Ethanol vs Non Ethanol Fuel - 2018 KTM 790 Duke Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-07-2020, 10:07 PM Thread Starter
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Ethanol vs Non Ethanol Fuel

Here in Florida, we have many gas stations that offer a non ethanol fuel option. We also have options for higher octane race fuel. Has anyone tested their 790 Duke with Non Ethanol or Race Fuel? If so, is there a noticeable difference?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-08-2020, 04:21 AM
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I have not tried. BUT I seriously doubt that a modern motor that runs on the knife edge of lean by design and electronic control will benefit at all.

The slower burn of Higher octane can help on LONG stroke engines and where the compression ratio leads to detonation. But lower octane fuels actually have a higher calorific content (it's chemistry).

Ethanol however is a PITA - it can lead to early demise of some rubber parts.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-08-2020, 11:47 AM
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I routinely run my bike on ethanol-free gas, as it's readily available in Vancouver, and costs the same as ethanol based equivalents It became a habit when I owned my Aprilia, because that bike's gas tank was plastic, and ethanol causes plastic tanks to deform. I think I only ever ran one tank of ethanol gas when riding in Washington State, where ethanol-free gas is hard to get. And there was no difference at all in terms of engine performance. I'm sure it would be the same for the 790.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-09-2020, 12:32 AM
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I used to run ethanol-free in my Triumph street triple. It kinda felt like it ran smoother, but wasn't a huge difference for me to care
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-30-2020, 02:17 AM
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I live in EA WA close to the ID border where you can readily buy non ethanol premium. I’ve used it frequently and see no difference in performance or mileage. If I am a station that offers it I’ll use it but I don’t go out of my way to look for it.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-31-2020, 10:03 AM
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I run 93 octane in my bikes.

I buy non-ethanol to fill my gas cans, which in turn fuel my lawn tools (tractor, lawn mower, leaf blower, generator, etc). It's not as much about running well, but ethanol absorbs water and turns to goo that really messes with small carburetors, especially when sitting for long periods of time.

There's a reason they call non-ethanol "boat gas" down here in Florida. Ethanol is terrible for boats for the same reasons and also water builds up in the fuel tank.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Unread Today, 12:22 PM
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I can't stand ethanol. It clogs carbs on my dirt bikes!
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Unread Today, 12:46 PM
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We have a few stations in Victoria BC that have ethanol-free 91, even preferred over our 94 by tuners on the dyno with turbo cars. I'd run that 91 in my DR650 with a plastic tank, it's only 8.5:1 but I don't want the aftermarket pumper carb to suffer ethanol. 87 in that air-cooled pig detonates in traffic in the summer. I'll put whatever 91 in the 790 when in a pinch, but ethanol-free is always my choice.
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