R1200ST - to keep or not to keep - that is the question
I've enjoyed these discussion groups since I normally get so many experienced comments. Below is the history of my 2005 R1200ST which I like but has frustrated me recently and makes me somewhat nervous since I am planning to ride it from Vancouver BC to the Arctic Circle in Alaska this summer. So the question is should I continue to fix her or should I get a different bike. Below is a history I've written for a mechanic and I would like additional comments from this group.
Let me know what you think.
Bike history - I purchased the bike second hand in Chicago IL in 2007 with 15,000 miles and it is only occasional used with 20,000 miles today. The only changes the original owner did was to add Moto touring lights and a new exhaust system. When I got the bike I added a wiring harness for a Gerbing heated suit and a harness for a Garmin GPS. The bike is always garaged, I do all the required maintenance and in late 2009 I had a full 20,000 mile tune up done.
Normally the bike was very reliable but around 2010 I had a number of issues. I noticed the Moto touring lights had stopped working properly and were shutting off prematurely. They were wired to the turn signal cancellation switch which is a technique no longer used. I took the bike to a BMW mechanic who was an authorized Moto light distributor while living in Houston Texas but he could not properly fix it - the lights would continue to turn off by themselves. I continued to use the bike and then the starter failed and required replacing which I understand is not a common problem. A few months later I noticed the bike would not run completely through the diagnostic start up procedure and the brake failure light would stay on (blinking) which prevented the power brakes from working. Many sources said a weak battery could be a problem but my battery was new. I then took the bike to a racing mechanic who direct wired the touring lights to the ignition switch with an on/off toggle switch which allowed them to work properly and I no longer had the brake failure light staying on. Now just 4 to 6 months later after moving to the Philadelphia area I have the neutral light not working properly which is preventing the bike from starting and I'm told I need to replace the Gear Position Sensor by a dealer which is a major job (up to 10 hours of labor). All these problems came within an 18 to 24 month period and I wondered if there is/was a common electrical problem, if some of the people who worked on the bike maybe did not do the repairs properly or my bike is turning into a lemon.