Estimating fuel level on 640 Adv?

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by kurtw, Sep 3, 2004.

  1. kurtw

    kurtw Child of the Wind

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    Does anyone have any bright ideas about how to estimate your fuel level on the KTM 640 Adventure? You can't see sh!t through the filler so my only points of reference are FULL or on reserve (or empty if I really messed up).

    Watching milage is probably as reliable as anything else I guess, but visual or other means of confirmation would be nice. I end up having to carry around a lot of extra fuel (weight) for short rides just to be safe... :dunno
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  2. Mack

    Mack Gone, but never forgotten. RIP, Mack...

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    You could strip or sand a vertical strip of paint off the tank, and apply graduations to show fuel quanity.

    On trips where I truck the bike, I have a long section of fuel hose, I run it from the petcock to my truck tank, gives me spare gas for the truck in remote areas, and makes it really easy to drain the ADV, allowing it to be filled with a known quanity.
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  3. kurtw

    kurtw Child of the Wind

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    I've wondered about that. Has anyone done this? Is the tank transparent enough under the paint to see the level?
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  4. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    What about some marks on the forks? All that weight has to make an impression on the front end sag. Mabye you could make some marks on the front forks, well maybe the dust shields is a better idea, and graduate it for different amounts of fuel left. :huh
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  5. Loadedagain

    Loadedagain making chips

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    meatstick has a neat idea, but i like the sanding gig. i will prolly be painting my bike this winter, so i'm gonna give it a shot.... i'll let you know how it goes.
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  6. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    Put a "tee" in your main fuel line... attach a piece of clear hose, long enough to come a bit above the tank, with a cap or plug on the end. Find a handy place to attach the hose so it's not flopping around (duct tape if your feeling paticularly goat roperish).
    Whant to see your fuel level?... remove the cap or plug and the fuel will seek it's own level in the hose... ta da. :D

    Want to clear the hose?... blow and cap, real fast. :lol3

    James has my seat,
    Creeper
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  7. Mack

    Mack Gone, but never forgotten. RIP, Mack...

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    I expect one would either need to look through the filler neck, from the inside out, so to speak, or strip some of the factory overspray off the underside of the tank and mount a light shining towards the graduated strip on the outside.
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  8. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    some nice japanese company (nippon denso) made a fuel gage cap for my 75 Yamaha rd350. it had a gage built into the cap and a float hanging on a lil chain. it was adjustable, and with some eyeballing i got the hang of knowing how much was in there.

    anyone wanna fabricate some for the Adventure??? :ear

    creeper?
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  9. G.Kennedy

    G.Kennedy ...

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    I have some pretty good road rash on my tank and I can NOT see the fuel inside. I think it would need to be more than a strip of sanded area to get enough light in there.


    [​IMG]
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  10. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    See post 6 again... I wasn't pulling your chain about the clear hose. :D
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  11. ChrisC

    ChrisC Amal sex?

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    Creep,

    I'd been considering methods for determining fuel level in the Valdez's tank, but the clear hose thing wasn't one of them. I think you might be on to something..... :thumb

    Make sure we get some pics after you receive James' redone seat.

    CC
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  12. markjenn

    markjenn Long timer

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    The clear hose technique will work (it is used on basic airplanes), but you'd need to calibrate it as I'm sure the odd cross section of the tank vertically makes it wildly non-linear. Without calibration, you'd be just guessing - I'm sure you could do much better with the trip odometer.

    Speaking of which, fuel gauges in motorcycles are not very common even today, and we've been getting along just fine with trip odometers and either reserve or low-fuel lights. Once you get a general idea of what mileage the bike returns, a trip odometer makes a pretty darn accurate fuel gauge. The only drawback I can see is that it works best if you fill the tank before resetting it and that might not be something you'd always want to do with 7.4 gallons of fuel capacity.

    - Mark
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  13. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    I don't understand why the reserve on a 7.4 gallon tank is only ~0.9 gallons... seems pretty damn stupid. How much are people getting on their reserve? My bike apparantly is running real rich and only got ~25 miles before dying. I should think the mileage should be up towards 40+; the F650 folks say they get 65!!! :huh

    I would think it great to have a real big reserve, ya know for those "adventures" where you are in BF Egypt thinking, "damn glad I got a big ass reserve to gets me outa here!" But, sadly, you only have about 25-50 miles (Depending on Tuning)... :cry

    Which reminds me of a question I had: since the right side of the tank has is own valve, could one simply shut the valve, leaving a bunch of gas on that side (provided you dont dump the bike or shake/lean too much I guess)? Then when the reserve comes on the first time, just open up, like a big primary reserve, before the DOH! final dinky one? :ear
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  14. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    You have answered your own question Meat. Shut off which ever valve floats your boat... I have no idea how much of a reserve that would provide... but it would be more that 0.9 gallons. :D
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  15. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    Nothing bad comes to mind? Might it piss off the fuel pump? Or some other piece of equipment that is expecting gas from that side? Maybe it would unbalance fuel delivery?

    Bon Noite' :thumb
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  16. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    Like Mark said, you would want to "calibrate" it. If the bike is level, and both taps are open, the fuel in the tank will "level" side to side... in a few minutes I would imagine.

    And again to paraphrase Mark... I figure the worst mileage I could ever get, about 40MPG in the dirt, times 5 gallons... and I may want to consider looking for a gas station.

    It's possible James may post a pic or two... blue and orange suede would make a good "look what I can do" shot. If not, I'll shoot the hell out of it myself. :nod

    Funny how the weather has been prefect... ever since I sent him my seat :waysad
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  17. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    Nope. The two screw valves are just for ease of removing the tanks during a service... if you never had to take the tank off, the valves might not even be there, just a couple of hose fittings.
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  18. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    Speaking of which, wonder if the Sommer quick couplers for the tank are worth the $? I like simplicity, but seems like with the valves it wouldn't be worth it.

    Sure you don't want to make fuel gages? :lol3
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  19. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    Only if your too lazy to squeeze off a couple hose clamps. If you were racing Dakar... it would be quicker I suppose.
    And those "quick disconnect couplers" are available in all the major distributor catalogs... Tucker, Parts Unlimited...........................
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  20. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    Sure... be glad to cut you off a piece of hose, grab a few plastic tees
    and a length of duct tape. $29.95 seem fair to you? :poser :poser :poser
    #20