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2017 R1200R
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15% ethanol top tier gas is appearing in my local station. I do have access to non ethanol (non top tier) 93 gas. Thoughts on which is better appreciated? I use stabil additive to reduce impact of ethanol so could up that dose a bit plus the bike is run weekly but, I live in central Texas so humidity is high so water vapor will get into the fuel fairly easily.
Thanks...incidentally, surprised that nobody else has asked about the move to 15%. Saw earlier thread about 10% and agree with the comment about the whole thing being a scam to benefit big farmers at the expense of food production and my boat and bike engines!
 

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This from a European spec bike owners manual. We have only just gone from 5 to 10% Ethanol in the UK.
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...and agree with the comment about the whole thing being a scam to benefit big farmers at the expense of food production...
The corn grown for ethanol production isn't food-grade corn to begin with. Not only that, the but the corn "waste" from ethanol production becomes feed for livestock.

Info from the US manual:
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Dave in NE TN USA
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I recommend using the fuel octane specified in the owner's manual. Lower only if it's the only thing available, higher is a waste of money and provides no benefit.

I also recommend using non-ethanol rather than ethanol whenever possible.

Best, Dave
 

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Just checked my manual, and it says 'premium recommended'... BUT it says 89, which is basically the mid-grade in the US. Premium is always 91 or 93. Then it says 'alternative' fuel regular 87. Both with a maximum of 15% ethanol. How does the bike run with regular? And do we have to use premium, or mid-grade 89 is what we should use? I've always used premium, which is 91 around here (93 in most other states). And since it's freaking 70 cents more expensive per gallon here (vs 10 or 20 elsewhere), no need to waste my money if 89 (35 cents more than regular) is all the bike needs. Thanks gang.
 

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If you can avoid using ethanol of any percentage I would do it, ethanol is not good for bikes.
 

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As pictured above, my 2016's manual also indicates 89 AKI (USA) or 95 ROZ/RON (most other countries). The two numbers are just different methods of measuring the same thing; the end result is the same.

Anything higher is burning money. I'll admit I was surprised though when I got the bike; I expected a modern relatively high-output engine to require premium fuel. I guess the 1200 doesn't have too high a compression ratio; has that changed for the 1250?

As another data point, I run 88 AKI ethanol-free fuel exclusively in my bike, so one point less than recommended. However, I also live at 4500 ft (1400 m) so we can get away with lower octane in general. My bike runs great and I can easily get north of 50 MPG if I try (but realistically I get closer to 45 because I love the throttle too much :p )

Ethanol is bad for gasoline engines, period. It works well in high compression engines that have been designed for it, but mixes poorly with gasoline. As an example, the BMW E90 community will often run blends close to 50%, but those engines are turbocharged with large amounts of resulting compression. Basically, ethanol is a cheap octane rating boost.

That being said, ethanol is not worth it and is a waste of everyone's time. I won't get into the food or farmer incentive parts, but from a pure physics perspective ethanol contains less potential energy than gasoline. While it may burn cleaner than pure gas, any advantage is more than offset by an accompanying reduction in fuel mileage, and power. The mentioned E90 group has to install higher-flowing pumps to get more fuel to the engine. It's additionally carbon-intensive to produce. I understand the current desire to try to reduce prices at the pump, but this isn't going to actually help anything.

To avoid talking out my butt, here's a recent article examining the impact of ethanol with links to research: Corn ethanol no better—and probably worse—than burning gasoline, study says | Ars Technica
 

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Dave in NE TN USA
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Ethanol mostly follows the political science. Any specific benefits are significantly outweighed by the overall costs.

Best, Dave
 
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Both R1200s and R1250s have a 12.5:1 compression ratio. Although considered high, it's no longer a requirement for premium fuel, since many modern vehicles with N/A engines have up to 13:1, and only require regular fuel. It's more how stressed the engine is, and I don't think it's too much on our bikes (109HP/liter). At any rate, I live at almost 4K' of altitude, so even regular 87 might be all my bike needs at this altitude. It calls for 89, but that's probably what regular is at sea level, no? But seems like straight premium is not needed then (mid-grade is a mix between regular and premium; there's no such grade per say). I'm not a cheap skate with my bikes, so I'm a bit confused what to do with that. Ha ha. Will keep reading, before making a final decision. But will keep using premium until I have enough info not to do so. By the way, I hardly ever use WOT anymore, so that's another factor.
 

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I'm going to throw a wrench into the discussion :)
My 2016 R1200 manual recommended 89 AKI.
Look how they show it in my 2022 R1250 manual.
It shows 89 and 90 AKI. I wonder if the 90 is a misprint.

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I'm going to throw a wrench into the discussion :)
My 2016 R1200 manual recommended 89 AKI.
Look how they show it in my 2022 R1250 manual.
It shows 89 and 90 AKI. I wonder if the 90 is a misprint.

View attachment 115333
When I download a 2020 R1250 manual it shows 90 AKI as the recommended fuel.
 

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When I download a 2020 R1250 manual it shows 90 AKI as the recommended fuel.
My 2020 R1250R manual is EXACTLY like your 2022 (page 273 -the last page), stating both 89 and 90, and 87/87, as an alternative, so I'd say definitely a misprint since at least 2020. But 'super unleaded' has always been 91 or higher, so quite confusing. At any rate, which grade of fuel do you use Lee? Premium? Thx.
 

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My 2020 R1250R manual is EXACTLY like your 2022 (page 273 -the last page), stating both 89 and 90, and 87/87, as an alternative, so I'd say definitely a misprint since at least 2020. But 'super unleaded' has always been 91 or higher, so quite confusing. At any rate, which grade of fuel do you use Lee? Premium? Thx.
When we had the 1200s and now the 1250s I always use 91 AKI when in Iowa because it does not have ethanol at most, if not all stations in Iowa.
Iowa by law has standard labels on the pumps so you always know which fuels have ethanol.
On trips a lot of pumps are not clearly marked. If I can't tell if the 91 is ethanol free I'll use 89 AKI.

Here's a couple of examples how pumps are labeled in Iowa. The prices are 3 years old.
In the midwest Super Unleaded usually means there's there's ethanol in the 87 AKI.
Don't get hung up on the name, always go by the AKI number in the US.
I wish every state clearly marked pumps like this.
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Mark – Moderator 2015 R1200R-LC Exclusive
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Looks like they are still giving petrol away in the states, £2.28 a gallon, it's over £7 here.
Don’t forget that their gallons are smaller than yours, @mjgt . But still relatively cheap.
 

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Don’t forget that their gallons are smaller than yours, @mjgt . But still relatively cheap.
Long live the metric system...
Where all liters are equal and all meters are equal everywhere ;)
 
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Looks like they are still giving petrol away in the states, £2.28 a gallon, it's over £7 here.
You must have missed the part about the pictures being 3 years old.
 
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