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  #1  
Old 7 Aug 2010
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Bmw1200gsa 2010

Anyone had any handling issues with the new GSA when its fully loaded at slow speed two up. Wound the preload right up when coming to a stop or pulling away its like riding on marbles, the front just rises and goes very light. Thinking about changing the rear shock or spring, but having parted with a lot of cash its a bit of a bummer.
Any thoughts,
ps its not the tyres or head bearings.
Steve
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  #2  
Old 8 Aug 2010
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Ive got 09 gsa, no such problems i just completed trip to the balkans 2 up fully loaded it was fine,your problems dont seem right to me, i would take it back to the dealer its under warranty so get them to check it out, also try uk gs forum there are plenty of gsa owners on the site that may be able to help.
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  #3  
Old 8 Aug 2010
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Nearly all my GS riding buddies have gone with Ohlins shocks front and rear. One of our guys is Editor of "On The Level" (BMW club) and claims the stock shocks are "junk".

His '09 GS has Ohlins front and rear. He recently did the '10 press intro, liked the bike but would still put on the Ohlins. BMW should just include the Ohlins stock. The stock items are WP (White Power). Not sure why BMW don't pay WP enough to make a first class shock. They have the ability. Our local dealer had a stack of 25 sets of stock BMW WP shocks laying around. Most like brand new. Most all went with Ohlins. So add another $3000 to your tab I guess?

I've only ridden the R12GS solo. Off rode at slow speeds its a bit tricky. But just about any big, tall, heavy bike where you can't see the front tire is a handful at slow speeds (for me) ... including the new Duc 1200 Multistrada S, which I just got off of. On a rough road (paved) the GS is the better bike. Neither are suitable for what we call "off road". Dirt road? Fine. Dirt bike? uh, no thanks.

BMW's need to be learned, IMO. Always takes me a while to "Re-Set" my brain to understand how the BMW works ... weight, balance, handling, ergos, power. All weird. Its weird but does work once you get it.

Last edited by Mickey D; 9 Aug 2010 at 06:52.
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  #4  
Old 8 Aug 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thefastone View Post
...
Wound the preload right up when coming to a stop or pulling away its like riding on marbles, the front just rises and goes very light.
...
Being this new, i.e. 2010. I'd say you can pretty much rule out shocks, unless there are visible signs of damage (oil leak etc.)

Considering the front "rises up" and "goes very light", what about weight distribution?

I just returned from a 6,000 mile Alaska/Canada trip two-up with luggage on a '07 GSA. Handled nicely, even on gravel. I'm no off road expert by any stretch...
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  #5  
Old 9 Aug 2010
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I just noticed Thomas' quote "I cranked the Pre-Load right up"
Hey, maybe that's the problem? Too much preload is as bad or worse than not enough. Cranking it "right up" could be making is very harsh which could do some weird things to handling. Also, front to rear balance is very important.

Good luck sorting it out. Stock suspension may not be great but certainly should be good enough, and if set right, fine two up and loaded. I'd go back to the drawing board on your set up. Keep notes of changes, find a test route to ride over and over until you make progress.
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  #6  
Old 13 Aug 2010
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GSA Suspension

Thanks for all the replys, had the bike back at the dealers whom (wait for it) carnt find anything wrong. The bike has only 3 settings, so not a lot to play with. It seams to be like my drag bike that squats under power the front goes light then its ok. But in stop start traffic its a real pain.
Steve
Thefastone
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  #7  
Old 26 Aug 2010
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I've had the exact same problem with my 2009 GSA! Thank god I'm not the only one, I almost dropped the bike right in front of Chizz's house (HUBB member) and on a few other occasions. Two up, fully loaded, Metzeler Tourance Exp tyres and terrible handling at low speeds (walking pace). I have never experienced anything like that before, not even on an equally loaded (aka overloaded) Tenere with 20 year old springs and shock. I think "like on marbles" actually describes it best - it's terrible.

Do you have the ESA system? I've had mine set to two people soft, unfortunately BMW only allows you to select one person, one person + luggage and two people, then soft, normal, and hard. What tyres do you have on yours?
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Old 26 Aug 2010
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Measure your sag... Static sag and rider sag with the bike loaded up.

Find your book and find out the total travel on the rear shock...

The shock should be compressed about 5-10% of its total travel just sitting on its wheels without your arse on it and you should only be using about 25-30% of your total travel when you are sitting on the bike, loaded up...

If its much more than this then you need to adjust either pre-load or maybe if you're overloading the bike , you need a stronger spring.

You always see overloaded overland bikes dragging their arse. Totally overloaded with really badly adjusted suspension. These are the people struggling to corner, falling over on trails and wondering why their front wheels feel disconnected to the road....
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Old 26 Aug 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mj View Post
I've had the exact same problem with my 2009 GSA! Thank god I'm not the only one, I almost dropped the bike right in front of Chizz's house (HUBB member) and on a few other occasions. Two up, fully loaded, Metzeler Tourance Exp tyres and terrible handling at low speeds (walking pace). I have never experienced anything like that before, not even on an equally loaded (aka overloaded) Tenere with 20 year old springs and shock. I think "like on marbles" actually describes it best - it's terrible.

Do you have the ESA system? I've had mine set to two people soft, unfortunately BMW only allows you to select one person, one person + luggage and two people, then soft, normal, and hard. What tyres do you have on yours?
WTF? You just wrote a gleaming review of your GS on another thread .... so what's up with this? If I didn't know better I'd guess these bikes have major chassis problems. But my guess is that the prob is owner related. I didn't realize your bikes had the ESA options. I've no idea how it works but if you both are having the "like on marbles" issues, something is clearly F'd up .... and does not sound real safe.

My BMW buddy with the '09 has Ohlins front and rear on his bike. But he gets it free.
Loves the bike and goes good on it ... but gets really pissy when I pass him on my 37 HP DR650 on a nasty, wet road.

Seriously, this is pretty weird. I would definitely get in touch with someone
fairly high up at BMW and get this sorted out. Good luck.
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  #10  
Old 26 Aug 2010
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This has nothing to do with the bike itself. My guess is that this is somehow related to the bike being overloaded. Might also be caused by the tyres. It doesn't happen at all when we're going two up with no panniers or solo with luggage. Thus, it's not really an issue with the bike but rather the bike telling me to go easier on it next time. In all fairness there's not a singgle bike out there whose stock suspension is made for carrying two people plus luggage. Some aren't even strong enough for just two people (Suzuki Freewind for example) thus I fail to see how this is related to the opinion stated in the other thread that you're referring to. I sense a lot of hatred towards BMW coming from your direction...
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Old 27 Aug 2010
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Originally Posted by *Touring Ted* View Post
Measure your sag... Static sag and rider sag with the bike loaded up.
Exactly!

Even if ESA is great it can't make the spring stiffer. I would guess that the routine is described in your manual.
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  #12  
Old 27 Aug 2010
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This has nothing to do with the bike itself. I fail to see how this is related to the opinion stated in the other thread that you're referring to. I sense a lot of hatred towards BMW coming from your direction...
"Nothing to do with the bike" ??
Now that is Funny!
You mean the OPINION that YOU Stated in your long rant about the joys of your GS? Maybe you should re-read what you wrote on the other thread and try to figure this out. Or I could quote it back here for you ... and everyone to read? BTW, its totally related. And its everything to do with the bike.

I sense a lot of paranoia and wild imaginings from your direction. No one is attacking your beloved BMW ... just trying to offer a few tips to solve a problem your dealer should have solved before you got the bike.

Remind me never, ever to try to help you with ... anything ... ever.
And you do need help, Marble man.
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  #13  
Old 27 Aug 2010
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And you do need help, Marble man.

Eehhhhhh.....
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Old 27 Aug 2010
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I sense a lot of paranoia and wild imaginings from your direction. No one is attacking your beloved BMW ... just trying to offer a few tips to solve a problem your dealer should have solved before you got the bike.
Attack all you want I couldn't care less. Seriously, go nuts. Frankly, I've never owned a bike that I didn't like yet - they were all great in their own specific way. And as long as there are at least two motorcycle brands available there's going to be trench warfare between fans of brand a) and fans of brand b)
And I'm certainly not going to badmouth the entire bike because of a minor glitch that is solvable. This is not going to be one of those "I have a minor problem... OMG THIS IS ALL CRAP <insert_brand_here> IS ALL CRAP I HATE IT DIE DIE DIE!" situations that I have experienced too often already. The rust might be the deal breaker in my case. But like they say - nobody's perfect. How about we agree that we will probably never get along in terms of what bike to use for long distance travel but that it doesn't really matter in the end as long as you get your butt on that bike and go? Name:  beerchug.gif
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And while I appreciate the help I am pretty sure it has nothing to do with the bike per se but with either a) the suspension, b) the tires, or c) both. Just like on any other bike that suspension is not strong enough to carry two passengers plus full luggage. That bike was heavily overloaded and it doesn't behave that way at all when it's not overloaded. I've noticed similar albeit not that bad, behavior on a Suzuki Freewind two-up. That suspension is barely strong enough to carry a grown man plus luggage...
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  #15  
Old 12 Mar 2011
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handling

I had the same problem whith my gsa. Simply too much weight at the back. I had to sort it out by relocating (change te place of the luggage) the luggage. Then it was better, but it wasn't over. So I think the only thing you can do is to order a new shockabsorber with a stiffer spring.
I was also in the Balcan and had a breakdown due to the soft springs.
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