How to inspect a 04 K1200GT - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 13th, 2010, 2:53 pm Thread Starter
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How to inspect a 04 K1200GT

Hi guys ... longtime lurker and now out of the closet.

I am going today to the guys at the local BMW shop and are selling a 2004 K1200GT with ~ 9k miles on it for $9000 ( linky )

I was wondering other than some oil changes what else is there to look for? I think the tires by 9k should need changing. Is there major maintenance coming up? any weak points to look out for?

oh and a more general question:


I was wondering first if this bike is ok for commuting (I live in Chicago and ride about 20mi round trip every day in traffic) and how much of a bear it is compared to my current bike a KLR650. I'l still have the KLR for commuting (which it rocks at by the way... all due respect to fine German engineering) but it will be far too tempting to not take the BMW out everyday. I'm not afraid that it is top-heavy (the KLR is) but i hear its a heavy mofo (my klr is like 460lbs i think), should that make me rethink my choice?

I have been riding for about 3.5 years and take the MSF BRT every year.

Thanks guys,

Eric
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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 13th, 2010, 4:14 pm
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I'd be surprised if a BMW dealer would leave anything obvious on a bike you could find, or else one small cheap thing so you don't look too hard at anything else (common sales ploy).

Seriously though, check out your dealers service reputation, if you lurk around the dealership you can usually get to talk to other riders who use them. Also ask to look around their workshop, if they are proud of it they will be very willing. Remember you aren't just buying a bike, but a relationship as these are quite complicated machines.

Get a worthwhile warranty. Whatever the condition and mileage you want some insurance against any big bills ahead. Only get the bike fully serviced. If it has already been done, ask to see the service history and check if any recalls are outstanding. It's low mileage for the year so see if it has been in the shop for service on a regular time basis or has it had none but the 6K?

See if they will let you trial it for a day, or at least a couple of hours. You need to know if it will fit you and looking over a hot engine after a ride can be more revealing than looking at it in the showroom on idle.

Older low mileage bikes can have problems - fluids have been hanging around, tires go hard, seals stiffen up.

Good luck with the bike.



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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 13th, 2010, 7:25 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slappy00
Hi guys ... longtime lurker and now out of the closet.

I am going today to the guys at the local BMW shop and are selling a 2004 K1200GT with ~ 9k miles on it for $9000 ( linky )

I was wondering other than some oil changes what else is there to look for? I think the tires by 9k should need changing. Is there major maintenance coming up? any weak points to look out for?


I was wondering first if this bike is ok for commuting (I live in Chicago and ride about 20mi round trip every day in traffic) and how much of a bear it is compared to my current bike a KLR650. I'l still have the KLR for commuting (which it rocks at by the way... all due respect to fine German engineering) but it will be far too tempting to not take the BMW out everyday. I'm not afraid that it is top-heavy (the KLR is) but i hear its a heavy mofo (my klr is like 460lbs i think), should that make me rethink my choice?



I have been riding for about 3.5 years and take the MSF BRT every year.

Thanks guys,
Eric
1st thing, do a KBB & NADA book price on it. And lead with your head on this thing, NOT that you GOTTA have it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! After all, It's 7 yrs. old(8 yrs. in a couple months), out of production and a VERY respectable 9 G's!!

2) Well, the tires are shot from old age, let alone by mileage (also shot).

3) My own personal opinion(which ain't worth spit) is the bike has too few miles on it. I believe lo-miles contribute to trouble down the road. The bike lays for long periods, gets a lot of condensation in the crankcase, trans, and rear drive, etc.. Other things effected by lo mileage is, the seals dry out, are not exercised or lubed.

4) I mean we are talking about a bike that was run 1250mi. a year for maybe 7yrs. or a bike that was run 9K and left to lay for 6years. Which one???????

5) The GT weighs 660 wet, without options or accessories. See the attachment.
It ain't no ballerina in heavy traffic.

6) Oh, don't respect "fine German engineering" too much. They to have warts and an attitude also.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 2004 BMW K1200GT.pdf (348.0 KB, 85 views)

Bruce C
'04 K1200RS Capri Blue(totaled)
2008 Triumph Sprint ST

Last edited by brucecha; Aug 13th, 2010 at 7:33 pm.
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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 13th, 2010, 8:50 pm Thread Starter
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thanks!

It's a consignment bike.

Apparently it has been in two stables with guys who had too many bikes. The last guy only rode 1k on it. I agree that low mileage make me nervous, but it starts fine and looks ok (no drips or leaks).

The 12k service is no joke, and got quoted $700 if the valves need to be adjusted. The tires are new/different and the front brake has been replaced.

The bike starts fine and idles ok. Tomarrow I am going over there with a cashiers check in hand, but will take it for a test ride first. The sales guy allegedly took it for a trip last weekend (which makes sense as they updated the mileage on the bike recently). I don't see anything obviously crazy about it, but now im ind of with regards to the low mileage. I mean is that really a red flag or approach with caution?

Thanks guys I have always wanted a BMW and this bike is beautiful and has all that i want for speed, and comfort so I am drawn to it.

Best,

Eric
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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 13th, 2010, 8:59 pm
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That's what I meant by leading with your wallet, and not your heart.
Front brakes last 45K+ on these bikes. Why were they replaced?
Anyway, its your money.

Bruce C
'04 K1200RS Capri Blue(totaled)
2008 Triumph Sprint ST
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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 13th, 2010, 9:40 pm Thread Starter
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Front brakes last 45K+ on these bikes. Why were they replaced?
Hopefully it was just the pads, however yeah.. wonder why they were replaced. I did some sleuthing on the interwebs and pad changes come anywhere between 10k and 25k miles for the front brake. Guess it wouldn't hurt to ask in any event.
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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 14th, 2010, 12:19 am
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$9K for 9K miles is slightly under Kelly Blue Book's suggested retail of $9585 for the Chicago area. Given the mileage, and assuming the bike is, overall, in a condition appropriate for low miles, this is probably a decent price. Check the tire wear. Agreed that, if these are the original tires that came withe bike in '04, they should be replaced sooner than later. OTOH, at 9K, it's fairly likely these aren't the original tires - end of problem, one hopes. Brake wear... who knows, maybe the PO was hard on the brakes or let them drag a lot. I'd at least ask the dealer for any service history on the bike.

Check the seals in the drive shaft for obvious signs of oil spray or weeping. An oily film on the back of the housing for the drive shaft is Not A Good Sign. The problem can be corrected. I'd let the seller either pay to have it put right or take a hit on the price, equal to the cost of the repair.

Past that, there are the usual used bike issues (how's the battery - 7 years is just about the end of the road for a battery). There are smaller issues that should be looked into - for example, the quick disconnect fittings in the fuel lines at the fuel tank. BMW's original plastic fittings snap off sooner or later. When it happens, you won't be happy. Either the PO replaced the plastic bits with metal bits or you should do it (~$80 in parts).

Commuting on the KGT... sure, you can do it. You won't be maneuvering like a little Vespa, but the bike handles well enough in stop and go traffic. Remember, too, the bike is water cooled, so that when the weather's hot, and you're stuck in traffic, you don't have to worry about the engine cooking itself, as it would if it were air cooled. Two things I'd add to the bike, particularly for city and commuter riding: a plastic headlight protector from Cee Baily (1/8" polycarbonate shield that will stop rocks from trashing the headlight - $500+ for a replacement), and an oil cooler screen (try the one from Wunderlich), also to minimize thrown rock/debris damage.

Good luck with your KGT!

Not all who wander are lost. Which still leaves room for more than a few lost wanderers...

Red Flash - '03 K1200RS, lightly farkled
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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 14th, 2010, 1:29 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slappy00
Hopefully it was just the pads, however yeah.. wonder why they were replaced. I did some sleuthing on the interwebs and pad changes come anywhere between 10k and 25k miles for the front brake. Guess it wouldn't hurt to ask in any event.
I bet some pistons were siezed. There are 8 on the front so chances are high. Still, that means one less problem and at least you know the brake system was flushed. Just make sure the ABS modulator is included on their warranty!



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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 14th, 2010, 2:05 pm
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Originally Posted by slappy00
Thanks guys I have always wanted a BMW and this bike is beautiful and has all that i want for speed, and comfort so I am drawn to it.Eric
Eric

Don't be blinded by your enthusiasm. Be patient ad shop around. Chances are that bike will not fly off the shelf and even if it does, other bikes will become available. Take your time unless you are very certain.

$9K is a high-end price, while perhaps not unfair. I got my '03 RS with 15K miles last spring (in Florida) for $6k, and I have had many of the same reservations you have. So far, so good. A front tire and rear brake pads (all worn as to be expected).

There will be other deals, if you are unsure.

"Cogito ergo zoom!"
Safety comes before speed. - Check the dictionary.

1999 Sportster "S" Cardinal Red
2000 ZRX1100 Jade Green
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post #10 of 36 (permalink) Old Aug 14th, 2010, 4:53 pm
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I know the shop you are talking about. I've bought a few things from them over the years but never had any service done. I go to Chicago BMW. Moto has a very good shop. Other guys I have talked with have gotten good service there. They do a lot of older bike restorations. Usually there's some old R or 70's KZ sitting on the floor. The front 1/2 of the store and rear half are two different worlds. Yuppy scooters, Piaggio lids and hot chicks in front. Real bikes and grease monkeys in the back.
I guess another one of the reasons I don't shop there much is their pricing. Prices are a bit high every time I check in there. They quoted me +/- $500 for a set of new Avons for my K12. I just laughed. That was balanced but still.
The price of the bike is a bit high for my taste. I would haggle down a grand or so at least or walk. Consider calling Mike at Chicago BMW and see what he has. I know some guys don't like the place, it's a bit clicky. They are good guys and have always been good to me with bikes and parts. I always recommend them. No I have no interest in the place beyond being a customer.
I last thing, I use my K12RS as my primary bike. Blasting around the City is no problem. The power comes in handy. If parking downtown a lot I would suggest buying a topcase and leaving the side bags off.
Good luck
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