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2009 R1200RT maintenance


The Rocketman

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The Rocketman

Fluid changes planned this weekend at about 22,000 miles for my '09 RT.

 

Oil: Specs show 20w50. Dealer says they now recommend 15w50 semi-synthetic.

 

Final Drive and Transmission: 75w90 synthetic as long as its SAF-XO.

 

Always been partial to Spectro Golden 4 Semi Syn for my other BMWs. Not looking for brand recommendations here. Just want to confirm viscosity with you all.

 

I have a container of BMW 75w140 gear oil left over from a FD oil change last year on my '04 R1200C, but dealer said to go with 75w90 for the RT.

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Evening The Rocketman

 

Oil: Specs show 20w50. Dealer says they now recommend 15w50 semi-synthetic.---Either will work just fine. Just make sure what you use meets BMW specs.

 

Final Drive and Transmission: 75w90 synthetic as long as its SAF-XO.---SAF-XO is a Castrol product & difficult to find in the U.S. You need 75w90 GL-5 gear oil & non positraction if possible.

Your 2009 trans calls for (Brand name) hypoid-gear lubricant SAE 90 API GL-5. You can use a good 75w90 GL-5 but it actually calls for SAE 90 API GL-5.

 

Always been partial to Spectro Golden 4 Semi Syn for my other BMWs. Not looking for brand recommendations here. Just want to confirm viscosity with you all.---Oil requirements are in your riders manual so (IF) it meets the specs shown there you are good to go.

 

I have a container of BMW 75w140 gear oil left over from a FD oil change last year on my '04 R1200C, but dealer said to go with 75w90 for the RT. ---I agree with the dealer as it calls for 75w90. It takes so little that a quart will last through a few oil changes. But many have used 75w140 in the Hexhead trans with decent results.

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The Rocketman

Thanks for all the advice. Just to be on the safe side, I went to the dealer and got the real-deal BMW SAF-XO and BMW 15w50 engine oil. Job all done! Wanted to do the tranny today too, but only bought 1 liter, and realized when I got home I need a full liter to do the gearbox. That will wait for another day. Will flush brakes tomorrow. As for the mineral oil for the clutch...any need to get BMW branded stuff, or will any bike shop off-the-shelf mineral oil do?

Thanks.

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As for the mineral oil for the clutch...any need to get BMW branded stuff, or will any bike shop off-the-shelf mineral oil do?

 

Darn good question. A lot of home maintainers just use bicycle shop mineral oil or other clutch system mineral oil's & don't seem to have any issues.

 

There is BMW service bulletin to not mix mineral oils without doing a full & thorough system flushing so when I do service the clutch hydraulics (not very often) on the 1200 bikes I just use the BMW mineral oil.

 

Added: BMW spec mineral oil is__ Vitamol V10

 

 

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Guest Kakugo

The much vaunted BMW clutch fluid is really nothing more than a rebranded low viscosity hydraulic oil used in sundry industrial equipment, very much like MUPO's "secret" fork oil is really rebranded Royco 756 hydraulic oil. It's manufactured by Aral, a German BP subsidiary, and often branded as Castrol.

Bear in mind this is no "mineral oil" in the conventional sense: it's a synthetic hydraulic oil.

 

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The Rocketman

Gear oil I bought for tranny is Maxima 75w90 API GL-5 synthetic. It says "Not for use in wet clutch transmissions". Is this OK for my '09 RT?

Thanks again. I'm guessing mine is a dry clutch....never mind..silly question. Sorry :(

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Afternoon Rocketman

 

Yes, it won't hurt your transmission as it is the proper GL-5.

 

The only thing I can point out is I have tried (used) a lot of different trans gear oils in the 1200 bikes & some 1200 bikes don't shift very smooth with some gear oils. (doesn't seem to be much rhyme or reason to the gear oil brand vs shifting either)

 

SO, once you find a gear oil where you like the trans shifting I do suggest you stick with that brand & type. (FWIW- Mobil-1 gear oil seems to work good in most 1200 transmissions)

 

Some gear oils seem to shift great for a couple of thousand miles then the shifting degrades (I presume those gear oils shear easily)

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aggieengineer

That has been my experience as well. The two oils which have offered the best shifting qualities in my two RTs have been Mobil 1 and Castrol SAF-XO. The only one I didn't like, to my great surprise, was Amsoil Severe Gear 75w-90. Anything meeting the spec (GL-5) should be fine, but I really enjoy the luxurious shift quality of that transmission, and will stick with the lubricants that (subjectively) seem to work the best.

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That has been my experience as well. The two oils which have offered the best shifting qualities in my two RTs have been Mobil 1 and Castrol SAF-XO. The only one I didn't like, to my great surprise, was Amsoil Severe Gear 75w-90. Anything meeting the spec (GL-5) should be fine, but I really enjoy the luxurious shift quality of that transmission, and will stick with the lubricants that (subjectively) seem to work the best.

 

That's interesting. I've used nothing but Amsoil 75W90 in transmissions of both my R1200RTs and they've always shifted great.

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That has been my experience as well. The two oils which have offered the best shifting qualities in my two RTs have been Mobil 1 and Castrol SAF-XO. The only one I didn't like, to my great surprise, was Amsoil Severe Gear 75w-90. Anything meeting the spec (GL-5) should be fine, but I really enjoy the luxurious shift quality of that transmission, and will stick with the lubricants that (subjectively) seem to work the best.

 

That's interesting. I've used nothing but Amsoil 75W90 in transmissions of both my R1200RTs and they've always shifted great.

 

Correction. it's Amsoil 80W90 that I've been using.

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The Rocketman

Well the Maxima 75w90 API GL-5 synthetic now lives in my gear box. Suppose it will have to do for the next few thousand miles and we'll see how it goes. Short test ride today and I didn't notice any difference.

 

So it was a productive weekend. Final drive, gearbox, engine oil and front & rear brake fluid flushed. Air filter was fine. Overall opinion is to leave clutch alone. Fluid looked fine anyway. I think that's enough for now. Got the 24k service done 2k early, but since I got the bike end of last Summer with very little PO maintenance history, I feel better starting fresh now.

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The Rocketman

A "what if" question....

If one assumed one needed 1 liter of gear oil to do a tranny fluid change, and one drained the old fluid out, and one filled the tranny with new fluid and used all but 120ml (4oz) until it started dripping out the fill hole, and then one took the bike off the center stand, put it on the side stand, and filled the remaining 120ml and closed things up....is this a terrible thing?

 

Would it be advisable to leave things as they are or to open the fill hole and let the excess drain out?

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Evening Rocketman

 

 

Probably not, a lot depends on how long you drained the trans.

 

In the 1200 gear boxes I always use the full quart (32oz) but I do drain the trans overnight (so it is REAL EMPTY when I fill it).

 

Your liter is just short of 34 ounces so you are about 1-3/4 oz over my 1 quart.

 

My guess is that your overfill isn't that drastic but draining it down to bottom of fill hole would probably be the safest approach.

 

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The Rocketman

OK I feel better now. Just drained off excess gear oil, re-assembled and wrapped it up for the night.

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Last time I changed my tranny fluid about 22K miles ago I put in XAF-SO since I had it for the final drive. Previously I had used the "old container" BMW 75W-90, which I believe (but not certain) was at least semi-synth if not full dino. I have noticed a lot more gear rattle at idle since I put the XAF-SO in (you know, the rattling that the transmission does when in neutral and the clutch is let out). I'm not too concerned about the rattle, it's normal for an opposed twin, but all else being equal I'd prefer to not hear it. I'm coming up on another scheduled fluid change so I'll try something different. Thanks for the recommendation on Mobil-1, DR.

 

Haven't noticed any particular difference in shifting, just the noise.

 

JayJay

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