ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Bikes > GSpot > GS Boxers
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 05-21-2014, 05:40 PM   #1
marchyman OP
Cam Killer
 
marchyman's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2005
Location: SF Bay Area
Oddometer: 6,844
GSW: the high cost of doing maintenance

OK, the subject is a bit of a tease, but... if you were foolish enough to walk up to the parts counter of your favorite dealer and say "give me the parts needed for a 12K service on an '13 GS" they'd put a small pile of stuff in front of you and then say... $350 please.

No, it doesn't have to be that way. What, exactly, makes a 12K service worth $350? Especially since that doesn't cover all possible costs.
  • Oil. BMW specified engine oil can be found for < $8/qt. Paying $18/qt to a dealer doesn't make much sense. Still, with Ca tax the remaining items are almost $280.
  • Gaskets. BMW has a gasket kit that included inner and outer valve cover gaskets plus the O-ring for the oil filler. The kit is $80 per side. Your dealer may change these gaskets every service... I don't. On the other hand I do like to keep a set in the garage just in case. That makes this a one-time charge for me. Ouch. This time. The gaskets will go in a drawer and if this bike is the same as my earlier GS they'll be given to the new owner about 8 years from now.
  • FD Gear oil: BMW has a cute little bottle of gear oil that even comes with a spout to make squirting it into the FD easy. $10 (which equates to $50/liter). Expensive, but convenient. I bought it.
  • Plugs are $18 each. Maybe I'll need them, maybe not. Smart to have them on hand. It also gave me a chance to see if my 9/16 spark plug wrench would fit. Nope... it wasn't long enough. It would work --- until I attached it to a wrench or an extension. A BMW style thin wall 14 mm plug socket is on order.
  • Stock air and oil filters total about $44. Next time I may go after market.


That may not be everything. If a valve adjust is needed you'll need to buy new shims. Along with the new shims you are supposed to change an O-ring that goes under the cam bridge. That may be difficult as BMW does not list the O-ring in its parts break down. I haven't a clue what size it is as I've not yet had the cams out. The dealer parts guys don't know what size/part number either. Great doc, BMW.

If you are using factory tools and procedures when changing shims the cam chain tensioner is pulled and replaced with a tool during part of the process. New crush washers should be used when putting the tensioner back. The dealer didn't have any in stock. I was going to order a bunch from McMaster Carr but they don't have 20x24mm copper seal washers.

Anyway, the purpose of this post is to inform those who wonder why a service costs so much if done by the dealer. Add some number of hours of labor at $100/hour and the cost can easily hit north of $600. More (lots?) if they actually have to adjust a valve.
marchyman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2014, 05:45 PM   #2
bikecat
Beastly Adventurer
 
bikecat's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2006
Location: Tropical Far East
Oddometer: 1,082
I know nothing about the LC.

Valve clearances now require shims? How is the process compared to the dry hexheads and airheads?
bikecat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2014, 07:30 PM   #3
marchyman OP
Cam Killer
 
marchyman's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2005
Location: SF Bay Area
Oddometer: 6,844
Quote:
Originally Posted by bikecat View Post
I know nothing about the LC.

Valve clearances now require shims? How is the process compared to the dry hexheads and airheads?
Hexhead (through 2009 models) use screw adjustments

Camheads (2010..2012 for the GS, 2013 for the GS Adv) use semi-sphere shims that sit in the finger followers. Very easy to change. Pop off an e-clip, remove the follower, replace the semi-sphere, slide the follower back on its shaft, re-install the e-clip. There's a thread on it here someplace.

Wetheads use shims but you remove the cams to get at. I think JVB has posted some images of this. Not that much of a big deal given that you don't have to do it all that often. Valve checks are every 12K. Don't know yet how often you'll need to make changes.
marchyman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2014, 09:25 PM   #4
Beecher Snipes
Fool
 
Beecher Snipes's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2002
Location: Mount Vernon, WA
Oddometer: 235
At 12K you will not need to make valve adjustments when you check them, have not heard of that. The system is very stable. When you do need to make an adjustment there is a quick and dirty way that requires marking the cam gear relationships with a felt pen and going for it. The factory method of checking cam timing and locking things down is proper but not always needed. Many of the gaskets are re usable. BMW dealers do not re use rubber gaskets. Some common sense is needed. Check your valve clearance, change the oils, bleed the brakes (once a year to be good), lube your shift linkage, center stand, side stand, brake and clutch pivots ....get a feel for it and relax. Look things over for weird stuff like chaffing wires, oil leaks, loose fasteners. Going by the bmw flat rate book ...have a heart attach. Doing your own work is a balance job between common sense, good mechanical thinking and what BMW says. Of course one has to err on solid maintenance, but think about it.
(unfortunately the water bike uses a new style of shim rather than the hemispherical ones of the 10.11.12 bikes. It is a flat disk that fits on top of the valve stem head captured by the top valve keeper/disk with the cam lobe working on it directly. With this direct cam action it is questionable if they are re usable. Inspect closely. And you do have to remove the cams rather than just slide out the follower fingers of the previous three year bikes. So now I have two boxes of shims!) We cut our losses and dumped 4 engines as quick as we could.

Years back I was on a committee to figure out how to get out of a financial mess the company was in. They had bought 6 large diesel engines from Holland at a super discount price of $200,000 each. The pinch was the factory tech confided in me thinking I was a ship flunky, that they were waiting for the parts orders to come in. And, they were right. 20K hour rebuilds cost 5x's what the competition would have been. Not to mention they hot rodded the engines to meet the HP spec. It was fun love hate relationship.

Beecher Snipes screwed with this post 05-21-2014 at 09:35 PM
Beecher Snipes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2014, 10:02 PM   #5
marchyman OP
Cam Killer
 
marchyman's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2005
Location: SF Bay Area
Oddometer: 6,844
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beecher Snipes View Post
At 12K you will not need to make valve adjustments when you check them, have not heard of that.
I thought I read of a rider where one of the 8 valves was borderline so a shim was changed. However, I really don't expect to find the same on my bike when the time comes. I'll suspect I'll do nothing more that measure and note the current readings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beecher Snipes View Post
Many of the gaskets are re usable. BMW dealers do not re use rubber gaskets.
I reuse the valve cover gaskets. But, as I said in my first post, I like to have a spare set in the garage just in case. I think I changed the outer gasket once on my '05 in 78K miles. The inner gasket and the oil filler cap O-ring got changed a little bit more often.

O-rings are hit or miss. Most of the time they are fine, but I will not put a nicked O-ring back in the bike. That's why I would like to have some on hand. Since BMW doesn't list the cam bridge O-ring part number or size I'll just have to hope that I have an equivalent in my box-full-of-O-rings should I ever need one. Given that the only way I'll need one is if I have to change a shim AND the existing O-ring is nicked it may be a long while before I put my box-full-of-O-rings to the test.
marchyman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 04:31 AM   #6
Coma
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Coma's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2012
Location: The North Coast
Oddometer: 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by marchyman View Post
OK, the subject is a bit of a tease, but... if you were foolish enough to walk up to the parts counter of your favorite dealer and say "give me the parts needed for a 12K service on an '13 GS" they'd put a small pile of stuff in front of you and then say... $350 please.

No, it doesn't have to be that way. What, exactly, makes a 12K service worth $350? Especially since that doesn't cover all possible costs.

Anyway, the purpose of this post is to inform those who wonder why a service costs so much if done by the dealer. Add some number of hours of labor at $100/hour and the cost can easily hit north of $600. More (lots?) if they actually have to adjust a valve.
As you point out, most of this stuff of equal quality can be found else ware cheaper. The Marketeers of the premium Brand consider the added cost is what you pay for convenience. If you skip the gaskets, keep the FD oil and after market the rest you are at, what ~$100?

To me, that cost is lost in the noise of life. Unless you're doing 12k/month. In 12k miles you might have gone through two sets of tires.

Look at it this way. Compare the cost of maintenance to the cost of Whiskey and Women in 12k.
__________________
2008 R1200GS

Never take your bike someplace your head hasn't already been.
Coma is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 06:49 AM   #7
JetSpeed
Naviator
 
JetSpeed's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2007
Location: KNZY
Oddometer: 2,431
I just went through the same deal this week as I hit 12k miles, I purchased the same BMW items from the dealer with the exception of the gaskets and oil/filter.
I completed everything myself except I'm waiting for an appointment next week to get the valves checked and the bike hooked to their magic diagnostic computer, I'm fairly certain that I have some valves that may need a little re-shimming, the bike doesn't have the power it did and it's not as smooth.

I was surprised at how clean the air filter was (replaced anyway) and how much wear the electrodes on the spark plugs had, they needed replaced.
__________________
2013 R1200GSW

Breakfast first, lunch second and safety third.
I'm a staunch believer in MTGMTT, don't take unnecessary chances too often.
JetSpeed is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 08:04 AM   #8
Beecher Snipes
Fool
 
Beecher Snipes's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2002
Location: Mount Vernon, WA
Oddometer: 235
Sounds to me like everyone had pretty good maintenance plans. Save your receipts and keep a log. The good thing about the dealer checking the valves is that their procedure includes checking the cam timing to in relation to the driving gear. This can certainly change things.
(I know what you mean about spare parts on hand.)
Beecher Snipes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 08:12 AM   #9
Coma
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Coma's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2012
Location: The North Coast
Oddometer: 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by JetSpeed View Post
I'm fairly certain that I have some valves that may need a little re-shimming, the bike doesn't have the power it did and it's not as smooth.
First thing I noticed after my 18k and the valve adjustment, the bike was noticeably smoother. Between that and the TB sync it was worth every penny of my $187.
__________________
2008 R1200GS

Never take your bike someplace your head hasn't already been.
Coma is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 08:23 AM   #10
dogmantra
the White Shadow
 
dogmantra's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2008
Location: Seattle
Oddometer: 355
Big gulp.

I have been half-dreading reading a thread like this. I have a '02 R1150R that I picked up a few months ago. Solid shape, 58K miles. FGot it from a dealer so fluids had been swapped. I ride daily and have 3.5K on it since bringing it home.

I've noticed the valves sounding a little slappy and expect to bring it in before summer for an adjustment. TBobies need looking at. Rubber is down so those will need replacing as well. ...also pulling the cat and swapping out stock exhaust before hand.

Ugh.
__________________
"Being shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube. That is why God made fast motorcycles, Bubba...." -Hunter S. Thompson

1968 BSA B-25 Starfire
dogmantra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 08:44 AM   #11
JimVonBaden
"Cool" Aid!
 
JimVonBaden's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2005
Location: Alexandria, VA
Oddometer: 48,527
Quote:
Originally Posted by dogmantra View Post
I have been half-dreading reading a thread like this. I have a '02 R1150R that I picked up a few months ago. Solid shape, 58K miles. FGot it from a dealer so fluids had been swapped. I ride daily and have 3.5K on it since bringing it home.

I've noticed the valves sounding a little slappy and expect to bring it in before summer for an adjustment. TBobies need looking at. Rubber is down so those will need replacing as well. ...also pulling the cat and swapping out stock exhaust before hand.

Ugh.
Your bike is a snap. http://www.jimvonbaden.com/R1200_24K.html

Buy your service kit here: www.beemerboneyard.com and do it yourself. Very easy!
JimVonBaden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 09:23 AM   #12
dogmantra
the White Shadow
 
dogmantra's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2008
Location: Seattle
Oddometer: 355
Boom!

JVB, you DO know that you are my hero, right?


Quote:
Originally Posted by JimVonBaden View Post
Your bike is a snap. http://www.jimvonbaden.com/R1200_24K.html

Buy your service kit here: www.beemerboneyard.com and do it yourself. Very easy!
__________________
"Being shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube. That is why God made fast motorcycles, Bubba...." -Hunter S. Thompson

1968 BSA B-25 Starfire
dogmantra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 09:34 AM   #13
lkchris
Albuquerque
 
lkchris's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2005
Oddometer: 971
BMW boxer twin valve cover gaskets have been designed to be reusable for years and years, even Airheads. Just remember, no adhesive or other goop.
__________________
Kent Christensen
Albuquerque
'12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S
lkchris is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 09:35 AM   #14
lkchris
Albuquerque
 
lkchris's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2005
Oddometer: 971
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coma View Post
First thing I noticed after my 18k and the valve adjustment, the bike was noticeably smoother. Between that and the TB sync it was worth every penny of my $187.
Since not watercooled and no water jackets, new motor oil will make the engine run quieter than it was just before you changed it. Less likely to hear this with watercooled motor, I'd think.
__________________
Kent Christensen
Albuquerque
'12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S
lkchris is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2014, 10:08 AM   #15
Draganee Racing
Adventurer
 
Draganee Racing's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2013
Location: Daytona Beach
Oddometer: 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by dogmantra View Post
boom!

Jvb, you do know that you are my hero, right?
ditto !
Draganee Racing is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 11:30 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014