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Wet Head Shocks????


mrzoom

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For those of you that have some miles on your bike how are the shocks holding up as far as ride control??

In the past many RT riders have changed out the stock shocks with expensive after market units early on and you see comments such as, "Now corners like it was on rails" , "best thing I've done to my RT" and other similar statements.

The reason I ask is If I'm ever lucky enough to run across a "deal" on a used Wet Head say with 30,000 miles will I find

worn out shocks with poor ride control which would require replacement to get the best ride and handling from the bike.??

This situation would be costly and I would use it in price negotiations.

Your comments are welcomed.

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The vast majority of wethead RT's are going to have electronic suspension. These are built by Marzocchi (sp?) and I suspect the quality on these will allow them a much longer life than some of the stuff from Oilhead days. Putting on a set of Ohlins on the bike the day it was new netted a big improvement, let alone the difference at 30,000 mile. I don't feel the need for an upgrade on the new RT.

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Apart from electronic pre-load and spring load, the wethead now also incorporates active suspension.

Certainly one of the main features of the bike.

Never say never, but in this case, I don't think you will ever find a suitable replacement that can compete on performance. Not for the next 5 years....if ever.

The aftermarket unit would have to be highly integrated into the bikes Computer system and I am sure that BMW isn't about to hand out the codes to do so.

And if they keep developing it at a reasonable pace, then in 2 years or less, you will see an upgraded version out again.

The numbers to sell just won't be there for an aftermarket manufacturer to put that much R&R into it and still be able to sell the aftermarket product for an exceptable price.

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Guest Kakugo
Apart from electronic pre-load and spring load, the wethead now also incorporates active suspension.

Certainly one of the main features of the bike.

Never say never, but in this case, I don't think you will ever find a suitable replacement that can compete on performance. Not for the next 5 years....if ever.

The aftermarket unit would have to be highly integrated into the bikes Computer system and I am sure that BMW isn't about to hand out the codes to do so.

And if they keep developing it at a reasonable pace, then in 2 years or less, you will see an upgraded version out again.

The numbers to sell just won't be there for an aftermarket manufacturer to put that much R&R into it and still be able to sell the aftermarket product for an exceptable price.

 

Wilbers already has Dynamic ESA shock available for the Wethead RT . :clap:

 

I have to ask my friendly Wilbers dealer details like how long does the "electronic transplant" take, delivery times, how hard is to get the OE shocks out etc but just now they are out there. :thumbsup:

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I have read your link Kakugo

It tells me about damping and pre-load.

But no mention of the "active" part of the suspension.

So I am not sure that this version will give you back the full functionalism as you have with the originals.

You would have to ring them and have that clarified.

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I hope somebody finds a way to rebuild them. It appears that Marzocchi will not be around much longer.

 

I cannot read the German in Kakugo's link, but my Chrome browser gives a funky translation that includes "The new WESA Dynamic Comfort solution shocks without reservoir and without Feedbackversteller for BMW R1200 RT from model year 2014>, are now available through our trained WESA-partners." I think this is similar to the Wilbers replacement for the 2005-2013 ESA shock - a new shock reusing the BMW adjuster and sensors. So there is hope...

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Morning Larry

Doesn't Sachs make the active suspension for the GS-LC???

So I am sure they could pick up the RT in no time.

In regards to the Wilbers, they could well give full functionality and I am sure somebody will clarify it at some point.

For me personally, once mine are clapped out, I expect the replacement to be as good if not better. So unless another brand can offer all the features, I will be replacing the originals with BMW replacements.

Personally, I hope that Wilbers and maybe Sachs&Ohlins will have full replacements available, as I do like the idea of having shocks that are set up for my weight.

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Morning Larry

Doesn't Sachs make the active suspension for the GS-LC???

 

I'm not positive, just saw an earlier post suggesting Marzocchi is BMW's source and remembered Tenneco was trying to sell them off.

 

Googling a bit now:

At least one article states BMW would be affected by a Marzocchi shutdown, but does not specify which models would be involved.

 

One post over on advrider during last year's ride ban stated the RT ESA is made by Marzocchi, while the GS ESA is from Sachs. (No source provided for this claim)

 

Motorcyclist magazine did a touring comparison of sorts in June that showed the shock is made by Sachs. I'd hope they have reliable sources. (They really like the RT)

 

:S

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Guest Kakugo

I am shooting an email to my friendly Wilbers dealer and let you know what they have to say.

With all the money I dropped them and the good publicity I did for them I hope they will reply in a reasonable time.

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The front shock on my '14 RT is a Marzocchi. Didn't look at the rear, but I remember reading they are Marzocchi also. Which is why the GS didn't have the shock recall as it had the Sachs built shock.

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The day I picked up my new R2015RT back in April the rear shock was leaking, I refused it so they took another RT out the crate and put it together for me, after 100 mi it too was leaking. The dealer ordered a new shock after inspecting (and calling BMW) at 600mi service, now at 1500mi no leaks yet. Maybe the folks at Marzocchi know they were for sale and aren't paying full attention to what they are building?!?!?1

 

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Guest Kakugo

I got a reply from my friendly Wilbers dealer.

According to the long email they sent me, chock full of details, once the shocks are rebuilt they keep full Dynamic ESA functionality.

And that comes literally at a price. Retail price including taxes is 1450€ for the two shocks. I paid my WESA shocks (Hexhead) 950€ in 2011 and 1400€ for new suspensions for the Honda (twin rear shocks plus new fork springs and internals) last year.

 

Hope this is what you wanted to hear... apart from the price tag!

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Just doing the conversion and assuming shipping costs, I would assume around AUS $2400,- for both shocks.

That's actually not too bad.

Are they able to be rebuild?

Their Website doesn't say so, unless I missed it.

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Guest Kakugo
Just doing the conversion and assuming shipping costs, I would assume around AUS $2400,- for both shocks.

That's actually not too bad.

Are they able to be rebuild?

Their Website doesn't say so, unless I missed it.

 

The procedure is pretty much the same as with older ESA shocks: they take off all the electronic and electrical parts which give ESA functionalities and transplant them on their shocks. Judging by labor rates (they also gave me a price breakdown) it takes less time than with ESA I & II shocks. Like previous WESA shocks, these new "WESA-X" are fully serviceable and come with a five year unlimited mileage warranty.

 

Regarding OE rebuilds: there was a suspension workshop near me that used to do them for all ESA shocks (including Dynamic) but the owner retired earlier this Summer and didn't find anybody to sell his business to, so he just closed shop.

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  • 1 month later...
Guest Kakugo
Marzocchi is for sale and I thought I read somewhere that BMW was going to buy them.

 

http://www.cycleworld.com/2015/05/19/marzocchi-italian-motorcycle-suspension-specialist-for-sale/

 

According to a magazine article I read recently, Tenneco shut down the Marzocchi assembly plant in late July. OE supplies will continue as long as stocks last but then that's it.

 

This means BMW will have to find a new supplier for RT-W shocks, as stocks are enough to get to November at most.

Possible alternative suppliers include Showa, WP and Sachs.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Marzocchi is for sale and I thought I read somewhere that BMW was going to buy them.

 

http://www.cycleworld.com/2015/05/19/marzocchi-italian-motorcycle-suspension-specialist-for-sale/

 

According to a magazine article I read recently, Tenneco shut down the Marzocchi assembly plant in late July. OE supplies will continue as long as stocks last but then that's it.

 

This means BMW will have to find a new supplier for RT-W shocks, as stocks are enough to get to November at most.

Possible alternative suppliers include Showa, WP and Sachs.

Sounds like BMW did not do their homework on this one. You'd think they would've locked this one up on a new model.
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Just got a wethead R bike - without the D-ESA. I won't say it's a bad option, just my choice. What's funny about the R bikes, if I understand correctly, is that Marzocchi makes the dynamic rear shock while Sachs makes the standard one.

 

No matter who is making the components, I rode both models and both were standard BMW fare -- not so great. I've owned 7 BMW bikes and this new one is no different in that it was immediately clear that it would benefit from an aftermarket (better) shock. The R-bike has become easier in this regard as they've gone back to a conventional fork, making buying two shocks unnecessary but probably requiring a fork spring swap at some point.

 

It was one reason I went for the standard suspension, one less system to go flooey on the road and I figured I'd be swapping out for Ohlins or Wilburs or Nitron at some point anyway -- I'd done it so many times before.

 

But now, I'm waiting for someone to make an aftermarket solution. You guys are right that dynamic suspension systems is helping to put the aftermarket guys in a pickle, as all of that software is proprietary and tough to integrate. Still, I have no doubts that ALL of them will offer solutions to the stock systems, whether they have the electronics or not...........Now I play the waiting game.

 

Ohlins? Wilburs? Nitron? Anyone want a beta tester for the new LC BMW's without the electronics? Call me.

 

 

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Just got a wethead R bike - without the D-ESA. I won't say it's a bad option, just my choice. What's funny about the R bikes, if I understand correctly, is that Marzocchi makes the dynamic rear shock while Sachs makes the standard one.

 

No matter who is making the components, I rode both models and both were standard BMW fare -- not so great. I've owned 7 BMW bikes and this new one is no different in that it was immediately clear that it would benefit from an aftermarket (better) shock. The R-bike has become easier in this regard as they've gone back to a conventional fork, making buying two shocks unnecessary but probably requiring a fork spring swap at some point.

 

It was one reason I went for the standard suspension, one less system to go flooey on the road and I figured I'd be swapping out for Ohlins or Wilburs or Nitron at some point anyway -- I'd done it so many times before.

 

But now, I'm waiting for someone to make an aftermarket solution. You guys are right that dynamic suspension systems is helping to put the aftermarket guys in a pickle, as all of that software is proprietary and tough to integrate. Still, I have no doubts that ALL of them will offer solutions to the stock systems, whether they have the electronics or not...........Now I play the waiting game.

 

Ohlins? Wilburs? Nitron? Anyone want a beta tester for the new LC BMW's without the electronics? Call me.

 

 

I don't know if they work in your neck of the woods, but MUPO of Italy does one-off suspension solutions that won't hit you with a monster bill. I got twin fully adjustable shock and fork internals for my Honda for 1400€, including shipping.

Turnaround time was about seven working days and they even allowed me to pick shock colors at no extra charge.

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