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Old 10-30-2008, 08:08 PM   #196
Cubdriver
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Wow

To say the least, there are a few of these cases piling up, and seemingly from big fans of the BMW product line. Is anyone planning on filing a Highway Safety Report? I would think the number is getting up there. After reading this, there is NO WAY I would be driving one of those or putting my wife on one. NO WAY. I will, however, soon be putting her on the new model fork and feel OK about it.
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Old 10-31-2008, 06:33 AM   #197
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There are 3 NHTSA reports in so far

Regretably no reports were made in 2001 or for this 2004 one which has just been uncovered.

Reading around the web it seems many people in the US lack faith in the NHTSA yet authorities such as those in Australia hold NHTSA in a very high regard

I must admit I did not understand the system here in Australia until recently & so have now lodged a report with our Authorities here.

Both the US and Australian Authorities will be made aware of the reports in the other countries and I am advised they co operate on these things
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Old 11-03-2008, 12:00 PM   #198
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my god that has to be the wort possible thing to happen while ridding....seems like a bad casting or maybe something was up with the aluminum they sourced....i wonder if the ones braking where casted around the same time and from the same supllyer of raw materials..anyways that just seems weird.. i really hope bmw looks into this
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Old 11-06-2008, 11:33 PM   #199
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UK Failures

Two potential failures identified in the UK

http://www.f650.co.uk/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=6054

00F650GS, 12k miles, no accident we know of thankfully

Title "Any known fork recalls on F650 GS's ??"

snip "it has a number of cracks both radial to the axle hole and radial fron the torx clamp bolt" snip

The rider posted the above on 8/3/07 & stopped posting 4/4/07

Second UK Failure

http://www.f650.co.uk/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=7083

02F650GS Dakar, 30k miles

snip
"Couple of months ago I managed to park my Dakar up and between two trees with snapped forks"

"a couple of weeks before I'd asked the salesman about it's trade-in value and was quoted just £1500 for an 02 plate Dakar with just a bit over 30,000 on the clock"

"I had little hope of the insurance paying out enough to get another bike but surprise, surprise the insurance chap commented that as it was as nice a bike for 5 years old as he had seen (don't know why I had stopped washing it much years before) and that he would pay-out the maximum insured value of £3000"
snip

Any guesses on the insurance Co ?...You got it...BMW !!!!

At least they paid out the full value of the policy rather than the market value as per the policy.

Confirmed "bottom Stanchion was snapped just above the axle"

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Old 11-08-2008, 08:12 AM   #200
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Wow, this just gets more amazing.
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Old 11-09-2008, 03:45 PM   #201
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1. sorry to hear about this to the thread starter.

2. reminds me of the GS1150 thread when it caught fire in the guys driveway. the thread seemed to have some effect in getting his bike replaced. but I think part of the deal was he nuked the thread.

heck of a way to end a trip. best wishes.
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Old 11-24-2008, 12:54 PM   #202
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Doh, I must be going blind. I know someone in this thread offered to run forks through a metallurgy test but now I can't find that post.

I'm pre-emptively replacing my fork lowers as I found a pair of 2003+ ones and I thought it might be interesting to have one of my 2001 lowers looked at.

If that was you that offered the service, can you PM me? I'll pay for shipping both ways and the cost of the test.
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Old 11-27-2008, 04:54 AM   #203
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Root cause?

Well, I’ve finally made it through 14 pages, and thought I’d add my own thoughts.

Looking at the inside of the fork tube, it appears that there is either casting porosity, or most likely to me, corrosion pitting. In the vein of “A man with a hammer sees everything as a nail”, I see a “connect the dots” line of corrosion pits along the crack.

I have seen similar pits in castings where brake fluid has absorbed water, and caused extreme pitting. If water, particularly sea water with high chloride content, has been in prolonged contact with the aluminum casting, pitting like what is seen in the photographs is entirely possible. Stress accelerates the pitting, and likely could be an additional factor in the area in the casting where the axle buttress meets the tubular portion of the fork tube. Add an unusual loading, like a bump in the road, and you can have a catastrophic failure. Remember, all of this takes place inside the fork tube where we cannot see any sign of impending failure until it is too late.

This then becomes a maintenance frequency issue, which is up to the manufacturer to specify, and all of us as riders to evaluate based on how often we change the fork oil, the state of the fork seals, and if we are in contact with higher than normal chloride containing water. (Sea water, water from winter riding on roads that have magnesium or sodium chloride from road salting.)

My recommendations are:
  • Find a testing lab/engineer that specializes in failure studies (Google has many listed)
  • If it is corrosion induced failure, we all need to start shortening the service intervals on fork our changes
  • BMW needs to re-evaluate their materials of construction, service intervals, seal type, and most importantly,
  • GET A RECALL BULLETIN ISSUED!
Then you might consider the advice of an attorney.
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Old 11-27-2008, 06:43 AM   #204
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Good advice about keeping fork oils clean, but there is no line of corrosion pits or even any individual pits on the pieces of broken forks I have received.

There is also no porosity. The black dots that look like porosity in some of the photos are actually dirt, etc. Things look much clearer under a high-quality stereo microscope, revealing far more detail than even the fairly sharp photos show.

I am patiently waiting for a work-related failure to come along so I can examine the fork fractures in the SEM at the met. lab. I use for free.
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Old 11-27-2008, 08:50 AM   #205
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hey that great Benesesso! Glad someones getting a chance to fine tooth those things!

I'm all ears for the results, when the time comes!

Can you say whose forks you are looking at (Just so I know which pics to look at), I'm assuming they belong to Red Baroness?
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Old 11-27-2008, 09:13 AM   #206
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PM sent.
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Old 11-29-2008, 04:25 AM   #207
WayneC1
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The UK rider who posted in 2007 on f650.co.uk has been located and he has confirmed the cracking found around the axle mount in his RHS fork leg during maintenance.

Glenn has updated his posts there and the message is pretty clear.

Link to the thread is below

http://www.f650.co.uk/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=54398


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Old 12-08-2008, 12:33 PM   #208
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Hi Dwayne,
I just noticed that you're in Calgary. Insurance moved my bike up to Calgary from Crowsnest pass. I'm still working with them to buy my bike back so I can get the forks for testing. It's ridiculous how much it's going to cost, but it seems like the right thing to do.

Anyway, when I do get the paperwork done I may need some advice from a local like you on alternate storage, or shipping companies, etc.
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Old 12-09-2008, 07:27 AM   #209
dwayne
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sure.
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Old 12-09-2008, 03:08 PM   #210
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UPDATE: I took the broken-off right side fork piece to the met. lab. yesterday to be scanned in their SEM. Should have something by tomorrow or Friday.
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