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  #1  
Old 20 Jul 2012
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Why the beak?

This might seem a silly question, but I have searched the site and I don't think it's been asked before.

What is the purpose of the 'beak' on the newer BMWs? It started with (I think) the 1100GS and has now become a defining feature of the 'adventure' bike. Even the new Triumph 800 has one. As the bike already has a working front mudguard/fender, what function does the beak serve?

I think they are pretty ugly things, to be honest. It puts me off the Tiger, and that's a bike I could be interested in otherwise. And it means that if I ever buy a BMW, it will have to be an older model, pre-beak.

Aerodynamics? Keeping mud from the front wheel out of the rider's face? Opening tins of vegetables? Or just a styling exercise?

Anyone?
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  #2  
Old 20 Jul 2012
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Cosmetic.

I like the look, personally.
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  #3  
Old 20 Jul 2012
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Marketing attempt to make it look more like a trail bike raised mudguard.

It is an interesting subject as to what the marketing blokes latch on to. Look at all the plastic boxes that are now silver and square rather than black and curvy. I work in pumps and the marketing idiots hated a switch from hex head cover bolts to cap head because they said it looked less tough . The results of letting art students choose the paint aren't funny!

Andy
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  #4  
Old 20 Jul 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackDogZulu View Post
It started with (I think) the 1100GS
Nah, BMW nicked it from Suzuki...

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Old 20 Jul 2012
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Originally Posted by Threewheelbonnie View Post
Marketing attempt to make it look more like a trail bike raised mudguard.
That's exactly what I thought it might be. Thank you for confirming my suspicions. I must get some old oil containers and make one for the XT ... oh, hang on, it already has a trail bike raised mudguard ..

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Originally Posted by dash View Post
Nah, BMW nicked it from Suzuki...
Yup, I knew I had seen it somewhere before. They just had to copy the ugliest bike Suzuki ever made ...

Thanks to you both. I can sleep easy now.
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  #6  
Old 20 Jul 2012
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The beak serves the same purpose as the bolt on chrome bits on a Harley, nothing useful what so ever, although some might say that applies to the rest of the bike on a Harley.
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Old 20 Jul 2012
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Originally Posted by mark manley View Post
The beak serves the same purpose as the bolt on chrome bits on a Harley, nothing useful what so ever, although some might say that applies to the rest of the bike on a Harley.
Of course, there are some people on this HU site who have done long trips and RTW on a Harley, and you could share your thoughts there.

So the bikes are useful enough for travel, some might say.
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Old 20 Jul 2012
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I stand on it when camping, and tools/fastenings when working on the bike, other than that I am unsure of its function, the bike does look a bit odd without it though.
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Old 20 Jul 2012
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We should not forget that it's an essential part to hold the BLACK front mudguard extension which apart from the visual effect it is useful to invest 107 USD and appreciate proportionally the 2nd hand value of your regular 1200 GS. In the case of the Triple BLACK version, it also helps to match the color of the frame, the rims and the hole in your bank account.



Although I'm not a big fan, I never found the GS to be an ugly bike. It's different and I reckon BMW was able to create a style on its own and all starting with what would looks like ugly premises such as different sized front lights, massive size and others. And IMO it looks nicer with the with the peak and more with the black extension (much nicer than the horrible Suzuki DR!)... although maybe as redundant as a belt with braces.
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Old 21 Jul 2012
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Originally Posted by BlackDogZulu View Post
And it means that if I ever buy a BMW, it will have to be an older model, pre-beak.
Two screws and it comes off?!

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Old 21 Jul 2012
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Originally Posted by grizzly7 View Post
Two screws and it comes off?!

I bet the warranty implications involve a lot more screwing. Any bets that it a vital structural component



Andy
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  #12  
Old 21 Jul 2012
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I have a 2004 1200gs c/w a beak and I must admit having followed it for over 155,000 miles I have grown to love it although containers tend to slide off mine but thereagain it is too young to go into a bar. Just to put a bit of a damper on things, it could by virtue of its shape and position increase the air flow through the oil cooler matrix thereby making the oil cooled engine run more effectivly. Also, in my experience, thousands of bugs (various) would, if they could, testify to its ability to scoop. Ride safe.
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Old 21 Jul 2012
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Originally Posted by grizzly7 View Post
Two screws and it comes off?!

That's what tents and hotel rooms are for, surely?

Seriously, apart from the illogicality of buying a >10kUKP bike and immediately starting to dismantle it, it's not just the beak I don't like. The proportions of the 1200 seem all wrong - too bulky in the midriff and the back wheel's too small. It seems that the stylists rather then the engineers were in charge when it was designed.

Just personal opinion, of course, and I know people love them, but they are not for me. Whereas I think the older airheads look handsome.
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  #14  
Old 21 Jul 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caminando View Post
Of course, there are some people on this HU site who have done long trips and RTW on a Harley, and you could share your thoughts there.

So the bikes are useful enough for travel, some might say.
First two bikes we saw in our hotel car park in Vladivostok last year were Harleys ridden by two Finnish guys from Finland and the bikes were still shiny !

It doesn't end there though.... a couple of days later a dutch guy and his wife each riding Harleys turned up in the same car park having completed the same journey from Netherlands !

I'm not a Harley lover myself but then I've never ridden one but, having seen the state of some of the Trans Siberian Highway I have to say fair play to these guys.
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  #15  
Old 22 Jul 2012
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Why the beak ?
To be one of the crowd !
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