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Old 27-10-2007, 07:12 PM   #6
glitch
Mapping the next ride...
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motorradrudi
Hi Pete,

I think, that'll become a very big big story!

Rudi
Hi buddy

Ohhh Yeahhhh
that'll be a Biggie !!
Started sorting through the pics of the first day (Milano--no riding yet) and there's easily 100pics worth posting just there... .
Guess, I better break it up into many small posts to keep the pics-per-page down somewhat, otherwise even those with quick net-connects will have to wait forever until everything loads up.
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Old 27-10-2007, 09:23 PM   #7
motorradrudi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glitch
Started sorting through the pics of the first day (Milano--no riding yet) and there's easily 100pics worth posting just there... .
Guess, I better break it up into many small posts to keep the pics-per-page down somewhat, otherwise even those with quick net-connects will have to wait forever until everything loads up.
I'll think you're in trouble!

Ciao!
Rudi
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Old 28-10-2007, 09:10 AM   #8
iffracem
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So.......
'
where's the write up?

c'mon... c'mon... you've been back long enough.
Europe didn't teach you any manners I see....

what's that? 6 weeks work to catch up on? yards to mow? bills to pay?
ooo pluleeeez... get with the program.

And where are the other reprobates, still in a Milano lockup for visually molesting the local ladies and excessive drooling in cafe's? Except for Art of course, he'd be locked up for drooling on scooters

C'mon, you can't tease us and not post words n pics.
Rudi's doin' all the work for ya!

Oh yeah, welcome back ya bastids... i guess
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Old 28-10-2007, 11:17 AM   #9
glitch
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Default The bikes...

As BiancoBlu, the hiring mob in Milano/ Italy, offered “any BMW you want”
we’d agreed on 1-2 GS650s and 3-4 GS1200s, depending on their stock at the time we showed up.

A simple choice, really…since we didn’t know what to expect and planning on backroad touring rather than superslab and main-roads (leave that to the tourists on sporties ), the GS’s were the obvious choice.
Another consideration was that the bikes had to be comfortable for a 38day-on-the-road ride; no time to waste on sore backs, wrists and the such.

What we had to take was what we were given:
“No other bikes available at the moment”.
“But I’ll get 2 more GS12s to you as soon as possible…next week, let’s stay in touch via SMS”.

Hmph….no other choice than to grab what they’ve had there, they had us over a barrel as we WANTED to get out of Milano, PRONTO !

A 2006/7 GS650 with 19.000km and OEM panniers/ topbox.
A 2004 GS12 with 70something thousand K’s on the clock, OEM panniers, tankbag and Givi Topbox
A 2004 R1150RT with OEM luggage all-round. Also 70odd thousand k’s on the odo.
A 2005 R1150R, 40 or 50 thousand on the clock, full OEM luggage and tank bag.
And the true shitbucket of the bunch, a 2001 R1100RT, OEM luggage, with just under 100.000km on the clock.:huh

10 days later, the R1150R and the R11RT were swapped in Martigny/ Switzerland for two 2007 models GS12s with around 17.000km each on the dial.
Sure, all were hire-hacks for all of their previous lives, but at least the 650 and 2 of the 3 GS12’s were fairly fresh bikes.

Between TimTim, Karel, Tim and I, we’d been talking on and off about our interests in possibly owning a GS12 at some stage…let’s see what came out of it.

The GS650 spooled the 8000km easily…the low, non-adjustable seat gave long-legged Goodie some grief at the start, but she got used to it after the first week.
Oil was checked occasionally, total use over the stretch under ltr., the new chain lubed regularly.
The tankbag seemed to be off a different bike (or some parts were missing, whatever), the seat-side flap was only tucked in between "tank” and seat, one of our first cable-tie fixes, as the bag started sliding off the bike after the first 50km.

There were some electric/ electronic gremlins; the high beam seemed to switch itself on/ off intermittently, the fuse for the heated grips blew for no apparent reason… apart from that, things were fine. The easiest on fuel, 4l/100km is excellent, particularly considering the terrain we were in and the flogging it got.

Tim took a liking to the 1150RT, a bike we were ultimately stuck with….he showed once more that ANY bike, even a heavy touring barge, can be punted across just about anything.
He loved the big fairing too, as things got cold-to-icy. Selfish bastard

Not a bike any of us would buy, but pretty good all-round…good front-end and front brakes, just quite heavy on the oil…which seemed to be everywhere around the left cylinder.

Tim's 1150 R was very badly fuelled, a huge ‘hole” between 4000-5000rpm made it a dog in uphill-overtaking manoeuvres, a constant worry when the straights are extremely short and there is no spare room to speak off.
Again, fairly heavy on the oil, as was the 2004 GS12 that Karel had.

A good 1/2ltr/ 1000km seemed to be standard…which came as a surprise, as none of our bikes at home uses ANY oil between regular oil-changes.

And they weren’t ALL long-suffering hire-hacks…the 2 later GS12s were 2007 models with fewer than 20.000 on the clock.:huh

The old 1100RT….hmmm….with nearly 100.000km she’d been flogged to death and back… wouldn’t spin past 4000rpm, had “the shakes” badly, heavily scored brake-discs and about 25mm suspension travel left both ends. :?
Sculled oil like an AlcoholicsAnonymous-crew drains gin after the Tues night meeting…
Shot head-bearings together with the sagged suspenders made for an…ahem… interesting ride, especially on those roads we were about to encounter.
Braking hard into sharp downhill-hairpins on some rough road-surface was an adventure all of it’s own…pucker-country fair and square.

The 2 RT’s also kept loosing parts constantly...if it wasn’t some body-panel or mirror; it was a complete (and still functioning, dangling by the cabling) rear light/ indicator unit.


Back to the 3 GS12s we finished up with after day10 of the ride…
Amongst the crew, we all own “big chookies” of some sort. A CapoNord, a DR650 and 3 V-Strom 1000s…riding a GS12 isn’t entirely strange then.



Let’s come to the good points first…as there are not too many.

Everyone LOVED the low grunt of the 12…there are GOBS of torque down low…between 1500-4000rpm.
Sensational… particularly in the really tight, slow stuff.
Just chug it through, no burning out clutches and hop/skip/jump here.
Front brakes are pretty good, too….not exceptional, but absolutely adequate.

What is exceptional though, is the front end!!

The Tele-Lever is a gem, the ability to brake laaaate and deeeep and still jam the bike UNDER BRAKES into a TIGHT hairpin, is incredible. The thing just stays down where it is, doesn’t want to stand up, no wobbles, no jerks, just whack it in and keep squeezing the front anchors…with feel…but firmly.
Another good thing is that the footpegs scratch first….rather than the “pivoting” experience of the centre-stand digging-in! :lol3

One word: MAGIC !!


Now to the rest of it….and that was the consensus, not just a personal opinion !
We later met some other GS12 punters, who all had at least some of the same quibbles with the bike.

On a walk-around, one thing sticks out…due to the lightweight tube frame being all one piece (even the rear footpeg-brackets are part-of-the-frame), any half-arsed tumble down the road will result in damage to the major component of the bike...the frame.
Even a bit of a bumpy slide-on its side will make this a write-off. No bolt-on subframes here, it’s all one part.

Hop on and get going….as sweet as what the engine is below 4000rpm, as rough and vibey and asthmatic does it get beyond that, what a bloody shame. :cry: :cry:
And it’s not just a little…it’s mirror-shaking bad.
Mirrors shouldn’t be the $10 kind on a bike like this, either… having 8 sets of headlights in my mirrors (with 4 bikes following) made me know, that everyone was there….and that was riding the “sweet” rpm- range.
With more traffic at the rear, the mirrors turned into a rock-concert- lightshow.

Ergonomics:
Somehow a major cock-up by BMW here ….the front perch is tilted forward, causing back-trouble even to those, who’ve NEVER had a problem before. Some hard braking into bends…and the family-jewels are as flat as pancakes.

There’s a high and low setting for the seat, we finished up with the front mechanism sitting ON TOP of the high setting (in effect, the seat was loose in the front)….with the rear clicked into it’s lowest possible setting,…even then it was a make-do.

Footpegs are too high (for road-riding, anyway) and force a fairly sharp knee-angle…for that kind of bike at least.

Meeting another owner in Herfied (our host at Gasthof Winkler/ Austria), who’s got a late 2005model GS12, we spent an afternoon at his uncles upholstery business in Hermagor, re-shaping Herfried’s seat to what it should’ve been ex-factory.

Compared to the lowly V-Stroms headlight, the “candles” of the GS are a bloody disgrace.
As is the rear-brake…there’s either NOTHING at all…or it’s a lockup.
One word: DANGEROUS!! The margin between nothing and lockup is as wide as a bee’s dick…
Got me into a few tight spots, which only the great front-end got me out of.

The switchgear:
It’s one of the first things I’d junk, those fuggen stupid indicator/cancel switches are impossible to work properly, particularly with thicker gloves, where one always hits another switch for something else in that overloaded switch-cluster.

Short, rough hits to the front-suspension make things feel pretty harsh…. as sweet as what things are on smooth roads…. when things get sharp, short and rough, the front-end likes to stutter and the wheel ends up bouncing around somewhat, to the extend of slightly “jumping out of track”.
Sure, the Telelever saves the day… but even after nearly 4 weeks it sometimes came as a surprise and there seemed to be no cure for it.

Shaftdrive “lag” and “snatch”… to cut it short, gimme a chain-drive any day !!:evil :evil
Things are sloppy and clunky, the side-stepping of the rear end when downshifting hard into tight bends is disconcerting and if coupled with compression lockups and/or rear-brake induced slides….nawww… it 's seriously WRONG !!

Luggage:
All our GS12’s had BMW panniers and BMW tankbags. All Topboxes were Givis.
The most practical and easiest to use items were the …..Givi Topboxes.

The OEM panniers have a (replaceable??…they'd better be!!!) aluminium-wrapped face-panel. One tiny scratch by a jacket-zipper….and it’ll be there forever.
No surprise, that all panniers (incl. those on the GS650) looked like they’d been through WW3 already….even on those 2 “new” 2007 models.
The fastening is fiddly-to-frustrating, the 5 locks/ latch-mechanisms to be worked each time are prone to failure….the more shit, the more can go wrong, KISS rules !!!

The OEM-tankbags are useless…when unzipping the rear to expose the filler-cap for fuelling, the whole bag has to be flipped upwards/forwards….which releases the front hook of the bag automatically…and the whole thing’s in the dirt a second later.

Zipping up the rear end of the bag back onto the “tongue” of material takes ideally 3-4 hands to hold/ tighten/stretch things to make the zip go back into place.

Am I done yet??
Not really:evil :evil … there’s a shitload of other, smaller items one could whinge about, above are only the major points.

The conclusion then comes as no surprise…all 4 of us have turned our backs to any possible GS12 ownership in the future, there are too many alternatives on the market, which, when seen as a package, are different but just as good, if not a better compromise than the GS12.

And for a LOT less money !!

Spending $5000 or more to fix the most annoying shortcomings of the GS would be a waste…spending half the amount on any of the competitors on the market would yield better results for far less input.

If there’d be a way to squeeze a Telelever front end into a Strom or Caponord, retain the slipper-clutch and chain-drive of those, add the BIG bottom-end-bang of the GS to the top-end of both the Capo or Strom…. keeping THEIR ergonomics, seats and switchgear, add better aftermarket (Givi/ HepcoBecker etc) luggage and a decent tankbag…
THEN we’re talking about a future-bike that'd make us prick our ears !!

Until then, we reckon the GS is nothing but a styling and design exercise for exactly that purpose…not for practicality, performance or user-friendliness.
My sympathies go out to anyone who believes the hype blindly and spends $20.000plus just to find out later what the GS should/ could've been...As TimTim put it aptly:
"If the GS comes at the same price of a DL-1000....I MIGHT, just might, re-consider...till then, they can shove it. I'll never spent 60% more on something that might be 5% better (considering that Telelever frontend )."


None of which distracted us the least from a ride-of-a-lifetime and a bucket- load of fun !!! 8) 8)
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Old 28-10-2007, 11:27 AM   #10
glitch
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iffracem
So.......
'where's the write up?
c'mon... c'mon... you've been back long enough.
Europe didn't teach you any manners I see....
:
Do something about it....

Quote:
Originally Posted by iffracem
what's that? 6 weeks work to catch up on? yards to mow? bills to pay?
ooo pluleeeez... get with the program.
Fine....job's YOURS !!

Quote:
Originally Posted by iffracem
And where are the other reprobates, still in a Milano lockup for visually molesting the local ladies and excessive drooling in cafe's? Except for Art of course, he'd be locked up for drooling on scooters
Visually molesting? pffft....
You've got no bloody idea
Rape and pillage, chased by customs of various countries, grand theft auto, 1001 traffic violations...and that's the start of the rap-sheet!


Quote:
Originally Posted by iffracem
C'mon, you can't tease us and not post words n pics.
Rudi's doin' all the work for ya!
Oh yeah, welcome back ya bastids... i guess
Rudi's doin' just fine, aye?
Mate....gotta do a major software upgrade first (early next week, Steve's giving us a major hand on that, a HUUUUGE THANKS there !!!), then things will start to roll, promise
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