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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I picked up a 2002 BMW K1200LT last week for the sum of $1300. The description read as follows: "Gently used K 1200 LT BMW I got this from an older gentleman. I drove it into the shed last fall and took the battery out, treated the fuel and put the bike cover on it. I have had a few injuries this past winter and I won’t be able to ride for some time. I purchased a new battery just a week ago and installed it. All the dash lights come on, radio works, the windshield works(up & down) and driving lights(brake, blinkers, headlight) all work although it will not start. I asked a few of my buddies who have owned BMW motorcycles in the past what could be the issue. The common denominator comes down to one of these reasons- the kick-stand safety is faulty, the alarm needs resetting or the kill switch in the right handle grip may be faulty. I do not know how to repair these items and since I’m not able to ride I really don’t want too. I’m asking for 2150 or best reasonable offer/open to trade. For someone who knows about BMW motorcycles this should be a relatively easy fix! "

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He was asking $2150, then listed for $1700, I offered $1500 after inspecting the bike, and he said "1500...1300.. I just want to get it out of here!" So I bought it. 90K miles, but really in very nice condition. Or so I thought.

A little background: I've owned many bikes; Hondas, Yamahas, Kawasakis. I've done a LOT of work both mechanical and electrical on motorcycles. I fixed electronics on A-6 jets in the Marines many years ago. Currently have a 2009 Harley Electra Glide. Also own a couple BMW cars which have been projects over the years. My dad had a BMW R75/5 (toaster tank, full Vetter fairing and bags) back in the day, so I've always been a bit nostalgic for BMW bikes.

Got it home, put the battery in, made certain it had a good charge and ascertained that, yes, the lights come on, yes the windshield moves.. but when you hit the start button nothing happens. I hear the brakes cycle, and I think I heard the fuel pump prime, but it was very short.

So, I hit the books. Read everything I could find on the alarm system, removing the alarm system, etc. Watched a couple videos. I hit the garage to see what I could see, removing the trunk, and rear box "lid".
Mouse Nest w/chewed wires #1 in the Alarm System.
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Cleaned that all up. Repaired the chewed/frayed wires. Re-installed Alarm System. Tried to start. No joy. I then did the "Alarm Delete" where you remove the pertinent parts, then short the appropriate wires (6 & 10; 3 & 11, IIRC) on the connector. Again, no joy.
Decided to remove the battery and make sure there were no wires hiding underneath that should have been connected (there are several for each battery post, no?). After I had the battery out, I looked a little forward of the battery compartment and noticed a little blue wire - chewed off - sitting there. Apparently the "charge" wire for the alternator was in the way of the MausBahn and was take by eminent domain. So, even if I had gotten the bike started it would have been running on the battery charge and the alternator would not have received the signal to send power.
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I decided a Tupperware party was in order, so, even though the temps have been in the mid-90's here in S. Maine with very high humidity, I set my mind to removing the panels; a closer look at the wiring all over the bike is in order. I also, as a pre-emptive strike, bought a used wiring harness from a 2002 K1200LT. I may need it.

When I removed the Tupperware, I found that it wasn't one lone mouse nest. My K1200 had gone Condo.
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Cleaned those out, and found more chewed wires on the underside of the 'Stingray.' I doubt those are the cause of the no-start, but they're not helping anything. Of course, with all these stripped wires co-mingling, I'm going to have to go through every fuse and relay to make sure they're not blown/shorted/fused.

So, next the tank needed to come off. At this point I'm putting zero faith in the statement that this bike ran "last Fall", so the gas needs to come out at the very least. And I had to wash all the mouse urine and crap off the gas tank. Yuck. Thank Harbor Freight for boxes of rubber work gloves.

Today the tank came off, and - of course - there was more "mouse wadding" on top of the transmission. Pulled the access cover from the air filter (praying that the furry little ba$tards hadn't gotten through to the throttle bodies) and had to work to get the air filter out - because there was a nest in there too, and the collective poo and pee had formed a tar cementing the air filter in place. Thankfully, they did not get through the air filter:
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I'm hoping that is the last of the mouse nests. They didn't get into the hard bags, and I don't think there are any pockets behind them. I still have to remove the handlebar covers, but again, not a lot of room there for living arrangements.

I'll be repairing the wires, doing the Charcoal Canister delete, checking the in-tank hoses. I drained the old fuel out (mixed it 50/50 with good gas to run in my mower and other garden equipment), and took a hose and soapy water to the tank. I'd like to do that to the other parts of the bike, but want to make sure the wiring is repaired/covered first.

I don't know if I'll be successful in this little adventure, but wanted to share it with other BMW enthusiasts. If there are any suggestions out there (other than "BURN IT!") I'm always open to that.

thanks for reading this lengthy post, although I'm not done yet!

Cheers;
Lonnie in Berwick, Maine
 

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Welcome to the forum Lonnie, that's quite a little project you have there. Kind of a pet project. Hopefully all the little pets have either died or left by now.
Sounds like you have the skills to get through it. You will probably find that the bike will have a bit of a mousy aura about it for a while, especially after the engine heats things up a bit.
Be careful with removing all the rats nests and their mess though, there is a very nasty thing called hantavirus that you can pick from rodents and it can be fatal. You can pick it up from their droppings and urine.
Keep us updated with your progress, we would love to see how you go. If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask. Plenty of very knowledgeable guys here who know these bikes inside out.
 

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Wrencher Extraordinaire
2005 K1200LT
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You do have your hands full but really this is all pretty simple to fix. The chewed wire in the alarm are likely the cause of no start. The plug you pull out is the bike side of the harness, the alarm side is mounted. So make sure you jumped the correct side.
 

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Before I bought mine something like that happened to the previous owner.
They chewed up the air filter but didn’t make through and also chewed the front brake lines.
We found out on an international trip. Good thing this bike has double circuits and the bike could stop only with the rear.
The module was toast after that though.
No frayed wires.
I bought the bike after that and has never been sitting long enough to get another rodent visit.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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What a great first post! You had me laughing and cringing at the same time. I think we should all sign a petition asking BMW to change the flavor of the wire insulation they use from "mouse candy" to "mouse YUK!". Once we get enough signatures, we send it back to 1996 or so using the Wayback Machine. 😛
 

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Thanks for reaffirming my position to never buy the illusive "barn find" for a motorcycle.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Didn't want to leave folks hanging. I've been doing some cleaning, a bit of chewed wire repair. Getting ready to go camping for a week, so won't be updating. Until 8/11 or so.
I did receive a replacement main wiring harness. Found a thread on this forum where a fellow had fried his harness while towing a trailer, but no process, pictures, or resolution. Oh well.
 

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This is just another one of those "unforeseen consequences" from the "save the planet" crowd.:rolleyes: You know...crap alcohol gas, squiggly lightbulbs, criminalize plastic straws, and now...Petroleum-free wiring insulation. Just Google Soy-based wiring insulation and you can spend an entire day while isolating yourself from the COVID virus reading the woes of what happens to your edible wiring once the rodents discover the free salad bar presented to them.:(

In addition to munching their way through your prized machines...remember, about the most corrosive chemical on earth is MOUSE PEE! So...as you labor diligently to replace your wiring, be sure to take all possible precautions to be certain to take measures to decrease the possibility that you can prevent the return of the rodents or you are merely replenishing their food supply.
 

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Had never heard of this soy-based insulation. Sounded like an internet-fueled myth. So I Googled it like you suggested. Son of a bitch! I had no idea. Seems like we need to spray down our bikes with something that tastes awful to keep the rodents away.
 
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