concerned about BMW reliability - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2008, 5:50 pm Thread Starter
 
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concerned about BMW reliability

Hi folks,
I ride an '03 hayabusa - it's a great bike, but it does more in the top-speed, power and acceleration arena than I need (or indeed can make full use of) -- and at the same time, I recon it doesn't do enough in the ergonomics and touring arena. Thus: should I consider a BMW K1200RS or an R1200GS (my brother rides an r1200gsa -- off-road touring together might be a new motorcycling activity for me)

Quite some different choices there, I know...and I'll need to take both out for a test ride before I make any decisions. (Both BMW's would set me back another 20-40.000 danish kroner 4.5 kroner = 1 us.$).

BUT! I keep reading scary stuff like, sudden loss of power assisted breaking, loss of final transmission (shaft drive), seizing front bearings (k12s), etc. The only remotely major thing I can recall from my busa forum is a burst chain.

Couple that with the comments of some of the local mc-mechanics: 'BMW wear out: after 60.000 kilometers you'll need to replace the clutch and the real wheel bearing', 'to replace an alternator you need to disassemble pretty much the entire bike', etc etc (some of the mechanics repair Suzuki and BMW (police)).

So -- please BMW-folks: please allay my fears and convince me to do what me brother tells me I will do eventually: swap my fast, reliable jap bike for a bimmer.

Soren - Denmark
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2008, 6:09 pm
 
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Funny I should come upon this thread. I spent three hours this afternoon at the local Suzuki dealer test riding what could be the eventual replacement for my old "flying brick." While I love the style and ride of the Bimmer, I am frustrated with it (it is in the shop for the third time in as many months)!
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 2008, 11:23 pm
 
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Bmw riders put more miles on their bikes than any other marque. I think they are more reliable than other bikes. Do they occasionally have issues? Yes. As do all manufactured items.

Final Drive- mostly seems to be caused by using non-factory approved oil, overloading the bike, and sustained high speeds (twenty plus hours).

EWS- is a problem that bmw is recalling. Just had mine replaced under warranty today.

Brake Recall- high speed, prolonged travel could cause bubbles. Recalled and fixed.

They aren't perfect but I think they are the best bikes on the road. I previously owned three Hondas and had electrical issues on all of them and overheating issues on two. Dealer was WORTHLESS every time.

I'd rather have an EWS failure than a cracked frame on a ZX14 (currently being recalled).
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 2008, 2:34 pm
 
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Cool I may be wrong, but...

Bimmers are cars,
Beemers are bikes,
and,

Beamers are bozos who drive with their bright lights or fog lights on in the daylight.

Chuck V (2008 R1200RT - silver, the sorta FAST color.)
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 2008, 3:42 pm
 
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Reliability

Find a cage or bike forum where reliability and maintenance problems aren't the main theme or topic. You won't find one.

I run my K bike and previous R bike as hard as my Jap bikes in the mountains and (knock on wood) I've never had serious problems in several years of riding.

The most popular bike out there (HD) has more problems than parts on the bike. DUCK....incoming!!!
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 2008, 9:07 pm
 
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I love my K75S, would consider a 1200 and have been looking for issues with this type/model to quiet my reservations.

As an old broke-down diesel mechanic I really like hardwear that can go the distance.
BUT transmission failures! http://www.bmwk1200s.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5276
You can find more here and at other 1200 forums and at BMWMOA.
WHY? Poor alignment when the trans case was machined? Or more likely the sourcing of cheap bearings from China or India. I really don't know but will ask the next time I am at a local BMW dealer. As an old gear-head I might be able to squeeze info out of a service manager. *shruggs*
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 2008, 9:21 pm
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckV
Bimmers are cars,
Beemers are bikes,
and,

Beamers are bozos who drive with their bright lights or fog lights on in the daylight.

Chuck V (2008 R1200RT - silver, the sorta FAST color.)
I stand corrected - I used to own a Bimmer; Now I am a Beamer that rides a Beemer!
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 17th, 2008, 7:55 am Thread Starter
 
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thanks...

thanks for your replies.

Ranger82: "Find a cage or bike forum where reliability and maintenance problems aren't the main theme or topic. You won't find one." Actually, I frequent www.extremebusa.com and theres not a lot of discussion about reliability issues - perhaps, its because the forum has a particular focus: mod's.

I read somewhere, that the read wheel on the k12rs (which is my most likely BMW-K choice) is offset by 5 mm relative to the front wheel, to accommodate asymmetries in the bikes construction -- I'm no engineer, but that sounds like suspect. Is it true?

Any thoughts on reliability K12RS compared to R12GS ??
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 17th, 2008, 11:31 am
 
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The KRS rear wheel being offset is true. I don't have any worthwhile info on reliably between a RS versus a GS.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old Jul 17th, 2008, 1:10 pm
 
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Rear wheel offset is a non-issue.
Norton did it back in the '60s with no ill effects.
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