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Discussion Starter #1
Anybody have or has had a BMW 1100-1150-1200 RT? Curious about comfort level, cost of maintenance, and how often the bike needs work other then the usual oil, tire, spark plug changes.
 

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R1150rt

I have an '04 R1150RT.

Very comfortable to ride. I have everything stock on it (all my $$$ goes into my Ducati). The weather protection is nothing short of amazing. I used to live in northern Nevada and it gets really cold there and it served me well. It is also a great bike two-up.
They are simple bikes. There are a lot of folks who don't like the linked brakes but I don't mind them. If you get an 1150 I would recommend the later model ones with two spark and the single spark ones had surging problems.
Maint interval is 6k. You can do most of it yourself. Oil changes are simple but I don't like removing the tupperware (I live in a condo and don't have a garage). If the dealer does it then it costs $$$. If you are semi-mechanically inclined then you can do most of it yourself. I don't have time to do all of my own work (again...the Duc).
The engines run forever. It is oil cooled so she does not like to idle.
She also does not like short rides around town. When I do those on my RT she runs really rough. She is happiest around 80. They handle really, really well. The brakes are an all or nothing affair compared to other bikes but you get used to it.
If you have any other questions please let me know. I hope this helps out!

james
'04 R1150RT
'99 Ducati 900 Supersport
 

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I have a 98 1100GS. Pretty much the same motor.
You need to adjust the valves and sync the throttle bodies but all in all they are no more difficult to service and maintain than a Harley.
Mine is a single spark and does not surge. (some do, some don't)
Oil and fluid changes are easy. (if you have the right filter wrench)
Brake pads last a lot longer. They do recommend you change the fluid every year though.
Be prepared to do some searching for tools if you plan to do your own servicing though. Lots of information available on the web.
If you think aftermarket and accessory parts are expensive for a HD product, wait until you see what BMW stuff goes for.
My closest BMW motorcycle dealer is over 200 miles away and it didn't stop me from buying a BMW to go along with the HD.


heres a couple links that might help:
http://www.oilheadsclub.org/tech.php
http://www.bmwst.com/

Ride Safe,
Vettster
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks James. There is a 1998 BMW 1100 RT with ABS at our local dealership. Has 46,600 miles and the guy that owns it has had the bike in for it's regular service since new. He's in his mid 50's so I don't think the bike has been abused. Always wanted one of these and am half heartedly thinking of putting an offer on it. I only highway ride. Never been an in town rider if I can help it.
 

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Ridin' with the King
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I had an '03 R1150RT and it was a great bike in every way. The brakes on those bikes are THE best in the motorcycle world IMHO. If you do your own service the price is managable although a little higher than a HD due to cost of parts and accessories. If you pay for service then they are kind of pricey but who does that right? Right :) If I ever find one at a good price at the right time I will own another one. I have had 2 BMW motorcycles and they are definitely what I would ride if there were no Harleys to be had. Peace -Frank
 

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I rode an RT1100 for a couple of years, in addition to my Ultra.

It was a nice bike, but I did not like the seating. It slid me forward into the tank and gave me a reverse wedgie all the time. So I added some gel to the seat and that made a difference. It was a fast comfortable well handling bike. I did miss having large floorboards to move my feet around on. The electric height adjustable windshield was a nice "toy". The heated grips convinced me to put some on the Harley. Not as much storage as the Ultra, even with saddlebags and top box, and a tank bag.

I don't say this to demean the bike or BMW riders in anyway, but all in all, I'd rather have my Ultra. Although it was a fine machine, it just was not me.

I also had a ZX1100. Now that's a fast bike. Too uncomfortable for me these days. At 46+ years, I just don't have the flexibility to fit that bike for hours and miles at a time. When the radiator fan kicked in, it could make the Ultra feel cool.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Pan......I know what you mean. I wanted one of these bikes when I was in my early twenties. Never ended up with one for whatever reason. I am thinking at 50 maybe the seating position would be too uncomfortable for my knees. Seems anymore that 300 miles a day is plenty and that's on my FLHT.
 

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The seat does make you slide forward. HD's and BMW's are alike in that most owners modify them to suit their own needs. I put shims in the front of the seat to lift it up some. Helps out with the reverse wedgie. My only prob with HD are the forward controls. I just can't get used to them. I do love the Street Rod though. I can't help but stop in my local HD dealer and check them out when I can.
That is the problem. Too many bikes and not enough time!
 

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Had an R 1100 RT, with the same seat problems (got a heated Corbin, that fixed it). It had the best weather protection of any bike I've ever ridden. Fast, stable, excellent brakes, a slightly clunky shift. I didn't think parts were all that expensive, although there's no equivalent of the HD aftermarket. A very different bike from HD's.

The K-bikes, on the other hand, are very maintenance-intensive. 12,000 mile service on a K 1100 LT is about 10 hours flat rate.
 

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R1150rt

Maintenance is never ending. Brakes require replacing fluid every year and unless you are a rocket scientist you will have to pay the dealer big bucks to do it..Not to mention throttles bodies and stuff I can't even remember....Just try to find the battery... Ergonomics are for youngsters. ...........The most fun bike I've ever owned...:yes:
 

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I had a non abs 1150R for over a year.
I liked the six speed for cruising.

I liked the way it handled when riding solo.

I didn't like it for riding two up.

Too much weight up high with five gallons of gas and a passenger.

Ok when moving, but slow speed maneuvering with that weight up high really bothered me, being a short guy.

I did not have any problems with it.
Adjusted the valves a couple times. Easy to do on this model.

I tested a couple 1150RT's.
Loved the ride but the mirror location and size bothered me.
I heard many complaints about the linked brakes especially when in sand or gravel.
 

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mfn said:
Thanks James. There is a 1998 BMW 1100 RT with ABS at our local dealership. Has 46,600 miles and the guy that owns it has had the bike in for it's regular service since new. He's in his mid 50's so I don't think the bike has been abused. Always wanted one of these and am half heartedly thinking of putting an offer on it. I only highway ride. Never been an in town rider if I can help it.
I had a '96 R1100RT. It was the best highway bike I've ever had, thanks mostly to the fantastic electric windshield. The fairing also provides great wind/weather protection without turning the bike into a Goldwing-style road barge. Like everyone else said, the stock seat sucks. But this can easily be changed with an aftermarket seat, or simply a spacer up front. I went with a BMW comfort seat and could ride all day without pain. I also added highway pegs --there are lots of kits to do that as well. I could ride my RT much faster than I dare to push my FXST, mostly because its ABS brakes were so good. Combined with the telelever front suspension, you could really stop RIGHT NOW without any brake dive or risk of skidding. Tank range is also very good. You can also load the bike to the gills and it still handles great. The 700 watt generator handles all kinds of accessories. I had Piaa 110w driving lights on mine.

Maintenance is pretty easy. There's not much to do unless the bike breaks down big time, which is fairly rare. Oil changes are simple -- you don't have to remove the fairing side panels -- you just have to remove 6 allen bolts that hold the small undercowl on the bike. Other than valve clearance checks every 6k -- which you can easily do yourself, there's not much maintenance involved other than changing the engine oil, and transmission/final drive fluids once a year (again, very simple).

A good site website for info:
www.bmwsporttouring.com

 

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bmw

hi i have 03 gs adv
good bit of kit ,i only use it in the rain and winter,poor thing only been cleaned once since i got it 2 years ago, covered in wax , waxoil. its a mess:nope: . cleaned a little off the other day and it still looks new underneath, they even said at the dealers (bit dirty that one):265: . they jetwashed it and it still looked bad.:confused: but if you use them as intended how can you keep it clean.
 

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I have been in the market for a BMW also. Looking at the R1100S. Figured it's time to replace the Springer with something new and different but can't seem to get the local BMW dealers to deal. Oh well.......
Guess I'll stop by the local HD shop and look at the V-Rod Night Rod.

MikeyB
 

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I own an '05 R1200RT. It's nothing less than an awesome machine. It's wicked fast, handles extremely well once you get rid of the idea that a Harley Davidson handles at all, is happy cruising at 100 on the highway, has brakes that are meant to stop like "right now", and the bike is much more fun to ride than my Fatboy.

That said, they might be a little more costly to maintain. Oil changes every 6000 miles along with a valve adjustment. Cheap if you do it yourself, $$$ if a dealer does it. Even with oil changes that long, they have a reputation for lasting forever. They are expensive to have work done on them but so is a Harley if you can find a competent dealer.

My bike is very comfortable and the ride is MUCH better than my HD. It is a LOT more bike than any HD IMO and it will make you a better rider, again, IMO. HD's are more like motor scooters after owning the RT since May. The HD is fun but the BMW is another world. Another free opinion.
 

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MikeyB said:
I have been in the market for a BMW also. Looking at the R1100S. Figured it's time to replace the Springer with something new and different but can't seem to get the local BMW dealers to deal. Oh well.......
Guess I'll stop by the local HD shop and look at the V-Rod Night Rod.

MikeyB
With the imminent release of the new R1200S, there will be some killer deals on used 1100s if you don't mind buying privately.
 

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While I love my HD, I've been lusting after this hot little K1200R that has caught my eye. It would be a nice bike to keep on the side.:wootdnc:
 

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Cincy BMW closing..

Just read on two other forums that the Cincy BMW dealer is closing at the end of this week.

May be some deals there...
 

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I got some saddle time on a 05' r1200rt. Seriously nice bike! Strangley, in the end, I didn't really like that much. It just came across as so much vanilla ice cream, utterly devoid of character. But, for touring bike with sporting ablities, it's a winner for some. The R1200ST is also a very nice ride. The K1200S would be my choice for sustained high speed travel (but I don't have an autobahn around here). The aerodynamics of the K1200S at speed were fantasic. BMW really needs to expand the dealer base if they want to grow. There are to many non-user serviceable systems on their bikes these days. Try $200-400 to bleed all the circuits on the power ABS brake system, DOH!.
 

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mfn said:
Anybody have or has had a BMW 1100-1150-1200 RT? Curious about comfort level, cost of maintenance, and how often the bike needs work other then the usual oil, tire, spark plug changes.

I have both a '94 1200 Sportster and a '98 BMW R1100RT. I have had the sporty for 4 years and have had good luck with it. Only stranded me twice-once with a faulty starter relay and once when the battery went bad. Bought the RT in July of this year with 17.5 k miles. Came with a Haynes manual. The seat on this thing is torture-I am getting an airhawk pad for it. If you make good money and are mechanically inclined then perhaps a BMW might be for you. BMW parts and shop work is expensive. The brakes must be bled every year without fail. Mine were not and one day I noticed a drop of fluid on the underside of the front master cylinder. $200 plus for the master cylinder and over $200 for labor. This was right after I had all the throttle cables replaced for big bucks and the throttle bodies synched. I am now waiting on a new Odyssey battery. The main problem with some of the 1100 and 1150RT's is that the clutch disc hub and trans input shaft self-destruct on a certain small percentage of them. That's a $2500 repair. I think it was the wrong bike for me as I am in the wrong income bracket for these bikes and also I was not used to working on them as they are more complicated than the Harley. I think a Harley and a Japanese bike for other pursuits is the way to go.
 
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