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Author Topic: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training  (Read 10224 times)

Kevin Mahoney

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New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« on: February 04, 2008, 01:36:20 AM »
Jim, Tim, Tait and I were in Germany last week for training on the new UCE engine and it's electronic ignition system. I will write more in our upcoming newsletter (which is free and you can subscribe here) - http://www.enfieldmotorcycles.com/subscribe.html
The training was very good and was put on by three fellows from the factory who were very knowledgable. There have been some questions about an owners ability to continue to tinker with and maintain his/her own bike with the new engine (UCE for Unit construction engine) and the electronic fuel injection (EFI) system. The EFI is made by Kehein which is a first class Japanese company. Their stuff is known to be Bullet proof (sorry I couldn't resist) and extremely reliable. It is a closed system which is normally bad news for home mechanics. A closed system means that the "brain" is an electronic module which receives input from several engine sensors and adjusts the fuel and timing accordingly. These systems normally require a very expensive computer based tool to diagnoses prooblems. While the very expensive tool (like $1500 ) is available to do the job, Royal Enfield did something very unique. They insisted that Kehein design a diagnostic system into the EFI that the home mechanic is capable of using with almost no training whatsoever. Basically, a wire from the EFI "brain" is run to ground and the ignition is turned on. The "check engine light" which is common to all closed loop systems then blinks in different sequences depending upon what is wrong with the system. You can figure out what is wrong is 5 minutes or less. Most, if not all other manufactureres do not provide this feature so that you have to take your bike to a dealer for diagnosis and repair. These systems very seldom require service, but when they do, the ability to check it accurately yourself can save you a lot of time, trouble, and save a lot of money. They provided the home-fix system in recognition of the fact that most of our customers like to do their own maintenance. As an aside, the UCE should be even easier to work on than the current Bullet engine as it has marginally less moving parts. As I said earlier, more later in the newsletter, but the information we got was really good news for those of us who like to tinker ourselves. We will still have a bike that we can easily work on ourselves.

Eamon

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2008, 07:40:42 AM »
That sounds fantastic.  I'm quite excited to see the first model to use this new engine!
Sounds like the diagnostic procedure is quite simple.  It's nice to know an expensive tool won't be necessary to get a basic diagnostic.

Eamon
Eamon in Seattle
2006 Bullet 500 Deluxe
http://www.sterlingloons.com

jdrouin

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2008, 02:05:26 PM »
Thanks for all this great info, Kevin. Do you envision the UCE engine being fitted to the Classic? Any idea when we'll see pics of this new "1940s" model?

Jeff

Jerry

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2008, 04:34:41 PM »
Three cheers to RE for respecting the customers who will buy their products !!!

It seems most companies now days use "bottom line logic" when designing their products.  RE's willingness to add the cost of the self-diagnostic system to their product illustrates (to me anyway) that the people making decisions in the company actually take the time to try to understand their customers.  I think it would have been easily justifiable to omit the self-diagnostic system and the kick starter if cost of production was the primary factor in the design.  As I get older I seem to get more cynical so this really caught me by surprise.  Hopefully they will sell enough of them to validate their decision. 

Thanks Kevin for the update.

                                                        Jerry

prof_stack

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2008, 08:20:45 PM »
Thanks Kevin!

Question came to mind about your meeting in Germany.  Where will the major components of the UCE engine be manufactured?  Besides the aforementioned injection system.

gumshoe4

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2008, 06:16:57 AM »
Since this new engine is obviously designed to meet Euro emissions standards, any hope of having this engine be certified for California, so we can start getting REs here?  I'd really like a military/sidecar rig....

Bob

cyrusb

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2008, 01:41:54 AM »
I would like to point out that even though you can determine your problem in a few minutes, your still stuck, and probably still need a trailer. Time will tell . If it is reliable thats great. If not, I'm sure the Points and Carb upgrade will be available.

HRAB

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2008, 04:31:09 PM »
Addressing the questions about what the bike will be:
There is a lot we still do not know about the new bike. And, a little bit we need to keep close to the chest (because changes could be make).

The questions about the self diagnosis and what it might mean if there is a problem on the road are still pretty open. However, I have some small experience with BMW's and their "Brain". The warning indicators and diagnosis will indicate a problem and the system will default to a "safe mode". It will allow the bike to run, albiet not efficiently or well, it will get you home.

The engineers presenting at the conference said this system does infact default to a safe mode in the event of a sensor or component malfunction.

The question of sales in California was asked. The quick answer is: we hope so. The bike will be tested and documented when it is available to us. The results will be presented to the powers that be in "Cali", and we will hope for the best.

As to the design... If Kevin knows more than we do, he's not tellin'.
jim
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(Formerly) CRA# 118N www.cra-mn.com (I got smarter in old age)

rural earl

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2008, 02:46:21 AM »
Put me down as supporting the RE-UCE engine as a California-approved model.  There's too much market on the left coast to let us slide anymore.  CARB approval could make RE's nut in the US.  I should be ready for one when the UCE is ready for the US.  I'm DROOLING here!

Theeric

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2008, 11:53:46 PM »
I suppose the UCE RE has:

1.   Electric fuel pump
2.   O2 sensor
3.   Throttle body/injector
4.   Computer
5.   Wiring harness, etc.

Sounds like an opportunity to sell an upgrade kit for the “old style” and AVL models. Though I love carbureted engines, fuel injection is a more efficient fuel delivery system (I know I know – Blasphemy!) It would be a way to get an extra 2 to 3 hp (maybe more) while getting another 5 mpg. You could change exhaust systems at random with no concern about computing jetting (of course they would have to be sold with sensor port). And as long as the system did not require “post cat” monitoring, you would have one heck-of-a reliable old style Bullet. Add the smaller counter sprag and you could market it as the New Gen. Highway Kit (I’d buy it). Get the thing CARB and Cali-approved (with catalytic exhaust of course) and our friends on the Pac-coast could enjoy the old style RE like the rest of us (they’d buy it).
Nemo me impune lacesset

birdmove

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2008, 01:11:03 AM »
    I keep hearing that fuel injection is more efficient and gives better gas mileage-I'm not so sure thats always true.The new, redesigned Kawasaki Ninja 250 seems to be getting les gas mileage.The HD Sportsters seem to be getting less gas mileage than the earlier card'd modles. I had a 1984 HD XLX1000 Sportster that I left 100% stock, and that bike used to average about 65 miles per US gallon.Many of the new FI HD 883s seem to be getting 45-50 or so.The 1200s mostly less.Fuel injectiond adds lots of complexity and if you have a problems with it, its usually tow time.With a carb, you mey be able to fix it on the spot.Also, with the FI (at least on the HDs), you get a bunch of crap like fuel pumps,wiring,sensors stuffed up inside your fuel tank.You lose the reserve, and gain an almost always wildly innacurate fuel gauge or warning light.
    Jon
    2007 500 Bullet Classic
Jon in Keaau, Hawaii

hutch

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2008, 01:09:22 PM »
    I keep hearing that fuel injection is more efficient and gives better gas mileage-I'm not so sure thats always true.The new, redesigned Kawasaki Ninja 250 seems to be getting les gas mileage.The HD Sportsters seem to be getting less gas mileage than the earlier card'd modles. I had a 1984 HD XLX1000 Sportster that I left 100% stock, and that bike used to average about 65 miles per US gallon.Many of the new FI HD 883s seem to be getting 45-50 or so.The 1200s mostly less.Fuel injectiond adds lots of complexity and if you have a problems with it, its usually tow time.With a carb, you mey be able to fix it on the spot.Also, with the FI (at least on the HDs), you get a bunch of crap like fuel pumps,wiring,sensors stuffed up inside your fuel tank.You lose the reserve, and gain an almost always wildly innacurate fuel gauge or warning light.
    Jon
    2007 500 Bullet Classic
I agree with what you said. Two freinds have 1200 Sportsters, 1 is a 2006 carb model and 1 has a 2007 FI.They both perform the same, but the FI gets less mileage, plus all the extra junk on board to go haywire and leave you sctratching your head. I hate electronic FI. My 6 cylinder pickup used to get 22mph when new. When I hit 30,000 miles it dropped to 16mph. 2 dealers have gave up on trying to figure out why. Now it is off warranty and I am stuck with it. My 66 Ford 289 v-8 RACE motor gets 20mpg with a Holley 4 barrel, and big cam. I like fixing things with a screwdriver.....not a computer I can't carry in my tool kit.     Hutch
You learn from your mistakes, and I have LEARNED a lot.

BanditRE

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2008, 04:54:54 PM »
Amen, Hutch!

The carb and all other mechanical devices are so much more amenable to the shadetree mechanic. But unfortunately, those days are coming to an end (if they're not gone already). EFI, fuel mapping, sensors, computers and a wiring harness 3" around is all likely to be on every bike from now on. That's life I guess.

Hopefully they can make it easy enough for someone like me to understand it and work on it without a PC in the garage.....
2007 Military. It needs some company now the Suzuki has left the stable..........

Kevin Mahoney

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #13 on: April 29, 2008, 08:19:21 PM »
Once again Royal Enfield will take lead in simplicity. Very purposefully keeping their customer profile in mind, (owners who like to tinker) they specified the EFI system to be owner friendly. There is a wire on the unit that you can ground and the "check engine" light (yes it will have one as part of the deal, they are mandatory), will blink. Depending upon the way that it blinks you can determine which component is having trouble. The routine is to check the wire to the device, if that is good the device needs replacing. The codes will be in the owners manual. I have done this myself and it couldn't be easier. If there are multiple issues when the first is cleared up it will go to the second etc.
  What is interesting to me is that this is merely a "feature" that any motorcycle with Fuel Injection can have, but most if not all other manufacturers  do not put it in. I will leave the reasoning behind that to you. In many ways it will be too bad to see the old carburetor go, but there is not other way in this modern world.

BanditRE

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Re: New UCE engine with Electronic Ignition training
« Reply #14 on: April 29, 2008, 08:47:33 PM »
Well that sounds like a better deal, Kevin.

I realize that carbs have to go to meet all the emission laws that are becoming increasing restrictive, and I applaud RE for taking the extra step to make it easier for tinkerers to tinker. Just wish it wasn't so.

But hey, if its a brand new engine and as great as everyone says it is right out of the box, then maybe there won't be as much tinkerin' going on?

Maybe not with this bunch though!  :P
2007 Military. It needs some company now the Suzuki has left the stable..........