Jump to content

rt length of service


Recommended Posts

Every morning I just say......come on baby, just 6 more months!


In my particular case......I'm sitting at 106k miles and my bike has got to the point where it is burning a quart of oil every thousand miles. I've already replaced the HES, rebuilt the final drive, and just rebuilt the transmission. I payed for it with cash back in '05 so I can justify dropping a few hundred bucks into a every couple of months. The other thing is that my bike never touches the shop......if I payed someone to work on it or had a monthly payment, I would NEVER be able to afford it.


Other than the oil consumption, it runs great. I'm still averaging right around 40mpg and haven't noticed a loss of power or anything. I want to run a compression and leakdown test here sometime soon, but haven't got around to it yet. I'm assuming my rings are shot. As of right now, I want it to last another 25-50k miles. BUT.....If I can't get the oil consumption down without spending a bunch of cash, then this coming year may be its final season. I don't mind spending the money every few months, but I do get tired of constantly wrenching on it.

Link to comment

Constant repairs? Haven't had any repairs to speak of on either of my 2 RT's, yet.


106,000 on the '02, another 75,000 or so on the '96. I did replace the clutch on the '96 when I did a spline lube at 70,000. But it still had about 25,000 miles left in it.


Put me down for 200,000 or more, On each....





Link to comment

Keith, as far as the oil burning it is still in BMW spec and I'm sure you wrench on it less than I did on my last Harley with that many miles on it... Hell you've already done near everything else just split the cases and do the motor, you'll get another 100k out her.

Link to comment
Put me down for 200,000 or more

Me too. I can't say that my RT hasn't needed any repairs but I do all the work myself so not really a big deal when something comes up. Over 100k now and the bike still runs and handles well, in some ways I think it's better than it was new. About the only think I might not want to bother with is splitting the engine cases so barring any major failures that would require that I expect it to see at least another 100k.

Link to comment
Dave in Doodah

Yikes! If folks are worried about their oilheads after 100 or 150K miles, then maybe I should shed the '03 and keep the '83.


Other than 2 sets of fork seals, a diode board early on and an ignition switch; along with two carb re-builds, a clutch, a set of rear shocks and the other usual maintenance items - I really can't think of any major wrench-turning I've had to do to my airhead in the last 20 years. And I certainly have not had to crack open the engine or final drive... never even pulled the cylinder heads. I do add about a half a quart of oil in between oil changes, but that is way less than what I am feeding the '03 with 26K on it while it 'breaks in.'


On the '83 I am still running the original exhaust and carb jets, for Pete's sake. The fork bearings have got a pretty good detent worn in and the exhaust note is a bit 'agressive', but overall this thing is a dream and rock solid. Sure, it's not nearly as refined or smooth riding as my newer bike - no ABS and only 30-something mpg - but I never hesitate to hop on and ride 200 miles each way to KC and back without checking anything more than tire pressures.

Link to comment
Keith, as far as the oil burning it is still in BMW spec and I'm sure you wrench on it less than I did on my last Harley with that many miles on it... Hell you've already done near everything else just split the cases and do the motor, you'll get another 100k out her.


I know its still within BMW specs, but I'm getting a little fed up with it. For instance, two weeks ago I headed down to NC for the BRR. The oil was fine before I left the garage. By the time I got there I had to add a 1/2 a quart. Then after two days of riding I had to add the other 1/2. Then I rode all the way home and added about 2/3 of a quart to get it back up to normal.


To put things into perspective......while I'm home and commuting, I dump in 1/2 a quart a week. I figure I'm burning about $200 worth of mobil 1 a year. Might as well have bought a two stroke.

Link to comment
Joe Frickin' Friday
how many miles do you expect to get out of your rt before constant repairs make you buy a new one?100k 150k 200k ???


'99 R1100RT here.


Constant repairs don't bother me so much as the thought of a major breakdown far from home that costs me a lot of money and/or vacation time to resolve, and possibly ruins a major vacation. With 130K miles on the clock, I carry a bunch of cheap spares, but they mostly cover the usual maintenance items: alt belt, clutch/throttle cables, etc.


Like Keith, I was recently lucky enough to catch my gearbox in the act of self-destruction, and was able to rebuild it in the comfort of my own garage. And then a few weeks later my clutch actuator arm simply snapped in two down in North Carolina. With the help of dedicated and very giving friends I managed to fix it down there and get back to Michigan just a few hours later than planned, but it could potentially have been much more of a PITA; when it first happened I had images of burning extra vacation time, renting a truck to haul the bike home, and so on.


This is my RT's tenth season, and I think it will probably be its last with me. It's taken me on a profound journey on many fronts - I will be sad to see it go - but I think I'm finally ready for something new. Look for me next spring astride something with four cylinders, cruise control, and a whole lot of power... :Cool:

Link to comment

My '98 RT-P still starts and runs fine despite being spanked repeatedly by ticket hungry LEO's. I can't afford to sell it, it isn't worth anything.

Link to comment

i started this post for curiosity's sake. i was 186 miles from las vegas in the middle of the dessert when my drive went gearbox and God knows what else went.. thank God i had dale from las vegas bmw in my corner as he sent a truck to get me...if i moved back to las vegas i would consider another rt but only because of the dale the service manager of bmw las vegas...next time it's a triumph tiger for me.

Link to comment

My 99 RT has 123k and everything is still original, it doesn't burn oil, the rear drive looks solid, no running in the rain problems. It is unbelievable. But because of the milage, I fear upcoming expense. I just dont want to deal with a situation where you do one repair after another. I spent some time riding my son's 650 V-Strom and I have to say it is very impressive and doesnt cost close to 20k

Link to comment

I saw one other motorcycle out today, and it was a V-strom. When I left home it was 28 degrees F, and it was cold but ok on the R1100RT, and I know that I wouldn't have riden close to 70 miles today without all the weather protection my bike gives. I've only 28200 no big problem miles on my bike and hope that it can survive for a long time. It runs very well and feels much better this year compared to last as the miles accumulate.


Tomorrow I plan to go for a day trip on the bike as the temps soar up to the 60 degree F mark, and I'm certain that there will be very few other bikes out enjoying themselves as they could on an RT.

Link to comment



04 RT1150


-tires, fluids, plugs, 2 alternator belts, 2 stick coils, new pivot bushings. I have a new fuel filter but haven't installed it yet. Do all routine maintenance myself. Warranty replaced a starter at 32K, but it could have been repaired.


Runs like a top ... ~42mpg when I ride for the fun of it, but nearly 50 when I'm riding 2-up and cruising all day. Original clutch gives good service, but I will probably replace it this winter. Final drive fluid changed every time I change oil (5-6K usually) ... no metal in the fluid and no deflection.


I've been thinking about riding it to 250K but I did the math and that means no new bike for 8 more years unless I get going with more than 20K per year.

Link to comment

I'll roll over 150,000 at the Death Valley Pre-Run next week on my 2003 RT and Leslie's only a few thousand behind me on her 2002 RT.


In talking to the good folks at San Jose BMW they said I could expect 150k-200K out of the top end before needing the first top end rebuild. As soon as it starts burning oil and the compression drops (hasn't yet) I'll send the heads in to have the dual-spark mod done then ride him for another 150k-200k.


We haven't ridden much at all in the last two years, but if I can get my life back in order and get back to the 30-35k miles/year we used to do, I might be looking at a new 2014 . . . or just buy one of these garage queens that pop up in our Classified Forum from time to time so I can keep an 1150RT in my stable. :Cool:

Link to comment

My intro to BMW ownership was a 1979 R80-RT. Ex police. She leaked oil, burned oil and rattled well. But after 250k she started first time, and would carry me and the wife fully loaded up at 80 mph all day. New is not always best! I currently ride a 2000 1100 RT-P, it`s great as well.

Link to comment


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...