Originally Posted by Netdewt
I tried reading through as much as I could. How do I find the proper grade to use? Is it guess and check? I just filled up for the first time and put 87 in by habit. I could figure out a way to drain it if necessary.
What are the basics of what you're saying? Go by manufacturers recommendation for grade and avoid additives/ethanol?
I talked to my uncle today who told me premium is best for motorcycles and ethanol will prevent rust in the tank... hmmm?
Your owners manual will tell you what minimum octane to use.
As long as the octane of the fuel you use is equal to or above, you're fine.
Yes, you can use premium if you want, but unless you're running one
of the older Shadow's, it's not doing anything except emptying your wallet faster.
Yes, unless you have your bike sitting for long periods of time or have
fuel system clogs, there is no reason to run fuel additives.
Most of the fuel additives are nothing more than a detergent with
an octane booster (which does nothing for you if your engine isn't pinging).
Avoiding ethanol is a personal choice.
Running ethanol is fine, it won't hurt a thing.
You will notice a drop in MPG and a little power loss simply because
ethanol doesn't contain the same amount of energy potential as gasoline.
It's not a super power loss, but in many cases it is noticeable.
In older vehicles, it can cause problems.
Older vehicles actually have "rubber" seals which the alcohol affects.
Vehicles made within the last 20 years have seals made from Nitrile,
which is resistant to harsh chemicals and isn't bother by them.
No offense, but what your uncle told you about premium being best for "motorcycles" in general is bologna.
In *some* motorcycles, premium is needed because they run high advance ignition or run high compression.
The older Shadows (80's) use premium.
Modern Shadows (early 90's and up), premium is a waste of money.
The early 90's and up Shadows are low compression engines
and are generally not prone to pinging.
If you want to run premium, it won't hurt anything.
People will tell you that it burns slower and burns dirtier in engines
that aren't built for it... but they are wrong. It doesn't.
Octane has nothing to do with the burn speed or cleanliness of the gasoline.
Octane is nothing more than a resistance to detonation by heat.