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Thread: 1st BMW, impressions and questions

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  1. #1
    Ohio RT
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    SW Ohio

    1st BMW, impressions and questions

    So after nearly 40 years riding, last 10 years on four assorted HD's, I finally take the plunge, sell the E-glide and buy a nice 05 R1150RT. (I have ridden K1600's and would ride one now if I could swing the price)

    Rode it 1100 miles in 29 hours to get it home and loved every mile. Ridden another 2.5k since and it only gets better. First time in many, many years I got off the bike after 500 miles and my ears weren't ringing!

    Bar backs, lowered driver boards, seat change and better yet.

    Linked ABS the biggest thing to get used to but have developed a light touch with the right hand and learned to ignore the rear pedal for the most part.

    Dry clutch is another "gotta get used to" but the old school shifting technique of preloading the shifter and just pop the clutch seems to work well. (But I do miss my friction zone around town but again, will get used to it I'm sure)

    Handles like a dream, light, balanced and responsive. I discovered Saturday that the low point in the lean is actually the toe of my boots, now that is different...

    Issues? Very few...

    Front end dive on hard braking seems really excessive? (But it sure does stop in a hurry) I would really like to address this but how?

    All this technology and no self cancelling turn signals? Seriously? Kisen module going in this weekend...

    The Security fob buttons are ridiculous given the fact we all wear gloves? (PITA - The security system may be coming off)

    Helmet stowage or locking? I have a C3, doesn't fit in a side case. The shape of the lid on the top case seems very strange and limiting. Can't lock it underseat due to C3's lack of d-rings. Can't stand lugging the helmet around at stops. What am I missing here? Are there oversize lids available for the top case or side cases?

    I just renewed my MOA membership yesterday and went for three years, I'm hooked.

  2. #2
    Registered User devauxb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Western NYS
    Congratulations on your new purchase and am glad that it is a postive first impression. I suspect that you will appreciate it even more and more as the miles pile on. Glad to have you on board.

    Anti-dive: surprised to hear that as that is actually one of the benefits of the telelever/paralever suspension. The shocks may not be properly adjusted, or more likely worn out. Search the threads, lots of dialog (and differing opinions), but a fair amount of people that conclude new shocks 'renew' the bike considerably.

    Never had self-cancelling signals, so I don't know what I am missing. I do have to say that I am a fan of BMWs (no phased out) turn signal layout.

    Again, I don't have a security system, so can't comment.

    Helmet storage: This summer I purchased a Shoei Qwest and had a devil of a time finding a way to store it. As you probably have noted, the left and right side cases are of different shapes and sizes to accomodate exhaust cutout. After many tries, I found that I could fit my helmet in the right side case if I had positioned it with the visor facing the back and twisting/angling the helmet so that it faced slightly towards the bike (it minimized the width).

    Have fun!
    2002 R1150RS (Pacific Blue)

  3. #3
    The self cancelling signals is an issue with me as I came from an 80's bike that had it. After riding for yrs I'm used to it now but it sure was a shocker.

    Might just need a new shock, how many miles on the bike?

    And I think there are 3 different sizes of case lids for the side cases. My full face works in my side cases and I have a givi truck that it fits too. There is a little metal contraption that you can hook to your helmet and hook it to the case lid handle but I believe you need the D ring. Oh well, I'm trying ;-)
    Brian - Everett, WA
    99 R1100RT - Got Kewl-Aid? IBA - SS1K's, BBG
    I started out with nothing and I still have most of it left!

  4. #4
    Registered User roger 04 rt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Florida & Massachusetts
    I made the Kisan SM-5 upgrade and like it a lot. I have the corner (signal) lights on, and the brake light sensor wire attached. This flashes the corner lights when you stop. I also added the Kisan flashing-brake-lamp to replace the stock bulb.

    I'm curious, on your Harleys did you ever install the XIED device?

    The other things I've done to my 28,000 mile '04 RT:

    --Wilbers Shocks from Beemershop

    --Left Side Cam Chain Tensioner Upgrade

    --Replace all hoses in the fuel tank. This is something you want to have a plan for. Mine (and others) split and start to leak. You don't know until they fail.

    --12 lbs. of lead diving shot in the bottom of the Glove box to eliminate pull-to-the-right caused by fuel imbalance to the right side.

    --Innovate Motorsports LC-1 in place of stock O2. This makes a big difference in 2000-3500 RPM performance and eliminates any tendency to rough running or surging.

    I've been really pleased. This is a terrific motorcycle.

  5. #5
    Registered User ANDYVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Green Bay, WI
    Like others on here I really question this comment, "Front end dive on hard braking seems really excessive?"

    the Telever (and Duolever) are the only mass-produced succesful alternate front suspensions that LIMIT front end dive during braking. The chassis brake torque reaction common to std front end bikes, is transmitted into the frame on the Telelever chassis. This makes the bike very stable under braking.

    I'd checkout the front end, make sure all the connections are properly lubed and adjusted. Anything over 30,000 miles on the bike means if the front shock is stock, its shot, no good, no dampen action at all. A good quality aftermarket shock is worth the money here, especially a rebuildable shock. Hagon makes some nicely priced options.
    Last edited by ANDYVH; 11-14-2012 at 01:59 AM.
    Get trained! The best "performance" upgrade you can get is YOU. Visit for training info.

  6. #6
    Ohio RT
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    SW Ohio
    Wow, great responses...

    I'm sure the Kisan module will solve the TS issue with the added run-brake-turn benefits as well.

    The bike has just gone over 30k miles so it sound like shock may help on the front end. It definately has a dive too it but like I said, it stops right now as well. Some of it may be just my perceptions coming from the heavy bikes.

    Since the weather here is starting to turn, my plan is to pull the tupperware and give it all a good baseline service and inspection.

    I have the fuel filter, clamps and oring to go into the tank, I will pickup the hoses and get them done while I'm in there. Looks like these are the same convoluted hoses that are prone to issues in the HD's?

    Roger, yes, I had xied's on my last softail. It really helped richen it up a bit, cooled the back cylinder head temp down to tolerable in traffic and the throttle response was much better. But that was on a bike with no real mods done. Once you go to a stage 1 breather and free flowing exhaust I think there are better options.

    And cam tensioners? I was hopeful those two words were a distant memory after the early 2000's in HD's.

    I will try again to get the C3 into the side cases but I sure couldn't get it to fit the last ride. I will look into the wide case lids as well.

    And I'm headed to the search box now to do a little "shocking" research...

    Thanks for all of the inputs and words of encouragement. Yes, it is a great motorcycle and it is going to get even better...

  7. #7
    Minnesota Nice! braddog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Twin Cities - MN
    Quote Originally Posted by 175093 View Post

    Helmet stowage or locking? I have a C3, doesn't fit in a side case. The shape of the lid on the top case seems very strange and limiting. Can't lock it underseat due to C3's lack of d-rings. Can't stand lugging the helmet around at stops. What am I missing here? Are there oversize lids available for the top case or side cases?
    I will say that when I got my first BMW oilhead that my greatest disappointment was the size of the sidecases. My helmet doesn't fit in there, either, nor does my laptop briefcase. Now to be fair, this is in comparison to the sidebags on my '77 R100RS. Briefcase, no problem, helmet, no problem.

    I'm thinking of just getting an aftermarket topcase, either Givi or Hepco, for briefcase and helmet stowage.

    Welcome to the BMW MOA.
    Brad D. - Member #105766
    '77 R100RS - Black Beauty (big pipe, baby!)
    '94 R1100RS - Sylvia

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