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Thread: Removing body panels from RT

  1. #1
    Registered User fletchdude's Avatar
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    Removing body panels from RT

    I'm going to paint my bike this winter and need to remove the body panels. My question is can I start and ride the bike with them all removed. I was going to remove them in my garage which I can heat (it's getting cold here in Maryland), and then move the bike into the barn which isn't heated about 200 feet away. When the panels come back from the painter I'd like ride it back to the garage for reassembly. Pushing the bike back and forth is an option but not a good one. The path to the barn and back would be a challenge. I have audio if that's a factor.

    Jim

  2. #2
    not so retired henzilla's Avatar
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    Short answer, yes.
    Have buds ride over w/out panels on R and K's...sometimes show up for rides like that
    Have a friend who left the panels off his 1150RT so long, they do not line up anymore as the tank has warped...he has ridden it like this for two years
    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

  3. #3

    I think you have things mixed up

    You should keep your bike in the heated garage and your "S.O."s vehicle in the cold barn......
    - just saying...................

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    14 or newer be careful removing upper side panels, lift up no out, or you'll break the lousy tabs
    One other suggestion is couple pieces of foam board, marked with location of removed screws, their are several different shoulder lengths

  5. #5
    Registered User fletchdude's Avatar
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    Thanks for the suggestions. Especially evicting the wife's car. I should have included which RT and or updated my profile to reflect the 2014 wet head. I have read about the tabs. I have one loose panel right now and the bike is at the dealer just in case I have a warranty repair or replace issue. Good tip about the foam board from t6pilot. I assume you meant sketch the panel with the screw locations.
    Fletch
    2014 RTW, 2007 R12R, 2013 F700GS

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    Quote Originally Posted by fletchdude View Post
    Thanks for the suggestions. Especially evicting the wife's car. I should have included which RT and or updated my profile to reflect the 2014 wet head. I have read about the tabs. I have one loose panel right now and the bike is at the dealer just in case I have a warranty repair or replace issue. Good tip about the foam board from t6pilot. I assume you meant sketch the panel with the screw locations.
    You are correct sir, I should have also added I Outline the shape of the removed panel and punch the screws into the foam in appropriate places

  7. #7
    Registered User LFarling's Avatar
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    If you can push the bike around you should be able to drive it around at walking speeds. I can not see any issue. If you remove the black "funnels" from behind the radiators that is all I can think of that falls out. I have had mine on and off a bunch.

    Pay attention to the advice of how those top front panels come off as braking those tabs is easy if you don't understand how they fit. Like I said I have had mine on and off at least 6 or 7 times since I owned it. The first was to verify my top front panels were OK, my left one had a broken tab and the dealer replaced it under warranty.
    Last edited by LFarling; 11-24-2016 at 01:45 PM.
    2015 R 1200 RT LC
    San Marino Blue
    Dark Side 205/50/ZR17

  8. #8
    This reminds me: I wanna paint this RT white also, like all my others.
    "...whether is clear to you or not, the universe is unfolding as it should"

  9. #9
    Registered User fletchdude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wethead View Post
    This reminds me: I wanna paint this RT white also, like all my others.
    I'm painting mine the Lupin blue metallic and white two tone combination from the new RRS.
    Fletch
    2014 RTW, 2007 R12R, 2013 F700GS

  10. #10
    Registered User fletchdude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LFarling View Post
    The first was to verify my top front panels were OK, my left one had a broken tab and the dealer replaced it under warranty.
    I'm pretty sure I have a broken tab on the left panel as well. The top rear moves if I wiggle it. The right panel is rock solid. Since I'm painting anyway, I'm hoping I get new panel and they pay for the paint on that one panel.

    The tabs seem to be prone to breakage even if they weren't removed. I rented a wet head RT in Portugal from IMT and the left panel was so loose I was afraid it was going to come off.
    Fletch
    2014 RTW, 2007 R12R, 2013 F700GS

  11. #11
    Registered User LFarling's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fletchdude View Post
    I'm pretty sure I have a broken tab on the left panel as well. The top rear moves if I wiggle it. The right panel is rock solid. Since I'm painting anyway, I'm hoping I get new panel and they pay for the paint on that one panel.

    The tabs seem to be prone to breakage even if they weren't removed. I rented a wet head RT in Portugal from IMT and the left panel was so loose I was afraid it was going to come off.
    As they come painted I do not think you will get paint money.

    I do not think they break on their own. I think they get broken at the dealers when prepped or checked for sale. Right side is anti freeze overflow so that would need pulled to check and fill, left side not sure what is there but since mine and yours are/were broken it makes me wonder why that side would be off? Unless the come that way in the crate and they are getting broken by going on the first time?

    Just a little knack to pulling the grommet studs out first, and then lifting the rear of the panel strait off with out pulling it off or away from the frame. Like I say I have had mine off a bunch and no issues, but I watched and knew how to remove them. I still hold my breath doing it. I also would make sure it was a little warm where working on it. Plastic is more forgiving when warm.
    2015 R 1200 RT LC
    San Marino Blue
    Dark Side 205/50/ZR17

  12. #12
    Registered User fletchdude's Avatar
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    The dealer verified my left panel has a broken tab and a new panel is on order. Yes, they do come painted apparently. I hope they can get one here in the US. If from Germany it'll take awhile. Covered under warranty none the less.

    I've never had the panel off so it's interesting how it got broken?
    Fletch
    2014 RTW, 2007 R12R, 2013 F700GS

  13. #13
    Registered User fletchdude's Avatar
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    Update, lots of work to get broken tabs covered by warranty and I can see why. Really bad design. Very costly to BMW to make good on these. I've had to deal with a bit of denile and displaced blame for who touched what and when from previous maintenance and aftermarket installations. In the end BMW owned up.

    In the mean time I'm waiting for a new panel to arrive from Germany. So I went to Home Depot and picked up some 3M Velcro rated at 5 lbs to keep the panel secure for now. It really works pretty good and I'm thinking it's a better solution in the long run.
    Fletch
    2014 RTW, 2007 R12R, 2013 F700GS

  14. #14
    not so retired henzilla's Avatar
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    Many prior models have tabs that can and will break, some hidden screws on some that folks miss and yank loose. Nothing new for the Beemers, just a new version of an old issue.

    Lots of zip-ties, Velcro, and JB Weld has been used since the mid1990's on a lot of bikes I have seen and or own

    The 05 GS's had magic wings as tank covers for many and the previous owner of our 99S missed the screw behind the Roundel on the backside of the side panel and snapped that off on both sides...made for a wiggly set of lowers until I found out why.

    The two small black covers under the riders saddle on 11XX RT's are almost all held on with zipties it seems.

    Aggravating ain't it?
    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

  15. #15
    Registered User fletchdude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by henzilla View Post
    Aggravating ain't it?
    Yes it is. BMW seems to go too far with trying to not have fasteners exposed. Well at least I know how to get them on and off with hopes of not breaking anything. To be honest, if I had to live with the Velcro, I'd be ok. I'm going to keep some Velcro strips and zip ties in the tool kit from now on.

    Hey, just an editorial note, none of this takes away from how awesome this bike is to ride. I'm looking forward to having her painted for spring.
    Fletch
    2014 RTW, 2007 R12R, 2013 F700GS

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