Have the Japanese brands lost their mojo?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by B1, Oct 6, 2020.

  1. phughes

    phughes Long timer Supporter

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    You commented about wanting electronic shifting, so I commented Honda DCT. Yes, it is electronic controlled. It can shift automatically, or manually. It works quite well actually. It has two gear shafts, and each shaft has its own clutch. One shaft has 1,3,5, and the other has 2,4,6. When you are in fist gear, second gear is already preselcted, making the shift very quick. The same holds for each higher gear, third is already seected when you are in second, and so on.
  2. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    I'm not emotionally committed, one way or another.

    I was commeting on the incongruity, of my own and others' views.

    Realistically...the scooter, or other, shiftless transmission, is, with time, gonna be the way. Not only technology; but that hanging on to the past is gonna be as silly as keeping a hand-shift Harley.

    But it's sad. I guess the old Harley war-riders felt the same way, as their skill with foot-clutches and hand-shift controls were obsoleted....
  3. phughes

    phughes Long timer Supporter

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    This is what I quoted. You wanted them to come up with electronic shifting, as an innovation. They have. It isn't a CV belt driven transmission, it is a transmission with actual gears. It isn't on a scooter, it is on the Goldwing, and other bikes. It can shift automatically, or manually.

    I had to reread this thread since I posted my comment quite a while ago.

    You also go on about how solid lifter valves are some sort of backwards move compared to your favorite hydraulic valves, but it isn't. Granted they are a pain to check on many bikes, my Concours 1400 to be one, but they give variable valve timing, something your hydraulic valve bikes of the 80s didn't have. They also allow for a higher RPM range, all things being equal.

    Anyway, Honda has been innovating. So have other manufacturers.
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  4. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    ...Comes down to, do you wanna wrench, or ride?
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  5. davidji

    davidji bike curious

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    Indeed. That question is coming up at a new level with Electric vs ICE. Electric motorbikes don't yet conveniently fill all the roles of an ICE bike, but for the ones they do, it's a low maintenance, and for those who can charge at home, more convenient solution.

    Electric didn't have the range I needed when I was commuting, but if it had, life would have been easier.

    And the MT vs DCT question (and I own one of each at the moment), will become some kind of gearbox vs single-speed electric. Though I wonder if we won't end up with automatically shifted 2 or 3-speed electric motorbikes someday.
  6. PeterTrocewicz

    PeterTrocewicz Long timer

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    I actually enjoy wrenching, almost as much as riding. Fortunately, I manage to do the majority of my wrenching when I cannot or should not ride anyway, either due to weather or needing to hang around the property for some reason.
  7. TNC

    TNC Candyass Camper

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    I choose both.:lol3

    Don't get me wrong. I don't want to constantly fix broken stuff, and I'm not too fired up about having to fix stuff on the side of the road/trail. But that's one of the reasons I like wrenching on the service and wear items. My greatest joy in the wrenching department is modifying or adding suspension, engine, and other performance elements of the motorcycle. Though it wasn't my career field line of work, I've always been a decent mechanic and have always enjoyed it.
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  8. BetterLateThanNever

    BetterLateThanNever Nice, until you're not.

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    False binary in my case... five bikes with gas engines, and my weekly maintenance is the same as it would be for a e bike: tire pressures, safety check and cleaning. Generally only in the fall, before storage, does a wrench get near them.

    Farkle installation excepted, of course.
  9. ChopperCharles

    ChopperCharles Long timer

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    Farkle installation and fabrication is what I like doing now for sure. I'm sick of fixing stuff.

    Charles.
  10. Big John Sny

    Big John Sny Long timer

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    just spent 6 days riding all day with a couple friends. 2 Haley’s (mine is 18 years old) and one Yamaha. the only one that needed any work was the Yamaha. Screw fell out while we were riding on rutted back dirt roads.
    probably could have happened to any of us, really.

    Was a lot tougher finding a metric screw in tiny town in Oaklahoma though. Took me three stores and over an hour.

    Not statistically significant, but considering the Harley’s also don’t need valve adjustments, ect.

    Less wrenches is probably not the best way to describe the difference.
  11. liberpolly

    liberpolly Lazy rider

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    I don't mind some wrenching in the literal sense. It's when it becomes involved with hammering, heating, being a contortionist, and so on, that I have to make an executive decision that this is no fun anymore and let someone else deal with it. Some motorcycles are notorious for that.
  12. whisperquiet

    whisperquiet Motorcyclist Supporter

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    I am a Japanese motorcycle fan......grew up with them and worked at a Honda motorcycle dealership from 1974 to 1977. I appreciate simple, fun, functional, and reliable motorcycles. Other than fuel injection and ABS, I don't care about the latest technology, 6 different modes, cornering ABS, traction control, etc. as I use my acquired riding skills and right wrist to modulate the motorcycle's movement. I like thin owner's manuals; not several hundred pages explaining technology I don't like or care about.

    I am in my mid 60's now and don't like working on bikes as much........still do it, but don't look forward to valve checks, tire changes, major maintenance, etc. I hate setting up a new bike and removing multiple layers of body work to run wiring. I LIKE to ride as much as possible......alone or with other capable riders/friends.

    I currently own a 2015 Super Tenere, a 2019 Yamaha Tracer 900 GT, and a 2021 Yamaha Tenere 700....all three cost me less than $30,000 total due to 2 bikes being used when purchased and one new.........I like owning three highly capable motorcycles that cost less than a fully accessorized Harley dresser or BMW R1200GSA. I do not want to be monetarily linked to a BMW dealer for constant software updates and required mileage and related yearly service. I applaud those who keep those dealers in business. I like the Japanese mojo.

    Opinionated rant over.
  13. bomose

    bomose Long timer Supporter

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    You must be talking about my 990. :lol3 Although I still do the wrenching.
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  14. B1

    B1 Carbon-based bipedal

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    This.
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  15. liberpolly

    liberpolly Lazy rider

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    Cornering ABS is just better ABS - why accept former and not the later? TC is just another cheap and simple safety measure, a no-brainer for a motorcycle that already has ABS and ECU to drive the fuel injection. Honestly don’t understand the distinction.
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  16. whisperquiet

    whisperquiet Motorcyclist Supporter

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    They are OK if they require minimal input from the rider ..... traction control works and two of my three bikes have it but I don’t ride hard enough to have them come into play. I try to ride and drive as smooth as possible to minimize last chance safety aids. I still like the Japanese “mojo” and don’t want to be owned by the extreme high tech Euro bikes.
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  17. liberpolly

    liberpolly Lazy rider

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    Ok that’s fair, I am on the same page, some of the tech is the solution in search of the problem, as we say in tech :)

    Last year, I managed to engage TC couple of times on wet patches - on one hand, I like to think I would manage without TC, but on the other hand I don’t want to find out :)
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  18. strommonster

    strommonster Dan Jerry racing team

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    QUOTE="HuntWhenever, post: 41117707, member: 397616"]So instead of the V-Strom, there will be an I-Strom?[/QUOTE] P-Strom. For Parallel Twin.
  19. Big John Sny

    Big John Sny Long timer

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    This is why I am getting away from some of the Japanese bikes, especially Kawasaki’s. Draining my coolant system, pulling my camshafts, ect just to adjust valves is a hassle I don’t need. Would much rather trade a few horsepower for hydraulics, or at least for screw and nut adjusters on the rockers.
    pulling the rear sub frame (or dropping the engine) to get the throttle bodies out.
    Or like my wife’s ninja, having to pull the seat, fuel tank, radiator support, and front fairing to change the instrument cluster light bulb is ridiculous.
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  20. TNC

    TNC Candyass Camper

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    Interesting take on the under-bucket-shim design. This has proven to be a relatively bullet proof design, allowing long service intervals and high rpm. Some of your past posts make me think you're mechanically inclined, so I'm not seeing you challenged by valve service with this design. Low rpm and relatively low HP per cc engines do fine with the adjusters you mention, but I'm not so fired up about that valve train design for more cutting edge engines, and when I say "cutting edge", I don't mean they have to be fire breathing, Moto GP level engines. My lowly KLX300 has the same design, and it has lengthy valve clearance service intervals.

    You're right about some models needing some serious break down to get to critical components, but I don't think Kawasaki has that market cornered by any means. Also, you have to watch out for some of the shop manual directions on component service/removal. Example: this past Saturday I installed an Ohlins rear shock on my Kawasaki. The factory shop manual states to remove the fuel tank and exhaust system...ugh! A quick cursory examination of the shock allowed me to use a bottle jack and remove the upper and lower shock bolts...out slides the shock. This is not unusual for many brands and models. I think it is probably based in some kind of liability or other issue not based on pure logic.

    I do feel for you with the cluster light bulb issue as that kind of thing is evident on lots of brands/models. I think you're singling out Kawasaki somewhat unfairly in this issue of complexity and hard-to-service components. I've worked part time off and on at a local shop since the early 70's as a mechanic. We sell Honda, Kawasaki, Yamaha, Polaris...and Husky back in the Swedish days. I've seen nearly every brand have models that were good, bad, and ugly in terms of easy service issues.
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