Originally Posted by wardenross
Perhaps on the LT, but the AirHead only holds a little over 2.5 quarts. I cruise at 5,000 rpm most of the time. I run the stew out of her. In addition, she may sit for a couple of months without riding.
When she was my only transportation, and I put a lot of fast miles on her, I changed oil at 5K miles.
If I am putting high mileage on the LT, I will go to 6K miles between oil changes. When I go to the 3K mile changes, it's because I am doing a lot of stop-and-go and no open road mileage. Last year I only put 6K miles on the LT, so I only changed it twice within that year. I hate to go over 6 months without an oil change, regardless of miles.
IMHO, oil filters on the bikes are too small to risk going much over 6K miles between changes. I believe that the oil is good for very high mileage, just not the filters.
The only way you'll know for sure is to due an oil analyst. What do you call short trips? Is it just a mile or two or is it more like 15 or more. A quality synthetic oil like Mobil 1 does a very good job at suspending particles.....better then what most people understand.
To give you an idea, I change the oil in my Ford E-350 van once a year with Mobil 1 5w-30, about 8000 miles, of which 60% are trips less then 5 miles.
To quote my Oil Report "We found all wear at around average levels and in correct balance to show normal mechanical parts inside. The 0.4% level of insolubles indicates good oil filtration. Silicon was a bit high though still in the normal range. You might want to check/change air filter. This oil had no fuel, moisture, or anti-freeze in it. The oil could have stayed in use longer, try 10000 mile for next sample."
When I was racing air cooled Porsche motors and using dino oil we changed oil every weekend, sometimes if it was a very hot weekend we had to change it during the weekend due to viscosity break down. After we switch to Mobil 1 we extended our oil drain intervals to three to four weekends with no adverse effects to the motor. That's several hundred miles per weekend at redline. I 've seen many of these motors go 40,000 race miles, only to be taken apart for the fear that something bad had to happen sometime, and then reassembled with a quick valve job and hammered again back on the track.
The bottom line is this, we sell Mobil 1 V twin oil. It's not cheap. I expect at the price this and other high quality synthetic oils cost to get extended drain intervals with superior results. If your bike is still under warranty you will still need to do 6000 miles oil changes. Another thing to keep in mind is this, one of the reasons that fuel prices have somewhat stabilized ( remember just a few months ago when they were predicting $4.50 a gallon by July 4) is that demand has leveled off. We all need to do our part and if I'm paying three times the amount for synthetic oil over dino I want my monies worth!