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Old 01-31-2011, 11:54 AM   #1
Husky Varmit OP
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Location: Llano Estacado - Cottle County
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Take a Backup Camera!!!

So, what to do with a R1100RT after you replace the fourth clutch in 17,000 miles? What else, fire it up and take a 'shake down' cruise.

The plan, if what I do can be called planning, was to get out of the flat lands as quick as possible, visit friends that I have been ignoring in the Metromess, Lake Fork, Nassau Bay and Corpus Christi. Shouldn't take more than a week or so and will put about 1,500 miles on the bike.

Llano Estacado to Dallas is one boring ride. If it wasn't for the idiots around the Metromess trying to kill each other with their vehicles, you could almost sleep for the whole trip. So the camera stayed safe and snug in the tank bag. Same thing from Carrollton to Beautiful Downtown Yantis. Never heard of it? Neither had I until I decided to stop for the night with an old friend I have known since '63. Even Google maps and Garmin can't agree on how to get there. I went with Garmin since it gets kinda sketchy balancing the laptop on the tank bag on back roads. Thankfully the obnoxious lady (?) that lives in the GPS was able to find the house, but not until after marking a waypoint at a fishing dock about a hundred yards away. Neither Google nor Garmin could locate the address!!

Now, headed out of Yantis going to Nassau Bay takes you through an area that ain't quite Piney Woods, ain't quite black clay, ain't quite nothing describable - it is just simply The Big Thicket. But it is kinda purty, so the camera finally is coaxed out of its' comfortable bed and shoved out above the windscreen to capture the beauty of a perfect January, Texas day.





Now, this is more like it! Temps in the 60's, green stuff growing on the side of the road, traffic density about right, Current Wife (the Beemer - it's a long story) clicking along at about 80, Gulf of Mexico in the sights - life is good!

WHAT THE............. the speedo shows us doing 40 mph and the GPS says 78. Think I'll believe the GPS. Still, I like to have that big round guage down there to glance at instead of having to bend over and look at those little red numbers on the GPS. Uh oh, now the needle is bouncing and getting even slower. Better stop and take a look at this. Don't want to have extraneous effluvia floating around in front axle and getting into the wheel bearings. Have had that happen and it can cause excitement at inopportune times.

Ahhhhh. Little blue sign. Picnic area one mile. Gotta love Texas.

Pull the front axle and pick up speedo gear housing off of the ground. Nylon gear doesn't have any teeth left. No problem. Throw away what used to be a gear, clean out trash and shove housing back in place as a spacer. Better get a few pics for the archive and to show buddy back in Carrollton.

WHAT THE..........(expletive deleted), (expletive deleted) , CAMERA!!!!

Awwww, screw it!!! Slap the axle back together. Total downtime approx. 20 minutes. Look out Beaumont - here I come.

(the only other interesting part of this trip in the next post)
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Old 01-31-2011, 01:56 PM   #2
Husky Varmit OP
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Location: Llano Estacado - Cottle County
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Backup Camera Pt 2

Blankety, blank, blank on-line editor!!!! Get part 2 all typed out and it loses the whole thing!!!!!!


Anyway, the Lumix has decided to work part-time with no logical pattern to when it will store images and when it will go on strike. So all of you will have to use your imagination as to what the rarely flat Gulf looks like at High Island, the Flounder Piccata w/ crumbled crab at Frenchies on NASA 1, the pecan pie at Inman's in Llano, etc. etc. etc.

The swing through Corpus was cancelled on Saturday when the Garmin started popping up warnings of thunderstorms along the Gulf Coast. So, at Freeport the 1100 and I headed northwest. We gobbled asphalt until Llano. Llano is one of those towns I like to stop in. Super people, little crime, good food and generally just a good feel. Now, most riders will automatically back their bike in next to the pits at Coopers, but you are short changing yourself if you do. Not that Coopers isn't good - it is, but a couple of blocks further is Inman's. If you haven't been in there yet, do it - and be sure to have the pecan pie!

One of the side benefits of heading through the hill country is that I get to use the tread on the side of my tires. Darn it, I pay for the whole tire, I want to use the whole tire. I had managed to scrub off a little of the side rubber through careful selection of some back roads to get to Llano but there is still a flat spot in the middle of the back tire. There just isn't any way to use the sides when all of the roads around here are so straight that you can look down them for 50 miles and they don't deviate more than a couple of feet.

Coming out of Llano towards the Llano Estacado most of the twisties start dying off. There are a few nice long sweepers on 71 but that is about it. Still, it helps to round out the tires a little bit if you carry enough speed. About 10 - 12 miles out of town I was closing on a truck in a lonnnnnggggggg left hand sweeper when a carcass appeared from under his trailer. Yes, I admit I was having an attack of cranio-rectitis for getting so close behind him and I have already properly chastized myself so keep it to yourself.

Apparently someone had lent a helping hand to a suicidal deer earlier in the day. The remains were smeared over most of my lane. Hey, no problem. The carcass was almost flat so just straighten up, hit it flat and go back to enjoying the sweeper. Yeah, right! Does anybody here know what the coefficient of friction for deer guts is? I don't see it listed in any of my handy references, but I estimate it to be somewhere in the range of greased owl feces on melting ice.

NOTE: In the interest of my sisters and brethren here let me take this opportunity to pass along this suggestion. DO NOT TRY TO TURN WHEN YOU HAVE DEER GUTS ON AND/OR UNDER YOUR TIRES!!

Let me try to give a visual image. Picture in your mind an amateur flat tracker on an old Bultaco Astro going into the first corner way too hot. Now, substitute a fully loaded BMW R1100RT for the Astro. NOT what old white haired geezeers are supposed to be doing!! Somehow I managed to scrub the slime off of the tires with at least .5 nanometers of asphalt left to work with. I do not recommend this manuever for any riders with heart conditions.

Boring trip the rest of the way home and beat the worst part of the cold front. Now just wait for the new speedo gear, change the oil, check the valves and look for a good weather window to head on over to Florida. Probably won't be for the nexr few days though, the forecast is for a high of 17F tomorrow with snow and ice, Hmmmmmm, maybe I should crank up the Husky instead................

Varmit out.
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:15 AM   #3
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4th clutch in 17k miles? Whatever you are doing, do something different...
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:55 PM   #4
Husky Varmit OP
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Location: Llano Estacado - Cottle County
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Clutches

Readers Digest version:

1997 R1100RT

#1 - original owner had 1st done under warranty at 4K - trans oil on clutch plate

I bought it last year w/12K on the clock

#2 clutch slipping at 15K - dealer repaired - trans oil on clutch plate

400 miles later - clutch slipping - trans oil on clutch plate

#3 - dealer replaced along with warped trans input shaft (real problem) - bent shaft causing leak around seal which was being blamed for all problems - about 11 thou off

#4 - slipping again at 17K - did the repair myself this time - found that dealer had seriously overgreased trans splines and grease had slung out onto clutch plate - known problem w/BMW - stupid dealer

of course, no help from BMW although input shaft was bad from factory - another known problem - but since none of the certified mechanics (?) diagnosed real problem it went 12 years with a factory defect causing problems that were just patched by the dealers
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Old 02-03-2011, 02:06 AM   #5
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You don't need no stinkin camera Your words painted a better picture, at least in my demented mind. Thanks for the tip, new visit to Llano is now in order to compare the BBQ.

Safe travels

Cheers
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Old 02-03-2011, 09:18 PM   #6
Husky Varmit OP
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Feedback

Thanks. Always appreciate kind words.

That might turn into a little more than a day trip if you are coming from way the heck over in the Carolinas. Still, it might be worth it if you plan a stop at the Fredericksburg Pie Company. They make something that I think is called Bourbon Pecan Pie (ain't senility wonderful) that is absolutely fantastic.

Just watch out for the ditch rats.
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Old 02-04-2011, 12:56 PM   #7
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My folks lived in Fredericksburg for years and Coopers was always a treat, so I am very happy to make a run for BBQ that's even better On my X country trip last year the heat chased me North, but this year it will be in the Fall and a run to Llano is sounding real tasty.

Cheers
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Old 02-04-2011, 03:23 PM   #8
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if the real problem was a bent shaft that caused seal leaking and a soiled plate then why did it crap again @17K?

if that was my bike i would have sold it right after #3 repair and said fu to owning another bmw & bought a fjr. you are a patient & forgiving man.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Husky Varmit View Post
Readers Digest version:

1997 R1100RT

#1 - original owner had 1st done under warranty at 4K - trans oil on clutch plate

I bought it last year w/12K on the clock

#2 clutch slipping at 15K - dealer repaired - trans oil on clutch plate

400 miles later - clutch slipping - trans oil on clutch plate

#3 - dealer replaced along with warped trans input shaft (real problem) - bent shaft causing leak around seal which was being blamed for all problems - about 11 thou off

#4 - slipping again at 17K - did the repair myself this time - found that dealer had seriously overgreased trans splines and grease had slung out onto clutch plate - known problem w/BMW - stupid dealer

of course, no help from BMW although input shaft was bad from factory - another known problem - but since none of the certified mechanics (?) diagnosed real problem it went 12 years with a factory defect causing problems that were just patched by the dealers
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Old 02-04-2011, 05:48 PM   #9
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He said in the same explanation that they had used excessive grease in the assembly that contaminated the surfaces.

I agree, he is a patient man that must enjoy a challenge, but the r's are a treat (as are the FJR's).

Cheers
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Old 02-04-2011, 08:25 PM   #10
Husky Varmit OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eakins View Post
if the real problem was a bent shaft that caused seal leaking and a soiled plate then why did it crap again @17K?

if that was my bike i would have sold it right after #3 repair and said fu to owning another bmw & bought a fjr. you are a patient & forgiving man.
One truth I have learned in the 5 plus decades that I have messed with these 2 wheel things is that EVERY bike has some basic design and/or build flaws. That includes the cheap Chinese and Russian bikes that I rode in Russia right up through some of the best, factory set up machines from the best European manufacturers. Some are just easier to rectify than others. The RT is rock solid after some simple problems with the driveline are sorted out. Well, that and the hall sensors, but they are easy to replace.

By the time that the 3rd clutch starting slipping I had literally been through everything inside the bell housing with dial indicators, micrometers, calipers and anything else I could get my hands on to find what was the root cause of the previous failures. It was pretty easy to pull the starter (if you aren't familiar with the design, it is basically the same as an old car) and stick a boresight up into the clutch. As soon as I spotted grease slung all over the pressure plate, it was VERY obvious that Bubba had screwed it up during assembly instead of another component failure. At that point there was no way that I was going to let a Certified Mechanic (?) get their paws on it again. Particularly since they had caused the problem and are 200+ miles away. We agreed that if they would supply any and all parts required to make it right, I would supply the labor to fix it right. (Note: I did find a few other things wrong while replacing the clutch plate, so it was a better idea that originally thought.)

Still, I did consider sending it to a remote burial site and replacing it with some other cruiser. Truthfully, if I had ridden anything in the last few years that fit my riding style as well, fit my 6'4"body as well, hauled around my 100 lbs of crap and was as much fun when the road starts getting curvy, I probably would have retired it.

BOBW:

Careful - you are reading between the lines a little. I didn't say that Inman's was better - just that you owe it to yourself to check it out. There are days when they are much better, then I have been in there when they aren't as good. Only the pecan pie is consistant. Particularly the turkey sausage swings from edible to scrumptious.

Oh, and I looked at the menu from the Fredericksburg Pie Company while I was in the Yukon today. It is Bourbon Orange Pecan pie. I HIGHLY endorse this product to anybody who likes pecan pie. So much so that anytime I am going to be in the area, I call ahead and make sure they have one ready for me to take with me.

Varmit Out.
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