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If so, is there a way to prevent the problem, is there a way to know if the final drive is about to fail? Thanks
 

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Change oil often, check side play at rear wheel often, check for metal shavings on magnetic drain plug, touch wood......! I do all that but just found out today that my driveshaft is Kaput at 30,000 miles....Driveshaft No:3 on BMW's since 1992! :D
And my rear shock is leaking......Shock No:5 on BMW's since 1986! :D

But do the checks, it is a lot easier and cheaper to repair before you destroy it on the road.Any side play at the rear wheel is cause for concern.:thumb:
 

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Or buy an F800
 

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how long..........belts?????

bmw needs to get with the 21st century and go to drive belts. their final drive is costly to manufacture and offers no advantages over a belt.(and don't start with the argument about belts not being strong enough ---power equipment uses them and they withstand 450 lbs of torque). i think this may be a case of german pride and hard-headedness. i hope they read this..............
 

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billbeemer said:
bmw needs to get with the 21st century and go to drive belts. their final drive is costly to manufacture and offers no advantages over a belt.(and don't start with the argument about belts not being strong enough ---power equipment uses them and they withstand 450 lbs of torque). i think this may be a case of german pride and hard-headedness. i hope they read this..............
If they don't fail ...

No need to adjust

Consistent wheel base/geometry

Less likely to to take a rock or incur damage (I had a rock go right through a belt once)

I dunno, there are more advantages (and disadvantages too) but differentials have been pretty effective on cars and trucks for years and I do know belts and chains were tried on those and found to have significant drawbacks.

The $64,000 question ... why were the drive units notoriously so bullet proof until the past decade or so and why do the Japanese drive shaft units hold up better? I put 185,000 on a 1984 Yamaha Venture Royal and did nothing more than change the oil in the drive train every 25,000 miles.
 

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shotgun said:
Do all BMWs have final drive problems?

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If so, is there a way to prevent the problem, is there a way to know if the final drive is about to fail? Thanks
No, not all BMW's have final drive problems. K-1200LT and to a lesser extent, the GS seem to have the biggest issue of final drive problems (when referring to the classic "Brick" engine and drivetrain). Do a search here and you won't find many posts on final drive failures on the classic K-RS/GT. Shocks, headlight wiring, seals, clutch and fuel quick-disconnects are another matter!

I've got 104,000 miles on the original final drive, change oil regularly, use synthetic, and it's been problem free. I did replace the pivot bearings at 102,000 miles as they were getting notchy.

To test, put the bike up on the centerstand, grab the wheel at 3 and 9 o'clock, and rock back and forth ... there should be no movement. Repeat with hands at 12 and 6 o'clock.
 

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-CRASH- said:
The $64,000 question ... why were the drive units notoriously so bullet proof until the past decade or so and why do the Japanese drive shaft units hold up better? I put 185,000 on a 1984 Yamaha Venture Royal and did nothing more than change the oil in the drive train every 25,000 miles.
They are mounted in twin-spar swingarms.
If the Germans did this, they probably would have no rear drive problems either.
But as we all know, you can't tell the factory anything.
 

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Since we are talking final drive here I'll stick with this post....!
Any tips on replacing the front seal or the pivot bearings without the BMW "Special Tools"? Both kaput because of that vibrating driveshaft I'm sure. :teeth
I'm probably OK with the pivot bearings, did them once on my GS, but that seal.....! :confused2
That would save me a very long drive on one of the best riding road in the province......and one of the worst for cars in the winter....! :D
Thanks! :thumb:
 

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billbeemer said:
bmw needs to get with the 21st century and go to drive belts. their final drive is costly to manufacture and offers no advantages over a belt.(and don't start with the argument about belts not being strong enough ---power equipment uses them and they withstand 450 lbs of torque). i think this may be a case of german pride and hard-headedness. i hope they read this..............
They already run belts on the F series BMW's.
Im not sure about BMW however the newer HD belts are made with Kevlar which if you excuse the pun makes them pretty bullet proof! :rotf:
 

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h96669 said:
Since we are talking final drive here I'll stick with this post....!
Any tips on replacing the front seal or the pivot bearings without the BMW "Special Tools"? Both kaput because of that vibrating driveshaft I'm sure. :teeth
I'm probably OK with the pivot bearings, did them once on my GS, but that seal.....! :confused2
That would save me a very long drive on one of the best riding road in the province......and one of the worst for cars in the winter....! :D
Thanks! :thumb:
I can't speak to special tools for the front seal, but the swing-arm pivot bearings use the same tool as the final drive pivot bearings ... a socket with a window cut into it. I built this one myself using a cut-off tool. The big got-ya is breaking the existing pivot pins loose ... they are torqued in by a gorilla on steroids. If you round off the socket flats, you're seriously screwed, as the pins are torqued into the frame. I used a 2-foot cheater on my breaker bar and broke a socket trying to free them. I've heard of folks bending their 1/2"-drive breaker bars trying to break them loose.

 

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rhhall said:
I can't speak to special tools for the front seal, but the swing-arm pivot bearings use the same tool as the final drive pivot bearings ... a socket with a window cut into it. I built this one myself using a cut-off tool. The big got-ya is breaking the existing pivot pins loose ... they are torqued in by a gorilla on steroids. If you round off the socket flats, you're seriously screwed, as the pins are torqued into the frame. I used a 2-foot cheater on my breaker bar and broke a socket trying to free them. I've heard of folks bending their 1/2"-drive breaker bars trying to break them loose.

Funny, I just finished doing that today, used a cheap generic chineese 30mm socket on my Snap-on breaker bar and a 3 foot fork tube over it.....nothing broke.But I had a back up, just in case. But going farther in, the left bearing stud wasn't even screwed in all the way......must have missed BMW quality control.... :teeth Could be what made my driveshaft fail at such low milleage. :D
And I could probably have unscrewed the Clutch slave cylinder by hand.....another miss for quality control. :loco
So now I'm in for a Driveshaft, Rear pivot bearings, the Rear drive seal for sure, possibly the bearing, the Tranny output seal and the one at the Slave cylinder. And I haven't even dropped the gear box yet.....! :teeth
My engine main seal and clutch O-ring are not leaking, but I am going all the way in anyhow, just to make sure there is no more factory s......ups! :yeow:
Someone else on this site found out his starter was missing the O-ring seals.....! :D
I don't mind wrenching.....but not too impressed today.....! :( :eek:ldster:
 

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I arrived at the same result as Mr Hall for the bearing journals - cutting a window in a 30 mm socket. Works a treat. Note however, that BMW issued a statement requiring the use of loctite on the nut as it is only torqued to 43Nm. Subsequently, a heat gun and high pressure is needed to remove it - as I found out. Also, as some loctite will probably find its way onto the bear journal thread, both it and the corresponding thread in the driveshaft needs to be thoroughly cleaned or the torque wrench will give a false reading. I torqued mine to 7 Nm, but still had some play. Re torqued to 8Nm and all is good.
 

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I just checked the final drive play on my 07 K1200GT with 31,000 miles on it.
there is no play at the 3 and 9 o'clock position, but I have about 2 mm play on the 6 - 12 o'clock position.
I better check back with my dealer since the warranty runs out on the 21st of February this year.
 

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Yep, that is how the bearing journals are checked, as per my previous post. Not at 3 and 9 o'clock although if in need of serious adjustment, some play will be experienced here. Check at 12 and 6 o'clock is where you will first find movement. But on a 07 GT!!! haven't the Germans got it right yet! I had a Kawasaki 1300 back in the early '80s and put 100000km on it and NEVER touched the drive other than oil changes, and even those were not very regular... Maybe BMW should return to twin spar swing arms....
 

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:thumb:

Tips on removing/replacing the bearings please? I think there is something on ADVrider on that, all them GS's......! Just too tired from my Clutch O-ring job to try digging it out. :(

And to everyone...don't ignore that little bit of play, and check often for it, otherwise it may cost you a very expensive Driveshaft! And No...do not just retorque the pivots to remove the play, take the drive out and inspect the bearings. Only sold in pairs BTW, and not cheap!:(

Should I also mention "Driveshaft Phasing" for anyone removing their rear drive.....! :confused:

And anyone out there with some Viton O-rings for my clutch, please send me one, will pay no problem, can't seem to find any from my little place in the boonies. Or any sources in BC. Thanks! :bmw:
 

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I used a piece of 3/8" all-thread rod, some washers, and a couple sockets to press the bearing races out of the swingarm. The same rig can be set up to press in the new bearings as well. Be careful pressing the new races back in, they can get cocked and go in at an angle. The races are harder than the swingarm, and will make a nice gouge if this happens. Make sure you get them started straight with some light taps with a mallet.

The bearings weren't that expensive, as I recall. The GS guys will replace the bearing with a bronze bushing by Rubber Chicken Racing. I stuck with the bearing, the original lasted 98,000 miles, which is acceptable by my standards.

And of course, don't forget to lube all the splines.
 

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Needle bearings in final drive should last 40000 to 60000km before replacement. Any play in the needle roller should be able to be taken up with bearing journal re torquing. However it is a good idea to check the bearing for pitting if the mileage is getting up there.
 

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rhhall said:
I used a piece of 3/8" all-thread rod, some washers, and a couple sockets to press the bearing races out of the swingarm. The same rig can be set up to press in the new bearings as well. Be careful pressing the new races back in, they can get cocked and go in at an angle. The races are harder than the swingarm, and will make a nice gouge if this happens. Make sure you get them started straight with some light taps with a mallet.

The bearings weren't that expensive, as I recall. The GS guys will replace the bearing with a bronze bushing by Rubber Chicken Racing. I stuck with the bearing, the original lasted 98,000 miles, which is acceptable by my standards.

And of course, don't forget to lube all the splines.
Thanks....I do have a press, so should make it easy/easier.....! :thumb:
Bearing are not that expensive...well US $35.00, but it is all starting to add up for me..$$$$ :teeth
And yes on lubing the splines.....once I get my new driveshaft.......! :yeow:

Flyingkiwi....you are right on on the milleage......44,000 Km for mine. :wtf:
Which is more than I got from the original ones on my GS! :teeth

And here is a pic of the proper tool to check for play at any of those locations....those are getting cheaper, paid $25.00 for that one, here we go.....the Deflection Gauge! :)
Makes it easier to differentiate between play in the rear drive or just play at the pivot bearings. Also required to check rotors, wheel trueness,front end play,clutch components sometimes, etc....etc.....! :thumb:

 

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Phazed

Was glad to see you mention phasing. My '93 K1100RS rear U-joint failed and the subsequent damage forced me to replace the final drive (otherwise it would have been fine). When I removed the drive shaft and mated up the busted parts I noted that it was not phased correctly and have always believed that was what caused the failure of the u-joint.
 

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Y2K12RS said:
Was glad to see you mention phasing. My '93 K1100RS rear U-joint failed and the subsequent damage forced me to replace the final drive (otherwise it would have been fine). When I removed the drive shaft and mated up the busted parts I noted that it was not phased correctly and have always believed that was what caused the failure of the u-joint.
:thumb: :thumb: :thumb: I cannot be sure on my bike, removed the drive without even knowing about phasing......but the seal is leaking so I have to take the drive to the shop and have it checked properly and replace the seal. But I also found out the idiot that was last in there did not even tighten the left pivot pin on the swingarm at the frame ,or the clutch slave, so did he phase the driveshaft......????? :dunno:

BTW that bike was apparently previously owned by a BMW Technician on the Canadian West Coast......! :yeow:
I have to do a service record check with my VIN before I can point any fingers, but the BMW manual does not even mention phasing! I'm waiting for the Clymer, but don't think they do either! :wtf:

Me and failing BMW Driveshafts go back all the way to 1991......many more for others, just check ADVriders.....! :teeth :stir: :eek:ldster: :bmw:
 
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