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Old 05-27-2012, 02:37 AM   #46
tagesk
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Right-hand side.



Left-hand side.

To me, reliability means that when I drop the bike hard two times in 30 minutes, not a drop of oil is left behind, not a piece of plastic remains on the ground, and the ride continues (although I should have turned around long ago).

This is what reliability is about. Not whether you need to keep an eye on mechanical things that might need some attention. I have replaced three FD main bearings (Arezzo (Italy), Alcoy (Catalonia (currently in Spain)) and Hannover (Germany)). I attribute all of them to high-velocity travel with far too much luggage which was done without prudent maintenance before "takeoff".

If you don't trust BMW, buy a HD. It will ensure you stay on flat roads. Good for you.
If you hate your BWM, sell it and buy a HD. It will keep you away from spots where you can experience something extraordinary.

Why spend your life complaining when the remedy is readily at hand?

[TaSK]
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Old 05-27-2012, 04:22 AM   #47
mac62
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Third BMW, not one single failure of anything.
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Old 05-27-2012, 06:13 AM   #48
jtw000
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On the negative side... To put this back in balance, a lot of people are having significant problems with the R1200gs, not so much the earlier machines. I had an 04 and it was nothing but trouble. I did my homework and discovered the ring antenna failure and the fuel pump controller problems. Both common faults and I had neither, possibly because mine was second hand and had been upgraded substantially.
I had fuelling problems which made it expensive to run sometimes. Other times it ran ok. I had battery issues and brake problems and had to have it recovered twice. Also, at around 50000 miles it was in need of a major overhaul including the replacement of the shaft drive. I also had a Honda Fireblade with the same mileage that ran like a swiss watch. Several panels simply flew off while riding, bulbs blew regularly, errors showed on the dash which didn't exist and the front of the engine rotted away (a strange uniquely English issue apparently, must be something in the water). I got to know my dealers quite well and even they joke about how unreliable they are now. It was a lovely bike to ride but I couldn't trust her and that was a shame.
To answer your question... why? It's because they're built to a cost and profitability is now far more important the usability. Their reputation has been established, they're going to sell well regardless of a few faults. If you go for one, I wish you all the luck but go in with your eyes open. They are not reliable machines from what I've heard, seen and experienced myself.

I bought mine for a big trip and chose to give up on. I tried the F800gs and gave up on that too for the same reasons. The Tenere is worth a look but i think it has a major design flaw. I've known 3 RTW riders and an enduro rider and they've all dropped them in silly places and these aren't guys to drop their bikes. I think maybe there's an issue with the balance. I rode a tuned up RTW machine and the power gain from some mods is impressive.
You simply do not need a big boxer but most people who own one will tell you that you do. With all due respect, reliability is not about a bike surviving a crash. It's about getting out in the middle of nowhere and having the utmost faith that your bike isn't going to let you down when it matters most. For most users getting off the tarmac the boxer is too big and too heavy. Would a smaller bike have dropped twice in 30 minutes? Probably not, not on that surface. Just letting you know that you have choices.

jtw000 screwed with this post 05-27-2012 at 06:20 AM
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Old 05-27-2012, 06:28 AM   #49
Axispower2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtw000 View Post
On the negative side... To put this back in balance, a lot of people are having significant problems with the R1200gs, not so much the earlier machines. I had an 04 and it was nothing but trouble. I did my homework and discovered the ring antenna failure and the fuel pump controller problems. Both common faults and I had neither, possibly because mine was second hand and had been upgraded substantially.
I had fuelling problems which made it expensive to run sometimes. Other times it ran ok. I had battery issues and brake problems and had to have it recovered twice. Also, at around 50000 miles it was in need of a major overhaul including the replacement of the shaft drive. I also had a Honda Fireblade with the same mileage that ran like a swiss watch. Several panels simply flew off while riding, bulbs blew regularly, errors showed on the dash which didn't exist and the front of the engine rotted away (a strange uniquely English issue apparently, must be something in the water). I got to know my dealers quite well and even they joke about how unreliable they are now. It was a lovely bike to ride but I couldn't trust her and that was a shame.
To answer your question... why? It's because they're built to a cost and profitability is now far more important the usability. Their reputation has been established, they're going to sell well regardless of a few faults. If you go for one, I wish you all the luck but go in with your eyes open. They are not reliable machines from what I've heard, seen and experienced myself.

I bought mine for a big trip and chose to give up on. I tried the F800gs and gave up on that too for the same reasons. The Tenere is worth a look but i think it has a major design flaw. I've known 3 RTW riders and an enduro rider and they've all dropped them in silly places and these aren't guys to drop their bikes. I think maybe there's an issue with the balance. I rode a tuned up RTW machine and the power gain from some mods is impressive.
You simply do not need a big boxer but most people who own one will tell you that you do. With all due respect, reliability is not about a bike surviving a crash. It's about getting out in the middle of nowhere and having the utmost faith that your bike isn't going to let you down when it matters most. For most users getting off the tarmac the boxer is too big and too heavy. Would a smaller bike have dropped twice in 30 minutes? Probably not, not on that surface. Just letting you know that you have choices.
+1,000 - especially the part about reliability. I'd rather be thinking about getting there and going there, than, "will this thing get me there"?
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Old 05-27-2012, 06:39 AM   #50
CanadianX
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Google any vehicle and add "known problems" or something to that effect and you'll find a long list of people complaining about what a POS they ended up with. What they won't tell you is how they neglected and abused the machine or how they bought it from this nice old lady who only drove/rode it on Sundays and it was in mint shape.

I have a 09 GSA with a mere 25,000km on it. II've owned it since April of last year, bought it used with 5k on the odo and it had sat for more than a year as the owner needed time to come to the realization that due to health issues he'd never ride the dream trip he bought the bike for. I had the local shop give it the once over and the seller put a new battery in it. I handed over the money and completed the deal and rode out of town for 5000km to get back home. That included riding through a snow storm in Ontario coming over Lake Superior and freezing rain going through Montreal. That summer after getting home I stacked the bike with me and Mrs CdnX and 100lbs of gear and rode another 5000km around the Trans Lab and through Newfoundland. Before hitting the gravel I took the my bike out on numerous trails to get comfortable with the bike on gravel. I soon found myself riding with the local dual sport club and jumping ditches, crossing mud holes, streams and riding power lines and atv trails. I just got back yesterday from a 1000km over night trip that included making time on the slab behind a guy who was happy to be my police bait out front as we cruised at a steady 150km/h for about 45min. I've bounced this bike over rocks and ditches, ridden long dusty hot days, loaded it with tons of gear and the sum total of maintenance has been oil changes and air filtres and of couse the regular servicing per the manual at the shop. To date no issues.

If something does wear out I won't be surprised, I've used the bike on all sorts of terrain, though I can't say I've beaten on it or neglected maintenance or even thrashed it with high reving tire smoking runs, I can say it has seen the full range of it's capabilities within the scope of my limited skills and seems to be content running up the highway or running up the trails.

I recently traded a Honda VFR which I fully expect would outlast many bikes but it never went off road, never ran dusty dirt tracks, occassionally saw rain and never raced. To compare the reliability of the two when they had much different lives wouldn't be a very good comparison. Now the KTM 690 that I traded the Honda for has seen it's first 1000km and half of that at least has been plowing over rocks and streams and mud. I expect it will wear parts faster...and probably most of those parts will be mine - shoulder joints and all

Buy whateve spins your spurs and be realistic with the expectations based on how it get used and how you maintain it.
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Old 05-27-2012, 06:46 AM   #51
marty hill
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Worrying about the possibility of something breaking on a trip is beyond pathetic. Stay home and enjoy the 4 walls.
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Old 05-27-2012, 07:19 AM   #52
apexal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clodhopper55 View Post
WHY do GS's break all the time
Why do we give life to threads like this?
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Old 05-27-2012, 10:40 AM   #53
Wallowa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apexal View Post
Why do we give life to threads like this?
Sadly nothing of value ever really comes from these subjective posts. See thread on the guy stuck in Poland with a lunched FD. Not that the FDs are a problem mind you, but that thread shows how some folks jumped right in to help this stranded rider and get his bike fixed. That alone is worth the price of admission.

I joined this forum to increase my knowledge about the workings of my '07 GSA. Why? So that I can intelligently maintain and if necessary repair my bike. Either 'head-in-the-sand' or 'sky is falling' posts do nothing to further constructive discourse.

Have I gain valuable "care and feeding" facts for keeping my bike running and to avoid getting stranded? You bet. In spite of a lot of the bilge read on this forum. Since I ride off road and solo, getting back is my first priority and I have found enough factual nuggets to put the odds in my favor.

Reliability is a relative term. Depends on your tolerance for and ability to engage in problem solving. Yes, there is a laundry list of weaknesses in the design of my bike and while that does not immobilize me with trepidations it does cause me to make prudent preparations for potential failures. Again this depends on your mind-set and tolerance for risk.

So the bikes do break, and yes they do strand riders, and yes you can repair them, and yes perhaps BMW should do a better job of engineering, but in my world that should not stop a rider from embarking on an adventure. Risk vs. benefits.

My bike has produced hours and hours of big shit eatin' grins exploring the desert and backwoods; if and when it strands me, I will deal with it.

Just my take and of course "I may be wrong".

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Old 05-27-2012, 11:25 AM   #54
jtw000
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Originally Posted by marty hill View Post
Worrying about the possibility of something breaking on a trip is beyond pathetic. Stay home and enjoy the 4 walls.
No. You're missing the point in the worst way imaginable. I didn't stay home. Last year I rode around 20000 miles in 3 months. I toured Europe and crossed the Middle East, 2 up around Europe and rode through 20 countries. My bike never gave me a moments trouble but concerning myself with the possibility made sure I planned for the worst and had an easy time of it.
The R1200GS is, in my opinion, not up to it. When we were in Pakistan we were faced with a 30 mile stretch of no roads, no backup, no support. That's when you take a good, hard look at your motorcycle. You don't need any gadgets then, you just need a machine that will do what it's built to do.
Saying anything else just shows you don't really get it.
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Old 05-27-2012, 12:06 PM   #55
ghostryder
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Originally Posted by apexal View Post
Why do we give life to threads like this?
Bored???
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Old 05-27-2012, 12:49 PM   #56
Tomcat503
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Signal View Post


1. All things mechanical break.
2. People post about #1
+1

People post when they have issues, they usually don't post..."Went for a ride today and wanted to let everyone know nothing broke."
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Old 05-27-2012, 01:12 PM   #57
TUCKERS
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Colleen went for a ride last week and nothing broke...except the windshield when she dropped the GS in a parking lot

She's one of those little women who does 80 in a 40 but can't reach the ground when stopped

At least her lean angle was impressive
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Old 05-27-2012, 01:34 PM   #58
tagesk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtw000 View Post
You don't need any gadgets then, you just need a machine that will do what it's built to do.
Sorry, but I don't get it; not trying to troll you, I sincerely don't understand.

You ride 20.000 miles with no issues.
Then you take a good look at your bike, in a remote place, and decide you don't trust it.

How come?

[TaSK]
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Old 05-27-2012, 01:57 PM   #59
tvbh40a
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Originally Posted by tagesk View Post
sorry, but i don't get it; not trying to troll you, i sincerely don't understand.

You ride 20.000 miles with no issues.
Then you take a good look at your bike, in a remote place, and decide you don't trust it.

How come?

[task]
+1
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Old 05-27-2012, 02:03 PM   #60
k1w1t1m
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtw000 View Post
No. You're missing the point in the worst way imaginable. I didn't stay home. Last year I rode around 20000 miles in 3 months. I toured Europe and crossed the Middle East, 2 up around Europe and rode through 20 countries. My bike never gave me a moments trouble but concerning myself with the possibility made sure I planned for the worst and had an easy time of it.
The R1200GS is, in my opinion, not up to it. When we were in Pakistan we were faced with a 30 mile stretch of no roads, no backup, no support. That's when you take a good, hard look at your motorcycle. You don't need any gadgets then, you just need a machine that will do what it's built to do.
Saying anything else just shows you don't really get it.
What Tagesk wrote....

Please be more specific so we can read the ride reports of the competitors machines that apparently cross this same area problem free and perform well on the remaining 19,970 miles.
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