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You all are making me nervous


bete

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Will take deliverey of my new to me 04 1150rt Tuesday. After finding this sight I,m worried that I bought a bike thats going to be in the shop all the time. Do these really break down that much?. I,ve rode Japanese bikes for years with out really ever having a big problem. bete.

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Do these really break down that much?.

 

No.

 

Us owners are just a bunch of niggling whiners. We overstate minor problems, and act like they are going to end the world. We turn a couple bikes having similar problems into OH MY GOD THEY'RE ALL GONNA BLOW UP. Take the entire internet with a grain of salt.

 

Give the bike a good once over when you get it. Familiarize yourself with the maintenance schedule, learn to do stuff yourself because you'll find problems sooner and be able to fix them when/ if they arise. You got a good bike.

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russell_bynum
No, they don't break down that much and no, they're not as reliable as a Honda.

 

+1

 

An extended warranty (if you can get one) would be a good way to ease your worries.

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Will take deliverey of my new to me 04 1150rt Tuesday. After finding this sight I,m worried that I bought a bike thats going to be in the shop all the time. Do these really break down that much?. I,ve rode Japanese bikes for years with out really ever having a big problem. bete.

 

Nope, you'll be fine and pleased. I'm on my 4th Beemer. Put many, many miles on each. Only once did any of them "have" to go in the shop and that was my fault.

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The thing about these boards is that they are where people come for advice on fixing problems so that is mostly what you see. To put the number of reported problems in a little perspective, we have 14,600 members of which about 2000 are active at any one time. Most of our 'regulars' are high-mileage riders. There are several members here with over 100,000 problem-free miles on their bikes.

 

Not as reliable as a Honda but still pretty darn good.

 

Andy

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I feel your pain. I've gone through the same concerns.

 

http://tinyurl.com/33mrwv

 

In my case, I got a bike with no service records that ran poorly and had to figure things out as I went (with the help of this board, the net, the service CDs and Haynes and Chilton). Mostly just routine maintenance, but a lot of little things have gone wrong along the way (stripped screws, busted sight glass, stripped head on FD fill bolt, etc). The latest being my speedo assembly falling apart.

 

I haven't put enough miles on to speak to long-term reliability, but I haven't found the bike as easy to work on as I'd hoped. That said, I paid $6700 for it, and I love the comfort, looks, acceleration (at highway speeds anyway), luggage options, and suspension.

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Will take deliverey of my new to me 04 1150rt Tuesday. After finding this sight I,m worried that I bought a bike thats going to be in the shop all the time. Do these really break down that much?. I,ve rode Japanese bikes for years with out really ever having a big problem. bete.

 

Said the same thing last year.

 

Not as reliable as a Honda but a lot more fun.

 

Wrench your own and save a bunch of money.

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Can’t leave out the vanity factor. It is a very common experience for passers by, when on the RT, to give the thumbs up and say “niiice bike!”. I never get enough of that..

 

Just my grain of salt. R

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I have two BMW's and an old Honda 350. Could someone enlighten me to the reliablity of Honda's you refer to? Exactly which Honda's, and how many out of the total are capable of getting over 100,000 miles without major service?

 

Thanks.

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Can’t leave out the vanity factor. It is a very common experience for passers by, when on the RT, to give the thumbs up and say “niiice bike!”. I never get enough of that..

 

Just my grain of salt. R

 

Ditto on that.

 

I've got a red '04 RT and it's VERY common for people to say "NICE BIKE" (and honestly a majority of them have been women).

I was stopped in a rest area on the way back from the International Rally when an elderly gentleman that I had been running with said: "That's the most beautiful bike I've ever seen!"

 

I bet you wouldn't hear that all the time on a Honda!

 

LOL

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Silver Surfer/AKAButters
Can’t leave out the vanity factor. It is a very common experience for passers by, when on the RT, to give the thumbs up and say “niiice bike!”. I never get enough of that..

 

Just my grain of salt. R

 

+1! I never had any vehicle that got more positive commnents than my 1150RT, and I've had some nice vehicles. This one seems to be a real head turner.

 

BTW-This is my second "troublr free" BMW motorcycle.

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I have two BMW's and an old Honda 350. Could someone enlighten me to the reliablity of Honda's you refer to? Exactly which Honda's, and how many out of the total are capable of getting over 100,000 miles without major service?

 

I don't keep up on all of the new bikes, just the ones that interest me, but the ST1100, ST1300, Goldwings (1100, 1200, 1500, 1800) just to name a few. Any of the bikes from the 70's don't come close to reliability as the ones today, but the few honda's I had in the late 70's, 80's and 90's were bullet proof.

 

And as for my 3 BMW's, (K100, R1100RT, R1150RT) they have been just as reliable. And much easier to service than any other bike I have owned. If you learn to do your own regularly scheduled maint. (save you a ton of money, and very simple on your bike) you will appreciate the bike that much more with the money you are saving. I am sure you will be very pleased with your bike, and chances are it will be trouble free.

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Will take deliverey of my new to me 04 1150rt Tuesday. After finding this sight I,m worried that I bought a bike thats going to be in the shop all the time. Do these really break down that much?. I,ve rode Japanese bikes for years with out really ever having a big problem. bete.

 

Relax...

I have an 05 RT with 22,000 miles and it's not uncommon for me to go days at a time without a breakdown.. thumbsup.gif

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Will take deliverey of my new to me 04 1150rt Tuesday. After finding this sight I,m worried that I bought a bike thats going to be in the shop all the time. Do these really break down that much?. I,ve rode Japanese bikes for years with out really ever having a big problem. bete.
As people are mentioning, you are getting a distorted view here. You can find an Internet forum on most any product and mostly discussed are problems. But the percentage of overall problems on most of them is exceedingly small. Unfortunately unlike cars, there is no objective reliability data on motorcycles.
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One more vote in favor of BMWs here. thumbsup.gif

 

As a couple of others have said, people mostly come to this section of the site to get help with problems, so that's why you're seeing them. Also, people want to know how to avoid problems or how to do their own maintenance.

 

I've had an RT that I sold with 127,000 on the clock and NO issues and now am on an R with 78,000. (I only sold the RT because I didn't like the color. dopeslap.gif and should have just repainted it.)

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Relax...

I have an 05 RT with 22,000 miles and it's not uncommon for me to go days at a time without a breakdown.. thumbsup.gif

 

That's because you use that trailer with the connected odometer gizmo lmao.gif

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I was one of the earlier members here, and I've said this a thousand times. We don't complain about what keeps BMW's from being good bikes. We complain about what keeps them from being perfect bikes.

 

I owned an RT for close to 90,000 miles. Loved it to pieces. Took great care of it and it took great care of me. Did NOT treat it like a Honda.

 

This time around I thought I'd try a Yamaha FJR 1300. So I started spending a spare moment or two on one of the Yamaha boards. Holy Cow! They're complaining about:

 

Ticking: Apparently a lot of the bikes had valve guides that wore out prematurely (as early as 5K in some cases) causing a loud ticking noise.

 

Ignition Switches: The wires just fall out of them and leave you stranded in the middle of BFE.

 

Surging: Not the little back and forth rocking that BMW owners used to call surging. We're talking Urban Cowboy Mechanical Bull surging. Seems that Yamaha eliminated one of the sensors in the '06/'07 models and some of them buck like they've got 8 seconds to toss you.

 

Altitude craziness: Another eliminated-sensor issue. This time it causes bikes to run like crap at altitude. If you shut the bike off and restart it, the existing sensors reset their "zero" to the new altitude and all is fine until you change altitude again.

 

Loose Steering Head Bearings: Seems no one in Japan knows how to set them correctly. They come loose and get looser with time. The dealer PDI should catch this, but they don't do anything about it. Once you have taken delivery, it becomes a "wear" item and you have to pay to have it corrected. Lovely. Solution seems to be to strip the whole front end of the bike and replace the individual balls with a set of tapered Timken bearings. $40 and 6 hours of YOUR labor, IF you're good and have the tools.

 

Overly sensitve ABS: Damn thing comes on WAAAAY to early. It also cycles about 1/3 as fast as the BMW system, so braking over a series of stutter bumps means it's activated the whole time and you're going to miss your desired corner entry speed.

 

Saddlebags Fall Off: If the dealer PDI guy doesn't Loctite the screws that hold the saddlebag locks onto the bags, they back off, fall out, then the bags fall off. About $600 each.

 

Rear Trunk Failure: The mounts used to crack regularly. They stiffened them. Now the trunks are cracking. Can't even get a trunk for the '07. They're on terminal hold. Good time to buy a Givi. But if you wanted the Yamaha trunk, you're SOL.

 

Crappy horn: Sounds like a screaming mosquito. No one pays attention. Not even pedestrians. Horn wires/relay won't take much more than the load of the stock horn, so if you want to update you have to buy a new, custom-made harness.

 

Final Drive Paste: The factory comes up WAAAY short in the amount of lube it puts on the shaft drive splines and on the final-drive-to-rear-wheel splines. You gotta take the final drive off, pull the drive shaft, lube it, then reassemble it. A PITA.

 

Heat: The '03-'05 models were rolling ovens, your family jewels resting on the fuel tank being the main course, well done. Your fried legs baking below were the second course. The '06/07 bikes are tons better, but the right side still bleeds a little too much heat on hot days. The RT has INFINITELY SUPERIOR air flow management. No heat.

 

Center Drive Gear: A couple of these have grenaded. The FJR sends its power from the crank to the tranny via a central gear, between two of the cylinders. A few of these gears have been improperly hardened and when they blow they take a lot of stuff with them.

 

Yet, the bikes are good bikes with a lot of redeeming qualities. But with the internet, it's easy to complain and your issue becomes much greater in appearance than what it statistically represents. Go on a Gold Wing site and see the people complain about cracked frames, blown alternators, built-in GPS systems that are worthless, etc. etc. Go on a Harley board and you'll hear the same type of thing. . .complaints about heat, lean running, clearcoat on wheels that just flakes off, etc. etc.

 

It's the internet. There are zillions of good folks (most of them on this site). But along with them, the internet has become the bastion for all schmoes who feel they don't otherwise have a voice, to be heard. And so they type. Don't let it concern you. The RT is a fabulous bike. You will love it.

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Jim VonBaden
Do these really break down that much?.

 

No.

 

Us owners are just a bunch of niggling whiners. We overstate minor problems, and act like they are going to end the world. We turn a couple bikes having similar problems into OH MY GOD THEY'RE ALL GONNA BLOW UP. Take the entire internet with a grain of salt.

 

Give the bike a good once over when you get it. Familiarize yourself with the maintenance schedule, learn to do stuff yourself because you'll find problems sooner and be able to fix them when/ if they arise. You got a good bike.

 

Absolutely, though it is out of fashion to actually say this! dopeslap.gif

 

Jim cool.gif

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Will take deliverey of my new to me 04 1150rt Tuesday. After finding this sight I,m worried that I bought a bike thats going to be in the shop all the time. Do these really break down that much?. I,ve rode Japanese bikes for years with out really ever having a big problem. bete.

 

My '02 GS has just a tick over 72,000 miles on it, it's in the shop every 6,000 miles just like the manual says. I'd leave tomorrow for points unknown without worry.

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My '02 GS has just a tick over 72,000 miles on it, it's in the shop every 6,000 miles just like the manual says. I'd leave tomorrow for points unknown without worry.

+1 except that mine is a 99 with 89,000 miles and I do my own maintenance. But the "leave tomorrow" part is the same.

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Quote:

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My '02 GS has just a tick over 72,000 miles on it, it's in the shop every 6,000 miles just like the manual says. I'd leave tomorrow for points unknown without worry.

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+2 on that except that mine is an 02 with 92,000 miles and I also do my own maintenance. But the "leave tomorrow" part is the same. I did a 6300 mile trip from Los Angeles to Baltimore and back (different route) early this summer. Never gave the bike a second thought. It's always ready to go.

 

With 92,000 miles on the bike it's never had a major repair, never broken down on the highway, and still runs like a new bike.

 

Stan

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As Russell said in an earlier post, get an extended warranty if possible. My 04' RT was still under factory warranty when I bought it and that allowed me to purchase another 3 years. It definitely brings piece of mine.

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russell_bynum
Quote:

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My '02 GS has just a tick over 72,000 miles on it, it's in the shop every 6,000 miles just like the manual says. I'd leave tomorrow for points unknown without worry.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

+2 on that except that mine is an 02 with 92,000 miles and I also do my own maintenance. But the "leave tomorrow" part is the same. I did a 6300 mile trip from Los Angeles to Baltimore and back (different route) early this summer. Never gave the bike a second thought. It's always ready to go.

 

With 92,000 miles on the bike it's never had a major repair, never broken down on the highway, and still runs like a new bike.

 

Stan

 

Didn't you have a final drive bearing failure?

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Didn't you have a final drive bearing failure?

 

Not really.

 

At 70,000 miles I had some reason to be suspicious of my final drive. I had a tiny bit of play, the crown wheel seal looked like it was oozing a bit, and when I removed the ABS sensor and drained the final drive oil during my spline lube, a small chunk of metal came out with the oil.

 

So I opened it up. The crown wheel bearing seemed to be in perfect shape so I put it back in there. I did replace the seal, but the new seal still seems to be oozing a tiny bit after 22,000 miles. I also replaced the final drive pivot bearing and one pivot pin, the cause of the play.

 

The piece of metal looked like a piece of the housing left over from production turning on a lathe. It was a narrow strip curled up like a clock spring. It was brittle, definitely not part of a bearing. I flushed out the housing but didn't find another. My guess is it had been hiding up behind the ABS sensor for 70,000 miles.

 

The bike went back together with old crown bearing, new seal, new housing cover O ring, and two new final drive pivot bearings and one new pivot pin.

 

I still have a brand new 17 ball crown bearing in my spares.

 

Stan

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russell_bynum

Ah, OK...my bad.

 

Even though my RT grenaded the final drive at 28K, and had a few other minor problems throughout its life, I still wouldn't have hesitated to hop on it and ride cross-country.

 

I think that "Legendary BMW Reliability" is mostly a crock, but that doesn't mean I think the bikes are lemons....they're very good bikes.

 

It does bug me that they seem to have the same problems for years and years. The final drive failures, for example. I would think that someone at BMW with VP in their title would have thrown a fit long ago and said "fix this problem. NOW", but the new bikes seem to be having the same problems. That's one area where I think the Japanese seem to be doing better. If there's a problem, they generally address it fairly quickly (within a model year or two) and it goes away. BMW seems to have the same problems for eons. That's frustrating.

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I have an '02 GS with 82K miles. If I was going to ride cross-country tomorrow, the only thing I would check would be the gas gauge. Relax. It's a great bike.

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Will take deliverey of my new to me 04 1150rt Tuesday. After finding this sight I,m worried that I bought a bike thats going to be in the shop all the time. Do these really break down that much?. I,ve rode Japanese bikes for years with out really ever having a big problem. bete.

To add to what has already been written above, this forum is much more active than most other bike forums. Most owners are in for the long haul. Many more owners of BMW's contemplate doing work themselves rather than dropping it into a dealer. So you will see page upon page of problems, but that is what makes this bike so good, because most people can help diagnose problems for you.

I love my RT and have had my fair share of problems (I have NEVER had a problem with my Honda's - but they just don't get me going like the RT does)!

Andy

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IMO, BMWs are not as reliable as they should be and the problems they tend to have will strand you. (splines, final drives) That said, even the gloomiest estimate would give you in the neighborhood of a 90% chance or better of no problems at all on an oilhead.

The Hexheads appear to be more reliable.

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OK, I feel better now. I,ve been lusting after a 1150rt since I first saw them. I usally have 2 or 3 bikes at a time in the barn so its not like I would be on foot if it did go down. Someone said to get a extended warrenty, were are the best buys for these?. And thanks for all the responses. bete

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[hijack]

Can't answer your question about where to get the extended warranty - however, I do want to say welcome to the board - from one Kansan to another. It seems as though the ranks from Kansas are growing.

clap.gif

[/end hijack]

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Welcome to the board ,I purchased my 2000 rt w/92,000 in march I have just about 99,000 now .Great bike my old shadow had a lot worse surging issues than the bmw . Plus there was no way I would be doing 500+ mile days on my honda. Good luck ,maybe we will see you at the unrally. Dave

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