ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Bikes > Old's Cool > Airheads
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-26-2009, 11:10 PM   #1
mphoppe OP
Hops
 
mphoppe's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2004
Location: Tucson, AZ - Dirt bike heaven!
Oddometer: 577
Reverse engineering: oilhead to airhead?

After a couple of 1100gs's (like 'em), multiple 1150gs's and 1150 GSA's (love 'em) my dirt bikes (XR650R's) and their simplicity have started encroaching on my local street riding. A recent experiment with a 2006 KLR (never owned one before) for commuting my 200-300 mostly in town miles/week has me a bit hooked ...but longing for the refinement (and return) to a BMW airhead.

My first bike was an R100CS and I had a brief relationship with an '88 R100GS in the early 90's before fully turning to the dark side (GS's) about 7 years ago.

1987 Kawasaki tecnology (my 2006 is unchanged) vs. a mid 90's (nice) R100GS or GSPD for at least twice the price. Maintenance is not an issue for me, I love working on the bikes...thoughts on the riding experience and suitability for a commuter greatly appreciated...
__________________
Mike

2006 1150 GS Adventure
2006 CRF 250X
2010 KTM 690R
1995 R100GS (sold)
2007 XR650R as new, for sale
2001 XR650R Desert Bike
2006 KLR 650 Commuter (Sold)
2004 XR650R (sold)
2002 XR650R (sold)
Pro Racing Photos http://mikephotos.smugmug.com/
mphoppe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-26-2009, 11:52 PM   #2
squish
Out of the office.
 
Joined: Dec 2003
Location: Where the Ghetto meets the sea.
Oddometer: 6,094
I've made it no secret that I loth the current crop of BMW's
Really just about every BMW made since the mid 90's

The first thing on my list of hate is the preposterous front end.
It's wrong on just about every level.
Heavy, slow steering, no feedback, extra complexity for the pure sake of complexity...

Now that said. with out a doubt the most comfortable motorcycle i've ever been on was a R1150GS adventure.
That's physical comfort not confidence.

The move "down" to an airhead is not easy if you like the feeling of the front end of the oilhead bikes.

Airheads on a good day are called rubber cows for a reason.
And AH will shake more, there will be more shaft jacking (unless you go for the later bikes)
Since your coming from a BMW you already know that you can get parts pretty easy but they will cost you an arm and leg.

With proper maintenance an airhead will last for years.
And with it's bone simple system it's super easy to work on them
and fix them, even by the side of the road.

You already know some about the airhead, I'd say go for it.

Me after getting my airhead gs I put the DL650 in long term storage.
(it's worth more to me to keep then sell it for the prices they are going for now.)
__________________
On vacation for a spell
squish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2009, 04:21 AM   #3
Mugwest
.
 
Mugwest's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2005
Location: 3rd Ring of Buzztopia
Oddometer: 6,014
Quote:
Originally Posted by squish
I've made it no secret that I loth the current crop of BMW's
Really just about every BMW made since the mid 90's

The first thing on my list of hate is the preposterous front end.
It's wrong on just about every level.
Heavy, slow steering, no feedback, extra complexity for the pure sake of complexity...
There's a lot in this quote, Squish, and almost none of it reflects reality

Telelever front ends are a geek-out conspiracy, yeah?



lousy fuel injection
__________________
.
Mugwest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2009, 07:51 AM   #4
Wirespokes
Beemerholics Anonymous
 
Wirespokes's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2002
Location: Jackson's Bottom Oregon
Oddometer: 8,032
I've ventured into the world of oilheadedness, and even though I like them, I'm definitely more of an airhead kinda guy. Why? Partly it's the non-tuneability of FI - sort of the whole mentality behind the new bikes - "hands off! Ve know vhat's best, and ve vill zee it stays that vay!" At least it seems that way. I guess it was more an issue with the surging of ten years ago.

But there's also the expense of all that high tech stuff that can leave you stranded, waiting hours for an expensive tow. I'm not much into the high pressure fuel pump buzzing inside the gas tank, and high pressure fuel lines that, if they spring a leak, can torch the bike in a flash.

And then they feel top heavy. Even though they absorb the bumps and give a very smooth and safe ride, and stop well, it's not THAT much better than a well set up airhead.

Everything about them is more expensive including the tires. But you know, the thing I like best about the airheads is the feel of the motor - it's hard to describe, but just feels 'so right' cruising down the highway. And then there's the looks - the airheads LOOK like motorcycles are supposed to look.
__________________
Wanted: Dead, smashed, crashed or trashed gauges
BMW GAUGE REPAIRS - TACH*SPEEDO*CLOCK*VOLT METER *PODs & LIGHT BOARD*
Wirespokes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2009, 08:17 AM   #5
The Raven
Banned
 
The Raven's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Off the map,
Oddometer: 4,811
I had a R1100gs and hated it for all of the above reasons..could do a 500mi day..but not with the compromise. I learned about riding off road very well. I even got on the cover of the April o6 (07?) copy of BMWON with that bike. It taught me quite a bit about CG balance, but with that bike once you got off the CG it WAS going down and was a bitch getting back up. I added crash bars just to save the valve covers for when I had to let it fall over.

I can't wait to get my nice light G/s
The Raven is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2009, 08:41 AM   #6
Uncle Ernie
Beastly Adventurer
 
Uncle Ernie's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2007
Location: Asheville NC
Oddometer: 3,978
If you GAVE me a BMW made after 1995, I'd sell it immediately.

In my dottage, I've come to love light and simple more and more. For just around town, a KLR or any small twin or single is great (and FUN).
For anything more, a simple BMW twin is great. You change the ding-dong oil and do an occasional valve rocker look-see. BFD. Lots of guys around here have sold their newer, bigger, heavier (especially top-heavy) BMW's and gone to smaller, lower, lighter BMW's (and the occasional KLR).
__________________
LOOK OUT IT'S COMING THIS WAY!
Uncle Ernie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2009, 08:51 AM   #7
mphoppe OP
Hops
 
mphoppe's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2004
Location: Tucson, AZ - Dirt bike heaven!
Oddometer: 577
True observations on the 1150's (I never did go for a 1200, I've put way too many of them back together after even minor falls, they just don';t crash well )

My 2002 and 2005 GS Adventures alone saw 100k mi of, shall we say extreme (read stupid) riding, often times going where only real dirt bikes should go (XR's not KLR's, sorry) including way too many miles of deep sand. BTW, these are not bikes to learn how to ride off road......but I didn't know that at the time...ignorance is...well, still ignorance.

I have to admit, my current mount ('06 1150 GSA) really is a great distance & camping machine. The fact that I "decorated" it was merely to dissuade me from ever doing anything extreme on it. http://www.simboliphotography.com/Mo...07241531_HBhSC

All that to say, the primary mission of the possible R100GS is to replace the KLR (which has been thourghly reworked with suspension, LED's, HID's etc) and be a 3-5 days/week (60/mi/day = 2 hour seat time) in town commuter. While the KLR is amazing for what it is (including 62mpg and dirt cheap) the emotional attachment has not happened. Too many years on BMW's maybe?
__________________
Mike

2006 1150 GS Adventure
2006 CRF 250X
2010 KTM 690R
1995 R100GS (sold)
2007 XR650R as new, for sale
2001 XR650R Desert Bike
2006 KLR 650 Commuter (Sold)
2004 XR650R (sold)
2002 XR650R (sold)
Pro Racing Photos http://mikephotos.smugmug.com/
mphoppe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2009, 10:51 AM   #8
Uncle Ernie
Beastly Adventurer
 
Uncle Ernie's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2007
Location: Asheville NC
Oddometer: 3,978
Well, for commuting, I found an R65 to be great...

...but I use a Royal Enfield for around town now. Go figure.
__________________
LOOK OUT IT'S COMING THIS WAY!
Uncle Ernie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2009, 09:35 PM   #9
bgoodsoil
Dare to be Stupid
 
bgoodsoil's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Washington, DC, USA
Oddometer: 4,420


dern, I didn't know NASA made motorcycles.
__________________
'85 BMW r80G/S--Another G/S on the road--Central America on a Shoestring--Nova Scotia on a Shoestring--Never Leave a Man's Behind

Proud SmugMug User Support ADV: Don't give those cheap bums your discount code
bgoodsoil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2009, 01:20 AM   #10
Kokopelli
Yeah, right!
 
Kokopelli's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2003
Location: Rapaura
Oddometer: 4,603
Well, I have both and I like both, for different reasons. There is no need to choose.
__________________
R1150GS
R80GS Basic
__________________
Kokopelli is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2009, 07:03 AM   #11
mphoppe OP
Hops
 
mphoppe's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2004
Location: Tucson, AZ - Dirt bike heaven!
Oddometer: 577
Nasa does make motorcycles for exploring the surface of other planets...there called XR650R's ! But I digress...

__________________
Mike

2006 1150 GS Adventure
2006 CRF 250X
2010 KTM 690R
1995 R100GS (sold)
2007 XR650R as new, for sale
2001 XR650R Desert Bike
2006 KLR 650 Commuter (Sold)
2004 XR650R (sold)
2002 XR650R (sold)
Pro Racing Photos http://mikephotos.smugmug.com/
mphoppe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2009, 01:01 PM   #12
HammerD0wn
Go cry me a river...
 
HammerD0wn's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2009
Location: Dark side
Oddometer: 101
It's called a R100S.....it's pretty, timeless, tough, has style, commutes well, did I say pretty.....go get one.

HammerD0wn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2009, 06:17 PM   #13
squish
Out of the office.
 
Joined: Dec 2003
Location: Where the Ghetto meets the sea.
Oddometer: 6,094
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mugwest
There's a lot in this quote, Squish, and almost none of it reflects reality

Telelever front ends are a geek-out conspiracy, yeah?

lousy fuel injection
I don't think it's a conspiracy.
BMW just saw a hole in the motorcycle market place
Convince a small number of people that a wonky front end is the right thing for them to do. And it's working, sort of.
BMW sales did grow with that weird front end, But is that saying that they wouldn't have sold more with a more normal front end.

If the telelever front was so good. It would be adopted across the motorcycle spectrum much as the other suspension systems have....
There was a time before swingarms swang,
Then there were two shock, then only one shock.... Can you see where I'm going.

Me I don't buy the koolaid. I've sipped from the cup and the drink tasted rancid.
__________________
On vacation for a spell
squish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2009, 08:39 PM   #14
Lobby
Viel Spass, Vato!
 
Lobby's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2003
Location: San Antonio, Tx
Oddometer: 27,903


Buncha whiny curmudgeons, the lot of you.

Lobby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2009, 09:00 PM   #15
Max Headroom
lost in the '70s
 
Max Headroom's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2008
Location: New Zealand
Oddometer: 512
The hardcore still insist that the last real BMW was built in 1969 . . . .
__________________
'76 R90S silver smoke
'75 R90/6 hybrid

'Skills are learned, talent is ornate.' Billie
Max Headroom is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 06:37 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014