New here and want advice (and venting hehe)

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by 1911MotoChick, Aug 22, 2014.

  1. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    Hello!

    I've been lurking here for awhile but this will be my first post :)

    I started riding dirt 9 years ago but a year and a half ago I got my first street bike, a Moto Guzzi V7 Classic. She's an awesome first bike but I like long all day, weekend or week long rides and wanting something more appropriate for that (and something with some more umph!)

    So, I have my eye on a F700GS. Thinking it's more street than dirt and lighter than the 800 but can still go on some dirt if needed/wanted. I didnt care for the triumph or any other bike similar to the BMW's aesthetically. I will be test riding one tomorrow, but so far that's the one I have my eye on.

    So, question is, does anyone have anything negative to say about that bike or BMW's in general? Are they generally reliable? Are there any known issues I should be looking out for?

    I have had issues with my Guzzi, including:
    The evap canister was building pressure in my tank and had to be replaced (during a week long moto trip, every time I stopped I had to remove my cap in order to let it vent thoroughly or else it would make a sound and build a ton of pressure)
    The header bolts rattled out when I was 250 miles away from home (dealership "fixed" and they rattled loose again, finally a personal mechanic fixed it)
    The kickstand comes down while I ride (replaced it w/ a new one and it STILL comes down, finally bent the peg where the spring is hooked to give it more tension as apparently it's a design flaw)
    Shit just rattles loose all the time (I know this is to be expected but its worse than my dirtbikes ever were and I dont see any issues like this w/ my GF's Bonneville)
    A huge GASH in my vapor line that I just found while removing my tank which leads me to my newest issue...
    When I took the tank off to install the air filter, due to the ethanol in our gas here in the states, the plastic tank has swollen and I cannot get it back on. Trying to get a replacement under warranty but i'm not hopeful. It is literally un-ridable (I was going to zip tie it and slap the seat on and ride, but the seat wont go on). So I will probably be spending 1k on a new tank plus another few hundred to coat it with some ethanol protectant.

    Sorry, I seem to be venting now!

    Anyways, normal wear and tear, loose bolts, ok sure, that's usual maintenance to me. After much research I have found all my issues are common issues w/ Guzzis. So I am trying to see if there's any "issues" I should be aware of on BWS's, or particularly the 700GS.

    I did do some searches, primarily here, but overall can't find much to complain about.

    Anyways, thanks for letting a girl vent! Also, if I'm being over dramatic about the issues w/ the Guzzi, please tell me. I have been pretty patient with it, because I love it, but right now, I'm about done with it and actually pretty pissed. It seems to me that this is too much to go wrong on a fairly new bike. I have less than 10k on her.

    Thanks!
    Eileen

    PS, this is my Guzzi at Pebble Beach. One of my Pit Stops from my Solo NorCal to SoCal and back ride. About week and a half, all moto riding and bouncing around friend's, family and even landed a new client. Was a great trip!

    Attached Files:

    #1
  2. BlueRidgeKat

    BlueRidgeKat Daily Commuter

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    Here's all the problems I have had with the 700GS........... Zero.

    The only negative thing I can say is that "for my use" I found the gearing to be a little tall/fast/high whatever you prefer to call it, so I changed the 17T front spocket to a 16T same as the 800GS and that made it perfect for me on and off road. Some like the 17T stock gearing.

    I think the 700 is a super all around bike. Its not great at anything buts its good at everything, what more could you ask for. They say there is no such thing as the perfect bike but this is the closest I have came to finding one in 41 years of riding (started at age 11).

    I wanted the 800GS but wanted the tubeless tires on the 700GS even more. Recently picked up some sort of long sheet metal screw. Pulled it with needle nose pliers, plugged the hole, aired up and was back on the road in 14 minutes.

    I came within a cat hair of purchasing a Guzzi Breva 1100 a few years back but went with a Triumph Tiger 1050 instead. The 700GS is way better than that particular Tiger. And please vent anytime you want, its gives me something interesting to read. :1drink
    #2
  3. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    Excellent, good to hear :)

    Tubeless tires!! Yes, that's another thing. I have been fortunate enough not to catch a nail yet *knock on wood*
    #3
  4. sieg

    sieg Wearing out tires......2 at a time, day after day.

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    My wife has 40000 trouble free miles on her F650GS, I have 50000 trouble miles on my F800GS. They both use the same 800cc motor as the 700.
    #4
  5. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    Awesome!

    What's funny, on the guzzi forums, the stuff I mentioned was just normal almost. Like yeah , that happens...just do xy. And to some degree it's ok, and I even felt that way; but I'm thinking this is too much. I was riding with one guy on a guzzi and at every stop he had to sop up oil leaking from his engine. I took my bike in for service and a brand new Stone was brought in with the same issue.

    There's a few other things wrong with her, like when it rained a little my instrument panel had condensation inside, I couldn't see my tac till it warmed up. Same thing happens with my headlight when I wash it.

    It's frustrating because I am anal retentive about my shit, especially my motorcycles! I don't wait on services, routinely check for loose bolts, keep things lubed and all that.

    I'm glad to hear no issues because I was told my someone "oh doesn't matter what you get, you'll have all the same problems" and I argued no.

    Can't wait for my test ride! I'm stoked.
    #5
  6. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    Oh and to add to my frustration... We are leaving on a 9 day moto adventure trip in mid September and right now my bike is not ridable.

    That said, worse case I'm going to shave the mounting pucks enough to make that sucker fit and get bolted in, I just hate the idea of hacking it and having the tank 1/8" closer to gone bars than it should be but that's my last effort.

    Best case I get a new bike! Haha:clap
    #6
  7. JGoody

    JGoody Been here awhile

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    I wouldn't give up on the tank issue. My son's Ducati tank developed a bulge near the forks due to ethanol (past warranty) and the dealer got it fixed gratis as a safety issue. BTW I have an F650GS twin -- happy camper.
    #7
  8. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    Cool, I have a call in with the dealer as well as guzzi corporate. Neither seemed to say "sure bring it in!". They are checking on it and have yet to get back. I'll followup tomorrow with the dealer tho.

    Yeah the tank is just the cherry on the top and I'm mad cause I can't ride! This is the 3rd time she's been down for an extended period of time due to guzzi specific issues. But yeah, I know I'm grumpy about it now too so I'm on a kick it to the curb roll :)
    #8
  9. Rgconner

    Rgconner Long timer

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    6000 miles on mine since March 10th (B-day present!) and not a problem with it.


    I am a big guy at 250 and I flog it pretty hard, riding with FJRs and 1200GS, I am usually the little engine that could on our rides, unless a Weestrom shows up.
    #9
  10. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    My bday is march 7th!:wink:
    #10
  11. jwayne

    jwayne Long Rider

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    I have owned several BMW 's and the 700 is my favorite. I also have a Triumph Trophy which I don't ride that much cause I enjoy the 700.
    #11
  12. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    Nice. Did you have an recurring or multiple issues with any of them? Like what I described above?

    I guess my question is, is the amount of issues I have had normal for a bike or just for a guzzi :p
    #12
  13. ThirdUncle

    ThirdUncle Dusting my teeth

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    You sound like you've been riding long and hard enough to handle an F800GS. I haven't ridden the F700GS, but did try its 650 predecessor as a loaner for 3 days, and was not moved by it; it's a great entry level bike for noobs, shorter people and the less aggro rider.

    You can get the lowered seat and suspension on the 800 if you need it, and then you've got much grunt and an evil looking ride to boot (the crap out of).

    Then again, my crush recently turned orange, after riding a 450 in the trails for one crowded hour, and I'm dreaming of getting my legs around a KTM 690, just because it's so much lighter and more suitable to the offroad ambitions I harbour. But then again, once again, you need to be good with a wrench to go KTM, it would seem.

    But to answer your Q about GS reliability... it's bloody amazing (unless you get a lemon, maybe .0001 percent of the GSs out there). In May I rode my 800GS to LA and back here to Toronto when it already had 73,000km (45k mi) on it, after a couple of years of beating the bleedin' daylights out of it on the trails most weekends 5-6 months a year, but doing proper maintenance from day one, and I had not one problem in 10,000km of riding.

    The only real issue that seems to have arisen: the steering head bearings wear fast on the 800s, esp if you run dualsport or knobby tires. Mine went shortly after I put the Heidenau K60 tires on, and kept wearing out with TKC80s and now Mitas tires, maybe a set a year. Otherwise nothing unreasonable has gone wrong with the bike in 5.5 years.

    All that said, if you want muscle and to tour and go offroad, the KTM 1190 ADV is looking pretty desireable. But as stated, you need tech smarts / money to own these bikes. They perform better than most, but they have their flaws. And they're not cheap to buy. But just the idea of having 150hp and a bike lighter than an 800GS gets my wallet pulsating.
    #13
  14. Pete7874

    Pete7874 Been here awhile

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    Cracked outer tank cover - that's the only issue with my F700GS so far. Mostly an aesthetic thing - common issue. Just sad that after so many years, BMW still hasn't addressed it.
    #14
  15. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    Initially I was looking at the 650, then the 8. Both very cool and sat on them, felt like the 8 was a bit big; then I saw the 700 and was all :eek1

    I am not planning on taking it seriously off-road; mostly hey, here's a fun little easy off-road section, cool. Mostly long haul rides. The reason the 7 spoke to me more was it was, power wise, better than the 650 (from what I understand) and smaller and lighter than the 8 but with the same engine. I also want tubeless tires; lastly, after sitting on all of them, that one felt the best. I still have yet to ride it though.

    But, here's another question; do you think the 700 is worthy enough to take to Hollister Hills Easy Trails (Hollister Hills is an off-road park in Northern CA)?

    Honestly, last time I took my CRF230 out, it was so weird going from street back to dirt! I was like a noob all over again! Then I got my legs back and it was normal but man it was weird. That said, I sold my dirtbike quickly after that because I like the road better. But, I have been on some rides where we hit some loose gravel or fire road or had to pull off on some bumpy dirt park (to fix my kickstand!) and luckily, I think, my dirtbike background helped me handle a 450lb bike in some sand and such.

    Oooh KTMs are nice! When I was first starting out dirbiking that was like the mercedes of dirtbikes, from what I understood :)

    Thanks everyone for the info! Keep it coming! My GF is looking at me like :huh when I say I'm gonna get a new bike. She doesnt understand what it's like having your bike effed and you're grounded for weeks at a time because some stupid thing that shouldnt have broken, broke on your bike!

    Oh, and for accessories; comfort seat? Yay or nay? Is it that much more plushy than the regular? I have an Air Hawk I use for my guzzi and that helps loads for long rides.
    #15
  16. 1911MotoChick

    1911MotoChick Adventurer

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    Yikes! That's not good! Do they replace it while it's under warranty?
    #16
  17. bvfrvr

    bvfrvr n00b

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    This is something I don't quite understand... the 700 and 800 both list the same 798cc engine, but the 800gs has 15% more torque and 20mph higher topspeed..?

    Is that magic from the higher octane fuel recommendation? :huh
    #17
  18. yaycep

    yaycep Adventurer

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    A proper seat is a must from day one on. I tried both low and normal factory seats on my F650, but both start killing you after half an hour. You guys over there in US have more alternatives, I got myself a replacement from Top Sellerie in France.

    In addition, the wind protection may be an issue depending on your height and preference. You will want to consider some taller windshield instead of the stock tiny little piece of plastic.

    Some also say that the parallel twin vibrates quite significantly compared to others, but I don't have enough experience with any other 2/3/4 cylinder bike.

    Other than that, if you're an on-road rider, I can't see any disadvantage of having the 650/700 against 800. The power delivery is pretty much identical up to 6000 RPM, which is more or less the useful range on the tarmac anyway.
    #18
  19. Pete7874

    Pete7874 Been here awhile

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    They both recommend premium fuel. The F700GS just has a detuned version of that engine. The main noticeable difference is at upper rpms though, if you compare the torque curves. In daily driving at lower rpm, there is not that much difference, from what I hear.
    #19
  20. sieg

    sieg Wearing out tires......2 at a time, day after day.

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    The 650 (now a 700) is geared taller, 500 rpm less at 55 mph, but from a dead stop you can let the clutch out with no throttle and it will not stall, the 800 will. :deal So from riding them back to back, I like the state of tune of the 650 better than the 800, even though the 800 has more HP. At high way speed the 650 also feels better too. :huh

    Tank; It's just the outer tank that cracks, no leaks because they have an inner liner.
    Seats; My wife and I both like the BMW tall rally seat, but it's a little tall for her so she uses a BMW comfort seat. I have the tall rally. BTW if you are buying a new bike any good dealer will give any seat you want, so try them all, low, comfort, rally and standard. Our dealer will let you choose any one at no extra cost and has all of them there for test rides.
    #20