took it out for a top-speed test-run, I discovered that it can now hit 76 mph! Woooo!

By the way, I figured I oughta take a photo so y'all could see what this machine looks like. Here it is where it usually lives on my front porch:
Sexiest scooter ever.

Well, in daily driving since then, I've also learned that those changes have made this bike better in just about every other way (except noise output; that's up, too, along with everything else). It now:
  • Runs at only 4500 RPM through town in fifth gear at 30mph, whereas it used to buzz in sixth at 6500 RPM when traveling that speed. This means reduced fuel consumption (theoretically; that's a big carb), lots less oil consumption (the oil injection is directly linked to RPM and throttle opening), less engine wear, lower exhaust noise, and less vibration.

  • Except for a little stumble at 5000-5500 RPM, it now has lots more power and torque across the RPM spectrum, from idle to redline. It now sorta feels like a real motorcycle *g*

  • Nicer sound. Okay, you have to like the noise that a 2-stroke puts out to understand, but if you do, it's much sexier-sounding now. The deeper intake music helps moderate the ring-ding of the exhaust
  • because of the large carb opening and simple filter-pod in place of the teeny carb opening and huge air box that muffled any intake sound. So it's louder at the same RPM as before, yes, but overall runs quieter (lower RPMs at all speeds) and sounds better doing it.
  • Less shifting. Oh, boy, is this nice. I used to have to row through all six gears just go get up to 30mph and back down to stop at the next block, but now I can use only three gears to go from stop-sign to stop-sign on a block.

  • Smoother engine-braking. The engine used to choke while decelerating if I didn't hold the throttle open just a crack. Now I can simply close the throttle and the engine still gets a little air/fuel mix, keeping it from starving during deceleration. Nice.

  • Oh, and it even starts without the choke if I give the throttle some twists while starting. That's a good thing, because the new carb's choke is situated awkwardly behind the fairing instead of using a handy lever like the old one.

So it's not just faster but also more usable and practical as a daily driver! The verdict is a happy Chris. More later as I continue the modifications.

Tags: land-speed-record aprilia, vehicles

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