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Old 04-28-2011, 09:43 AM   #181
Flashback
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Location: Mariana Islands via Raleigh, NC
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As far as a good WNC tire, depends on where you are riding most. If you are sticking to the Charlotte - Blue ridge and Tail of the Dragon super slab routes, go with something like the K60.

But WNC has a very active dual sport community and Charlotte is centrally located to most of it. To the east you've got the Uwharries, to the South the sandy forestland of SC, to the west and north all the mountains of the Applachians. All the mountain ranges along the WV/NC/TN/SC/GA borders can be traversed via almost all dirt alone if you know where to find the connections. And if you are really up for a good ride go out to Tellico Plains.

Where I ride the ridges on the edge of Pisgah, when I get lucky enough to have a couple days to make it out there, is not K60 country (the K60s are no better than 100% street tires in that mud). It's knob country -> Karoo T, TKC, E09 Dakar etc.

The F8 is a great machine for riding in all of the above places (and getting to those places). It's heavy though and if you don't like muscling a heavy bike in the dirt, it might not be your best choice. I believe someone out of Asheville is selling a 2006 KTM 640A which would be my idea of the ideal Appalachian traveler if I didn't already have an F8.

If you are around next weekend come join other inmates at the NC ADV Spring Fling in Bryson City NC. There are a couple good rides planned in areas that you will have fun riding on the XRL.

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=676368

I'm going to try to be there but can't commit yet due to scheduling conflicts. If I do get to ride, I'll let you feel out my F8 and decide for yourself whether it's the right bike for you.
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Old 04-28-2011, 12:05 PM   #182
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I think you'd love it, Tacoma. I swapped from a KLR, for this duty. The F800 is fantastic on the slab rides...great wind protection with a good aftermarket fairing. The stock shield wasn't too bad, except for the air hitting me square in the face. In the dirt, it surprisingly performs better than my KLR....all things considered.

I do think you would most likely need to modify the seat (raise & level to get rid of the torturous slant/dip) and/or sit on an Airhawk like I currently do.

Also, you will need to modify the suspension, especially for two-up. The front end more than the rear...necessarily. Stock form is too soft with too much brake dive.

Those are things you'll probably WANT to do, not necessarily HAVE to do. At least not immediately. I always say ride it a while until you figure out exactly what you need based on where & how you ride.

Other than a lousy set of rear wheel bearings, which I promptly replaced with a good pair of SKF's, my 2010 model has performed flawlessly so far. But, I've only had it 6 months and 7,000 miles so far.

HF

p.s. My seat and suspension are being overhauled as I type....
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Old 04-29-2011, 09:12 AM   #183
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Steering Head Stupid

Here's an important Stupid Question....I think:

How does the steering head get adjusted in the triple clamp? Mine has a little play (slop) in it, and I need to tighten it up a bit. Just looking at it, I don't see the customary "adjuster nut" underneath the top triple clamp. Also, don't see the top anchor nut, but am assuming that's beneath the glowing BMW cover on top of the stem.

Haven't reviewed a manual and not found a Thread for this item. So, I thought I'd ask for guidance from the wise sages.

Mucho Gracias!

HF

p.s. I get some lateral movement when I wiggle the forks back and forth. So, its adjustment time. I'll also be removing the steering bearings for careful inspection. Figure there is no grease in them anyway....since my wheel bearings were basically dry too. Maybe I'll replace these with SKF brand, as well. We'll see.
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Old 04-29-2011, 09:32 AM   #184
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The adjuster nut is under the emblem.
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Old 04-29-2011, 10:05 AM   #185
rediRrakaD
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HighFive,
PLEASE let us in on your suspension improvements!!!
Look forward to a summary of your changes.
The front end is warm butter, out of the box.
I kept bottoming out on mild compressions the first time in dirt.
My fender stayed on though. (Rode the same road as Chi one week earlier.)

Cheers,
S.
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Old 04-29-2011, 04:21 PM   #186
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Cushman:

My F800S used to do the same thing, and I also do a lot of engine braking. I have learned to avoid the problem by shifting from 2 to 1 while the engine is still spinning above 2.5 K rpm. If you let it get below that, it can be harder to shift into first or neutral.

I really don't recommend you stomp on the shifter. If rolling back and forth or feathering the clutch doesn't help, just turn off the engine. The clutch is probably dragging a bit, and if the engine is not spinning, you can probably shift into whatever gear you want with light pressure and some rolling around.

I also found it helped to put extra slack in the clutch cable. You would think you would want less slack in order to be able to disengage the clutch more. But I think less slack tends to heat the clutch more, causing it to be sticky.
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Old 04-29-2011, 04:56 PM   #187
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmithSwede View Post
Cushman:

My F800S used to do the same thing, and I also do a lot of engine braking. I have learned to avoid the problem by shifting from 2 to 1 while the engine is still spinning above 2.5 K rpm. If you let it get below that, it can be harder to shift into first or neutral.

I really don't recommend you stomp on the shifter. If rolling back and forth or feathering the clutch doesn't help, just turn off the engine. The clutch is probably dragging a bit, and if the engine is not spinning, you can probably shift into whatever gear you want with light pressure and some rolling around.

I also found it helped to put extra slack in the clutch cable. You would think you would want less slack in order to be able to disengage the clutch more. But I think less slack tends to heat the clutch more, causing it to be sticky.
That's what I was thinking...thanks for the advice!
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Old 05-04-2011, 05:13 AM   #188
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Anybody use a Rotapax setup for extra fuel on their F8? Thinking a right side mount could be good.....for times when a couple extra gallons are needed.

HF

**Edit**Nevermind....answered my own stupid question with Google. That was easy!

But, you can still chime in if you've had any experience....good or bad. Advice is always appreciated.
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HighFive screwed with this post 05-04-2011 at 05:25 AM
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Old 05-04-2011, 09:13 AM   #189
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Yup,
I use a Rotopax on the back...


Next trip, I'm mounting it to the rack directly and then a soft small bag on top. The sealed box is great for work (laptop), but not needed for adventures!.
S.
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Old 05-04-2011, 11:06 AM   #190
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Eek

Quote:
Originally Posted by kinglurker View Post
New owner: check
Stupid question: check

My rear brake fluid looks kinda black.
Should I replace, or is this somehow supposed to be like that on the 800?
Mine is the same and has looked like that since new! I was going to give my dealer a hard time for using DOT 5.1 for some strange reason untill I took the lid off the reservoir and looked inside. When you take the cap off it looks like perfectly normal DOT 4.1 fluid. It seems that the plastic, although translucent land white in colour, changes the colour of the fluid when viewed outside to look dirty/purple.
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Old 05-04-2011, 12:20 PM   #191
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This one is dumb, really dumb, especially since it's been going on a while.

Does the filler neck on the GS800 trip the automatic shut-off on a fuel nozzle when the tank is nearly full?

I have been filling like a sissy since I got this bike. I fill, check, fill, check. Then, when it's getting close to the bottom of the filler neck, I turn the fuel nozzle sideways to see better and squeeze one little drippy-drop of fuel after another until it's full. I have been doing this to avoid a feared, potential spill over onto the paint and seat. Crazy right. I can't believe I am doing this. (My DR didn't always trip the nozzle and I would end up with gas all over the place.)

Can I just fill away, full tilt, without fear of spilling?


(This felt oddly like sharing in a group therapy session.)
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Old 05-04-2011, 12:25 PM   #192
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fronnzy View Post
This one is dumb, really dumb, especially since it's been going on a while.

Does the filler neck on the GS800 trip the automatic shut-off on a fuel nozzle when the tank is nearly full?

I have been filling like a sissy since I got this bike. I fill, check, fill, check. Then, when it's getting close to the bottom of the filler neck, I turn the fuel nozzle sideways to see better and squeeze one little drippy-drop of fuel after another until it's full. I have been doing this to avoid a feared, potential spill over onto the paint and seat. Crazy right. I can't believe I am doing this. (My DR didn't always trip the nozzle and I would end up with gas all over the place.)

Can I just fill away, full tilt, without fear of spilling?


(This felt oddly like sharing in a group therapy session.)

You pretty much described how I do it. Mine does shut off the pump, but it seems to launch a few ounces of fuel out all over the place just before it kills it. I know of some people that have removed that red plastic thing on the inside, i haven't bothered with it yet, hasn't been that big of an inconvenience for me to worry about.

Ryan
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Old 05-04-2011, 04:03 PM   #193
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Holy Smokes....Chi. Outstanding answer to the steering stem adjustment. Super Thanks!!

I've had mine all apart since asking the question. What a simple design, I must say.



The single, combo, internal-threaded bolt at the top of the stem is an interesting way to anchor it. I've always worked with external threads with separate adjuster and lock nuts.



My "clunk" was definitely in the stem due to loose bearing pressure. With wheel removed, I could wiggle the forks laterally (forward to aft). When I inspected the adjustment bolt up top, it was actually loose....about two threads from snug. After relieving the stem pinch bolt tension, I could easily turn the top bolt with zero effort. There was no torque value in it. So, its was definitely time to make an adjustment.

Fortunately, my steering bearings looked great! Plenty of grease and in very sound shape. Guess I caught it very early. Here it is all cleaned up:



I am very pleased to announce that THESE bearings are indeed much better quality than what I found in my wheels. Mine were a nice pair of NTN tapered bearings: NTN 4T 320 - 28x



THIS is what should have been in my wheels from the beginning (from the factory). Not those cheesy cheapo LFO bearings....what were falling apart. I'd still prefer SKF's, but have no reason to swap out these NTN bearings. They were in excellent condition. I regreased them, and reassembled my steering stem.

Honestly, this is the easiest steering stem to work with, that I've ever put my hands on. So easy, anybody can do it. Ok....how about "most anybody". I realize nothing is foolproof, because fools are so ingenius.

HF

p.s. Fronzy....I've had no problem with filler neck auto-shutoff at the fuel pumps in Oklahoma....or elsewhere for that matter. Works great. Don't think I've ever spilled a drop. But it wouldn't bother me a bit, if I did. I'd just grab a rag and use the "opportunity" to spiff up my bike a bit.
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Old 05-04-2011, 08:44 PM   #194
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Another dumb one

I've only had my GS for a few months, but I'm managing to do the stupid things that I avoided before. A ninja pulled up next to me at a light, feeling froggy I gave in and sped off out of the light racing him, I failed to shift from 2 to 3 and red lined, the bike shifted to N and I felt dumb and am lucky that that's all I've got.
Is that normal though for the bike to shift to Neutral?
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Old 05-05-2011, 07:22 PM   #195
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Thanks for the fuel responses fella's.

Quote:
Originally Posted by exotesthrasouden View Post
I've only had my GS for a few months, but I'm managing to do the stupid things that I avoided before. A ninja pulled up next to me at a light, feeling froggy I gave in and sped off out of the light racing him, I failed to shift from 2 to 3 and red lined, the bike shifted to N and I felt dumb and am lucky that that's all I've got.
Is that normal though for the bike to shift to Neutral?
Did you attempt to make the shift but instead found a false neutral between 2 and 3, or did the bike actually kick itself down to neutral i.e. between 1 and 2?

I know there is a warning lamp that kicks on at redline, but I can't find anything in the manual about kicking you back down to neutral. Doesn't sound right, probably just a missed shift. But there are some much more experienced people on this board that are sure to chime in...
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