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Old 09-22-2011, 10:02 PM   #1
Dadayama OP
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Raising a lowered F650GS to standard hieght, my final thoughts

Ok... After spending many hours dealing with BMW parts departments, studying the parts break downs and talking with Ohlins shock experts I have arrived at the truth concerning some things i have read on-line in regards to raising a lowered F650GS. There are two main myths that i will address and i have searched for their source and believe i have found them.

1. Myth one: You have to change the front suspension as well as the back suspension to raise the bike to standard size.

This is incorrect. The only difference on the BMW F650GS (Twin) between the standard suspension and the lowered suspension is the rear shock. There is no adjustment to the front suspension.

The source of this myth is the F650GS (single cylinder) made prior to 2008. On those bikes (now named G650GS, there is a spacer on the front suspension, which needs to be changed out, but not on the modern F650GS-twin.

2. Myth two: There is only one shock used for both the F650GS and the F800GS.

This is incorrect. There are two different shocks with two different part numbers. They have two different lengths and two different strokes.

In regards to Ohlin shocks... There is not one single shock for both the F650GS and F800GS. There is two totally different shocks for each. The F650GS will take a BM801 and the F800GS will take a BM802. There is a total of 15 mm difference in the length between the two shocks.

I believe the source of the myth is that they are both listed as the same type... S46DR1B

Hopefully this will be helpful to others who are looking to raise their factory lowered bikes to standard heights in the future or those looking to replace or sell Ohlin shocks for a F650GS.

Don't shoot the messenger

Take care
Peter
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Old 09-23-2011, 10:38 AM   #2
Hikertrash
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Good to know. My F650 was sold to me as a lowered, but the previous owner had replaced the factory rear shock for an Ohlins. The mechanic at the dealer told me it was a "lowered" Ohlins shock. After my "lowered" side stand extender didn't fit, I started to question the mechanic's knowledge. Only after talking with Ohlins did i find out my bike was returned to standard height and Ohlins does not make "lowered" shocks for the 2008+ F650GS.
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:55 PM   #3
FT-WA-MD-GS
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I/we will let you know what parts are needed to lift a lowered 2009 F650GS. The Mrs has put 42K on her OEM shock and we're thinking that replacing the shock with a new Ohlins will give it more carrying capacity and certainly more ground clearance. Want to use the coupons provided at the BMW Off-road Training School in Greer, SC. Although she's still not fond of dirt, we are getting a few more opportunities here & there [just enjoyed a ride down old Rt 66 in Oklahoma]. We had a fantastic 6,000 mile trip from MD to the RA Rally in CO along a southern route while returning along a northern route. It's certainly a big, beautiful country if you get out on some backroads to see it for yourself.



If you're inclined, more at: http://s1213.photobucket.com/albums/...to%20Colorado/

Will let you know if we get the Lifting mission accomplished according to my plans (service appt on 1Aug12).
Ciao!
Phil

2010 F800GS,
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Old 07-05-2012, 06:48 PM   #4
markymcd
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Don't forget folks that if you raise your lowered 650 twin to a non-lowered one you will also have to replace your side stand.

cheers,
Mark
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Old 07-06-2012, 12:36 PM   #5
Mollygrubber
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My wife has a factory lowered F698, and it is still a little too tall for her. Her forks are all the way up in the triple tree. I assume lowering her forks will (if the OP's "Myth # 1 is correct) actually balance the suspension geometry front-to-back, as well as give her less reach to the ground?
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Old 07-06-2012, 01:07 PM   #6
itsatdm
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I would. If BMW just lowers the rear, that surprises me. It does change the geomatry of the bike. I assume a dealer fix, so maybe that explains.
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Old 07-06-2012, 02:10 PM   #7
LukasM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mollygrubber View Post
My wife has a factory lowered F698, and it is still a little too tall for her. Her forks are all the way up in the triple tree. I assume lowering her forks will (if the OP's "Myth # 1 is correct) actually balance the suspension geometry front-to-back, as well as give her less reach to the ground?
If you do just slide up the forks in the triples without internally limiting travel at the same time, make sure there is enough room between the bottom of the lower triple and the low fender at full compression. That could be painful otherwise.
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Old 07-08-2012, 11:12 PM   #8
Dadayama OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mollygrubber View Post
My wife has a factory lowered F698, and it is still a little too tall for her. Her forks are all the way up in the triple tree. I assume lowering her forks will (if the OP's "Myth # 1 is correct) actually balance the suspension geometry front-to-back, as well as give her less reach to the ground?

Hello

for the record... the only difference in an F650GS twin between the lowered version and the the standard version is the rear shock, which sits right under you butt when you sit down... the lowered shock is a bit shorter so you sit lower... There is no adjusting the front forks as far as BMW is concerned...

Though it may sound like a good idea to lower the front forks, i would check with a qualified suspension person first... suspensions are a tricky and complicated thing...

Pedro over and out...
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Old 07-09-2012, 02:26 PM   #9
flatland964
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A couple of years ago I went with an Ohlins in my factory lowered 650 to bring it back to standard height and increase the load capacity for better two up riding. Only changes are the rear shock/spring and the kickstand. As has been said, nothing changes up front.

That said, shortly after changing the rear shock I became dissatisfied with the front suspension, particularly the dive and the front/back rocking of the bike over high speed bumps. I don't know if things actually changed because of the stiffer rear shock, or if the Ohlins was so good in the rear that it just made the shortcomings of the front suspension more obvious. In any case, a pair of intiminators had a very positive affect and I am happy with the suspension now.
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Old 07-09-2012, 09:07 PM   #10
Dadayama OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flatland964 View Post
A couple of years ago I went with an Ohlins in my factory lowered 650 to bring it back to standard height and increase the load capacity for better two up riding. Only changes are the rear shock/spring and the kickstand. As has been said, nothing changes up front.

That said, shortly after changing the rear shock I became dissatisfied with the front suspension, particularly the dive and the front/back rocking of the bike over high speed bumps. I don't know if things actually changed because of the stiffer rear shock, or if the Ohlins was so good in the rear that it just made the shortcomings of the front suspension more obvious. In any case, a pair of intiminators had a very positive affect and I am happy with the suspension now.
I did the same as you but in different order... i put the Intiminators on first then the Ohlin... and like you am very happy with the set up...
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Old 08-02-2012, 06:36 PM   #11
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Karen got her new Ohlins 801 shock installed during a scheduled service appointment on the third anniversary of her F650 purchase, 1Aug12. We paid $773 + S&H for the Ohlins shock from Fast Bike Industries (with the Greer SC BMW Off-road Training coupon). After failing to find any used side/center stands online, it cost $168 for the center stand & $132 for a new side-stand at Morton's BMW. We ended up paying $105 in labor for this portion of the routine service. We too ordered and installed the Intiminators at ya’lls’ informed suggestion ($149 + S&H) in order to improve the front end’s behavior. No other adjustments made to the front end. So raising her 2009 F650GS cost us about $1,361, not including our own time and labor to do the fork upgrade. She very much likes the feel of her new & improved suspension. Thanks to everyone for sharing your prior research and riding experience!

Sláinte!
Phil & Karen
2010 F800GS,
2009 F650GS,
2009 Kawasaki KLX250S,
2008 Honda CRF230L, and
1975 R90S.
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