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Doc, I need a road trip!
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Discussion Starter #1
What am I missing? :confused: I own a 04' vulcan 1500 Classic w/ 5000 miles. The only thing that I am wondering on is that it is carbed, and not F.I.
I have 3 bikes now (all carbed) and have owned a few others over the years (again, all carbed). My question is.. Why would I want a FI engine over my carbed one? I do realize that the FI's start easier in cold weather, and that have alittle more power (both of which I'm fine with my carbed model), but is there anything else I should be concerned with?
I realize that carbed veh's of years ago would be lucky to get 100,000 miles before the motor was shot, where as FI's would get twice that or better, but does that pertain to todays carbed vrs.'s FI bikes of today?
Just wanted to get some education here, and see if there would be a reason I should be concerned keeping my carbed model.
Thanks all!!
 

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Ahhh Crap
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2,344 Posts
FI allows for a more accurate fuel delivery method which makes it easier for manufacturers to tune bikes for emissions testing. FI bikes are more forgiving in cold weather when starting. There are certainly advantages to FI over carb but I'm in no big hurry to get ride of my carb'd 1500 Classic and FI does nothing for me. Carb'd bikes are a heck of a lot cheaper and easier to mod than FI. I also like the fact that my bike has a fraction of the wiring and connectors under the gas tank as compared to a FI bike.
 

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900 Customer
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901 Posts
Easier starting, more precise fueling, and better efficiency are the big ones I think. Also ECUs can compensate automatically for things carbs cannot, like altitude. Not sure I agree with carbs being easier to mod either. Less costly maybe but not easier. Carbs always struck me as finicky little things. And you have to sync them too. I certainly wouldn't be in a rush to get rid of a carbed bike if I owned one, but buying new there's no reason not to go FI.
 

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Doc, I need a road trip!
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1,398 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Easier starting, more precise fueling, and better efficiency are the big ones I think. Also ECUs can compensate automatically for things carbs cannot, like altitude. Not sure I agree with carbs being easier to mod either. Less costly maybe but not easier. Carbs always struck me as finicky little things. And you have to sync them too. I certainly wouldn't be in a rush to get rid of a carbed bike if I owned one, but buying new there's no reason

not to go FI.
Sounds like I already knew the advantages of the FI over the carbs, but I just wasn't sure if there would be an issue with the FI lasting longer than the carbed model. I'm almost 57 now, and I'm hoping this bike will last me. The only reason I can see to even possible go to a different bike would be getting into a V2k. Guess for now, I feel alittle better that the carbed 1500 is just fine, and nothing to really worry about. Thanks........
 

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frequently disturbs class
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2,220 Posts
Sounds like I already knew the advantages of the FI over the carbs, but I just wasn't sure if there would be an issue with the FI lasting longer than the carbed model. I'm almost 57 now, and I'm hoping this bike will last me. The only reason I can see to even possible go to a different bike would be getting into a V2k. Guess for now, I feel alittle better that the carbed 1500 is just fine, and nothing to really worry about. Thanks........
Hey Greg-
No need to fix it if it's not busted! That classic should easily last you another 20+k if you treat her right and keep on the service interval.
If you learn to tune & sync the carbs yourself, your ride will always run like a swiss watch.

No worries mon. Enjoy your fine scoot!
 

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Doc, I need a road trip!
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Discussion Starter #9
Hey Skewter!

Hey Greg-
No need to fix it if it's not busted! That classic should easily last you another 20+k if you treat her right and keep on the service interval.
If you learn to tune & sync the carbs yourself, your ride will always run like a swiss watch.

No worries mon. Enjoy your fine scoot!
I hope that bike lasts LOTS longer than 25k or so... LOL I'm sure you meant another 20k+ until it might need a tune up or alittle work of sorts. If I do keep it, I'm hoping it will go 80 to 100K before the motor takes a dump. I know I am maticulious when it comes to taking good care of my things, and I'm aware that to hit 80 to 100k it will take some repairs regardless along the way too.
 

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Super Moderator
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Hey Greg...If you learn to tune & sync the carbs yourself, your ride will always run like a swiss watch....
Don't worry Greg. I'm sure your '04 is just like my '04: it has only 1 carb.
 

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frequently disturbs class
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2,220 Posts
I hope that bike lasts LOTS longer than 25k or so... LOL I'm sure you meant another 20k+ until it might need a tune up or alittle work of sorts. If I do keep it, I'm hoping it will go 80 to 100K before the motor takes a dump. I know I am maticulious when it comes to taking good care of my things, and I'm aware that to hit 80 to 100k it will take some repairs regardless along the way too.
You are correct sir. exactly.
 

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'01 1500 Classic FI
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1,163 Posts
What am I missing?
I owned a '86 GoldWing with *4* CV carbs from 1990-2003, and never had any carb issues. In fact, they never had to be tuned. However, when I decided to buy a 1500 Classic in April of 2002, it was a tough decision deciding btw the carb and FI models.

The reason as to why I got the FI had more to do with the larger seamless fuel tank, beefier chassis, and all the other subtle improvements. Have included a link to this article which goes over the differences:

2000 Kawasaki Vulcan 1500 FI tested by Motorcycle Cruiser magazine

You're perfectly happy with the carb model so it's all good. It had a long production run from the 1996 to 2005 model years (10-years).

The 1500 Classic FI was in production from the 2000 to 2002 model years then discontinued when the 1600 Classic debuted only to be resurrected for the 2005-2008 model years when the carb version was obsoleted. That's 7-years so far. Incidently, the 1500 Drifter debuted in the 1999 model year with FI. Then we have all those 1500 Nomads with FI.
 
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