Fuel strip fix?

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by wjrudo, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. wjrudo

    wjrudo homemade

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    I've been diving into this problem for a while and may be able to provide a fix. I'd like to get an idea what you've been paying for a replacement strips, if the strips come as an assembly(plastic support, wires, any other items in the tank, etc.) Labor, if it requires resetting the system, etc. Any pics would be helpful. I have a faulty strip in my '07 and have removed it just to look, but haven't bothered to replace it or get a price or anything. The fix would be a direct replacement strip made by an aircraft fuel system manufacturer, built to my specs. Just tossing this out there to see what response I get. Thanks.
    #1
  2. scooteraug02

    scooteraug02 Dog Rancher

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    It looks like it is $144.32 Mine was fixed under warranty and gets a 2 year warranty for that repair.

    [​IMG]
    #2
  3. Davis53

    Davis53 Been here awhile

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    Is the strip number ten?
    #3
  4. Callisto224

    Callisto224 Long timer

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    Yes it's number 10 in the drawing. I'm on my 3rd one now (my original went bad this summer). They've been covered under warranty and, according to my dealer (BMW Motorcycles of SE Michigan :clap ), they will continue to be covered under warranty.
    #4
  5. jzeiler

    jzeiler ADWrencher

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    You can continue to have your dealer replace them under warranty or you can fix them yourself -on the bike with $3.50 tool.

    Just zap the two middle pins in the fuel flange four pin connector with a scripto piezo electric lighter. Disconnect the connector and stick the opened end into the flange connector and click it two or three times. The sensor element in the strip is not as flexible as it should be and develops fractures causing an open circuit.

    The momentary high voltage arc from the lighter travels the length of the sensor substrate and fuses it back together. I am on my first strip and it failed two weks ago. After zapping it it has worked for two tank fulls.

    Note that during the first fill up the Miles to Empty function will re-calibrate itself and be back to normal after about 40 miles of driving.
    #5
  6. Condolini

    Condolini Fountain of useless info

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    Mine is an early build '06, doesn't have the strip. Cost almost $700 to fix it, not covered by warranty. Dealer had the strip, didn't have what mine needed. Oh we'll, I have a functioning fuel gauge for the first time in 4 years. :evil
    #6
  7. roadtrip22

    roadtrip22 Been here awhile

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    I have a 2008 GSA. I was informed that my fuel strip had to be programmed to the bike and a simple plug an play was not an option. Was I mis-informed or can a gs911 perform this task??
    #7
  8. acejones

    acejones Long timer

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    If you had known when you bought it that you would have to pay $ 175 a year for a functioning fuel guage would you have thought that to be a good deal ?
    #8
  9. jzeiler

    jzeiler ADWrencher

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    All I can say is that when I "repaired" my old strip (2009 GS) and I filled the tank my MTE read 163 instead of the normal 225. It counted up as I drove the first 39 miles and when it got to 205 it started counting down again. Sounds like it was re-calibrating itself. I will report again when it hits the low fuel warning and compare what that to what it used to be as well at the MTE on the next fill up.

    No need to pay $175 - just buy a $3.50 Scripto Lighter and zap your old strip back to life.
    #9
  10. WeazyBuddha

    WeazyBuddha Carbon-Based Humanoid

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    I seem to remember reading a thread in which someone posted about zapping the things into working order with the right amount of electricity but it sounded complex. A lighter? Really? :scratch

    :ear
    #10
  11. pancho

    pancho Been here awhile

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    Go for it Wheazy! I'll stand by with camera and fire extinguisher! We could become famous! LOL

    When are we heading to San Miguel Allende? I'm ready, or am I late?
    #11
  12. roadtrip22

    roadtrip22 Been here awhile

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    I like my bike to not blow it up.. I'd rather spend $175 for a new part than deal with insurance.. Convincing them my bike just blew up for no reason or because i dropped it may only work in movies..
    #12
  13. WeazyBuddha

    WeazyBuddha Carbon-Based Humanoid

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    Hey Pancho. I was thinking of you the other day.

    Yes; I'd very much like to do SMA. I need to get the KLR running but I suppose I could take the GS.

    We're doing a valve adjustment, throttle body synch on Saturday, you are welcome to join us. It'll be a bit of tech day, Cory will be doing work on his KLR and Jim will be helping me with the valves and throttle synch. I'm suggesting we get together at 107 cafe for breakfast at 8:30. I'll send an email shortly and will include you.
    #13
  14. dede

    dede Lefty

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    Has anyone checked to see if the newer model non strip (float) system would fit the earlier tanks and put out a signal or easily modified signal that the older system would read? Surely this has been thought of, I just haven't read it.
    #14
  15. wonderings

    wonderings Long timer

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    Would like to know that myself, I think I asked that very question, but did not hear if it was possible. I would rather pay a bit more and get a system that will be reliable.
    #15
  16. jzeiler

    jzeiler ADWrencher

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    Just sayin' the pump motor brushes are sparking all the time the fuel pump is running and it is immersed in the fuel. You have to have the right fuel/air mixture to get gasoline to burn or explode and in the tank it is just not condusive to burning unless you induce plenty of air. That is why a flooded engine won't run. But I'll admit I pulled it out of the tank to do it, just in case ( I couldn't explain it to the insurance guy either, at least not with a straight face). But it was still sopping wet with fuel when I pulled the trigger. No fire no explosion. But I highly recommend a full tank if you are not going to pull the strip out to do this. That would be the safest way to do it on bike.

    The good news is the MTE is still re-calibrating itself. Today I hit the low fuel warning @50 to E (normally it would be around 45). The fill up with 31 to go was 4.1 gallons. The MTE after filling was 199 vs.166 the first time and it also counted up as I drove but I only put 7 miles on it after fill up. I suspect that after two or three tank full cycles the MTE and low warning will be back to normal.
    #16
  17. WeazyBuddha

    WeazyBuddha Carbon-Based Humanoid

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    So what EXACTLY did you do?
    #17
  18. jzeiler

    jzeiler ADWrencher

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    After reading about Joel Wisman's discovery working with the BMW Parts Boss on the use of a Megger when testing failed strip he discovered the megger's high voltage was "reconnecting" the broken thick film resistor.

    I looked for a suitable source of high voltage just like a megger to do the same thing. Tried zapping the two center pins of the connector (sensor leads as the two outer are the heater leads) with a piezo electric fire place lighter with the butane disabled. I used a Scripto brand as the nose (where the spark and fire are) was round and had flutes that could be bent back to get the "sparky" bits up close to the desired two center pins. I wanted a short burst of high voltage with low current and no flame. The lighter worked perfectly.

    I did have the strip out of the tank for testing reasons but it was still wet with fuel when I did this on the work bench. There did not appear to be any "spark" leakage outside the mylar covering on the strip. So I would not hesitate to do this on-bike but would recommend a full tank just to be safe.

    It appears that the high voltage "finds" the microscopic crack in the substrate resistor material and welds it back together or forms a carbon trace that re-connects the break. I would like to get some strips to do some inspection and testing on to confirm this. Just know it works.

    I guess if I can get a hold of some bad strips I could do a video and post that.
    #18
  19. roadtrip22

    roadtrip22 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the update. Ill see what I can come up with maybe if I ask around enough I may be able to come across some old fuel strips for experimenting
    #19
  20. WeazyBuddha

    WeazyBuddha Carbon-Based Humanoid

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    Thanks for the info, Jzeiler
    #20