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I had said all along, over many years, that IMO, a GS-911 is a very expensive device to play with, but it is NOT necessary to have one to do any required maintenance on our bikes, and that includes brake fluid flush. OTOH, I do love to play with gadgets, but $400 is a bit rich for a (for me) toy!

So, I had been keeping my eye on the alternate option for a little while now, and somebody's recent post in another thread made me take another look, and realize that the device and app that you would need have "grown up", and for about $100, I am willing to get a new toy!

The reason for this post, and new thread, is because if you go at it the wrong way, you will be very dissatisfied when you unwittingly fall into a couple of potential issues. I want to share what I had researched and caution you about the potential pitfalls, with the products that I have purchased and used, just about a month ago.

Depending on what year bike you have (not necessarily just RTs), you will need either two or three things. The three things are: a good OBD-II scan device, an adapter cable to go from the standard OBD-II connector to the BMW round 10-pin connector, and the Android Only app MotoScan for BMW motorcycles. Here are the details on what you should get, and what to avoid:

OBD-II Scanner - these devices are based on ELM Electronics ELM327 chip. The very big issue is that the very early version of the chip has been heavily pirated by cheap Chinese manufacturers! Those cheap pirated devices will work, or not, and if they seem to work, they will have some very severe limitations as well as being inconsistent. You need to avoid those devices! One way of telling if the device that you are thinking of buying is legitimate or not, is to look at the cost, while keeping in mind that ELM sells their chip, in bulk to device manufacturer, at around $15 each! So, a cheap $5 or even $10 Chinese device isn't likely to be legitimate! You can read about this on ELM's website.

The scanner that I had bought, and recommend is the OBDLink LX, which is one of the one recommended by MotoScan. It will cost around $50 ( https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00H9S71LW/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 ). Note that MotoScan also recommend OBDLink MX, which is more expensive, but that is only because the MX model can communicate with Ford and Chevy vehicles, which have special communication protocol. That brings this to a special bonus in that you can use this device in your cars as well, with the free app for the product by the manufacturer!

OBD Connector to 10-pins BMW connector cable - You will NOT need this if you have the newer RT (2017+ ?). BMW has replaced the 10-pin diagnostic plug with the standard OBD-II connector for the newer bikes (must be an EU mandate!). For the rest of us, we do need this to connect the OBD-II scan tool to our bike. This is a potential pitfall as well. Some Chinese cables that you may see on eBay and even Amazon may have quality issues with their pins, and some have incorrect cross-connections between pins. This is a well-known issue, if you follow any of the discussions in other forums. I guess the safe thing to do is to buy what I have, which I know works very well. It will run you just under $20 at Amazon ( https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B075K7MQFC/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 ).

MotoScan - ( MotoScan for BMW Motorcycles - Apps on Google Play )this app is the heart of the application, and unfortunately, it is only available for Android and no plan of development for IOS at any time! It is free to download, and the "free" version will communicate with the scan device. MotoScan recommends that you do so, to make sure that your set-up is working. You can upgrade, within the app itself, to any of the 3 additional levels. The nice thing is that when you upgrade to a level that isn't the highest, you can upgrade to the higher level at any time by paying just the difference. Can't go backward though! :)

Presently, I have my MotoScan app paid for the second to the highest level (I think it's labeled as "Professional") at a cost of under $30, while the highest level is around $40+ (can't remember the exact numbers). At the Professional level, I can read and reset all fault codes, reset the service reminder, and (I believe) do the ABS brake module fluid flush. I don't know for sure only because I have not used it but went part way through the procedure just to explore. This level will not allow me to reset the adaptive vales, but the app can do so with the highest level.

Here is the item that this set up cannot do, at present, and it applies to the wetheads (and the newer BMW bikes only). Presently, it cannot do the ESA calibration. The feature works for the older bikes, and so you guys with camhead, hexhead won't have any issues at all! The app developer is working on the feature for the wethead and newer bikes, and he is hoping that it will work, perhaps next year. Here is what he said to me in a recent email communication:

Hello,

Is not possible on the new LC models. Will come next year.

Best Regards

--
Dipl.-Ing. Wladimir Gurskij
WGSoft.de
Automotive Diagnostic Software
Email: [email protected]
Homepage: WGSoft.de - Automotive Diagnostic Software, OBD-2.de - OBD-2.net - Das Fahrzeugdiagnose Informationsportal, MotoScan – App für professionelle BMW Motorrad Diagnose
Tel.: 05223/491234


Am 11.07.19 um 02:27 schrieb Padej Gajajiva:
I am using the Motoscan Professional with OBDLINK LX, on my 2015 BMW
R1200RT. Is it possible for me to do the ESA Calibration? I see the
option on the menu, but I had gotten an error message of not being
able to connect to the controller, when I tried to run the option.

Any help would be appreciated.

Regards,
Padej Gajajva.

I hope that the information is of some use! The app is very easy to use and understand, plus the bonus is that you can also use the device on your car to play around with. Oh, yeah, one other bonus is that you do NOT have any limitation as to how many bikes you use your set-up, which is very much in contrary to the $400 GS-911!
 

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I’ll probably go with this option. I don’t have an android phone, but I do have a Fire Tablet that runs android. There is a way to add the google play store to the device. Once I do that and it works I’ll buy the other tools


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Thanks Pad! This is definitely a more affordable option for those of us who really don't want to do much more than reset the service notification. Sharing the real world experience also takes away the risk of buying something that doesn't work.
 

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Be aware that the MotoScan app is a translation from German and there are many sections that don't make sense. I have this setup and used it once and it failed to reset the service mileage (it deals only with KM), and I blew about 6,000 miles past an oil change. It's also written in German techno-speak, so there's also that.

Also, have fun decoding any error messages.

As mentioned earlier, I got my 911 from a trade of my OEM seat; I haven't used the other setup since.
 
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I have the Motoscan tool (Ultimate version) and really enjoy it. Sent the developer a few questions before and after purchase so I would know that I was getting and how to use it. No issues so far. OMMV

Sammy

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I’ve been using MotoScan Ultimate app with the ‘correct’ hardware PadG mentioned at the start of this thread and I’ve been very satisfied with it for the price point. One advantage of this hardware set is the ELM327 scanner can be used with many of your cars and trucks as well in conjunction with another app like Torque...

I also have had a GS-911 for several years; in many ways it’s much more user-friendly, but for 95% of the maintenance I do on Hexheads the MotoScan app with an Android phone works great.

For those of you with iOS devices - if you want an Android phone just for bike/car diagnostics purposes many of the inexpensive ones at Walmart (‘burn phones’) will suffice; just buy one and don’t activate the cellular account.


Ride safe!
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks Pad! This is definitely a more affordable option for those of us who really don't want to do much more than reset the service notification. Sharing the real world experience also takes away the risk of buying something that doesn't work.
That is the main purpose of the post! :)


If all that you want to do is to get rid of the service reminder, you might want to pay for the 1st paid level of MotoScan first, and see if it will allow you to do that. If not, then you can always upgrade to the next level, which won't cost you any more than if you had gone for the higher level initially.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Be aware that the MotoScan app is a translation from German and there are many sections that don't make sense. I have this setup and used it once and it failed to reset the service mileage (it deals only with KM), and I blew about 6,000 miles past an oil change. It's also written in German techno-speak, so there's also that.

Also, have fun decoding any error messages.

As mentioned earlier, I got my 911 from a trade of my OEM seat; I haven't used the other setup since.
When was the last time that you had used MotoScan? I have absolutely no issues with the English, and IF you use the non-pirated OBD device, then you will not have any troubles at all with resetting anything! I didn't, anyway. The fault code readout is quite clear, in English.

As for blowing past the service time, I would chalk that up to operator error, big time! You DO have to know what you are doing, when using a tool like this.
 

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It is good to know that the newer RTs have the standard OBD-II connector. I have a BlueDriver for my cars. I wonder if it will work on a late model RT? It has been a great device for my cars and was relatively inexpensive at $100.

Anyone have a BlueDriver they have tried on their RT?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I’ll probably go with this option. I don’t have an android phone, but I do have a Fire Tablet that runs android. There is a way to add the google play store to the device. Once I do that and it works I’ll buy the other tools


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One other option mentioned in another forum (I think in AdvRider) is to buy a cheap Android prepay phone from Walmart, and use it just for this. Haven't look to see how cheap these phones are, but you could also buy a cheap used phone or tablet, just make sure that it is running at least the version of Android that MotoScan requires (it's in the MotoScan description).
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
It is good to know that the newer RTs have the standard OBD-II connector. I have a BlueDriver for my cars. I wonder if it will work on a late model RT? It has been a great device for my cars and was relatively inexpensive at $100.

Anyone have a BlueDriver they have tried on their RT?
If you have an Android device, then just install the free MotoScan app, and hook your BlueDriver to the bike and see for yourself. The free MotoScan won't let you change anything, but it will show you if you have connection, and display fault codes and other information. You just can't change anything, that's all. If you like it, and things looks good, then you can upgrade from within the app.
 

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If you have an Android device, then just install the free MotoScan app, and hook your BlueDriver to the bike and see for yourself. The free MotoScan won't let you change anything, but it will show you if you have connection, and display fault codes and other information. You just can't change anything, that's all. If you like it, and things looks good, then you can upgrade from within the app.
BlueDriver comes with its own app which is quite good. The problem is I don’t have an RT. :grin:

I am still riding an LT, but the R1250RT is on my short list so I am curious as to whether my current tool will work or if I have to buy something else.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have the Motoscan tool (Ultimate version) and really enjoy it. Sent the developer a few questions before and after purchase so I would know that I was getting and how to use it. No issues so far. OMMV

Sammy

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I was a little disappointed in that I really want to do the ESA calibration! I suspect that I will be upgrading to the Ultimate version as well, but next year when I get a new 2020 1250RT!


BTW, in the past, I had also said that I see no practical use for being able to see fault codes, since if there is anything wrong, I would have observed it in how the bike behaves. Well, I have to step back from that position at least a little bit now!!! 2 things had changed my mind.


The first was that, just prior to getting this set-up, I had some issues with my TPM readout for the rear wheel. First time, the reading went out for a minute or so, then comes back on for the rest of the long ride. The next ride I took, the rear TPM went out (after a while on the road) again, but this time stayed off for many minutes, and then it came back on for a while, then out again for a long while. It sure sounded like the battery was dying. Then I received the OBDLink and the cable, and hooked it up to my RT, and sure enough, there were several TPM communication fault codes, which I cleared (quite easily). Now, the strange part. On subsequent rides after that, the TPM was operating quite normally, and I did not have any more issue at al . . . . so far, anyway! Did clearing the fault code eliminated the problem? Too early to say yet, but we shall see.


The second reason was that another fault code that showed up was the throttle position sensor (or something like that)! That made me look at the connector at the right twist grip and check for firm engagement. If I hadn't seen the fault code, and checked the connection, it might have gotten completely loose while on the road, and that would have been some hassle! So, there is a value to seeing fault code and do a preemptive checking before things do go awry!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
BlueDriver comes with its own app which is quite good. The problem is I don’t have an RT. :grin:

I am still riding an LT, but the R1250RT is on my short list so I am curious as to whether my current tool will work or if I have to buy something else.
Sorry, I forgot!! :) OTOH, I do believe that the app works with the LT as well, but you will need to buy or borrow the conversion cable to try out.
 

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One more MotoScan note...

A couple of months ago I did an ASC retrofit to my 2009 R1200RT (all the details on that I posted elsewhere in this forum):
ASC Retrofit 09 R1200RT

The tech at the dealer downloaded the option code to the BMSK-P module (ECU) on the bike and I had already installed a retrofit ASC switch, but I had no indication on the instrument panel that ASC was active or disabled when I used the switch. No ASC light at all.

The GS-911 wasn’t much help in diagnosing this other than indicating ASC was installed in the ECU and letting me test the ASC indicator, but MotoScan allowed me to drill down into the KOMBI module (instrument panel) where I discovered the ASC light was never enabled.

The app allowed me to recode the KOMBI and enable that indicator so it works as it should now, without a return trip to the dealer.

With the re-coding capability MotoScan has it makes me think ASC was included in all the Hexhead RT ECUs past a certain VIN (also detailed in the referenced article) and all one would have to do is install the switch, go into the ECU and enable ASC, then into the KOMBI and enable the light.


Ride safe!
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
rangemaster - I believe it was one of your post in another thread a month or two back that had gotten me to update myself on the MotoScan thing. So, thanks!


As I said, I had been following the subject probably from the very beginning, and hadn't felt that it had "grown up", at least not the English version, until now. So far, I like it a lot.
 

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When was the last time that you had used MotoScan? I have absolutely no issues with the English, and IF you use the non-pirated OBD device, then you will not have any troubles at all with resetting anything! I didn't, anyway. The fault code readout is quite clear, in English.

As for blowing past the service time, I would chalk that up to operator error, big time! You DO have to know what you are doing, when using a tool like this.
It's been a while- once I got the 911, I haven't needed to use the MS app. The adapter itself was one of the ones they recommended.
 

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When I first started playing with the motor scan app it was in German and then bad/broken English and has gotten much better.

I still use my GS-911 and know my way around it. This is the 3rd generation I have used so it is my choice.

I am intrigued by the MotorScan app and what it may have the ability to do down the road. When I played with and bought it many months ago I did not think much of it as it was a bit rough but the guy is responsive to development so the app is going to get better and grow.

It is a cheaper choice and that is important to many.

I think one needs to look at the function charts of the Moto Scan app and the GS-911 functions. That will tell you if your needs are meet by which product.

Like I say I run EVERY re-calibration, every test of each system, and I reset my fuel tables so they can rebuild. The only reset I do not do it the SAP as my experience is if it works dont mess with it.

This app has been around for some time and has been made 100% better then the first release I down loaded.

I will always choose the GS-911 over it, but for 100 bucks for the top software and a good OBD II you have a great way to avoid the dealer.
 
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