Front shock leaking - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old Nov 30th, 2017, 12:40 pm Thread Starter
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Front shock leaking

The front shock on my 2010 1300GT is leaking.

Only found this out after getting the bike back from the clutch change so its a new issue.

Mechanic says it can be rebuilt? Is that preferable to replacement?
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old Nov 30th, 2017, 1:42 pm
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No one is doing rebuilds on K1300GT shocks. You would be better off calling Ted Porter's Beemershop and getting a new set geared to your weight and riding style.
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1984 Kawasaki ZX750-E1 Turbo
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old Nov 30th, 2017, 2:24 pm Thread Starter
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Im in the UK.

Mechanic claims he knows 2 people who can rebuild it for us. He's getting me a price tomorrow. As for getting a shock customised, I want to keep the electronic suspension. From what I have seen new shocks are around £500.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old Nov 30th, 2017, 6:53 pm
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The ESA motors are what generally fail first on the shocks. This was the response I got from the Beemershop when I asked about a rebuild:

"At this time we are not rebuilding those stock shocks. We find that spending money on a "price point" shock is not a good way to go because you are not making any improvements to the suspension.

Wilbers does not officially offer an ESA conversion for this model either, although I've heard of others piecing parts together to build an unauthorized conversion but of course this would have no warranty through the shock factory so I'd beware of this.

We are working with the company who actually designed your suspension (Tractive Suspension) to provide suspension replacement upgrades but they are in development stage at this time so it may be a few months before we see them. These shocks will have new damping motors installed which has been a problem on some of these older shocks.

Because of the aging electrical motors on the older ESA models, many customers are opting to install manually adjustable shocks on these models. The bike does not care if you remove the ESA, there will be no warnings on your display and all other functions will operate normally. The benefit to this option is you get far more adjustability in your damping (you currently only have three settings) and a more granular adjustment range in your preload adjust (you currently only have off, 50% and 100% preload and nothing in between). We have many manually adjustable shock options that I can go over if that interests you.

Thanks for getting in touch, but for now, none of the shocks companies offer an authorized approved ESA conversion, until Tractive releases theirs".

2009 K1300 GT
1984 Kawasaki ZX750-E1 Turbo
1990 Kawasaki ZX600R
2005 R1200 RT - gone
2008 Honda CBR1000 RR - gone
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 4th, 2017, 7:57 am Thread Starter
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I don't get it....How can it be that the shock absorber cant be repaired?

The bike has 35,000 miles on the clock. I have had a price of about £400 to replace the shock absorber with a used one.

But if the shocks only have a life span of 30,000 - 40,000 miles, a used one is surely not going to last very long.

It seems like such a simple problem; there is a leak on the shock. Is replacing the only option?

I do not want to get rid of the ESA with an aftermarket shock as I like to keep the bike as close to original spec as possible.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 4th, 2017, 9:35 am
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If you can find someone who can rebuild just the shock, go for it.

2009 K1300 GT
1984 Kawasaki ZX750-E1 Turbo
1990 Kawasaki ZX600R
2005 R1200 RT - gone
2008 Honda CBR1000 RR - gone
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 5th, 2017, 8:32 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadwarrior View Post
I don't get it....How can it be that the shock absorber cant be repaired?

The bike has 35,000 miles on the clock. I have had a price of about £400 to replace the shock absorber with a used one.

But if the shocks only have a life span of 30,000 - 40,000 miles, a used one is surely not going to last very long.

It seems like such a simple problem; there is a leak on the shock. Is replacing the only option?

I do not want to get rid of the ESA with an aftermarket shock as I like to keep the bike as close to original spec as possible.
Yes, it is odd right. Unfortunately, the stock shock absorbers on the bike are mediocre when new. The ESA feature is nice. When the shock unit leaks its oil, as many do at your mileage, BMW says buy a whole new unit at $$$$. Of course you can do that if you are rich and stupid. The shock itself can be rebuilt of course, and the ESA components reinstalled. Then, you have a like new, but still mediocre unit. Sometimes the ESA components fail, and for that you can also buy a new shock ($$$$) from BMW, or like me, go to ebay and buy a nice used one ($250 and self installed). Since I put so little miles on my 2008 K12GT, the replacement used one will probably last me, and I like being able to adjust from Sport to Comfort when I get tired of scaring myself. I'll be scanning ebay for a used front ESA unit soon. Not a fun installation job.

I understand that you would like to keep the original functionality with ESA. When my R12GSA rear shock failed (oil seal leak), I had it fixed by installing a higher quality Wilburs, shock reusing the stock ESA parts. It works great, and since I use the GSA with wildly varying loads (overloaded panniers and top case), I really needed ESA easy adjustment. I do not know if that option is available with the KGT front shock. If Ted at Beemer... says no, then its probably no.

Many people, realizing that the stock damper units are not very good, use the "opportunity" of a failing shock to upgrade to higher quality units, giving up the ESA for a better handling 300 kg, 150 hp missile. People on this board often comment on how high quality replacement shocks really tighten up the handling. Not inexpensive!

Pay your money, make your choice.

OPINION: If I were you, I'd get the stock shock rebuilt, as it is probably just a seal..and then ride until some other overpriced/under-designed time bomb part (ABS, Final Drive, Cam Chain...) fails.

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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 5th, 2017, 9:17 am
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Check with Race Tech in Corona, California USA. They rebuilt the ESA rear shock for my 2007 K1200GT.

Race Tech Suspension

See the following thread for more information about BMW shocks in general. Look for my posts with the detailed info. Don't stop at the first post, I posted later updates too:

http://www.i-bmw.com/showthread.php?t=15296
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 5th, 2017, 3:49 pm Thread Starter
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Im getting the shock removed and sent to Firefox Racing in Keighley, Yorkshire.

They advertise that they can rebuild the shock to better than new, so vs. a used unit that is an unknown quantity, I am going with the rebuild.

If anyone needs it, this is where its going...Firefox Racing | Official YSS Research & Development Centre & Supplier. I'll post a review after I get the job done.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 29th, 2017, 12:19 pm
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It comes down to the costs involved and the outcome. I went with Wilbers front and rear. The old ESA unit was removed and saved many lbs...that thing is big.

You go with what you feel comfortable with. And I'm guessing you want to rebuild.
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