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Another new member -1999 R1100R


kalali

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Hello to the good folks of the forum. Bought my first BMW bike and rode it for the first time this weekend. Its a 99 R1100R with 15000 miles, pacific blue. My other bike is an 00 Buell X1 which I've owned for over 8 years. I was looking for a more "gentleman" bike and this bike is exactly what I was looking for. The previous owner had three bikes including a K1200GT which is his daily driver. Looks like the R has been very well maintained and garage kept. I do my own wrenching and have a lot to learn about this new bike. The bike rides great but couple of things that struck me very different during the first two miles of my first ride were the clunky gearbox and the slight "pull" to the right when throttle is applied. The clunk is apparently normal and I'll just need to develop the shifting skills on how to deal with it. I'm assuming the slight pull is due to the way the engine is laid out and crank rotation, etc. Could throttle body out of synchronization cause this behavior?

All in all, I'm very excited to be part of this community and look forward to learning about my bike from the knowledgeable folks on this site. I'll post a picture as soon as I figure out how to do it.

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Morning kalali

 

BMW 1100 trans is a thin walled casting with dry clutch so some clunkiness is normal-- it should get better as you figure out how to shift around the noise.

 

In some cases slightly pre-loading the shift lever just before the shift can make it shift much smoother.

 

Also clutch lever speed can help (just play with different clutch dis-engagement speeds & amount of lever travel (something along those lines should help)

 

On the pull to the right?-- That is known as PTTR in BMW talk & most 1100/1150 BMW's have that. It isn't engine crankshaft related or 2 cylinder related it is more related to the weight offset of the trans & rear wheel not being directly behind the front causing weight offset from centerline.

 

Lots of ways to deal with the PTTR but don't do anything until you ride the bike 1000 miles. Most riders don't even notice it after riding the bike for a while.

 

If it still bothers you after 1000 miles THEN you can address it with some unconventional things.

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Welcome Kalali, good to have you around here.

Could you fill out your profile a bit more so that we can be more constructive if it is needed.

Time in the saddle will improve your gearbox noises.

If the clutch is set up correctly, I am sure that in no time at all you will master the traits of the 1100 box and it will turn into a non issue.

As to the pulling to the right, make sure your tyres are in good shape and that they are well inflated. then as DR said you will not even notice it.

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Thanks everyone for the warm welcome. Every bike I've owned had its own quirks and to me that's what gives the bike its unique character. First thing I did was spent a full day and detailed the bike and was constantly amazed by the build quality and the attention to detail. It all shined up real nicely. As for the tires, I already have new tires sitting in the garage ready to go - Metzler Z6 in OEM size. Seemed like an obvious choice. The rear is fairly new and can wait a little but the front will be replaced in the next week or so. In the meantime, I'm reading any article or watching any video related to Oilheads that I can find. Lots of great resources out there, including this group. The previous owner also pointed me to a local shop who specializes on BMW motorcycles and knows this bike. He gave me a receipt for the 12000 mile service that they did and it included putting in a "revised" chain tensioner. Apparently that's something that folks replace as a matter of course. All fluids were replaced early this season and I plan to change them, like I do with all my bike(s), before putting it away for the winter. I appreciate any tips from experienced folks here, no matter how obvious they might seem. Thanks again.

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Matthew Miller

Kalali, On June 2, 2105 I purchased a 2001 BMW R1100RL with only just under 19,000 miles on it. I am told that Oilheads do not even break in till 20,000 miles. Now I have 23,000 on it and it either runs better or I just got used to some the querks in the bike. At first the engine surging between 3,000 and 3,500RPM really bothered me. None of my Japanese bikes or my 1970 Moto Guzzi Ambassador ever did that. Basically people here told me in general do not ride the bike below 3,500RPM and ride with some gusto. BMW engines were not designed to lug around like cruisers. I totally agree with you on the Transmission, truthfully it is the clunkiest tranny I have ever owned in 35 years of riding. However I did get used to after about 1,000 miles of riding. At first I absolutely could not downshift the bike smoothly. The RPM's dropped to quickly. I learned to not release the throttle all the way in the middle of the shift. It is still clunky but I have gotten used to how the transmission works. Obviously they work well since they are very reliable. Checking your oil is tricky it seems, at least to me. Add the correct amount of oil and check it where your bike is parked to find the correct amount in the site glass for your location. I am about to do that since I am about to do my first tune-up at 24,000 miles. Good Luck and enjoy a bike that looks great and handles great on twisty roads without the back breaking of a sport bike.

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I rode the bike for a couple of hundred miles this weekend while concentrating on trying to improve my shifting technique. Getting much better especially while downshifting by blipping the throttle, just as do with my other bike and shifts are a lot smoother with much less front dive. I don't experience much surging but went ahead and replaced the spark plugs with Autolite3923s just for good measure.

Question on cold starting: The bike seems to stumble a little and struggles keeping a good/high idle even with the fast idle pulled. On a couple of occasions it even died and required a restart. It runs nice and smooth when I let it warm up for a minute or two and I can close the fast idle and it idles fine. Warm restarts are fine. Its not a big deal and my FI Buell is the same way but was wondering if there is anything that I can adjust or this is just another quirk of the bike? Thanks.

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I rode the bike for a couple of hundred miles this weekend while concentrating on trying to improve my shifting technique. Getting much better especially while downshifting by blipping the throttle, just as do with my other bike and shifts are a lot smoother with much less front dive. I don't experience much surging but went ahead and replaced the spark plugs with Autolite3923s just for good measure.

Question on cold starting: The bike seems to stumble a little and struggles keeping a good/high idle even with the fast idle pulled. On a couple of occasions it even died and required a restart. It runs nice and smooth when I let it warm up for a minute or two and I can close the fast idle and it idles fine. Warm restarts are fine. Its not a big deal and my FI Buell is the same way but was wondering if there is anything that I can adjust or this is just another quirk of the bike? Thanks.

 

You can adjust the fast idle cable, but your problem probably lies in the lower throttle cables themselves. They tend to stretch over time. Eventually there is so much slack that the fast idle lever just takes up the slack. It no longer opens the butterflies. It's not a big deal and I wouldn't mess with it until you decide to do a full tune-up with a throttle body synch.

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Thank you. The fast idle cable "feels" tight and seems to do its job once the bike warms up just a little bit. Its just the very first cold start up that is a bit rough and choppy. I know the previous owner was fairly malicious but I'm going to do a full routine on the bike after I become more familiar with the bike. For now I'm just trying to learn enough to be able to distinguish between what's normal and what needs to be corrected.

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I started reading the very long thread on the slow starting '04RT to get some insight. There are some obvious (and some not so obvious to me) differences between the single plug and dual plug heads but I'm finding the info in that thread extremely informative and helpful.

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What I have learned on my R1100R is when shifting: get up to shift speed then with no more excelleration stableize rpm and then shift. It works great and will shift smooth. It takes a little practice but keep trying and you will see the results.

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  • 3 weeks later...
Matthew Miller

I was just reading a thread somewhere about rough starting when cold. I have a 2001 R1100RL that stumbles a bit in the morning for about 30 seconds. The thread said that using a Battery tender will cure the problem since the clock and I am not sure what else uses battery power while sitting. I have not purchased a Battery Tender yet but I am about to since it is beginning to get cool.

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Matthew,

 

That report was from me, and no, after a week or so it went back to rough starting and smoking. I have since checked the O2 sensor for correct operation and it was functioning well. Have not found the problem yet. It has been acting this way for quite some time.

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At first the engine surging between 3,000 and 3,500RPM really bothered me.

 

I totally agree with you on the Transmission, truthfully it is the clunkiest tranny I have ever owned in 35 years of riding. However I did get used to after about 1,000 miles of riding. At first I absolutely could not downshift the bike smoothly. The RPM's dropped to quickly. I learned to not release the throttle all the way in the middle of the shift. It is still clunky but I have gotten used to how the transmission works. Obviously they work well since they are very reliable.

 

Not trying to threadjack, but I was going to start a thread on my bikes('94 RS) "quirks" now that Ive ridden it a few times, this address's all of that . . . Im having a real time trying to heft this beast around. Way bigger and heavier than I expected!! I'm getting it though . . . The trans is the clunkin'est one I've ever encountered. Sometimes it sounds like a bunch of nuts and bolts in coffee can. And, what you mention about 3000rpm is what I have found. My bike likes to sort of hover there as a minimum rpm for smooth running. I had a lot of trouble with low speed handling, but lowered the seat and moved the bars out a few notches and its gotten a little better. it idles at around 900, not very smooth though, so keeping the revs up and fanning the clutch is necessary for in-town work. I love the way it runs on the highway. Those massive jugs purring like a DC-3 is a real visceral thrill!

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One thing I've found helpful in low speed maneuverability is tire pressure. Try pumping up the front to 42psi and the rear to 44psi and see if that helps. The obvious trade-off is a bit harsher ride but you can partially compensate for that by adjusting the rear shock compression. The other side benefit is longer tire life. Regarding the transmission, mine is clunky just during shifting, otherwise it's absolutely quiet while running in gear. Your reference to nuts and bolts in a coffee can noise implies an internal transmission issue, not a clunky shifter.

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Can you provide more details about what's contributing to the differences in the results and the bike represented by these graphs, i.e., model, year, mileage, and any modifications from stock. Thanks.

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Not trying to threadjack, but I was going to start a thread on my bikes('94 RS) "quirks" now that Ive ridden it a few times, this address's all of that . . . Im having a real time trying to heft this beast around. Way bigger and heavier than I expected!! I'm getting it though . . . The trans is the clunkin'est one I've ever encountered. Sometimes it sounds like a bunch of nuts and bolts in coffee can. And, what you mention about 3000rpm is what I have found. My bike likes to sort of hover there as a minimum rpm for smooth running. I had a lot of trouble with low speed handling, but lowered the seat and moved the bars out a few notches and its gotten a little better. it idles at around 900, not very smooth though, so keeping the revs up and fanning the clutch is necessary for in-town work. I love the way it runs on the highway. Those massive jugs purring like a DC-3 is a real visceral thrill!

 

Two quick things. First, I think your idle is too low. The spec is 1050 +/- 50. I like it a little higher, around 1200. You can adjust it by turning the big brass screws on the throttle bodies. Try turning each screw 1/2 turn to the left. If you like it, leave it. If not, turn it back. (Note: Eventually you will wan to get a manometer and do a careful balance, but there is no harm in giving it a swag.

 

The best cure I've found for the surge is to simply remove the cat code plug in the fusebox under the seat. It's a 1-inch square yellow (probably) plug. The starter relay is also yellow, so if you pull it and the bike won't start, put it back and pull the other one.

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The best cure I've found for the surge is to simply remove the cat code plug in the fusebox under the seat. It's a 1-inch square yellow (probably) plug. The starter relay is also yellow, so if you pull it and the bike won't start, put it back and pull the other one.

 

Morning Jim

 

I don't think the 1994RS has a CCP in the fuse box. If I remember correctly the Motronic coding is controlled by a wire in the harness not an external CCP.

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My 94 R1100RS did, until I pulled it and threw it away. Maybe mine was late 94?

 

Afternoon Jim

 

I'm back home now so trotted out to my shop (my old BMW bulletins & CCP usage are only in paper form).

 

It looks like your are right-- The 1993RS all used the wire harness run coding wire, that was carried into the very/very early 94RS then BMW added the fuse box CCP coding system (at least according to the info I have on the 1100 RS.

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