New to me '98 R1100GS

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by cnmjr123, Apr 30, 2020.

  1. cnmjr123

    cnmjr123 Been here awhile

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    Hey everyone, new around here but long time lurker. Just picked up a '98 R1100GS with 61k miles on her. Came with stock BMW bags and SW motech engine guards. I commute 50 miles/day round trip and ride fire roads, 4x4 trails, and double track when I can.

    Looking for opinions:

    The stock panniers are decent, maybe a little small. One side is missing a lock and the other side has a decent sized crack that's been poorly repaired by the previous owner. I know I could re-key the set and reinforce the sloppy repair job but I'm thinking about a set of Happy Trails panniers. Does anyone have experience with HTs on an R1100?

    Is it worth putting ~$800 panniers on a $2000 22 year old bike with 65k miles?
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  2. lewisjr1

    lewisjr1 Long timer Supporter

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    I would look far a set of used racks. Ones for an 1150 will also fit.

    To those I would strap something like the inexpensive soft bags from Tusk that are available online. Twisted Throttle sells some soft satchels for a fair price, too.

    There are others. Surplus molle bags will strap to anything, as well.

    Welcome & post pics. We like bike pics.
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  3. PaulBarton

    PaulBarton Long timer Supporter

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    I don’t have direct experience with the Happy Trails panniers but I have purchased from HT before and feel they make a solid product and offer excellent customer service.

    I also think just about any hard bag will be better than the stock System Cases especially if they are already damaged/repaired.

    if you could make them functional for low/no cost then that might be worth it to have them.

    I would look at used rack/pannier options. For your off-roasting you may prefer soft bags. I would think a hard bag is better for your commute.
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  4. cnmjr123

    cnmjr123 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the quick replies. I take my time and browse eBay for used stuff, the stock bags work decently for now. I'm seeing new racks for ~$300. Once you figure in aluminum panniers, I might as well go with the HTs. I'd use them mostly for commuting and touring, Paul. For offroad, I've removed the passenger seat and grab handle and been strapping a dry bag. Seems to work well for day trips so far, I'm typically only carrying a first aid kit, a tool roll, some snacks, and water.
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  5. lewisjr1

    lewisjr1 Long timer Supporter

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  6. Jim Moore

    Jim Moore "You ain't black!"

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    That bike has a lot of miles (like hundreds of thousands) left in it. If you like it it's worth spending a few bucks to get it right. That said, it needs new front brake lines and a new HES ASAP. That's $500 right off the bat. So keep that in mind as you're shopping for bags.

    As a note, I repaired a leaking bag on my R1100RS with FlexTape (as seen on TV!). Funny enough, it worked really well.
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  7. cnmjr123

    cnmjr123 Been here awhile

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    Lewis, thanks for the pic for reference, drooling on my keyboard....

    Jim, thanks for your reply. I figured the bike had good amount of life left in it so that's nice to hear. The bike definitely could use a few things mechanically. I was going to bleed the front brakes because they feel soft on the initial lever pull and firm up slightly with pumping. It seems to have a little too much lever travel for my liking. I might as well install some s.s. brake lines, the OEM ones look pretty tired.

    Is it common to replace the HES when the bike runs strong? Or is replacing it a "better safe than sorry" repair before it leaves me stranded?
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  8. PaulBarton

    PaulBarton Long timer Supporter

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    I’d say the more common occurrence is wait til it strands you and then troubleshoot to discover it’s the HES but now you don’t have an excuse for being that guy.

    I bought a spare when my last 1150GS approached 100k miles. Just having it along prevented me from having to change it.

    I would at least source a spare HES so you are ready. It’s not a daunting task to change it but when the bike is running well sometimes it’s best to simply be prepared for when it isn’t. This is especially true on a new-to-you bike.

    Definitely go for stainless lines. That is a priority as you already describe an issue and, well , it’s your brakes.

    There are plenty of good options out there but I encourage you to use Nickwackett Garage - @bmwrench on here - Je makes them at his shop and he’s a contributor on ADVRider.
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  9. Jim Moore

    Jim Moore "You ain't black!"

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    The latter. It will run perfectly right up to the point where it stops dead and won't go one inch further. It's moisture-related so it usually happens in a rainstorm, which adds to the fun.

    @GS Addict on this site rebuilds them with fancy heat-resistant wiring for a reasonable price.

    Btw, I would definitely do the brake lines ASAP. That bike has really good brakes. They definitely shouldn't be soft.
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  10. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid! Supporter

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    :nod

    I just got one from him for my R1100RS. Mine was fried from overheating.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Replacement:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    This was the second failed one I have had. The other on a similar R1100RS, but the R1100GS has the same unit. Worth getting a spare, or just have it done over winter. You can get them from here: https://www.beemerboneyard.com/hallsensors.html But @GSAdict ones are definitely higher quality.
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  11. cnmjr123

    cnmjr123 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the replies, folks. I'll prioritize the brake lines, it seems like the consensus is Spiegler > Galfer. I've bled plenty of brakes with a vacuum bleeder but nothing with an ABS before. I've been doing some reading and it seems easy enough.

    I'll grab a spare HES while I'm at it. That procedure doesn't seem too difficult either.

    My bike has the stock charcoal canister which I'd like to remove. I noticed that the servo was unplugged sometime over the bike's history so it wasn't working anyway. I can't find a good resource on how to remove the servo R1100GS. I think I'll need to remove the 4 hex bolts holding it on.

    Regarding the tubing from the servo to the TBs: the existing tubing snakes under the battery and/or over the air box and seems difficult to replace with new tubing. I'm thinking either capping it above the "t" or capping each individual TB. Suggestions are appreciated.
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  12. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid! Supporter

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    Remove it, and all tubing, plus the canister. There are two hoses coming from the tank, one venting tank pressure, and one draining water from around the fuel cap. Run them down past the footpegs and cut them off at an angle.

    Different tank, same situation. See the two small tubes?
    [​IMG]
    #12
  13. tentative_rider

    tentative_rider Wanna Be On Gravel

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    back to the HT question, my best friend bought HT for his 1100 GS, rode them for years then put them on a KTM990, as far as I know they are still going strong.

    Very tough boxes and lots cheaper than some other options.
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  14. Mikeyfromgr

    Mikeyfromgr Been here awhile Supporter

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    I used jb plastic quick weld and a small fiber glass mesh screen to repair one of the upper attachment points on my oem cases. I would say that is now the strongest point in the cases. I've broken two rear foot peg/case points now and it's still holding strong after 10k+ miles. As for additional storage I picked up a knock off pelican case at harbor freight, removed the rear grab rail, used three u-bolts and sealed them with black utv silicone to seal up the bolts. Works great and is water proof.
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  15. cnmjr123

    cnmjr123 Been here awhile

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    Really liking the idea of the knock off pelican tail box. What are the dimensions of yours? Just finished removing the charcoal canister, servo, and tubing.
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  16. Whale Rider

    Whale Rider Been here awhile

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    I have heard that super glue with baking soda gives the right texture on the outside surface of the original panniers. Small left side pannier can be replaced with a bigger pannier from an RT if you fit a low muffler.
    Welcome to the forum.
    WR
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  17. feisty

    feisty Been here awhile

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    You picked a great bike with lots of life left in it.

    If you leave the system cases on it and drop it then you won't be stressed. Shiny new cases and you may be worried about them.

    Does the case without the lock still work without the lock? System cases of that era are a little weird where you need the key to do take them off, open them up, close them.
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  18. cnmjr123

    cnmjr123 Been here awhile

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    I appreciate the reply and agree regarding old vs new cases. I guess I was more worried about their integrity because of the repair job at one of the top mounting tabs. A friend of mine had a case on his airhead fail, throwing it's contents all over the highway! I guess I'm a little spooked :lol3

    The case without the lock works fine, thankfully.
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  19. feisty

    feisty Been here awhile

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    Yep. That would spook me.

    I've had great luck using the pictured product for repairs. That along with woven fibreglass tape. Glue the broken area together then reinforce it with the tape. Saturate layers of tape with glue. Super easy and silly strong and easy to sand and paint. Screenshot_20200503-133434_Samsung%20Internet.jpg
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  20. cnmjr123

    cnmjr123 Been here awhile

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    Update: removed the charcoal canister last night. An easy job once you locate all the components. The canister was rusted out and the tubing had a bit of charcoal in them.

    I also installed an after market, clip-on wind deflector to the top of the stock wind screen. At 6' 3", the wind coming over the stock screen was hitting me square in the eyes and was very loud in the helmet. While not the most attractive add on, I found it very effective on my highway commute today. It was so calm I didn't realize I was doing 90mph!

    Next up: S.S. brake lines!
    #20