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Rambling R1200S Thoughts

Rambling thoughts regarding my R1200S

I think it was around 102+ degrees on the day of my break-in ride. A big loop over toward Capital Reef National Park. Going moderately slow due to the break-in. Topped out at 90 mph once or twice, but usually only 70-80 mph. Total miles around 250 or so.

My bike has the optional paint scheme, ABS, heated grips. No Ohlin's yet, nor wider rear tire. The paint as other reviews have noted, is far better looking than the pictures you see. It just doesn't photograph well. The black pinstriping is cheap however, as it is tape, not real paint like on my old bike. But the magma (look it up) red / titan silver is very nice looking, although I personally would have had the stripes going in a different direction. The black will be very popular, however like Harleys, there will probably be a majority of the bikes on the road in black. Followed by silver, then yellow. JMO.

Even though the bags are now gone it really makes little difference to me. In hindsight, I used my hard bags on the R1100S only twice in the time I owned them. Except for the rails, which I used to manuever the bike around in the garage. Some obviously use theirs more but I typically have to wear a Camelbak (Or I would die) so anything else goes in there and my fanny pack, and I don't do more than overnight trips. Ironically however, I just bought a tiny Dell travel laptop to put in the hard bags for internet, etc. I'll have to figure something out with that.

Tools. There are none to speak of, sure not like the old R1100S. Also, you need a T50 socket to remove the rear wheel, a new oil filter wrench (BMW list $79), and a spark plug puller thing (BMW list $36). The rear wheel stand is special too... it goes through the big hole in the wheel, you take the torx bolts off, and just remove the wheel if you decide to buy one. There is no centerstand available.

The bike itself feels much lighter and narrower, as it is. I think it's about 30 lbs lighter, but it feels like it's a lower center of gravity also. The R1100S has a big, wide front end tank structure that is now resized and less noticable. The tank is still the bulbus, BMW humpback whale style some like or hate. It looks purposeful and nasty from the front versus my old R1100S which is elegant instead. I don't think BMW will ever come up with a bike like that again as far as the body styling. The rear, lets be honest, is the biggest problem with this bike. Its like they ran out of time and just shoved an exhaust pipe up its butt, like the bad mechanics in Jim Carrey's movie "Mask." I will either buy a Laser eventually, or preferred the ZTechnik if it's what they say it is (Buy American!). That will make a huge difference in the bike. The rear on the R1100S in hindsight is absolutely beautiful.

When starting, the bike itself no longer has the fast idle lever, only a computer notification triangle that lets you know when all systems are go. I have a habit of twisting the throttle once first before hitting the starter button, don't know if it matters but it seems to help with any initial sputtering. It starts right up, and doesn't seem to shake as much, must be the counter balancing of the engine. The key also is "special." Somehow it is transmitting a signal to the bike which won't start if it doesn't recognize it's key.

The instruments include an oil temperature bar gauge and a bunch of "warnings", but still no fuel gauge (arggh), only the usual low fuel light. Also it has two trip odometers. I used one for the total ride, and the other between gas stations. However fuel mileage turned out pretty good, around 50 mpg. It also has a gear indicator light (...,4,5,6) which is actually pretty handy to look at as there is often confusion between 3rd and 4th, or 4th and 5th.

Now it's high compression engine has 122 hp versus the 98 hp advertised with the old S. Top speed I think is 155 mph instead of 140 mph. Will let you know someday. I don't know the 1/4 mile numbers. I'm always curious, it's an American thing.

The engine revs up really fast, spinning up very fast. Also it has a nice soft clicking from the valves that is comforting in a mechanical way.

The windscreen and mirrors are equal to, or better than the R1100S, even though the windscreen looks little. The wind blast seemed just right, and it must be deflecting something right as there were very few bugs accumulating on my helmet shield.

Once on the road the bike feels just like the R1100S to me, with the important differences of being smoother, far faster, and quicker to stop than my old bike. (Isn't that why you upgrade? If not why would you?) And it also corners like on rails. I got into a habit of reving down, then back up to speed because it was simply fun. The engine responded so fast. The reviews I've read also talk about the mammoth torque beyond 7,000 rpm. So far I can't say due to the break-in. And the seat, although looking like a plank, is more comfortable than the stock R1100S seat. Maybe because it was flat instead of a slow slide into the tank with your crotch.

The transmission is different feeling too. Noticable to me is that when you are in 1st or 6th there is absolutely no free movement further down or up. And very smooth when shifting. Kind of a high 1st gear, I found myself reving the engine more than needed to get started. That's just practice.

On the road the bike is very stable, fast, powerful, you name it. You can pass anything in about 1/2 second. I also felt better when pulling over in that I didn't feel I had to plan like I was landing a plane on an aircraft carrier (maybe that was just me), so I could stop anywhere.

I have a feeling a lot more of you will own one of these in the next few years as the bikes become available on the used market. I'm guessing it will be just like the R1100S, a bike the BMW traditionalists ignore, we buy because we like a certain riding style, and it becomes a niche.


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cRaIg CaRr
2000 Dyna FXDX, 2000 R1100S, R1200S, rNineT, F800GS, S1000XR, Jeep Rubicon, 2001 Corvette, 1978 Porsche 928. 22 pairs of shoes. 24 bottles of beer.
Time Marches On and gone: 2010 F800GS, 2015 F800GS, 2007 R1200S, 2003 Dakar, Buell 1125r, 2001 F650GS. 1999 F650. 1998 HD Sportster Sport. 2010 F150, 1995 GMC Sierra ALL GONE

Last edited by ckcarr; 06-30-2006 at 04:14 PM..
Old 06-29-2006, 01:56 AM
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...elica rossa...
 
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...wish I already had one...(...wife : "are you realy never satisfied...!")

...loved it after only a few miles ; great bike !
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Have a nice day !
Ron.

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Old 06-29-2006, 03:08 AM
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Nice writeup. Have to disagree with you about the candy cane not photographing well. Your pics are proving otherwise! I'll bet you get used to the horizontal stripe direction, and later on wouldn't want them another way...
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Old 06-29-2006, 08:03 AM
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Posted at 4:56 am and only 2 posts....ouch. Good write up... but I guess the R1200S is not new news anymore... Nobody is interested??? Hope your self esteem is not somehow tied to ownership ck...

We do enjoy all pictures of the brown grass and red rocks though so keep posting!!!
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Old 06-29-2006, 01:38 PM
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Man it's flat out here!
 
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Lots of solo riding in the baren wasteland...be careful out there. Having lived in Las Vegas in the late '70s I know what desert riding is like...I sure do miss it!
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Old 06-29-2006, 06:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by R111S
Lots of solo riding in the baren wasteland...be careful out there. Having lived in Las Vegas in the late '70s I know what desert riding is like...I sure do miss it!
Dang....it was 109 when I got home this evening....just the thought of putting on the riding outfit, helmet and gloves made me grab a liquid refreshment instead....and I was indoors enjoying the AC.....this aint the sweetest time o' year to be enjoying the desert.....dunno how ckcarr does it
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I sure do feel a lot more like I do now than when I first got here......

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Old 06-29-2006, 08:11 PM
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cRaIg CaRr
2000 Dyna FXDX, 2000 R1100S, R1200S, rNineT, F800GS, S1000XR, Jeep Rubicon, 2001 Corvette, 1978 Porsche 928. 22 pairs of shoes. 24 bottles of beer.
Time Marches On and gone: 2010 F800GS, 2015 F800GS, 2007 R1200S, 2003 Dakar, Buell 1125r, 2001 F650GS. 1999 F650. 1998 HD Sportster Sport. 2010 F150, 1995 GMC Sierra ALL GONE
Old 06-29-2006, 08:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by wswartzwel
The color of that beer reminds me of a bmw paint scheme....




Time to lighten up, Bill...
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Old 06-29-2006, 09:40 PM
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Nice write-up, Craig...and I do agree with you about the elegance of the R1100S. I had to have one the minute I saw my first '99 in the flesh. The R1100S is the only bike I've ever bought twice...and I still love just sitting next to my beer fridge in the garage and looking at it.

Yet, I do find myself lusting after the yellow R1200S with the high gearing and heated grips oover at Sturgis BMW; heck man, I'm off today, so I might ride over there and look at it again.

I just love that trellis frame and the whole open look.

Congrats on the new ride.
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Old 06-30-2006, 10:18 AM
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You do need both if you are also a lover of art.

I have my 928 in the garage I simply like looking at.

I also loved looking at, and riding the R1100S.

There is a very, very good possibility I will buy another R1100S to compliment the R1200S within a year. But the premium dollars go into the R1200S and the used market becons with very affordable 1100's

To expand on this a little. I was offered a trade-in that beat anything I could have received on the street trying to sell on my own. Even if I tried for 6-months. Realistically, I saw the price going down - eventually flattening out between $5,000 to $6,000 for my bike, and trade-in @ 80% would only be $4,000 to $4,800

So it was an opportune time to strike.
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cRaIg CaRr
2000 Dyna FXDX, 2000 R1100S, R1200S, rNineT, F800GS, S1000XR, Jeep Rubicon, 2001 Corvette, 1978 Porsche 928. 22 pairs of shoes. 24 bottles of beer.
Time Marches On and gone: 2010 F800GS, 2015 F800GS, 2007 R1200S, 2003 Dakar, Buell 1125r, 2001 F650GS. 1999 F650. 1998 HD Sportster Sport. 2010 F150, 1995 GMC Sierra ALL GONE

Last edited by ckcarr; 06-30-2006 at 10:25 AM..
Old 06-30-2006, 10:21 AM
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i saw a red/silver one for the first time on tuesday

defenetly much better in person,

sweet bike man!
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Old 06-30-2006, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by ckcarr
I was offered a trade-in that beat anything I could have received on the street trying to sell on my own. Even if I tried for 6-months. Realistically, I saw the price going down - eventually flattening out between $5,000 to $6,000 for my bike, and trade-in @ 80% would only be $4,000 to $4,800

So it was an opportune time to strike.
Like with a dagger to the heart. I hope you got a nice price.
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Old 06-30-2006, 10:57 AM
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Great Pics and great write up, looks great and like everything else, looks even better in person. If thats your frige. thats cool! Just select whichever size beer that you feel like you would like to enjoy at the moment. You got class. I don`t drink corona much but I think they have the most facinating commercials on TV, period. Again nice bike.

Regards,
Lane
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Old 06-30-2006, 11:06 AM
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OMG!!! Orphan.... LOL you guys crack me up, carlton & swartzy... which ever one of you guys did that...
Old 06-30-2006, 12:25 PM
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unsafe at any speed
 
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Abandoning a faithful bike after years of service and pleasure, is not a joking matter G.
Neither I nor Steve would do such a thing... Probably her Ghost.






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Old 06-30-2006, 01:01 PM
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Hey,

After a year do any of the new r1200s owners have anything to add or disagree with?
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cRaIg CaRr
2000 Dyna FXDX, 2000 R1100S, R1200S, rNineT, F800GS, S1000XR, Jeep Rubicon, 2001 Corvette, 1978 Porsche 928. 22 pairs of shoes. 24 bottles of beer.
Time Marches On and gone: 2010 F800GS, 2015 F800GS, 2007 R1200S, 2003 Dakar, Buell 1125r, 2001 F650GS. 1999 F650. 1998 HD Sportster Sport. 2010 F150, 1995 GMC Sierra ALL GONE
Old 07-01-2007, 09:25 AM
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I think you pretty much hit it, ck. Mine is like yours except I got the Ohlins and wide rear wheel. Of note to me, the first time I test rode the bike is the power that comes on at around 5,000 rpm or so. I thought it was a cam thing but when hanging with the BMW mechanics in the pits at VIR they mentioned that it was the motronic changing modes. Basically they said that when you get to a certain point in the rpm scale with full throttle, the motronic stops trying to keep an EPA restricted fuel mixture, but just opens up to what you're dialing in...."full throttle". (I think I have that right.) Anyway.... it's the FI that's giving us the 4-valve Ducati rush, not the cams. Second point....since I still have my R11S...I ride them both and am always amazed at how much I still really enjoy the R11S but also how much more power the R12S has. 24hp at the crank do make a diff y'all.
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Old 07-01-2007, 09:50 AM
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it sure is fun getting off the beaten track, ie dirt. used to do a lot of it on street bikes in New Zealand you get used to throwing a street bike around on a dirt road when that is is all there is!
TELL me you don't line up the labels on your beer
there is only one size of beer after a ride.........
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Last edited by onekiwi; 07-01-2007 at 09:58 AM..
Old 07-01-2007, 09:53 AM
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Congratulations on the new bike.

I ordered mine black, but due to a mixup with the order I was offered a red/silver at discount. I do not regret taking it because in life r/s does look very nice.
And besides, the response from the crowds was a general approval on the color scheme.
Old 07-01-2007, 12:17 PM
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I always did like that fridge photo....


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Old 07-01-2007, 12:40 PM
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