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Thread: Day-to-day life with the wethead

  1. #91
    Registered User Emoto's Avatar
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    Has anyone tried higher wattage headlight bulbs? Stock is 55w. I see that 65, 70, and 100w bulbs are available. Of course, it would suck if the canbus turned off your headlights.
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  2. #92
    Hammam
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    Quote Originally Posted by EMOTO View Post
    Has anyone tried higher wattage headlight bulbs? Stock is 55w. I see that 65, 70, and 100w bulbs are available. Of course, it would suck if the canbus turned off your headlights.
    The instructions manual isn't very clear as to how many amps the Canbus will sustain. Is it 7,5 amps? Amps = watts divided by volts. So 100 W. divided by 12 V. = 8,3 A. Also, there may be a risk of burning the reflector inside the headlight. I wouldn't try it. But I would try the more expensive option of an HID kit, which has less power requirements (35 W.) for a much more powerful light.

  3. #93
    Registered User Emoto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hammam View Post
    The instructions manual isn't very clear as to how many amps the Canbus will sustain. Is it 7,5 amps? Amps = watts divided by volts. So 100 W. divided by 12 V. = 8,3 A. Also, there may be a risk of burning the reflector inside the headlight. I wouldn't try it. But I would try the more expensive option of an HID kit, which has less power requirements (35 W.) for a much more powerful light.
    I have been looking into various auxiliary lamps, and at some point will add at least one set in a driving beam pattern, and perhaps one in a fog pattern. They will almost certainly not be the BMW ones, as I think there are better values out there. HIDs may not be a great choice either, at least for those of us in populous areas, because the HIDs like to go on and stay on, not be popped on and off quickly/frequently, as I will need to do in order to be a courteous driver.

    However, having run higher wattage bulbs in a variety of headlights in a number of bikes without damage, it has been my experience so far that running a somewhat higher wattage bulb for the high beam is unlikely to cause problems, due to how long it is on, etc. I would expect that anyone running higher than standard wattage bulbs would check the housing and associated bits periodically to see if anything untoward is happening. The GS-W halogen headlight has what appears to be a glass lens, and the rest seems reasonably robust.
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  4. #94
    Prodaddy
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    Cruise control is a gift from God.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visian View Post
    Just rode home from the US Press Launch for the new R1200GS, LA to ATL in 4 days, with plenty of backroads in between.

    As I put together my thoughts for an article in BMW ON, I'd like to begin sharing impressions here, in a more timely fashion.



    There really are two pieces of news here, the new motor and the new GS. So I am going to break up my comments likewise.

    The new motor(cycle)

    Hop on the bike and you immediately think that it's much lighter than previous models, even though it's not. Turn the key, wait for the light show to subside, thumb the starter and man, what a sweet sound! It's Ducati-esque... a nasty little bark with just the right edge.

    Draw in the delightfully light-pull lever to disengage the new wet clutch and snick it (or clunk it) into first. As you release the lever, the bike moves out right now. The new throttle-by-wire system fuels the bike perfectly... not like the light-switch hyper-sensitive throttle on previous models.

    Run it up through the gears, and the shifting is still, um... clunky through 3rd gear. 9 times out of 10 there is a pretty big "blonk" as you shift from Neutral into 1st. But of course, it will get better as the miles pile up. Flicking the bike from side to side reveals the benefits of a full frame... this bike steers with the same super-precision that my HP2 Enduro has. Frame stiffness is way up and it takes just the lightest hint of countersteering to make the bike change directions.

    Compare to previous boxers, where it really doesn't make much sense to rev beyond 5k RPM, this motor is just getting going at 5k and pulls strongly to 8. It's redlined at 9k and the song is wonderful. You best be holding on real good.

    RT riders are going to love this motor. I fully expect it to do roll-on acceleration uphill, two-up, with luggage. The motor makes power everywhere. As I rode the Angeles Crest Highway toward home, I often found myself in the tight twisties in 5th gear, with no lag in power when rolling on.

    The new GS

    While the latest model hex and camheads do feature ESA, ASC and ABS, these are relatively new concepts to me, and were ones I am not quite so sure of yet. The ASC's ride modes include Rain (most intrusive at eliminating wheel spin), Normal, Dynamic (allows some spin) and Enduro (allows a lot of spin in dirt). Enduro Pro is optional via a jumper in the fuse panel under the seat. I need to get the bike to my dealer to enable that. More discussion of these features later, as I get used to them.

    As a contrarian, I almost never turn off ABS when riding off-pavement, finding that careful and balanced braking makes ABS useful in these riding conditions. The ABS on the new GS makes this even better, and is truly an assist when riding off-pavement.

    Some general riding impressions:

    • Clutch is *awesome* ... a huge improvement when feathering over rough ground. IMO, this is the biggest news in off-road performance. It's that good.
    • Well, the longer swingarm due to shorter/reconfigured motor is pretty signficant, too.
    • Well, the high air intake also solves another major weakness of previous models.
    • Better stability in sand, thanks to wider tires (10mm in front, 20mm in rear)
    • The throttle-by-wire setup eliminates the lightswitch-like on/off throttle of previous models, which makes it far easier to transit over rough ground.
    • The footpegs are really too high, and fold your legs quite a bit. And I am only 5'8".
    • When riding with the balls of your feet on the pegs, my size 9.5 boot rubs on the swingarm.
    • Air management is very good, but I bet the adjustable windscreen will break on the first significant get-off.
    • Popular accessories are going to be lighting, peg lowering, radiator guards.
    • Cruise control is a gift from God.


    In closing for now, I feel that BMW looked very close at the Ducati Multistrada in setting this bike's tone. While the bike doesn't have quite the horsepower of the Ducati, it has puh-lenty of power and is much MUCH better off-pavement.


    Heading toward home on the Angeles Crest Highway. Jeez, the air pollution in LA is bad!

    More to come... I look forward to your questions and comments, too.
    I guess the title should have been "As long as it works!" My cruise control has been malfunctioning almost since the day I got it. Taking it in this morning for the initial service, hope they can determine the cause. Also, agree with you about the pegs. Just bought and installed a new set of pegs from TwistedThrottle. A bit pricey, but oh so nice... P.S., I have a Grey one just like yours; beautiful color...

  5. #95
    Prodaddy
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    Proxxon 23954 8-Piece Pocket TORX Key Set

    Quote Originally Posted by Visian View Post
    Hooray... BMW has finally figured out that consistently-sized fasteners of the same type (e.g. torx vs allen) make life much easier when doing simple maintenance.

    Interestingly, on the R12GSW, it's now easy to get to the battery and hard(ish) to get at the air filter... the exact reverse of my 1150GS.

    The battery takes under 30 seconds to get at, and most of that time is spent opening your tools and finding the write torx tool. And there's even a small post for accessing the positive terminal (which is located inboard, relative to ground) so that jump starting is a cinch. Big auto jumper cable connectors are probably not going to fit in there, though.

    The air box/filter is a bit more fussy... 5 screws to remove the center panel on top of the fuel tank, and another 4 to remove the air box cover. At least the same torx tool can be used. With the forward facing air intakes, I see a future with many bugs sitting on top of the air filter, so perhaps some foam filter inserts are in order. I use these on my 1150 and HP2.

    For garage work, a set of t-handle torx drivers with long reach look to be a good investment. Might even get some for the road tool kit, since they're so much easier to work with than what comes in the stock tool kit.

    Oil filter change is a snap, since it is side mounted. You don't even have to remove the skid plate.

    However, you do need to remove the skid plate to drain the oil, but a judiciously drilled hole would fix that. The plate is held on with five bolts of the same size... what a concept! (I do see the need for an aftermarket skidplate if your riding demands something fairly sturdy. The mounting could use a little beef-up, too).

    Of course, BMW doesn't actually tell you how to drain the oil from the bike... great. Can't wait for a Haynes manual. Has anyone seen work of a factory shop manual?

    Here is one of the handiest tools I have, keep it in my rear bag all the time. Well worth the money...
    From Amazon.com: Proxxon 23954 8-Piece Pocket TORX Key Set

  6. #96
    Registered User Emoto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 162127 View Post
    I guess the title should have been "As long as it works!" My cruise control has been malfunctioning almost since the day I got it. Taking it in this morning for the initial service, hope they can determine the cause. Also, agree with you about the pegs. Just bought and installed a new set of pegs from TwistedThrottle. A bit pricey, but oh so nice... P.S., I have a Grey one just like yours; beautiful color...
    A number of people have had issues with the cruise control, and from what I have read on various forums, the fix is usually to replace the left side handlebar switch cluster.
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  7. #97
    Cam Killer marchyman's Avatar
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    I've recently noticed that mine is acting up. A left had cluster replacement may be in my future. Of course the issue comes and goes; it may be hard to demonstrate the problem. The set/resume lever sometimes does the wrong thing when pulled toward me. When cruise is active pulling the lever will sometimes deactivate cruise instead of reducing the set speed. When cruise is inactive pulling the lever sometimes does nothing instead of resuming at the previous set speed. When the lever starts doing the wrong thing sliding the switch to the off position and then back on will restore proper function for a while.

    I'll mention it to the dealer service department next time I'm there.

  8. #98
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    That was exactly the problem with my '10 RT. After they replaced the whole cruise control unit, they went back and replaced the handlebar switch cluster. That was the 3rd time they replaced the switch (for other reasons not associated with the cruise) and, finally, I got a "good" switch. I traded that bike in on a new '11, and, now the same switch is acting up in the form of not manually cancelling when the button is pushed - sometimes. Based on previous posts in this thread, I do believe it is heat related (turn signal problem) and will suggest that they heat up the switch with a hair dryer to see if they can duplicate the problem.

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