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Old 09-03-2004, 06:58 PM   #1
kurtw OP
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Estimating fuel level on 640 Adv?

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...
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Old 09-03-2004, 07:23 PM   #2
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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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Old 09-03-2004, 07:31 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mack
You could strip or sand a vertical strip of paint off the tank, and apply graduations to show fuel quanity.
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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Old 09-03-2004, 07:50 PM   #4
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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.
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Old 09-03-2004, 07:53 PM   #5
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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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Old 09-03-2004, 08:41 PM   #6
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Or... try this

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.

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

James has my seat,
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Old 09-03-2004, 09:02 PM   #7
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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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Old 09-03-2004, 09:34 PM   #8
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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???

creeper?
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Old 09-03-2004, 09:39 PM   #9
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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.


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Old 09-03-2004, 10:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meat popsicle
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???

creeper?
See post 6 again... I wasn't pulling your chain about the clear hose.
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Old 09-03-2004, 10:29 PM   #11
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simple, huh?

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.....

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

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Old 09-03-2004, 11:40 PM   #12
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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.

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Old 09-03-2004, 11:59 PM   #13
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Here I go askin questions again...

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!!!

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)...

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?
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Old 09-04-2004, 12:02 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meat popsicle
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?
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.
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Old 09-04-2004, 12:04 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by creeper
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.
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?

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