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Old 02-15-2009, 10:08 AM   #1
Motowalt OP
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800GS vs 1150GS

Who's owned both?

Since the 800's have been on the road for a while now and riders have been able to put some miles on them, I'm interested in your honest comparisons between the two including any mechanical issues.

My current (and only) bike is the 1150 and the new 800 is enticing
The approx. 100# weight savings and the "livlier" vertical twin vs the "more sedate" opposed twin are the most attractive aspects to me.

I only ride solo, mostly on road, average ride is probably about 300 miles, with the ocaisional 1,000 mile trip; but I want to do more exploring in the dirt and the 800 appears to be a good all around choice. My last true dirt bike was an XR400...

Let me know what you think...
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Old 02-15-2009, 02:29 PM   #2
EdOriginal
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Since no one else is responding....

I'm in the same boat...wanting to get back to one bike, but more off-roading. Have a 1150GS and KLR, sold the KLR yesterday. That was a good combination having a KLR & 1150GS but the 1150GS was just getting too heavy for me for any off-roading and KLR was not a good solution (comfort-wise) for long over the road travels (ie: planned trip from Atlanta to Portland, OR).

Bottomline: I was fortunate to test ride an F800 for 8 hours and in my opinion it's a GREAT bike. The F800 will handle 80+ mph on freeways all day long with no sweat, but heavy luggage (ie: Jesse's), long saddle days would be more comfortable on the 1150GS. My 1150 is not even straining to deal with 80-90 mph loaded down. Never any wind buffeting on the 1150GS but would except to be getting blown around by big 18 wheelers on the F800, but never encountered that on a 100+ mile freeway ride.

On the negative side my 1150GS is set up exactly the way I need it and the F800 would probably take $3,500+ in farkeling to get it set up like my the 1150GS. On the positive side, my 1150GS gets 35 to 37 mpg whereas the F800 would probably provide 55 mpg.

Major changes for me would be:
1) Major seat upgrade
2) Mid height windscreen
3) Jesse's
4) Bars
5) Knobbies

My opinion is you'll definately give up some comfort factor on the F8 but should expect that with a smaller F800GS.
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Old 02-15-2009, 02:54 PM   #3
WoodWorks
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R1100 GS relevant?

I owned a 1998 R1100GS, not the 1150. But I had it for 8 years, 72,000 miles, took it up to Prudhoe Bay, down into Copper Canyon, across the country and all around the western U.S. I loved that bike. But my F800 will easily do all the 1100 did, and more. Yes, it's probably not as stable on the Interstate playing with big rigs in crosswinds. But off pavement it's in another league entirely. And after having my final drive crater on me (and take the transmission with it), I'm happy to lube and adjust (and replace) a chain every once in a while. From the description of your riding style, I'd say you'll never look back.

David
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:13 AM   #4
nedodjija
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WoodWorks
I owned a 1998 R1100GS, not the 1150. But I had it for 8 years, 72,000 miles, took it up to Prudhoe Bay, down into Copper Canyon, across the country and all around the western U.S. I loved that bike. But my F800 will easily do all the 1100 did, and more. Yes, it's probably not as stable on the Interstate playing with big rigs in crosswinds. But off pavement it's in another league entirely. And after having my final drive crater on me (and take the transmission with it), I'm happy to lube and adjust (and replace) a chain every once in a while. From the description of your riding style, I'd say you'll never look back.

David
Talking about R1100GS. I assume that F800 will do everythig better than R1100GS because my Wee will do everything better than R1100GS. I know that my Wee was designed almost 10 years after R1100GS was, but I am just saying that I had a chance to ride R1100GS right after riding my Wee and I was surprised how much better Wee was. Now, knowing that F800 is better off road than Wee, and has more ponies under the tank, I assume that F800 would be way better than R1100GS. I bet it is better than R1150 off road as well. Why not get it especially if you are only riding one up.
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:35 AM   #5
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Had 'em Both!

I had an 02 1150GS and loved it. It was in Alaska and down to Copper Canyon as well. All around the western US. You could pack LOTS on it with the Jesse's and with the custom seat it was rideable all day long. I sold it last year and bought an F8 this year. I REALLY love the F8. I ride 2 up sometimes and it does well. It is a little different 'feeling' 2up than the 1150 but still fun. I've farkeled it a little to make it comfortable with a Rick Mayer seat, higher shield, and it's got the bags to carry all I need, even for 2 up camping. I've put 10K miles on it in about 3 months and wouldn't trade it now. I've had no mechanical problems and have no troubles with adjusting chain, etc myself. My 1150 had the final drive fail while riding so it will be nice to not have that worry.

All that said, if I could afford both I'd have both. Affording only 1, I'll take the F8.
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Old 03-02-2010, 02:38 PM   #6
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R1200GS then F800GS now

I had a 2005 R1200GS and rode it for 30000 miles. It was a great bike on the highway and handled gravel roads fine. I have had a F800GS for 9000 miles and one and a half years, and it is a better choice for me. On the highway and in the twisties it will keep up with anyone and has plenty of power. I have to downshift to pass instead of just rolling on the throttle like I did with the 1200 but the engine loves to rev! In fact I think the Rotax engine is way better than the 2005 R1200GS boxer engine. I get 55+ mpg now instead of 45 with the R1200GS, and the engine is much more responsive.

The F800GS is very well balanced and handles rougher dirt two tracks much better than the 1200GS. One reason I like the F800 is that I could lower the gearing a little by changing the sprockets. I am using a 15 tooth front sprocket and that lowers the gearing about 6%, which results in better handling at slow speeds and that is important to me here in Colorado when the gravel roads get rocky, rutted and bumpy. The F800GS also carries its weight really well; I can’t believe how light and well balanced it feels. I think some of that is due to the rotating mass being parallel to the axles of the bike. When you rev the R1200GS it tends to tip the bike. The F800GS does not do that. All in all I think the F800GS is a great all around bike for Colorado and dual sporting. It gets you wherever you want to go with whatever luggage you want to carry, on road or off, is really well balanced and very versatile, a big improvement for me over the R1200GS. But I avoid long cruises on Interstates.
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Old 02-15-2009, 03:02 PM   #7
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F800GS vs the other GSs...my view

Well, having spent a few hours on the earlier 1100 and 1150GS machines, and then owning an 05 GS, then an 06, 07 and now 08 GS Adventure (the 07 got traded for another Beemer), so now my spouse and 'share' the Adventure and the F800GS. However, since getting the 8GS in early Oct, I have pretty much lived on it, roads or no roads.

As a former KLR owner and having raced and owned a few dirt machines in the past, I can state that the 8GS holds up extremely well to any and all machines, past and present. When compared to many of them, it is the superior machine.

I owned an F800ST for a year (traded early in 08 given the pending, then delayed arrival of the 8GS), so I had no concerns over the motor, and the 8GS is actually 15 hp stronger, which is very much noticeable, and useable.

The two biggest pluses of the 8GS is its size and weight, and versatility. I had some concerns over the 21inch wheel on the road at speed, and to some degree, still do - the winds will impact slightly, but its not a major issue. For long distance touring, I still believe the 1150 and 1200 models provide more stability and for many, more comfort, especially for two-up or heavy load duties.

But, for single rider duties, with all the luggage options available already for the 8GS, I will have no hesitation in loading it up and pointing it anywhere that the 1200s have, or would have gone, pavement or otherwise.

The 8GS is very light, and even adding a good load doesn't make it unstable or slow (trust me) and when the dirt gets loose and the rocks bigger, that 21in wheel, light weight and dirt-bike characteristics of the 8GS will come to the fore, quickly. The 8GS is a hoot on the road (almost as much fun as my now departed Multistrada) and off road, its just a slightly 'bigger' dirt bike.

My fuel consumption average is close to 60mpg (Imperial gallon), the Scott Oiler takes care of the big long chain that has not yet required adjustment after 3500kms and that has been that.

I put on the large BMW skid plate (probably the best and widely available, at least up here), a SW-Motech Quick Release rack that lets me use GIVI or SHAD top-case adapters or a wide rack for the BIG duffel bags. A set of the GIVI engine guards went on quickly and work well, and provide convenient mounting points for other planned farkles.

A couple of RAM mounts host the GPS and the cameras and that is about it right now. Next up, probably, is a set of removable side pannier brackets, so I can use either soft or hard luggage, when needed. If not travelling distances, the machine stays stripped for the hard-core off-road stuff. Oh yeh, going to get either a BMW Touring Shield or other after-market item for the longer trips... So far, the stock seat has proven just fine, a sheepskin helps for a full day of riding.

Complaints, none yet...I just think of it as the 'smaller' but more capable member of the GS clan.

Cheers, Bruce
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Old 02-15-2009, 04:48 PM   #8
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I mostly avoid interstates in my travels so the lighter weight and being blown around by big trucks doesn't concern me, but is something to be aware of going over to the lighter bike.

A Scottoiler would definitely be a good addition...I hadn't considered that one.
So far, the responses sound just like what I'm hoping to hear...

I have my 1150 farkled up just where I want it and would have to start all over, but hey, that's all part of the fun.
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Old 02-15-2009, 06:12 PM   #9
Harry Swan
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I've got both

I spent a few hours today riding my 1150 and f800 GS's ... Needed to run them before it gets really wet here. For how you ride I'd have to say the F800GS would be more fun, but as others have noted I'd be hard pressed to leave the R1150GS in the garage if I were riding to the Yukon this summer. Trips from LA through out the Southwest would be a blast on the F8 and knowing I could take off down any road I come across is just sweet. That's something I now hesitate to do on the 1150 mostly because of my last spill on the Dempster Highway in '05. I spent 30 minutes waiting for someone to help me pick the GS up and I really don't want to chance injury and that feeling again. I am a solitary rider by nature and I did break a rib in that Dempster crash, so take that as a FWIW.

Bottom line, from the three months I've had the F800 is it's become my favorite bike and I just might have to sell the 1150. I'll let you know but it's a definite thumbs up for the F8GS over the R1150GS from me.
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Old 02-15-2009, 06:38 PM   #10
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so how does it compare picking up my 1150 vs a 800. latter is a bit lighter, but not a huge amount. riding by myself and not being able to pick my 1150 by myself limits where I can go. it is the only reason why I would want to switch.
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Old 02-15-2009, 07:13 PM   #11
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I had both

I sold my '04 1150GS after purchasing my F800GS. I really loved the 1150GS and took it on some great trips. On one of the trips we took a 200 mile dirt road excursion through Utah where I found that I wished I were on a bike that was "dirtier". (We were completely loaded up with camping gear, and supplies for a couple of week on the road)

Now that I own the F8GS and have put a couple of thousand miles on it I am very pleased. While I would not describe it as a "dirt bike", it is a outstanding dual sport bike. Blasting down the road at 80 MPH or moderate trail riding at slow speed is not a problem. Bottom line, for me and my riding style, I love this bike.

I have installed the following stuff:
GIT skidplate and engine guards
Throttlemister
Barkbuster hand guards
Cal Scientific windshield (large)
Jessie safari saddle bags and large top box (with quick release)
GPS mount

I am waiting on the following:
Comm system (StarCom digital)
Sargent seat (I'm on the list)

Planned trip:
Alaska, late June '09 from LOUISIANA
(that would be from the Gulf Of Mexico to Prudeau Bay)
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Old 02-16-2009, 07:57 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Swan
I spent a few hours today riding my 1150 and f800 GS's ... Needed to run them before it gets really wet here. For how you ride I'd have to say the F800GS would be more fun, but as others have noted I'd be hard pressed to leave the R1150GS in the garage if I were riding to the Yukon this summer. Trips from LA through out the Southwest would be a blast on the F8 and knowing I could take off down any road I come across is just sweet. That's something I now hesitate to do on the 1150 mostly because of my last spill on the Dempster Highway in '05. I spent 30 minutes waiting for someone to help me pick the GS up and I really don't want to chance injury and that feeling again. I am a solitary rider by nature and I did break a rib in that Dempster crash, so take that as a FWIW.

Bottom line, from the three months I've had the F800 is it's become my favorite bike and I just might have to sell the 1150. I'll let you know but it's a definite thumbs up for the F8GS over the R1150GS from me.
I travel more than a fair amount alone and are usually concerned about my physical ability to correct some of my errors in judgement, i.e. pick up my own bike after a drop. I have owned both the 1150 GS Adventure and the 1200 GS Adventure and ridden them on the Dempster and the Dalton, so I wanted to add some other insight into the "pick-up the bike" equation.

Granted, I have absolutely zero experience with the F880GS, other than a butt test or two. From the printed data and the road tests I've read, it seems that the F800GS is about 50 pounds lighter than a standard R1200 GS, which means it's at least 100 pounds lighter than the Adventure version. That's great and a definite positive on the scale of being able to hoist the beast up from a horizontal position. The other consideration that may or may not move things slightly toward the 1150/1200 GS is that with the boxer motor the bike usually, and I do mean usually, isn't quite as horizontal as a narrow, flat sided bike as the F800GS or a KTM 950/990. From personal experience, it does make the big GS easier to set vertical again. I'm not a big hulk of rider that would be able to bench press either of the bikes as I'm 5'8", 160, 60 year old rider in training. Just a thought.

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Old 03-02-2010, 12:58 PM   #13
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800GS or 1200GS

Ok, I am asking this question here and in the GSSpot for comparison. Am considering a BWM and trying to decide between the two. I am a dirt rider but want to be able to do more adventure riding on a dual sport where I can hit the mountain roads, explore dirt roads if I come on them and just ride. Not that interested in highway stuff. Road the 650 and it just didn't have it for me. Oh, am 50 and have been riding dirt, technical single track, some moto. Have been on the road most recently with a Triumph but didn't like it because I like to go off road when the urge hits me. You know?? Anyway just wanted feedback if anyone has experience with both bikes. Also considered something like a KLR or Yamaha 250RR but it seems small to me for the road.

Thanks.
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Old 03-02-2010, 01:00 PM   #14
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http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=433388
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Old 03-02-2010, 03:00 PM   #15
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Question What about Husqvarna

Quote:
Originally Posted by ARDirt
Ok, I am asking this question here and in the GSSpot for comparison. Am considering a BWM and trying to decide between the two. I am a dirt rider but want to be able to do more adventure riding on a dual sport where I can hit the mountain roads, explore dirt roads if I come on them and just ride. Not that interested in highway stuff. Road the 650 and it just didn't have it for me. Oh, am 50 and have been riding dirt, technical single track, some moto. Have been on the road most recently with a Triumph but didn't like it because I like to go off road when the urge hits me. You know?? Anyway just wanted feedback if anyone has experience with both bikes. Also considered something like a KLR or Yamaha 250RR but it seems small to me for the road.

Thanks.
If you are not interested in any slab/highway riding, why consider a bike that is primarily designed for it. I would broaden your search to something like the Husqvarna 610. Much more dirt oriented

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