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Thread: '16 GS water crossing prep?

  1. #1
    Fuse lit.... PittsDriver's Avatar
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    '16 GS water crossing prep?

    When we did the TAT last year on KLRs we encountered many water crossings that came up to the axles and a few, one in particular that covered the wheels. The KLRs handled it fine with ne'er a hiccup. When I bought my '16 GS I asked the dealer about how deep the water could be handled on the bike. He's a very seasoned adv guy and he said "up to the axles" was about all he would try.

    Now, I'm looking at the Touratech catalog that just came in the mail and there's a kit in there to extend the FD vent to a higher place so that it won't suck in water. Doh! Clearly there's more to water prep than I know so I'm asking the question here if anyone can provide a detailed list of all the things that must be done to prep a GSW for deep water and even then, what's the deepest water that can be done without too much risk of drowning it or contaminating vital bits. I'm not asking to do something extreme like extended snorkels to submarine it - just deep water up over, say, the cylinders. Can it be prepped and done?

    I've searched the forum and all the advice I've found is mainly about riding technique for crossing, maybe a few comments about intake snorkels, but nothing comprehensive. That makes me go hmmmm....

    Here's an example of a crossing we did on the KLRs. Would you do this on a GSW?

    https://youtu.be/3zy_YJMMs0Y

    https://youtu.be/RJmBFjp1j7U
    2012 K1600GT, Vermillion Red (for the epic road trips) (gone but not forgotten)
    2013 S1000RR, Granite Gray (for the track)
    2014 KLR 650, White/Black (for the TAT)
    2016 R1200GS Triple Black (for all of it)

  2. #2
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    I've scene video's of GS's doing the above
    If it my bike the answer is NO
    Much heavier bike, electronics galore
    Remember a KLR is a cockroach and can't be killed
    But if you do it take video, we gotta see the results

  3. #3
    not so retired henzilla's Avatar
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    The downside of BMW adding the vent around 2012? to the FD was it is low and looks like an easy egress for stream crossings. If you regularly splash in puddles that deep, raising the vent with an extension tube would be up on the list.

    As shown in JVB's rear spline lube he posted the other day...water will get around the plastic seal of the swingarm boot eventually...either from an extended submersion or using the high pressure wand that folks love to do. Dropping the drive will not increase the odds if done correctly to check things out on occasion. It used to be the only way to drain the drives. Have seen some pristine ones and some really rusted ones on first inspection.

    Have crossed a couple with water right at lower edge of jugs...not something I do if avoidable. My days of doing that on a big GSA are very rare if at all anymore.

    Folks do it and there are videos to prove it, but it's a heavy bike when it parallels the stream bed as it takes a nap and water is sucked into the snorkle until it dies...right Bob? Then it is kinda ugly as you will have about twelve qts. of gravy in your engine where oil used to be.


    A lot of electronics as mentioned...risk/reward of riding a tanker.
    Steve Henson
    SABMWRA MOA Club#62's Flat Fixer/ current forum moderator
    It's not the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away-D.Dillon/G. Strait

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by PittsDriver View Post

    Here's an example of a crossing we did on the KLRs. Would you do this on a GSW?

    https://youtu.be/3zy_YJMMs0Y

    https://youtu.be/RJmBFjp1j7U
    Yes, look where your air intakes are on that bike... way up high.

    A crossing this deep on an older model would take water in.

    It's recommended to change the rear drive lube after prolonged submersion, thank goodness now that's easier to do. I had a "lifetime fill" rear drive.....

    Also recommended are the right tires, the bottoms of those puddles are slick, your bike weighs way more than a KLR and it would suck to get stuck in the middle of one of those puddles.

    Ian
    Go soothingly through the grease mud, as there lurks the skid demon.
    __________________________________________________ ________________________________
    '67 Trail 90 || '86 R80 G/SPD+ || '97 F650ST || '00 1150 GS || '06 HP2e || '07 Xchallenge || '14 Grom

  5. #5
    not so retired henzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visian View Post
    Yes, look where your air intakes are on that bike... way up high.

    A crossing this deep on an older model would take water in.

    Ian
    I forget the intakes are a bit higher on the Wetheads...keep movin' and don't porpoise into a hole
    Steve Henson
    SABMWRA MOA Club#62's Flat Fixer/ current forum moderator
    It's not the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away-D.Dillon/G. Strait

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