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Which Bike? Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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  #46  
Old 29 Oct 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
I did ride a 900cc Kawa from the 70's however that had F.I.!! Very early, primitive version of course but it ran well!

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Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Kawasaki had F.I. in the early 70's and I believe other manufacturers tried before that. BMW had the first "modern" F.I. system. I rode the first year K100RS with F.I.
Sorry to be a Peed Ant but I just want to clear up a couple of points here.

1. Kawasaki didn't have FI on the early 70s Z1 900, it did feature on the watercooled GPZ900 though (from 1983)
2. The first Kawaski with FI was the Z1000J from 1979 - a development of the original Z1. This was followed by the GPZ1100 in 1980 - a further development of the Z1. I owned a GPZ11 and currently own an FI Z1300 6 cylinder (which is incidentally basically a Z1 900, albeit watercooled and with 2 additional cylinders grafted on) .
3. The FI on the Kawasakis was the first "modern" F.I., not BMW. i.e. it was electronic digital injection not mechanical injection as used by FI cars up until the late 70s.

Garry from Oz.
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  #47  
Old 29 Oct 2008
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Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Excuse me? More like Japanese bikes? I don't know of any Japanese bikes that have repeated failures BMW's have. Patrick
Hehe, I was not talking about quality this time. A lot of the newer bike is fitted with “normal” swing-arm, chaindrive, not K or R engines, and standard forks ++. Some of them even have only one button for the indicators.

Edit:
Sorry about the FI. BMW have only used it since 1983..
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  #48  
Old 29 Oct 2008
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Originally Posted by tmotten View Post
That’s amazing. I hope I’ll get that sort of reliability. Have you got a photobucket page with the photo’s of the trips at all? Had to Google HPN, but that is one of the bikes that has always inspired me for adventure RTW motorbiking, even before I knew what it was.
On most of the trips the bike was a standard R80GS Basic.
I didn’t convert it to a HPN before the mileage was 180kkm. The bike has done multiple bigger trips where the biggest is a double Trans Africa trip. This trip was a bit more then 50kkm and lasted a year, when the trip started the bike had 88 kkm on the clock. The engine was in original state (except for a clutch change, which wasn’t necessary).

The plan was to buy a new bike, but I couldn’t find anything I liked so I started to learn more about the HPN-bikes. It was a nice experience to deal with the company that has build most of BMWs Paris Dakar bikes and for me the result is stunning. All technical decisions were up to me, they gave loads of good advices and we were both proud of the result.
This conversion is not necessary to use the bikes for serious traveling, but for me it makes it more fun and I can push the limits quite a step further.

I haven’t made any kind of online-album. Maybe later… There will be a story about the rebuild in a Scandinavian magazine so I try to avoid posting new pictures before this is published.
Some old one:


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  #49  
Old 29 Oct 2008
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I think it was Pat who asked earlier the bikes I have now:
2003 Triumph Thunderbird Sport
2002 Suzuki DRZ400s
2005 Suzuki DRZ400e
1996 Kawasaki KLR250
1987 Honda Transalp XL600v with about 120k miles

Ride safely
Chris
I did have a CX 500... The right hand conrod snapped at 70 mph on the outside lane of a motorway at rush hour. Scarely as hell. Big bang, locked back wheel, pulled clutch and cut across 3 lanes of traffic

Last edited by chris; 11 Nov 2008 at 13:56.
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  #50  
Old 29 Oct 2008
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Thanks Garry,
Well at least I got close with the right decade!

Last edited by mollydog; 26 Mar 2009 at 17:22.
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  #51  
Old 29 Oct 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Can you tell us of any early F.I. bikes from 40's or 50's ? My memory is dim, but I recall something about this. I was thinking an early two stroke that had
F.I. .... Brit bike? Monocoque frame, liquid cooled?
My 84 CX650 turbo had digital F.I. and it worked faultlessly for the time I had the bike. I think the earlier 500 turbo had F.I. as well so that would push it back a few years to 81 or 82.

I seem to remember that Yamaha were supposed to have F.I. on the roadgoing square four 2T that they prototyped in 72 (?) but nothing came of it.

I did have a Wal Philips "fuel injector" on a Lambretta scooter back in the late 60's. Words fail me when I remember it but a few such as "health and safety legislation" spring to mind when I think about it. Awful thing.
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  #52  
Old 30 Oct 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Can you tell us of any early F.I. bikes from 40's or 50's ? My memory is dim, but I recall something about this. I was thinking an early two stroke that had
F.I. .... Brit bike? Monocoque frame, liquid cooled?

Cheers,

Patrick
Hi Patrick, I think you've probably got the Scott Flying Squirrel in mind, which subsequently was resurrected in the 70s by George Silk. Two cylinder two stroke and liquid cooled, unfortunately not FI though.

Garry from Oz.
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  #53  
Old 2 Nov 2008
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It seems this issue on early F650GS & Dakar machines was known about long ago

Written for BMWCCA Magazine and published in BMWRA "On the Level" magazine in 2004

ALUMINUM FAILURE

I recently experienced a component failure. Although it is not with a BMW sedan, but with a motorcycle, I thought it might be of interest to BMWCCA members as more and more BMWs use alloys, and the failure of my GS650 motorcycle fork axle flange was likely caused by a poor alloy casting.
I was travelling east on a straight 30-mph road at normal speed when the bike suddenly fell over, taking the rider down, too. Thankfully, there were witnesses, but none so close that they would run over me. I am thankful that the failure didn't occur at 70 mph. I had just crossed over railroad tracks when I hit the ground; I believe the tracks were the final jolt that caused the weakening axle flange to fail. The bike was a 2001 GS650 with about 1,400 miles on it, and it is the bike they advertise as their Dakar endurance bike. You can see that the flange pulled away from fork, taking a piece of the alloy. As an engineer, I find this type of failure discomforting because it happens so quickly and without any warning. After the accident, I checked both the floor in my shop and the spot outside my office where I parked the bike, expecting to see shock oil drips, but there were none. The only clue I had before the accident was that the front brake lever was "stiffer."
I've been driving BMWs exclusively since I was seventeen, from my first 1602 to the current 530i, and this GS650 was my first BMW Motorrad-my forty-something birthday gift. Whether you are an owner of a 650GS, or driving modern alloy equipped cars, I would advise that you do a quick check of the vehicle before every drive, as this failure was unannounced. Be sensitive to new shudders, sways, or other unfamiliar vehicle actions, as it might save your life.
I'm also quite disappointed with BMW's response. The dealer said that it was impossible for this part to fail, and that I must have been doing something unusual.
BMW Motorrad hasn't responded since they got full pictures of the failure several months ago. I think they want to close their eyes and pretend it isn't a normal component failure, hoping that I was doing something strange with the bike like skydiving or some such. My friends have all grown tired over the years of hearing me sing BMW's praises. I've gotten a real earful this year as they have chided me about how the GS650 let me down. And now, with BMW not even trying to make right this failure, I'm having a tough time defending BMW.

So, be careful, be wise, and be aware of changed vehicle characteristics. I know I will.

Jim Tussey
Caro, Michigan
Attached Thumbnails
Has anybody ever seen a failure like this on an early F650GS or Dakar?-gs-fork-2004a.jpg  

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  #54  
Old 2 Nov 2008
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BMW's handeling of this issues is shocking to say the least, and there should be some sort of customer backlash from this so they start respecting the word of their customers better. Being on my first BMW I can't say I'm impressed with the after sales service, but my dealer is mostly a Harley dealer.
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  #55  
Old 2 Nov 2008
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If you've followed statements and interviews in the last year or so from BMW's CEO, you'll find his admission publicly that he is aware BMW needs to be doing better. His statements appeared in a few mags I've read, I think Alan Cathcart interviewed him at some point this year. Cycle News had a piece and others I'm sure.

Last edited by mollydog; 21 Mar 2009 at 23:11.
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  #56  
Old 2 Nov 2008
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Right on

Hi Patrick, very good write up. Tongue in cheek, I'd have to say Guzzi are probably safe, as no-one makes bikes like Guzzi does! Seriously though, I have the feeling that if the European niche market bike makers can make correct decisions, they are better placed than the Japanese four against Chinese competition. I am assuming the Chinese will be the "New Japanese". But for me they're an unknown, maybe they'll be innovative and create totally new ideas. Exciting times if you're not the CEO of one of the present bike makers. From what I've read though, maybe BMW's biggest threat comes from very close indeed! BMW are made in southern Germany and they can probably almost hear KTM warming up their trail bikes in the mornings in Austria. I read that KTM have the target of being biggest European bike maker in a few years. Any celebs out there want to do a fun, free RTW trip?
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  #57  
Old 2 Nov 2008
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Industry rant

Selling "Chinese" will take a while yet. Very dangerous for BMW to make the move to China

Last edited by mollydog; 21 Mar 2009 at 23:12.
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  #58  
Old 5 Nov 2008
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I had an F650GS, I did 23,000 miles around south america with it.

I broke down everywhere. In the 4 months following my return to the UK it went to 5 workshops for many repairs, never ending trouble. In the end I took it to BMw where I was told they had to rewire the bike, change the wiring harness an control box...at a cost of 1700 pounds. I told them to &£$(*$£($ and got someone to fix the electrics so that I could sell this bloody bike.

It is gone now, I sold it to polish guys who will resale in Poland. Maybe in parts. I hope so! At least I won't have an angry owner screaming at me that I sold them a piece of sh*te!

Why did I get the BWM to start with? I believed the marketing lies that it was the most reliable bike. I believed it could stand the heat of off-road.... it was convenient, low enough for me to ride without complicated adjustements and lowering kits....
Well I know better now! But the worse thing of all had been dealing with the abysmal attitude of BMW! Money grabbing and utterly incompetents &(£"&%"%(&!!!!!!!!!!!

Well, I will be off on another trip in a couple of years time, and I can tell you it won't be on a bmw or with bmw equipment (don't get me started on that either!)!
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  #59  
Old 8 Nov 2008
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Two more potential failures posted on UK F650 forum well before all the current failures came to light

BMW F650 (UK and Ireland) :: View topic - Any known fork recalls on F650 GS's ??

00F650GS, 12k miles, no accident we know of thankfully

Title "Any known fork recalls on F650 GS's ??"

snip "it has a number of cracks both radial to the axle hole and radial fron the torx clamp bolt" snip

The rider posted the above on 8/3/07 & stopped posting 4/4/07

Second UK Failure

BMW F650 (UK and Ireland) :: View topic - Dakar down and out

02F650GS Dakar, 30k miles

snip
"Couple of months ago I managed to park my Dakar up and between two trees with snapped forks"

"a couple of weeks before I'd asked the salesman about it's trade-in value and was quoted just £1500 for an 02 plate Dakar with just a bit over 30,000 on the clock"

"I had little hope of the insurance paying out enough to get another bike but surprise, surprise the insurance chap commented that as it was as nice a bike for 5 years old as he had seen (don't know why I had stopped washing it much years before) and that he would pay-out the maximum insured value of £3000"
snip

Any guesses on the insurance Co ?...You got it...BMW !!!!

At least they paid out the full value of the policy rather than the market value as per the policy.

Confirmed "bottom Stanchion was snapped just above the axle"
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  #60  
Old 8 Nov 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
If you've followed statements and interviews in the last year or so from BMW's CEO, you'll find his admission publicly that he is aware BMW needs to be doing better. His statements appeared in a few mags I've read, I think Alan Cathcart interviewed him at some point this year. Cycle News had a piece and others I'm sure.

I don't have the exact quote, but to paraphrase, he said they've had some assembly problems lately and some parts suppliers have delivered sub standard items. Also talked about not being able to keep up with orders in Berlin and rushing as a result, which has led to problems in assembly. There was also a reference somewhere that BMW need to start owning up to problems, real or imagined and acknowledge customer's concerns and pay more attention to dealers.

Also, head designer David Robb has made statements admitting the need for better follow up on problem issues. My feeling is that if the CEO and head designer have had to eat crow publicly, then a few heads have rolled as a result. Can this minor shake up make a difference? I seriously doubt it. The Germans can be arrogant know it all's sometimes. But one can hope!

BMW need to pull it together .... and soon. With a huge down market coming, BMW has chosen the perfect time to transition to Chinese operations. Problem is, the Japanese have been there 10 years already and no doubt have all the best suppliers and talent working for them.

But BMW are very well set for a long recession and down motorcycle market. Because of the car division BMW are secure for now. But the internet is killing them lately. ADVrider is a perfect example. ADV is BIG and it's international. Like a "canary in the coal mine" in some ways. Many have left BMW for KTM and Suzuki. You can read about these defections there everyday. Even the hardcore Beemerphiles are shaken at this point, or so it appears to me.

Small companies like KTM, Buell, Husaberg (KTM), Triumph, Ducati, MV, Aprilia, Beta, Moto Guzzi, and several other smaller, less financially secure companies, will be under pressure. Some may fold. For sure we may see some interesting mergers, buy outs and bankruptcy actions. These antics are common among the Italians all the time, but now things will get serious!

It's hard to know with the Japanese but the big four are probably going to be OK, but they will really take some big losses. But they are ready. BMW are less ready it seems but have huge resources.

Among the big four Kawasaki are the strongest and will weather the recession best, then Honda, then Suzuki, then Yamaha.

Patrick
Kawasaki strongest??? I think Honda is by far the stronger manufacturer, and would out last anyone. Think of anything with an engine, and you will find one made by Honda. No way Kwak would outlast them.
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LinkBack to this Thread: http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/which-bike/has-anybody-ever-seen-failure-38514
Posted By For Type Date
The Chain Gang • View topic - Catastrophic F650GS Fork Failure This thread Refback 4 Feb 2009 16:06
Pohjolan Kurapyöräilijät • katso viestiketjua - HUOM! Alkumallien BMW F650GS / Dakar omistajat This thread Refback 1 Jan 2009 10:27
Interesting BMW fact I heard - PNW Riders This thread Refback 1 Jan 2009 03:57
Pohjolan Kurapyöräilijät • katso viestiketjua - HUOM! Alkumallien BMW F650GS / Dakar omistajat This thread Refback 11 Dec 2008 06:50
f650gs Any good? - BMRider Forums This thread Refback 25 Nov 2008 18:28
BMW F650 (UK and Ireland) :: View topic - Fork Failuar This thread Refback 24 Nov 2008 13:51
BMW F650 (UK and Ireland) :: View topic - Fork Failuar This thread Refback 24 Nov 2008 13:05
Has anybody ever seen a failure like this on an early F650GS or Dakar? from Horizons Unlimited - Traveler's Blog | Motorcycle Stories and Community | FAST3R This thread Refback 12 Nov 2008 04:55
.ORG! - Moottoripyora.org - paikka, jossa motoristit kokoontuvat This thread Refback 5 Nov 2008 13:28
BMW F650 (UK and Ireland) :: View topic - Fork Failuar This thread Refback 4 Nov 2008 13:30

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