Why is the bike so TALL? (F800GS)

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by Migs, Jan 13, 2010.

  1. Migs

    Migs Sometimes we cry with everything except tears.

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    Hi motolocopat:

    I ride all 3 bikes: ATV (Kawa Brute Force 7504x4i), KX250, and a Harley Police Special. I love all three, but I would have to say that my experience is more on the quad and the Harley.

    I used to race enduro years back, but I would love to get on a G800. The 650 with the gas tank in the back I don't like.

    Most of my riding in in caravans which are multi day affairs, with camping and mud. Those are really fun. The Harley I ride to work about 3 times a week (I love my HD!!)

    Migs
    #41
  2. conrado

    conrado Been here awhile

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    It's called F800GS, not G800.

    And all three (F650GS, F800GS and G650GS) have that "gas tank in the back".
    #42
  3. alexcorral

    alexcorral Long timer

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    The bike's not tall... You're short :rofl
    #43
  4. Bike4Fun

    Bike4Fun Smooth IS Fast

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    There is your first problem! :lol3
    #44
  5. omnivore

    omnivore SuperSportTourer

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    I sat on both the 800 and 650 today at the Toronto bike show.

    I also looked both over carefully. I personally like the aggressive appearance of the 800 much more, as well as the lace wheels, 2 discs up front, and of course the extra power. But I am 5'4" and 29" inseam, and the 650 fit me much better.
    After close inspection, I think the 650's rear shock could be fitted to the 800 to lower it a few inches, and the 800's forks have about 2" of room they could be slid up through the triples till they touched the bottom of the bar-maybe even father with a set of barbacks/risers.
    #45
  6. Bike4Fun

    Bike4Fun Smooth IS Fast

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    define "fits me better"!

    You can touch with both feet? Toes, balls, flat footed!

    Don't sell yourself short (no pun intended). You don't have to flat foot the bike. You don't have to be able to touch with the toes on both feet. You only need to put one foot down. Will this be a limitation off road..maybe? That depends on your off road experience. I've ridden off road for 10+ years and have never been able to touch both feet on the ground on any off road bike. You will drop the bike, accept it!

    The key is learing how to ride the bike! Stand on the pegs, have good balance and ride over/through the obstacle. As soon as you put your foot down to walk through the obstacle you have lost! You have just increased your chances of dropping the bike. Most people don't understand that!

    Don't have off road experience? Go buy an older 2 stroke for $1500 bucks get use to the height and riding off road then venture deeper off road with the F800. You don't have to go full bore on the bike the first week! I've had it for a year and I'm still hesitant to thrash it like I would a 450. Duh! I didn't buy it to thrash it like a dirt bike, that is why I have dirt bikes!

    Many people ride it like a dirt bike, good for them. I ride it to explore the world and most of the time you will not be in a situation where a 29" inseam is going to limit you. Certainly no fire road is a threat! Plan your route, have a ridding buddy and you'll be fine.

    Worst case scenario you lower the F800GS to help you out! Buy the bike you want, F800GS, and go have a good time! :freaky
    #46
  7. omnivore

    omnivore SuperSportTourer

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    Been riding dirtbikes since I was 9. I am 36 now.
    Current dirtbike is an 02 XR200 with 86 forks and shock for more offroadability.
    On the 800 , sitting a little sidesaddle, I can tippy toe one foot....that's all. But I can get balls of both feet down on the 650. Alone on asphalt, I can manage the 800 I am sure, but loaded up with gear or 2 up, it would be uncomfortable. And at $150+ per brake lever, I wouldn't want to drop a BMW GS many times if preventable. My old ZX7 was tough to manage like that. Everytime wifey got on it was precarious, or if she fidgetted at stoplights. Never dropped it but came close a couple times. The ZX7 wasn't taller than my GSXR, but the seat was so wide alot of my inseam was used up just to straddle it, whereas the GSXR's hornet waist makes getting feet straight down quite easy.

    I am primarily interested in streetriding anyways, so the 650 fits the bill more that the 800, especially since the tires I like come in 19's not 21's, but I prefer 2 discs up front, and who doesn't want more power? The 800 has it. I wish BMW left the electronics the same for both bikes in the engine power department. It'd be an easier choice then.

    Something I did notice was the lack of adjustment on the forks. FOr the $ of these bikes I feel that is unaccptable.
    #47
  8. Migs

    Migs Sometimes we cry with everything except tears.

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    Amigos:

    I think I'm gonna go for the F800GS after all. So far my 8 pals that bought these only complain about the rattle of the kick stand when off road and a little about the front brake noise. The dealer (a good friend of mine) said he still can't find where the noise in the front comes from, but I'm sure he is on it.
    I rode one with the low seat and my only fear was the high center of gravity. Certainly the low seat gave me more confidence.
    Any recommended options or must haves on this bike?

    -Migs
    #48
  9. capt_enduro

    capt_enduro tool whore

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    Time to brew me up a batch of cool-aid...

    But seriously, congratulations on your choice. I'm short, have the low seat and love the bike. Just over 10,000 miles on it this year. The low seat makes it a bit easier to get your weight forward on the airbox to load the front wheel contact patch a bit more.

    The must-haves are hand-guards, crash bars and a bash plate. I use SW-Motec and am very happy with them. Lots of folks like the Adventure Spec bars and bash plate. The only complaints have to do with tall folks' knees hitting the bars; not a problem in our case. Tires are another topic altogether. I have Tourances on mine and think they are perfect for my style of riding: 75% back-roads / 5% Slab / 20% fire roads.

    Don't worry about dropping the bike. If you ride it properly off road, it will get dropped from time to time. I tipped over a Triumph Sprint GT last week in a simple low-speed U-turn. (ouch!) That bike was not made to be toppled, so I'll stick klutz friendly bikes I can ride like a horse.

    The front brake does make a lot of racket off road - that's because it's a floating rotor design. Simply grab the rotor with your hand and give it a good shake, you'll see where the noise is coming from.




    :D
    #49
  10. Maddaddy

    Maddaddy Terradrifting

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    :lol3 If i only took pictures of what I did to my bike last weekend...I had to scoop the mud out where the charcoal canister used to be with a spoon.
    #50
  11. shuston

    shuston Adventurer

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    Maybe get a F650GS if you do not plan to travel off road much. Much lower overall due to lower suspension travel and less off road ability.
    #51
  12. Ceri JC

    Ceri JC UK GSer

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    At a fraction under 6'2", I'm no comedy giant, but part of the reason I got the GS is that it has ergonomics ideal for a reasonably tall male. Designed by Germans is parts of the equation, I'm sure. Germanic people are generally tall, even by American standards (which on a global scale, is already very tall). Considering 90%+ of the best bikes in the world (IE all the Jap stuff) are generally designed for pygmies and lack any real options to make them comfortable for taller folk, I'm not overcome with huge amounts of sympathy. :D

    Suspension and ground clearance because it is real off-road bike (rather than an "Adventure-styled" bike, like some) are probably the main reasons though.

    Personally, ergos aside, I love tall bikes: much easier to see further from a higher perch and safer too: cagers can see you over the tops of other vehicles so much more easily. I even went so far as to raise my seat height further over stock. In terms of, "can a fairly short/normal height person ride one?", I'd say the answer is yes: I've never found tall bikes a problem (even when younger) and on 100% offroad machinery that even I couldn't get both feet down on at once. You soon learn to adjust for it. Gaston Rahier (centre, below) had no problem riding proper offroad machinery at a world class level, despite his height.
    [​IMG]
    #52
  13. Migs

    Migs Sometimes we cry with everything except tears.

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    That picture of the riders really does tell a story! I'd like to see how they stand when they stop, and how they get on when they start! -Migs
    #53
  14. Keithy

    Keithy Chaotically Keith

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    My mate who I describe as "an inch or so shorter than me" and who must never be called "midget" (nasty temper) has a brick to rest a single toe on at the start line of motoX events....... It's never held him back......Not sure whether dwarves couldn't wear stiletto boots though! :evil
    #54
  15. Maddaddy

    Maddaddy Terradrifting

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    They actually start and stop by stepping on or off the bike as the roll on or off the throttle from the left side. meaning the get on the bike or off the bike as it moves or comes to a stop.
    great for Dakar, not for stop and go traffic.:lol3
    Try it, but you may get some strange looks.
    #55
  16. tex99999

    tex99999 Sailor

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    I'm 5' 10". Inseam 31". I've laid the bike down 5 times in its first 1500km (1000mi). It's designed for this - only the passenger pegs and bar ends touch. Way to go BMW!
    Jon
    Ps I've only ridden 1800km - ever
    Pps Next ride is 1500km from South Baymouth, on to Owen Sound, on via Cochrane, on
    #56
  17. The Griz

    The Griz Long timer Supporter

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    Try riding any dirt bike known to man. They're a good deal taller than the F800GS. A couple of months ago I got a Suzuki DRZ400. After riding the DRZ for a while and then riding the F8, the F8 seems low compared to the DRZ. I've grown to appreciate how low the F8 really is compared to a true off road bike like the DRZ.
    #57
  18. Migs

    Migs Sometimes we cry with everything except tears.

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    Ok amigos:

    For what it's worth, this thread actually bore fruit!

    Today I bought a brand new white colored F800GS with the low seat, and guess what? I can actually reach the floor with both feet fairly well. (Either I grew in the last few days or that BMW showroom has magic floors.) It has the factory hand guards, metal motor protector, heated this and that, computer, ABS and alarm. The only thing I need to get are the crash guards and a GPS mount and I'm set!

    Thanks to all y'all for the encouragement.

    Migs
    #58
  19. EnderTheX

    EnderTheX Dirt Rider

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    Congrats!!!!!!!!!!! :freaky



    My two cents... get the SW-Motech guards (awesome and well tested... by me) and a Garmin 276C GPS (if you don't already have one). :lol3
    #59
  20. Migs

    Migs Sometimes we cry with everything except tears.

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    Will do! I have a stable of GPS's including one that is very similar to the 276C (which got stolen!). The guards look ideal!

    What a beautiful bike. I rode it to work today!

    Migs
    #60