Jump to content
eliastfk93

K Bike Reliability

Recommended Posts

eliastfk93

Hello all,

 

I'm a long time oilhead owner and I'm to the point where I want something bigger and more powerful. I'm about to put my 04 rockster up for sale, and I'm really thinking about jumping up to a K bike. I am considering an K1200gt, I like all years, but I've heard the 03-05 are more reliable. I do like the shape of the later bikes though. My questions are this:

 

1) Is the duo-lever front suspension problematic? I live and commute in Houston, TX and our roads are horrible. I just want to know the if duo-lever can hold up to the task.

2) Are there any other gremlins to look out for?

 

I'd even consider a k1200s or a k1200r.

 

All info is welcome!

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tallman

The 03-05 GT is very different than the wedge GT/R/S.

All have pros, and cons.

Maintained and ridden they can go a very long time.

Like any 10-16 yo motorcycle there are things you can do to make them more "reliable".

There are things you can do to make them more ridable; windscreens for example, depending on your height.

The '03-'05 had a massive electrical capability for extra lights, heated gear, etc.

Once you narrow it down I'm sure someone will chime in.

Best wishes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Dennis Andress

The 'Brick' engine was introduced in 1985. Over the years is grew larger and more powerful until it became the K1200 RS/GT (1998-2004). An outstanding way to travel fast.

 

The 'Wedge' engine was introduced in 2005, and promptly recalled until engine problems were sorted out. Recalls were common until the K1300 was introduced in 2009. The K1300 GT is also an outstanding way to travel - even faster. But, alas, it gained too much weight for my tastes.

 

If reliability is paramount for you go with a K1300 and make sure all recalls have been completed. Some lower ball joints on the duolever (Hossack) fork wear out around 40K miles. A brick K1200 RS/GT would be equally reliable, but a little old to expect experienced service. If you are good with wrenches look for a 2003-04 K1200 GT with Ohlins shocks. :thumbsup:.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Johnny Jetson

 

I agree completely with Dennis. I had an 07 K1200GT and it was "the girl with the curl." When it was running, it was unbelievable - The bike would invite you to to evil -- throw it into any corner at any speed and the bike would ask for more. Pass 5 cars behind a motornome on a long hill? Click down two gears and the rocketship would take you by in seconds (be careful, though, you're heading into a 55 mph corner at 115).

 

I loved it when I wasn't hating it. Recalls? Too many to list. After that, stupid things -- $400 kickstand backordererd from Germany, spark plub wires have the iginition coils in them and they always break during a tune-up. $1200 for a driveshaft because the carrier bearing in the middle can't be lubed. I averaged at least 2 $1000+ repairs a year.

 

I have also been told that the K1300 series was a much better bike, but the people who are selling them know that and the prices reflect it.

 

Lots of good parts on EBay. If you can do your own repairs or have a good indy shop nearby. If the dealer is going to do all your work, much of it will now have to be ordered from Germany (most dealers don't stock a lot of these parts).

 

Good luck --

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
RTmutter

I bought a 2004 R1150RT 2 years ago. This was my first BMW bike. I still have it , ride it and love it. Plenty of power and very comfortable after I installed foot lowering pegs and barbacks.

Last year, I decided I wanted to try a K bike, just because. I bought a 2004 K1200GT. I thought my oilhead had all the power anyone would need and it probably does but the K1200 takes the power to another level. Extremely quick, fast and agile, almost scary sometimes.

They are different bikes for sure. I usually alternate between them when I go out for a ride. Maybe my description would be that the 1200GT is a SPORT touring bike and the 1150RT is a TOURING sport bike.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
eliastfk93

Thanks all,

 

I'm most likely going to end up with a "flying brick" variant. I do all of my own maintenance on my oilheads, and lots of the components seem to be shared between the 1150's and the early K1200's.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
beemerman2k

With only 15K on my 09 K1300GT, I don't know that I'm yet qualified to speak on this subject. Nonetheless, I'll say my piece.

 

My bike has been ultra-reliable in this short time of ownership--about 9 months. I bought it used with 6K miles, it now has 15K miles.

 

Problems: stalling when slowing to a stop. Fixed with latest firmware update. And I mean fixed, hasn't stalled like that in some time now.

Battery died: when riding on a cold day in January and was almost stranded with a dead battery. After arranging to be towed to a dealer and waiting for the truck, I decided to try it one more time. Bike fired right up!

 

Rode to a BMW dealership, bought a new battery AND a battery tender, which I keep it on whenever it's in the garage.

 

Had to make some mods to make the bike comfortable; it didn't fit me as easily and naturally as my 2000 R1100RT did, but I have no reason to question it's reliability at this point. Fires up first time everytime--regardless of the weather--assuming the battery is good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Twinsig

Elias,

Did you get that K? Just curious. I sold out my rt, & bought 04 KGT. No regrets!

Oh, and those Ks are getting really cheap lately.

Edited by Twinsig

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
saline

I had a 2002 K1200RS, which I thought was a great compromise between the pocket rocket S and the geiser glide GT. It had the HP and stance of the S, but the creature comforts of the GT. Again, a compromise, but one I happily lived with for 8 years. I wish they would bring the K-RS back. Everyone kept warning about the ABS unit that BMW used until I think 2008, but I had no issues. Every once in a while I'd get the brake warning light com on, but I'd just turn off the key and restart the bike. I got to the point that I never even stopped the bike. While rolling, I would turn off the engine and restart. It seemed to happen when I hit a bump or something caused the front and rear wheels to go out of sync. The fork seals would need to be replaced every 3 or 4 years. My only complaint was the seat was a hard foam. I had someone put a gel and leather to cover it, and I was good for several hours.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Endobobdds

I have over 1000,000 miles on 2 K1200RS bikes (2002 & 2003 - totaled the 2003 on a track day). Love the K1200RS for all types of hard surface riding. Got myself into a few jams when going on dirt/gravel roads.

Never thought I would part with the K bike, however, purchased a 2018 R1200 GSA. After 6,000+ miles on the GSA, I feel that the GSA has as much torque and acceleration power as the K1200RS and allows me to get back into some serious off road riding. :thumbsup:

Do not think I want to maintain 2 bikes, so my current K bike, 2004 K1200RS (Blue/White) with only 23,000 miles on it and with Olin shocks and other extras, will be up for sale soon. :grin:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lowndes

eliastfk93,

 

I drove a '99 R1100S for two years then was intrigued with the K's. Bought a '00 K1200RS "Checker Cab", "Flying Brick", aka "Electric Jet" about 16 months ago.

 

From all I've read about these bikes, there is one common problem; the dreaded O-ring failure. This is between the crankshaft and clutch, very close to the RMS. Time and miles make the soft neoprene harden and lose the seal, then engine oil gets on the clutch and it starts slipping. The telltale sign is oil on the tranny/clutch seam on the right side. You have to split the bike and remove the clutch to access and replace it. Be sure to replace it with a Viton O-ring same size. Cheap part but the labor is about $1500.

 

Other than that, the OEM Showa shocks are gone at about 35K miles, Wilburs will be about $1,500. The OEM brake lines are a failure waiting to happen at 15 years, Spiegler or Galfer lines are about $250 for the DIY kit. The plastic fuel quick disconnects eventually split spraying gas on you and need to be replaced with metal units, about $100. A Corbin seat will help, too.

 

The bike is pure joy to drive. It's not light, 670 lbs I think, but once you start rolling the weight disappears. My R11S and R11RT just sit.

 

Wish I had a better pic but this is where you can look for the leak:

 

PsLm2-SgD8hlPJXXKPWh-Ry_lapeocbmR5JME5Q4OthE7UhZ5__FqIRU9STDp5uastnBxpHMb5O2Kkm2lEj7gQ6_q4Z8kvBny0Hd_tm0yVEf178gNo3M31Aj2GdPNRGw6kAULF_5GyhppvD_bocqYA1lBfkz6qL40M8TEakJiUT3r_jxQXdl0rxFJrX6y2X6BOIHWw_DKS-rgqAmOjgX97G-6S2Do8AKbrApg9fOjgnEZK_v_SA1Ix6Vn8Kh4nU2F4h6Xg3pbPSLdVij3_uVpUsdHkFG_6WXnLx-WNP5c1QbgSDYGo1VFQUnUzPUQOtUFW7iV2iZYLsIw0dlaxuJ4NpL5qKP8PtwmOJ75CrmTI5hFxKVJURr-kdglU4yPFO0XmhWyuIongxOBzx3dM_l6Ras306lQ9KWqyAxH23_a-RDJ1QenaJEpnqsFsrcjb0S_NOpdm8fmxDmWvsN_hPBrxgjrYnX3NR_WCgn-P5_HfLiBrmZgLbS04KpkiL9HszAHjVn8yDGCXRhXVuxl5F4WQlXZsSF247NRCWOnO3oZWXyFhFp8pydqF03D5X4MA78AmHI5F7dor3ObpWl-jIaaYgFvv3LKWb3jL_CunHTSDX0QSeE_00Zlqg4QhOmcZYJg0F6sIL2FfCUE1v_-xr2DrY2KxPBATP2Cw=w305-h627-no?.jpg

 

NHJxEI2FVFdNLILQuvZKwGkygZF48g20LB95VWmFPv9JMjsEMcb0CZXgWioc5fwBdfkPu3hnBz-d9tnwcvR_DmpXnL_JXnp3xj6grGvO8cQEY6qiCXWMXVORu1UqCF-EkCdpMLGkFhQYmcqOCIHIItn2UxoZ1jJj71Y8bu4GvHJNLyT-tpIiPYBrqo5GyqpX7P5JSk5E08eT5vSurcWrv0ywt3gSNfofVlHqTGS3EyEv58nC43OocZrhZL01OhFJgEieJ7uxU6K_vqSXpWa1v1QGGxnDMFFVIx9BctIeZQQbYj9afI1AhR7clF4I6erRLLis8oWwz_8NhJzkfJA5svCtQ_-8tRDWWcsxygdoZ-4P8HqpiO3lHdafoUKYzWDvg-GoLB91jvrhrvrJgT5hupR28nB0C8Jl0xdRgoJPhg-mDbK3x1FDbHjkeoDTTb8eQiKf6sKMn4WdMmLa65kSk05jTwx4xMG8e94BWFySUo0GPnrABqnGCgjvmojsIvNMMsUIZu4W3q7evb_y0nVyzjJdRTspeGLvx85CkOamV6ghctdep2S7P_3wVpI4G41zG-GEV7AMeTP6-6FHKD9Au90adVgrntHhVaQ9LuiyIOH2r04_q7YOsB87aLf2t08JhUt5bIn4Qmt9-kTB9xTa6O3t1GvjFgY-1g=w835-h627-no?.jpg

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...