Boulevard of Broken BMW Dreams

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Cycles, Sep 9, 2014.

  1. squiffynimrod

    squiffynimrod maximum shrinkage Supporter

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    I'm sure many others besides me are very interested in these "additional electrical problems". Care to elaborate?
  2. theofam

    theofam Been here awhile Supporter

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    Cycles,

    I'm very happy for you! Nice thinking to approach Mr. Wells. I'm sure your gift with the written word swayed him to act. Although you jumped through more hoops than a circus dog, BMW's action is refreshing.
  3. BTL

    BTL No more snow!!

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    My faith in humanity is restored. Nice to hear some stories of misery have a positive outcome..:clap
  4. 2WheelieADV

    2WheelieADV Long timer

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    WOW, What an ordeal...
    It's an unlucky machine. But as for the brands, all bands can have their problems. Some more and some less. BMW's are no exception (although they can be more problematic than some others).
    The point is to ride what YOU feel like riding. A VStrom for one, can be 100 times more reliable, but if your heart is not in SVtrom, you still not going to enjoy it. On the other hand, many people riding beemers for over 100k miles with no major problems.
    The point is to ride what you enjoy, and enjoy riding it.
  5. thegraydog

    thegraydog 2 wheels X 6 ways

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    The story has been riveting, the Hilfigers were an indelible detail. But soldier on, Cycles: BMW has decided to participate, and we all want to hear, some of us want to hear, what is the actual problem.

    I too have been marooned with a dead bike. In my case it was a Suzuki, whose stators are shared with Arctic Cat snowmobiles. The mechanics of Salmon Idaho were not in the least confused, and so for a few, several benjamins we rode on.

    Whatever the outcome of your tale, BMW still suffers from being exotic, being tethered to distant ports. In my northern Arizona case, the excellent BMW shop is five hours south, and I suppose eight hours north. That restrains me, when I intend to go farther from, not closer to that support...
  6. DutchVDub

    DutchVDub Adventurous Pirate Supporter

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    Say what you will about HD but, they do have the best dealer network in the US. Even better, a lot of those dealers are open 7 days a week. Now if they only made a sport tourer.......

    I personally went with a Kawasaki and was able to get a 6yr unlimited mileage warranty with my bike. Hopefully I never need it, but with how much the C14 cost me I figured it would be worth the extra cost of extension even if it only ever replaces my TPMS sensors.

    Let us know what they find for further electrical issues, and keep us posted on BMW's help or lack there of.
  7. sandsman

    sandsman Shut up and ride!!!!

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    But there is a Honda shop in just about every little podunk little town. That is why I won't stray from that brand, and it's just as reliable as any and better than most. A Goldwing is a sport bike on steriods and hold the Tail of the Dragon record and the guy (Yellow Wolfe) on here does it with a darkside car tire on the rear......Go figure. But like if the bike doesn't move your soul, then you have to go with what does it for you.
  8. Don T

    Don T Roaming Viking

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    It's good to hear that BMW finally are stepping up to the plate :clap

    I'm already looking forward to your next RR.
  9. ssevy

    ssevy retired and riding the backroads

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    If I am reading this correctly, BMW's "stepping up" amounted to nothing more than paying a deductible and approving extra parts and labor for other electrical issues which were already present but could only be identified once the other stuff was done?
    The entire episode probably cost BMW less than one of their executive's lunch and bar tab. Happy for you, but not impressed with BMW.
    Folly1 and WhicheverAnyWayCan like this.
  10. dwj - Donnie

    dwj - Donnie Long timer

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    My thoughts as well. :deal But if the OP is happy all is well! :D
    WhicheverAnyWayCan likes this.
  11. MassiveLee

    MassiveLee Banned

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    +2 - The whole story still shows that BMW Canada sucks.

    There's a consumer law in Quebec that clearly says that any product must be supported for more than just its legal warranty, but to its expected usefull life. Basically, if you buy a TV warrantied for a year and it fails at 18 months, the manufacturer has no other choice than to warranty the product, simply because the life expectency of a TV is MORE THAN JUST A YEAR.

    Had the bike been bought in Quebec, BMW Canada or its dealer would have lost its cause in a heartbeat.

    Moral of the story, if you want to ride around the world, or accross the border, do not buy a BMW from a Canadian dealer :D
  12. Plane Dr

    Plane Dr Long timer

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    I don't know I cringe whenever I hear Canada and or Blackfoot...

    The small market seems to make things just that much more challenging, and I can't quite pin out down but I've had a hate on for Blackfoot always. Maybe it goes back to when we couldn't work a deal on a beautiful Bumblebee PD in the late 80's...

    Not that I have either problem any more.

    Glad things sort of worked out for the OP.
  13. Pongo

    Pongo Been here awhile

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    He bought it privately
    WhicheverAnyWayCan likes this.
  14. Anjelli

    Anjelli n00b

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    Thanks for a well-written report, most useful info.

    I cannot avoid the thought that if you were in no way hopping BMW would actually help you this wouldn't have created a false hope they would.

    I've been seriously looking at the BMW line, from the F800 to the 1200 and they are not only the most costly to purchase and service, but they also seem the most problematic.....and as such, lacking tangible support, I'll be getting another brand.

    If they had stepped up to the plate for our stranded OP, I would have viewed this quite differently.

    My 2cents......and my $many$ will be spent elsewhere
  15. MassiveLee

    MassiveLee Banned

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    And? if I buy a motorcycle privately, does it void BMW's warranty? The bike was just serviced at a BMW dealer and was 48 hours out of the legal warranty when it melted down.
  16. martinz

    martinz Runny-nosed Bluenoser

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    Seems for every inmate there are 10 opinions. Here are a few of mine.

    1. It has taken far too long for the cause to be diagnosed and repair performed.

    2. BMW Canada's response is still "too little - too late." How can they accept only partial responsibility? Insurance should not be paying for this.

    3. I would be really uncomfortable picking up the bike from the dealer without absolute certainty of the cause. It was not gremlins. It is not impossible to determine. And it was certainly not a "reversed polarity boost" - the irresponsibility of the suggestion is unbelievable. (I have a '86 Ninja 1000 that mysteriously started taking out alternator / generators. Actually it was taking out the regulator, which is encased in the alt/gen but I didn't know that until I diagnosed it using wiring schematic and multimeter. Then I had to find out why. It was tedious. Finally isolated a short/ground on the frame from a cooling fan switch installed by previous owner. Problems have causes. They can be hard to find but are not unknowable.)

    In addition, I own a R1150GS. I bought the older GS with low mileage, intentionally to avoid potential tech problems but if I'm honest, I'm much more comfortable with the reliability of my DR650 than the GS for an upcoming Trans-Lab trip (although maybe the GS will provide the more interesting "Adventure!")

    Thanks again Cycles. Your resiliency and humour are insipring and refreshing!
  17. Cow Boy Brad

    Cow Boy Brad brad1098

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    Cycles, one word for your next trip.

    Xanax
  18. newride

    newride Been here awhile

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    great to hear, ride on!:D
  19. Dracula

    Dracula I don't want a pickle! Supporter

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    is where we live.. but I think how boring it would be otherwise..
    Fact that the module burned out, if nothing wrong was done to it electrically, to my mind means that it shorted itself internally, possibly due to a manufacturing defect, then took the wiring with it. Not the other way around. Most probabilistic MTBF graphs would show increased rate at the beginning of an electrical device life, then a constant and later possible increase of risk. Would I hesitate to ride my 120,000 miles GS cross country again? Nope. Maybe if I went to South America I'd reconsider what bike and model I take, but not in Europe for example. And I would not take a bike I haven't actually worked on and ridden at least few times on long trips. Gone are the days when I used to fix my old bikes with a screw driver and set of wrenches while carrying a piston and set of piston rings just in case.. which I had to actually use once. Any piece of machinery can and will fail eventually. This is one example of worst case, no warning and total failure. As an owner I take that as a reminder that we assume risks and prepare for the worse without detracting from actual enjoyment of the bike. I moved from other brands to BMW 7 years ago and do not regret it, in fact I have not enjoyed riding any other bike as much as this one, reliability notwithstanding it has been surprisingly good. Minor issues like a cracked headlight and leaking front shock were covered in first year. Two fuel gauge strips later, one which I replaced at my own cost and did my own work (trip to the dealer would have made it just about even cost wise) even though I have the recall letter stating I basically have a never ending warranty on this part. A worn rear FD main bearing at 65k which gave enough warning. That's about it. Too much? reasonable? A bit of both I guess.. admitted no other modern bikes I owned gave me such issues, but then having chains to oil, adjust and replace was part of expected expense. So quality control may leave something to be desired perhaps in this age of globalization. Working on your bike as much possible rather than relying on dealer will help increase the confidence of knowing the machine and it's weak points along with being prepared. This was not something one could have prepared for, and I never actually read of such failure on a major electrical part on these bikes where most reported issues seem to be with the FD. It would be interesting to see how this ends up being resolved. If it were me stranded without a bike, I'd pay to fix it (assuming this is what the OP wants) and ship the parts to BMW; their good will and pride of craftsmanship should go at least as far as checking to identify the real cause.
  20. MassiveLee

    MassiveLee Banned

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    i'd go around the world with my 115,000 miles 1150GSA. Providing the only remaining electronics is the injection. Ditch ABS, servo-assist, and the bike has no reason to fail. Carry a final drive bearing, a seal and a few shims, a fuel pump, an alternator strap and HES. All parts not taking much room in a pannier. What else can go wrong? Knowing the bike helps and makes servicing easy.

    BMW's reputation to be he best RTW bike was built on older and simpler carbed GS, not today's Playstation on wheels ;-)

    Lee