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  #61  
Old 25 Feb 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmotten View Post

Do you mean the socket with the 2 prongs on it?

Don’t think you can call the shim thing a problem. Just comes with the valve design. Most people from what I read don’t have to change them often.
Yes the Socket with 2 prongs for the Head Bearings.

Shims could be a problem if you dont take spares. I will check mine before I leave and take a few suitable sizes.

Will add a regulator to my list.
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  #62  
Old 25 Feb 2008
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You don't need it. Read at the bottom of here
It's only to use the correct torque but on every other bike you just use feel.

As for the valves. It's good to have a look to see what's in your bike even when you're not going on a new trip. Good check on torques and all that.

Personally I'm not going to take the voltage regulator/ rectifier as it's quite large. Instead I'll check with the dealers in the UK to see if it's a stocked item. They're not cheap either. And I don't think it a that regulare failure like the waterpump.
Dave Lambeth told me to take magneto coils. Expensive and large, but he said they have been known to fail. We put quite a bit of heat on it on both XT's and they were fine. But with the XT they're not readily available. Hence the check on the F. I'll have a few parts packaged at home ready to be send out. Haven't worked out a list for that yet though.
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  #63  
Old 25 Feb 2008
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You are correct, the tool for the steering head bearings is probably excessive but I may take one. I worked as an engineer for a company producing 'Tightening Systems' for the automotive industry and learnt good practice of ensuring all bolts are correctly torqued. I will take a small torque wrench on my trip.
What ever spares you take you wont need, something else will fail....
Why ? because thats the nature of adventure, to test you and help you grow. A great test is bike failure and the inherent problems and solutions needed to resolve it.

Back on topic.

Where are all the F650GS riders ? We would value your opinions....
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  #64  
Old 25 Feb 2008
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More input needed

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Originally Posted by DarrenM View Post

Where are all the F650GS riders ? We would value your opinions....

Exactly!

The recent information about prepping the F650 has been good, and is relevant enough to the original question - no other bike, or rider, sets off for a long trip without dealing with the known problems.

I am as bad as anyone for going but there have to be some more F650 riders out there right now who can tell us how their bike is performing.
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  #65  
Old 26 Feb 2008
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Originally Posted by Walkabout View Post
I am as bad as anyone for going but there have to be some more F650 riders out there right now who can tell us how their bike is performing.
opcorn: (crap, that doesn't work. Ah well, you're getting the message)

Meanwhile. Aren't torque wrenches really sensitive to abuse? Sitting in the pannier can't be good for it possibly giving false torques, etc. I'm still not sure about bringing one.
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  #66  
Old 26 Feb 2008
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I had the 1999 funduro f650 ran well. Liked lower octane more than high. I got any where from 35 MPG to 70 MPG. Burned exhaust gaskets more than I liked. Getting the air box off was less than fun. Last problem I had was an electrical box under the seat. Service did such a poor job I traded the bike in. Not a bad bike but for the money there are better bikes that will do the job I need done.

But if you want to know about the F650 go to The Chain Gang

The source of all things F650. ALL THINGS. Want to know how to field strip the motor some one there will know, have done it, and have notes. Want the specks on a 1996 piston they will have it. How much torque to put on the left top water pump bolt of a 2004 GS they go it. How a GS handiles in the snow or sand or 13,000 feet. known octane problems? What brakes on the bikes? Just ask them, use there search first its been asked and answers more than one probably.

Still think BMW needs to remake the R80GS loose all the silly stuff that sells R1200GS to people on the showroom. The F800 a nice bike will be near the price of a R1200gs when the USA get them. Just a strong framed no frills bike. And own RTW/Adventure bikes.
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  #67  
Old 28 Feb 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmotten View Post
Meanwhile. Aren't torque wrenches really sensitive to abuse? Sitting in the pannier can't be good for it possibly giving false torques, etc. I'm still not sure about bringing one.
Your right they dont like abuse. Going to do some research, It may be the case that mechanical ones suffer more from vibrations. Electric types using transducers should hold up better. Will pack it between my tent and sleeping bags.

Looks like the best way to find out how reliable the F650GS is will be to take one RTW.

If I take a.....
..Honda I will be expecting reliability, if it fails I will be sad
..BMW I expect it to fail frequently, I may be pleasantly surprised

Chain Gang and F650.co.uk dont give much detail about RTW problems. Travellers website give a better indication. One site I am following is this
The Statistics the stats are a great idea.
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  #68  
Old 28 Feb 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarrenM View Post
If I take a.....
..Honda I will be expecting reliability, if it fails I will be sad
..BMW I expect it to fail frequently, I may be pleasantly surprised

I guess you haven't had the pleasure of owning a well maintained BMW K75...those are pretty solid bikes especially for RTWing.
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  #69  
Old 28 Feb 2008
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If you need a detailed and years long documentation of a an F650 on the road you MUST read the very well done and entertaining Smelly Bike accounts. A true BMW devotee.....

Smellybiker's Wanderlust Worldmap • View forum - BMW F650GS Dakar

Last edited by mollydog; 22 Mar 2009 at 00:35.
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  #70  
Old 29 Feb 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walkabout View Post
I am as bad as anyone for going but there have to be some more F650 riders out there right now who can tell us how their bike is performing.
We´re put off by the title of the thread - the presumption being they are crap in the first place and we have to change other's (closed) minds.

Seems to me, all bikes are crap for anything more than 2 weeks away from home - just that their owners' don't know it.
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  #71  
Old 29 Feb 2008
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If the 650GS is crap then the owners has to be real heroes!
Loads of people drive them on hard trips all over the world and the strange thing is that they seem to like it. Weird people…


Sidenote:
If you check the latest e-zine you will find that the 650GS is the most common bike, airheads come as number two..
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  #72  
Old 29 Feb 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarrenM View Post
You are correct, the tool for the steering head bearings is probably excessive but I may take one. I worked as an engineer for a company producing 'Tightening Systems' for the automotive industry and learnt good practice of ensuring all bolts are correctly torqued. I will take a small torque wrench on my trip.
What ever spares you take you wont need, something else will fail....
Why ? because thats the nature of adventure, to test you and help you grow. A great test is bike failure and the inherent problems and solutions needed to resolve it.

Back on topic.

Where are all the F650GS riders ? We would value your opinions....

Assuming that something catastrophic doesn't happen (like you crash really hard and trash your carefully chosen pannier system two weeks into the four-year RTW) at some point after you take off, you realize you have way too much stuff - and start to appreciate what is really important. Also because you are plain tired of repacking useless crap.

I'll put down money that the steering head tools and torque wrench become ´the departed´at some point. Of course, if I put down too much money, you´ll prove me wrong.

One only needs to carry spare parts when one realizes the parts they are using are just about worn out in the first place. Why carry spares when you won't need them for another xx,000 kms? (like spare brake pads, when the ones you started with were new - or should have been). Its shortly before you get to xx that it makes sense to have them handy.
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  #73  
Old 29 Feb 2008
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F650GS and BMW gear owner opinion!

Hi Ted, hope all is fine for you! Where are you?

As the very unhappy owner of a F650, 2004 model, that just had to be towed away yesterday....

As you know I´ve had my share of bike problems since my trip started with ABS, seals, electrics, speedo, master cilynder ... you name it...

Now yesterday while I spent 4 hours waiting for a tow truck to pick me up, 60km from Bariloche I had lots of time to think!
Seriously considering another bike for my next trip (London - Sydney). I am sick and tired of snobby BWM attitude and utter comtempt for their customers and also of the bad low quality gear that started desintegrating within weeks of buying them (2 santiago suits and 1 pair of boots boots... all awful!) .
Not helped by really bad attitude of BMW dealers and the incompetence of their workshop (See my blog to find more: entry "the day BWM tried to kill me" gives you an idea!)

By now I tell you I HATE BMW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And... I did not have notorious problems with my rear schock or water pump because I replaced them all before starting my trip! (Recommend White power shocks, superb!)

However, the Rotax engine is very good. No complaint there. For the rest I agree with Ted, something like a DR650 would be maybe a better choice.
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  #74  
Old 29 Feb 2008
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Originally Posted by maria41 View Post
By now I tell you I HATE BMW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I’m getting a little fatigued of the BMW bashing, model bashing, etc.

Look, not EVERY F650 is crap NOR is the DR650 the greatest bike in the world. Both bikes have been produced for long periods of time and they’ve had a variety of upgrades that make them fairly different every five years or so.

If you pick an F650 from 2002-2007, it will be different than an F650 from 1998-2002, etc. Do your research and don’t trust the sales/marketing guys…its your ass that will be on the side of the road waiting for a two truck…IF you happen to be lucky enough to have one available in the area you’re riding in.

No bike is perfect, but based on the trip(terrain, duration, etc) you’re taking…get to know your bike beforehand and be prepared to deal with minor issues along the way...part of the adventure!

Now if your final drive goes…that’s another thing! BUT I agree…the current BMW stuff and dealers are crap
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  #75  
Old 29 Feb 2008
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Wink We persevere nevertheless

Quote:
Originally Posted by quastdog View Post
We´re put off by the title of the thread - the presumption being they are crap in the first place and we have to change other's (closed) minds.

Yes, got to agree that is how it struck me when I first read it and I was not greatly inclined to bother reading it, never mind putting finger to key.

But, I am glad that it is still active, because any casual reader would get the overall impression that the F650 does not work well, if at all, in South America but it is fine in the rest of the world - can this, in fact, be true?
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