R1200GSw LC Wethead Final Drive change and Spline Lube Pictorial!

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by JimVonBaden, Mar 11, 2016.

  1. SinR1

    SinR1 Evil

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    Seeing several pictures with the rusting on the drive shaft and U-joint in here. I have a 2015 GS and had this issue with around 12000 miles on the bike. No tears with the boots...ect. Took my bike in last summer and BMW changed out the drive shaft under warranty. Dealer stated that the new drive shaft was now painted or coated. So hopefully this reduces the chance of this happening again. Haven't taken it apart yet to see if they were telling the truth about that though.
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  2. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid! Supporter

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    If so, that is a pretty recent development. There have been a couple 2016 driveshafts that came up rusty.
  3. taz_va

    taz_va Long timer

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    Maybe the dealer did it themselves? Or something.

    I still think stainless pinion and yoke would be nice.
  4. boxerbeat

    boxerbeat Adventurer

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    Yes it is, and yes it does. I was very disappointed to see this. :becca
  5. michaeln

    michaeln What're YOU lookin' at? Supporter

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    Jim, where can I buy a package of those bright green arrows we always see in your pictures. I think I could use them to keep track of where things are. Please advise.
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  6. boxerbeat

    boxerbeat Adventurer

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    I thank you for that though JVB.
    Luckily before I went on a 10k miles European journey last summer I took out extended warranty. In true dealership style, having sent these photos the service tech. His response was that they all do it. Funny that! Shocking really!
    He responded pretty quickly to my first email and then I sent him the image of the bubbling paint asking whether they all do this too. Guess what?! Nothing since!
    Having looked closer at the gaiter it seems it may have never been a proper "seal". Possibly mis-shaped Gaiter?
    I'll be chasing the dealer tomorrow. Thanks for your response JVB :thumbup.
  7. michaellmcc

    michaellmcc Been here awhile

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    Jim et al,

    As usual, a very helpful discussion, particularly Jim's procedure for checking and lubing the FD. Unfortunately, I didn't see it until doing research over the past couple of days. Going forward, it'll obviously be something to watch.

    My riding since purchasing my 2014 GS three years ago has offered lots of "good news":
    - Just recently completed a 5,000 mile round trip to the tip of Baja and back. Isolated and remote.
    - Ridden all types of terrain and obstacles from Montana to Panama, sea level to 13,000+ feet.
    - Great Big Bend (Texas) trip this past weekend, including the boonies of Pinto Canyon and the Black Gap WMA.
    - “It” happened while traversing Fort Stockton on the way home, so immediately took a convenient exit.
    - Insurance paid for towing to a nearby motel.
    - Rented a U-Haul truck and brought the bike home yesterday with no problems.

    And the bad news:
    - Catastrophic driveshaft failure at the rear u-joint this past weekend. Note the rust and condition compared to the photos that Jim posted. I feel completely inadequate :flush !

    [​IMG]

    So I've got it apart as shown, but would like a little help re removing the broken drive shaft. A procedure or pointers from those who have done it would be much appreciated.

    Thanks to all,
    Mike
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  8. michaeln

    michaeln What're YOU lookin' at? Supporter

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    Was it noisy or hot or did it seem it had a lot of backlash before it blew?
  9. Daleah

    Daleah Long timer

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    This thread got me to wondering: would it be advisable just to pull the gaiter back from time to time to check the conditions around the ujoint? I realize you can't see the splines very well, but you can see if you are getting rust in and around the ujoint.

    Or is the possibility of not getting the gaiter back in place too much of a risk to do it very often (like at fluid change time)?

    I guess the first question i should ask is: can you pull backt the gaiter without dropping the FD down?

    thanks

    Dale
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  10. michaellmcc

    michaellmcc Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the question. I should have mentioned the symptoms...
    1) Slight increase in backlash (greater "clunk") when putting it in gear the last couple of days
    2) Noticed additional backlash on the day of failure when accelerating after passing, etc.
    3) Sudden vibration and noise preceded failure, so I pulled over. Had to take the exit so rode it with noise and mechanical slippage. Finally failed completely and the engine would not drive the rear wheel, just spin the shaft.

    Mike
  11. hojo in sc

    hojo in sc Long timer

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    If I'm not mistaken, Jim recommends a lube every 6,000 miles.
  12. Bikerboy108

    Bikerboy108 Pat from Jersey

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    I added to the group knowledge on post #84 ...I did mine at 20,000 miles and it really didn,t need it... Unless you are doing The Baja and water crossings once a month I think thats way overkill.... 6,000 for a rear fluid change ok ...but spline lube ???
  13. Daleah

    Daleah Long timer

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    i get the lube every 6000 miles, but you could pull the gaiter back every week/month/100 miles/etc. between lubes too. I'm just wondering if that adds value or increases the risk?
  14. emidyl

    emidyl Been here awhile

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    hey Jim,
    what are your thoughts on using something like ACF50 for a quick spray around the internals after an inspection and spline lube? I saw someone mention it in an earlier post. Wondering if any reaction with lube.
  15. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid! Supporter

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    You wont get the full value, but you should be able to see if heavy rust exists. You can also spray rust inhibitor in there. It will not save the splines, but might help. Definitely worth looking for standing water on a regular basis, especially if you do deep water.
  16. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid! Supporter

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    Agreed. IF you do a lot of off road, definitely every 6K. If all street riding, 12K is enough IMHO.
  17. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid! Supporter

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    Not needed every week, unless you are constantly off road. It would increase the risk as the clips holding the gaiter in are not designed for that much on and off action.
  18. boxerbeat

    boxerbeat Adventurer

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    All I can say is Wow!!!! Really shocking that this can happen imo. If it wasn't for people like JVB I would have never have known to do this maintenance. Before I even saw your post your example is just what I was explaining to the BMW service tech with regard to just how far this problem can go. I'm glad you came out unscathed! I thought mine was bad, but after talking to the dealership their reply was "they all do it" and he's "seen a lot worse". Clearly now so have I. Why it's not mentioned in any BMW maintenance docs is beyond me. After 30 years of GS you'd have thought they'd have picked this one up. In the U.K. if a car's drive shaft UJ boot is torn and it is exposed to the elements like what GS UJ's seem to be it would not pass its fit for road use test. Forgive if you've already stated this, but how many miles had it done?


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  19. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid! Supporter

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    Other than the very unusual situation with previous models, this was not common until the GSw. I'm not sure if the older bellows sealed better and kept water out, or worse and let the water drain out. I do expect that BMW will revise the bellows at some point as these situations continue to happen.

    In the mean time, I would suggest everyone check/lube at the 6K, then every 12K after that. More if you do a LOT of water crossings.
  20. taz_va

    taz_va Long timer

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    I advise people to simply look at the bellows at least once a day--don't pull it apart, but make sure it looks like it's sealed and in place. For whatever reason, every now and then, mine completely pops off/open. I forgot to check it a couple of times and some rain came through, and I have some small spots of rust (from rain drops, nothing like any of the pictures here), because it had popped open before the rain.

    I'm going to order a new one when I get a chance.