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roger albert's Avatar
 
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Bar options

Hi all,

Well, I'm in the middle of an extended
(several day) R1100S test ride. Love it
but, being short, the reach, even to the
high bars that my test unit has, is enough
that there's too much weight on my wrists
and I'm scooted all the way forward onto the
skinny part of the seat. Any aftermarket
solutions for this. Its much less comfy than
my duc, which means I can't see buying it for
a new long-distance mount. I want it though.
Any ideas or product tips?

thanks
regards
roger
Old 08-30-1999, 12:52 PM
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I don't have an answer to your question, but I do share your pain! I was wondering myself if anyone has the BMW optional higher mounted bars? If so, an idea of cost and effectiveness would be much appreciated.
Old 12-06-1999, 05:07 AM
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Hi Pete,

Well, I've since (the first post) tried both hi and lo bmw bars. The factory high bars are a significant improvement for me and are great for sport riding, but leave too much weight on the hands during longer straight stretches or when just tooling into town. The full factory raised bar kit is several hundered dollars. A cheap way to find out
if they would be adequate is to take a short ride with the regular bars mounted about the triple clamp, instead of below. They bolt right up in well under 10 minutes. The only thing you lose is that there is no peg or other detent to keep the clip-on from rotating if the pinch clamp and bolt should happen to loosen. Most commerical triples don't have that anyway, so its not a big risk, especially for a short ride. If you decide this is good, you then have a couple options. 1) buy the bmw hi/comfort bar kit, or 2) by the small adaptors from suburban machinery that lock the bar into place so it
can't rotate around (small c shaped bracket that bolts under the triple where the original clipons were secured, and then wraps up and provides a new hole for the now higher mounted stock clipons to bolt too. That kit is less than 100 bucks. So, to sum up, its a free test, and an 80-300ish solution, depending on what you want. The factory high bar kit mostly just allows a more sanitary installation than a raised version of the low/stock bars. Note lastly, that the low/stock clipons when mounted above, are actually about 5mm taller than the hi/comfort factory bar kit. Verholen and Wuedo in Germany also offer options. I am also working on developing two options that will allow the factory hi-bars to go yet higher.
Prototyping and getting longer brake lines from bmw (from the taller of the two options I'm designing) and using a volunteer machinist for the prototyping means its all taking longer than I'd like, but do watch this space for future developements. Try yours mounted above the triple for now. I
believe you'll like it.

regards
roger
Old 12-06-1999, 06:38 AM
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Less comfy than your Duc????

Which Duc?
The Monster?

Puzzled.

MT
Old 12-06-1999, 12:17 PM
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Hi,

Yes, the S is much less comfy than my duc
monster. The S's seat is higher and the
bars lower, and further forward from the seat - Plus, more handlebar vibration on the
S, exacerbated by the higher weight on the bars. The S's windshield and fairing make
it nicer in cold weather though. That's my
story and I'm sticking to it.

later
roger - hopefully no longer being confusing.
Old 12-06-1999, 12:49 PM
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Roger,

I have the high bars installed and am reasonably satisfied with the comfort of the bike. As of now the maximum time I've ridden was 6 hours. No pain! I don't know what'll happen in longer rides though, as I find the positioning of the bars a little too low. I am following this thread attentively and looking forward to reading about your findings.

Regards,
Carlos

------------------
Best regards,
Carlos Saraiva
Raleigh, NC
saraiva@pobox.com
http://www.saraiva.com
99 BMW R1100S yet to be named, suggestions accepted
"What makes a man to wander? What makes a man to roam? Ride away. Ride away."
Old 12-08-1999, 07:24 PM
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In regards to the R1100S riding position:
I too suffer from aching wrists and worse yet, hands that fall asleep. I got the aftermarket risers from Suburban Machining. They were easy to install and helped some but for my 5'7" frame it's still not enough. I've been told that a Corbin saddle may help and I've seen the German triple clamp conversion for tubular bars. But they ain't cheap. The Corbin is $500 and the triple clamp was listed at 343,10 (I assume Deutsche Marks). Then there's the footpeg lowering kit from Suburban but when does the cash register stop ringing? I hate to think of not riding the S but for my safety I think an RT or even another R may be in my future (I had an 850R until recently, probably should have kept it).
Other than this problem and a little too much vibration at 4,000 rpm and 80 mph, this is one fine and fun bike.
I should add that I've tried many riding techniques to help relieve this i.e. relaxing hands, keep back straight, etc., etc. I did a 580 mi. tour of So. Utah in one day recently and my right wrist was toast. A throttle device of some sort would probably help also. Kaching.

[This message has been edited by Bob Truelsen (edited 12-09-1999).]
Old 12-09-1999, 10:56 AM
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Bob - I've only got an inch or so in height on you and have tried both the low and high bars. I may be lucky because I have not had any wrist or back issues (though I didn't on bikes with more radical seating either). My problem is also the hands falling asleep, as well as my feet on long rides. Guess what, it's the engine vibrations not the riding position. I have never experienced this on any other bike, even during "loooong" stretches in the saddle. My only advice is to try the gel gloves out on the market. They have helped me out quite a bit. As for my feet, I just have to remember to move the toes around every once in a while. I love the bike too much to consider changing back to a "smooth" four cylinder liter bike. I just got to learn to adjust.

Safe riding,
Paul W.
Old 12-09-1999, 12:55 PM
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Thanks for the advice Paul.
Actually, the dealer did suggest a gel glove. I think I'll go get 'em. I'm also going to consider the throttle device. A riding buddy with worse carpal than mine has one and swears by it.
All I think about are all those curves out there waiting for me to carve.
Ride On.
Old 12-09-1999, 01:18 PM
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Guess what, ladies, the R1100S is a sport bike. If you thought otherwise, because of the Rondel or some magazine report, you should go bact to a Standard or a Touring rig. If you try to make it something it is not via the aftermarket or accessories route well, I have a Harley Sportster I tried to turn into a GSXR I can sell you for more than the cost of my S.

The R1100S is one of the most comfortable sport bikes you can buy, but if you don't want a sport bike, don't buy it.

For God's sake don't put ape hanger bars and three-foot windshields on it.
Old 12-09-1999, 02:03 PM
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dfaber - I agree with you on the comfort level of the R1100S, especially with the high degree of "sport" character. It really is a perfect combination. That is why, even with the particular buzz or vibrational frequency that puts my hands and feet to sleep, I love the bike so much. The pluses greatly outweigh any negatives.

Safe riding,
Paul W.
Old 12-09-1999, 02:49 PM
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Guys and Girls,
Refer to my post about tubular handlebar conversions for the R1100S. It works real good, and it's cheap.
Some of you owners are against alterations for fear of compromising the sporting character of the bike. I don't need to tell YOU not to do it, but, as far as I'm concerned, motorcycles are made to be modified. Whatever pleases the owner is the way to go. Most, if not all motorcycles are NOT 100% "right" from the factory, and that certainly includes the BMW R1100S. In my humble opinion the seating position can be improved. I did it, and I'm very glad that I improved this motorcycle because I like it better now.
Walt Klimek
Tonawanda, NY

[This message has been edited by Walt Klimek (edited 12-10-1999).]
Old 12-10-1999, 04:04 AM
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Who manufacturers the gel gloves? Where are they available?
Old 12-10-1999, 11:23 AM
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Hi all,

Time for me to inject my $.02 again. First,
I'm going to have to disagree with the good and no doubt extra manly dfaber (no flame, so please please please, don't take it that way). The S is kind of a sport bike, says he. Fair enough, but that doesn't mean aftermarket accessories are used to make it something other than it is, but rather to make it more closely fit the rider. I don't get the insinuation that modification of the bike is somehow improper. Like any mass market product, its designed to fit some average joe-blow. Just like there aren't really any families with 2.4 kids, the average guy for whom the bike is a perfect fit is also rare or even non-existent. I think Walt has the right idea. If you _really_ know bikes, then you know that a semi expert rider makes the mount fit him, not the other way around. If the bike fits you better, you'll do better. Goes for seats, bars, suspension, and most everything.
Just a bit of counterpoint.

As for jgrm1s gel-glove question:
I picked mine up from my local beemer dealer. I believe they were the fairly common brand;
Olympia. hope that helps.

And back to dfaber Unless you're quite
tall, most ducks are comfortable mounts too.
They have about an even mix of pros and cons on the seating front, with respect to the S,
and much much less handlebar vibration.

Don't get me wrong, I love the S, or I wouldn't have it, but blind, lockstep, jawohl admiration covers up the fact that, as Walt said, most any bike can be improved.

later all, and have a good riding weekend.
regards
roger
(just back from a relaxed triple digit run
for bbq - the S _is_ uncannily comfy at those
speeds!)
Old 12-10-1999, 01:32 PM
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I got a catalogue from Competition Accessories and they have a nice range of different gel gloves from Olympia. Their web site is www.compacc.com.

By the way, it's not technically a sport bike. At least that's not how BMW markets it. It's that new buzz category Sport Touring with some excellent bikes available. Triumph Sprint, Ducati ST2 & 4. I wouldn't pit it against an F4 or R1, too heavy and not enough power. How many sport bikes come with saddle bags? Clear intentions there.

The purpose of a BBS is to get info. No bike is perfect for everyone. Myself I'm just trying to find a comfort zone where I can eat up miles of twisties without losing control of the bike because my hands fall asleep. If the bike fits you off the shelf, good for you.

I haven't ridden an RT but the dealer warns that riding wouldn't be quite as much fun.
Old 12-10-1999, 01:45 PM
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A few things by way of explanation. No, the R1100S is certainly not a sport bike in the full sense that a CBR600 or a DUC 900SS is a sport bike, and by all means, modifications are a great thing (I got the Corbin seat and removed the canister immediately, and plan on replacing shocks and exhaust as $ permit). But you cannot change the essential character of the machine by modifying it, at least not without unreasonable cost and disappointing results.

You can make the BMW slightly more sport, or somewhat more comfortable, but you will never make it a touring bike like an RT is, nor a track weapon like the Honda.

As for the vibrations, I was concerned at first, but they do seem to diminish with mileage.
Old 12-11-1999, 04:27 PM
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Hi Mike,

Yes, I raised the upper male tubes up the necessary inch+ or so. However, no, it doesn't change the steering angle on this bike. The upper tubes on the telelever are just for steering, and play no role in suspension, either springing, damping, or geometry wise, so you're safe there. The upper sliders just turn the lower portion of the suspension, though they do slide (since they're fixed in position) relative to the lower actual/active suspension components. There is a large (and, within reason, arbitrary) length of overlap between the upper and lower portions. Raising these upper tubes is exactly what the factory upper-mounting of the comfort/ high-bars requires, so this is in no way, some marginal hack of a procedure (as far as tube positioning goes -- the bmw safety/litigation dept no doubt would cover themselves by being against losing the little locating hole and screw that prevents clip-on rotation even if the clip-on pinch bolts should loosen. Note that you can make one of those yourself, or buy a set of locator relocators from Suburban Machinery)

Hope that helps/reassures

good luck
roger
Old 12-20-1999, 06:53 AM
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Hi people !
I did buy a set of suburban machinery pieces to put the clipon higher. As a result, it does make position a bit more confy, but, after few hours, same story: have a sleepy hands feeling, as well as some carpal pain.
I was wondering if any of you could help:
The thin electric cable that comes out from the left handlebar goes way to tigh when I turn the handlebar to the right side. I am afraid it will brake or split if I keep turning the bike. Does anyone knows how to relocate the cable so it will no be too tight?
Also, what it this cable for (maybe it the heated grips cable ??) It comes out exactly from the center of the left grip.
Regards

------------------

Old 01-17-2000, 05:26 PM
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Hi Norval

Don't know about that cable off the top of
my head, but I'll glance at mine this eve.
You might want to remove the fairing. Most
of the cables are wire-tied to other cables
in a sort of harness. On mine, I freed up
some extra length by removing the nearest
cable-tie. Everything was still secure, but
it gave a couple inches free play. That cable will fail prematurely if its getting stretched.

later
roger
Old 01-18-2000, 07:30 AM
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