Dealing with a huge headwind ?

Discussion in 'Hacks' started by davebig, Jun 28, 2013.

  1. davebig

    davebig Another Angry Hun !

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    Has anyone got a regular strategy they employ when stuck with a 30+ mph headwind ? Like gear down only go the posted limit be patient, my rig is geared low enough I can and do get pissed and just pound away but usually my mileage suffers.
    Living in one of the top 10 windiest places in the US has always proven a pain in the ass and in a past life as a bicyclist pain elsewhere.DB
    http://theweathercentre.wordpress.com/2011/03/14/us-weather-extremes-top-10-windiest-cities/
    #1
  2. Wolfgang55

    Wolfgang55 Long timer

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    Usually I think ok great my air cooled power plant is really getting some more cool down time w/ all that extra air working through the fins.

    But mostly I just retard the spark & keep on chugging.
    #2
  3. Tarka

    Tarka Doesn't wave back.

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    On my Urals it`s a case of drop to third gear, get yer feet on the pillion pegs and keep yer head down.
    #3
  4. Old Mule

    Old Mule Been here awhile

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    Coming back to Minneapolis from an AMCA meet in Sioux City on my old 650 Triumph/Steib, I was going 70 with the throttle almost closed...but getting out there against that prairie wind was hell, down in 4th geat all the way and it was exhausting.
    #4
  5. RedMenace

    RedMenace Adventure Sidecar

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    I think you pretty much have it covered. Not much you can do put hunker down and slog through it, try not to have a death grip at the bars or locked elbows. A slippery fairing and a full faced helmet are big plusses. If the hack has a windshield, you might remove it or fold it down if you can.
    #5
  6. claude

    claude Sidecar Jockey

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    Put it in the gear it is happiest in, grit your teeth and go for it.
    #6
  7. dholaday

    dholaday Been here awhile

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    What Claude said. And RedMenace.

    I had lots of headwinds on my run to the USCA, and some quartering headwinds on the way back so far [when the rig is moving and I'm not sitting in a chair by the side of the road that is].

    I just go as fast as I can and forget about gas mileage. I'm more interested in getting where I want to go than saving gas. A couple of tanks heading east were 25-27 mpg running at GPS indicated 75mph into strong unknown mph headwinds.

    I'm sure someone here has the math skills it's simple algebra] and interest [but not me] to figure out that if I drove at 65 instead of 75 I'd get 30mpg instead of 27 which would save me 1 gas stop in a trip of 'x' miles and thus 10 minutes fill-up time but I would lose that 10 minutes and more because of the slower speed during the trip so why bother?? :lol3

    My 2c
    Duncan
    #7
  8. davebig

    davebig Another Angry Hun !

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    :roflHmmmm ! I'm going to change my final drive one more time I guess go up a tiny bit from 34/11 to 33 so when the wind gods are punishing me I can run 5th a little easier.It generally irritates me that motorcycles are not very efficient.When really patient I can eck out almost 33mpg but mostly its 30 and in lots of wind 26-27
    (I know Claude its smiles per mile ! I do enjoy that strangers get a kick out of sidecars )
    But dog damnit I want a few more miles per gallon, I'll admit I'm a recovering Duncan I wanted to be where I wanted to be when I wanted to be there !
    I'm kind of surprised that tire size has so much to do with speed the difference between 165/80 and a 175/65 is about 2 mph for any given engine speed.
    Or maybe I just need a break from examining the lint in my navel !!!!!:lol3
    #8
  9. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

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    Two other suggestions, kinda silly, but it's all about wind drag. (1) put on your rain gear. It's more slippery. (2) shove Justin's head down and snap on the tonneau cover. I usually get at least 1 mpg better with the cover on than with it off (no windscreen).

    BTW, in bad weather I frequently deploy the tonneau cover then the car interior becomes a dark cave for Kirby. He doesn't seem to mind. Last time I did this, when we arrived at the motel I was cold and wet and tired, then I unsnapped the cover and there's Mr. K, warm and dry, yawning at me. :D
    #9
  10. Tarka

    Tarka Doesn't wave back.

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    Raising your gearing is going to make things worse in 5th mate.
    Depending on your bike`s torque curve it may not even pull a higher 5th against a killer headwind.

    But hey,at least your taller final drive will make things more pleasant in 4th. :D
    #10
  11. davebig

    davebig Another Angry Hun !

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    Tarka
    It's a BMW 6spd it's geared now so it'll easily pull past 80 in a 30 mph wind, I got power I need more economy.
    Drone
    I was a bicyclist I know about wind and economy, Justin likes his cave with the cover on and has hunkered down in storms already.DB

    Final drive changed from 3.1 to a 3.0 will post difference in engine speed after a little ride.DB
    #11
  12. Tarka

    Tarka Doesn't wave back.

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    Ah...geddit now!

    I`m mostly in a 4 speed world so even 5 speeds is a bit futurama. :D
    #12
  13. airspro

    airspro Been here awhile

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    My new to me rig got 28 to 39 MPG on my Fly an Ride trip , that's with the 33/11 . First week I never got into 6th gear . Was still learning etc I think , but the second week I was doing 80 on the speedo and 75 on the Garmin all the way till back from Ca till the drive spilled it's oil in Springfield , MO .

    Was just under 4k at 75MPH on the Garmin . That's with a new rear tire .

    best
    spro

    EDIT : 39 was with a 40 plus MPH tailwind :)
    #13
  14. davebig

    davebig Another Angry Hun !

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    In an effort to find more economy I switched my final drive from a 3.1 34/11 to a only slightly higher 3.0 33/11, my rigs a gasdv tug with the lower 1st and 6th, I'm running 175/65/15 tires shorter than stock, and plan to continue running them.
    It works out to about 2mph higher for any engine speed I'm getting sort of what I want.55mph is 3500,61mph 4000 and in 5th 55 is about 4000 for those violent 30+mph headwinds.
    The whole point being is I wanted to run along in 6th over 60 mph and under 4500 rpm easy to do now 4500 is 68 mph all speeds are from gps.
    Switching tire sizes has about the same effect 175/65 vs 165/80, take that in to consideration when choosing gearing,I didn't if you think that's allot of rpm for road speed keep in mind the 850/1100/1150 BMW all share the same crank and rods and final drives from 37/11 to 31/11. Have it your way ! DB
    #14
  15. usgser

    usgser Long timer

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    That's the only "strategy" I know of. Pick a gear that keeps you in the power band and bull your way through it. Yeah your mpgs will suffer but that's just part of the deal if you're if you're bucking a head wind.
    #15