Friday, April 29, 2016


April has been a VERY busy month with regard to motorcycles.

I started the month by selling my XR600R. I realized that my cranky old knees were not up to off-roading.

Then on April 21st I sold the K1600GT because I could not get comfortable on it (knee pain).

The next day I happened to spot the 2009 R1200GS I used to own so I bought it back. It looked as good as the day I sold it and had only traveled 9,000 miles (total of 21,000).

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Farkling The GT

Besides the great price (a 2015 K1600GT is worth $18-20,000, I paid $15,000) part of the reason I bought the GT was the hope I would spend less farkling it than another GS. During my search I found a 2014 GS. The GS was loaded but since the owner was upgrading to a newer GS he stripped ALL of his farkles off the bike. Blank canvas, yes, but expensive! The GT was also a blank canvas but since it came with bags I figured (hoped) that I would spend less. The GT also had 2 1/2 years of warranty left, the 14 GS 6 months.

When I owned my 96 R1100RT I rode it for the first year with nothing but a tank bag and one bag liner. I could carry my clothing in the bag liner and the bike stuff (cover, lock, oil, tools, etc) along with my off the bike footwear in the other bag. The tank bag contained my extra gloves, face shield, wallet, and whatever else I needed. Latter I added a Marsee seat bag and a BMW top case. I found the more capacity you have the more crap you'll carry.

I'm gonna try my best to get by with less on the GT. Considering how much smaller the GT's tank bag is than either the RT's or any of the GS' tank bags I'm probably gonna have to buy another seat bag.

The Other Bike In My Garage

I should mention that I also own a 1995 Honda XR600R. The XR is street legal (barely) and is a bike I wanted to own since owning a Honda XR650L back in the 90s. The 600 starts out about 50 lbs lighter the 650, has more power, and better gearing. Only drawback (with the 600) is it's kickstart only. Considering that it's never taken me more than 5 kicks (after sitting unridden in my garage for 3-4 months) to start it AND the electrical system is MUCH simpler (than the 650's) I got what I wanted.
Yes, a modern EXC KTM is a MUCH better bike, but I don't feel guilty letting the XR sit unridden in my garage where I would (feel guilty) doing the same with a $10,000 KTM.

Friday, February 25, 2011

My BMW History

Previously I mentioned having owned 9 BMWs. Here they are:
1988 K75S, bought used November 1995 with 8,000 miles, sold May 1996, 16,000 miles.
1996 R1100RTL, bought new from San Jose BMW July 1996, traded-in October 1998 42,000 miles.
1998 R1100GS, bought new from A&S BMW October 1998, sold April 2001 28,000 miles
2002 K1200LTC, bought new from A&S BMW November 2002, sold August 2003 8,000 miles.
1997 R1100GS, bought used (off eBay) July 2004, sold April 2005.
2002 R1150GS Adventure, bought used September 2008, sold August 2009.
2009 R1200GS, bought new from Go AZ (Scottsdale BMW) August 2010, gone Feb 2012.
2009 R1200GS Adventure, bought used (eBay) October 2014, sold April 2015
2015 K1600GT, bought used Feburary 2016.

The 09 Adventure was bought on a whim and was a mistake. I realized the mistake shortly after I bought it and that combined with the fact I didn't have time to ride convinced me to sell it.

I bought the K1600GT because it was a smokin deal! Less than 6 months old, EVERY factory option, and I only paid $15,000 for it!

Farkling...It's an addiction

Like many BMW owners I like to accesorize or "farkle" my bike. I have learned over the years that sometimes getting different brand aftermarket accesories to work with each other can be a challenge. One way to ensure that everything works together is to stay with stock (BMW) accesories. problem with that is BMW parts & accesories are EXPENSIVE! The other problem with BMW accesories is the lack of variety.

When I bought my current BMW I decided to "keep it simple". Funny things is even trying to minimize farkles I seem to have added quite a few. FWIW, with the exception of the tubular engine guards (the dealer installed them as part of the deal) I have added 100% of farkles on my bike.

My bike as built by BMW:
On Board Computer
Heated Grips
Enduro ESA (electric suspension adjustment)
Hand Guards

When I bought my bike I wanted the cast wheels. My reasoning being that they were cheaper (than the spoke wheels) and easier to keep clean. I screwed up here! I really wish I had spent the extra $500 for spoke wheels. There is nothing wrong with my cast wheels, it's simply a desire for spoke wheels driving the desire. Problem is a pair of spoke wheels (new from BMW) is about $2500! A nice used pair will go for $1500-2000. So....I'll wait.

Modifications, accesories, ect. (and how I bought them)

BMW 12-17 Liter Tankbag (new)
BMW GS Adventure Head Guards (used)
BMW GS Adventure Panniers & Mounts (bags-new, mounts-used)
BMW GS Adventure Winglets (new)
BMW GS Adventure Windshield (used)
BMW GS Adventure Footpegs (used)
Hammerhead Shift Lever (new)
SW-Motech Light Mounts with Hella Micro DE Fog Lights (new)
MC Products Low Mount Rear Rack & Pillion Luggage Rack (new & used)
Touratech Handlebar Risers (new)
Touratech Cockpit Cover (used)
Touratech Rear Fender Extension/License Plate Holder (new)
Touratech Fuel Line Guards (new)
Wunderlich Extenda Fender (new)
Osram 65 watt H7 headlight bulbs (new)
Maier Rear Fender Splash Guard (new)
Throttlemeister Throttle Lock (new)
Eastern Beaver PC8 Fuse Panel & Wiring harness (new)
Garmin Zumo 450 GPS (used)

To date I'm very happy with my GS. It's comfortable (I can do a 700+ mile day on the stock seat) and entertaining to ride. It starts conversations where ever I go, not something I can say about every BMW I've ever owned. With ONLY 105 HP it has plenty of power for my needs, better yet the power is instantly accessable.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Getting Started

Hello, my name is Steve and I am a motorcyclist. I have been riding for over 40 years. Starting riding in the dirt on a Honda Trail 90 in the field next to my house when I was 13, graduated to the street, and never looked back.

I'm currently riding a 2009 BMW R1200GS. This is my 7th BMW and my 4th GS. I firmly believe that the BMW GS is the best streetbike on the planet.

I do about 90% of my own maintaince and 100% of the modifications on my bike. I've learned (the hard way) that it's hard to find a good mechanic and harder still to get him to work on your bike. At this time there are only 3 BMW dealerships that I would recommend WITHOUT HESITATION to another BMW owner. I'm not saying that you cannot take your bike to another dealer and receive good service, not at all. What I'm saying is based on my experience these are the only dealerships that I will deal with given an option. They are: Iron Horse BMW in Tucson, AZ, Ozzie's BMW in Chico, CA, and San Jose BMW in San Jose, CA. These three dealerships have been around and will continue to be around for a long time to come.