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High mileage a problem for used?


BrotherMotif

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BrotherMotif

Hi all, 

I know RT users rack up high miles, but how many miles would cause suspicion when buying used? I saw a 2014 rt with nearly 70k miles on it at a dealership in Chicago but a pretty tempting price. 
 

I’ve been out of the BMW loop for a little while and could use some feedback. Yes, there’s always a risk when buying used. I don’t mind putting money into vehicles if it’s worth it. Heck, I just dumped a lot of money into my 2005 Subaru. I just prefer to avoid the engine exploding as I leave the lot.  

Currently own a 2013 Triumph Trophy and miss the tele-lever front end of a bmw. I had a ‘96 r1100r for a few years but wanted more coverage for long trips. Looking into wetheads for the tech convenience and style. 
Thanks in advance. 

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A friend has an '04 boxer R with over 200,000 miles and going strong;  another friend just sold his '15 boxer RT with 115,000 miles on it and going strong. Both have been regularly serviced.

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realshelby

My 2014 only has 53,000 miles. Which isn't exactly low, but if not for Covid I would probably have 70K on it too. It seems the 2014 and newer RT's are holding up very well and 100K is very common on them. Really don't hear of big problems very often compared to previous generations. I would be unafraid of 70K at the right price especially if I were not a high miles per year rider. 

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I don't think 70k on a 14 is bad at all, the bike should be fine for another 70k if the proper maintenance has be done.  But I would consider the cost to replace the suspension, after market is the way to go there.

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BrotherMotif
5 minutes ago, strataj said:

I don't think 70k on a 14 is bad at all, the bike should be fine for another 70k if the proper maintenance has be done.  But I would consider the cost to replace the suspension, after market is the way to go there.

Could you provide a little more details please? I’ve never had to replace suspension before. Most I’ve had to replace are dust gaskets. Thanks!

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45 minutes ago, BrotherMotif said:

Could you provide a little more details please? I’ve never had to replace suspension before. Most I’ve had to replace are dust gaskets. Thanks!

Well shocks wear out, and 70K if they have not been replaced, are probably in need.

 

It is expensive to replace.

 

It can be less so if you just use a good manual adjustable shocks but still a big expense.

 

Shocks age out and most riders don't notice until it is really bad.  It is a gradual thing and hard to notice but when replaced it is like a new bike.

 

I did not wear out my K1200LT shocks but got into a group deal and replaced them with Hyper Pro and it turned that Pig In Lipstick into a dance Queen.  High grade shocks transform any motorcycle or even cars for that matter.  What is on there is "good enough" to meet manufactures needs and meet a reliability time period and then all bets are off.  

 

Ted Porter @ The Beemer Shop is the shock guy and while not cheap he is a master at getting your shocks replaced and set up for what you want.Too many options and choices to list.  He also can help in just a manual shock if you want to go that route and there is nothing wrong with a manual adjusted shock at all, still better then a stock one set up for all riders, verses a shock built for you. 

 

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I guess it depends,....you might not want my '06rt with 147k as I don't do the recommended maintenance when it's recommended and I skip some of the stuff that BMW recommends, but, it's still going.;)  Gets ridden every other week, 100 mile round trip daily commute for work.

 

It woulda been traded in for the '19 GSA but the dealership said they'd likely not sell it and just use it for parts,........I'm not one to watch a perfectly good vehicle be parted out, so I kept it and continue to ride it.

 

So,.....it depends.  Since you can't see the insides, does it run good, does it shift good, do all the electrics work?  If the gut says yes, buy it, if the gut says no, don't buy it.

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Suspension....It's possible if the shocks are factory originals, they might need to be replaced as others mentioned......but they might not either.  The 2014 has 3 shock settings.  I would put it on the stiffest setting and ride it.  See what you think.  I forget the setting names.  It starts with soft for the gentle ride.  That was too soft for me when the bike was new.  I would be more concerned and would want to check out a few other things.  Do the ABS brakes work as designed, engine compression, brake rotor thickness as they have a minimum, all the electronics work, water pump not leaking, alternator putting out 14+ volts.  

 

I suspect there are likely no issues on 70k and likely not any surprises coming, but I would check those things even if the bike only had 10k.  My 14 has not had any issues other than it eats batteries about every 3 years due to the heat where I live.

 

If you get serious about buying it, post up here and someone with real knowledge might volunteer to meet you and help you with details.

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BrotherMotif

Update:

Dealer performed the 66k maintenance. New front tire. Bike has all the options for a 2014. 
I’m not seeing any obvious flags. Am I missing something? 
Will be doing a VIN check as well. Not expecting much, but it can’t hurt. 

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My 2014 RT went 100,000+ miles with only the 12K services done by the dealer.  I really loved that bike but the 2022 just tugged at me when I saw it in Pearl White.

 

No other problems.

 

Same with my 2006.

 

Currently on a 2022.   First 12K has been flawless, of course.

 

AD

 

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BrotherMotif

Update 2: VIN check looks good. There's a recall on that year, but that's not a big deal for me. Looks like I'll need to find some time for a test ride.

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Have seen similar questions from prospective buyers, and have answered them.  Every purchase decision is personal, and only you can decide what's "too many miles" for your maintenance pocket book.  Theoretically, the higher mileage on a bike the greater the risk of it requiring repair (stating the obvious), so it's a trade off.  All I'll say is don't overpay for a high mileage bike.  Know the market, look nationally for actual bikes on sale, as well as the blue book.  In my experience, when I'm selling a bike, every mile is a calamity, but when buying, all those miles are nothing, "... hey, it's almost as good as new, these BMW's run forever ...".🙄  (And, forgive me if I offend anyone:  Never, EVER trust the word of a salesman unchallenged, without qualifying his/her statements.)

 

I put out a couple of posts to prospective buyers which may interest you.  The first specifically addresses the 2014 (i.e. make certain those recall services were completed).  

 

https://www.bmwlt.com/threads/first-post-are-these-miles-too-low.193517/post-1990719

https://www.bmwlt.com/threads/which-rt-year-is-the-best-to-buy-what-to-look-for.192227/post-1976343

 

(Disclaimer: I'm nobody special.  There are more experienced riders and wrenches on this forum, so take my advice with a grain of salt.)

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We just semi-retired our 2007 RTs with 90k and 100k miles respectively.  I wouldn't hesitate to ride them locally, and they are still performing more or less as designed.  Presumably with repairs they could make 200k miles, but how much repair are you going to do on a bike that's only worth $2k -$3k?  They have developed a few minor niggles (one has cruise control out, and the other has an intermittent gear indicator) and we have had a couple of major repairs:  a drive shaft and a final drive.  They are at the point where between age, reliability concerns, and advancements in newer models, we replaced them... we still have them but are primarily riding our newer GS's.   Your's, being a wethead, would have less age and less concern for advancements in newer models.  But with those miles I would ask yourself your use and your tolerance for riding a potentially less reliable bike.  Yours also has more value and might justify more in repair costs.  If price is your main thing, and this gets you in, maybe worth it.  But, I would say you can find a lower mile bike in the same age range for a good price, based on my recent (this spring) searches.  For example, I saw a locally available 2014 1200 GS with 30k miles for about $12 k, IIRC.  Cycle Trader is your friend.    

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I think Jan hits the mark pretty squarely.

 

1) What are your intentions with this bike?  If it's just to get your feet underneath you, do some day riding, you're probably OK with a higher mileage bike.  Depending, of course, on the condition, service history, and so forth.  Buy older, for low $$$, and get your feet wet.  (Don't overspend on an older, high mileage bike,  'cause you'll probably selling soon.  A bike that's too old, maybe over a decade old, may net you a very low $$$ return, even if it rides pretty nice, due to lack of parts and service support issues.  That's just the market.)

 

2) If you're really hoping to do some longer distance, multi-day rides, you don't want to be hung up, towing a bike, or leaving it someplace for service in 3 weeks or 3 months, and flying home.  You can mitigate that risk on an older bike through increased maintenance, i.e. going beyond just routine, recommended maintenance, but you can't eliminate the risk entirely.  (Then again, guys on this forum go on week long, 1500 mile trips with older bikes on this and other forums, without a worry in the world ... ahhh ... most of the time. 😏)

 

3) There are probably better deals on the market, than what you're looking for.   ALL of these BMW's look shinny and pretty.  When I went shopping the criteria was "specs only, any Wethead year, any color, low mileage, ignore the pretty".    (Yeah, so then I bought a pretty red one from a pretty BMW saleswoman, 1000 miles away.  🙄😖)

 

Good luck with your search.  You're entering the end of riding season for 2/3's of the USA, so there should be great bikes out there available at a discount.  Look around, some.

 

👍🍻

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I'm lost a bit.

 

Why would a high mileage bike, just because of mileage, leave you stranded?  I'd have no issues with doing a multi day, many mile ride on my minimally maintained '06rt with 147k.  She doesn't leak, she starts every time, shifts through the gears and the only thing that doesn't work is the little red light showing the cruise is active (cruise works).  I do park the bikes in my garage, but they spend half their time in the weather.  Since my commute is 50 miles, bikes are 12 hours a workday in the weather, almost every workday of the year.

 

High mileage paranoia, I think, is just that, a paranoia.  Heck, five years ago I bought a 1989 truck that "showed" 220k but was unknown mileage as 220k was when the odometer stopped.  The day I purchased it, and drove it home, I would have had no issues driving it anywhere........and it looks like a very used worn out 89 truck.

 

If I were in the market, my gut would tell me to get it or not to get it and if any of you have read my posts on how I buy vehicles, I have never test ridden a bike I bought and rarely test drive a cage,......and yet, somehow,.....I've never been stranded.

 

That bike in the original post is only at just under 9k miles per year,.......are bikes "less" reliable for hitting the high mile numbers than cars?,.......I don't think so, I think the biggest paranoia is that people don't routinely see high mileage bikes and most deem bikes as a "pleasure" transportation mode.

 

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I think age plays a bigger part in potential reliability issues than mileage, just due to electrics and wiring. Other than that, vet each vehicle up for consideration.

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See, there ya go, different opinions, based on different life experiences, and, well  ....

... maybe some simple paranoia, too.   

 

(Hey, if ya get upside the head with a 2x4 often enough, those trips to the lumber yard can be emotionally traumatic!  🙃😁)

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I think Hosstage is right. One of my closest friends has a lot of years on him, but pretty low mileage as in never exercises.  He voted for Biden so I am positive he has a wiring issue.  OK I just made that up.  Nobody I call a close friend voted for JB

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1 hour ago, Skywagon said:

I think Hosstage is right. One of my closest friends has a lot of years on him, but pretty low mileage as in never exercises.  He voted for Biden so I am positive he has a wiring issue.  OK I just made that up.  Nobody I call a close friend voted for JB

Racist, biased, SOB!!   (Oops, wrong thread!  🤣🤣🤣)

 

Yeah, that mileage thingy is a sonnofagun.  Just ask Brandon. WAY too many miles .... 😏

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BrotherMotif

Update: the bike clearly showed its mileage but the core worked well. The aftermarket seat and exhaust were not good, in my opinion. 
It looked like the owner certainly got his money's worth out of the bike. 
But thanks your help, I noticed one of the shock boots was beginning to fail, and that was it for me. It left me wondering how much I'd have to put into the bike. 

I'll keep looking. There's plenty out there. 

 

 

RightShock-2014-70k.jpeg

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2 hours ago, BrotherMotif said:

Update: the bike clearly showed its mileage but the core worked well. The aftermarket seat and exhaust were not good, in my opinion. 
It looked like the owner certainly got his money's worth out of the bike. 
But thanks your help, I noticed one of the shock boots was beginning to fail, and that was it for me. It left me wondering how much I'd have to put into the bike. 

I'll keep looking. There's plenty out there. 

 

 

RightShock-2014-70k.jpeg

That's a leaking front fork seal, not a failing shock.  With BMW's cantilever suspension, the front shock is mounted behind the forks, on the "A" tree (or whatever they call it).  I don't believe that's an expensive fix, and not an uncommon problem.  Someone with more experience will probably chime in, but if I recall correctly, that seal can pretty much be pried out and replaced, without much else, unless maybe the upper fork is scored.  

 

But as you said, there are a lot of other available bikes out there, and I wouldn't be selling mine with oil or fluids dripping - anywhere.  That's an unnecessary red flag IMHO.

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On 9/19/2022 at 4:32 AM, strataj said:

My right folk seal on a 14R1200RT leaked at 44,000 miles, it was an easy change out. 

Maybe @BrotherMotif ought to go take another look at the bike, drop the offer $1500 (or 25%) due to ... unspecified mechanical issues you found upon inspection.  Probably wouldn't work, 'cause they'll fix that seal for you if you ask, pretty darn quickly.  I don't know what their price was, but it's Chicago, almost October, and they're gonna own that bike for another six months if they don't find someone to sell it too.  Like, right now!

 

It's a good time to make a low-ball offer.  All they can do is laugh at ya.

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