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Old 02-16-2010, 12:23 PM   #1
sellmeyer OP
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BMW F650GSR - Rallye Project Bike

eh, hello F650 enthusiasts

Just over a year ago I set out to replace the suspension on my 2001 F650GS Dakar and begin building a rallye kit for the bike...by July 2009 I had my Dakar on WP suspension front and rear. I couldn't ride it, however, because I gave away my front fairing bracket and ran short on time for the project and didn't get a replacement put together. The Dakar sat, unused for the whole riding season and was rotting away in the basement until Christmas 09.

For the past six weeks or so I have been working with more consistency and hope to have the bike completed by June and at least ridable by mid April when the snow melts.

So for now, I'll introduce the F650GSR...an american rallye conversion of the popular F650GS.

Highlights of what I hope to complete by June include the following:
  • WP suspension front and rear
  • Rallye engine guard with storage, increased ground clearance and relocated side stand
  • Rallye fairing for improved cockpit layout and more wind protection, among others
  • DE projector headlights
  • Oil cooler
  • new front fender
So here is a sequence taken over a few afternoon work sessions when I got the thing mostly together. There were some inital comparison photos, then the actual build.

Photo 001 shows the original SHOWA Dakar front end at left and the new WP front end at right


Photo 002 is the same from the back corner


Photo 003 depicts the Magura X-Line 28mm handlebars mounted on Emig Racing clamps sitting on top of some home-made risers (the risers have been ditched for now)



Photo 007 - The main bits on the floor


Photo 008 - getting feet under the frame


Photo 009 - finally standing up-right on inflated tires


Photo 009 - starting to look like a motorbike


Photo 010 - the front, minus the fairing


Photo 011 - quarter profile, still missing a fairing


Summary for this entry:
  • Magura X-Line 28mm handlebars courtesy of Touratech, p/n 041-0907, featuring the heated grip provision used by BMW. These bars are way too expensive for what they are and they are a total PITA. I would hesitate to recommend these to anyone. More reviews to follow.
  • WP 48mm USD forks on KTM 950 ADV clamps, KTM 450SX stem turned down to accept BMW-spec steering head bearings from All Balls
  • The fork guards are from a KTM 85SX
  • The front wheel is a KTM 640 ADV hub laced to an Excel 21" rim with large gauge stainless steel spokes
  • Brake caliper is OE Brembo from the KTM 950 ADV and uses a 300mm rotor like the original Dakar; master cylinder is the OE Brembo on the Dakar (interestingly enough, the KTM caliper is identical to the BMW, but silver, different mount though)
  • Tires are Pirelli MT-21s
I would like to thank Komatias for his help on this project; he started his build well before me and had most of the details sorted before I even started. With his insight I was able to simplify the purchasing process and I ended up with most of what I needed in first round of purchasing.

-so that is about it for now. More to follow!

sellmeyer screwed with this post 03-19-2010 at 11:33 PM
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Old 02-16-2010, 01:35 PM   #2
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looks class,pitty mine doesnt look that good.

thoes forks look same lenght as standard.

also what shock you fitting? one for the bmw or a shock of a different bike
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Old 02-16-2010, 03:51 PM   #3
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I really like the idea of KTM forks with dual discs on a Dakar, just have to figure a way to fit the ABS ring. Looks like you've done a great job so far. I know how everything takes so much time when your building a custom one-off piece

I look forward to watching this all come together.
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Old 02-16-2010, 03:57 PM   #4
herrhelmet
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Nice. Can't wait to see more pics.
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Old 02-16-2010, 06:35 PM   #5
sellmeyer OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Throttlemeister
I really like the idea of KTM forks with dual discs on a Dakar, just have to figure a way to fit the ABS ring.

It was my original plan to go the twin disc route on this because, initially, I had both brake calipers and a line on a master cylinder to drive them both. Two things turned me away from this plan:

a) the brembo master cylinder from the KTM wouldn't integrate nicely with the RHS switch housing for the BMW...at least not that I could easily enough for my taste.

b) the most significant reason for dumping the twin brakes was that they benefit folks who ride street tires on the tarmac...not off-road riders. Generally I ride knobbies because I like the dirt and rocks...with a single rotor I can lock up a front wheel on my Dakar; I don't need a 2nd brake on the front!

-that being said...the KTM 950 front end is a simple way to put a 2nd brake on the front of your Dakar. If this is something you want to do I would dump the RHS switch gear and throttle and go with a full KTM solution on the RHS of the handlebar. Its almost plug and play!


-regarding the front ABS rotor, I'd encourage you to dump the ABS to lighten the bike and simplify things with the brake system...but if you want to keep the ABS I can't imagine the ABS ring and sensor mount would be that difficult to sort. I have an ABS ring lying around my somewhere...I'll get a photo of it on the KTM hub for you.
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Old 02-16-2010, 06:51 PM   #6
sellmeyer OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john_aero
looks class,pitty mine doesnt look that good.

thoes forks look same lenght as standard.

also what shock you fitting? one for the bmw or a shock of a different bike
Right now the front WP forks are set up for the same length as the original SHOWA forks with 210mm of travel; I can change out some of the internals to make it maybe 265mm of travel and taller...but for now I'm sticking with stock metrics.

The rear stock is a 4014 Fusion with adjustable length, rebound dampening, high speed compression and low speed compression, and remote preload. I was considering the one that touratech sells, but I wanted more adjustability because I knew the bike was undergoing many changes. The touratech model has more travel than mine but the only adjustments it offers are the rebound and single compression dampening-length is fixed and the preload can't be adjusted without the subframe jacked up and requires a wrench.

Photo 013 shows the reservoir and preload adjuster mounted on the frame


-hope this helps.

sellmeyer screwed with this post 02-16-2010 at 07:48 PM
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Old 02-16-2010, 08:33 PM   #7
sellmeyer OP
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a few sketches of the concept exterior

This is a rough idea of what I have in mind for this project

Up front I'd like a taller windscreen; the single spark dakar screen puts air flow at my eyebrow and I'd like it to go just over my helmet, if possible
I'd like the fairing to go on and come off with fewer fasteners and hassle that the stock crap that BMW put on the bike
I want better lights
I'd like an oil cooler
I run too many instruments to fit around the instrument cluster on the stock setup, the new instrument panel needs more room and mounting options for indicators, switches, and instruments
And overall, the front end needs to be rock solid; the stock junk shakes too much!

Down on the bottom I'd like a bit more ground clearance and coverage for the engine and little bits
I value tool storage that a rallye-style engine guard can offer because it is easier to get at stuff down there than taking off the seat to pick out an over-stuffed tool roll crammed too tightly into the small space above the fuel tank
Lighter weight than the OE bash plate and engine bars is a plus and certainly possible with composites
A relocated side stand is important to me after scraping off one of my side stand springs in Guatemala...I don't want to lose the ability to park my bike in an upright orientation
Plus I'd like a truly flat and smooth surface on which I can jack up the bike or put it on a box-this is pretty much impossible with the stock kit



Here is a sketch of the front that I did about a year ago


One more from the side with the stock fender


A side by side comparison against the single spark Dakar windscreen


An overlay showing the rough difference

please note that I am not a great artist with a pencil...the overlays don't align left to right...the fairing won't be off center

The engine guard is pretty well set to the picture; the plug is almost done and I'll be molding it soon.

I've started the front fairing mock up and I'm sorting out a few things in terms of squeezing in all of the necessary bits. I'm feeling pretty good about being able to closely match the sketches. Right now it looks like the fairing won't neck down as tightly in the very front at bottom; the most narrow part of the sketch is actually going to be wider to accommodate integration with the stock side panels-still it will be more narrow in front than the widest part of the side panels. I might extend out in front a bit more than in the sketch in order to make enough room for the oil cooler, both lights, and still have room for the stock instrument cluster.

All in all, things are actually taking shape. Hopefully I'll have some pics of the fairing to post soon.

sellmeyer screwed with this post 02-16-2010 at 08:43 PM
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Old 02-16-2010, 08:41 PM   #8
herrhelmet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sellmeyer
Right now the front WP forks are set up for the same length as the original SHOWA forks with 210mm of travel; I can change out some of the internals to make it maybe 265mm of travel and taller...but for now I'm sticking with stock metrics.

The rear stock is a 4014 Fusion with adjustable length, rebound dampening, high speed compression and low speed compression, and remote preload. I was considering the one that touratech sells, but I wanted more adjustability because I knew the bike was undergoing many changes. The touratech model has more travel than mine but the only adjustments it offers are the rebound and single compression dampening-length is fixed and the preload can't be adjusted without the subframe jacked up and requires a wrench.

Photo 013 shows the reservoir and preload adjuster mounted on the frame


-hope this helps.
How do you like your TT footpeg/pedal relocator with the Fastways.. Is the bracket aluminum or Steel?
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Old 02-16-2010, 08:48 PM   #9
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Love watching people "develop" these bikes.
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Old 02-16-2010, 11:56 PM   #10
komatias
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you wanna hear a secret?


was looking through photos of the G650X engines and saw that the clutch side case cover allows you to inspect and repair the clutch without removing the whole cover...all you need is an adapter for the starter motor. A mate in SA has done the swap and it works.
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Old 02-17-2010, 12:09 AM   #11
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Nice.

I don't recall who it was but I hosted photos of this a few years back when they were selling it in flea market.

There are quite a few detail photos in my gallery here. Feel free to use them as you need if they can be of any assistance.
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Old 02-17-2010, 06:43 AM   #12
john_aero
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sellmeyer
Right now the front WP forks are set up for the same length as the original SHOWA forks with 210mm of travel; I can change out some of the internals to make it maybe 265mm of travel and taller...but for now I'm sticking with stock metrics.

The rear stock is a 4014 Fusion with adjustable length, rebound dampening, high speed compression and low speed compression, and remote preload. I was considering the one that touratech sells, but I wanted more adjustability because I knew the bike was undergoing many changes. The touratech model has more travel than mine but the only adjustments it offers are the rebound and single compression dampening-length is fixed and the preload can't be adjusted without the subframe jacked up and requires a wrench.

Photo 013 shows the reservoir and preload adjuster mounted on the frame


-hope this helps.
i take it thats a brank new shock for the dakar and not just a wp taken froma different bike?
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Old 02-17-2010, 11:35 AM   #13
sellmeyer OP
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some quick answers to ?s

A few answers to the questions above:

HerrHelmet:

I really like the Fastway pegs because I am a big fan of the set screws for traction. I find that the 'teeth' cut into most pedals don't afford as much traction as the screws.

That being said the Fastways do suck for one simple reason...the don't fit the BMW footpeg mounts or the TT mounts without modification to the mount. They don't fit in that once they are on, they don't fold up when your bike drops. Consequently you end up bending your footpeg bracket in the process.

The fastway folks could do a bit better at giving more relief at the footpeg mount. Alternatively, owners can grind down their mounts to give relief to the fastways.

*oh and the TT bracket is steel, not aluminum. Steel is very necessary since that part is likely to bend (see above)

For John Aero:

The WP rear shock is adapted for use on the Dakar; I ordered it that way from across the pond so it just dropped in. All except the mounting of the reservoir, which I had to do myself because my original shock reservoir was in front of the fuel tank, not on the frame.

I ordered the lines a bit longer to give me some extra mounting options. My hope is to do some external fuel tanks at some point, so I got the preload adjuster with a long enough line so that it could be mounted on the LHS of the frame. This was because the standard preload adjuster location gets crowded by fuel tanks...


Komatias, where did the clutch reference come from? I don't really understand the context...


Doyle,

thanks for the link to the photos. I've got some of that bike in my collection, but none as clear as the ones you have. Most of mine are out of focus. I think that bike has been flipped 3 or more times as I've seen it around the forums more than any other.

I've collected more F650RR photos of other bikes and used them as references for my own ideas. I have not been impressed with the fit and finish or build quality of most of the RR parts by TT. I know that I can do better and expect to end up with better results.

My goal is to end up with a product similar to the TT39 that touratech offers; that is essentially my dream bike. Imagine the RR that you showed above, except that on the back there would be pannier racks instead of more fuel.

The GSR is going to be a bike with more off-road capacity than a standard GS Dakar, something that can be raced if that is a desire, but also something that is more practical than a straight up race bike. I'd like to be able to ride the GSR to Nevada or Baja with camping gear and extra race tires, setup camp, and race it in a solo or minimally supported capacity.

The thing I've heard from at least 1 RR owner is that he wished he could use his bike for something other than strict racing. He had a rediculous amount of range on the bike, but he couldn't bring anything with him. I think this guy was going to put the original rear subframe on the bike so that he could add panniers and go off on his own.

sellmeyer screwed with this post 02-17-2010 at 11:46 AM
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Old 02-18-2010, 05:06 AM   #14
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Sorry to confuse. When doing long distances on sand and generally loose stuff you can burn out your clutch. The f650RR guys like Simon Pavey and Nick Plumb had left hand covers specifically machined to allow them to inspect and replace the clutch plates without having to change oil or remove the whole of the left cover.

Since you are messing around with the bike you might be able to make use of the g650X left hand cover. The idea came to me when I came across a post of yours saying something about an oil cooler and a flexible oil hose.
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Old 02-18-2010, 07:42 AM   #15
sellmeyer OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by komatias
Sorry to confuse. When doing long distances on sand and generally loose stuff you can burn out your clutch. The f650RR guys like Simon Pavey and Nick Plumb had left hand covers specifically machined to allow them to inspect and replace the clutch plates without having to change oil or remove the whole of the left cover.

Since you are messing around with the bike you might be able to make use of the g650X left hand cover. The idea came to me when I came across a post of yours saying something about an oil cooler and a flexible oil hose.
Got the context now; and I believe you are right. I saw a custom cover plate on plumby's bike that raised my eyebrow but I never knew why. The RACE TO DAKAR team had these too, I think. I wondered why they would bother with a custom plate; now it all makes sense.

You mention the G650X engine; as in the one that was out in 2007 and 2008 when BMW was moving the F-series out and the G-series into show rooms. Any word on whether or not the G650GS power plant has the same cover plate?

I certainly won't have the $$$ to replace the lhs engine case this year; used G650X engines don't come up for sale over here, nor do their individual bits. But with the G650GS back on the market, their might be more pickins in the future...?

This is something I'll have to look into with more effort at some point, especially if I spend more time in the desert-which happens to be only 2 hours away!


Hey George, how has your 'racing' gone with the new forks? I've seen some photos of you out with other blokes in the mud but I've not read any comments or heard about any race results.
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