A True "Water Cool" GSA story of Recovery and Redemption: Yukon't make it up!!

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by ExodusRider, Jul 8, 2019.

  1. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    Summary Recovery Tasks if Your GS is Completely Submerged under Water / Water logged? i.e. FLOODED!

    Depending on how much water and how long, I would guess a subset of these.

    Tools:
    1) all your typical tools for maintenance along with some heavier duty tools for supporting the bike and breaking the nut/bolt loose
    2) Service DVD / manual for your bike
    3) YouTube / ADV forum / JVB's videos..


    First things to do once you get your bike on dry land:

    1) Change your engine oil / final drive oil initially . dispose of properly please.

    2) Remove spark plugs, clean them.. start engine w/out to clear out water from chamber

    - This assumes water wasn't high enough to submerge the battery and electronics.. if it did, it might be safer to disconnect the battery / remove it to a different area to dry and trickle charged back up.

    - Drain what you can and let everything dry out as much as possible; You might even want to lay your bike on it's side to allow for any other flooded area to drain... puddled area will take forever to dry properly.

    3) Use WD40 / brake cleaner into engine chamber to clean / remove water/moisture

    4) Open Head Cover and let water drain out .. clean the cams, chain, etc


    Areas to Focuse on during the Recovery Period:
    1) Change all Fluids that may have been affected

    a) Engine Oil / Final Drive Oil for sure
    -change them initially and "once" you get bike running, change them again after running the engine / rear wheel abit to move oil through the system..
    -your last oil change needs to show clear oil
    - you could use cheap oil for the first few changes since you'll be dumping them quickly anyhow

    b) Brake fluid Flush / Clutch Fluid (as needed) if they were submerged / contaminated.
    -if your brake feels mushy and looks like fluid separating in the repository, probably introduced water /air into your system

    c) Clean and lube your transmission/FD/ shaft spines
    -Water will sure pool in the rubber boots, so make sure to remove them and drain that area

    d) Change your coolant if affected

    2) Tune up related items
    a) Air Filter
    b) Spark Plugs
    c) Clean your injectors

    Cleaning and Greasing
    1) Using something like CRC Electronic contact cleaner to clean / dry any electronic connection points you can get access to.. and the Dieletric grease to seal your connect with.

    2) Re-lube / grease any mechanical contact points that would normally be lubed at the factory / dealers

    General Overall items
    1) Check your tires/ wheels / sensors
    2) Compartments under seat will pool water and damage your paperwork, etc.
    Don't forget to check / clean that out..


    Last minute thoughts:

    Every situation is going to be different but if your bike is completely submerged, be open to the idea that the wire harness has to be replaced.

    After all , it's the foundation for all things electrical.. and many ghost issues may spring from it.. so the time energy spent tracking electrical issues down could be used to replace the harness ..

    Corrosion / rust / shorts often don't show up til months down the road

    Finally, don't give up on working on a submerged bike.. especially if she's new enough and saving her would be well worth it.. not to mention that knowledge, the hard earned satisfaction, and free table dances you'll get when she's up and running again..

    Ride Safe, and if you have to go down.. go down into a Lake! LOL
    #41
    overtone likes this.
  2. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    I'm clearly not a mechanic but I did stay at the local Holiday Inn Express on the night of the crash!!

    Without a doubt learned alot though .. made alot of mistakes, and pretty certain I went round-about rather than more direct or systematically in some areas.

    A learning process for sure, but by all means.. any and all mechanics / gear heads out there?

    Please share your knowledge.
    What you would have done first / differently and what I could have done better?

    We're always learning...

    Thanks for reading and contributing
    #42
  3. m931a2

    m931a2 Adventurer Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2014
    Oddometer:
    70
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    Great.. I wanted my first GS to be a water salvage from the Houston storm a few years back but couldn't pull the trigger due to a lot of things so I got a used one that works just fine. I suspect I would haver gone though the same issues minus the animals that had to get sacrificed for your bike to work

    Now I still want to know what's wrong with the harness!!! Sorry I'm just wanting to know what the water could have done to it to break it or if it was damaged from the crash.
    #43
    ExodusRider likes this.
  4. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    LOL.. True.. in the back of my mind... the harness was an easy suspect to point at but extremely painful to prove.. so I was avoiding eye contact with it at all cost : P

    The OEM price was $900 for Main and $300 for Engine Harness I think.. so I was willing to take a chance on $200..

    Besides, unlike cars.. how many GS end up in a Lake / flooded versus just getting into an accident, being categorized as totaled and then become parted out.
    #44
  5. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    In Texas we're allowed to get a salvage tile and register her legally for the road. You have a form to fill out that list some major components that you replaced ( such as engine, frame, etc) along with general description of tasks you completed to make her road worthy.

    Then you have her state inspected, pay the registration fees and good to go. I think getting registered cost about $150-$200.. been awhile.

    Cost wise, if I don't include the $2000 I had to pay my buddy to fix his truck or the upgraded luxury items like the premium wheels or LED lights, I would say it cost me about $3500 - $4500 in total.. more time than cost really.

    But truly, the knowledge I learned from this project was well worth $3500.. a "crash" course in bike mechanics .. SOLD!
    #45
    JimVonBaden and Richarde1605 like this.
  6. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    Send me your address... I will ship you the harness and you can tell the rest of us. LMAO!
    #46
    Deano747 and nk14zp like this.
  7. Myll

    Myll Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2018
    Oddometer:
    101
    Location:
    Illinois
    Good on you for the effort. That leaves some room for after market items and the gremlin chasing.
    #47
  8. shreksbrother

    shreksbrother Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2019
    Oddometer:
    146
    Location:
    Auburn Hills, MI
    I loved your stories! I'm currently trip planning to Alaska for next July.

    Biggest takeaway for me? I can bring a shotgun with me. Makes me feel infinitely better about sleeping in a tent in rural Canada and Alaska! Added that X-Caliber and the Canadian paperwork to my to-buy list.

    Thanks for sharing!
    #48
    ExodusRider likes this.
  9. Lead Wrist

    Lead Wrist More Gelände less Straße

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,095
    Location:
    Zer0-Zer0-Zer0-Zer0
    Gotta love it when there's happy ending - congrats to you for being persistent (or stubborn :lol3) to keep coming back to it and getting creative as to how to approach the topic until resolution! And, for being open minded to get into what you were not familiar before, with positive attitude and bringing it to successful closure :beer!!

    Considering how much of the bike you've replaced, short of part of the frame w VIN# which is old, you do have almost totally refreshed bike... If you were to find used front frame that has clean title VIN#, you could totally rebuild that bike to be a whole again and have clean one!

    Well done and well documented!! :clap:clap

    :thumb
    #49
    mikegc and ExodusRider like this.
  10. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    Ha,
    I was tenting at a state park in Seward, AK by the coast on that trip.. 2:00am in the morning someone fires off a shotgun... I peak out and see tents light up one by one..

    I grab the shotgun and hide in the tent for 15 mins before being able to sleep again... ahhh good times..

    Your other take away should be ??
    You can ignore the first 4 "watch for widelife" signs... its the 5th one that will get you!!
    #50
  11. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    Good point on the frame / new VIN idea.

    If I were to sell her now, the sum of her whole would be less that the sum of her parts.

    Ie. Would be practically giving her away..

    But the sum of her parts on a clean frame..hmmm.. sounds like another project
    #51
  12. ckindt

    ckindt Been here awhile Super Supporter

    Joined:
    May 9, 2008
    Oddometer:
    382
    Location:
    Omaha, NE
    Isn't there more than one VIN?
    #52
  13. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    Normally on the frame and on the engine I'm told..
    #53
  14. Lead Wrist

    Lead Wrist More Gelände less Straße

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,095
    Location:
    Zer0-Zer0-Zer0-Zer0
    There's only one VIN and it's usually stamped somewhere on the frame and the same number may be on one of the forks and/or elsewhere but it's all one VIN. There were, in the past, numbers on engine, transmission etc etc which could be all correlated per Certificate of Authenticity if you were buying classic car or older motorcycle (lets say '74 R90S or that era bike) as all that info (VIN/Engine at min) were all stamped on the frame and visible to verify etc...

    When it comes to new-er bikes, even if all those numbers are known, it's hard to track all of that info down and correlate. I'd guess there could/should be a record somewhere in Berlin as to which # engine went into which VIN bike, same for trans etc... I've never heard of anyone closing that loop nor that may matter - as long as the title ie. VIN is clean, that's what the most would worry about...

    As always, ymmv... :deal
    #54
    ExodusRider likes this.
  15. Lead Wrist

    Lead Wrist More Gelände less Straße

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,095
    Location:
    Zer0-Zer0-Zer0-Zer0
    New front frame from a dealer which would come w title ie. new VIN runs ~$3000. On occasion, someone may part the bike with clean title so you can get front frame, with existing VIN, for less then virtually rebuild that VIN with your parts... :D
    #55
  16. pistole

    pistole Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2013
    Oddometer:
    1,950
    Location:
    earth
    Liked the bit about the shotgun. Nothing more reassuring than a couple of rounds of Double O
    #56
  17. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    True, I carried Slugs for the bears and actually hunted rabbits and pheasants with the 22s / small pellet shots.

    Most places you need hunting licenses.. but there were places on the trip that were pretty remote for me to sound off a few shots :).
    #57
    Some Beach likes this.
  18. tzracer

    tzracer Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2011
    Oddometer:
    140
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    Usually when you purchase a new frame, it is stamped with the original VIN. The old frame (at least the steering head) has to be returned.

    At least that is what we did when I worked at Buell (HD did the same).
    #58
  19. Kyle K

    Kyle K Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2018
    Oddometer:
    57
    Location:
    Grand Canyon, AZ
    I feel bad for the animals...seems like you're riding or driving too fast for conditions if this is how it ended up both times.
    #59
  20. ExodusRider

    ExodusRider ExodusRider

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,365
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    I would hardly say going 50 or 60 mph is too fast..

    true, I could have been going 25 mph to help avoid them eaiser, if I KNEW at that point they were going to cross, being that they are "so predictable"..

    Next time my ride to Alaska, I will pomise to ride 45 mph up and back.. that will take me ohhh 2 years?

    And the animals, well.. trust me .. someone or something ate them eventually.. be it another bear, vultures, bacteria..it's the circle of life my friend.. dont lose sleep over it..lol
    #60