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Thread: 2004 R1200GS - wobbly rear wheel - final drive??

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    2004 R1200GS - wobbly rear wheel - final drive??

    Late start to bike season for me this year due to various distractions... on initial checkover today found rear wheel wobbly, can move about a quarter inch left/right by hand when on centre stand. Turns OK.
    Wheel off: black crumbly material fell out. At first glance it looked as if a plastic shim or washer might have disintegrated - but there should be no such thing and I guess it's a leak from the final drive which stayed within the wheel and dried

    The hub/rotor is wobbly - two photos just about show 1mm displacement near the snapring when pushed by hand one way or the other.

    Any advice for next steps diagnostics or likely parts? Dealer is a long way away - it's likely to be a DIY.

    Don't recall any riding anomalies when last used (late September 2014) and I guess I should have noticed a wobble this bad...?

    Not the best week in the year to post asking for technical advice - but I'll be away the next few days

    Thanks, David
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    Registered User mneblett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dhs View Post
    Late start to bike season for me this year due to various distractions... on initial checkover today found rear wheel wobbly, can move about a quarter inch left/right by hand when on centre stand. Turns OK.
    Wheel off: black crumbly material fell out. At first glance it looked as if a plastic shim or washer might have disintegrated - but there should be no such thing and I guess it's a leak from the final drive which stayed within the wheel and dried

    The hub/rotor is wobbly - two photos just about show 1mm displacement near the snapring when pushed by hand one way or the other.

    Any advice for next steps diagnostics or likely parts? Dealer is a long way away - it's likely to be a DIY.

    Don't recall any riding anomalies when last used (late September 2014) and I guess I should have noticed a wobble this bad...?

    Not the best week in the year to post asking for technical advice - but I'll be away the next few days

    Thanks, David
    On the "ring" of stuff -- than looks to me like dried mud/dirt. If it were oil, it wouldn't dry crumble like in your picture, and there is no leak path from the FD that would put oil between the wheel and the hub in that manner.

    On the lateral movement, that is not a "classic" final drive failure, in the sense of the bearings failing. That is looseness of the disc/wheel carrier on the axle stub.

    When the first R12GSs were released, they immediately showed a problem and had to come back to have their flanges replaced precisely because of this problem -- the disc carrier/wheel flange being loose on the axle splines. So despite the distance, that is reason #1 I would be looking to have this addressed by BMW.

    Reason #2 for having a dealer address the problem is that there is currently (in the U.S., and I *believe* Canada) a formal safety recall to replace all of the aluminum disc carriers with steel carriers. This is due to concern over cracks developing at the disc bolt holes in the aluminum carriers.

    Finally, reason #3 for having a dealer do it is it is somewhat involved, requiring pulling tools/fixtures and heat. Certainly not "dealer only" work, but more than most owners will want to do. This video shows the process (in Italian, but the video is good): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veilFcDC2zc The one thing this guy could have done to make his life easier was to remove the brake disc bolts before removing the flange -- there is a cut-out portion at the lower rear surface of the FD (at about 7-8 o'clock) that is there expressly for this purpose.
    Last edited by mneblett; 07-27-2015 at 12:45 AM.
    Mark Neblett
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    Good info.. thank you. Is that recall a very recent one? I think I did see something mentioned about it in this forum but haven't received any letter from BMW.

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    Registered User mneblett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dhs View Post
    Good info.. thank you. Is that recall a very recent one? I think I did see something mentioned about it in this forum but haven't received any letter from BMW.
    Just started in the U.S., letters just going out. You'll have to check with BMW Canada -- a call to their customer service line or a visit by the Canadian equivalent of the U.S. DOT recall page should get you the info you need.
    Mark Neblett
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    It certainly looks a good candidate:



    Transport Canada Recall # 2015101

    Recall Date 2015/03/11

    Notification Type Safety Mfr

    System Powertrain

    Manufacturer Recall Number


    Units Affected 5,343

    Category Motorcycle

    Recall Details

    On certain motorcycles, the threaded holes on the rear wheel flange could crack if the wheel bolts are tightened beyond the specified torque limit during servicing. Over time, this could allow the bolts to back out of their threaded holes, causing the rear wheel to become loose. This could result in a loss of stability of the motorcycle, and increase the risk of a crash causing injury and/or property damage. Correction: Dealers will replace the aluminum rear wheel flange with a steel flange.


    Make Model Model Year(s) Affected

    BMW HP2 ENDURO 2006 2007
    BMW HP2 MEGAMOTO 2008
    BMW HP2 SPORT 2008 2009 2010
    BMW K1200GT 2006 2007 2008
    BMW K1200R 2006 2007 2008
    BMW K1200S 2005 2006 2007 2008
    BMW K1300GT2 009 2010 2011
    BMW K1300R 2009 2010 2011
    BMW K1300S 2009 2010 2011
    BMW R1200GS 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
    BMW R1200GS ADVENTURE 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
    BMW R1200R 2007 2008 2009 2010
    BMW R1200RT 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
    BMW R1200S 2007
    BMW R1200ST 2005 2006 2007

    Date Modified:2015-07-26

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    Registered User mneblett's Avatar
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    That's exactly the one.
    Mark Neblett
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    Looked at the youtube video you mention - yes i think it would be do-able but would need the part and special tools (which take time and/or money) so I may was well wait to clarify the recall situation. Have sent an enquiry to the dealer I purchased from (7 hours drive).

    There are no obvious cracks (something behind the flange perhaps), the flange can rotate a few degrees on the axle as well as wobble side to side - I would guess the splines on the flange are ground down (and yes it is aluminium). Looks as if it would slip off without effort after removing the snapring and presumably a replacement flange would indeed solve the problem.

    I'm still puzzled by how suddenly it happened - ground-down splines would happen gradually - so maybe something did crack that I can't see. Can't really believe I was riding it last year with the wheel that loose. Was unusually cold last winter, perhaps that caused a crack in an aluminium flange which is an interference fit over a steel axle

    Thanks again for your info.

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    Update.. took to dealer. They've done "hundreds" of the flange recall, not seen anything like this one.
    The splines on the flange are ground down to almost nothing and, worse, the splines on the axle are ground down too though less badly.
    The wheel was held on by the brake caliper and the circlip shown in the top picture - not much strength there.
    A new flange fits loosely - supposed to be a press fit or heat shrink

    Dealer reckons it needs replacement final drive and are talking to BMW about it.

    The flange is different to any they have seen too: has steel threaded inserts to take the lug bolts, the normal ones do not, a single alloy piece

    This was a very early 1200GS, delivered June 2004. Possibly the factory used a few prototype parts..

    Pictures show the worn flange and a new one (phone pictures, not wonderful)

    FYI...flange-old-1.jpgflange-new.jpgaxle.jpg

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    Nice follow-up David
    It will be good to hear the resolution.
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    Kool Aid Dispenser! jimvonbaden's Avatar
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    David,

    You have one of the early 500 final drives. They came with the steel inserts on the wheel holes. Most of them were replaced under a tech bulletin, not a recall. This should be a no brainer replacement on BMW for the whole final drive.

    Good luck.

    Jim

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    Would you have a reference for that bulletin? Initial BMW response is that the recall is for cracks in flange threaded holes, not spline issues, and won't help.

    Thanks, David

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    Dry looking splines

    Just my 2 cents. On my splines ST1300 rear we use Moly 60. Prevents Just what u showed in your pictures. Applied Moly 60 paste every tire change. Bike has 176,000 mile splines look like new.
    ??? does BMW call for any such lube on these splines.
    I do need to get the BMW shop manual for my 2015 R1200RT.

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    Registered User mneblett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by st13rt12 View Post
    ??? does BMW call for any such lube on these splines.
    No, but that is to be expected as there should be no relative motion between these splines -- the wheel carrier is a shrink-fit onto the axle stub. Other than the first 2005 GS's having problems with loose carriers (an immediate bad press/service campaign issue), this is the first I've heard of a wheel carrier working itself loose on an axle.

    That's also why, with this being a 2004 (Canadian bikes have a different model year designation than the U.S.), I would be pressing BMW Canada much harder -- it appears that somebody there making the warranty coverage decision doesn't remember back ten years ago to the initial embarrassing roll-out of the GS, and is denying the claim because this doesn't fit "neatly" within the existing campaign. Too early to give up, IMO.
    Mark Neblett
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