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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have read, through this and other forums, about 'catastrophic driveline failure :mad: -and the fact that the Factory won't acknowledge the problem-nor, do anything about it.. What models/model years, has this happened to? Any information would help. Thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Let me ask this another way: as I may possibly purchase a 2010 K1300 GT-do I need to be concerned about a possible FD failure? How expensive is the bike to own/maintain?
 

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I will try to ease your worries. Like anything mechanical there will be failures of parts. Finial drive failures are more prevalent on the early (1999-2004) K1200LT. Must of these failures are do to over shimming the crown bearing from the factory. K1200GT have had some failures also but not many have been reported as on the LT. With time & miles some will require repairs. Most FD's can be rebuilt for about $300. to $400. or if you get a new one $1200. to $1500. There are a dozen or so members on this forum who have rebuilt (dare I say) hundreds of FD's with little to no repeat failures. This is do to proper measuring of the shims that came out of the Fd & the actual gap between the housing & bearing to insure the proper shim is installed.
There are more BMW of all makes that will NEVER have a FD failure then there are that will. Years ago a 4% failure rate was put on the K1200LT but I would say that over ALL BMW bikes it would be closer to 2% or even less.

If your the type of person that worries about every thing then lock your self inside you home & throw away the key. :rolleyes:

Kidding aside any bike you get be it HD, Honda or BMW could give you years of trouble free riding or leave you an the side of the road. Live is way too short to worry about everything. Ride a few bikes & get the one that puts the biggest smile on your face.


In closing remember on most forum (no matter what product it covers) most post are about things that break or go wrong because the people that are not having trouble are out using that product be it a motorcycle or a toaster & not posting on forums.
 

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On a KGT I'd be more worried about a catastrophic valve train failure than the rear drive..:rotf:

Fear not.. Very few fail.. And considering all things BMW.. It's a pretty cheap repair...

Good Luck

John
 

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When the final drive failed on my '06 K1200GT in Lovelock, NV ... over 2,100 miles from home ... I decided it was time to ride a more reliable bike/brand. I sold it and bought a 2010 Kawasaki Concours14. I feel it's about the exact same bike, but for some $5k-$6k less. It didn't come with cruise control, but $240 later, it was installed.

Should the K1600GT/GTL prove to be a more reliable bike, I might be returning back to BMW. Looks good so far ... time will tell. :bmw:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
messenger13_ver2 said:
When the final drive failed on my '06 K1200GT in Lovelock, NV ... over 2,100 miles from home ... I decided it was time to ride a more reliable bike/brand. I sold it and bought a 2010 Kawasaki Concours14. I feel it's about the exact same bike, but for some $5k-$6k less. It didn't come with cruise control, but $240 later, it was installed.

Should the K1600GT/GTL prove to be a more reliable bike, I might be returning back to BMW. Looks good so far ... time will tell. :bmw:
Thanks, Joe! I believe that I would have done something similar :( -as to what you did.
Hope that the Kaw, is working well for you. They make some nice motorcycles.
 

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messenger13_ver2 said:
When the final drive failed on my '06 K1200GT in Lovelock, NV ... over 2,100 miles from home ... I decided it was time to ride a more reliable bike/brand. I sold it and bought a 2010 Kawasaki Concours14. I feel it's about the exact same bike, but for some $5k-$6k less. It didn't come with cruise control, but $240 later, it was installed.

Should the K1600GT/GTL prove to be a more reliable bike, I might be returning back to BMW. Looks good so far ... time will tell. :bmw:
After owning two LTs, and then a K1200GT (all purchased from and serviced by the same dealer; as well as buying a Triumph from that same dealer, and bringing two friends in to that same dealer who bought a K1300GT and K1200GT), my rear drive failed as others have. Same root cause, same result. I had 26,900 miles on the bike, which was serviced every 3,000 miles, but because the bike was more than 3 years old, BMW refused to stand behind the bike, even though it was a known issue. The dealer was, shockingly to me, almost equally unconcerned. I paid to have the drive repaired, got on the bike, and drove it to my Victory dealer and traded it in on a 2012 CCT. I will never own anything with a roundel on it ever again - not because I had a failure, but because they refused to stand behind it when the simple passage of time has nothing to do with a bearing failure, and they know it.

YMMV
 

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I kind of agree.. This is a known issue.. The drives have been proven to be incorrectly shimmed at the factory...

This should just be a lifetime warranty by BMW... Correctly built drives are not failing.. Only overshimmed ones...

BMW should stand up and just do it.... But they won't..The lawyers would eat them alive...

JOhn
 

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We tend to be conditioned to "bulletproof" FDs by our cages where almost none of us have ever had a diff fail. Regrettably, for BMW bikes many owners have either had failures or the need to rebuild. This applies to ALL models made in the past decade though I guess one could argue the fate of the 6 is unknown due to its recent intro- ask about that one after another few seasons.

The K bike is like any other- it might well leave you stranded somewhere at whatever that probability of failure is- one can argue whether it is 4%, 2% or maybe higher but it is a big enough number to be a lot more possible than being hit by lightning while golfing. And yes, BMWs seem to have less reliable FDs than other brands. And it might take a couple weeks or more to get it back to running shape which will cost you that planned vacation..Note that almost all BMW dealers are closed Sun and Mon so a Sat failure on trip departure leaves you SOL until Tues at earliest in almost all places and then figure a minimum of 2-3 days to get it fixed if the parts are handy- otherwise 2 or 3 weeks so it will be almost a week to a month of downtime if you have a failure, unless you keep a spare FD on your bike, something a few IBA riders have been known to do.

That's all traded off against the perpetual nuisance of chain maintenance or cost of belt replacements (check with your Harley buds on that one).

The older 1200s like the RS and LT don't have the cam chain issues of the later type which needs its upgrades done if not yet so equipped to minimize chance of valve train failures.
And the newer K needs more maintenance and it takes more time than working on an R (boxer motor) bike- maybe not an issue if you "pay the dealer to do it" but noticeable if you do your own work. Its one of several reasons I use an RT and an older K1200RS, not a K1200GT or K1300GT. To a certain extent, I think the rep of the later models hurts resales of them- there are plenty around at competitive prices.

Problem with anyones gear FD is that if it dies on the road you're screwed but the more simple chain can always be cobbled to stay workable with only few simple bits you can carry on the bike. Still, I haven't had anything for road use except shaft drive bikes since 1983 (Honda and BMW) and so far have not personally had a failure tell you exactly how much I hate chain maintenance. I do check my FD carefully and regularly but that is not 100% effective at spotting impending failure.
 

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You must excuse BMW. They have very little experience with differentials and it's very difficult for them to access engineers who are well-versed in art differential design, or mechanical design in general. Making a reliable differential is a new and cutting-edge process and it may take them a few years to get it right....they've only been using differentials for almost 100 years so really, cut them some slack. :wtf:
 

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PerfectSwitch said:
You must excuse BMW. They have very little experience with differentials and it's very difficult for them to access engineers who are well-versed in art differential design, or mechanical design in general. Making a reliable differential is a new and cutting-edge process and it may take them a few years to get it right....they've only been using differentials for almost 100 years so really, cut them some slack. :wtf:

ROTFLMAO!
 
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