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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings,

I just installed a Koso Mini 3 temperature gauge. This gauge comes with a wiring harness that connects into the stock wiring; in this way, the stock cylinder head temperature sensor is used as the source for the digital readout on the aftermarket (Koso) gauge.

It seems to be working correctly, and I like the addition of the gauge thus far. My question is this: What SHOULD the appropriate temperature range be for the cylinder head? Put another way, at what temperature should I think about parking it in the shade to let it cool, or possibly adding an external oil cooler? I am an average-sized adult male rider, but I am pushing the little bike fairly hard (frequent WOT, Southern California heat) -- I want to be a bit mindful as to the temperature of the engine. Currently, the engine is nearly stock (Kitaco clutch cover, that is about it). The Koso gauge registered a maximum of 295 degrees F yesterday during a long hard ride.

What is the "normal" cylinder head temperature range, anyway?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Did you set it to t-2? See page 2 of the instructions: http://kosonorthamerica.com/instructions/BA003245.pdf
It shouldn't be getting that hot.
Thank you for the link. I believe I have it set to t-1 (I think). I was initially curious as to why you recommended setting it to t-2?.......then I saw the model-specific panel in those instructions. I guess I missed that bit of information during the install. I'll make sure I have it set to t-2 when I get home from work tonight. Thank you very much!

Any idea what temp gauge should read?

Thank you again for catching my probable error.
 

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take note, if it taps the oem temp gauge, it will measure oil temps and not the head. the head will be higher. not sure if the calibration, but if that was an accurate reading of your oil temps, it's way too hot.

even so, the head will read different temps depending on where you measure.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Is the Koso Temp gauge readable in direct sunlight???

I hate my OPMID gauge because you could not read it in direct sunlight
The Koso is most definitely readable in direct sunlight: Black LCD numbers against a light-gray background.

From my experiences using LED pedal tuners for guitars in direct sunlight, I knew that LEDs -- conversely -- can be very hard to read in the sun.....that was part of why I opted for the Koso over the OPMID.
 

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The Koso is most definitely readable in direct sunlight: Black LCD numbers against a light-gray background.

From my experiences using LED pedal tuners for guitars in direct sunlight, I knew that LEDs -- conversely -- can be very hard to read in the sun.....that was part of why I opted for the Koso over the OPMID.
thanks for the info,

What sensor did it come with? The sensor for the head or the one for the oil. I think on the takegawa cylinder there is a port where the external oil cooler can be attached to and depending on the sensor unit I can attach it there since one of the nut has a small thread hole which looks like a sensor can be attached to it.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
It uses the stock sensor......the Koso temperature gauge comes with a wiring harness which connects into the stock wiring. The sensor used IS the STOCK sensor already in place on the lower left-side of the cylinder. I assumed that this was a "cylinder temperature" sensor, but someone else suggested that this is actually the oil temperature.
 

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It uses the stock sensor......the Koso temperature gauge comes with a wiring harness which connects into the stock wiring. The sensor used IS the STOCK sensor already in place on the lower left-side of the cylinder. I assumed that this was a "cylinder temperature" sensor, but someone else suggested that this is actually the oil temperature.
You're going to get both sides of the argument. Unfortunately, it's not an accurate reading for either oil or head temps. It DOES get oil temps from the passage inside, but you're also getting a ton of residual heat from being so close to the head. If you were to rely on it like you would a head temp sensor, you'll burn up the oil before average head temps show any issue. In either case, using the stock sensor location, you're going to get really skewed temperature readings.

For it to be an accurate oil temp sensor, the sensor should really be located in or around the sump of the oil. For most accurate head temps, put the sensor beneath the spark plug.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Farkas,

Thank you for the additional information. I agree that the numbers provided by the LCD read-out don't quite make sense (based on what I have now read about engine operating temperatures). I believe the engine itself is operating normally.

I am probably being overly-cautious, given that this bike is pretty close to stock, but at least I can get a sense of the operating temperature of the engine. I may then have a sense of comparison if I add an oil-cooler.

Thanks again.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I only know because I made the same error. You want to keep it under 240F.
And......you were right. I just drove to work with the gauge set to "t-2." The displayed temperatures were considerably lower than yesterday. I found that it took the bike a long time to warm-up; the highest temperature displayed was 205 F; but it took over 30 minutes of hard riding to see that number displayed. I thought this was weird......would the temps keep on increasing if I kept on riding? I do not think that reading shown is very accurate -- I am mainly going to use this gauge as a point of comparison.......oil-cooler is in my future.

Thanks again.
 

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as mentioned, in a way, it does combine overall head/oil temps as it's the oil return passage from the head to the case. in theory, the oil would be near it's hottest temp at this point.

what i did, take measurements at idle, right after a casual ride, right after a hard ride and right after a hard ride with elevation at various points at the head and cylinder. take note of the difference to the koso gauge and you'll have a general idea when you are riding. if you have access to a thermal camera, that is the easiest way to do it as you'll see an overall picture and can pinpoint the hot spots.

regarding temps, the exhaust is the hottest on the head while the right side of the cylinder is the hottest on the jug.
 

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And......you were right. I just drove to work with the gauge set to "t-2." The displayed temperatures were considerably lower than yesterday. I found that it took the bike a long time to warm-up; the highest temperature displayed was 205 F; but it took over 30 minutes of hard riding to see that number displayed. I thought this was weird......would the temps keep on increasing if I kept on riding? I do not think that reading shown is very accurate -- I am mainly going to use this gauge as a point of comparison.......oil-cooler is in my future.

Thanks again.
Glad to hear it! 205 after hard riding sounds about right. I top out about 215 with a 170 kit and oil cooler except on the hottest of days when I'm stopping frequently.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for the continued support and feedback. I think the bike is running normally, but that engine is giving off some heat. I plan on switching to fully synthetic oil ( most likely Amsoil metric) this weekend -- seems like that oil is well-regarded for hot engines. I also see an external oil cooler in my not-too-distant future (gotta choose an air filter intake first to make the space on the frame). Hopefully, those measures will help keep heat build-up in check.
 

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Are you running a big bore or other set-up that would require a cooler? From what you've described here, everything is working as expected and a cooler is not necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The bike is pretty close to stock -- the only engine mod thus far is the Kitaco clutch cover -- done mainly because I like the idea of the replaceable oil filter (and it provides ports for an external oil-cooler). Many would argue that I really don't NEED an oil cooler.....and they would be correct. For my own peace of mind, however, I LIKE the idea of having an oil cooler. I tend to ride on some roads which are 45-55 MPH posted -- this means the bike is running WOT for extended periods of time; I live in San Diego County, and sometimes ride in areas where daytime temperatures can hit triple-digits, plus I am full-sized adult (185 pound-ish).......all of this makes for that engine working pretty dang hard. I would thus like to give it a little extra *love* by adding an oil-cooler, and I really don't see much of a down-side to the addition.
 
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