2010 BMW R1200GS Adventure Tank Removal

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by aGremlin, Jun 12, 2012.

  1. aGremlin

    aGremlin Been here awhile

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    One of the other inmates was after the procedure for removing the fuel tank… so here it is. I have a 2010 R1200GSA, so the procedure might vary slightly for different years. I suppose I have to apologise for the dirty bike, but she ain’t a show pony! Too busy riding to give her a thorough clean.

    Remove the winglets, 2 screws on each. Remove the black shrouds, 3 screws on each.

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    Underneath are two bolts on each side holding the beak to the tank and frame, remove both (on both sides)

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    There is a plastic cover on the left side (as you sit on it), no bolts, it just comes off. Black knobs go through a rubber ring in a couple of places. Pull gently with increasing force and it comes off.

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    On the right side is a plastic piece with one bolt, remove that and remove both silver plates on either side of the tank. Forgot to take shots of this, but it’s 2-3 bolts for each, very straight forward. Pay attention to how the plates hook into the top piece with a tongue and groove. You’ll need to check this as you re-assemble. During re-assembly it’s important to lock these and the top piece of the tank together neatly to give a clean finish. I find some spare hands make this much easier.

    To remove the tank you don’t have to remove the beak, but it must be slid forward, clear of the tank surround. Remove the single bolt on each side holding the black beak cover on, which also loosens the beak itself. I’d also recommend unscrewing the indicators to give you some extra wiggle room for the beak. I simply unscrew and then I can move them around as required as they hang from the wire.

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    On the inside of the beak is a tricky black plastic piece that runs all the way around the inside of the cockpit. It clips into the beak with 3 hooks on each side, that decrease in length as you move forward. To remove hook your finger underneath from the rear and slowly lift up and forward and the hooks will release. Release both sides. This will now allow the beak to be pulled forward, giving you a gap between the beak and tank.

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    Squeeze your fingers into the tight space on the top of the tank, on both sides. The right side has one connection with a metal slide (fuel I believe). Push to the other side and pull the plug up, it will come off. The left side has another of the same and two electrical connectors. Pull them gently upward, making sure you have the whole plug, otherwise only some will come away, leaving some in the socket.

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    The airbox intake tube must be removed before tank removal. There are 2 clips clamping the tube to the airbox. They will be tough to remove. Reach around the front and push the clip in the airbox direction and then pull the whole clip away from the bike. I find a small screwdriver or the like handy to give the right leverage. The tube is also held on with a plastic knob that will pull away. Handle gently as the knob can break off, which will allow the tube to flop around when riding. Note above the tube the 5 or 5.5mm hex head bolt. There is one each side that must be removed, they hold the tank on.

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    There are two tubes that have to be disconnected, one each side, but both have quick disconnect sections in them. The left one is obvious running down the tank and disconnects just below the tank. The right one is underneath the airbox intake tube (which you’ve already removed, so it’s easy to see).

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    Take the opportunity to clean your air filter if you’ve got a lifetime one… I should have cleaned mine sooner, as I gained 0.5L/100km… it was half clogged with the assortment of wildlife and dirt I didn’t know I was collecting!

    You are now ready to remove the fuel tank. I hope you didn’t just fill it, as it makes one hell of a difference in handling it. The tank is now resting on 2 big bolts either side with moulded hooks in the tank. They don’t have to be loosened or anything. The tank has to be lifted back and up and it will clear the bike…

    Job done! Reverse the above process when putting everything back and I hope you aren’t short of bolts or have any left over!! Take care when sliding the tank over the bike that you don’t trap any of the cables or wires, especially on the left side… make sure all the connectors are there. It may take a couple of goes to slide the tank on nicely. I find two people make the job much easier.

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    #1
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  2. wb5plj

    wb5plj Been here awhile

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    Very nice. thanks for posting. I am about to remove my tank from my 2012 to try and find a place to rout some wires (acc sockets and lights) so it is nice to see it lined out. incidentally I noticed your clearwater lights being held on by on side bolt (turned on there side so to speak) have you had any problem with them coming loose like that?

    thanks
    #2
  3. JM

    JM Been here awhile

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    I've got the tank off my '13 GSA as I type. Be advised there are a few more lines to the charcoal canister that need to be removed that aren't shown in the pictorial.

    I ran the wires for two sets of lights and two accessory ports from the front of the bike down the right side. The left side is already pretty full of wires from the factory.
    #3
  4. aGremlin

    aGremlin Been here awhile

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    The clearwater lights are mounted in the same position usually occupied by the GSA fog lamps. Never had any problems with their position, and bike has been dropped many times. Once or twice after the drop they've swung back a bit, and you pull them forward again.

    Re charcoal canister, I think some of the USA guys have them, not applicable to us, bike never had it, hence why you don't see it.
    #4
  5. JM

    JM Been here awhile

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    Lucky Bastards. I'm going to have to wait a while on this new bike before I give it a canisterectomy. I've got a very good feeling the canister will expire about the same time my warranty does. :D
    #5
  6. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    Nice job!

    The only suggestions, or question, why remove the winglets?
    #6
  7. JM

    JM Been here awhile

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    The bolts that hold the winglets on also secure the beak to the frame. You need to remove those bolts to slide the beak forward. Or as I did to remove it completely to make it easier to cut the holes in the beak for accessory ports.

    Word of advise..... If you are going to mount accessory ports in the beak mark the holes on the underside of the beak using the holes in the beak support structure as a template before removing the beak. There are holes in the metal support structure under the beak on each side specifically there for mounting accessory ports.

    The shop tech I talked to about tips on adding the accessory ports said to get a hot sharp piece of metal like a scribe or something and melt your way through the beak material in the center of the hole from underneath to mark your spot. Then cut the circle in the beak using the hole as the center point. I should have listened to him. But it's good to be lucky like I was when I cut the holes in the beak on my bike.
    #7
  8. wb5plj

    wb5plj Been here awhile

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    That's interesting. the dealer near me told me that they where marked by the factory so just take it off and use as a template. wrong! you are correct in that they are not marked. I put the beak and related parts back on to get the alignment right then as you suggested reached under and I just used a black felt tip marker.

    I have two sockets, one on each side. now I have a switch to mount (from clearwater, no original lights to replace, just a GS) and now need to find a place for it. I am thinking on mounting it into the black plastic skirt (what else do you call it) in the under the gauge cluster. that thing you pop off the beak. I think their is just enough space to sneak it in, I didn't know if anyone had tried this or not.
    #8
  9. JM

    JM Been here awhile

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    That location would probably work. It's a bit of a reach if you have to dim your lights. Depending on what model and year you are talking about I've seen pictures on the Max BMW fiche that show the stock ADV switch. It looks like it would be possible to add this switch to the left control module. Of course it would depend on the model and year compatibility. Not cheap at 143.65 but it would be stock looking and clean.

    http://www.maxbmwmotorcycles.com/fiche/PartsFiche.aspx

    I saw a switch install on a fellow inmates bike that looked pretty slick. He took one of the smaller piaa switches and Velcroed it to the inside of the left hand protector.

    I've also seen small L brackets that attach to the left mirror bolt that hold the small PIAA switch.
    #9
  10. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    OK, I see, in your case, removing the beak, that is true. To remove just the tank you do not need to remove the winglets.

    Sorry for the confusion.
    #10
  11. JM

    JM Been here awhile

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    I am one with my confusion.

    The OP who did the photo step by step said the tank came off easier if you slid the beak forward. Slide it forward or take it off you would have to remove the winglets. I'm not sure if messin with the beak is really necessary but it sure was nice to have out of the way when I hung all the wires up front.
    #11
  12. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    It is not necessary at all. I have never removed a beak, or slid it forward (which is the same as removing it for all intents and purposes) to remove a GSA tank, and I have removed and installed well over 100 of them. I do not see how it would help at all, for that matter! :dunno
    #12
  13. aGremlin

    aGremlin Been here awhile

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    I had a switch on a Touratech dash surround, but found it a pain to have the switch all the way over there, behind the bars etc. As said, you can have a little L bracket to mount on the left mirror stalk, and stick the switch to it. I had some Denalis like that, but ended up annoyed at the switch, as it was hard to stab if there was suddenly an oncoming car at night. I cleaned up my lights a lot by relaying some via high beam, and installing a BMW switch block with two switches. Bloody expensive, but looks a lot nicer and cleaner.

    I ain't gonna argue with the great JVB, but it made my life easier getting it out of the way. Since it's a stepped walkthrough, with lots of pretty (but dirty) pictures, I doubt experienced people would be giving it a second glance. More intended for those that have never done it before. As always, the first time is the longest and hardest, then it gets easier from there.
    #13
  14. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    I agree, no sense in arguing and ruining a really useful and well done thread!:freaky
    #14
  15. vikingolly

    vikingolly Iron Butt Rider

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    I have all the panels off my water cooled GSA, (having previously removed the tank from my 2007 GSA) I thought this would be easy. But its different. CAn someone who knows this well, please give me the different instructions for the newer bike?
    #15
  16. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    There is a recent thread that I posted photos to on it here on G-spot.

    Here you go: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1035465&highlight=bodywork
    #16
  17. DRONE

    DRONE Dog Chauffeur

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    Thanks for doing this DIY, Gremlin. Pics are great. I recently got my 1st 1200 (a 2008 GSA) and needed to remove the tank to get at the ABS modulator. I was dreading the job! But your post made it like, "Oh! That's not so bad!"

    I remember the first time I removed the tank on my 1150GSA it took me like an hour. Now I can do it in 4 minutes. Putting it back takes longer though--at least 6 minutes! I'm hoping that my new ride won't need tank removal often enough for me to become that good at it!
    #17
  18. R1200GSA

    R1200GSA Been here awhile

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    Ok, what is the trick to getting the side bolts to line back up again, taking them out was easy enough to slide the tank back but now, I am ready to throw away all my tools and quit!!!
    #18
  19. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    If the tank is off for a couple of days, especially with more than half a tank of gas in it, reinstallation can be a bitch! The tank, sitting on the mounts on the ground, spreads and makes remounting it very hard. You will have no choice but to fight it on and use, gently, prybars.
    #19
  20. R1200GSA

    R1200GSA Been here awhile

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    I didn't take the tank off the bike, I only slid it back a few inches to permit me to get to the top shock bolt. Job done a little while later, went to put the tank back and I'll be damned if I can figure out how to get it back lined up again.
    #20