Drone's BMW G650 XCountry Mods

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by DRONE, Apr 6, 2009.

  1. ALPM

    ALPM X Challenged

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Oddometer:
    170
    Location:
    NH
    Nicely done! :clap After sitting and watching a light go through two full cycles as I sat there on my bike :huh and just blowing through it in frustration, I will be adding those magnets asap!
    #21
  2. N[]vA

    N[]vA Adventure Geek

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2008
    Oddometer:
    8
    Location:
    Cape Town, South Africa
    Holy shit!

    Awesome pimping man, makes me want to own a Xcountry again =[
    #22
  3. Cruz

    Cruz Lost but laughing.

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    7,778
    Location:
    Northside Brisbane, Qld Australia
    Will have to have a listen to yours then.
    #23
  4. novaboy

    novaboy Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Oddometer:
    648
    Location:
    Rothesay, New Brunswick, Canada, eh
    Nice job, your bike looks awesome. I thought I was doing well, with adding a windscreen, handguards, tankbag, and a ADV RIDER sticker. LOL I'm gonna need a second job to keep up to you. LOL

    Congrats, on great looking bike.
    #24
  5. fronton

    fronton Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    291
    Location:
    Boise, ID
    which windscreen did you go with? Got pics? I am contemplating the $300 freaking Cee Bailey euro. Please share
    #25
  6. novaboy

    novaboy Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Oddometer:
    648
    Location:
    Rothesay, New Brunswick, Canada, eh
    I went with the the really expensive BMW one. I didn't want to mess around with aftermarket ones that may not fit well.
    #26
  7. fronton

    fronton Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    291
    Location:
    Boise, ID
    did you ever ride it without? does it make a big difference with?
    #27
  8. matloik

    matloik kludge

    Joined:
    May 23, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,524
    Location:
    Hood River
    Not trying to be a stick in the mud, but it might be best if we don't repeat everything about the Xcountry that's been discussed already in this thread:

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=290240

    When in that thread, the "Search this thread" function works super-fantastic. :thumb
    #28
  9. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    5,051
    Location:
    Chambers Bay, WA
    Over $3000. You can cut that cost in half by skipping the first 5 mods.
    #29
  10. erezj

    erezj n00b

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2009
    Oddometer:
    9
    I'm looking into buying a 2007 x country, but its a bit too high, how can I adjust the hight?
    #30
  11. matloik

    matloik kludge

    Joined:
    May 23, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,524
    Location:
    Hood River
    #31
  12. Somber

    Somber Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    Oddometer:
    351
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    3 fairly simple things you should be able to do...

    the first two don't require any new parts:

    1. adjust the lollipop on the rear shock, depending on how much adjustment you drop on the back, you may wind up sitting low in the back, if so, you can go to #2

    2. You can slide the front forks up through the clamps to drop the front down to get you lower and maintain a balance front to back

    3. you can source an 09 seat, I haven't had a chance to compare them myself, but everything I've read say that the 09 seat is lower

    you should be able to get quite a bit of drop between those three things... I went the other way and raised my 09 significantly to better fit me, I did options 1 and 2, and I did a variation on 3 by taking it to a upholstery shop that did a terribad job and so I wound up ripping it apart and going back to stock, but that is always another option too- having someone mod your current seat...
    #32
  13. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    5,051
    Location:
    Chambers Bay, WA
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Bought a 18 liter tailbag from RKA to match the tank bag. Because the TT “large” luggage rack is so small(!), I put some stiff plastic into the bottom of the bag to keep it from slouching. Mounting it to the TT rack was not 100% straightforward but I ended up with a nice secure mount. In there I’ve got 2 liters of gas, 2 liters of water, a fairly large toolkit, a pair of ROK straps, my air compressor, a rain cover, and some toilet paper. In a squeeze, it expands 5" higher. The tankbag will do that too.

    For panniers, I tried using some soft bags but they were either too small, or hung funny, or looked funny, or blocked the gas cap. So, even though I think hard bags are the wrong look for this bike (after all, it’s not a F650 GS), I broke down and bought a set of Hepco-Becker pannier racks from Adventure Motostuff.

    The HB racks mount to the welded rear footpegs and to the passenger handles. I removed those handles when I added the TT “large” luggage rack, however with a little muscle power I was able to get the HB racks to mount up OK without making any more changes. One nice plus to this setup is that the crossbrace goes under the fender and supports it really well. As mentioned earlier, I don’t want a tail tidy because I ride a lot on wet roads.

    The right side of the HB rack is pushed out from the frame farther than needed (8” from the center of the taillight), but it’s still not pushed out as far as the muffler side (11”). If you mount identical sidecases, you end up with the rear end being 3” wider on the left side and the bike looks lopsided. And, unless you’re real careful about weight distribution in the two cases, the bike actually WILL be lopsided!

    To fix this, I bought a Seahorse 710 ($42) and a Seahorse 720 ($44) from Fuerte Cases. Both these cases are 20”x15”, but the SE-710 is 2” narrower than the SE-720. With these cases mounted, my muffler side is only 1” wider than my gas tank side, and since I can’t put as much stuff in the SE-710 as the SE-720, I have a good chance at not being lopsided. Some people might say that it looks lopsided anyway because the two cases are different depths, but this is what I decided to do and I like it. Total width is 31”.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    To mount the cases, I used this really neat $50 kit from Happy-Trails. The way it works is the bottom lugs are fixed in place and carry the weight. The upper lugs rotate and are held in place with knobs. Note that the upper lugs carry no weight and are in fact mounted BELOW the top rail of the rack. The upper lugs keep the cases from self-ejecting on rough roads.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    To mount the cases, you place the case on the rack using the lower lugs only, then press your leg against the case as you pop open the latches. Allow the case to open far enough to grab a knob with one hand while you rotate the lug into position with the other hand, then tighten the knob. Takes about 30 seconds per case. One caveat—when mounting the cases, make sure you mount them far back enough to let you get to the gas cap. I totally forgot to do this but got lucky—I can just barely do it.

    [​IMG]
    #33
  14. lady bikermouse

    lady bikermouse Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2009
    Oddometer:
    47
    Location:
    South Africa
    Hi Drone

    Thanks a stack for the trouble you went to to put this thread together!

    I now know exactly what I want to do with mine (once I get it, and once I make up my mind whether I should get the '07 or the '09.....:confused )

    happy travels on your cool bike!

    regards

    lady BM
    #34
  15. mwolff

    mwolff Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2004
    Oddometer:
    235
    Location:
    Mendocino
    Any body on the west coast with a used X-Country for $6K or less?

    Mwolff
    #35
  16. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    5,051
    Location:
    Chambers Bay, WA
    There's an '09 with ABS and handguards, under 1000 miles, asking $7100 in the Seattle Craigslist. It's been posted there for a while. Not sure you could get it for $6000, but you could try! But the ABS and handguards alone make the bike worth $1000 more than a non-ABS bike without handguards.
    #36
  17. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    5,051
    Location:
    Chambers Bay, WA
    [​IMG]

    My tail plate finally arrived. 6061 powder-coated aluminum a full ¼” thick. 16” wide at the front and 13” wide at the rear and 8.5” deep. It uses the Touratech “large” luggage rack as a base. Simply removed the Touratech plate and replaced it with the new plate using the 4 Touratech mounting bolts.

    In the pic below, that’s a 29” wide duffel on the bottom with my tent, sleeping bag, downmat, raingear and extra clothes. The plate is wide enough to support the bag with very little droop.

    [​IMG]

    Even though I have the steel subframe on my '09, I think I'm going to have to go real easy on dirt and gravel when I'm fully loaded. The weight from those duffels (plus the cases) is cantilevered pretty far back. Luckily, I have relatively poor off-pavement skills so going slow and easy won't hamper me very much. (Edit: False! Rode the Lolo Trail fully loaded with all my gear and hit some really bad bumps. In fact, broke a peg bolt on one. But subframe handled the abuse just fine.)

    In the next pic, the plate disappears under my RKA tail bag. Perfect! Not too big and not too small!

    [​IMG]

    I’m not sure if there is any interest, but my guy has agreed to do up a batch of 10 of these if I handle the details. So I’ve started a thread in the Vendors section with more pics and all the info. Here's the link--G650 XCountry Rear Luggage Plate
    #37
  18. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    5,051
    Location:
    Chambers Bay, WA
    I've had two mishaps with this bag in the 1st 500 miles of use. Both happened on dirt.

    [​IMG]

    Mishap 1--I zipped the zipper so that each of the sliders was halfway around and met in the middle toward the rear of the bike. As I bounced along on dirt, the zippers unzipped themselves until my water bladder bounced right out of the bag and hit me in the middle of my back going over some washboard. 1-liter fuel bottle also self-ejected. Found the bladder but never did find the fuel bottle. Solution is to keep one slider all the way zipped and the other one all the way unzipped. This seems to be working.

    Mishap 2--Washboard then a big pothole and the entire bag separated from the bike and ended up in the mud. I was using it to carry 2 liters of fuel, two liters of water, and my tools. Total weight--22 pounds. This happened on two different trips, so not a fluke. Apparently, if there's enough weight in the bag and the up/down motion is severe enough, the Velcro straps simply let go! Solution is to reduce the weight when going off asphalt. Not exactly the solution I want. If it won't carry the stuff I need it to carry, how is that a good deal for me? Maybe my new large luggage plate will work better keeping the bag attached to the bike. (Edit 6 months later: the ejections only happened with the small TT plate. No ejections after I switched to my large tail plate.)
    #38
  19. fazer6

    fazer6 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2007
    Oddometer:
    286
    Location:
    Tempe, AZ
    Mod the velcro straps to fit buckles--problem solved
    #39
  20. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    5,051
    Location:
    Chambers Bay, WA
    I agree, but how would I do that? Don't own a sewing machine, much less one able to sew heavy vinyl-backed cordura. I'm a lifelong backpacker and pretty clever with straps and coming up with my own whizbang mods to some of the packs and tents I've owned, but I avoid sewing. When I really really had to, I used a speedy sewing awl. I have a boxful of fastex tri-glides, d-rings, buckles and the like but don't see how they could be used in this situation. Got a specific way to do this?
    #40