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Old 5 Sep 2008
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F800GS - What Mods?

Ok, just taken the plunge and put a deposit on a new 800GS for my next trip, London to Cape Town, hopefully starting in late December this year. Having given up the delights of my 2002 KTM 640 Adventure for various reasons i am now in the position of having a new bike with not much info on it, with fuel range being a particular area of concern.

So, what mods would you guys and girls recommend for a currently standard bike???

Many thanks.

Ps and how do i change my user name on here too!!

Some day so soon....
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Old 5 Sep 2008
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I wouldn't do a thing except fit your luggage and GPS and get some miles in. Then you'll know the fuel range, how the tyres like different surfaces, what drops off and so on.

Good excuse for a nice little break too

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Old 5 Sep 2008
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I'd love it if you could come back soon with some direct comparisons between the KTM 640A and the F800GS! Would be very interesting to read.
http://bigben.to/ London to....? The big bike annual rally.
http://www.mongolbikers.com 125cc London -> Mongolia.
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Old 6 Sep 2008
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I am picking the bike up in a week or two Martin so will be able to give you a better comparison then, but for your info, i had a test ride many months ago and was seduced by the smoothness and refinement of the engine when compared to my KTM, it made my Adventure feel nearly agricultural...! Slightly harsh maybe as my Adventure was a 40'000 mile bike which has had a tough life, but hope you get the point.

The Bm's road manners and handling felt a bit more 'street bike' like, very good around town and it was thoroughly enjoyable test ride, seemed a great bike.

If the 690 Adventure was out, that would of been a better comparison and one i would definitely have made, but time was against me as i leave in three months.

Some day so soon....
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Old 6 Sep 2008
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I wouldn't worry about fuel range, the consumption is really good. Loaded with luggage and doing an average of 70mph (so doing 75-80 much of the time) on a motorway I did over 200 miles before stopping with a projected 8 miles range left. Normal roads are even better and it's easy to get ranges of over 250 miles.

Obvious mods are TKC80 tyres (ask your dealer to swap the tyres it comes with), hand guards, engine bars and maybe a better bash plate. The screen is low for European speeds, but probably fine for Africa.

On a slightly negative point, check out the threads about radiator top hose and chains on the UKGSer 650/800 forum.

Tim (F650GS twin and R1200GS Adventure)
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Old 6 Sep 2008
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Thanks for the info Tim, especially that link to the GS forum... will spend some time checking that out, should prove very useful. Many thanks.

Some day so soon....
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Old 22 Sep 2008
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The mods I have done...

Hey Billy,

Got your message.
I currently have 20000 kms on my 800gs, and most of them have been great.
Before leaving I got a fair few Touratech items.
The engine bars have proved excellent, especially after a nasty crash in Romania, although they are hell to get on.
The radiator is quite exposed so definitely get the extension bars.
The bar risers give a great riding position, whilst other mods like the collapsible brake and clutch pedals give peace of mind.
As to panniers, I got metal mules. They are more expensive than others, yet with a Scorpian exhaust a lot of weight is saved, and slims down the back end.
I have also had the ECU programmed to run on 91ron.
As to life on the road, it has performed really well, although that first gear a pain off-road. I have routed another clutch cable just in case.
Unfortunately it has had a couple of problems, which BMW have had to fix under warranty. Both the sump and cylinder head gaskets have leaked, and the hose on the water pump kept coming loose.
Give it good run in across the whole range before heading too far from Europe.
Problems aside, it has proved an excellent bike for the job in hand. It handles so well loaded with luggage, that you forget you are carrying anything at all.
The economy is great. Averaging 4l/100kms, at 100kms/hr on tarmac.
(sorry, but I think in Kms since I had my clocks changed). At 80kms/hr it returns 3l/100kms. That is giving me over 400kms a tank. Amazing.
Of course the real test will be when i hit Pakistan.
We'll see.

Good luck with yours.
I don't have enough posts on the HUBB to send messages, yet feel free to email me at,

All the best, Ian
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Old 22 Sep 2008
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Hey Ian, thanks for that great info and being my guinee pig!, that is very useful... hope things stay together for you for the rest of your journey and enjoy Pakistan and the bike. Best wishes Will

Some day so soon....
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Old 4 Nov 2008
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Some info here:

Wanna help me 'farkle' my F800GS? - ADVrider
Paul "Every county of England, every country of Europe and every (part of every inhabited) continent of the Earth" 83% done!
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Old 24 Nov 2008
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I did Mongolia trip this summer on F800 GS. Excelent bike, but some mods are must:

engine and radiator protection - i used TT crash bar with extension (was not better option that time) and small bash plate with oil filter extension. I also put some pipe protection on exhaust pipes, but not enough - speeding 80km/h through rocky desert was a heavy test See the pic

I also had Zega cases (35 and 41 l), hand guards, and handlebar risers.
Also remmaped sw for 91 RON.
In Mongolia there was only 76 and 80 RON gas, 4000 km without problems, mabye little lower torque when low rpm.

I definitely advice to use bigger windshield for long runs.

Mileage is excelent, 400 km is normal, in heavy terain lets say 280 km... that s enough. I had one can just for sure, but almost never used.

15000 km done, 4000 offroad. Bike problems:
1) top radiator hose
2) too soft rims (or too heavy loaded bike + speeding on rocky terrain)
3) oil leaks - gasket (fixed by bmw, now everything ok, hope it will never happen again)
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