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So yes, I'd love to get the reflash, but with the high and really undeterminable TOTAL cost for ME (as opposed to a more typical U.S. based buyer), and the hassles involved, I'm just having trouble justifying doing it. If the cost were lower, and also determinable in advance, I'd be tempted, just because I normally favour the BEST solution. But so far, there just seem to be too many obstacles to deal with to make it attractive to me. :(

Jim G



This is also why
Adding performance to a motorcycle is expensive. Before I put my bike on the dyno, I installed the Woolich Autolog. It was an epic piece of kit! My only problem was that I am not much of a computer person and in a short amount of time I realized that it was my poor learning curve keeping my bikes performance from reaching it's potential. With all that international shipping stuff going on and no way for a dyno and your persistence, that might be an excellent way to go. Either way, SBK and Duckman are fantastic resources, they live this stuff everyday. Oh, the cheapest solution would be to enjoy the bike stock, it still is a great bike that way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
. . . Oh, the cheapest solution would be to enjoy the bike stock, it still is a great bike that way.
Yes, I agree it is a GREAT bike even in purely stock form! And, after owning well over 55 other motorcycles during my lifetime, with the 19 lb i've taken off of it and the full exhaust, my Z400 is now my all-time favorite so far. The combination of light weight, small but adequate size, attractive styling, simple access for maintenance and washing, and more than adequate usable power in my Vancouver Island mountainous, restricted speed riding environment, it really is the ideal motorcycle for me right now. :)

Jim G
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Here is probably the best written explanation of how and why O2 sensors work I have find so far:


It was written by a pretty capable woman with a very interesting technical and travel background who loves motorcycles enough to learn a lot about them.

Note that she mentions that closed loop operation can apply sometimes even at 40% throttle, and note her comments on O2 eliminators.

Jim G
 

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Here is probably the best written explanation of how and why O2 sensors work I have find so far:


It was written by a pretty capable woman with a very interesting technical and travel background who loves motorcycles enough to learn a lot about them.

Note that she mentions that closed loop operation can apply sometimes even at 40% throttle, and note her comments on O2 eliminators.

Jim G
A very understandable article. Because I've eliminated the O2 sensor on my Z400, it's now running in open loop all the time. By the way, Dana is a man judging by his photo. Definitely running richer, mpg have gone down from 59 to 55.5 mpg. Eliminated the evap canister, pair valve, cat conv and 02 sensor. Stock ecu. Again, not to say I won't flash the ecu but it will be a custom tune on a dyno but my wife will have a say on the costs. For now my Z400 runs fantastic!
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
A very understandable article. Because I've eliminated the O2 sensor on my Z400, it's now running in open loop all the time. By the way, Dana is a man judging by his photo. Definitely running richer, mpg have gone down from 59 to 55.5 mpg. Eliminated the evap canister, pair valve, cat conv and 02 sensor. Stock ecu. Again, not to say I won't flash the ecu but it will be a custom tune on a dyno but my wife will have a say on the costs. For now my Z400 runs fantastic!
Sp you got a SIX percent reduction in fuel mileage? (55.5/59 = 0.94).

Do you ride more conservatively than me or more aggressively I wonder? My riding is pretty tame. Around town, I am rarely above 5500 - 6000 rpm, and same on the highway (low speed limits and draconian fines and other penalties for speeding), but i like to do full throttle acceleration from a highway stop. :)

Did you use Kawasaki brad's O2 Eliminator or a different one?

Is your Z400 a 2019 like mine, or ?

Do you have the RED KDS connector or a white one?

What exhaust are you running?

I figure that the olny way I'll do a reflash is when I prepare an order with Norton for the flash AND the intake kit (flash itself not enough bang for the buck), grit my teeth at the total cost, wait out the 2-way international shipping and border hassles, and then do the big disassembly and reassembly to swap the ECU. I'm afraid to total up the landed / taxed cost for all the above, as I suspect it will be too big a chunk of the bike's value and non-recoverable on resale!

OR, If I really again want to go faster, I can buy a 2nd bike here - a 2004-2006 ZX-6R or CBR 600F4 for about $3k Canadian, but the extra 85 b of bike weight is the negative, as are the 4-cylinder valve check/adjustment and the extra bodywork to work around. My lightened Z400 is a total joy on our narrow winding island roads. It'd be hard to find or build something better for this specific environment.

Jim G
 

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Sp you got a SIX percent reduction in fuel mileage? (55.5/59 = 0.94).

Do you ride more conservatively than me or more aggressively I wonder? My riding is pretty tame. Around town, I am rarely above 5500 - 6000 rpm, and same on the highway (low speed limits and draconian fines and other penalties for speeding), but i like to do full throttle acceleration from a highway stop. :)

Did you use Kawasaki brad's O2 Eliminator or a different one?

Is your Z400 a 2019 like mine, or ?

Do you have the RED KDS connector or a white one?

What exhaust are you running?

I figure that the olny way I'll do a reflash is when I prepare an order with Norton for the flash AND the intake kit (flash itself not enough bang for the buck), grit my teeth at the total cost, wait out the 2-way international shipping and border hassles, and then do the big disassembly and reassembly to swap the ECU. I'm afraid to total up the landed / taxed cost for all the above, as I suspect it will be too big a chunk of the bike's value and non-recoverable on resale!

OR, If I really again want to go faster, I can buy a 2nd bike here - a 2004-2006 ZX-6R or CBR 600F4 for about $3k Canadian, but the extra 85 b of bike weight is the negative, as are the 4-cylinder valve check/adjustment and the extra bodywork to work around. My lightened Z400 is a total joy on our narrow winding island roads. It'd be hard to find or build something better for this specific environment.

Jim G
FYI, pulling the ECU is not that big of a job and if you give Norton a deposit, I am sure he will send you a flashed ECU for you to swap out so you don't have to get in there twice. It is a bit of a pain reaching everything but it is not hard and does not take very long.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
FYI, pulling the ECU is not that big of a job and if you give Norton a deposit, I am sure he will send you a flashed ECU for you to swap out so you don't have to get in there twice. It is a bit of a pain reaching everything but it is not hard and does not take very long.
I've actually got a spare ECU that I got for a good price many months ago, so I would only need to get the bike disassembled once.

The biggest things holding me back on doing the reflash are:

- The sheer hassle for reasons stated above in this thread

- Not enough bang for the buck if I do ONLY the reflash (I've gotten almost all the power with just the exhaust)

- Adding the Norton intake mods apparently ups the extra power notably. But the cost of doing both the reflash and the intake mods (about $850CDN landed taxed, etc) gets high enough that it makes me at least wonder if getting a 2nd bike, a 2004 to 2006 ZX6-R, or a CBR 600F4i, for about $3000 CDN, might be a better idea, since the future further depreciation on either of those bikes would likely be lower than the total cost of the further modding of the Z400, and the modding cost on the Z400 would be unrecoverable on resale. I can get a decent example of either of those 600 bikes and have way more suspension adjustability along with way more power. As the old saying goes, the lowest cost way to go faster is to just buy a bike with a stronger OEM engine, but the extra 85 lb of bike (430 lb wet vs my current 345 lb wet) is a big negative to me personally.

Lots to think about.

Jim G
 

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I've actually got a spare ECU that I got for a good price many months ago, so I would only need to get the bike disassembled once.

The biggest things holding me back on doing the reflash are:

- The sheer hassle for reasons stated above in this thread

- Not enough bang for the buck if I do ONLY the reflash (I've gotten almost all the power with just the exhaust)

- Adding the Norton intake mods apparently ups the extra power notably. But the cost of doing both the reflash and the intake mods (about $850CDN landed taxed, etc) gets high enough that it makes me at least wonder if getting a 2nd bike, a 2004 to 2006 ZX6-R, or a CBR 600F4i, for about $3000 CDN, might be a better idea, since the future further depreciation on either of those bikes would likely be lower than the total cost of the further modding of the Z400, and the modding cost on the Z400 would be unrecoverable on resale. I can get a decent example of either of those 600 bikes and have way more suspension adjustability along with way more power. As the old saying goes, the lowest cost way to go faster is to just buy a bike with a stronger OEM engine, but the extra 85 lb of bike (430 lb wet vs my current 345 lb wet) is a big negative to me personally.

Lots to think about.

Jim G
Jim, you are totally missing what a good flash can do for you. It's not about max hp. Not at all. It's about making the bike run right under every condition. Especially if you've done other modifications like an exhaust. You just can't imaging the difference it can make. Now, this is the only time I'm going to talk about this. If you are too hard headed to listen then go ahead and carry on doing and thinking what you want.

When you start down the road of building a bike the way you want you will never get back the money you put into it. Consider the cost like going to dinner and a movie to get laid. Pfft. I've put about $15K into my 2018 N400 and I'm still running those **** heavy stock wheels. LOL. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Jim, you are totally missing what a good flash can do for you. It's not about max hp. Not at all. It's about making the bike run right under every condition. Especially if you've done other modifications like an exhaust. You just can't imaging the difference it can make. Now, this is the only time I'm going to talk about this. If you are too hard headed to listen then go ahead and carry on doing and thinking what you want.

When you start down the road of building a bike the way to want you will never get back the money you put into it. Consider the cost like going to dinner and a movie to get laid. Pfft. I've put about $15K into my 2018 N400 and I'm still running those **** heavy stock wheels. LOL. :)
Yeah, it's an addiction worse than any opiod. :)

Jim G
 

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Here is probably the best written explanation of how and why O2 sensors work I have find so far:


It was written by a pretty capable woman with a very interesting technical and travel background who loves motorcycles enough to learn a lot about them.

Note that she mentions that closed loop operation can apply sometimes even at 40% throttle, and note her comments on O2 eliminators.

Jim G
How do you know the author is a pretty capable woman? The author, Dana Hooshmand, is a guy first of all lol

Edit: [email protected] Bantam beat me to it. I didn't see he mentioned the same thing as well lol
 

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Jim, you are totally missing what a good flash can do for you. It's not about max hp. Not at all. It's about making the bike run right under every condition. Especially if you've done other modifications like an exhaust. You just can't imaging the difference it can make. Now, this is the only time I'm going to talk about this. If you are too hard headed to listen then go ahead and carry on doing and thinking what you want.

When you start down the road of building a bike the way you want you will never get back the money you put into it. Consider the cost like going to dinner and a movie to get laid. Pfft. I've put about $15K into my 2018 N400 and I'm still running those **** heavy stock wheels. LOL. :)
I was just about to say the same. I LOL'd when i read the comment about resale value. We're talking about motorcycles not houses or stocks! Lol I've got over $15k in my 400 and i started with a salvage bike and I'm not including the extra set of wheels. If i put it up for sale i would be happy to get like $7000 with the extra wheels!

There's plenty of dyno testing data out there that shows putting on a full exhaust without a tune leans our your bike by a decent amount. Not good for it in the long run.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
How do you know the author is a pretty capable woman? The author, Dana Hooshmand, is a guy first of all lol

Edit: [email protected] Bantam beat me to it. I didn't see he mentioned the same thing as well lol
I had read his bio, but had never looked at a photo! I guess I just assumed that a first name that ends in an "a" is female! :)

Jim G
 

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Hi Jim,

If you want to actually gain control of your fueling and more, get the FT ECU bike side setup and play to your hearts content. I installed the setup and it gives you total control of pretty much everything. I also was aware of the ecu's ability to store 2 maps and switch between them on the fly by grounding a wire. Learned that here on this forum!
BTW MAS Cycle service in Langley B.C. has a dyno as far as I know. So hop on the ferry!
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
Hi Jim,

If you want to actually gain control of your fueling and more, get the FT ECU bike side setup and play to your hearts content. I installed the setup and it gives you total control of pretty much everything. I also was aware of the ecu's ability to store 2 maps and switch between them on the fly by grounding a wire. Learned that here on this forum!
BTW MAS Cycle service in Langley B.C. has a dyno as far as I know. So hop on the ferry!
Some issues with that solution:

  • I am not a qualified engine tuner
  • I run a MacBook Air, not a PC, and I believe FT ECU requires a PC

And last time I checked, a couple of places on the mainland, and even one here on The Island, advertised that they do dyno tuning, but actually do not. The dyno here on The Island exists, but has been out of commission for at least 5 years because the shop can't afford to repair it! (No kidding). Another one on The Mainland only does Harleys, "not them Jap bikes". And the way the ferry system is running right now, I wouldn't actually be able to do a there-and-back and get a dyno tune done in one day.

When the ferry system was actually running more trips per day, and on schedule, I used to go to a shop on the mainland to get things done that I could not do myself, but that took an entire day even then. Now, I live further inland on The Island than I did then, and the eferrys have been having ots of schedule delays and cancellations. COVID wiped out much of their revenue, so they are having vessel reliability problems and serious crew shortages that are delaying and cancelling scheduled trips. A friend of mine got stuck on the mainland recently by a cancellation and had to pay $250 for a hotel plus meals and lost a good chunk of the next day. Plus he had to leave a customized and hotrodded $80,000 Harley in an open hotel parking lot overnight.

I now use a shop here on The Island for stuff I can't do, but they have no dyno and no trained tuner either. :(

It's quite a contrast to what I had when I lived in Texas. The local HD shop has a dyno and 2 trained tuners (they only did Harleys, but that's what I had for 3 years). The Lozano brothers were only 55 miles away, and Micah Shoemaker (AF-1 Racing) was maybe 60 miles away. Mike Lozano and Micah personally tuned a few bikes for me. I was in dyno and skilled tuner heaven. :)

Jim G
 

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Here's the really sad part: that $80,000.00 invested harley still would not beat a stock Z400:)
 

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Some issues with that solution:

  • I am not a qualified engine tuner
  • I run a MacBook Air, not a PC, and I believe FT ECU requires a PC

And last time I checked, a couple of places on the mainland, and even one here on The Island, advertised that they do dyno tuning, but actually do not. The dyno here on The Island exists, but has been out of commission for at least 5 years because the shop can't afford to repair it! (No kidding). Another one on The Mainland only does Harleys, "not them Jap bikes". And the way the ferry system is running right now, I wouldn't actually be able to do a there-and-back and get a dyno tune done in one day.

When the ferry system was actually running more trips per day, and on schedule, I used to go to a shop on the mainland to get things done that I could not do myself, but that took an entire day even then. Now, I live further inland on The Island than I did then, and the eferrys have been having ots of schedule delays and cancellations. COVID wiped out much of their revenue, so they are having vessel reliability problems and serious crew shortages that are delaying and cancelling scheduled trips. A friend of mine got stuck on the mainland recently by a cancellation and had to pay $250 for a hotel plus meals and lost a good chunk of the next day. Plus he had to leave a customized and hotrodded $80,000 Harley in an open hotel parking lot overnight.

I now use a shop here on The Island for stuff I can't do, but they have no dyno and no trained tuner either. :(

It's quite a contrast to what I had when I lived in Texas. The local HD shop has a dyno and 2 trained tuners (they only did Harleys, but that's what I had for 3 years). The Lozano brothers were only 55 miles away, and Micah Shoemaker (AF-1 Racing) was maybe 60 miles away. Mike Lozano and Micah personally tuned a few bikes for me. I was in dyno and skilled tuner heaven. :)

Jim G
You must have been in the San Antonio area?
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
You must have been in the San Antonio area?
Austin, actually. We lived in the southwest suburban area of Austin ("Texas Hill Country" area), so I could even entirely avoid the city traffic when visiting Micah, Mike, or Cowboy Harley-Davidson.

Jim G
 

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Austin, actually. We lived in the southwest suburban area of Austin ("Texas Hill Country" area), so I could even entirely avoid the city traffic when visiting Micah, Mike, or Cowboy Harley-Davidson.

Jim G
Miss the three twisted sisters?
 
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