Think your way through the worst case scenario and see how badly it pisses you off.
Could go like this
1) Be one othe alleged 4% that have an FD failure on Sat in Canada, a remote town, or just leaving for a planned vacation
2) Realize pretty much every BMW place is closed Sun and Mon so you lose 3 days before you can even begin to address it. (Note- there are a few rare exceptions and maybe you'll get lucky with the Anon. Book)
3) Take another week minimum to get parts and rebuild or maybe 3 weeks if you need a whole new FD and there are none in the US because others already needed the inventory.
4) Eventually get it back running in a week to a month but only after your planned trip or vacation is messed up, perhaps at significant extra expense.
I doubt there is an equivalent issue with a Harley- hard to imagine anything on one of those that can't be found or done fairly quickly. But then, do you really want to ride an overweight, ill handling thing in twisties anyway??
i don't let the worst case scenario bother me but then, I'm retired with plenty of time to do as I choose and a passable wrench when I need or choose to be. Doing all my routine work keeps me current on bike systems and construction and I carry necessary tools and info while touring plus a few critical spares (but NOT an FD! Way too heavy). I also don't leave for a trip without a careful examination of the bike to know eveything is OK at departure. And the bikes see routine use so there is plenty of other chances to spot and rectify porblems "at home". The only roadside fix needed on mine or the SOs BMWs in the past couple years has been an fpc on my RT, a very simple job if you know what to do- took longer to clean the corroded connections at the pump than to do the rest of the job..
Last edited by racer7; 09-27-2012 at 01:20 AM.
The R bikes (boxer engine) are very easy to work on, even compared to anything HD makes. Many of us do most of our own work, and the availability of a tool called the GS-911 lets us play with the computers and reset maintenance alerts.
If you join the MOA, you have access to the Anonymous Book that is a great resource should you nave any problems on the road and need assistance in the unlikely event you have a mechanical failure.
Yes, there is life after HD, regardless of what the HOG's tell you. Your only real issue with going over the BMW is that your Harley buddies will think you have lost your mind. And there will be comments like "When are you going to start that thing?".
Last edited by ka5ysy; 09-27-2012 at 12:13 PM.
Doug, 2011 R1200RT Polar Metallic
MSF #127350, Instructor, Louisiana Dept of Public Safety
Motorcycle Safety, Awareness & Operator Training Program
NAUI Instructor #36288
I have been riding BMW's since 1975. I have only broken down once where I couldn't fix it myself. This was back in the 1980's. I was riding somewhere in Maine. I had absolutely no clue where I was. So, I took out my BMWMOA Anonymous Book and found the only BMW dealer in Maine.
Me: My bike broke down and I need help.
Dealer: Where are you?
Me: I have no clue. Some where on the coast of Maine.
Dealer: Describe where you are.
Me: I took this long winding road, and now I am next to the ocean and unbelievably I found this telephone booth in the middle of nowhere.
Dealer: Oh... I know where you are. See you in a couple hours.
In a couple hours the dealer showed up with a pickup truck. Two days later I was back on the road.
It doesn't matter how many dealers there are. You just need one good one. Most of the BMW dealers are pretty good. With the BMWMOA Anonymous Book you really don't have to worry about it too much.
It's impressive to realize that the guy in the picture below rode his scooter from S. America to the Arctic Ocean, Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. I wonder how much sleep he lost worrying about dealer support along his route? "Certainty is the natural enemy of adventure."
P.S. I recall my father telling me of a trip he and his brother took from Kansas City to L.A. and back ... around 1928 or 1929 on a 1920-something Harley-Davidson. Dirt roads, flat tires, roadside repairs, and sleeping alongside the dirt "highway" at night. That story always made me feel like such a softy (which I am).
Last edited by Norms 427; 09-28-2012 at 11:08 PM.
Now: '12 R1200RT Midnight Blue Metallic / '11 Ural Patrol 2WD ridden to Alaska / '09 KLR 650 / '05 HD Heritage Softail / '08 Harley Sportster 1200C / '85 Yamaha VMax bought new. I wasn't ready to say goodbye: www.shaunlunt.typepad.com
First of all, thanks to all of you, with the comments, advice on my decision. I took my Harley to the BMW dealer yesterday to make the deal. I have a new Tri-Color R1200RT on order and most likely won't see it before there's snow on the ground. I took off yesterday morning on a beautiful still clear day. Did I mentioned that it was 28 deg when I left? The dealer couldn't have been any better to work with. Now I have to decide how to paint the rear trunk since the bike is the brown/tan color. I'll come up with something. Also looking at engine roll bar options ect. There will always be something to buy.