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Thread: 2008 RT, am I getting the shaft?

  1. #1
    Cowboyatheart
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    2008 RT, am I getting the shaft?

    I have a 2008 RT. I Am the only owner.
    I couldn't ride it for one year, so the mileage is low.

    At 10,000 km I had the 10,000 km service.

    At 13,000 km I needed new tires and the front calipers needed to be rebuilt so they put on all new front brake stuff but not rotors(sp?)

    When I got the bike back after the break job, I noticed when coming to a slow stop that there would be grabbing letting go grabbing letting go.

    I asked the question on this forum, what could that be?

    Some other suggestions were that the brake pads need to be seated.
    I went on a 5000 km trip, thinking that issue would disappear. It did not.

    I took my bike in yesterday to get serviced for the 20,000 km service.
    I told them about the brakes, they phoned me today and said I have a warped rotor.
    They want over 500 bucks to replace, saying the part itself is $423.

    They also told me they can't tell if the other rotors warped until they replace the first one.

    So, my questions are:

    How come the mechanic wouldn't notice this when he replaced the brake pads and calipers? (I will also ask the BMW shop this question).

    How come this issue was not present before the new calipers and brake pads were installed?

    Is this a usual, or a typical thing that can happen on these bikes at such low mileage?

    Or my just being shafted?
    Neil
    Want to be happy for a day? Drink. Want to be happy for a year? Get married. Want to be happy for life? Ride a BMW!
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  2. #2
    Snowy
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    At 13,000 km I needed new tires and the front calipers needed to be rebuilt so they put on all new front brake stuff but not rotors(sp?)

    When I got the bike back after the break job, I noticed when coming to a slow stop that there would be grabbing letting go grabbing letting go.

    Your tire fell over on the rotor during your brake work! Happens alot on tire changes too! I avoid dealership maintenance at all costs, at least if I break it, I have someone to blame!!!!!

  3. #3
    RAINEY 187132's Avatar
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    Sounds like you're getting hosed. Can you tell anything by visually inspecting it yourself?
    Jason
    Grand rapids, MI
    2012 BMW R1200RT

  4. #4
    A bozo on the bus deilenberger's Avatar
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    A "shudder" (a better description of what you're experiencing I believe) is often caused by a change in the surface friction characteristics of the rotor. Not by "warping" (which is actually about impossible without physically wonking the rotor.) I also would wonder why the calipers needed rebuilding at such a low mileage (or is it kmage?)

    The bike sat for a year without being used? Was there any dampness where it sat? If so - the rotor/pad could have reacted with each other, causing a sticky spot on the rotor.

    There is also a real routine that should be used to break in the new pads in any braking system, consisting of repeated hard applications of the brake for short distances followed by a cooling off period before repeating it. If the shop/mechanic didn't tell you this - they did you a disservice. The new pads will out-gas to some extent for a while, and if used like normal (say riding fairly hard, coming to a stop and then holding the brake on) - can transfer material from the pad to the rotor in one localized spot on the rotor. This can also cause the shudder - for the same reason - difference in the friction on that spot on the rotor.

    What to do (short of replacing the rotor)? People have fixed this to a great extent by two things:

    1. Cleaning the rotor surface, including using sandpaper (400 grit aloxite is good), or a brake hone (made for just this purpose, and not inexpensive.) This is followed up by a good cleaning with some carb-cleaner type solvent (which leaves no residue behind.) 3M also sells a small kit meant to be used with an electric drill to clean/rough-up brake rotor surfaces, available in lots of auto-parts places.

    2. Using a more aggressive brake pad. One of the HH series from EBC comes to mind. I'm quite happy with how they work on my R12R. The front stock pads were nearing the end of their life (at 60,000 miles), and were becoming a bit grabby when I just came to a stop. The EBC pads were way less expensive then BMWs, and give a very smooth progressive feel to the brake combined with better gripping power. The more aggressive pad will be harder on the rotor (more wear), but it will also tend to clean the surface better then the relatively soft stock pads.

    The two combined have worked for a number of people who asked me what to do when experiencing this problem.. (I have a LOT of familiarity with the problem since K75S's love to do this for some reason, and I spent a lot of time trying to fix the problem on mine. Dunno why just the S - but it's fairly endemic on them.)

    The final option to consider is to replace the rotors - but if out of warranty and BMW isn't picking up the tab - I'd consider aftermarket rotors. Again, EBC is the company I'd go with. The front rotors for R1200xx bikes appear to be in the $150-170 range (per rotor). Even replacing both rotors is going to be less expensive then a single BMW rotor (and I would replace both so they match.)
    Don Eilenberger http://www.eilenberger.net
    Spring Lk Heights NJ NJ Shore BMW Riders New Sweden BMW Riders
    '07 R1200R (current ride) and some bimmers.. and a Porsche

  5. #5
    Cowboyatheart
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    Thanks Don

    FYI

    This pulsing happened right out of the shop after calliper and pad work. Smooth as silk before they did this work. When I bought the bike new it was smooth as well. And in both cases no one told me the brake pads needed special break in treatment.

    Ugh!
    Neil
    Want to be happy for a day? Drink. Want to be happy for a year? Get married. Want to be happy for life? Ride a BMW!
    www.TasteMoringa.com Smart Mix & XM3 Energy Drink are the puppies to view...IMO

  6. #6
    Registered User
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    Getting HOSED

    Quote Originally Posted by cowboyatheart View Post
    I have a 2008 RT. I Am the only owner.
    I couldn't ride it for one year, so the mileage is low.

    At 10,000 km I had the 10,000 km service.

    At 13,000 km I needed new tires and the front calipers needed to be rebuilt so they put on all new front brake stuff but not rotors(sp?)

    When I got the bike back after the break job, I noticed when coming to a slow stop that there would be grabbing letting go grabbing letting go.

    I asked the question on this forum, what could that be?

    Some other suggestions were that the brake pads need to be seated.
    I went on a 5000 km trip, thinking that issue would disappear. It did not.

    I took my bike in yesterday to get serviced for the 20,000 km service.
    I told them about the brakes, they phoned me today and said I have a warped rotor.
    They want over 500 bucks to replace, saying the part itself is $423.

    They also told me they can't tell if the other rotors warped until they replace the first one.

    So, my questions are:

    How come the mechanic wouldn't notice this when he replaced the brake pads and calipers? (I will also ask the BMW shop this question).

    How come this issue was not present before the new calipers and brake pads were installed?

    Is this a usual, or a typical thing that can happen on these bikes at such low mileage?

    Or my just being shafted?
    It sure sounds like they may have caused the rotor to become not straight.

    I would order aftermarket rotors and install them myself if you cannot get the shop to anti up $$$
    Dave

  7. #7
    Cowboyatheart
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    Thanks everyone. I am going to pick up my bike and get a second opinion from another BMW shop.

    I will also inspect myself to see if I can determine the real cause. I will let you know the outcome.
    Neil
    Want to be happy for a day? Drink. Want to be happy for a year? Get married. Want to be happy for life? Ride a BMW!
    www.TasteMoringa.com Smart Mix & XM3 Energy Drink are the puppies to view...IMO

  8. #8
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    Pad deposition is sometimes easy to spot and sometimes not. And you can't spot a warped rotor easily without measuring tools unless its pretty large.

    Caliper left to sit for a year, especially if having been ridden and put up wet or salted, may well either corrode at the piston or have fluid at the piston seal change to a gummy varnish, causing them to stick or behave oddly. This is normally a pretty simple fix needing just a basic caliper rebuild (seal replacement and cleaning) unless the corrosion is pretty extensive (which it can be).

    08s also had some variants re rotor and spacers plus there were allegedly some machining errors of the rotor mounting surface causing excess rotor runout...

    Brakes are pretty basic and there's not that much to check. But misdiagnosis of brake maladies is very common...

    Like Don, I use the EBC HH (front and rear)- good stuff.

  9. #9
    Cowboyatheart
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    I picked up my bike from the dealer yesterday. I asked them to show me which rotor they thought was warped. The mechanic said they didn't know which one was warped. They wanted to replace one and see if that fixed the issue, and if not, they would try the other rotor, by swapping it for the new one, and see if that made a difference.

    I was astonished.

    I asked him is there not some way to measure whether rotor is warped or not.

    They said they would need to take it in and measure the runout. Do I have 45 minutes to wait?

    I said no, not at this time. And took my bike.

    I used to have confidence in this dealer, no longer.

    I am now taking it to the other dealer to get a second opinion.

    Can you believe it!
    Last edited by nelliott; 09-29-2012 at 06:28 PM. Reason: Spelling
    Neil
    Want to be happy for a day? Drink. Want to be happy for a year? Get married. Want to be happy for life? Ride a BMW!
    www.TasteMoringa.com Smart Mix & XM3 Energy Drink are the puppies to view...IMO

  10. #10
    Ponch ponch1's Avatar
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    take it in where? I could mount a dial indicator on the bike and spin the wheel...
    My Motorrad
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  11. #11
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    Like Ponch said- a dail indicator is the tool. Mount to a fixed spot and read runout which if excessive might be the rotor or in a few cases, something else as a primary cause.
    Have you tired just using your brakes hard enough a few times- like 4 or 5 stops from 60-70 to 20 mph or so, fairly hard? Getting some moderate heat in the system sometimes resolves moderate cases of erratic pad deposition. Won't fix bad cases or warped rotor, of course.

  12. #12
    Registered User
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    Warped rotor

    I had a pulsing when using the front brakes from day one on my 07 rt. I asked the dealer, their response was always it wasn't bad enough to warranty, come back when it was. At around 40 k miles the abs went out. After the fix I have never felt it again. Seemed like too much of a coincidence too rule out the pump was causing the issue.

    Just my experience.
    Ron

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