2011 bmw g 650 gs fork failure

Discussion in 'Face Plant' started by antiquewidow, Jun 22, 2011.

  1. antiquewidow

    antiquewidow Adventurer

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    Thanks for all the info... will keep all informed as i go.... I hope I heal fast too cuz this is not enjoyable.. And to think I quite smoking and rewarded myself by getting my license and buying a BMW bike.
    #41
  2. JagLite

    JagLite Long timer

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    Wow, this is scary :eek1

    To ride a bike you have to have confidence in it.
    Will you be able to ride your bike, or a replacement bike with confidence?

    Like flying a plane where the main spar in the wing has broken on another one of the same model. A new one. In smooth air. Terrifying...

    That type of breakage should NEVER happen not matter how much a rider abused the bike beyond what it is designed for.
    But your bike is designed to be ridden off the smooth paved roads where it will be jumped and ridden hard so it is designed to take a lot.

    I would be quite wary of riding my bike if I had the same model. :huh
    #42
  3. Benesesso

    Benesesso Long timer

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    Sorry to hear this. I examined the failed forks on the "Destruction Bay" bike, but unfortunately was unable to determine the real reason for the failure.

    I forwarded the pieces to another metallurgist who specializes in aluminum (I'm more into steel and superalloys), and he felt it was a casting/manufacturing/design problem.

    When I first heard of the Dest. Bay fracture I thought it would be easy, that I'd find evidence of fatigue cracking--which is easy to find on alum. But no such luck. No fatigue crack evidence at all. Without a physical exam, I am nevertheless near positive that fatigue cracking is NOT involved in your forks.

    Fat. cracks are usually slow growing--not the case for these forks. They "appear" to be castings, and alum. castings are well known to be on the brittle side.

    I think the fracture started at that black spot (probably a casting defect that went ALMOST thru wall--could be factory-applied black fork paint in a casting defect), and the bottom of the crack is where the stress would be highest--the axle is trying to lift AND rotate the attachment point.

    Brittle fractures happen very fast, with NO advance warning. There are many casting problems that could be involved here. I'd bet a bunch that BMW knows exactly what the problem is--why some forks can survive lots of "abuse", while other have what is known as "infant failure".

    I'm camping way up on a mountain just south of Prescott, AZ, so am unable to check in as often as I wish I could.
    #43
  4. harryhammer

    harryhammer Been here awhile

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    get well soon, ps. did you want a cig after you got out of er, i know i would have :D
    #44
  5. lemieuxmc

    lemieuxmc Banned

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    Good to hear from you Benesesso!

    I thought your analysis and discussion of the earlier BMW fork problem was fascinating. I think that this is a GIGANTIC problem for BMW!

    I would sure be pissed off if I just dropped over 8 large on a new bike and suspected that the front wheel might break off at any moment.
    #45
  6. Wuwei

    Wuwei Long timer

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    Pure uninformed speculation: do you know that these forks are not made in China? Various Chinese cast boating products have been known to fail.
    #46
  7. Benesesso

    Benesesso Long timer

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    Hope they don't kick me out of this WiFi restaurant, but I see empty tables.

    The only way I would ride one of these bikes would be after a very good radiographic exam (RT) of the lower end of the axle mount, or possibly a real good ultrasonic exam (UT). RT is deadly on finding casting defects such as porosity, while a GOOD UT guy can usually find them too.

    Almost hate to say this, but given the absence of fatigue involvement, a riding "proof test" is what I want--meaning I'd hire someone, explain the situation, and have him give it a real rough workout--and I mean rough.

    If the forks survived, I'd ride it--after it passed RT.

    Now to give my lowly KLR a pat on the rear end--oops, I mean final drive. :1drink
    #47
  8. antiquewidow

    antiquewidow Adventurer

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    Cig after ER - no didnt want one; my husband wanted one real bad though.

    It is very very upsetting & depressing when you have worked so extremely hard in achieving something for so long & something like this happens.

    I know this may sound ridiculous but I have always wanted to get a bike & my license; but for one reason or another I either never could afford it or my families needs were more important than mine.

    Finally this year I decided that this grandma of 4 would achieve what she has always wanted. I quit smoking, got my permit, took my course & got my license. Then I bought my new BEEMER to only have this incident shatter my heart....
    Sorry to blah , blah , blah on ya guys....... Will keep checkin in & once again thanks for all the info & support.....
    #48
  9. JDLuke

    JDLuke Ravening for delight

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    Nonsense, that's part of why we're all here.
    #49
  10. tmotten

    tmotten Lefthand ride Dutchy

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    That's bullshit that it's appearing again. I can't really tell if this is the beefier version because of the black paint, but it looks like it. I thought it got fixed.

    +1 on the YZ forks. Fair bit of work though.

    Hope you heal well and fast and get BM off their arses to really look into this. I'll be posting this everywhere. That's for sure. I get the idea that lots of G650 owners aren't aware of the F650's history.
    #50
  11. Hurricane Bob

    Hurricane Bob formerly: Bomber1965

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  12. sop

    sop Adventurer

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    Having done defense work for a major insurance company for many years, I can tell you have an excellent product liabilty case....if you choose to pursue it.
    #52
  13. galland1

    galland1 n00b

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    With the previous history of this happening I am surprised she hasn't been contacted by lawyers wanting the case already. Heck, I would even think BMW's lawyers would have contacted them with flowers and a fruitbasket asking how they can make this right.:evil
    #53
  14. Wuwei

    Wuwei Long timer

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    It might be wise to say no more on this forum until you've spoken to a lawyer about it.
    #54
  15. mike

    mike Long timer

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    I dont know much aboot Bmw's, but that kind of failure is hard to fathom. Even on an old bike, with lots of wheelies. Especially on a new bike. I'd be up Bmw's butt with a road map and a flashlight.
    #55
  16. antiquewidow

    antiquewidow Adventurer

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    Once again thanks for all the support & info.... I cant do anything else so I mine as well do some readin on the net.
    #56
  17. RidgeCreek

    RidgeCreek Adventurer

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    Is it just me, or does it look like the failed fork of the G650 is a different design than the "redesigned" beefier fork of the later model F650s? To me it looks like more material was added to the bottom area, where the pinch bolt is, and the gusset above the axle is thinner.

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7633376&postcount=92


    Very disturbing. I'm going out to the shop to take a look at mine.

    TFD
    #57
  18. WayneC

    WayneC Long timer

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    A second metallurgist has looked at the pic's and his response is :-


    "It appears to be a one time overload fracture"
    #58
  19. lemieuxmc

    lemieuxmc Banned

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    "with flowers and a fruitbasket asking how they can make this right, by putting you on a new DR 650 with a lowering kit, or maybe a WR 250 for starters DAMMIT"

    I think this is what you should be hearing!

    No need to thank me...
    #59
  20. Hurricane Bob

    Hurricane Bob formerly: Bomber1965

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    when in doubt, make it stout.

    that's not stout.
    :bueller
    #60