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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada
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R1100S Tank Mod. & Reliability Questions

Greetings,
Let me introduce myself after years of lurking. I have a 2001 R1100S with servo ABS & 38,300 Kms (24,000 miles) which I've love but grew tired of looking for gas stations. In preparation for a cross country ride to the west coast I enlarged the fuel tank to 25 litres by bumping it out about 4 inches on either side. The body work was replaced by used parts found on eBay. My bladder is now the limiting factor on a long ride. Most will find the final result ungodly but I see it as functionally beautiful plus the bike can be returned to original condition at anytime. While I wouldn't do it again, way too time consuming, I thought some of you may be interested.

My question to the forum is regarding reliability. The bike is currently stored in Vancouver, BC. The plan for this summer is to ride through Oregon & out to Montana. i'd then like to ride north into Alberta & back to Vancouver via the Prince Rupert ferry to Vancouver Island. The bike is now 16 years old but the mileage is relatively low. I don't ride hard & our conditions in Canada are not too severe in the summer. Would you complete some proactive maintenance on the typical R series weak points before a longer ride. I'm thinking of:
  • Clutch spline lube
  • Final drive inspection
  • Hall sensor replacement
I don't have many tools available where the bike is stored. Also, the bike was lowered an inch & all brake lines replaced over the last couple of years. Brake pads & tires are new, fluids are changed as per schedule.

Thanks in advance,
Charles

PS - In case anyone is interested I also have a 1980 Moto Guzzi LeMans & a 73 911S which has been in parts for decades.
Old 06-18-2017, 04:59 PM
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arbezc :

Nice job on the tank.
How about some protection for the tank like tank pads or something.

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Old 06-18-2017, 06:28 PM
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Are you going to be riding at night ?
The stock low beam bulb is not too bright .
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Old 06-18-2017, 06:32 PM
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A most ingenious way to add volume to the tank. I'd paint it to match & add some kind of pad to it also. Like above stock low beam is dull, an LED light can add bundles more illumination.
Nice job on the mod.
Old 06-18-2017, 06:42 PM
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I would check my splines IAW the video below. I wouldn't worry about lubing them if they're good.

Worn splines through starter hole w/ video

The HES on the R1100S is a little more stout than the old oilhead HES. I might consider carrying a spare, because they're relatively small and light.

I wouldn't be concerned about the final drive, but if overpreparation is your thing you could carry a spare big bearing and seal.

I would consider swapping out the brake lines too. There have been documented failures of brake lines as these bikes age.
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Old 06-19-2017, 02:48 AM
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Thanks for the feedback,
Yes I'm upgraded the bulb & brake lines for safety. I had couple of pads for the tank but found my knees landed about 1.5" behind & decided to keep this simple. Thought about paint but left the tank just bead blasted for low maintenance.

For anyone trying some forming for the first time. I opted for some heavier aluminum, 0.50" I think, a bit heavier than the tank since the bump-outs are not protected. (Also ensured that they didn't protrude so far as to touch ground if dropped) The thicker material was too heavy to easy form so I resorted to the hard edges you see in the photo. The welded liked the thicker stuff, still there were several leaks that needed further welding. There appears to be many custom car welders that are self taught.

One could also drop the sides of the tank down further to gain another few gallons. I chose to maintain the height of BMW's lowest side with the fuel pump. This way the inlet of the pump could remain stock if switching back to the original set-up. There's also the issue of engine cooling but I was a bit conservative when you look at the attached photo. In the end by evolving the R1100S it would be easier & even cheaper to just buy an RS. However, being on the short side, I like the scale & feel of this bike. Here's another image taken on my ride across the US last September.

Thanks for the pointers on reliability Jim. I've followed most of the discussions on this forum over the years & have done the checks. So far the drive train looks within spec. I plan to ride into some remote places & don't need a sudden failure. Regarding the HES, I understand the failure is usually due to overheated wires. Can this problem be seem by inspection? As a side note, this bike has had zero repairs since new.

Charles

Old 06-19-2017, 03:22 AM
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The 911S was always one of my favorites, although it's probably like remembering an old MGB fondly.

Get a nice PC680 battery. Of course it may not fit now. I would have said check the brake lines, but I see you did that. The splines seem to be just a crap shoot. It may happen or may never happen...
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2000 R1100S, 2000 Dyna FXDX, 2015 rNineT. 2016 Rubicon, 2010 F-150, 1995 GMC Sierra. 2001 Corvette, 1978 Porsche 928. Schwinn Homegrown MTB & Fastback Road Bike. 22 pairs of shoes. 44 bottles of beer.
Time Marches On: 2010 F800GS, 2007 R1200S, 2003 Dakar, Buell 1125r, 2001 F650GS. 1999 F650. 1998 HD Sportster Sport. ALL GONE
Old 06-19-2017, 05:01 AM
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You sure about the servo brakes? I thought they started in 2002.
Old 06-19-2017, 07:22 AM
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Yes, the 911S sounds & feels quite different than the other models. This one is all original & numbers matching. Now that I'm retiring its time to complete the restoration.

Thanks for the reminder, a PC680 was installed last year. It replaced one that is over 10 years old but still kicking. I plan to use it in an engine stand to spin up the 911 engine for oiling.

My 01 R1100S has servo assisted ABS, perhaps there's some differences with bikes shipped to Canada. I do my own fluid changes which takes several hours.
Old 06-19-2017, 10:27 AM
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It's different I like that and an option for the ABS folk think Lennie did something along the same lines.
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Old 06-19-2017, 11:19 AM
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The HES wires that cause the problems are tightly wrapped in a sheath. You might be able to cut the sheath away and inspect the wires, but you would stand a pretty good chance of nicking a wire and causing the exact problem you're inspecting for.

Let us know how it goes it you try it. It might be easier than I think it is.
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Old 06-20-2017, 01:12 AM
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Thanks for the suggestion Jim,
I'll likely give that a try, along with the spline inspection, when I'm in Vancouver in a month. At that point it may be prudent to just swap the HES for a new one & keep the old for back-up if its OK.

Has anyone seen a difference in quality between the Bosche & Enduralast versions sold by Boneyard?
Old 06-20-2017, 02:13 AM
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I have 2001 also. My HES went out 6 months ago at 10k miles. The wire insulation just fell apart.

I am cheap and put in the enduralast. The wiring seem to have a silicone look. So far- so good.
Old 06-20-2017, 04:00 AM
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I wouldnt obsess about the hes they seem to not be a huge problem depending on the individual
manufacturing run, new tires, new tires and probably new tires,
check the fd for play if it is tight leave it alone, make certain it is full. check the clutch disk by pulling the starter and seeing if the spline wear is reasonable, notes here elsewhere on how to do it.
youve done the brakes,
I did some riding in bc 2 years ago the island was nice once you got out of town.
there are several nice places to stay.
if you have servo abs, check the switch engagements on the levers is correct.
should engage before there is any breaking pressure. repalce the brake fluid if you havent done it in two years.
do a quick sync of the throttles it will run smoother.
Old 06-20-2017, 07:28 AM
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Thanks for the feedback guys,
It sounds as though I should be OK for now. I'll order a replacement HES for comfort.

It maybe best to avoid desert areas this summer with the current heat wave. Besides the hardware an improvement in fitness paid off last year. Its makes a difference to add a bit of cardio, stretching & weights at a certain age.

Thanks again,
Charles
Old 06-20-2017, 12:11 PM
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