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Which Bike? Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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  #1  
Old 30 Jun 2007
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Warning XT660R and leaded fuel.

Just found out (despite my dealers assurance of otherwise) that the Yamaha XT660R '07 with lambda probes, cannot run on leaded fuel.

Models prior to '07 should be able to run with no problems.

A "fix" is being researched and I'll let people know in the XT forum. Just a heads up in case you were considering purchasing a brand new '07 model for your overland trip.
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  #2  
Old 10 Jul 2007
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Just to confirm......

My '04 XT660R went for many a good mile in Africa using only leaded petrol. That's all there was at times.
It is still going strong, but these earlier models do not have a lambda sensor, as the later ones do.
If planning a trip where there is likely to be no unleaded, get yourself a model before the '07.
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  #3  
Old 10 Jul 2007
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Should've bought a beemer
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  #4  
Old 11 Jul 2007
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Nomadic; yeah, if you want to spend %33 more on your purchase, I'd say buy a beemer too.

The mods needed on my '07 to enable it to deal with leaded (ex-stalling the lambda probe) will run me approx. 3-400 dollars.

Buying a beemer instead would have cost me $5000 more than the price of the XT. And $7200 if I bought the dakar model (danish prices and taxes).

You do the math .
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  #5  
Old 12 Jul 2007
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As time passes my view that old style simple bikes are better suited to rtw travel becomes more entrenched.
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  #6  
Old 13 Jul 2007
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I'm inclined to agree, oldbmw. Simpler solutions for a simpler time.

But let's not get carried away here and disqualify bikes purely because a lambda probe is fitted and because they benefit from newer technologies. In time, old style simple bikes, will be unable to actually do a RTW as unleaded fuel becomes the standard in remote places (like Africa where I am going). The world moves, and we must move with it.

I do agree that a RTW or a cross Africa trip calls for a more practical approach, rather than a mindless adoration of everything "new and improved". I'll be the first to admit that buying a brand new "state of the art" machinery and believing it would not clash with third world technology, was/is a bit a naive of me. Hindsight is 20/20 as we all know.

Having said that, the Yam xt660r is a lot more than a problem lambda sensor. Which, again, is a fixable problem. It is a great bike and I am still happy with my choice. And as I've understood it, so is oldbaldric.

My thread was meant as a warning to those who were about to embark on a similar trip on a '07 model, but being unaware that the lambda would be a problem. Not as a disqualification of the bike in general.
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  #7  
Old 13 Jul 2007
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[QUOTE=McThor;143139]I'm inclined to agree, oldbmw. Simpler solutions for a simpler time.

But let's not get carried away here and disqualify bikes purely because a lambda probe is fitted and because they benefit from newer technologies. In time, old style simple bikes, will be unable to actually do a RTW as unleaded fuel becomes the standard in remote places (like Africa where I am going). The world moves, and we must move with it.

Whoa! for bikes with alloy heads, unleaded is not a problem. Remember here in teh EU or US it is difficult to buy otherwise, so any old bike that runs here will be happy to run in a third world environment. But no need to buy an old bike, the new Enfields with the lean burn engine are fine, ( especially if you 'unlean' them ).
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  #8  
Old 15 Jul 2007
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Costly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by McThor View Post
Nomadic; yeah, if you want to spend %33 more on your purchase, I'd say buy a beemer too.

The mods needed on my '07 to enable it to deal with leaded (ex-stalling the lambda probe) will run me approx. 3-400 dollars.

Buying a beemer instead would have cost me $5000 more than the price of the XT. And $7200 if I bought the dakar model (danish prices and taxes).

You do the math .
Not exactly cheap!
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  #9  
Old 24 Aug 2007
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Its just the valve guides that made it so you cant use unleaded (the material there made from wasnt as hard as the phospor bronze used now so relyed on the lead deposits not to recess). my 1960 enfield can even be converted easily enough for a few quid to unleaded as with any older bike (not that id ever dare a rtw on that ole beast lol)!
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  #10  
Old 2 Sep 2007
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Well Mcthor seems you are also on this website as well as me. Ive just got this forum working after about 1 1/2 months of waiting but had plenty of time to watch. Any way I thought i read a thread on the XT forum about you disconnecting the lambda sensor and running it on leaded fuel and it worked fine? or am i imagining things again.

Any way not too much of a problem for me as i probalby will not be able to aford an 07 XT, student and all that. But still nice to know about it.

Also just another thing to add from the XT forum that Kev one of the XT follows says that the cats in the exhaust of the XT (maybe any bike) when running on leaded fuel for a long period of time can get clogged and make the bike run badly or maybe not at all. So you may also want to look into buying some cat free cans aswell. If your going for the XT a set of Carbon Can company cans are cheap and very nice looking, thats what i hope to get.
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  #11  
Old 2 Sep 2007
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Yup, you remember correctly.

Removing the lambda makes little or no difference. I'm presuming that with the lambda, the exhaust fumes are less tough on the enviroment. EU directives have come to bike-land I guess .

Anyway, as I said in the other thread, the only effect I have encountered by removing it, is that it maybe runs 1 km less per liter petrol. I say maybe, because that one liter less may have been caused by my particular riding style that day, headwind, heavy luggage or whatever, and not due to the lambda being disconnected. In any case, the difference is neglegable. Performance wise, the engine thumped happily along as always (and no, my xt660r doesn't "surge" either. With or without the lambda). The engine error light does not come on when you disconnect the lambda. My mechanic claims that he may be able to detect the lambda failure in the computer log, but it realy doesn't make any difference what so ever if he can or not.

As for the catalyst problem; yes, catalysts will be burned due to the extremely high heat you'll expose them to with leaded fuel. The burning of catalysts itself will not impare performance of the bike, generally speaking. This problem is not limited to Yamaha bikes but any bike with a catalyst (or car for that matter). As for the clogging issue, it is still only a theoretical problem and I haven't encountered anyone who has actually experienced it. But as I said in the other forum, I'm not about to do field testing in the middle of Sahara. Going to play it safe and get some catalyst free ones.

By the way, Carbon Can Company should realy get their website running soon, or they'll miss out on my business. 4'th of November is just around the corner (yay!).
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