Japanese 2-stroke -OR- 4-stroke for 700 Mile, One-Way Ride?

Discussion in 'Travelling, Commuting & Safety' started by sparky, Jan 4, 2011.


For my trip, should I go with:

  1. 2-STROKE

    7 vote(s)
  2. 4-STROKE

    29 vote(s)
  1. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    I only have a 33cc Chinese 2-stroke now (*not* an HT, tho) and a 33cc Subaru 4-stroke (never used yet)... but for the sack of discussion, let's just say this is the 33cc Mitsubishi -VS- the 33cc Subaru --

    Here's some guesstimates I'm pulling out of thin air, [incorrectly] based only on the Chinese 2-stroke...

    700 mi / 22 mph = 31.82 hours
    700 mi / 160 mpg = 4.38 gallons && 4 oz oil

    700 mi / 27 mph = 25.93 hours
    700 mi / 90 mpg = 7.78 gallons @ 32:1 (gas:eek:il) = 31 oz oil

    SOOO.... Basically, the 4-stroke would take an extra day of traveling! But almost half the gas and A LOT less oil for the round trip (8 oz -vs- 64 oz, or a 1/2 gallon).

    The only problem is... can a 4-stroke really handle a 700 Mi ride like this?? ... or should there only be a problem if it's WOT the whole time. I'm almost leaning toward the 2-stroke if only or the fact that I have this option to hold it WOT all day long, and I'll save about 5 hours overall, even if I do have to mix the gas.

    What's your thoughts?

  2. Virginian

    Virginian Member

    I have a Tanaka 32cc and it gets roughly 130 to 140 mpg with the throttle wide open most of the time. So perhaps your estimate of 2-stroke mpg is a little low.

    But your estimate on 27 mph may be a little high. At full throttle, my MB cruises at 30-32 mph on the flat. In spite of almost always riding at full throttle, I rarely average more than 25 mph. Average speed is reduced by traffic lights, stop signs, rough roads, turns, hills, and traffic getting in the way.
  3. Slackbiker

    Slackbiker Member

    "Can a 4-stroke really handle a 700 Mi ride like this??"
    Well I probably don't ride my engine as hard as you, but i don't know exactly what you mean by "like this".
    My 3 year old friction drive kit (with 33cc Subaru 4 stroke), helped me get from ABQ to Stanley, ID (~2,000 miles round trip), with numerous side trips and back and forths (Total mileage ~4,000??), but with some regional buses (like through the megalopolis of Salt Lake). But it was a bike tour with tour gear over several months, and I peddle a lot, but use the engine on the tough stuff (some 10,000 ft passes and some 10% grades over the years), though sometimes I must peddle along or the engine will power out. Engine is still good, with minimal maintenance.
    Sound like you want to go 700 miles in 6 days. My biggest day ever is 95 miles. I don't think you need to go WOT all day, i've probably done a max of 3 hours, across the Plains of San Agustin into a 45 mile headwind. I'm not sure if the rumor about 4 strokes needing a rest is true, I need a rest more than my bike or engine does, but sometimes, like downhill, I can go faster without the motor, so you could give your motor some breaks that way.
    I almost always camp for free, but if you're staying in motels, then an extra days lodging would cancel 3 gallons of gas and a little extra oil.
    If you're going over hilly terrain, and don't want to peddle, then take the 2-stroke, for the extra power.
    I pretty much take it easy on my rig, though I have gone hundreds of miles on Forest Roads over the years. I powered out my 4-stroke a few times early in the learning curve, probably not cool. If you're really hard on your engines, then go with the 2-stroke, probably not as expensive to fix, or trash.
    Ultimately some people (not saying you) should switch to a scooter or dirt bike for the higher performance. One time I met a punk rock girl who rode a scooter from Pennsylvania to the Pacific (and back i assume), she was doing 200 mile days.
  4. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    Well.. I forgot to mention I've only got 20" tires!!

    I can hit 30-33 mph @ WOT on the flats with no problem (haven't clocked it in over a year, tho)... but if I had the same engine & gearing on a 29" tire -- BOY, I'd prolly be able to double my speed!! ... or at least hit 55!

    Yup... I figure about 5 hours a day of riding should be about right.

    FOUR-BANGER~~ 5 * 22 = 110 mi
    TWO-WANGER~~ 5 * 27 = 135 mi

    And, no motels for me thanks. I'll be camping for free, myself. Hammocks are a win-win-win situation for a long-distance MB trip!!
  5. ibdennyak

    ibdennyak Guest

    Not much to add to the virginians post, other than the RS will run WOT for 700 miles wiith its spark plug tied behind its cowling. Mileage and speed sound about right. In 700 miles, you will lose more time in general maintenance than engine maintenance. (flats-chain adjustments-etc. )

    I have limited experience with 2 atrokes (Tecumseh 49cc, monster scooter Chinese clone, and Ryobi 31cc) but believe any of those would make it too. Mileage on the Tecumseh is about 80-90, and I haven't checked the others.

    Cargomaster and Augidog use the little Tanaka, and they are bullet proof IMO.

    Hope that adds to your knowledge base.
  6. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    Hmm.... I don't think I included a 50 to 60 lbs backpack in my calculations.

    That's prolly a 4 mph and 10~20 mpg right there.
  7. 5-7HEAVEN

    5-7HEAVEN Guest

    You are not going to hit 55mph with your underpowered bike and 26" tires. MAYBE 35mph with 26" wheels.
  8. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    26" != 29"

    If I can hit 30 mph with 20" tires....


    3.14 * (20) = 62.8
    3.14 * (29) = 91.06

    91.06 / 62.8 = 45% increase


    30 * 1.45 = 43.5 mph with a 33cc motor

    I incorrectly did Pi * r^2 first time around instead of Pi * diameter, to get such a larger ratio. But still... 43 mph with a 33cc motor is pretty intense. Don't think I could ever ride a bicycle in excess of 50 mph like kerf can!! I'm pretty sure breaking 40 could be a reality with a nearly 50% increase in tire diameter.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2011
  9. give me vtec

    give me vtec Active Member

    Spanky... The eho35 is bulletproof. I own a few and wouldn't hesitate to take one on a 700 mile trip.

    IMO the four stroke would be better because you can run pump gas straight from the gas station.... No oil mix needed makes things simpler.

    Where are you going to ride 700 miles??? Is there some sort of chomsky convention or something you gotta see???
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2011
  10. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    I've got one, but I haven't put it on yet. Finally got my bike welded together with some extra reinforcement after the cheap Chinese frame cracked on me a while back. Took my buddy a LONG time to get around to doing it for me, but whatever...

    First thing I did when I got the bike was start overhauling the crank and rear hub. The thing rides smoother than ever, and that's what got me thinking about just taking off and not stopping for a few days.

    I wish I would've made a poll for this thread. Can I get a little help from a mod??

    I think the best thing going for the four stroke is that I'd be obligated to chill out instead of try to set a world record for "the littlest bike that could". But I LOVE the sound, the feeling, & the adrenaline rush of my 2-stroke!!! :tt1:

    Poll, please?

    Shh.... They're watching!! Can't let 'em know where I'm really headed.
  11. professor

    professor Active Member

    Sparky, do you really think you are going to be going 10 mph faster than the larger HT with a lot more weight (gear and stuff) than they carry?
    What Vtec said- no gas and oil to mix with the 4 cycle.
  12. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    All my original calculations were including necessary stops, slow downs, & maintenance (of which there really shouldn't be too many on my bike; there's no derailers and I haven't gotten a flat since lining both sides of my tubes)... but not the extra 50 lbs of weight. I'm not sure how to calculate that, but I think if I put all my tools, clothes, & hammock gear in a backpack... it wouldn't slow the 2-stroke down but 1 or 2 mph. I think 50 lbs is an extremely conservative number. The actual weight should be closer to 20~25 lbs, I'd think.
  13. Virginian

    Virginian Member

    Not really. At a typical MB top speed (30 mph) on the flat, almost all the power is used for overcoming air resistance. Weight is not an important factor. The only time weight is important is climbing hills and accelerating from a stop.

    In other words, adding 50 pounds will not significantly decrease your top speed, although your speed going up hills will decrease.
  14. wbuttry

    wbuttry Member

    hey sparky you might also wanna consider a pull trailer from walmart the one you put kids in it would hold all your stuff and extra parts in case of bad weather and you know you will be taking murphys law with you weather you want him or not but if you got everything mounted securely all your nutts and bolts loctited and extra chain llinks tire and tube patches it will be fine go just watch the wot none of the motors really like it much and be safe
  15. sparky

    sparky Active Member


    There's just something about the trailer that I'm not a fan of. But now that I think about it, it would make it harder for somebody to jack my ride. That's for sure!!

    As for weather, I was really just banking on using my cell phone to check the radar every half-hour or so. I always know when it's gonna rain, so long as I can see the radar and wind velocity. Cell phone would also be used for GPS every once in awhile. And considering it's such an important tool, I'd have to bring a spare one just in case! And a copy or two of all my phone numbers in my wallet & pack.

    My hammock setup w/ "bug sock" & tarp only weighs about 3 lbs all together!! It only takes a few minutes to set up, but maybe I should consider an 11 lbs pop-up tent instead. Takes a minute to set up and I can make new lady friends, too!! :cool:
  16. wbuttry

    wbuttry Member

    see most of those trailers im speaking of will carry 50 to 70 pounds worth of equipment . plus like you said you could carry a bigger shelter. i got a couple 2 person tents and they only hold one person so i bought a four person and it holds up a lot better. by the way how fast you wanting to finish this trip? it sounds like you are in a hurry to go and get back going to see family or something similar not trying to be nosey?
  17. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    I'm not leaving 'til at least late March or April.

    And, thinking about it while riding my rippin' 2-stroke today, I probly will go with the 4-stroke if only to slow down and enjoy the ride. So that right there almost answers the question... not to mention the oil I'll save and won't have to mix.

    Only thing I really have to do to prepare is really just add a 1 gallon tank to my baby... and I'd be set.
  18. wbuttry

    wbuttry Member

    well sparky im in missouri if u get this way holler im in the boot heel section a town called sikeston well would a full size motorcycle tank fit your bike with a few mods or maybe you could carry to half gallon tanks put you a front rack on your bike and mount it and t off both tanks to your carb biggest ank i've seen so far is 3 liters but i really havent been looking that hard if i go any where im taking my trailer and carrying a extra gallon jug for fuel in a plastic bag so i dont get fuel everywhere if spills
  19. Dave C

    Dave C Member

    American Power Sports has a bunch of tanks for gokarts clear up to an 8 liter tank that would go on a back rack pretty good. I have seen on eBay 4 liter tanks for under $30.
  20. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    I think 4 to 5 liters is the hotspot for me.

    I had something more like the gas cans that you can buy from Dollar General, Family Dollar, Fred's, etc. for about $4.... in mind..

    Just add a hole and a rubber "grommet" and you should be good to go.


    I just don't know where to get those rubber grommets, tho. I'm guessing any auto parts house, but dunno for sure.